On this day, July 12 in the year 1854, the man who invented the Kodak camera was born in New York, USA. His name was George Eastman, the founder of the Eastman Kodak Company.
George was born to a middle class family. His father was the owner of a small college. However, he was only 8 years old when his father passed away and his family’s fortune declined drastically. He had two elder sisters. One of them was sick of polio and died when he was 16.
George had little formal education because he wanted to work to help in the family budget. He got a job in an insurance company and later in a local bank. In 1880, he resigned from the bank to launch his photography business. 5 years later, he headed to the patent office for his first film in roll form. In 1888, he patented his Kodak camera, a handheld box camera containing a 100-exposure roll of film that used paper negatives. Later, he established the Eastman Kodak Company to manufacture standardized photography equipment and flexible transparent films. In 1990, the company produced and sold the first Brownie camera for $1 each.
George dislike unions but he cared for his employees so much that he gave them outright cash gift. He was also among the first industrialists to implement profit sharing scheme. He donated money for the establishment of the Eastman School of Music and also the medical and dentistry faculties at the University of Rochester. He also gave money in support of Black colleges.
In 1932, George committed suicide by shooting himself through the heart. Prior to his death, he has been suffering from intense pain due to spinal disorder. He never married.