SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
The Shorpy Archive
6000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
Join and Share

Social Shorpy

Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Daily e-mail updates:

Member Photos

Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

Colorized Photos

Colorized photos submitted by members.

About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600

Home Movies: 1922

Home Movies: 1922

November 13, 1922. Mrs. Ed B. McLean and children. View full size. National Photo Company Collection. Who can identify the camera for us?

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Mitchell confirmed

The camera is a Mitchell Standard "rackover." The door latch and viewfinder are give-aways that it is an early model of this professional 35mm camera. They were used for decades, all the way into the "Star Wars" era and beyond... eventually getting re-manufactured with reflex viewing by Doug Fries in the early 1980's.

Note that she is "hand cranking" the camera - a common practice even after bulky motors were introduced. A brass flywheel attached to the movement made the "eight to one" drive shaft very smooth and the images sharp (2 cranks per second was the standard for 16 FPS silent movies)

The wooden "sticks" and aluminum "straight head" were also very effective; wood absorbs vibration for a rock solid foundation. These are "standard" sized legs (a pair of "sawed-off" legs would have been move convenient.)

You can be certain that this set-up was quite heavy to move around - my guess is that Mrs. McLean was one of the subjects of the family movie, and the cinematographer posed this shot as a "production still."

McLean, as in McLean, Virginia?

McLean, as in McLean, Virginia? Any connection?


Never mind the Camera

Ed. B Mclean was the owner/publisher of the Washington Post in 1922, and his wife was Evalyn Walsh McLean, who became a fixture of Washington society. Among Mrs. Mclean's other possessions was the Hope Diamond. The bulk of their life was so sad, it's nice to see her at an apparently happy time.

Mitchell Standard

I believe that is a Mitchell Standard camera, and a fairly early serial number, at that. According to my source, the Mitchell was first sold in 1921, and they sold 32 of them between then and June of 1923.

Other sources used to research this:

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2018 Shorpy Inc.