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Julius Neubronner’s Pigeon Cameras

Julius Neubronner was a German inventor who also had a big part in aerial photography. He used pigeons in order to take aerial shots. Let’s learn more about this genius after the break.

photo via Retronaut

Julius Neubronner belonged to a family of apothecaries. Ever since he was a child, Julius was already interested in photography even buying his own camera shortly after its invention. He finished his studies and became an assistant for an apothecary for apprenticeship. From then on, he continued to study and took up pharmacology and chemistry, thereafter receiving his doctorate.

A few years after getting his doctorate, Julius Neubronner took over the family pharmacy. While working there, they used pigeons as a means of transporting prescriptions to different villages. In 1908, he developed and patented a system wherein he could take aerial shots using pigeons. This idea probably came to him when he used the pigeons to transport prescriptions and medication. He became famous for his idea when he presented it to international exhibitions in both Paris and Frankfurt. During the exhibition, the people watched as the pigeons arrived with the cameras. The photos were developed then and there and were made into postcards that the audience could purchase. He was successful with his idea and he was rewarded with gold medals for the photos and for the idea.

Here are some of the photos of the pigeons and the aerial shots:

Information for this article was taken from Wikipedia – Julius Neubronner and The Public Domain Review

written by jeanmendoza


  1. blinghaha


    Really interesting thanks! Found this, all I'm French and mine isn't good enough to read well but there is some more photos http://www.cameramus(…)talogue.pdf

    about 3 years ago · report as spam
  2. 110isnotdead


    I am so temped to catch a pigeon and try this out. lol

    over 2 years ago · report as spam