Dick Tracy

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The Dick Tracy is a small bakelite camera for 127 film, made c.1947 by Seymour Products Co, using a 1938 design by Jack Galter[1]. The camera was sold in a red cardboard box illustrated with the Dick Tracy character using the camera and the improbable claim, "America's most popular-priced precision-made camera!"[2]

A printed ad from the 1950s lists the camera complete with a film developing kit for $4.98 USD[3]. According to Dick Tracy collector Larry Doucet, this camera in working condition may be worth anywhere from $20 to $45 USD alone and original packaging is worth another $20 USD.[4]

The same camera with an alternate faceplate was marketed as the Brenda Starr Cub Reporter camera.

Variations

  • Black faceplate
  • Black/chrome faceplate
  • Red/chrome faceplate

The graphics on the faceplate are based on the Dick Tracy comic strip.

Specifications

  • Badging: Dick Tracy
  • Manufacturer: Seymour Products Co
  • Film: 127 roll film
  • Format: 3x4 cm
  • Lens: Fixed focus meniscus lens
  • Aperture: unknown
  • Shutter: mechanical leaf shutter
  • Shutter speed: unknown

Notes

  1. US design patent 114,324 from freepatentsonline.com.
  2. Hake's Americana & Collectibles, Auction #183 - Part II, Item 1858, "DICK TRACY CAMERA" BOXED, photo 1, 2.5x3x5-1/8" box w/illustrations Item number
  3. Photojournalist the hell out of things with this Dick Tracy camera »
  4. It Doesn`t Take A Supersleuth To See That Dick Tracy Items Are Hot


See The Chicago Cluster for more probably-related cameras and "companies"
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