Pacific Rim Camera
An online guide to collectable cameras and related stuff
5x7 wet plate camera with Harrison 4-tube "Gem" lens set.
John Stock 5x7 Wet-plate Camera. - The John Stock Company was quite small and short-lived. Many of their cameras, including this one, were manufactured under license by the American Optical Company. This camera was produced in 1863, in the middle of the wet-plate era. Technically, it was a studio portrait camera used to produce tintypes, cabinet cards and CDVs, but with multiple tubes and a shifting back, it could be used to produce smaller 'bon-tons' and 'gems' as well. The camera is shown with a 4-tube gem set mounted. Not shown are the portrait lenses, or the 9-tube gem set that came with it. Depending on the lenses, shifts and masks, this camera could produce 1, 2, 4, 8, 9 or 18 images on a single 5x7 plate. Finding any wet-plate equipment would be a rare treat, or a privilege that was dearly paid for.
Text and photos courtesy of Milan Zahorcak.