Stéréocycle Leroy Stereoscope

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A hand-held stereoscope for the unusual 8 x 16 cm stereo format. The viewer has a metal label with Stéréocycle Leroy, referring to the successful camera that was introduced in 1897 by Charles Bazin and Lucien Leroy. It is remarkable that this stereoscope bears the name Stéréocyle, because the camera that gave it its name was exclusively for the 6 x 13 cm format (with the exception of the Stéréocycle de Poche, which was designed for the 45 x 107 mm format). Apparently the name Stéréocycle guaranteed success, and Leroy also used it as a brand name for other products.

In this case, Leroy was only the seller of the stereoscope, because the device was manufactured by Mattey. Mattey was one of the few manufacturers that made stereoscopes for many “exotic” stereo formats. The following is a quote from Mattey’s 1922 catalogue:

Hand-held stereoscopes are manufactured for different formats, from 45 x 107 to 13 x 18. The most used formats, 45 x 107, 6 x 13 and 8.5 x 17, are, barring rare exceptions, always in stock; the other formats 7 x 13, 7 x 15, 9 x 14, 8 x 16, 11 x 15, 12 x 16.5, 13 x18, although in the catalogue, are not always in stock and are only manufactured on demand.


Year of introduction:c. 1910
Year of manufacture:c. 1910–c.1930
Serial number:None
Stereoview support:Glass and paper card stereoviews
Stereoview format:8 x 16 cm
Lens focussing:Yes
Inter-ocular adjustment:No
Eyepiece blinders:No
Dimensions (L x W x H):18 x 14 x 10.5 cm
Other features:Metal plate with Stéréocycle Leroy – 41, Rue du Rocher, Paris

Mattey was one of the leading manufacturers of stereoscopes in France. The company offered the widest range of stereoscopes of all manufacturers. The company was founded in 1872, but its expansion began with the establishment of Société Mattey père et fils on 31 December 1902. The names behind the company were André Élie Victor Mattey (1844–1919), and his son Albert Georges Mattey (1873–1940). Mattey’s business grew through acquisitions. The most important was the acquisition of Maison Legendre in 1902, which set the foundation for Mattey’s stereoscope business.

Société Mattey père et fils was dissolved on 1 January 1912, and the company was continued by Albert Georges as Stéréoscopes A. Mattey. The company was located at 208, Rue Saint-Maur in Paris from 1906 but moved to 15, Rue Clavel in 1936. After the Second World War, the company continued as Société des Anciens Établissements A. Mattey. Mattey’s products were also branded Unis France, a collective trademark to guarantee the French origin of high-quality products, made by different companies.
The complete story of Mattey

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