Montgomery Wards & Co., Chicago, IL

The Chicago View, Variation 1

Date Introduced: – ; Years Manufactured: c. 1897
Construction: front focus via rack and pinion (two gear tracks on top of base rails); double swing; reversing by removable back; three-piece lensboard
Materials:  mahogany body, cherry base, brass hardware, black fabric and rubber bellows
Sizes Offered: 5×7; 6.5×8.5, 8×10, 11×14
Notes: parts are very similar to the Rochester Optical Empire State Improved, except for the focus being front only.  Note the “upside down” arrangement of the lensboard, which is almost guaranteed to have an unsightly gap at the top.
Catalogue “G” 1897 Photographic Apparatus and Materials, Montgomery Ward & Co., 1897, p. 21