Daguerreian Society

On this day Edward Everett Hale took pen in hand and composed this letter to his 
brother, Nathan.  Cited from Edward E. Hale, Jr., "The Life and Letters of 
Edward Everett Hale" (Boston: Little, Brown, and Company, 1917) pp. 72-73:
- - - - - - - - - - -


   April 15, 1840.  I have taken my first Daguerreotype, with almost perfect 
success.  It is of the church at the South End nearly opposite the head of 
Orange St., [Mr. Mott's] and is quite equal to some of the worst of Mr. 
Gourand's, which I think quite encouraging for the first.  It is very much like 
one he had of Quincy market which I don't think you have seen.  It is perfectly 
distinct, and the faults are such as are easily explained and remedied.  I stood 
to be taken in it, Francis opening and shutting the camera, but unfortunately I 
stood against a dark background so that nothing but my legs which come against 
the white stone of the steps, and my face and shirt bosom are visible.  It was 
in the camera twelve minutes apparently just the right time for the light.
   The scheme for the family Daguerreotype class is pretty much given up.  I 
have hitched on J. J. Dixwell's and we are to have the first lesson tomorrow.
   There is sundry news passing in the family of which other scribes will inform 
you.  I am dreadfully tired and have just finished mending a glass syphon which 
is in use for Daguerreotype distilling by the agency of an alcohol blowpipe, and 
   Tonight the Amphictyonic Council of the Sunday School met.  Queer and 
ridiculous.  Since then I have been to Dr. Jackson's to bring home Sarah.
   I only get over the page to say
           Good Night.   Yrs. ever, EDWARD.

Posted for your enjoyment.     Gary W. Ewer     

Return to: DagNews 1999

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