Francis B. CANNOCK

(Bristol, 1872-New York, 1919)

cannock francis portrait


Edwin Cannock (Bristol, [1843]-Bristol, 01/1931) épouse (Bristol, 14/03/1869) Rhoda Ann Giles (Wraxall, [1842]-Somerset, 03/1890). Descendance :

  • Francis "Frank" Bert Cannock (Bristol, 11/04/1872-New York, 19/01/1919) épouse (New York, 27/07/1901) Elizabeth May Matheson. Descendance:
    • Francis Cannock.
  • Florence Cannock (1874-)
  • Anna, Clara Cannock (Bristol, [1877]-)
  • Edwin Cannock (Bristol, 05/04/1878-New York, 25/03/1947) épouse Elizabeth M. Abbott (Bristol, 04/1878-New York, 11/1936). Descendance :
    • Florence Mary Cannock (1903-)
    • Nellie Cannock (1907-)
  • Lilian, Rhoda Cannock (Bristol, 1880-)


Né à Bristol, Francis B. Cannock quitte la Grande-Bretagne avec ses parents alors qu'il n'est âgé que de six ans (1878). La famille s'installe pendant plusieurs années à Elizabeth (New Jersey) avant de revenir en Angleterre où elle est recensée en 1891. Malgré son intérêt pour la mécanique automobile, il prend en charge le département de réparation des cinématographes de Blackton & Smith :

Almost immediately after his return from England, Cannock's love for mechanics led him to enter the automobile construction field, but soon thereafter the motion picture machine claimed his attention, and in 1897 he took charge of the motion picture machine repair department of Blackton & Smith, which company later, with the addition of William T. Rock, became the Vitagraph.

"Frank Cannock, metal wizard, dead", 1919: 601.

En 1899, il rejoint l'Eden Musee de Richard Hollaman où il va rester pendant neuf ans :

Here Cannock remained until 1899, in which year he took charge of the Eden Musee, remaining with that institution for nine years. During all that time Cannock was constantly experimenting with various ideas having to do with improvements in projection, or projection mechanism. The knowledge gained during this period of Cannock's life proved to be of great value to him later on.
During Mr. Cannock's time at the Eden Musee the screen results in that institution were considered as being the best in the entire world.

"Frank Cannock, metal wizard, dead", 1919: 601.

En effet, en 1903, Frank Cannock va déposer un brevet pour un "moving-picture mechanism", un appareil cinématographique qui a dû fonctionner à l'Eden Musee et qui est sans doute la première version de l'Edengraph dont le nom apparaît dans la presse à la fin de l'année 1907, époque à laquelle Frank Cannock s'associe à Richard Hollaman pour constituer la société Edengraph Manufacturing Company :

(Special to the Eagle.)
Richard W. Hallaman [sic] of Brooklyn is a director of the Edengraph Manufacturing Company of New York City, formed with the State Department, with a capital of $33,000.

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 13 novembre 1907, p. 3.

1907 cannock edengraph
"The Story of the Edengraph as Told by George Kleine"
The Film Index, vol. VI. nº 4, New York, 23 juillet 1910, p. 10

The Moving Picture World propose un article assez détaillé où il est question, en particulier des origines de l'edengraph :

This new projecting machine, which was referred to in our columns of February 22, will be offered to the trade early next month. Mr. Frank Cannock is the inventor, and, as the name implies, it is the machine that made moving pictures popular at the Eden Musee.
It is claimed by the Edengraph Manufacturing Company, who are makint these machines, that this is the most perfect projecting apparatus ever constructed. Built like a watch, parts interchangeable ana absolutely fireproof as well as foolproof. Compact in design, quick to thread, flicker reduced to a minumum, are some of the claims of the inventor.
This is note a tranformed machine, but an invention, the result ot twelve years experience in cinematograph apparatus, both in making machines and in projecting to the public. Mr Cannock has been chief operator as well as machinist at the Eden Musee for the past ten years, and the reputation ot moving pictures at this popular place of amusement is due to the perfectness of the projecting apparatus and improvements made from time to time by him.
The first Edengraph will be finished in about ten days, when it will be delivered at the office of the Department of Gas and Electricity for their approval. Due notice will be given by advertisement in the Moving Picture World when the machine is ready for the trade.
We are requested by Mr. Cannock to thank the writers of tne many letters sent him inquiring for machines since the article published in this paper February 22, and he desires us to say that in a short time all correspondence will be answered through the company’s office.

The Moving Picture World, vol. 2, nº 13, 28 mars 1908, p. 264.

cannock francis 1908 edengraph publicite
The Moving Picture World, vol. 2, nº 17, 25 avril 1908, p. 373.

En 1909, Francis B. Cannock entame une collaboration avec Edwin S. Porter et ensemble, ils fondent la Precision Machine Company qui élabore et distribue le projecteur Simplex. En 1910, il est recensé à New York. Plusieurs brevets sont déposés au nom des deux inventeurs : Lends-adjuster (US1041346. 04/03/1911), Kinetoscope (US1041345. 04/03/1911), Film Trap-door (US1059067. 04/03/1911).

Dans les années qui suivent, Francis Cannock continue ses activités d'inventeur toujours liées au cinématographe : Electric Arc Lamps (GB191222952. 08/10/1912), Kinetoscope-Projector (US1075692. 25/07/1912), Motion-Picture Camera (US1181432. 12/02/1914).

Frank Cannock décède en 1919.


"The Story of the Edengraph", The Nickelodeon, 1er août 1910, vol. IV, nº 3, p. 69-70.

"The Construction of the Edengraph", The Nickelodeon, vol. IV, nº 7, 1er octobre 1910, p. 188-190.

"Frank Cannock, metal wizard, dead", The Moving Picture World, 1er février 1919, p. 601.