Historic photography auction gives collectors plenty to smile about

This week, American auction house Everard & Company released the results from their online auction of what is thought to be one of the biggest private collections of cameras and related materials.

The collection belonged to the late Eaton S. Lothrop Jr, one of premier collectors of cameras and related memorabilia materials going back nearly half a century.

In his lifetime, Lothrop Jr was one of the most respected and knowledgeable experts on photographic cameras, with his collection dating to as early as 1870.

In 1968, he founded the first periodical on collectible cameras with the Photographic Collectors Newsletter. Lothrop later went on to lecture and write numerous publications on the subject of rare photographic cameras.

In the early 1970's, Beaumont Newhall, George Eastman House's Director,  asked Mr. Lothrop to research their camera collection with A Century of Cameras published in 1973 alongside an expanded edition in 1982.

More recently, Lothrop contributed to The History of Photography as seen through the Spira Collection (2001).

The Eagle Camerascope
sold for $2,700

The Lothrop Collection consisted of nearly 400 lots of cameras and related material - particularly  highlighting his particular fascination with rare box and amateur cameras.

The auction featured cameras from America, France, Germany, England and numerous other nations which attracted interest from bidders across the globe.

Highlights of the sale included a Montauk Hand Camera, which smashed its estimated price of £130-260 ($200-400) to eventually reach £900 ($1,400).

Elsewhere, an Eagle Camerascope sold for £1,800 ($2,700),  three times the high end estimated price of £600 ($900) that had been set.

More impressive still, was the Edison Tropical Stereoscopic Hand camera, which was auctioned for over £2,200 ($3,300) on the day.

Yet it was the French made Jide Ferrortype Camera, which sold for the highest amount. With an estimated price of £260-400 ($400- 600), a bidding war ensued, with the rare camera eventually selling for more than £2,900 ($4,400).

The price was over seven times the high end estimate placed on the lot.

As a whole, the auction was highly successful with around 98% of the lots on offer sold.

Everard & Company are now in the process of accumulating international consignments for their next sale of rare cameras which will take place in conjunction with the second part of the Lothrop Jr Collection.

This second Lothrop Jr collection will consist of photographs, literature and research materials, and will take place in October.



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