After my father died, I found two metal Kodak film cans, each containing a developed but uncut roll of 35mm b&w film. When I started to unroll the tightly wound film, it began disintegrating. But I glimpsed a few images and realized they were pictures he took in 1946-47 while stationed at a U.S. Army Air Force base in occupied Japan. The film had been stored in the cans for about 70 years. I also noticed that the images were made with a half-frame 35mm camera -- a type of camera I had never known him to own. What gives? After unsuccessful attempts to humidify the fragile film, I resorted to a destructive salvage process. I unrolled a few frames at a time, briefly immersed the strip in lukewarm water to relax the curl, quickly inserted it while still wet into a film holder, and copied the images with a DSLR before the base and emulsion disintegrated. I was able to salvage almost every image, albeit with some visible damage. Now to solve the camera mystery. One picture appeared to show a soldier playing guitar in the barracks (first photo below). Closer examination revealed he was holding a Mercury 35mm half-frame camera, recognizable by its distinctive hump on the top plate (second photo). Another picture showed my father next to some kind of military maintenance vehicle (third photo). Enlargement revealed he was holding a Mercury 35mm half-frame camera (fourth photo). My first thought was that he had borrowed the camera from the soldier in the barracks. But other images were taken in the U.S. either before or after his deployment to Japan. So now I think he bought the camera at a PX (Post Exchange, a military store) and used it for only a short time before selling or losing it. His other pictures in Japan were taken with a Brownie box camera he had received as a gift several years before. In any event, the camera was definitely a Mercury, and he didn't have it for long. Photo #1: At first I thought this soldier in the barracks was playing guitar... Photo #2: But no, he's holding a Mercury 35mm half-frame camera. Nothing else looks quite like it. Photo #3: My late father on the airfield, holding a camera. Behind him are several P-51 Mustang fighter planes, but I can't identify the vehicle. Enlargement of photo #3: It's a Mercury!