J.C. Sommerville (St. Louis, MO)

Universal Lens (rapid rectilinear) - c. 1885-c.1890's

 

The International Annual Anthony's Photographic Bulletin, Vol. III, 1890-1891, W. J. Harrison and A. H. Elliot, eds., E. & H. T. Anthony & Co. (New York, NY), ads p. 129


Notes: 

Despite being quite a distance from Rochester and New York City, the epicenters of photographic supplies activity, lenses of J.C. Sommerville are not rare, especially in sizes quite large, e.g., 14x17 and 18x22.

An article in Wilson's Photographic Magazine Vol. 28, page 284 describes the Sommerville's Universal Lens as a symmetrical rapid rectilinear type, i.e., two identical achromats, one in front and the other in the rear.  The author experimented with in the summer of 1885.  As a prominent photographer in St. Louis, he would have been one of the first to obtain one to try out, so the lens probably dates from then.

Prior to 1898, J. C. Somerville was bought and thereafter known as H. A. Hyatt.


American Annual of Photography and Photographic Times Almanac for 1898, The Scovill & Adams Co. (New York, NY), ads p. 22
 

 

References:
The American Annual of Photography and Photographic Times Almanac for 1888, C.W. Canfield, ed.; Scovill Mfg. Co. (New York, NY), copyright 1887, ads p. 13
The International Annual of Anthony's Photographic Bulletin, Vol. I, 1888, W. J. Harrison and A. H. Elliot, eds., E. & H. T. Anthony & Co. (New York, NY), ads p. 35
The International Annual of Anthony's Photographic Bulletin, Vol. I, 1889, W. J. Harrison and A. H. Elliot, eds., E. & H. T. Anthony & Co. (New York, NY), ads p. 27
The International Annual of Anthony's Photographic Bulletin, Vol. III, 1890-1891, W. J. Harrison and A. H. Elliot, eds., E. & H. T. Anthony & Co. (New York, NY), ads p. 129
The International Annual of Anthony's Photographic Bulletin Vol. VII 1895,E. & H.T. Anthony & Co. (New York, NY), 1894, ads p. 87
 

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