William Cowden

1851                56 Monroe Street, Wheeling, Virginia.[1]

1852-1855       56 Monroe Street, Wheeling, Virginia.

William Cowden was recorded in three advertisements and three announcements in the Wheeling Daily Intelligencer (Wheeling, Virginia).  The first advertisement ran from August 24, 1852 to August 30, 1853.  Wm. Cowden Daguerreotypist, Rooms No. 56 Monroe street, between the New Hotel and the Court House.

Likenesses taken in any required shade, and colored to represent the living complexion by a new style of coloring—warranted to never fade.  Pictures of all sizes, both single and in groups, put up in plain and fancy cases, at the lowest prices.  Likenesses of Children accurately taken.

The first announcement appeared on December 6, 1852.  The Fine Arts.—We saw at the Daguerrean rooms of Mr. Cowden, on Saturday, a fine specimen of the application of the Daguerrean process to paper, giving a picture all the softness and strength of the mezzotint engraving.  It was made at Cincinnati, but we think Cowden has the genius to equal it.  Mr. C. has carried the process of coloring daguerreotypes to great perfection.

The second announcement appeared on May 6, 1853.  It is Astonishing—If we may be allowed to say that anything now-a-days is astonishing—to witness the perfection to which the Daguerrean art has been carried.  The pictures now made by this process have a degree of beauty and perfection which might challenge the closest scrutiny of dame Nature herself.  With the history of this art in Wheeling our friend Mr. Cowden is closely identified.  He commenced his experiments when it was yet in its infancy, and has ever since pursued it with the enthusiasm of a true devotee, not only adopting the improvements of others, but making many valuable discoveries himself.  His rooms on Monroe street, near the McLure House, contains pictures which we have not seen surpassed in any of the Eastern or Western cities.

The second advertisement ran from August 30, 1853 to September 19, 1855.  Daguerreotypes.  Sky And Side Light Arrangement, Likenesses taken with all the recent improvements, without any unnatural whiteness of hair, or grey appearance on black dresses.  Every style of cases always on hand.  Price from one dollar upwards. 

Rooms, No. 65 Monroe street, near the Court House.  Wm. Cowden.  Aug30.

The third announcement appeared on January 16, 1855.  Daguerreotypes—We invite attention to the [ ? ] notice of Mr. Cowden, to be found in [another] column this morning.  It is well known that Mr. C. has spent a large portion of his life in [presenting] himself in a knowledge of this art, and that he is an experimenter and operator in its earliest stages, and has since been constantly engaged in the business.  His claims are therefore indisputable.  His rooms are at his old stand, Monroe street, a short distance below the Court House.

The third advertisement ran on January 16 to October 19, 1855.  Daguerreotypes.  Side and Skylight Arrangement.  Likenesses taken with all the recent improvements, without and unnatural whiteness of hair, or grey appearance on black dresses.  Every style of Cases always on hand.

Rooms, No. 56 Monroe st., near the Court House.  jan16.  Wm. Cowden

William Cowden is recorded as being active in Wheeling, Virginia in 1851.


[1] Craig’s Daguerreian Registry.

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