Chunk of La Daguerreotypomanie

The Nineteenth Century Daguerreotypes in the Collection Index Page

The trio of unassuming daguerreotypes were acquired at a photography collectors' swap meet. I came across the table of a couple who had been selling daguerreotypes and were packing up, and I asked what could $35 get me? And now you know.

19th century dandy

The fellow with the "Flock of Seagulls" hairdo is a gold-toned sixth plate, possibly from the halcyon years of the 1840's. It has its cover, but the tape hinge is long gone.

Low budget daguerreotype

The young lady is a more recent ninth-plate image, as the photographer's business card mentions Ambrotypes, which did not make the scene until 1854. A bargain for a quarter! It did not have a cover for its case, but the back of the remaining piece is shown.

Blank plate, waiting to be used!

The plate without an image was acquired from Gallery EGG, or Earth Goddess Gallery. A colleague of mine from the School of the Art Institute, Ken Rinaldo, had an opening there, and we were hanging out in the gallery owner's office. "It's so sad what happened to your daguerreotype," pointing at the silver-plated copper sheet pinned up on her corkboard. "It never was one, it's a blank plate," and she showed me a wooden box with for or five more in it! It also had a label pasted on one edge! Who knows where that treasure trove is now!

One of the corners of this plate had been turned over with pliers, so it may have seen the light of an exposure, but was unsuccessful for one reason or another, and buffed back for re-use. I could do something with it, but I like looking at its excellent oxidizing decay.

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