Toronto. Collecting photographica a half century ago was relatively inexpensive. Few cameras were valued highly. Many bargains turned up in garage sales. Few books were available on the history of photography or cameras. There was no Ebay. No internet. One member in the early 1970s, owner of the Magic Lantern store on Queen West, said he went throughout Southern Ontario visiting every photoshop and studio to buy up any old photos they had. All stock for his store and his tables at the fair.
One thing became obvious, though. Cameras were saved but not the original packaging or instructions. Finding an old camera with its original box and papers raised its value making even inexpensive cameras more valuable – often the box or instructions were worth more than the camera itself to avid collectors.
Today, the peak interest in cameras has faded, there are books galore, and tons of internet sites making research far easier. Also, as cameras changed hands many times, they increased in market value. If you like the modest cameras shown here and their boxes, come to our mid March auction on Sunday the 15th in the Legion Hall in Long Branch where they will go under the hammer – remember there is no charge, free parking, food and beverages, and the ambience and camaraderie of fellow photographers and collectors. What could be better?