Camera [No.1 Brownie Model B]

Kodak Limited, Manufacturer

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Maker and Role
Kodak Limited, Manufacturer
Production Date
Camera - No.1 Brownie Model B. US Patents April 11, 1899, Nov. 27, 1900, April 14, 1903. Sighting attachment protruding above box, film winder on same side. The No.1 is a very simple camera with sight lines on the top surface to assist with framing the image. Unlike most box cameras, this model was used at eye level. The lens is mounted behind a 'flip-flop' shutter. The camera takes 117 film giving negatives 6 x 6 cm.

Object label text:

George Eastman, founder of the Eastman Kodak Company, simplified photography and made it accessible to the masses with his early advertising slogan “You press the button- we do the rest.” In 1883, Eastman announced the invention of photographic film in rolls. Kodak was born on the success of the first Kodak camera to enter the market, in 1888, using roll film. In 1900 Kodak’s first handheld camera the Brownie was launched, retailing for $1 US dollar, the camera was cleverly marketed for children and named after popular cartoon characters created by Palmer Cox. The arrival of the inexpensive Brownie camera meant that photography was not limited to professionals. Brownie cameras are box cameras with a simple meniscus lens; they were popular right up until the mid 1950s, with several modifications being made such as the Brownie Six-20 with dual viewfinders for landscape and portrait photography.
MOTAT’s collection of Kodak Brownie cameras includes the No. 1 Brownie Model B which is the first in the Brownie series. This is a very simple camera with a lens mounted behind a ‘flip-flop’ shutter. Unlike most box cameras this model was used at eye level rather than from the waist.
Processed Material/Metal
Accession No
Credit Line
Kodak Limited. 1900-1916. Camera [No.1 Brownie Model B], 1965.410. The Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT).

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