History & Project Status

As far as anyone knows, Sawyer's and the subsequent owners of View-Master did not keep a master list of all the titles that were released over the years, so the task of compiling comprehensive lists has been left to collectors. Over the years many have been published in different formats. For books, the most well known are "Collectible View-Master" by Brad & Julie Welsch, and the four volume "View-Master Reels & Packets - A Collector's Guide" by Harry zur Kleinsmiede.

Since the Internet became more accessible and widely used in the 1990's, a number of websites have been made featuring View-Master lists. One of the most popular and extensive was called "The Ultimate Reel List". It displayed information in a table format sorted by the catalog number used by View-Master and was compiled by Keith Baird. When he no longer had time to maintain the site, he let it expire when the hosting service was phased out. Thanks to the Internet Archive, the original site can be viewed here.

Work on the View-Master Database was started in 2012 by Ryan Dumont, a collector and web developer. He designed a relational database to organize information about View-Master products and wrote scripts to populate it, using the Ultimate Reel List as a starting point. He also prepared a front-end that allows users to search and browse the database in different ways. In 2015, Ryan began working with Dalia Miller, owner of the online shop 3DStereo.com, to expand the concept and make the VMDB a more complete collector's resource. They worked with several collectors and dealers to add thousands of scanned images which help illustrate the site. They also included some articles that may be of interest. The site was launched in 2017.

Initial Version
(April 2017)

The version at launch time features most of the old Ultimate Reel List in a database format with a focus on images and articles about View-Master's three reel packet releases. Here's a summary of what's available now:

  • Search functionality with results as you type
  • Browsing using a tree-like hierarchical structure based on geography, subject and catalog number
  • Articles by John Clement about members of the production team, including restored parallel-view images
  • Over 2,800 packet scans

Future Items
  • Upload remaining three-reel packet scans
  • Advanced search options
  • Large format "BG6" Belgian made titles
  • Talking View-Master titles
  • SP and other letter-prefix single reel titles
  • Scans for single reels
  • Scans for blisterpacks