Climaxing the mystery yarn of 50 years ago was the instant the intrepid spy or detective clicked his concealed camera, capturing the evidence. Cameras were bulkier then, byt designers disguised them ingeniously. These cameras are displayed at the George Eastman House in Rochester, N.Y. Opera glasses and pistols are sure-fire giveaways for spies, yet that didn’t deter the designers. Those in Photo 1 are cameras in disguise. That harmless-looking man surveying land near the Army base was really a spy and his thotolite, like te one in Photo 2, was a camera! The dapper detective was never without his cane because it had a camera in its handle, Photo 3. Back in 1890, the ascot tie, Photo 4, was the mark of a gentleman, but this one had a built-in camera, its lense forming the stickpin. Cruder but just as efficient is the circular camera that shoots through a buttonhole, Photo 5.

  1. Leroy Jenkins says: March 16, 20081:22 am

    I would be a gas at the next party waving a pistol in my friends faces, while unbeknownst to them, I’m photographing their silly faces. I don’t think anyone would notice. It’s only a pistol after all.

  2. ganmerlad says: March 21, 20098:49 am

    The pistol one is absurd. You would only have it a gun pointed at someone to shoot them, yet after standing there for a while clicking the trigger and nothing happening, you are dead. And as for taking a picture without anyone noticing, holding a gun is a sure fire way to have every eye ON you, especially when you keep pulling the trigger.

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