Minagawa Shōten (皆川商店) was a Japanese distributor based in Tokyo. From 1929, it marketed the First plate folders, certainly produced by Kuribayashi. The "First" brand was certainly owned by Minagawa, and the company became the exclusive distributor of the Kuribayashi cameras until the early 1940s. These were advertised as "made by First Camera Works", but it seems that "First Camera Works" was nothing more than a name and logo forged by Minagawa for advertising purpose (see the discussion about the Camera Works endings).
After the war, Minagawa again used the "First" brand and "First Camera Works" logo for the Firstflex 6×6 TLR and First Six 6×6 folder, made by Tokiwa Seiki. The Minagawa company went bankrupt in 1955.
Distributed cameras Edit
Before 1945 Edit
- Mikuni (6.5×9cm plate folder)
- First (6.5×9cm plate folder)
- First Etui (6.5×9cm plate folder)
- First Roll (6×9cm folder)
- First Center (6×9cm folder)
- Semi First (4.5×6cm folder)
- First Six (6×6cm folder)
- Baby Semi First (4.5×6cm folder)
- Semi Rotte (4.5×6cm folder)
- Molby (3×4cm rangefinder)
After 1945 Edit
- ↑ Its address from 1934 to 1940 was Tōkyō Ueno Ekimae Okachimachi (東京上野駅前御徒町). Source: advertisements reproduced in Kokusan kamera no rekishi, pp.85–8. Its address from 1951 to 1955 was Tōkyō-to Taitō-ku Okachimachi 3-chōme 16 (東京都台東区御徒町3丁目16). It was probably the same as before, with the new address system used after the war. Source: advertisements reproduced in Kokusan kamera no rekishi, pp.169–70.
- ↑ Baird, p.15, suggests that First Camera Works was a manufacturing company jointly owned by Kuribayashi and Minagawa, but it seems that no actual company was called that way.
- ↑ Sugiyama, p.47.
- ↑ Baird, p.273.
- Asahi Camera (アサヒカメラ) editorial staff. Shōwa 10–40nen kōkoku ni miru kokusan kamera no rekishi (昭和10–40年広告にみる国産カメラの歴史, Japanese camera history as seen in advertisements, 1935–1965). Tokyo: Asahi Shinbunsha, 1994. ISBN 4-02-330312-7.
- Baird, John R. Collectors guide to Kuribayashi-Petri Cameras. Grantsburg, WI (USA): Centennial Photo Service, 1991. ISBN 0-931838-16-9.
- Lewis, Gordon, ed. The History of the Japanese Camera. Rochester, N.Y.: George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography & Film, 1991. ISBN 0-935398-17-1 (paper), ISBN 0-935398-16-3 (hard).
- Sugiyama, Kōichi (杉山浩一); Naoi, Hiroaki (直井浩明); Bullock, John R. The Collector's Guide to Japanese Cameras. 国産カメラ図鑑 (Kokusan kamera zukan). Tokyo: Asahi Sonorama, 1985. ISBN 4-257-03187-5.