1847 Address Unknown, Boston, Massachusetts
Champney of the firm White & Champney were recorded in the Boston Daily Evening Transcript on November 24, 1847. They were not listed in Boston City Directories between 1840 and 1850.
Another Great Step In The Arts And On A Great Occasion. [for the Transcript] At the laying of the corner stone of the Cochituate Reservoir on Saturday, the Daguerreotype apparatus was employed by two young artists of this city, Messrs. White & Champney. Their immediate design was to procure accurate and full views of the things visible, and of all the persons, public and private, who took part in or attended the proceedings, preliminary to the execution of a grand painting of the entire scene. This is the first time that the beautiful and effective invention of Daguerre has been availed of, in order to secure a representation of a public ceremony of the kind. Owning to unaccountable circumstances, the impressions upon the plates were less brilliant than had been anticipated, but not fewer than three several views were obtained, each peculiar, comprehensive, and complete in itself, one soon after the procession halted and during the prayer, another as the contractors were letting down the corner stone upon the box in the cavity below, and the third in the midst of the mayor’s address. The number of human heads, thus fixed by the light of Heaven upon the polished metal plates of the artist, is absolutely countless. They are of all sizes—varying from that of a pin’s head, to that of “a small pea.” Among the most conspicuous likenesses are those of the Mayor, Alderman, Common Councilmen, and Water Commissioners, Mr. Whittlesey, member of congress, the Chaplin, Ex-Governor Armstrong and Ex-Mayor Quincy and the offers of the city. The citizens and spectators generally are in all sorts of groups and positions—some presenting the whole and some but a portion of their faces and persons. The various pieces of machinery on the premises and buildings in the vicinity, are also distinctly seen. On one side are the members of the band with their brass instruments glistening in the beams of light, and here and there, are troops of school children looking on the movements of the City Fathers, or watching the workmen about the grounds.
These extraordinary Daguerreotypes will doubtless be esteemed extremely precious—particularly at a future day; and it is gratifying to learn that from them are forthwith to be made, of suitable size, a perfect and magnificent painting of the ceremonies of laying this corner stone, and of the scenery, just as they were on this occasion, engraved by the flashing of the sun upon the silver tablets of Daguerre.