The L.A.W. camera was manufactured by the Rochester Camera manufacturing Company sometime between 1892-1895, likely in 1894. The earlier c1892 Rochester models used a externally mounted rapid symmetrical lens, silent shutter for time or instantaneous exposures and were more recognizable due to the front standard having curved sides instead of a straight planel. The camera displayed is very similar to the c1894 Folding Rochester model and is a very rare and unusual camera that was either a prototype or made in small quantities. There is only one known example of this camera variation, as pictured below. It is labeled as the "The L.A.W - made expressly for the Kimball & Mathews Co. Columbus, Ohio ". The name implies that this camera was either made or targeted for the popular "League of American Wheelmen", aka the L.A.W.. This association was formed in 1880 and was focused on promoting bicycle racing and bicycle touring, in addition to improving roads across the country. They published a bulletin call the L.A.W and Good Roads in that time frame.
The Folding Rochester model of c1894 had a high grade symmetrical lens, rotating diaphragms and shutter built into the wooden lens board. It was available in both 4 x 5 and 5 x 7 inch size. Designed as a durable and compact camera, it was constructed of mahogany and covered in seal grain grain leather. The bellows were made from a high quality heavy leather colored red which extended manually. The viewfinder was mounted on the top. The 4 x 5 model measured 4 3/4 x 5 1/2 x 7 inches.
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