My grandmother's camera

Discussion in 'Classic Manual Cameras' started by connealy, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. My uncle sent me some scans of old family photos including this one of my grandmother sitting in a canoe in a Wisconsin pond.
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    Looking a her age, her dress and her demeanor, it seems possible the picture was made before the birth of my mother in 1917. I have some general ideas about the type of camera she is holding, but I haven't found anything that looks very specifically like it.
  2. Sorry about that; the picture showed up ok in the preview.
    Try the url:
    I'll appreciate any ideas.
  3. What a special photo to be cherished for ages! I think it's always a beautiful thing when we find pictures of loved ones from a long time ago, allowing us to peek in on their lives at the time. As for the camera, it looks like one of the Kodaks to me, but I'm not sure which model. There, that was a big help wasn't it? At any rate, thanks for sharing such a special photo.
  4. I can't say for sure from the picture, but it does look a lot (especially the shape of the lens standard) like my Ansco No. 3 Folding Buster Brown. On the inside it has patent dates of 1910, 1912 & 1918. If you cant find a picture of one on the web let me know and I will try and get one posted.
  5. That sure looks like a good possibility. I found an example on ebay:
    It would be interesting to know who took the picture and what kind of camera was used for that too, but all who would know that are long gone. Most likely my grandfather, I suppose as there is also a photo of him in a two piece bathing suit at what is likely the same pond.
    Many thanks.
  6. Looks much like a Kodak 3A Folding Brownie, the early horiztonal wood version. However, that front standard doesn't look quite right, so it may have been a competitor's similar camera. Or maybe I didn't find a picture of the right version.
    The size is clearly large enough to be 3A, which took 3-1/4" by 5-1/2" photos on 122 size film. That was a very popular size in that era, made very nice large contact prints.
  7. Mike, I must say that your Grandmother looks admirable and authoritative in that picture! Congratualtions, sp.
  8. Yes, I think she could have been a "Kodak Girl", or maybe the Ansco equivalent.
  9. Wonderful photograph. The camera looks a bit like this one.
  10. Thanks, Gene. Another very good candidate. That's what I first had in mind, but I couldn't find a good picture. I guess either the Ansco or the Kodak is close enough. I've been looking for a while for one of this type to shoot, so with this new incentive maybe I'll get one and make a few photos.
  11. I don't know about the camera, but I couldn't resist adding the comment that it's a charming photo and I enjoyed seeing it. :) I've been scanning some old negatives, 2x3", from my mother's childhood, and I find them fascinating to see.
  12. Great photo, Mike. A piece of family history preserved.
  13. I'm wondering if the photo might have been taken with a 'focus-free' camera like a box camera with fixed focus, as the focus is quite obviously behind her a few feet.... which would fit the 8 feet focus distance that seemed to be common with cameras of that type.
  14. Mike. You can use mine.
  15. Thanks, Gene; that's a real beauty. I've got a bid on a similar one now, so we'll see what happens with that. Not that I need any more, of course. With all the nice old classics I've got, I have been spending most of my time lately with a ten-dollar plastic p&s.

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