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Collectibles-General (Antiques)/Questions Answered by Expert David Silver

SubjectDate Asked
Theda Bara photograph10/28/2016
  Q: wondering if you had any insight on this photograph? Any value here?
  A: Theda Bara (real name Theodosia Burr Goodman, 1885-1955) was one of the most famous actresses of the ...
Bell & Howell Director Series8/8/2016
  Q: I received the above item from my grandmother before she past in 1981. I am curious as to the value ...
  A: Other than the obvious sentimental value to you and your family, I'm afraid it's essentially a ...
19th century photos8/6/2016
  Q: I have a photo album from the 19th century that came to me from my wife's grandmother, who was born ...
  A: Very, very tough topic... You asked: "How do I go about identifying the other people in this ...
1920's Cornu Ontoscope stereo camera9/16/2015
  Q: David Thanks for the swift response. I have taken a couple of pictures which I will try to attach ...
  A: Yes, it's a stereo camera, for making 3D pictures. This is an Ontoscope, a very typical European ...
Ellis Tilter Camera tilter for tripod6/11/2015
  Q: I am trying to get any history on an item I have. It is an Ellis Tilter attachment for a tripod. I ...
  A: There's really no history to provide. It's actually a very generic unit. I'm not specifically ...
Question about camera5/4/2015
  Q: I'm a camera collector and recently came across one of these small cameras. I've been told it is a ...
  A: What you have is generically referred to as a Yen camera. They were very common and popular in Japan ...
Lincoln photograph4/20/2015
  Q: Silver, Thank you for taking the time to assist with my question.I recently acquired a large framed ...
  A: First, what I *can* tell you about the image...this is definitely a copy of a fairly famous portrait ...
Question about antique camera9/28/2014
  Q: I recently picked up an Arnold Linco Flex at my local antique store. I haven't been able to find too ...
  A: What you have is actually a Karma-Flex 4x4 Model II (also marketed as simply the Karma-Flex 2), a ...
Old picture/case4/29/2014
  Q: I have inherited this old picture in a little case. I am not sure what kind of old photo this is. ...
  A: This appears to be an ambrotype. An ambrotype is a photograph made with the "wet plate" process ...
#2 Rolleiflex Automat MX camera3/30/2014
  Q: Mr. Silver - Here is another camera that I have recently inherited. Can you please give me some ...
  A: This is the very best of all the things you've shown me. This is a Rolleiflex Automat MX ...
info request on camera3/29/2014
  Q: I was hoping you could provide me with some. What year it was made ect. thanks
  A: The Stamax Candid Camera is a classic example of a cheap 1930's amateur "minicam"; a very simple ...
Spartus Box Camera2/27/2014
  Q: David, I have a spartus box camera labeled "full-vue" on the bottom of the face. It takes size 120 ...
  A: The Spartus Full-Vue is a simple plastic box camera, with enormous reflex viewfinder on top, made by ...
Unknown camera model2/22/2014
  Q: I have an old photo camera that has been in my family from the early 1920 or 1930. Actually, it was ...
  A: You have a Pokarelle, a simple amateur box camera, made by Balda-Werke of Germany from 1929 to 1933. ...
Antique Light Meter12/8/2012
  Q: Mr. Silver - I have an old Bewi light meter on which all the text is in German. I have attached a ...
  A: Your Bewi light meter from Germany is a classic example of what are known as "extinction" meters. ...
Do your recognize this picture5/12/2012
  Q: My uncle found this picture in his home. Do you recognize this picture?
  A: Well, you're asking an expert in photography, and this picture isn't photographic in origin! ...
An antique camera & film named "Camera"7/28/2011
  Q: Seeking info; mostly age? Sandy Stilwell
  A: This is a very nice example of a "Yen" box camera, a simple form of amateur box camera made in great ...
cameras and lenses2/1/2011
  Q: I have 3 boxes of all kinds of cameras and lenses. I don't know where to begin. I have made a list ...
  A: I can probably help you evaluate and then sell the equipment. Can you send the list to me by ...
leica IIIF red dial?1/15/2011
  Q: I BELIEVE THAT I HAVE A LEICA IIIF RED DIAL CAMERA FROM AROUND THE 1950'S. ON THE TOP OF IT, IT ...
  A: Serial number 600080 is actually a Leica IIIf "black dial", a traditional 35mm coupled rangefinder ...
Manufactured by J.H. Kennedy, St. Paul. MINN.12/29/2010
  Q: I have this here. It does have broken part. but I don't know what it is, or if it has any value, or ...
  A: I have no idea why this would be marked as manufactured by "J.H. Kennedy" of St. Paul. Minnesota, as ...
leica and Fujica5/28/2010
  Q: I haven't a clue where to begin with model numbers and prices for these pieces I inherited. I have ...
  A: Your Leica is a classic, a very high quality and valuable 35mm coupled rangefinder camera from the ...
1892 Folding Rochester8/10/2009
  Q: I have this camera in EXCELLENT, like new condition with a dozen or so attachments, plates, etc. One ...
  A: Yes, fine examples of the Folding Rochester generally sell in the $1000 range, easily five to six ...
Old Kodak Camera7/20/2009
  Q: I have what I believe to be a NO. 3-A folding pocket kodak, model B-4. What can you tell me about ...
  A: The No. 3A Folding Pocket Kodak is a traditional folding bellows camera, made by Eastman Kodak from ...
Leica for Sale5/20/2009
  Q: I have a black dial IIIF that I'm trying to sell and i'd like to get an idea of what its worth. ...
  A: From that serial number, you do indeed have a Leica IIIf "black dial", a traditional 35mm coupled ...
antique camera12/29/2008
  Q: I have an old #2 Stereo Brownie camera. The little eye piece is here but loose. Otherwise it seems ...
  A: The No. 2 Stereo Brownie is a simple amateur folding bellows camera, made by Eastman Kodak from 1905 ...
What are "union cases" for antique photographs?3/5/2008
  Q: "Union cases", the sort of plastic cases used to hold antique photographs...how did they get their ...
  A: Neither! Union cases were invented in the 1850's, they represent the very first successful use of ...

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David Silver

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Expertise

I'm an expert on all types of antique and classic CAMERAS, vintage PHOTOGRAPHS, and the HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY. Everything from ancient box cameras to modern single-lens-reflex; from simple Kodaks to sophisticated Leica and Nikon; from glass plates and roll film to movie and 35mm; from daguerreotypes and tintypes to the black & white images by the 20th century masters. I can identify and appraise, explain techniques and processes, offer insights on restoration and preservation, and provide guidelines for buying and selling.

Experience

I've been a professional photographer and a student of the history of photography for over 30 years. During that time my collection of vintage cameras and photographic paraphernalia has grown beyond 2000 significant pieces. I've published nearly 70 articles in the field, including 16 in the popular "Buying Classic Cameras" series for PHOTO SHOPPER MAGAZINE from 1995 to 1997, I'm currently a contributing editor for CAMERA SHOPPER MAGAZINE and McKEOWN'S PRICE GUIDE TO ANTIQUE AND CLASSIC CAMERAS, and I've written numerous entries for WORLD BOOK ENCYCLOPEDIA. Portions of my collection have been displayed in museums and special exhibits in the past two decades, and many of the items were photographed as illustrations for books. In 1985 I founded the International Photographic Historical Organization (InPHO), which eventually evolved into its intended purpose as the best first resource for information on the history of photography. I'm also a founding member of several e-mail forums dedicated to specialized areas of photography, and I'm the moderator of the Internet Directory of Camera Collectors (IDCC), which remains the largest and most successful such group in the world. For more information about the International Photographic Historical Organization and its many services, please visit its web pages at:

http://www.photographyhistory.com




Education/Credentials
BA and MA in anthropology

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