Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre (1787-1851) announced the invention of the daguerreotype process in 1839. Almost immediately, refinements to technique and equipment were introduced, which considerably reduced exposure times and made the daguerreotype wildly popular as a medium for portraiture until the mid-1850s. Daguerreotypes were highly vulnerable to surface damage from abrasion and tarnishing. Therefore, they were protected by a metal mat and covered by a sheet of glass sealed and fitted into a case.

Misa Jeffereis

(Unknown: Untitled portrait of a man)


Unknown photographer

Untitled portrait of a man. 1854

Daguerreotype (half plate)

5 9/16 x 4 5/16 x 5/16 in. overall plate size

Henry Art Gallery, extended loan of Joseph and Elaine Monsen, EL 79/238