CDV of Man Posed with Camera, Plus

Lot of 2, featuring uncredited CDV of a man standing beside a large, wet plate camera, which appears to be at least imperial-sized. The subject, who may be a mariner, holds the lens cover while he looks directly at the photographer. 

A savvy customer has shared that the camera depicted in the CDV closely follows a late-1850s to 1860s French wet-plate build pattern. The lens is a Jamin & Darlot (Paris, France) of the same timeline. The clue to the lens maker is seeing two brass knobs; one is located at the 12 o’clock position. It is a short, barrel locking knob mounted radially (perpendicular) to the barrel. The second knob, at 7 o’clock position, is a tangentially mounted rack & pinion for focusing. These two brass knobs are unique to Jean Theodor Jamin’s and Alphonse Darlot’s Petzval-type Cone Centralisateur designs (first introduced in 1855). The overall optical and barrel construction is a “combination” design; meaning it can be set up as a portrait lens and then taken apart, changed and reassembled for landscape work. Additionally, the man is actually gripping a turned wood handle mounted in the center of the brass lens cap.

Accompanied by postcard with photograph of a photographer standing outside with his camera, which rests on a tripod, enhanced with an illustrated scene. 

The same customer noted that the postcard’s camera is a dry-plate, American red-bellows self-casing design. It’s difficult to see the shutter and camera build details but the design is likely 1896 to very early 1900s (no later than 1910). The leather covered, self-casing build pattern first appeared on George Eastman’s 1890 No.4 Folding Camera and was widely copied by many makers throughout the 1890s. FWIW, converters were made so that dry plate holders could be adapted for cut-film use.


CDV in very good condition overall, light, even toning. 

Postcard with minor soiling. Image has faded a bit. 

Estimate: $400 - $600
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium

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