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So, where's your camera been?
Old 02-09-2006   #1
reagan
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So, where's your camera been?

Did you every wonder where your camera had been before you got it? I always do. A short while ago I recieved from one of our own, JimG, a really nice Leica III. I immediately became soooo attached to it. (Surprise!)

Along with the camera Jim included a photo-copy of a Leica III instruction book. There on the cover was stamped the name/address of a local photo shop... in Bolivia. I remembered Jim posting that the camera had been purchased in New York, so my curiosity finally got the best of me and wrote Jim back and asked him if he knew anything about the camera's history. Here's what he replied.
______________

My father was a mining engineer and worked in Bolivia, Colombia and Peru from 1926 to 1950. His employer's office was in New York where he purchased the camera, (your camera) in 1939. He told me it had just arrived by zeppelin fresh from Germany. I have photos he made with it from Moffat Tunnel in Colorado, crossing thru the Panama Canal and all over the Amazon Basin.

It's really a testimonial to the quality of these cameras that it's in as good a condition as it's in. His main mode of transportation was river raft and horse back. Have you ever seen John Huston's 'Treasure of the Sierra Madre' with Humphrey Bogart & Walter Huston? That's what your camera survived and I still have the photos to document it.

Anyway he died, I got the camera many years ago which I seldom used because I prefer what is for me a faster film loading system. My daughter who prefers SLR's didn't want the Leica and I wanted it used by someone who would appreciate it. So you got it.


Great story, great camera. Thanks JimG.


Any more camera history stories out there?
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Old 02-09-2006   #2
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Damn, that's a great story, and - putting it mildly - a tough one to top. The only camera in my possesion with anything approaching a story (or backstory) is my father's Polaroid 95, but it's hardly anything to get worked up about, and I spent a good deal of time behind that camera, from age 7 onward (when he could finally trust me with the thing), so there's not much mystery either.

My Hexar RFs and trio of lenses were bought new, so theirs is a story in the making (they've been as far West as Texas and as far South as...well, as far as you can go without drowning). Dog knows where my Konica S3 has been before I got my paws on it.

Again, thanks so much for sharing this.


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Old 02-09-2006   #3
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Hum I wonder where my IIIc has been in the last 55 years? tobad you couldn't track them through time. The only camera I own that I know the history on is my D1. I was originaly purchased by Bob Warner a Fire Fighter turned Photo Journalist. He was a widely respected photographer shooting for many major publications and newspapers. He was being offered a position as senior photo editor for AP in Washington DC. I recived the camera from a friend and photographer who recived it from Bob shortly before he died as the result of a car accident on route to visit some family and shoot photos at the Carlsbad caverns. The camera had been used to photograph major news and sporting events such as the Kentucky Derby and celberites George Clooney, Ashley Judd and Alison Krauss.
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Old 02-09-2006   #4
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my m3 was once owned by a doctor

and a student.

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Old 02-09-2006   #5
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If I told ya, I'd have to put a contract out on ya!

Seriously, I have a IIIf RD that I bought in MD in 1972. It's been to Kansas, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, England, New Mexico and Georgia just to name the places that are on the top of my head. It was CLA'd by the factory in Wetzlar when I hand-carried it there myself. It's still as smooth as silk on glass.

Both pictures I submitted for inclusion in the RF Book were taken with it.

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Old 02-09-2006   #6
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Howdy from Wyoming;

I have 7 cameras that belonged to the Stetner brothers, a highly regarded mountain climbing team the pioneered many routes in the Rocky Mountains. Both brothers were members of the Chicago mountaineering club. There is a book about them titled the Stetner Way. The cameras are Kodak Retina 1a, Retina II, two variations of the Retina IIa, Retina IIIC, Voigtlander Bessa II w/Skopar, and also their Victor 16mm cine camera. These cameras recorded many of their famous first ascents.

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Old 02-09-2006   #7
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Barrett, seems like my dad had a Polaroid for a short time as well, but I barely remember it. He was 99% a 35mm man. I have none of his cameras now and have no idea what happened to them. So "having your dad's Polaroid" is a good story... IMO.

Walker, I didn't read your post, so you don't have to put a contract out on me... just the other guys.

Wow, Mike. I'm too afraid of heights to use those babies. Good story.

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Old 02-09-2006   #8
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I own a few older cameras a few I still use others are on a shelf somewhere in my house.
I would love to know where they've been and what pictures they've taken. Just the thought that someone out there with the same passion for photography and the same love of just holding a camera may have own or used this camera.
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Old 02-09-2006   #9
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Interesting that some of you know the history of your used cameras. The only one I know is the 50mm lens for my Super Press 23. I got it second hand from a local pro who used it extensively for all kinds of work, but primarily architectural documentation.

When my gear that I purchased new gets passed on somebody will get a Yashica TL Super I purchased in the PX in Quang Tri, Vietnam. It has traveled with me to Colorado, Korea three times, Ft Knox, Ft Campbell, Washington, DC, all over the US West, and points in between. Same for my Super Press 23 and Fujica ST 901 except they only joined me my first time in Korea. The Fujica has hung out with me out of a 'copter in Korea, photographed numerous crime scenes and autopsies, as well as surveillance photos, and just been a fun camera to have along all the time. It has visited a lot of temples in Korea and the Korean National Museum in Seoul for a special photo op in a place where photography was not normally allowed. It was great as even then I was not allowed to use flash, so a tripod and its AP exposure worked well. It was good on a lot of crime scenes for the same reason. It has also taken a great many family photos.

Still, nothing as exciting as some of the stories already told. I envy y'all.
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Old 02-09-2006   #10
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Well, I can only imagine where most of my cameras have been - since I bought all of them used.
I know for sure that my Nikkor 24/2.8 lens went to London, Paris and Rome - once to London with me, and to Rome and Paris with a friend, on loan
As for the RF cameras, I got my M2 used in Austria, and can only imagine where it went before it settled down with me. My M3 and M6 came from USA, and I only know for sure that the M6 was used to take some nice photos of deer grazing near Brian's house in Virginia prior to embarking on the journey to Croatia

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Old 02-09-2006   #11
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Hmmpf! Great story! How can I top that?! I can't!
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Old 02-10-2006   #12
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My Lynx 14 is formerly owned by Karen Nakamura who runs the Photoethnography website. I am sure it has travelled places I am only dreaming about.

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Old 02-10-2006   #13
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Very nice story and thread !

My M2 seemed to spend many hours of hard work under the US Navy supervision.
My Canon P comes from a photojournalist who treated it with great care, it even has a (newspaper? service?) 'FH' sticker which I'd really like to know more of.
My ex-Moskva (now Chase's) seemed to belong to a Russian professional.
My Leica CL belonged to our very own Gene Wilburn !
My black Kiev 4a was a present from a missed friend and retired PJ
My Minolta Hi-matic 7s came from our unique and fearless moderator

And I have to think of more...
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Old 02-10-2006   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CVBLZ4
Did you every wonder where your camera had been before you got it? I always do. A short while ago I recieved from one of our own, JimG, a really nice Leica III. I immediately became soooo attached to it. (Surprise!)

Along with the camera Jim included a photo-copy of a Leica III instruction book. There on the cover was stamped the name/address of a local photo shop... in Bolivia. I remembered Jim posting that the camera had been purchased in New York, so my curiosity finally got the best of me and wrote Jim back and asked him if he knew anything about the camera's history. Here's what he replied.
______________

My father was a mining engineer and worked in Bolivia, Colombia and Peru from 1926 to 1950. His employer's office was in New York where he purchased the camera, (your camera) in 1939. He told me it had just arrived by zeppelin fresh from Germany. I have photos he made with it from Moffat Tunnel in Colorado, crossing thru the Panama Canal and all over the Amazon Basin.

It's really a testimonial to the quality of these cameras that it's in as good a condition as it's in. His main mode of transportation was river raft and horse back. Have you ever seen John Huston's 'Treasure of the Sierra Madre' with Humphrey Bogart & Walter Huston? That's what your camera survived and I still have the photos to document it.

Anyway he died, I got the camera many years ago which I seldom used because I prefer what is for me a faster film loading system. My daughter who prefers SLR's didn't want the Leica and I wanted it used by someone who would appreciate it. So you got it.


Great story, great camera. Thanks JimG.


Any more camera history stories out there?

This is SO BIZARRE! That is EXACTLY the same story my collapsible Elmar 50mm lens comes with!

Wait, the lens I bought from Jim was attached to this camera, so it's not so weird after all.
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Old 02-10-2006   #15
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I'd love to know the stories behind my Leica IIIa, Elmar 50, 35 & 90 and Summar. All are pre-war, acquired separately and looked fairly well used. The IIIa & Elmars 50 & 90 are quite brassed.
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Old 02-10-2006   #16
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My M4-2 was purchased by an Army Combat photographer named Joe Lieberman in 1979. He puchased it NYC before going to Germany for the last time. He also carried it to Moscow in 1980 and to Korea before retiring in 1981. Since then it has been all overthe US and Canada, GB and europe.
Joe sold it to me to pay medical bills from his battle with terminal cancer. Joe is now on a very low limb and does not have much longer to live. I wish I could have gotten his M3 as it had been in some deep s*** with him.
My old Canonet, I bought in '73 has been to Viet Nam, cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Hong Kong, Philipines, Korea, Japan, Fiji islands, New Zealand and Australia. It has rode in Swift Boats, Helos and Marine AmTracks. It was also with me for the evacuation of Saigon and it walked the beaches of Hawaii many times while I was stationed there. It has been to Ak, Wa,Ca. and Az. and much more before I retired it and started using a Pentax ME Super
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Old 02-10-2006   #17
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Don't have any history on my M but have a good story about my Canon F1. A good freind of mine knew I was into photography and gave me this camera when his father passed. He wanted it to continue to get used and not just sell it off. His father towed a camper around all of North America to include all USA states to include Alaska and parts of Canada. He had this F1 with him for all of it. I know it's taken many great shots all over the place. I now keep it at my moms house in florida and it's the only camera I have when I go see her. Since I do this quite often it is still getting alot of use.
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Old 02-10-2006   #18
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This is an interesting thread. It reminds me of what my mother used to tell me - don't put it in your mouth, you don't know where it has been. Not that I am going to start putting my cameras in my mouth and knowing where they have been, I am less likely to do so.

All my cameras were bought new. So they have made their own record of where they have been. Naturally, I was there too. I often look at a picture as a document of something, but it is also a record of where the photographer was. (I don't know if that articulates that well, but I know what I mean.) It would be fascinating when you get a camera to get a copy of all the photos that were taken with it.

Just a side note, anyone see the TV series "Shooting the Past" or "Perfect Strangers"? They seem to go along with this thread.
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Old 02-10-2006   #19
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My most traveled camera is a Contax II that I bought in New Zealand in 1983. The inside of the camera back has a service sticker from a camera store in Beunos Aires, Argentina. I used the camera in NZ and Australia on that trip. Used it from time to time in various locations in the US, most notably in SE Alaska. Serviced by Henry Scherer in 2002, and subsequently used in Spain, Costa Rica and Ecuador/Galapagos, and plan to take it with me to Hawaii this May.

I wish it could tell me how it got to NZ from the point of production in Germany, with a stop-over in Argentina.
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Old 02-10-2006   #20
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My chrome M6 used to below to an army medical officer. He took it to the top of K2 on a training mission at one point. Back in the England, the camera fell off the back of his motorbike somewhere in the west country. A couple found the camera and sent it back to Leica, who matched the serial number with some sales record and returned the camera to its owner! He later sold it to a photographer friend, who in turn sold it to me. And some lovely looking scars it's got too (I can't understand the appeal of pristine cameras)!
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Old 02-10-2006   #21
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Wow, great stories all! I love it!!

Someone wrote that they wished you could put these old rangefinders to your eye, push a button and see everything it had seen before. Well, here's a glimpse of what my Leica III and FrankS's Elmar have seen before. I just thougt it was too good to keep to myself.

Jim wrote: "Reagan, The guy facing the the camera was my father. Notice the guy facing him looks like he's holding a Rollie TLR. JimG"


Looks like just another RFF Meet, eh?
(Thanks JimG for sharing. I promise I won't post every pic you send me! )
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Old 02-13-2006   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CVBLZ4
Did you every wonder where your camera had been before you got it? I always do. A short while ago I recieved from one of our own, JimG, a really nice Leica III. I immediately became soooo attached to it. (Surprise!)

Along with the camera Jim included a photo-copy of a Leica III instruction book. There on the cover was stamped the name/address of a local photo shop... in Bolivia. I remembered Jim posting that the camera had been purchased in New York, so my curiosity finally got the best of me and wrote Jim back and asked him if he knew anything about the camera's history. Here's what he replied.
______________

My father was a mining engineer and worked in Bolivia, Colombia and Peru from 1926 to 1950. His employer's office was in New York where he purchased the camera, (your camera) in 1939. He told me it had just arrived by zeppelin fresh from Germany. I have photos he made with it from Moffat Tunnel in Colorado, crossing thru the Panama Canal and all over the Amazon Basin.

It's really a testimonial to the quality of these cameras that it's in as good a condition as it's in. His main mode of transportation was river raft and horse back. Have you ever seen John Huston's 'Treasure of the Sierra Madre' with Humphrey Bogart & Walter Huston? That's what your camera survived and I still have the photos to document it.

Anyway he died, I got the camera many years ago which I seldom used because I prefer what is for me a faster film loading system. My daughter who prefers SLR's didn't want the Leica and I wanted it used by someone who would appreciate it. So you got it.


Great story, great camera. Thanks JimG.


Any more camera history stories out there?
Liking your story. My father was a professional photographer when I was very young. He was still into photography very much when I was 13. He had a darkroom at home and a lot of camera equipment. When I was 14 he died and my mothers brothers took all of everything he owned. I never got even a watch, a ring, a camera, nothing. I saw a camera like he had owned about a year and a half ago and bought it. I have been a photographer ever since that day. I now have 28 cameras in my collection. 17 of which are rangefinders, all in good working order. I do not know if I have any like he had other than that one, but I have bought some from the time he would have been owning cameras, so maybe I do. One of my favorite ones is a mint condition Petri 7s. It is dead on. Then my minoltas and the Yashica is sooo perfect. The pictures so sharp, as to cut oneself.
And the beautifl part is that all the prime lens are so sharp but so inexpensive compared to todays. I do have a Canon Pro 1 and Nikon D50 though, but I take my rangefinder with me everyday. I have a film scanner. I am now 60 years old and would like to say to all. Do not wait until you are old to do what you want or should. Oh, well, enough already. I am waiting for the mail also like you all. Still have cameras coming, etc...and waiting for the next trip to take pics. Maybe I will see you there.
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Old 02-13-2006   #23
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I don't have any stories about my cameras, although I would really like to know where my F1 has been!! But some of you might remember my a post about how I aquired my darkroom equipment. I answered an add in the local paper for darkroom equipment, and bought it from an older gentalman. He really wanted to sell the enlarger and the other stuff, but I only wanted the enlarger. He was so exicted to see all of his collection go to someone who will use it!! I still talk to him from time to time, and hope to take him some pictures when I find one good enough to give him.

Anyway, that story will be passed on to whoever gets the equipment from me.
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Old 02-18-2006   #24
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I don't know where all my IIIf had been before I bought it at a trade show but since then I've taken it on a few trips. I had taken it to Kuwait, Germany, U.K. where it began to fail. I sent it to DAG and since then have traveled to Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Germany, and today I leave for the U.K. again. I like the little traveling companion and the security people at airports get a kick out of it once they are convinced it really is a camera.

Last fall in the Frankfurt airport I was going through security prior to my flight back to Chicago. The small camera bag that I was carrying contained a small digital camera and my IIIf. I placed the camera bag, my boots, belt, brief case on the conveyor belt for them to run it through the X-ray machine. They ran the conveyor belt back and fourth looking at that camera bag. Finally they had me open the bag and take out the contents. When I removed the IIIf this security guard started laughing. This other guard said to me "He's laughing because his fiance' works at Leica in Solms, and he now knows what it was he was looking at on the X-ray maching!" The guard told me that the picture they were getting on the X-ray was so dense they could not acurately tell what it was.

Next month it goes to Japan, and in April it is going to Turkey and Italy. June the 1st it will be my companion in retirement.

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Old 02-18-2006   #25
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It will be miracle, if somebody could tell me where my Argus A has been for 70 years (according to its number, it was produced in 1936)
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Old 02-18-2006   #26
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I may have a long story describing the adventures of my cameras. Where do I start ... the Retina Ib was soaked on three canoe trips in the cold creek, and this also describes my canoeing expertise in a nutshell. My M3 was bought new in Germany, so I know it "lived" overseas until I bought it about 15 years ago. The Contarex supposedly belonged to Bob Shell, the former Editor of Shutterbug, and I don't know where it could have traveled. My unique over-sized 8x10 military camera was a special projects Navy camera in Pennsylvania, and I don't know where it was used for intelligence gathering from air. I bet that most old cameras have a story to tell.
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Old 02-18-2006   #27
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The Leica IIIa shown in my avatar was purchased used from a basement Used Camera Shop beneath Salem Camera Shop in Dayton, OH, in 1952. I was stationed at Wright-Patterson AFB, where many service personnel passed through following WW2. Consequently, the used camera dealer, known as "Trader Horn", got a lot of goods from returning servicemen who wanted to cash in on their trophies from the war. It appeared well cared for, but I have no knowledge of its ownership from 1935 to 1952. It has served me well for over 50 years.
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Old 02-18-2006   #28
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I purchased some used leica gear in an antique shop in Charleston SC. In the set was an M2 that I kept and a IIIG that I sold. Also there was a well worn III that was basically a basket case that i didn't purchase. I know the owner was the husband of the shop owner and he was a neurosurgeon. In the deal of all of the equipment I acquired several wooden slide cases with about one hundred 35mm slides in each. Most were faded badly but a few were Kodachrome I that look beautiful even today. All of the images were probably taken with the model III and possibly some with the IIIG and 1960 vintage M2 but I would guess most were with the model III. In the sildes were many shots in Germany just post WWII. Very interesting images that I will scan one day when I feel like taking them out of the the glass mounts that are all taped with black tape. Unfortunately I do not have the cameras that my dad had during WWII. I do have his negatives though. I have many boxes of glass plates shot with a folding RF plate camera. He also had a Russian copy of a Leica that he carried through the war and photographed wartime cities in France, Belgium, England and Germany. All of the 35mm are nitrate negs but still in great shape. I plan to scan many of these shots of street scenes and military scenes and make a gallery on this forum to share his beautiful images. My grandfather, fathers father, was also a photo bug and was born in Germany in 1875. I wish I had some of his images but have none. He deserted the Prussian military and came to the US and most likely had to abandon his toys.


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Old 02-19-2006   #29
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well about the only place my RFs have been is Mexico
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Old 02-19-2006   #30
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My most traveled camera is my Nikon F2A, which I bought new in Germany in 1980. It also has been to Luxembourg, Holland, Italy, Spain and Switzerland during that part of my life. I also used it semiprofessionally in Pittsburgh when I was doing a lot of newspaper shooting in the 1980s.

Then later, off to New Jersey twice, New York and another trip to Pittsburgh with stops in Belgium, China and Hong Kong along the way before returning to Pittsburgh for a third time.

These days, I use it to collimate lenses.

Maybe next month, I'll take it to Canada. It hasn't been shot in quite a while. It's still in great shape, because I don't beat my gear. Aside from a tiny amount of brassing, it looks really nice. I would rate the body about 9 out of 10. Shutter is in perfect condition, and I replaced all of the foam seals two years ago.
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Old 02-20-2006   #31
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So my brother comes to visit for a couple of days. The ladyfolk are in the kitchen swappin' recipes and we're in the study talkin' guns 'n cameras.

I tell him, "I'm thinkin' about seeing if anyone wants your old camera for parts."

"Parts?" he says. "What's wrong with it?"

"Beats me. It's been broken as long as we've had it I think."

"What are you talkin' about? You just took pictures with it last summer at the farm."

"I've NEVER taken a single picture with it. It's never worked! You can shake it and hear parts bangin' and slappin' around inside."

"My Canon?"

"Canon? No. The little Kodak."

"What Kodak?" he says. "I've never had a Kodak in my life."

So I pulled out the Kodak Retinette 1A that's been in my drawer for two years. I'd gathered it up when we moved to Illinois thinking 'one of these days maybe...' Before that, to my recollection, it had been knocked and moved around at my mother’s house from drawer to closet to under the bed to drawer again for as long as I can remember. "This one," I said. "Isn't it yours?"

"Not mine," he laughs. "Mine is the Canon AE1 you've got stashed over there." (Uh, yeah, I knew that.) "I thought it was one of your old cameras," he continues. “That thing has been in mom and dad's house since I was a kid. I always thought it was yours from high school."

We passed it back and forth a little, laughed at how the parts rattled around inside and finally came to the conclusion that if it's not mine and it's not his then it must have been Dad's (who passed away in 1981). Dad always had a camera around, and we tried to recall as many different ones as we could, but since his death, we never knew what happened to any of them... til now. We had one and didn't know it.

A couple of nights after bro heads back for Oklahoma and the farm, I broke out the screw drivers and popped the top off the little Retinette. Parts fell out on the table... several parts… tiny little parts. With close inspection by my middle-aged eyes, none of them seemed to be broken. The fact is, a screw had backed out of the film advance linkage and they'd just come loose, trapped inside. With a little trial and error, all the parts returned to their original positions and the Prontor shutter fired again.

Where's this camera been? In every nook and cranny of my mother's house[s] for 30+ years. A test roll has now been loaded and in a couple of days we'll see if banging around in a drawer or sitting in the top of my mother's closet all that time has hurt Dad's Kodak Retinette 1A.

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Old 02-21-2006   #32
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A few years ago Dad sent the Alpa Model 5 he bought the year I was born; the Model 6 he purchased a few years later. God only know where my Contax I's have been (all mid-thirties era cameras) or any of the others, for that matter. My 9d has been with me since age thirteen; the Rollei 35SE since college. Damn near anything I own will get thrown in the tank bag and go wherever it is I'm headed to; usually the South or Southwest US and often on an Iron Butt excursion.
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Old 02-22-2006   #33
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My Contax IIIa belonged to my Grandfather. He bought it in Germany when he was visiting my father who was in the service in Oberammergau, mid 1950's. He worked as an engineer for Standard Steel at the time of purchase and lived in Genoa, Italy. They(grandfather, grandmother and my aunt) then moved to Valenciennes, France. After that--Taipai (what was then Formosa, now Taiwan) and finally, to Buenos Aires, Argentina. I still have his old address label in the case with their Beunos Aires address. He died when I was 3 in Florence, KY USA. So I never knew him, but love that I have his camera. My dad also has some old slides from Taipai and other travels that he took with the camera. I have not seen them in a long time, but might have to dig them up next time I am home for a visit. I would also love to visit all the places he lived and track down his old addresses. Might be a fun photo project.

I also have my dads Contessa that he bought at the same time. He has tons of great slides that he shot with the camera dating from his time in the service up through the arrival of me and my brother. Every Christmas we pull them out and look at them.

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Old 10-30-2006   #34
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I wish I knew where my IIIa has been all the 70 years prior my ownership. The evilbay seller told me it was exposed in a shop since the end of WWII, before that he can't tell. I believe him as it is quite in great shape for its 70th birthday, the serial number date it from 1936!
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Old 10-30-2006   #35
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I think most of my old cameras were owned by a blacksmith, who used them as anvils.
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Old 10-30-2006   #36
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Interesting thread, and indeed I AM interested in the history and prior travels of used gear I acquire. Sometimes there's a sticker or two inside the film chamber or film door with the name of the original retailer or indicating a repair shop and date of repair. I have an old Pentax ESII with a sticker saying the equipment was distributed and serviced by McQueen Sales Co Ltd Toronto-Montreal-Vancouver, Date 12-76. I record information about my own purchases so I know where they came from immediately prior. And a lot of my cameras have a sticker indicating service at my local shop.

My Dad was a civilian engineer for the Navy, and after WWII he was sent several times to Japan on business. He'd bring back gifts, and usually a new camera for himself. A Petri 7s was one, and an Olympus Pen FT with a couple lenses a later time. I have this gear now, and a Welmy Six that was probably an earlier Japan purchase.

I'm sure this may apply to some cameras too, but military small arms can have very interesting histories, tracked through proof markings and serial numbers as well as personal remembrances of their owners. For instance, a Spanish pistol made Dec 1943 in a numbered batch sold on contract to Bulgaria, but with German army acceptance markings from the office in southern France... what's up with that?

The history of an item carries a lot of interest especially to the collector...
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Old 10-30-2006   #37
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Great thread! Reading the stories of these cameras is fascinating. My Bessa R doesn't have such a great lineage, though it has been to 14 U.S. states as well as Mexico and Belize. I do know the 50mm Nokton I got used has been to China and Japan as well. There are some great stories here. Thanks to all for sharing what they know.
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Old 07-27-2007   #38
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A fella that's around 50ish walked up to me at church last week and said, "I've got something for you" and handed me a camera in case. "It belonged to my dad's aunt," he said. "She used it, but never married and didn't have kids, so she gave it to my dad. I don't think he ever used it and gave it to me a long time ago and I don't even know how to work it. So you might as well have it."

It's a Kalimar A. I thought it might be fun to clean it up, run a roll through it and show the guy some pics from his great aunt's camera. But so far, I haven't found anything on the camera that works. I guess too long with no exercise has kind of seized things up a bit. Three generations in the same family and it winds up in my pile.

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Old 07-28-2007   #39
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I wish I knew where my cameras have been. It's something I think of quite often, actually.

All were purchsed here in Japan, so I guess they've all been around here. Does anyone know of anyway to trace TLR serial #s?

I know the only history of two of my cameras: my K-1000 - It was bought new for me in college by my dad for a photo class. It came with me to Japan 2 or 3 times in 1997 and 1998. After that it sat idle until March this year. It is the camera that got me back into film, so it sits on my desk right next to me

The other is my Rollei 35. It was bought at the Harvard Coop on sale for $100 in 1974 by my mom (before I was born.) She didn't like using it so it sat around until I picked it up and brought it here in 2000. Since last month it's been with me almost everyday.

Sorry, no war or rafting stories behind my cameras

The only hint I have, is the name of the original owner of my Canon P, written on the cover. I suppose I could try tracking the person down ...
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Old 07-28-2007   #40
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I had a Canonet I bought from it's first owner. He bought it when he was 16, and used it almost everywhere he went. Now, he's a full time photographer. I regret selling that camera, but I wasn't using it at all, so I guess it's for the best.

I also have another classic, a Leica IIIf that was a IIIc. Apparently, it's one of the first batch of Leicas that came out of Germany post war, so it was built around 1946. I bought it from KEH two weeks back, so I don't know where it's been, but judging from the condition, it was well used by it's previous owner. I just wish it could talk so as to tell me it's history. But before that, I'm going to ensure it's going to be well taken care of and used for the next 60 years of it's life.

Samuel
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