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  Balilla Box Camera

Photo Courtesy of Wish-4-Leica - © All Rights Reserved

The Bililla Box camera was manufactured by Zeiss Ikon in circa 1936. It was a repackaged Baldur Box camera designed for export to Italy. Like the Baldur it was a well made small box camera constructed with metal. The camera was fitted with a fixed focus Goerz Frontar Meniscus f11 lens.

The name selected was part of the marketing. Balilla was the nickname of Giovan Battista Perasso, a Genoese boy who started a revolt of 1746 when he stood up against some Austrian soldiers and set in motion movement to have the Austrian garrison evicted from the city for oppression on civilians. Perasso became a symbol of the struggle of the Italian people for independence and unification. Then in the 30's Italy's Fascist Government named the Opera Nazionale Balilla (ONB), a school-grade scouting-paramilitary youth organization, after him. Also several types of the Fiat 508 car, produced during the 1930s, used the popular name Balilla.

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