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Camera - Box Brownie Camera

From the Collection of Warrnambool and District Historical Society Inc. 2 Gilles Street (south of Merri St) Warrnambool Victoria

This is a rectangular-shaped black metal box. A metal clip acts as an opening and closing device for inserting a film. A yellow and black film is enclosed at one end of the box. A handle is on the top of the box and is attached by metal clips. There are several viewing panels on the box and a metal mechanism for winding the film. The box is scuffed and stained.
L 14 cm. W 7.5 cm. D 10 cm.
Object Registration
photography, household items, lyndoch, warrnambool, florence lake, warrnambool, olive o’donnell, warrnambool
Historical information
The Box Brownie camera was developed by Frank Brownell in the late 19th century. It was marketed by Eastman Kodak of U.S.A. and was a camera with a simple lens. It provided snapshots at a low cost and was the most widely-used camera by families in the first half of the 20th century. This item was the No. 2 model which was sold from 1901 to 1935. This item was given to Olive O’Donnell when she was ten years old. The donor was Miss Florence Lake of ‘Lyndoch’ in Warrnambool. She was noted for giving presents, usually at Christmas time, to the children of her employees and other children in the Warrnambool area. Olive O’Donnell’s father worked for Miss Lake for 45 years. The property of ‘Lyndoch’ near the mouth of the Hopkins River in Warrnambool was established by a Melbourne businessman, George Rolfe, late in the 19th century and Miss Lake was one of the two stepdaughters of George Rolfe who inherited the property. Miss Florence Lake built a house at Lyndoch which today forms part of the aged care facility established when the property was sold.
When Made
This camera is of interest for two reasons:
1. It is an example of the Box Brownie camera which was a very popular camera owned by many Australians in the first half of the 20th century.
2. It is an example of the type of present given to children by the Warrnambool philanthropist, Florence Lake. She resided at ‘Lyndoch’ and was well-known in the Warrnambool community in the 20th century.
Inscriptions & Markings
‘No 2 Brownie Model F Patented in U.S.A. Patents Pending.’
Last updated
16 Oct 2017 at 11:30AM