a modest merger

The formation of Zeiss-Ikon in 1926 from DB Tubbs’ book on Zeiss Ikon cameras up to 1939 published by HOVE in 1977

Toronto. In 1729, an anonymous article called, “A Modest Proposal” was written by Jonathan Swift, known for his satirical tales like, “Gulliver’s Travels“. The article was also intended to be a satirical piece but was taken as very serious when released.

In the early 1920s, German inflation was astronomical. Stabilization set in in late 1923 following dire action by the government. At the time, the photographic industry was rampant with numerous small companies fighting for the market. Many of those companies merged a number of times before the mighty Carl Zeiss organization (most German cameras used Zeiss lenses) stepped in and in 1926 formed Zeiss-Ikon based in Dresden. The first task facing Zeiss-Ikon was to rationalize the industry and whittle down its many competing camera models.

Prior to the weighty tomb, “Zeiss and Photography” published in 2015 by Friesens of Manitoba, and written by an American, Larry Gubas, D. B Tubbs of Great Britain wrote a book called, “Zeiss Ikon Cameras 1926~1939” published in 1977 by Hove Camera Foto Books of East Sussex in the UK.

The Tubbs book included the above chart showing the mergers that culminated in the formation of Zeiss-Ikon. After WW2, three camera manufacturers emerged: Leitz of Wetzlar, Rollei of Braunschweig, … and Zeiss-Ikon which had been relocated to Stuttgart as Dresden had been flattened during WW2.

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