"An entirely new series of folding hand-cameras
introduced this year is the Ascot Series, made by Messrs.
E. & H.T. Anthony & Co. of New York and Chicago. Their
special features are extreme portability, fineness of
construction, and their adaptability for either plates or
cartridge films as the worker may desire." (The
Photo-Miniature. June 1899)
After years of searching, a fine 4x5 inch format Anthony
Ascot Cycle No.1 joins my 5 x 7 inch No.2 model. Each camera
is rare and having the pair even more so.
As with the No.2, the No.1 shown here is unknown to most
collectors. As background, from mid-1899 to 1900 the E. &
H.T. Anthony Company created a series of folding cameras
under the name "Ascot." All were made of leather covered
mahogany bodies with brass hardware. It is believed the
cameras were manufactured at the Scovill & Adams
Of the twenty models offered, only two 'cycle' versions had
internally mounted shutters. What is surprising is that
Anthony made 20 camera models in barely a year. The Ascot
series was then sold to a group of four companies that
merged to form the Rochester Optical and Camera Company.
In 1899, the Ascot Cycle No.1 outfit sold for $8.00 which is
about $269 when adjusted for 2021 inflation.
Ascot Cycle No.1, c.1899 E. & H.T. Anthony & Company, NY.
4 x 5 inch Ascot No.1: Red Leather bellows and bed mounted
reflex finder. Simple TIB shutter mounted inside wood front
standard. This is a cycle style design, meaning camera and
plateholders are stored in a side-by-side case. The case can
be strapped to a bicycle's top bar.
Comparison of 4 x 5 Ascot No.1
and 5 x 7 Ascot No.2 cameras.
1899 Anthony advertisement for the Ascot Cycle No.1