Antique & Vintage Photographic Equipment

Twin Lens Carlton Hand Camera

London Stereoscopic Company

Name: The Twin Lens Carlton Hand Camera
Manufacturer: London Stereoscopic Company
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
Construction: Horizontal format rollfilm camera; teak bodied with brass binding and fittings.
Production Period: Unknown


Plate / Film Size: ¼ plate (magazine capacity of 12 plates)
Lens: Marked London Stereoscopic Co Black Band Reg No 88031, f6
Shutter: Simple T and I shutter, but speed adjustable
Movements: None
Dimensions (w x h x l):  
Date of this Example: c1897
Serial Number: Serial No 19156 on both lenses.
  • Common [ ]
  • Uncommon [ ]
  • Hard to Find [ ]
  • Scarce [x]
Inventory Number: 457

<Photographs to be added>


The Twin Lens Carlton Hand Camera is a leather covered twin lens reflex camera, which carries a London Stereoscopic Co badge on the inside of the lens cover, although the camera itself is unnamed. However it matches very closely to the advert for the Carlton in Photographic Advertisements from A-Z dated 1897 [8] and also a similar advert (same picture) that is shown in An Age of Cameras [7].

The lenses have matching serial numbers, but carry only a LSC marking on the barrel of the main lens.

This is an Improved version since it is focussing (refer to Channing & Dunn, [2], p78). It has 11 of the original 12 plate holders, although they are a little corroded. The leather covering is in good order. The shutter still fires and the plate changer mechanism, which can be operated from the front of the camera, still works but is stiff.

Very good condition with little sign of use / abuse. Stout leather handle still intact on end of camera. The rear door needs a key as it is shut with a lock.

Hide case, velvet lined. Badge inside lid for London Stereoscopic Company. However it is poor condition as the stitching has failed and it is falling apart!


Another plate magazine TLR sold on eBay in 2009 that looked very similar but was advertised as an Artist Reflex, c 1898. However Holmes [7] identifies the Artist as a later version that used single plates rather being a magazine camera.

Early versions of the camera were not true twin lens reflex cameras as the upper lens was simply for viewing and was not coupled to the focussing taking lens. However in this later version, both lens are mounted on a common lens board that moves when focussing.