Anthony's Victor camera is a traditional front
focusing field view made of polished mahogany with
either lacquered brass or nickel hardware. Victor
cameras appeared in Anthony’s “amateur
equipment” catalogues and sold in outfits that
included a canvas bag, plateholder and tripod.
During the 1890s, 4-1/4 x 6-1/2 inch versions were
offered as premiums by the Youth's Companion
magazine for new subscriptions -- a surprisingly nice
This is a 4x5 inch example (the smallest model
offered) with polished mahogany body and brass
hardware with draw file finish. The brass hardware
on this camera indicates it is an early model
because later versions often had nickel plated
Unlike the camera, the Anthony marked lens is quite
rare and merits a comment or two. It is sometimes
improperly referred to as a semi-rectilinear (a really
awful asymmetrical rapid rectilinear design) that
combines achromatic and rectilinear formulas. Okay
... that might be a bit esoteric but it appeals to my
desire for early photographic oddities.
In summary, the lens was an effort to be good at
landscapes and portraits. But overall it pretty much
stinks at everything it does. Yet the concept is
bizarre and cool. I’m unsure if the lens is original to
the camera, yet here it is - making the camera as a
whole so dang cute.
A complete outfit including the camera, dry plate
holder, lens, tripod and canvas case sold for $16.00
(about $408 in 2013 currency).