photography related industry in Rochester (New York)
American Camera | Bausch & Lomb | Blair | Century | Crown Optical Co. | Elgeet | Folmer & Schwing | Gassner and Marx | Graflex | Gundlach | Ilex | JML | Kodak | Milburn | Monroe | PMC | Ray | Reichenbach, Morey and Will | Rochester Camera and Supply Co. | Rochester Optical Co. | Seneca | Sunart | Walker | Wollensak
and in Rochester (Minnesota)
external links - Rudolf Kingslake's
"Optical industry in Rochester (N.Y.)"

The Eastman Company[]

Henry H. Reichenbach was the inventor of the modern transparent rollfilm. He was a chemist, working as undergraduate assistant at the University of Rochester. In 1886 his chief recommended him to George Eastman who needed scientific help for the development of a new transparent rollfilm. After two years of work at Eastman Co. Reichenbach could present the result of his research, a material based on nitrocellulose solution and wood alcohol. The liquid celluloid was spread onto glass tables with a length of 16 metres. Thus some liquid components evaporated and the flexible celluloid foil was ready. He received a patent on it in 1889 while Eastman withdrew its own patent. Thus Reichenbach took the first chance to leave Eastman to found a new company.


PMC or P.M.C. was the abbreviation for "Photo Materials Company". It was formed by former Eastman employees in 1891, by Reichenbach and another chemist, S. Carl Passavant, together with the a camera constructor Gustave D. Milburn. It made photo paper and cameras. It worked closely together with the Celluloid Company of Newark, New Jersey, managing that Eastman got worse celluloid than PMC. In 1894 Milburn left PMC to found Milburn. In 1896 Reichenbach left PMC to found a camera company. PMC went out of business so that Eastman could buy its assets.

  • PMC cameras
    • Trokon
    • Trokonet

Reichenbach, Morey and Will[]

Together with John E. Morey and Albert Will Reichenbach founded another company which made the Alta cameras. The remarkable Alta Automatic of 1898 was one of the earliest self-erecting folding cameras.

  • Cameras
    • Alta
    • Alta Automatic