The 
Daguerreian Society


Although this article doesn't specifically identify the "picture" as a 
daguerreotype, I thought it still worthy of a "DagNews" post.

On this day (May 20) in the year 1847 the following article appeared 
in the "Daily Republican" (Springfield, Massachusetts) Vol. 4, No. 119, 
(20 May 1847):
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

   THE EFFECT OF LOOKING AT A PICTURE OF A DECEASED FRIEND.--A singular 
and most affecting case of almost instantaneous death in one of our 
late foreign papers as having occurred under the most remarkable 
circumstances, the deceased being Charles T. Cunningham Esq, Lieutenant 
Governor of St. Christopher's and the Leeward Isles.  The record is 
given as follows:--

   It appears that this gentleman had just driven in from the country 
to the seat of government, in apparently vigorous health and cheerful 
spirits, to open the houses of legislature.  After transacting some 
business with his private secretary, and despatching a note to invite 
some officers of a French ship-of-war, just come into port, to luncheon 
at government house, he rode down to the mail office to meet his 
letters, and a box containing a picture of a much beloved sister 
recently deceased in England.  He had stated to more than one person 
that his earnest desire to possess the picture was not unmixed with 
fear as to the effect the sight of it might produce upon him.
   So strongly had this apprehension fastened itself upon his mind, 
that on the arrival of the box at government house he sent a servant in 
quest of a friend who might be with him when the box was opened.  
Having failed in finding him, he proceeded to open the box.  His 
butler, who was present, reports that he looked at the countenance 
earnestly, turned pale, whispered a few words to himself, walked 
hastily up to his own room, was heard almost instantly to fall as he 
entered it, and his servants, following up stairs, found him stretched 
on the floor a corpse.  He fell a victim, partly "to the exhausting 
influence of tropical climates on the nervous powers," and partly to 
the intensity of brotherly affection, in the 36th year of his age.


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Posted for your enjoyment.     Gary W. Ewer     
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05-20-98


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