Gaumont

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In 1895 Léon Gaumont took over the "Comptoir général de photographie" in 57 rue Saint-Roch, Paris. In the same year he managed to market Georges Demenÿ's "appareils chronophotographiques" as well as to make Demenÿ's chronophotograph viewing machine Phonoscope (soon renamed to Bioscope). Demenÿ was a partner of the famous Étienne-Jules Marey, an inventor of chronophotography cameras. These cameras made it possible to study movements by shooting a whole series of sharp photos in a few seconds. In 1896 Gaumont introduced a good camera for perforated 58mm roll film in his first catalogue. Sales grew slowly and some cameras were dedicated to scientific photography. So the company was depending a little on helpful supporters, among them Gustave Eiffel. The company produced some Mutoscope motion picture presentation automats. In 1899 it was renamed to L. Gaumont & Cie. In 1900 it participated in the Expo Paris and won a "Grand Prix". It made precise stereo cameras as well as stereo image viewers, for example the reliable salon glassplate viewer Stéréodrome. In 1902 Gaumont presented an own sound film concept with synchronous playing of film and grammophone record (Chronophone, Chronomegaphone). The company kept making cameras on a high level, for example its Stéréospido Gaumont and similar stereo cameras, or its Spido press camera of 1925.

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