THE CHASE MAGAZINE CAMERA
The Chase Magazine Camera Company, Newburyport, Massachusetts 1898-1899?
Pending better information, I'm referring to this 3-1/4 x 4-1/4 camera as the Chase Magazine Camera, to distinguish it from the Chase Box Magazine Camera and the Chase Folding Magazine Camera, both marketed by the Kozy Camera Company of Boston, Massachusetts in 1900 and 1901, at least. Ads for both the Chase Folding Magazine Camera and the Chase Box Magazine Camera having the drop magazines, can be found in The Professional and Amateur Photographer for January, 1900.
Believed introduced in 1898, the Chase Magazine Camera is outwardly similar to the Kozy Company's Chase Box Magazine Camera which appeared a few years later. Both were capable of holding twelve 3-1/4 x 4-1/4 plates and the Chase Box Magazine also came in a 4x5 version. The Chase Magazine Camera's falling plate system differs from the drop magazines found on the Chase Box Magazine Camera and the Chase Folding Magazine Camera.
The camera's rear door contains the patent date May 17, 1898, referring to Patent No. 604,204 granted to Jacob J. Chase of Newburyport, Massachusetts for this falling plate design. The falling plate concept was found on other cameras of the late 1890's such as the Magazine Cyclone series. Jacob J. Chase was later granted Patent No. 641,268 on January 16, 1900 for the drop magazine design found on the Chase Box Magazine Camera and the Chase Folding Magazine Camera.
Neither of Jacob Chase's patents were assigned and I haven't determined the extent of his connection to the Kozy Camera Company. Newburyport, Massachusetts is about 35 miles northeast of Boston where the Kozy Camera Company was located. Along with the other models Kozy offered, the Chase Box Magazine Camera and Chase Folding Magazine Camera were the only two being sold under the Chase name in Kozy's 1900 catalogue.
The Chase Magazine Camera featured here is stamped "The Chase Magazine Camera Co., Newburyport, Mass." on the lower front panel. Maybe the Chase Magazine Camera, and possibly other models, were being made by Chase and sold through the Kozy Camera Company which also existed in 1898.
Per the Public Documents of Massachusetts: Being the Annual Reports of Various Public Officers and Institutions for the Year 1898, in February, Jacob J. Chase & Son began manufacture of cameras.
The Kozy Camera Company was only in business for about six years, and their entire line of cameras and catalogs are either rare or extremely scarce.
Research has yet to reveal much more about Jacob J. Chase & Son or the Chase Magazine Camera Company, as no ads, catalogues or other references have been found. With this being is the only camera I have ever seen with the Chase company name, the camera can easily be considered extremely scarce or rare.
The 1870 Census shows Jacob J. Chase as a clerk in a store, and by the 1910 Census he is shown as a machinist with his own shop. At the time of his death in 1919, he was listed as a bicycle dealer.
Jacob James Chase (1850-1919) is buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Newburyport, Massachusetts. The cemetery record shows a birth date of July 3, 1850 in Newburyport, Massachusetts and a date of death as December 8, 1919 in Newburyport, Massachusetts. His wife, Elmira Elizabeth Southwick Chase, born January 13, 1846 in Stoneham, Massachusetts, died December 4, 1920 in Newburyport, Massachusetts.
Patent for the Chase Magazine Camera Source: Google Patents
Later patents for the Chase Box Magazine Camera and the Chase Folding Magazine Camera Source: Google Patents
Kozy Camera Company 1900 catalogue cover