Despite the fact that August Herzog's creativeness was an effort to pave a new
path for uncomplicated toy and learning cameras, their rarity and apparent lack
of advertising indicates he was, more than likely, unsuccessful. In addition to a
somewhat high price, the problem might also be attributed to a rapidly maturing industry
further separating his camera designs from established body patterns already accepted
by the public. Or, was the late 1870s and early 1880s toy camera concept simply too
soon for consumers who were comfortable with the simpler pleasures of building blocks,
dolls, and kites?
In summary, August Herzog's attempt to offer cameras to teach photography as a
family activity is an interesting footnote in the history and evolution of photographic
apparatus. His innovative thinking opened the door for others to follow; such as Franklin
Putnam's traditionally styled 1880s Marvel tailboard field view camera that was
advertised as an outfit to make money - but that's another story.
American Gem No.2, 1881 August Herzog's Toy Cameras - page 5
Listing of August Herzog's Patents by Date of Issue: • March 9, 1869 - No. 87,672: Material For The Manufacture Of Cabinet And Other Work ...In Wood • April 19, 1870 - No. 102,123: Improved Cover for Tables, Floors, &c.
• February 25, 1873 - No. 136,243: Improvement in Extension Tables • August 17, 1875 - No. 166,776: Improvement in Game-Boards • September 12, 1876 - No. 182,117: Improvement in Toy Cameras • October 26, 1880 - No. 233,618: Draftman's Triangle • September 20, 1881 - Reissue No. 9,878: Toy Camera • October 11, 1881 - No. 248,175: Plate-holder For Cameras • December 27, 1881 - No. 251,438: Telescoping Easel • March 25, 1884 - No. 295,638: Photographic Camera