Tag Archives: Daguerreotypist

J. H. Wilson

1848                Room at Duncan’s New Block, Upstairs, Joliet, Illinois.

J. H. Wilson was recorded in one announcement on July 25, 1848 in the Juliet Signal (Joliet, Illinois).  Daguerreotype Miniatures.—J. H. Wilson, Daguerreotypist, whose room is in Duncan’s new block, up-stairs, is prepared to take likenesses in a superior style.  We have examined some specimens of his work, and do not hesitate to pronounce them the most natural and beautiful of any we have seen, that have been taken in this place heretofore.—Those wishing their likenesses taken must call soon, as he will remain but a few days longer.

J. H. Wilson is not recorded in other photographic directories.

B. S. Wilson

1855-1857       Elmendorf Building, opposite the American Hotel, Penn Yan, New York.

B. S. Wilson was recorded in two announcements, two advertisements and mentioned in a third advertisement in the Penn Yan Democrat (Penn-Yan, New York) and one advertisement in the  Yates County Chronicle (Penn Yan, New York).  The first announcement appeared on September 26, 1855 in the Penn Yan Democrat (Penn-Yan, New York).  Yates County Fair.  The annual Fair and Cattle Show of the Yates County Agricultural Society came off per announcement, on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday last….S. B. Wilson, Daguerrean Artist, exhibited several beautiful specimens of his skill in the line of Ambrotypes, Photographs, &c.

The second announcement appeared on October 17, 1855.  But few are probably aware of the rapid progress that has been made in bringing the art of Daguerreotyping to perfection.  The latest, and we may say the greatest improvement that has yet been made in the art, is that of taking Ambrotypes and Photographs on glass.  The Ambrotypes are pictures taken on the back of plate glass, forming a picture that is seen in any light, and its natural position, not reversed as in Daguerreotypes.  The picture is covered with a gum that hardens and forms a secure protection from dampness or dust.  Indeed the picture can be destroyed only by breaking the glass.  It is seen through the glass, and is equally clear and distinct seen at any angle.  They are afforded at about the same rates as Daguerreotypes.

The Photographs are also taken on glass, and then by chemical process, the impression is transferred on to paper, presenting an appearance equal to the finest steel engraving, and any number of impressions can be taken from the same plate.  Bring on light paper you are enabled to present your distant friends with a beautiful and accurate picture of yourself, and that at a trifling expense.

Mr. Wilson, successor to Mr. Flower, at his rooms, opposite the Yates County Bank, is now prepared to furnish all who wish with either Daguerreotypes, Ambrotypes, or Photographs in the highest style of the art.

The first advertisement ran from October 31, 1855 to February 25, 1857.  Photographic And Daguerrean Gallery.  B. S. Wilson would inform the citizens of Penn Yan and surrounding country that he has now introduced the new and wonderful art of taking Likenesses on Paper and Glass.

While he is prepared to take these new pictures in the best of style, his facilities for producing Daguerreotypes are not inferior, but superior to what they have ever been, and all wishing the regular Daguerreotype, can rely on getting good pictures as heretofore.  The rooms are open and free at all hours, and all are invited to call and examine specimens.    B. S. Wilson.

Successor to S. J. Fowler, nearly opposite the Yates Co. Bank, Penn. Yan.  Instructions carefully given in the art, and apparatus furnished cheap.  Penn Yan, Oct. 31, 1855.

The third advertisement ran from February 21, 1856 to March 5, 1857 in  the Yates County Chronicle (Penn Yan, New York).  Pictures Taken On Paper And Glass.  The undersigned after being to considerable expense in [ ? ] and preparing to take pictures as above, is now enabled to put up pictures with Neatness And Dispatch.

And now while I return my sincere thanks and gratitude to the citizens of Penn Yan and vicinity, for the liberal patronage that they have given me, I would say to them that I have a new process for Glass pictures, that surpasses anything before [ ? ].  The advantages in taking in this style of picture is 1st.  You do not sit more than [ ? ].  2d.  It does not reverse but makes a positive Picture.  3d.  It is secured from dampness.  These pictures are decided by the most competent Judges, to be [as] much superior to the Plate Picture, as a Steel Engraving is to a Wood Cut Picture.

My pictures shall be as Cheap as the Cheapest; please give me a call, and you shall be [ ? ] or no charge.

Rooms in Elmendorf building, opposite the Yates Co. Bank, formerly occupied by S. J. Fowler.  B. S. Wilson.

N. B.  Pictures taken on plate as before, if desired.  A good assortment of Locket, Pins, and a variety of Cases, always on hand, all of the latest style.

Daguerreotype [ ? ] for sale to Artists and sent to all parts by Express if desired.

The fourth advertisement appeared in the Penn Yan Democrat (Penn-Yan, New York) on April 1, 1857.  Daguerreotypes.—Mrs. Lansing has taken the rooms formerly occupied by S. B. Wilson, opposite the American, where she will be pleased to furnish such as may wish with a superior quality of Ambrotypes, Daguerreotypes, &c.  We have been shown several specimens of her work, and they are certainly very fine.

B. S. or S. B. Wilson is not recorded in other photographic directories.

A. Wilson

1852-1853       Lafayette Street, over Dr. Buffington’s Office, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

A. Wilson was recorded in two announcements and two advertisements in The Daily Comet (Baton Rouge, Louisiana).  The first announcement appeared on November 14, 1852.  It will be seen that Wilson has reopened his Daguerreotype saloon on Lafayette street.  He is well fitted up and takes excellent pictures.

The first advertisement ran from November 14, 1852 to September 30, 1853. 1852 November 14.  The Daily Comet (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) November 14, 1852.  Daguerreotype Miniatures.  I have just returned from the west—and I am prepared for business.  Now whilst the opportunity offers, is the time to secure a picture.

Obtain the shadow’ ere the substance fades.

When our friends, relatives and sweethearts are with us, it would seem useless to have a likeness of them, but the future may separate us; Ay, death may take them away forever, and then a correct and life-like resemblance of them, is invaluable.

I have all the late styles of cases, Gold Enameled, Papier Maché, Pearls, &c. Gold Lockets, Pins and Bracelets.

Pictures taken at $2. Rooms on Lafayette street—over Dr. Buffington’s office, where the public is invited to call and examine specimens.  A. Wilson.   Nov. 14.

The second advertisement ran from January 16 to July 14, 1853. 

Daguerreotypes.  Be Taken

And for your likeness sit,

I know it’s time enough my dear,

And you have promised it;

But time is on the wing my love,

As Poets oft has sung,

And you’ll be fading soon my dear,

So get it while you’re young.

Wilson’s Office Lafayette Street—Pictures taken in Cloudy weather as well as Sunny weather.

The second announcement appeared on November 10, 1853.  Mr. A. Wilson has returned and re-opened his Daguerreotype in Lafayette street.  Mr. W, is by all odds the best Daguerrean artist we have had in this city, and doubt much if he has his superior in the State.  His saloon is in the second story of the late residence of Judge Chas. Tessier, where he may be found daily, during business hours.

A. Wilson is not recorded in other photographic directories.  It appears according to the first announcement that Wilson has visited Baton Rouge, Louisiana prior to November 1852.  It is unknow where else he may have visited or where his gallery is located.

Theodore S. Williams

1850                Address Unknown, Lynn, Massachusetts.

1854-1858       49 Union Street, Lynn, Massachusetts.[1]

Theodore S. Williams was recorded in one advertisement in the Salem Register (Salem, Massachusetts) and two broadsides.  The advertisement appeared on September 30, 1850.  List of Premiums & Gratuities.  Awarded by the Essex County Agricultural Society, September 26th, 1850. …Fancy Articles [The following Report of the Chairman of the Committee, Fitch Poole, Esq., of Danvers, contains the award of premiums under this head.]…

Daguerreotype Portraits and specimens of Penmanship by T. S. Williams, of Lynn.  These were quite creditable to the artist.  The wonderful discovery of this art of sun painting may yet enlarge the boundaries of Science to an extent once scarcely imagined.  Already the stars have been Daguerreotyped and fixed on the silver plate of the artist.  Why then may not portions of the moon be so represented as to exhibit a part of her disk with that perfection which belongs to this art and then the plate be examined by a powerful microscope which shall let us into the hidden secrets of our Satellite.  We make this suggestion to Mr. Williams with the hope that he will improve the hint, and some fine day—or night, introduce the committee to that noted individual, the “Man in the Moon.”

The firstBroadside is from the Lynn Historical Society Collection.  Patent Mezzotypes and Crystalotypes.  T. S. Williams Beg leave to return his thanks to the Ladies and Gentlemen of Lynn for their liberal share of patronage, and to make his yearly report.  For the year ending Sept. 1st, he has taken over two thousand likenesses, making an increase over the year before of eight hundred.  Now this fact shows at once that the people of Lynn appreciate true merit, and also shows that No. 49 Union Street is the place to get a good Daguerreotype at a reasonable price.

The proprietor intends to give his patrons the benefit of every improvement in the art, therefore he has purchased the Patent Right Whipple, Cutting & Co., of Boston to make Pictures on Glass and Paper.

The Mezzotype is taken on glass, put up and protected by a cement that is neither affected by heat, cold, nor dampness, and consequently will not fade or sport.  They are pronounced by good judges to be superior to Daguerreotypes.

Crystalotypes.  The likeness is first taken on glass, then transferred to paper by the agency of light, in unlimited numbers, as from a copper plate; being equal in beauty to the finest engraving.  If a Teacher or Clergyman wishes to give each one of his pupils or church members a likeness of himself, he can obtain any number of positives of paper by only one sitting once for a negative on glass, and at a cheap rate of about 25 cents apiece by the hundred, much larger, better, and more durable than any cheap Daguerreotypes.

Mr. W. would respectfully invite all teachers and Clergymen in Lynn, to call at his rooms and take a sitting, and for the trouble of so doing each one will be presented with a large sized Photograph of themselves.  An early call is solicited.

A quick process for taking Children, which seldom fails; the forenoon is the best time.  Please call and see specimens.

Daguerreotypes taken in the best style from $1 to $20 and warranted.  Cheap pictures for 50 cents in a good Case.

T. S. Williams, Proprietor.

C. G. Hill, Assistant Operator.

No. 49 Union Street, opposite Central Depot.

The secondBroadside is from the Harvey Zucker’s Collection.  Williams’ Sunbeam Gallery!!  No. 49 Union St., 49,—Lynn.

Immortal sun, great source of light,

Thou that maketh all things bright,

By thy aid and mysterious power,

nature smiles after a genial shower.

By thy aid we are able to trace

The features of the human face,

And upon the polished plate impress

Face and form, with lifelike truthfulness.

Surprising art! by which we lend

our countenance to an absent friend,

Or at the close of life’s eventful career,

Leave a memento for those we hold dear.

Next Thursday will be thanksgiving day,

Some meet for sport, others to pray;

But Williams will his favorite art pursue,

To save the shadows of the noble crew.

For a Holiday Gift of all the rest,

A type of yourself is surely the best,

Then hie for Union Street,—No. Forty-nine,

And get your Picture in a Case or Locket fine.

I have made arrangements with Mr. Hill—a first rate Artist—to assist me during the winter, therefore I shall be prepared to take any number of Pictures at short notice, from the smallest to the largest.  My apparatus is considered the most complete in this country, having a Quick Camera, made expressly for taking Children, by which we can get a perfect likeness in Two Seconds of time; therefore persons wishing for a Good Likeness, at a low price, are invited to call before going else where.

Pictures warranted perfect, or no charge will be made.

Theodore S. Williams is recorded in other photographic directories as being active in Lynn, Massachusetts from 1854 to 1858.


[1] A Directory Of Massachusetts Photographers 1839-1900.

S. Williams

1852-1853       Rooms where once stood the Vermont House, Brattleboro, Vermont.

S. Williams was recorded in one advertisement that ran from January 26 to July 6, 1853 in the Windham County Democrat (Brattleboro, Vermont).  Daguerreotypes.  The public are respectfully requested to call at the Worcester Daguerrean Gallery (where once stood the Vermont House) and examine specimens executed in the highest perfection of the art.—In making deep-toned, fine finished and life-like pictures, the subscriber challenges competition—Types taken as well in cloudy as in clear weather.  Perfect satisfaction guaranteed or no charge made.  Please call—N. B.  Instructions given in the art if requested.  Terms reasonable.  S. Williams.  Dec. 21.

S. Williams is not recorded in other photographic directories as being active in Brattleboro, Vermont.  It is possible, but unknown, that this is Simeon Williams who was active in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1849.

George B. Williams

1841                Old Taunton Hotel, Taunton, Massachusetts.

George B. Williams was recorded in two advertisement in the Taunton Whig (Taunton, Massachusetts).  The first advertisement ran from August 25 to September 22, 1841.  Miniatures Taken By Daguerreotype.  George B. Williams, would inform the inhabitants of Taunton and vicinity, that he will take Miniatures by the Daguerreotype process, in the latest and most approved style.  Having completed a regular course of instruction, in Boston, at great expense, he solicits the public patronage.

Ladies and Gentlemen are invited to call and examine the specimens; they are assured that as the miniatures are taken by rays of light, they must be perfect.  Every miniature warranted to give satisfaction.  Price $3.50.

Specimens may be seen at s. O. Dunbar’s store, and at the Daguerreotype room, in the old Taunton Hotel, second door of the Post Office.

The second advertisement ran from November 17 to December 1, 1841.  Splendid Improvement in the Art of taking Miniature Daguerreotype.  Particular Notice.

C. B. (Sic.) Williams, having become acquainted with very important improvements in taking Miniatures by the Daguerreotype process, has returned to Taunton with new Camera and apparatus; and informs the ladies and gentlemen of this and the adjoining towns, that he has now taken the room over Mr. Cooper’s (late Sweet & Cooper’s) store, where he will furnish Likenesses in a style warranted to be satisfactory to all.  The public may rest assured that perfect likenesses will be given, or no charge will be made.  A sitting of two or three minutes only is required to take a good Miniature.

Price $3,50 including a beautiful Morocco case.

The room has now occupied is much preferable to his old room, on account of the superior light.  Sitters will not be annoyed by persons passing by, it being upstairs.

N. B. Room open for visitors at all hours of the day.  Specimens may be seen at S. O. Dunbar’s and F. S. Monroe’s stores.  Also, at the Daguerreotype room.  Ladies and gentlemen are respectfully invited to call.

George B. Williams is not recorded in other photographic directories.

D. R. Williams

1844-1845       8 Merchants Exchange, Cleveland, Ohio.

D. R. Williams was recorded in four advertisement, two were recorded in the Cleveland Weekly Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio) and two in the were from the Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio).  The first advertisement from the Cleveland Weekly Plain Dealer ran from December 4, 1844 to March 5, 1845.  Coming Right Side Up With Care, Colored Photographic Miniatures.  Mr. Williams, late from the east, with all the recent improvements from Paris and New York, has opened Rooms in the Merchants’ Exchange, where he will remain for a short time to give the citizens of Cleveland and vicinity a rare chance of obtaining an Exact Likeness of themselves, or friends.  Painted Portraits copied with the most minute accuracy, thereby enabling each member of a family to be in possession of the likeness of a deceased or distant friend.  Portraits taken by this Late improved process are possed of [a] degree of clearness, accuracy and beauty, seldom if ever seen among the works of art.

Instructions carefully given, and the best quality of apparatus and materials furnished to order.  No. 8 Merchants Exchange.  Cleveland, Ohio.

The second advertisement ran from March 5 to April 2, 1845.  Williams’ Daguerreotype Portraits Colored.  Delays are Dangerous.  Improve Your Time.  Mr. Williams will remain in Cleveland until the opening of navigation; and will be happy to wait on any that may favor him with a call in his profession.  He still continues to “daub his pictures” in a style not to be surpassed in the West.  Pictures put up at eastern prices, and warranted not to cut in the eye, or run down at the heel; or, in other words, warranted to retain their colors.  Pictures made by this process are not troubled with the blues, and become a mere shadow in a few years, as those of the old process.  The citizens are respectfully invited to call and examine his specimens.  Cleveland, March 5th. 1845.

The third advertisement ran from April 7 to May 17, 1845 in the Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio).  Williams’ Daguerreotype Portraits Colored.  Delays are Dangerous.  Improve Your Time.  Mr. Williams will remain in Cleveland until the opening of navigation; and will be happy to wait on any that may favor him with a call in his profession.  He still continues to “daub his pictures” in a style not to be surpassed in the West.  Pictures put up at eastern prices, and warranted not to cut in the eye, or run down at the heel; or, in other words, warranted to retain their colors.  Pictures made by this process are not troubled with the blues, and become a mere shadow in a few years, as those of the old process.  The citizens are respectfully invited to call and examine his specimens.  Cleveland, March 5th. 1845.

The fourth advertisement ran from May 19 to June 2, 1845. On Hand Again More Humbuging.  Mr. Williams, Having just returned from the east with some of the more recent improvements in the Daguerrian Art, flatters himself that he will be able to please the most fastidious.

Those that have not heretofore availed themselves of the opportunity of getting an exact likeness, would do will to call soon, as his stay in the city will be governed by the patronage he receives; therefore, delay not—procrastination is the thief of time, don’t forget it.

Instructions carefully given, and the best Cameras and materials furnished to order.  Merchant’s Exchange, No. 2, First Gallery.  D. R. Williams.

D. R. Williams is not recorded in other photographic directories as being active in Cleveland, Ohio.  Craig’s Daguerreian Registry does record a D. R. Williams in Buffalo, NY in 1844 and in Detroit, Michigan in 1846.  It is unknown if they are the same person, further research is needed to determine if they are or not.  

Williams & Monroe

1856                Room in Bennets Building, Main Street, Brownville, Nebraska.

Williams & Monroe were recorded in one announcement in the Nebraska Advertiser  (Brownville, Nemaha County, N. T. [Nebraska]) on June 28, 1856.  Daguerreian Gallery.—Messrs. Williams & Monroe Daguerreian Artist arrived in our place this week and have Taken a room in Bennets building, Main street, where they propose to take the “good looking’ faces” of all who will favor them with a call.  Their pictures evince Artistic Skill, and we are confident they will give satisfaction.

Williams & Monroe are not recorded in other photographic directories.

A. Williams

1856                413 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[1]

A. Williams was recorded in the Photographic and fine Arts Journal (New York, New York) on April 1, 1856.  In an article entitled the Photographic Galleries of America.  Number Two, Philadelphia. The author visited 57 Galleries in Philadelphia.

Williams, Market St. — Nothing but daguerreotypes. Pictures dirty, dim and crying aloud for improvement. May they not appeal to stony hearts.

A. Williams is recorded in other photographic directories but is included here because of the first hand account of his work.


[1] Not all first names or complete addresses were recorded in article.   Directory of Pennsylvania Photographers, 1839-1900 (Linda A. Ries & Jay W. Ruby) and Craig’s Daguerreian Registry was used to assist in identification when possible first name and address were added. 

Amos Willes

1849                Rooms in the Office of Willes & Caine, Seymour’s Building, Ravenna, Ohio.

Amos Willes was recorded in one advertisement that ran from June 6 to 20, 1849 in the Portage Sentinel (Ravenna, Ohio). Daguerrian Artist.  Rooms in the Office of Willes & Caine, Seymour’s Building.  The subscriber having just returned from the city with a large and entirely new apparatus would respectfully invite the Ladies and Gentlemen of Ravenna and vicinity to call at his rooms and examine his specimens.  He will put up Miniatures in Lockets, Breast Pins, Bracelets or Cases to suit persons calling at his rooms.  By the aid of new chemicals which are not liable to be injured by the weather he flatters himself that he can give as good satisfaction as any operator this side of the city.  He always holds himself in readiness to leave his rooms for the purpose of taking likenesses of persons who are unable to visit his rooms, also of persons deceased.

Instructions given in the art with the latest improvements on reasonable terms.—Apparatus furnished if desired to persons commencing the business.  Amos Willes.  Ravenna, June 5, 1849.

Amos Willes is not recorded in other photographic directories as being active in Ravenna, Ohio in 1849.