Catalogue Number: 2865
Martin Wells men's spectacle frame glazed with PhotoSun lenses with slip-in case
Category: Spectacles and lenses
Sub-Category: Spectacles with case
Corporation: MARTIN WELLS PTY LTD
Year Of Publication/Manufacture: 1978
Time Period: 1940 to 1999
Place Of Publication/Manufacture: Australia
Publisher/Manufacturer: Martin Wells Pty Ltd
Description Of Item: Men's shell spectacle frame, 130 x 45 mm, made in Australia by Martin Wells Pty Ltd , mottled brown colour with saddle bridge and metal hockey sides tipped with black plastic. It is glazed with glass PhotoSun lenses R -3.50/-0.25 x 165 L -3.25 D Sph. The right side is engraved ' 135 (side length) MARTIN WELLS '; the left side is engraved ' 135 (side length) FRAME AUSTRALIA The back of the frame front is stamped 50/18 (frame size). The spectacles are contained in a dark brown leather slip-in spectacle case, 150 x 65 mm, with pocket clip and is gold stamped on the front ' HENRY B HORSFALL LOSc / OPTOMETRIST /ECHUCA '
Historical Significance: Martin Wells was an Australian spectacle frame manufacturer founded by business man Sidney Sinclair OBE AM (1915-1999), optometrist Eric Hurst and Dino Zigarelli, a spectacle frame expert. Martin Wells produced a range of spectacle frames in the 1950s that were highly popular in Australia and ushered in a new era of fashion into spectacles in Australia. In the early 1950s the most common styles were flesh and demi-amber plastic frames with full-vue lens shape and plastic hockey sides; steel frames covered with imitation tortoise shell and curl sides, and rimless glasses. They were not fashion items. Martin Wells was the first Australian frame manufacturer to produce fashion frames. Henry (Hank) Horsfall was one of the first optometrists to complete the then relatively new four-year optometry course offered by the Australian College of Optometry from 1940 for the diploma of Licentiate of Optometric Science (LOSc). The diploma was first awarded in 1944. Horsfall graduated in 1953 with certificate No. 42. He practised in Eucha, Victoria.
How Acquired: Donated by Colin Bates, honorary archivist
Date Acquired: May 2016
Condition: Very good
Location: Archive Office. Spectacles cabinet Drawer 17