The University of Tulsa’s Department of Special Collections and University Archives is much more than just a place where rare books and manuscripts are stored. In our mission to be the most effective and efficient research tool we can be for our users which include students, faculty, the local community, and scholars from around the world, our department collects thousands of artifacts of great cultural and historical importance. For example, our department holds a number of collections that deal with photography and within these collections there are many rare cameras, most in working condition.
The Maxine Zarrow camera collection (2012.066) contains a number of vintage cameras. For example, this collection has a rare Polaroid Land Camera, Model 95A (below).
In addition, this collection also has (from the left): a Leica CL, a Agfa PO16 Clipper, a Kodak Six-20 Brownie Jr., a Rollei 35, a Filmo Auto Load movie camera, and Sears Flip-flash 110. All of these are precursors to modern digital cameras.
However, some of our oldest cameras come from the Bob McCormack camera collection (2008.027). Two of the most prominent examples of this collection are view cameras, circa 1920 and 1950. These cameras are characterized by a flexible bellows that forms a light-tight seal between two adjustable standards, one of which holds a lens, and the other a viewfinder or a photographic film holder.
The University of Tulsa’s Department of Special Collections and University Archives is proud to serve as the repository of these valuable pieces of history and contemporary culture.