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His Own Devices: 1900

His Own Devices: 1900

Circa 1900. "A.W. McCurdy machine." The inventor Arthur Williams McCurdy (1856-1923), a contemporary of Alexander Graham Bell. 5x7 inch glass negative from the C.M. Bell portrait studio in Washington, D.C. View full size.


Apparatus For Developing Photographic Roll Films

Mr. Arthur W. McCurdy, a Canadian and for a time an employee and photographer of Bell, obtained at least 5 separate patents for equipment related to film and film developing.

The photograph illustrates his “apparatus for developing photographic roll-films, patent # 647900 issued April 17, 1900.”

“The object of my invention is to provide a compact portable apparatus in which a photographic film may be placed, developed, and treated without the use of a dark room and without the necessity of opening the box closure during the various steps of developing and fixing the film.”

The purpose of the hose:

“To provide for the introduction of the necessary liquids into the apparatus, a threaded opening is formed in one side near the base and into this threaded opening I screw a coupling to which is attached a rubber or other flexible pipe or hose.”

McCurdy sold or assigned this and his other patents to the Eastman Kodak Company and his film developing apparatus became known as the “Kodak Developing Machine.”

Taking photographs of devices receiving patents from the US Patent Office in Washington, DC, must have been a prominent part of Mr. Bell’s business

Film Tank?

I believe this is it.

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