British Correspondent’s Bag and Photojournalist’s Bag

British Correspondent’s Bag and Photojournalist’s Bag

I recently set out to understand the differences among popular leather and linen English bags Banana Republic produced: The Low Profile Bag, The Correspondent’s Bag, Photojournalist Bag and Mr. Brady’s Traveler’s Bag. As is described in the Fall 1984 “Outfitters Who Outlasted the Empire” catalog the Zieglers contracted with many old English factories to produce their goods for BR. With some help from folks at the Abandoned Republic Facebook Page and a little internet searching I learned that the bags were made by two different traditional British bag makers, Brady and Billingham. Mr. Billingham founded his company in 1973, having been trained as a bag maker by Brady, which is a family owned bag company dating back to 1887. The two camera bags were made by Billingham and is still doing great business today selling similar bags as they made for BR called the Hadley.

The British Correspondent’s Bag had room for four camera lenses and three camera bodies. This bag and the Photojournalist’s vest were popular with working photographers and correspondents as well as savvy travelers.
The Correspondent’s Bag shown here with a Photojournalist’s Vest.
Removable padded panels hold expensive camera equipment securely in place.
Wonderful logo embossing was shown on only one of the two straps.
These bags were very likely made in England by the Billingham factory, a bag maker that is still producing bags of this type to this day.
A similar bag, more square in its profile was sold in Fall 1984-Summer 1985 as The Photojournalist’s Bag.
The Photojournalist Bag was even sold on the same page as the Correspondent’s bag in its last appearance in the Summer 1985 catalogue. .

About The Author

Robyn Adams
Robyn's fascination with Banana Republic began in 1984 when her Alaskan adventurer father began buying the clothing and giving her the catalogs. She loved the clothes and as an artist she was drawn to the illustrations. She went on to study illustration at art college in BR's hometown of San Francisco and worked for years as a background artist for animation. She is now based in Oakland, CA as a graphic designer and illustrator with Secret Fan Base . She's been collecting and archiving at Abandoned Republic since 2011.

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