Not like this:
But like this:
1850 portrait of a mulatto woman
J.P. Ball quarter plate daguerreotype of mulattoes
A fine daguerreotype portrait of a young, well-dressed mulatto woman, with the letters W and MB etched on plate’s verse
*Quarter Plate Daguerreotype of Two White Children & Their Mulatto Servants*
Cased Ninth Plate Daguerreotype of a Mulatto, fine half-length portrait of a 20-something young, mixed race gentleman, Negroid and Caucasian, in typical merchant sailors outfit of the period.
The Daguerreotype was the first successful photographic process, the discovery being announced on 7 January 1839. The process consisted of
- exposing copper plates to iodine, the fumes forming light-sensitive silver iodide. The plate would have to be used within an hour.
- exposing to light – between 10 and 20 minutes, depending upon the light available.
- developing the plate over mercury heated to 75 degrees Centigrade. This caused the mercury to amalgamate with the silver.
- fixing the image in a warm solution of common salt (later sodium sulphite was used.)
- rinsing the plate in hot distilled water.
I absolutely love these! I fully intend to collect them one day when I can afford it. There seems to me to be so much more to a daguerreotype than a photograph. They seem haunted to me. Like the image and the moment was so thoroughly captured that I’m really looking at something/someone frozen in time. Haunted.
On another note, I get some sort of satisfaction from looking at these and reading the descriptions. Proof that “we” exist and were once recognized.
*or brothers….(re: white children & their mulatto servants above)*