Recently while searching through an antique shop, I bought a vintage camera, an Argus Argoflex E to be exact. It’s an old twin-reflex camera, made sometime between 1946 to 1948. But that’s not the cool part. Inside this camera was a little gem. Or at least the possibility of being a gem. Because inside this 70 year old camera sat an undeveloped roll on 620 film. The only thing was, no one knew what was on it, if anything. For all I knew, it could have been damaged beyond recognition after years of rotting in some musty basement and from the outside you couldn’t even tell if it was black & white, color or slide film.
But all that doesn’t matter because it was far too interesting to remain sitting in the back of this camera any longer. So Ibrought it down to the Panda Lab and got it developed. And to my surprise, it had ten beautiful images waiting to blow the minds of all who gaze upon them.
The thing is, only more questions arise now that it’s developed. Things like, “who is this family?”, “What happened to this camera to why it lay forgotten for what appears to be 45 years?” and “where are these people now?” It’s mind boggling and frustrating to think these questions will most likely never be answered. How could you take photos of your young family playing in the yard, only to then leave the camera and the film sit untouched for decades and decades? It’s even confusing to think about how the camera ended up on the shelves of an antique shop.
But as for now in the year 2010, after all the things that must have fallen into place for these images to cross my path, I feel mighty lucky.
NOTE: Thanks to the detective help of Andrea Nelson and her automotive scholar dad, they were able to decipher the white car in the photos to be a ’66 Ford Thunderbird and the others are early 60’s Dodges. So perhaps if the Thunderbird is a few years old, it could mean the film was taken sometime around 1968.