A Photographic Blast from the Past
The daguerreotype represented a short, but sweet chapter in the early stages of photography. Invented by Louis Daguerre in the 1830s, the daguerreotype was an image created on a polished silver-plated copper sheet that had undergone various chemical treatments. It became wildly popular when it came out, but the process was also expensive so, in just a few decades, the daguerreotype had been almost completely replaced with cheaper, newer alternatives. The good news is that, stored in proper conditions, daguerreotypes are pretty durable which means that we can still use them to catch a glimpse of a world gone by.
Daguerreotype of its inventor, Louis Daguerre
Earliest dated daguerreotype – 1837
Daguerreotype of Lincoln when he was an Illinois Congressman.
1838 daguerreotype of Paris which allegedly is the first photograph of humans.
Oldest surviving Japanese photograph – 1857 daguerreotype of Japanese lord Shimazu Nariakira.
McKay’s Shipyard in Boston – 1855
Retouched 1850s daguerreotype of a woman misidentified as Susan B. Anthony.
1850 daguerreotype of opera singer Jenny Lind, the “Swedish Nightingale”.
1847 daguerreotype of renowned abolitionist John Brown.
Capitol Building in 1851
General store in Nevada City, California
1850s daguerreotype of a class of children with their teacher.
Poet Henry Longfellow and his family at the Niagara Falls.
1844 daguerreotype of Arthur Wellesley – the only known photograph of the Duke of Wellington.
San Francisco’s Portsmouth Square in 1851.