The Daguerreian Society


On this day (May 6) in the year 1840, the following item appeared in 
"Alexander's Weekly Messenger."  The author of the item?  Edgar Allan 
Poe.
- - - - - - - - - - - -

       The Daguerreotype.

  The New York Sunday Mercury, one of the very best papers we receive in 
every respect, has a good article on the Fifteenth annual Exhibition of 
the National Academy of Design.  Its observations on the Daguerreotype 
are especially excellent.  It observes, however, that, until the 
transcript can be produced on paper, its use can never prove detrimental 
to the interest of the engraver.  This is true in part, but then the 
production of the Daguerreotype effects on paper is likely to be soon 
accomplished.  In France some very successful attempts have been made in 
this way.  We agree fully, nevertheless, with the Mercury, that the 
invention will prove, upon the whole, highly beneficial to the interests 
of the fine arts.  By the way, why is it that Americans persist in 
mispelling the word Daguerreotype.  The accent should be placed upon the 
second e as we give it, and the word thus becomes one of five instead of 
four syllables.
* * * * *

(The article that Poe references appeared in the May 3, 1840 issue of 
the (New York) "Sunday Mercury."  Today's post is cited from "Edgar 
Allan Poe's Contributions to Alexander's Weekly Messenger" [Worcester, 
The American Antiquarian Society, 1943] pg. 82)

A note from Gary:  I have not been successful in obtaining a (photo)copy 
of the article in the May 3, 1840 (N.Y.) "Sunday Mercury" that Poe 
mentions.  Might one of my readers have access to the periodical and be 
able to provide a copy?
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Posted for your enjoyment.      Gary W. Ewer       
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05-06-96


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