Mitchell Camera Company, 6025 Santa Monica Boulevard, Los Angeles, California        1921- 1924


Early Six-Hole Pulley 400' Film Magazine for the Mitchell Standard 35mm motion picture camera.  The magazine was designed by John E. Leonard of Los Angeles, California, who also designed the Mitchell Standard.  Leonard, who held over a dozen patents related to the Mitchell Camera, was granted Patent No. 1,336,640 on April 13, 1920, having applied it on May 19, 1919:



                                          Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office


This magazine is equipped with 6-hole pulleys and raised casing rims, seen on the very first Mitchell Standards introduced in 1920/1921. These earliest magazines are three-piece units, having the two circular film chambers attached to the base. They were constructed in this manner until Mitchell was able to produce a single casting.

The chambers and doors are ribbed (called "rods" in the patent wording) to hold the film in line upon the spool. These first magazines had smooth or lightly textured finishes, versus the later and more accentuated black wrinkle finishes.  The raised rims on the lids had finely serrated edges to facilitate opening and closing.  Later in production, wide serrated bands along with four raised bars were cast into the lids to improve grip. Based on the few examples I've seen, these early magazines do not have Mitchell's familiar "acorn" style maker's tag, nor do they bear any visible serial numbers.

These first magazines have been seen with both 6-hole and 8-hole pulleys.  The 6-hole design has the pulley either pressed on to the spindle shaft, or held by a single set screw as seen on the Mitchell Bi-Pack featured elsewhere on this website.  With the 8-hole design, the pulley is held on the spindle shaft by a cap screw, the cap screw being retained by two smaller screws.  The 8-hole pulley succeeded the 6-hole, as the 8-hole pulley's screw attachment design was carried forward until Mitchell closed its doors in the late 1970's.


Mitchell's earliest magazines are honestly very rare, and it's anybody's guess as to how many survive.  A few have been seen in recent years, a limited number exist in museums and private collections, and no doubt there are some still waiting to be discovered. 


The 6-hole pulley design can be seen in an ad for the Mitchell Standard in The American Cinematographer, January 1,1922:


             From The American Cinematographer, January 1, 1922



The rimmed magazine style is depicted on this cover from The American Cinematographer for June 1, 1922.  This illustration of the Mitchell Standard appeared on their cover for all of 1922, and through August of 1923




            From The American Cinematographer, April, 1923



           The rimmed casing style is reflected in this ad from The American Cinematographer, July, 1923



           From The American Cinematographer, July, 1924



           Close-up of the 6-hole pulleys from the above ad