Unknown maker (prob. England)

Portable Wet-Plate or Early Dry-Plate Camera c. 1860-1875

3 x 4



This is another small camera constructed by hand by an unknown cabinet-maker.  The hand-cut dovetail joints can be seen along the bottoms of the standards.  It is most likely of English origin. 

The lens is a Darlot Petzval-type lens; the seller, Benjamin French & Co., has engraved "B. F. & Co." on the side.

The camera has a number of interesting design features: 1) the folding bed is made rigid by pushing two long, wooden slats forwards; 2) the ground glass frame is held in position by springs (now missing and replaced by one spring), which allow the plateholder to be installed without removing the ground glass frame; when collapsed, the folding bed covers the back of the camera, and thus protects the ground glass from damage.



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