R.D. Gray, New York               Early 1890's




No. 6 Landscape Lens by R. D. Gray, New York.  Measuring 3" high with a barrel diameter of 1-7/8", the lens is configured for Waterhouse stops.


Robert D. Gray founded his firm in 1887 in New Jersey, and began experimenting with anastigmatic lens designs.  He would establish operations in New York by 1889. By 1901, he was operating as the Gray-Lloyd Manufacturing Company in Ridgewood, New Jersey, introducing his new Gray's Double Stigmat that year.  By 1911, the business was named R.D. Gray again, marketing a line of Parallax studio lamps.  Based upon ads found, he remained in business through at least 1916. 

Most of Gray's lenses seen today bear his New York address.  Gray is best known for his vest camera, designed to be concealed beneath a topcoat, and his line of wide-angle and rapid symmetrical Periscope lenses.

Lenses by R. D. Gray are scarce in general, with his Piston Shutter and some styles of his lenses not seen very often. Gray's Wide-Angle lenses are more prevalent, but his landscape lenses are almost never seen.  Although R. D. Gray reportedly had over thirty years of lens-making experience, there has been speculation that some of his lenses were manufactured by someone else.


Other than a few references found in photographic journals, I have yet to locate any advertisements for his landscape lenses. This is the only example of an R.D. Gray Landscape Lens that I have ever come across.