Rochester Optical Co.

Field View Cameras

 

Timeline of the Rochester Family of Companies
W. H. Walker & Co., Rochester, NY, 1881-1883
Rochester Optical Co., Rochester, NY, 1883-1899 (W.F. Carlton and H.B. Carlton)
1891:    Rochester Optical Co. continues under W.F. Carlton, but H.B. Carlton leaves to form Rochester Camera Mfg. Co.
Rochester Optical Co., Rochester, NY, 1883-1899 Rochester Camera Mfg. Co., Rochester, NY,  1891-1895
" Rochester Camera Co., Rochester, NY, 1895-1897
" Rochester Camera & Supply Co., Rochester, NY, 1897-1899
1899:    Merger of five companies, 1) the Rochester Optical Co., 2) the Rochester Camera & Supply Co., 3) the Western Camera Mfg. Co., 4) the Monroe & Gennert (the successor to the Monroe Camera Co., Rochester NY, and the G. Gennert Co., New York NY), and 5) the Ray Camera Co., Rochester NY, into the Rochester Optical & Camera Co.
Rochester Optical & Camera Co., Rochester, NY, 1899-1903
Rochester Optical Co., Rochester, NY, 1903-1907
Rochester Optical Division, EKC, 1907-1917

Rochester Optical Department, EKC, 1918-1922

 

     A complete history of the Rochester companies can be found at http://www.nwmangum.com/Kodak/Rochester.html

     The companies represented on this page had many names, but their ties were close and the view cameras were often similar.  The name Rochester Optical Co. can refer to two different incarnations: the 1883-1899 company or the 1903-1907 company, which was purchased by EKC in 1907.

     Of the companies in the Rochester family, Rochester Optical Co. (either incarnation) and Rochester Camera Mfg. Co. manufactured most of the wooden view cameras still with us.  Companies such as Western, Monroe, and Ray specialized in leather-covered hand and stand cameras.

Patents: Rochester cameras were marked with few patents compared to the great number on Anthony or Scovill cameras.
Aug. 31, 1886;

Scans of number of catalogs can be found here.  Scans of the Rochester Camera companies catalogs are here.

 

 The American Camera (c. 1890)
 
 American Challenge Swivel Bed Camera/Challenge Camera (c. 1881-1887)
 
tnrocamch5x8290b.jpg (7241 bytes)  American Challenge Wooden Bed Camera (c. 1883)
 
tnroccarlton6x8b076.jpg (16425 bytes)tnroccarlton6x8b076.jpg (16425 bytes)  Carlton (c. 1893-1903)
 
 Commodore Variation 1 (c. 1885-1886)
 
 Commodore Variation 2 (c. 1888)
 
 Cycle Poco Copying Camera (c. 1898-1899)
 
 Empire State Variation 1 (c. 1893-1897)
 
tnrocempirestate5x8b264.jpg (15826 bytes)tnrocempirestate5x8b264.jpg (15826 bytes)  Empire State Variation 2 (c. 1896-1902)
 
tnrocempirestate5x7b372.jpg (16029 bytes)tnrocempirestate5x7b372.jpg (16029 bytes)  Empire State Variation 3 (c. 1902-1915)
 
tnrocempirestateimproved6x8b345.jpg (10081 bytes)tnrocempirestateimproved6x8b345.jpg (10081 bytes)  Empire State Improved (c. 1902-1909+)
 
tnroexcelcat.jpg (5177 bytes)  Excelsior (c. 1885-1887)
 
tnrochestercameramfgfavorite6x8b184.jpg (15327 bytes)tnrochestercameramfgfavorite6x8b184.jpg (15327 bytes)  Favorite Variation 1 (Rochester Camera Mfg. Co.) (c. 1896)
 
 Favorite Variation 2 (Rochester Camera Co.) (c. 1897)
 
 Favorite Variation 3 (Rochester Camera & Supply Co.) (c. 1897-1900)
 
 Ideal Variation 1 (c. 1885-1891)
 
 Ideal Variation 1.5 (c. 1890)
 
tnrochesteropticalideal8x10a358.jpg (10824 bytes)
tnrochesteropticalideal8x10a358.jpg (10824 bytes)tnrochesteropticalideal8x10a358.jpg (10824 bytes)
tnrochesteropticalideal8x10a358.jpg (10824 bytes)
 Ideal Variation 2 (c. 1890-1897)
 
 Katch (c. 1893-1894)
 
tn234rocken6x8a.jpg (5784 bytes)tn234rocken6x8a.jpg (5784 bytes)  Kenwood (c. 1894-1899)
 
tnrockin.jpg (1747 bytes)tnrockin.jpg (1747 bytes)  King (c. 1897-1903)
 
tnrocmidgcat.jpg (6239 bytes)tnrocmidgcat.jpg (6239 bytes)  Midget Pocket Camera (c. 1890-1902)
 
tnrocmonitor8x10a087.jpg (17054 bytes)tnrocmonitor8x10a087.jpg (17054 bytes)  Monitor (c. 1894-1901)
 
 New Model Variation 1 (c. 1885-1891)
 
 New Model Variation 1.3 (c. 1885-1886)
 
 New Model Variation 1.5 (c. 1885-1886)
 
 New Model Variation 2 (c. 1886)
 
tnrocnew.jpg (1595 bytes)tnrocnew.jpg (1595 bytes)  New Model Variation 3 (c. 1890-1902)
 
 New Model Variation 4 (c. 1890's)
 
tnROCnewimpvar1cat,1886Codmanp8.jpg  New Model Improved Variation 1: Thin Frame (c. 1885)
 
tnronewimp5x8c.jpg (7604 bytes)  New Model Improved Variation 1.5: Cam Back (c. 1886 - c. 1887?)
 
tnronewimp5x8c.jpg (7604 bytes)  New Model Improved Variation 2: Thick Frame (1885 - c. 1899)
 
 New Model Stereo Variation 1(c. 1885)
 
 New Model Stereo Variation 2 (c. 1885-1899)
 
tnrockin.jpg (1747 bytes)  Omaha (probably the same as  ROC King) (c. 1897)
 
tnrochesteropticalpeerless6x8c348.jpg (11950 bytes)tnrochesteropticalpeerless6x8c348.jpg (11950 bytes)  Peerless View Camera Variation 1 (c. 1887-1894)
 
tnrochesteropticalpeerless6x8c348.jpg (11950 bytes)tnrochesteropticalpeerless6x8c348.jpg (11950 bytes)  Peerless View Camera Variation 2 (c. 1887-1894)
 
tnrocpremo8x10b233.jpg (17514 bytes)  Premo View Camera (1905 - 1912)
 
tnrospec.jpg (5221 bytes)tnrospec.jpg (5221 bytes)  Special (c. 1901-1902)
 
 The Rochester View Variation 1 (c. 1895-1901, Rochester Camera Mfg. Co. / Rochester Camera Co./ Rochester Camera & Supply Co.)
 
tnrocrocview6x8b081.jpg (15242 bytes)  The Rochester View Variation 2 (c. 1900-1901, Rochester Optical & Camera Co.)
 
 The Rochester View Variation 3 (c. 1902-1903, Rochester Optical & Camera Co.)
 
 The Rochester View Poco View Variation (c. 1904, Rochester Optical & Camera Co. made for the American Camera Mfg. Co.)
 
tnrocviewvar28x10a235.jpg (17307 bytes)tnrocviewvar28x10a235.jpg (17307 bytes)  The Rochester View Variation 4 (c. 1905-1918, Rochester Optical Co., Rochester Optical Div., EKC, Rochester Optical Dept., EKC)
 
 The Standard View (c. 1890-1899)
 
tnrocuniversal6x8c154.jpg (18219 bytes)tnrocuniversal6x8c154.jpg (18219 bytes)  Universal Variation 1 (c. 1890-1892)
 
tnrocuniversal6x8c154.jpg (18219 bytes)tnrocuniversal6x8c154.jpg (18219 bytes)  Universal Variation 2 (c. 1893-1904)