Dr Julius Neubronner’s Miniature Pigeon Camera


In 1902, German apothecary and inventor Dr. Julius Neubronner read a news report about pigeons and got angry. The news came out of Boston, where an American pharmacist was using carrier pigeons to deliver prescriptions. What so upset Dr. Neubronner was how the report entirely omitted the true pioneer behind the practice: his father, Dr. Wilhelm Neubronner.

Using a miniature, time-released camera and an aluminum breast harness, in 1907 Dr. Neubronner began experimenting with a novel way to capture aerial photographs: deploying a squad of pigeon photographers.

So Dr. Julius Neubronner, inspired by the slight, purchased some pigeons and began training them to deliver vials of medicine to a nearby sanatorium. He took a liking to the birds, evidently, because he soon integrated them not only into his family business, but into his personal passion: photography.

Neubronner sought a patent for his pigeon camera, and the German patent office initially rejected his application. Things changed when patent office officials saw the pictures themselves. Sure, they could have been taken by a hot-air balloonist, but the wings, visible on the periphery of the snapshot, gave up the true identity of the photographers.

Via https://allthatsinteresting.com/dr-neubronners-pigeon-photographers