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Who invented the first photographic printer?

21 Jan 2019
Who invented the first photographic printer?

Who was George C Beidler

In 1906 the first photographic copying machine also known as the Photostat was introduced by George C Beidler who founded the Rectigraph Company. The Photostat was the first photographic copying machine. After 3 years George decided to move the Rectigraph business to Rochester, New York so it was closer to the Haloid Company who was his main source of photographic paper and chemicals.

George C Beidler


Background and history

The growth of business during the industrial revolution created the need for a more efficient way to print than hand copying. By the late 1840s copying presses were used, in the early 19th century Carbon Paper was first used. As the time went on various methods to make printing easier started, one of them being the ‘manifold writer’ this was used for copying book and other in depth paperwork. The blue process was used in the early 1870s; this was mainly to make blue prints for engineering drawings. Most of these involved messy fluids as they were manually done.

Photocopier evolution

Rectigraph machines

The Haloid Company purchased the rights to produce Chester Carlson’s Xerographic equipment and in 1961 this was renamed to Xerox Corporation. Rectigraph machines continued to sell from Haloid in the 1960s.

Xerox Photocopier and Printers

Photostat machines was later invented in 1907 in Kansas City, both Photostat and Rectigraph machines had the same purpose of photographic copying of documents. These machines consisted of a large camera that photographed paper of documents and applied an image directly onto the rolls of photographic paper that were approximately 350 feet long. The type of photographic prints produced by these types of machines are known as Photostats and people who operated these machines were known as Photostat operators.

Due to the expense and inconvenience of Photostats that drove Chester Carlson to study electrophotography however in the mid-1940s Carlson sold the rights to his invention which became known as Xerography.

Did you know Document XL have been supplying Xerox photocopiers and printers in Greater Manchester and Leeds since 2006? Contact us today on 03456448600 to get hold of the latest Xerox printer for your office. 


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