16 Incredible Images Shot with Early Portable Cameras
A gallery of readers’ photographs shows how the portable camera captured our world.
Just Like the Big Kids
Courtesy Sue Vorpagel
When my parents and I were picking blueberries with their friends in northern Michigan in 1938, someone gave me this Brownie camera so I could take photos. I was very proud! Little did I know, there was no film in it and someone else was snapping my picture. I was 4 years old. – Susie Vorpagel, Petoskey, MI. Check out these hilarious baby photos that will make you laugh out loud.
Shadows and Light
Courtesy Ray Mayo
My first camera, a loaner from my mom, was a square box held at waist level; you looked into a window to find your subject. Years later I owned a Kodak Brownie 44A with flash attachment. Finally, I bought a Nikon F2 35 mm SLR with several lenses, and installed a darkroom for black-and-white. These two photos were taken in Nashville, Tennessee, in the 1960s. – Raymon Mayo, San Antonio, TX
Smile for the Camera
courtesy Carol Gallo
When I graduated from eighth grade at Fourth Avenue Grammar School in Yuma, Arizona, in 1947, my parents took me out for ice cream and then gave me a Brownie Reflex camera. That’s me, left, in my graduation dress. I tried some trick photography by carefully positioning my two friends Bonnie Woods and Betty Prather, right. – Carol Gallo, Marana, AZ. Check out these vintage kid photos that prove childhood hasn’t changed all that much.
Courtesy Rev. David M. Poland
We were all-American kids, in sixth grade at Stanley Hall School in Evansville, Indiana, in 1963. From left, Jimmy Kappenman, Frank Johnson, Christopher Clayton and Eric Johnson; with the pigskin, Ernie Rogers and David Wilder. I inherited the small brown box camera from my grandpa. – Rev. David M. Poland, Lansdale, PA
Focused on the Family
Courtesy Cathy Streeter
I got a Polaroid Swinger in 1967 when I was 12 and took all the family photos. From left, is my brother Denny, 3, in his cowboy hat; Denny and I in 1972 in front of my first car; and my family at a campsite in Utah. – Cathy Streeter, Sheridan, WY. Much like these vintage snapshots, these arrestingly beautiful photos stand the test of time.