Camera shy | Bleader

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Kansas City Star, December 5, 1905. "Flashlight camera" was the original term for a camera equipped with a flash. The light was generated by the explosion of an exposed quantity of magnesium powder. It was a loud, smoky and dangerous technology. Photographers were known to set themselves on fire, or start fires when shooting indoors. But flash photography itself was widely seen as an intolerable invasion of privacy.

Details in the above item are scant, but I assume the camera fiend in question was a pioneering papparazzo and that his illicitly-obtained picture of Marshall Field was intended for publication.

But the privacy-shattering powers of the flash could be used for good as well as evil, as the following item (Fort Worth Telegram, October 30, 1909) demonstrates.

I assume that the "conditions" targeted by our camera-toting, home-invading uplifters here had something to do with race-mixing and sex.