Sliding Box - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Sliding Box Camera

Image of Sliding Box Camera

Lens:
Petzval type lens by Colas. The lens is engraved "L.F. Colas élève de Lerebours Paris". A removable cup fits into the lens hood, the rear of the cup has a fitting to hold washer stops. This would be used when the lens is divided. Serial no. 1091 .

Construction:
Polished wood (possibly walnut or elm) with dovetail joints.

Format:
5" x 5" plates held in dark-slides.

Focusing:
Sliding box movement and rack and pinion movement on lens. To c. 2 feet. The pinion is now missing.

With:
Dark slide.

This is a typical French sliding box camera made in the mid 1850s. In England, Colas lenses were sold by Elisha Mander.

References & Notes:
Lon. Gaz. 1/12/1854, p. 3931. Lon. Gaz. 3/8/1866, p. 4386. Lon. Gaz. 4/1/1870, p. 97. Phot. Notes 1/1/1858, advertisement by Mander.

Further Information:
A Louis Ferdinand Colas (b.1820, d.1878) was working in London from the 1840s, he is not listed as a lens maker but, for a time, was shown as a Daguerreotypist. Possibly there is a family connection between the lens maker and the Colas working in London. Francois Auguste Mouqué (b.1796) was working as an engraver at 55 Fleet St. from 1845 - 1848 he was then at 105 Fleet St. between 1849 - 1850.
Ferdinand Colas (paper box maker) was at 55 Fleet St in 1848.
The partnership between Francois Auguste Mouqué and L.F. Colas (fancy box manufacturers and Daguerreotype artists of 105 Cheapside) was dissolved in 1854. the partnership was formed around 1850.
L.F. Colas continued as a photographer at 105 Cheapside until around 1860.
L.F. Colas (millboard and pasteboard box maker of Westmorland Bldgs Aldersgate and 28 Hilltop Crescent Camden Town, previously at 57 Cheapside) was made bankrupt in 1866.
L.F. Colas (fancy box maker of 32 Norfolk Rd. Dalston and 40½ Monkwell St., previously at 121 and 112 Fore St.) was made bankrupt in 1869.

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