Ansco

Ansco

Ansco was the name of a photographic company based in Binghamton, New York, which produced inexpensive cameras for most of the 20th century. It also sold rebadged versions of cameras made by other manufacturers, including Agfa, Chinon, and a Minolta-built model was the first 35 mm camera in space.

History

The company was founded in 1842 (pre-dating Kodak in the photography business)as the E. and H.T. Anthony & Co. and became the Anthony & Scoville Co. in 1901. In 1928 Ansco merged with the German photo company Agfa into a corporation named Agfa-Ansco. Later that year that firm and other German owned chemical firms were merged into a German controlled (by IG Farben) Swiss based corporation named Inter-nationale Gesellschaft fur Chemische Unternehmungen AG or IG Chemie, in short. In 1929 the name was changed to American IG Chemical Corporation or American IG, later renamed General Aniline & Film and continued to produce cameras under the Agfa-Ansco name. The Agfa-Ansco interests in the U.S. and Binghamton factory was taken over by the US government in 1941 due to its ties with Germany. The company was sold as enemy assets to American interests. It continued to do business after World War II as Ansco. In 1967 the company was renamed General Aniline & Film (GAF), and a variety of cameras as well as films were sold under this name. The last Ansco cameras were produced in the early 1990s.

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