So if Unitrons started in the early 50's there must have been other commercial scopes out there. To name a few lets start with Zeiss, Nippon, Busch, Clark, Tinsley, J.W. Fecker Inc., Brandon, were just a few that were selling scopes to amateurs long before the 50's. I am sure in a short while we can come up with lots more.
I think the operative words in the O.P.’s premise are “major scope sales.” Makers like Zeiss, Busch, Clark, Tinsley, J.W. Fecker Inc., B&L made and sold scopes to be sure, but they were really only affordable to the wealthy. Mogey made some less expensive scopes but still the 1930s were the years of the Great Depression which really didn’t end until we were in WWII and then there was rationing, scrap drives, metal shortages, and things were still pretty austere. This of course was the heyday of the Amateur Telescope Maker and those that could make do, did. I think things changed with the economic boom that took place following WWII which occurred at the same time that Japan and it’s industries were being rebuilt and affordable import optics hit US shores. And then, as Robert (Clamchip) acknowledged, the Space Race hit in 1957-58 and things really took off so to speak.
Edited by Terra Nova, 27 August 2020 - 07:33 AM.