J. T. Ames

J. T. Ames is recorded twice in the Daily Republican newspaper, published in Springfield, Massachusetts on October 14, 1845. His name appears in a list of entries of the Hampden County Agricultural Fair under Specimens of fine arts which was held on October 8 & 9th. J. T. Ames possibly (James T.) from Cabotville (Chicopee) exhibited two daguerreotypes; J. Beals, Jr. of West Springfield exhibited 4 daguerreotypes; G. W. James probably (George W. James) from Springfield is listed with two entries first exhibiting twelve specimens of daguerreotypes and the second entry exhibiting four daguerreotypes; and Stock & Cooley who exhibited six paintings and four daguerreotypes.[1]

The second time he is mentioned was on September 29, 1851 also in the Daily Republican in an announcement for the Seventh Annual Cattle Show and Fair of the Hampden Agricultural Society…The following are the Committees on the various departments of the exhibition:…Under Paintings and Daguerreotypes.—T. W. Carter, Chicopee, James T. Ames, Chicopee, Edmund Freeman, Springfield.

In looking in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry he list a Joseph Ames as an artist and painter at 5½ Tremont Row from 1852-1856 the same address as Southworth and Hawes.  From 1857-1858 at 41 Tremont Row and 1859-1860 at 16 Summer Street.  He goes on to say that another source noted him as a daguerreian who gave assistance to Southworth and Pennell in their early stages (1840.)  John cites the business directory and WW as his sources.  W. W. is William Welling’s Photography in America: The Formative Years 1839-1900.  On page 20.  Welling writes Southworth & Pennell, meanwhile, at some point in the spring or summer of 1840, established a daguerreotype business in Cabotville, near Boston.  “We had the sympathy and substantial assistance of Messrs. Ames, Chase and Bemis.”  This information comes from The Philadelphia Photographer Volume 8, No. 94, October 1871 Page. 315-323. An Address To The National Photographic Association of the United States, Delivered at Cleveland, Ohio, June 1870.  By Albert Southworth. The passage is on page 317.

Checking The New York Historical Society’s Dictionary of Artist in America 1564-1860 there is a listing for Joseph Alexander Ames as working mostly in Boston from 1841-1847; he went to Italy in 1848, returning to Boston, visiting New York city in 1850, was in Baltimore, Maryland in 1870, and thereafter in New York City where he died on October 30, 1872.  There is no mention of an association with Southworth and Hawes, Southworth and Pennell or daguerreotyping.

In conclusion I believe that the attribution to Joseph Ames is based on the 5½ Tremont Row Address in Boston, not the Cabotville (Chicopee) location where Southworth & Pennell resided in 1840. Further research into J. T Ames (James T.) is needed, we know he made daguerreotypes in 1845 and still resided in Chicopee in 1851.  It is possible J. T. is the Ames mentioned in the Southworth Address to the National Photographic Association of the United States, not Joseph Ames.

[1] Three names J. T. Ames; J. Beals, Jr. and G. W. James are new name and not recorded in A Directory of Massachusetts Photographers, 1839-1900.

 

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