Monday, June 18, 2012

Christmas 1947

I've been trolling the web looking for the production dates of the Ansco Panda.  Present day references to the little box camera assign the production dates as somewhere between 1939 and 1960.  My guess at this point is that the camera was ordered into production right after WWII in 1946.  The earliest ad for a Panda I have found comes from the December 1947 edition of Boys' Life Magazine.

Today, somewhat by accident, I came across a set of pictures at Flickr from a Panda that were made that same year.  Laird Scott and his brother, Dick, each found a Panda under the Christmas tree, and they immediately made a set of pictures with their new cameras.  The photos are of quite remarkable quality and, since each boy had one, they also managed to capture pictures of both cameras.  Being able to associate photographs with a specific vintage camera is quite a rare event, and to find a set of such good quality that documents the camera as well is really bucking the odds.


Jim said...

What a wonderful set of photos that fellow got with his Christmas Panda! I looked up the address of the fellow's childhood home on Google Maps and slipped into street view to find that the years have not been kind to the home.

Mike said...

Isn't it amazing the results those two got the first time they had a camera in their hands? I was shooting my Baby Brownie at about the same time, but there's no way I would show the pictures here even if I still had them.

robert said...

Great find and those photos look like a page from Jean Shepherd's Christmas Story.

Mike said...

I somehow missed the whole Jean Shepherd phenomenon, in spite of the fact that his story lines resonate so
closely with my own childhood experience. Time I caught up on him. Luckily, adulthood provides opportunities to rectify mistakes and omissions of our past.