Skip to main content

Vest Pocket Kodak & The First World War

  • Pub date: May 2017
  • ISBN-13: 9781781452790
  • Author: Jon Cooksey, foreword by Richard van Emden
  • Price: £7.99
  • Binding: HB
  • No. of pages: 96
  • Photos: Includes 50 photographs
  • Dimensions: 178 x 110mm
  • Colour : B/w throughout

Vest Pocket Kodak & The First World War

The Vest Pocket Kodak & The First World War is the first in a proposed series of books documenting the relationship between conflicts and the iconic cameras that were used to record them. Launched in April 1912, the Vest Pocket Kodak was one of the world’s first compact cameras. About the size of an iPhone, it was small enough to fit in the pocket of a military waistcoat (the American ‘vest’). The VPK was advertised as the ‘Soldier’s Kodak’ and the pictures the troops took with the camera offer us a remarkably personal viewpoint on the First World War.

The first half of the book looks at how the Vest Pocket Kodak was developed and advertised, and tells the story of its significance in creating a unique account of the Great War. The second part presents a commemorative album of images taken with the camera: a remarkable record of a lost generation, and a tragic reflection of the manufacturer’s advertising by-line: ‘Kodak pictures never let you forget.’

Jon Cooksey is a leading military historian, editor of Stand To! magazine and author of over 20 titles. His work has appeared in military magazines and national newspapers, and on television and radio.

Inside pages - click to enlarge