A rare watch made to hide a spy camera was sold at auction for £21,600 yesterday.
The watch, made by Lancaster & Co in Birmingham in the 1880s, was one of only four known to exist and sold to an anonymous bidder at Bonhams in Knowle, West Midlands. The nickel-plated pocket watch, was brought to the auctioneers by the grandson of the original owner.
Lionel Hughes, Bonhams' camera specialist, said: "Such tiny cameras were the forerunners for the spy camera.
"However, it would have been very inconvenient to use as four very small catches had to be released in order to remove the glass screen and to fit a holder for each exposure."
He said as a result, the model, which was made in Birmingham, sadly sold badly and is much rarer than an later improved version. This specimen is particularly rare because it has a ladies' pattern.
Thursday, May 10, 2007
19th Century Spy Camera
From the Telegraph: