Chambre Noire Série III B

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The Mackenstein Chambre Noire Série III B camera was manufactured between c.1888 and c.1915. It’s a large foldable tailboard camera for 18 x 24 cm glass plate negatives. The lens panel can be exchanged with a panel with one lens to use the camera as a conventional camera.


Year of introduction:c. 1888
Year of manufacture:c. 1895
Type:Tailboard camera
Serial number:13616
Negative type:Glass
Negative format:18 x 24 cm
Lens:Two Rapid Aplanat No. 1 (Manufactured by Mackenstein?)
Serial number lens:None
Lens aperture:6, 12, 24, 48, 96, 192, 384
Focus:By moving the plate holder
Dimensions (L x W x H):29 x 10 x 20 cm (folded)
Construction:Walnut and copper
Other features:The top contains a nameplate with: H. Mackenstein Paris ~ Constructeur. The name of the manufacturer is also engraved in the wood on the front side.
The inside of the camera contains a removable septum.

Hermann Mackenstein
Hermann Josef Hubert Mackenstein (1846–1924) was born in Doveren, Westphalia (present-day Germany). He learned the trade of carpentry and left for Paris in 1867 to improve his skills. He started manufacturing cameras at the end of the 1870s. His company moved to 15, Rue des Carmes around 1900, and a store was opened in 1902 at 7, Avenue de l’Opéra. Mackenstein’s company became a leading manufacturer of cameras in Paris. Mackenstein manufactured conventional cameras, stereo cameras and stereoscopes. In 1914, the international situation deteriorated, leading to the outbreak of the First World War. Mackenstein was forced to fled to the neutral Netherlands in 1915. He returned to Paris after the war, where he died in 1924. His company was continued by two of his employees, Henri Suffize and Léon Molitor.
The complete story of Mackenstein