Tag Archives: Mathew Brady

Nahum S. Bennett

There are a series of announcements and advertisements in the Washington, D. C. Newspapers that place Nahum S. Bennett in D. C. from 1850 to late 1852.  He was first recorded in The Daily Union (Washington, D. C.) in an announcement on August 21, 1850.

We are indebted to Mr. N. S. Bennett, of this city, for a daguerreotype likeness of Mr. Millard Fillmore, the present President of the United States, and lithographed by Mr. A. Newman.  It is an admirable likeness, and beautifully executed.  The President’s face is calculated to grace the art of the daguerreotypist or the painter; but those features are too apt to undergo a premature revolution from the wrinkles of care, which power, if faithfully administered, stamps with its seal upon the brow.…

In an announcement that was published in the Daily American Telegraph (Washington, D. C.) on July 13, 1852.  A Beautiful Daguerreotype.  The most perfect and admirable daguerreotype likeness we have ever seen has just been made of General Winfield Scott, by Mr. Bennett, of this city.  It is of very large size, and as clear and distinct as the reflection from a polished mirror.

We learn that the old General sat for this likeness with cheerfulness and patience, though under protest, declaring that so frequently has he of late been called upon to sit to artists of various kinds that he must henceforth refuse.  If others have succeeded as well as Mr. Bennett, we do not, indeed, think further efforts are needed.

Also on the 13th the following advertisement appears Rocky Mountain Indians!  Daguerreotype likenesses of the principal Chiefs of the Different Rocky Mountain tribes of Indians on exhibition at Bennett’s National Gallery, Penna. av., between 6th and 7th sts.

The last Daguerreotype, from life, of the departed patriot, Henry Clay, may be seen at Bennett’s National Gallery, Pa. av., between 6th and 7th sts.

In an article entitled The Pueblo Indians in the Daily American Telegraph (Washington, D. C.) on August 13, 1852 in part….Bennett, the skilful and popular daguerreotypist, took their portraits yesterday.  They were highly gratified, and, when told that each of them should have a copy of his own likeness, their pleasure knew no bounds.  The old man of the party (aged sixty-four) looked at his image for a while, and then said:  “When I am dead, and gone to heaven, I shall still live in this.”…

In an advertisement in the Daily American Telegraph.  (Washington, D. C.) on September 20, 1852 we learn that a portrait of General Scott is being painted by Stanley[1] which is possibly the best portrait of the General ever painted.  It is from a most beautiful daguerreotype by Bennett, of this city.

The last advertisement in the Daily American Telegraph (Washington, D. C.) appeared on October 26 and ran until November 18, 1852.  Crayon Daguerreotypes.  This style of Photographic Pictures was patented by John A. Whipple, of Boston, about six years since[2], and introduced into this city by Bennett in 1850, as many who have had them know.  Mr. B. continues to take them, in a superior manner, at his Gallery, Pennsylvania avenue, between 6 and 7th streets.

Published in an article about early Daguerreotypist in Washington, D. C. a letter from Samuel Rush Seibert dated October 19, 1896 is included.  It is in reply to Samuel C. Busey’s inquiry about early Daguerreotypist in Washington.  He states in part “Mr. N. S. Bennett had a Daguerreotype gallery a few doors west, on the same avenue, in a building which was on the east side and adjoining L. D. Gilman’s drug store. During the winter of 1851 and 1852 I negotiated with him for the purchase of the gallery for Marcus A. Root and John H. Clark, who immediately obtained possession and refitted the skylight and rooms, and there produced many fine specimens of the Daguerrean art.[3]

Based on the last advertisement of Bennett’s (October 26, 1852) and the first ad for Root in the Washington papers (December 19, 1852) the sale of the gallery had to be in October-November 1852.  Interesting John H. Clark[e] does not appear in any advertisements found in the D. C. newspapers.  According to Laurie Baty’s unpublished Directory of Washington, D. C. Photographers Clark was a pupil of Root’s and was the operator of his D. C. gallery.

Bennett was on board the steamer Empire which left Troy, NY around 7 P. M. on Friday July 15, 1853 heading to New York City, when it was in a collision with the sloop General Livingston about 2 A. M on the 16th on the west shore of the Hudson River, opposite Clinton Point, about two and a half miles above New-Hamburg, and six below Poughkeepsie.   A number of people were killed or injured in the accident.  The extent of Bennett injuries are unknown it is reported in the Daguerreian Journal that he did lose a valuable collection of daguerreotypes including a whole plate of the last portrait taken of Henry Clay, sixteen specimens of members of the U. S. Senate, Likenesses of the Rocky Mountain Indian Tribes, and a portrait of Billy Bow Legs and John Howard Payne[4], who was an American actor, poet, playwright, and author.

No other advertisements, notices or articles have been found in any of the Washington newspapers that I have access to, until the three advertisements in the Evening Star discussed previously about Smith Bennett who was award a silver medal at the 1855 Metropolitan Mechanic’s Institute while he was in Alexandria, Virginia.

Reported in the Evening Star (Washington, D. C.) on February 10, 1857.  That N. S. Bennett has sent an application to the Mechanics’ Fair to exhibit ambrotypes and daguerreotypes.  Then on March 31 (in the same paper) a list was published of the premiums awarded at The Fair…Class 30….

Brady, N. Y.—photographs—Silver Medal.                                                                                 Whitehurst, Washington—ambrotypes—Silver Medal.                                                               Whitehurst, Washington—daguerreotypes—First award of merit.                                         Langenheim, Philadelphia—stereoscopes—Silver Medal.                                                      Vannerson, Washington—photographs, ambrotypes and daguerreotypes—Bronze Medal.   Whitehurst, Washington—photographs—Diploma.                                                                       Cutting & Turner, Boston—ambrotypes—Diploma                                                                                  N. S. Bennett, Alexandria—daguerreotypes—Diploma.

Bennett is reported to have been active in 1860 in Alexandria at 69 King Street.  At this time I have been unable to find directories for Alexandria to verify activity dates and address for Bennett from 1855-1860+.

[1] Probably John Mix Stanley.

[2] Crayon Daguerreotypes were patented by Whipple on January 23, 1849, Patent No. 6,056.

[3] In an article published in the Records of the Columbia Historical Society, Washington, D. C.  Vol. 3, P. 81-95.  Entitled Early History of Daguerreotypy in the City of Washington, by Samuel C. Busey.

[4] Article in the New York Times, July 18, 1853, P. 1.

Silas A. Holmes

Why write about Silas A. Holmes? I knew he was important because he patented the stereoscopic camera in 1854, and while research the New York Daily Tribune I also could not help but see the similarities in the style of advertising between Holmes and other photographers like Tyler and Company and C. R. Rees.  Interesting that there is a connection and the common denominator is C. R Rees.  As I explore the time line below many question still are left unanswered about Rees and the possible partnership with Holmes.  How long did Rees stay involved with Holmes at 289 Broadway?  Did Rees take over the business after Harrison & Holmes partnership ended?  Another question is who was G. Holmes? Was this a typo or someone else operating at 289 Broadway? As I continue researching the Tribune and other newspapers I hope to answer some of these questions.

To date I know little about Holmes’ early years from the newspapers. There was an advertisement signed by S. A. Holmes, News Agent, Park Row on January 1, 1847, but there is no proof that this is Silas A. Holmes the Daguerreotypist.  John Craig[i] records him as being active in 1848-1849 at 289 Broadway in partnership with Charles C. Harrison.  I suspect that John was looking at one directory dated 1848-1849, not a single directory dated 1848, and another one for 1849.  Recent discovery in the Evening Post dated July 17, 1848 announces the partnership and gallery at 289 Broadway.  An advertisement appears on December 2, 1850 for Holmes with no mention of Harrison, and a second advertisement that appears on January 7, 1851 that he is late Harrison & Holmes.  The first newspaper accounts in the New York Daily Tribune for him was on March 26, 1851 and reads in part that he has a fine establishment with two splendid sky-lights, is long and well experienced in the art, and also stated that he charges moderate prices.

On September 13, 1851 in an advertisement in the New York Daily Tribune he states that Forty Thousand Daguerreotypes sold at Holmes’s Gallery, No. 289 Broadway, in five years.  The last line of the ad says that all the rooms are on the fourth floor of 289 Broadway, late Harrison & Holmes.  This brings up the fact that Holmes was in business at 289 Broadway in 1847.  It is unknown if the partnership with Harrison started that early but it is a safe bet that the partnership probably ended in late 1850 based on the advertisement of December 2, 1850.

The first mention (to date) of Charles C. Harrison was in the New York Daily Tribune on April 26, 1851. It mentions that Gurney is using a powerful instrument manufactured in this city by C. C. Harrison.  On October 28, 1851 an article appears about Harrison’s cameras and that he won a gold medal at the Fair at Castle Island, the following day the list of Premiums awarded at the Fair and Harrison’s address is listed at 85 Duane Street.

October 1, 1851 Holmes advertises that he has taken Daguerreotypes of the Monuments, Tombs, and Vaults in Greenwood Cemetery and that duplicate copies can be purchased at his gallery. Later that month October 29th he is awarded a silver medal at the American Institute Fair for his views taken at Greenwood.  The following day he announces that he can be found at the cemetery until he has taken pictures of the entire collection.

If you look at Craig’s work he states that Holmes was listed in New York City from 1848-1860, at 289 Broadway from 1848-1859, from 1859-1860 at 691 Broadway. He goes on to say that he was a partner in Rees & Co., Ca. 1853.  No advertisement for Holmes have been recorded between November 13, 1852 to June 2, 1854 in a partnership or alone.  His advertising has been to this point sporadic, there will be several ads in a month and then he won’t advertise for several month.  Always the advertisements only run for one day.[ii]  Craig reports that Rees was active in New York from 1853-1855.  From 1853-1855 at 289 Broadway and also listed in as being active at 385 Broadway in 1854-1855.

The first advertisement for Rees & Co. appears in the New York Daily Tribune on December 8, 1852—Rees and Co. advertise 25 Cent Daguerreotypes, No. 289 Broadway, that they are taking pictures by a new process late from Germany, with the application of machinery which enables them to take 150 pictures daily. On December 30 they advertise 150 to 300 daily.  On April 26, 1853 he advertises again—The Two Shilling Daguerreotype System originated by Rees & Co., with their new German process and power plate machine to take 300 pictures daily, proves the greatest feature in art of all modern improvements—it upsets the old fogies in the profession and the small potato clique who attempt to rival and imitate their work.  Some nude professors of model artist notoriety, who claim years of famous experience in the art, wake up amazed that a poor German gentleman with enterprise and invention, should have introduced a system of picture-making which no rival can imitate, and with which it is leading him on to fame and fortune, notwithstanding the fog and fogyism and inventions of the enemy.  Rooms No. 289 Broadway.

In a June 9th 1853 advertisement Rees states that they are doing 300 pictures daily and that they are using a German invention of machine power and rotary chemical apparatus to make their images. January 23, 1854 they are now making 400 daily pictures. March 22, 1854 advertisement—Great Improvement In Daguerreotyping.—The New York Daguerreotype Company have invented a double working Camera to take two portraits at once together with other improvements.  They are now taking 500 pictures daily, at 25 cents and upwards.  The last advertisement for Rees (by name) appeared on July 8th Wanted—The whole world of humanity to know that the first quality Daguerreotype Portraits are taken by Professor Reese, No. 289 Broadway. It’s interesting to note that there is no mention of Holms in any of Rees’s advertisements.

On May 30, 1854 Holmes was granted a patent No. 10,987 for taking stereoscope or other daguerreotypes, also referred to in advertisements as the Double Camera for taking two portraits at once. The question is what was Rees’s connection in this?  We might never know.  What is known is that the two shared the same address, 289 Broadway.  There must have been a connection or a partnership between the two based on the March 22 advertisement announcing the double camera.  The similarities in the advertisements between Rees; Tyler & Company and Holmes is hard to overlook and needs further research.  The terminology is very similar.  A lot of the advertisements found for Rees in both New York and Richmond, Virginia and Tyler also in Richmond, and in Memphis, Tennessee, use the same terminology “600 hundred (or more) taken daily” and they all are using the double camera and machine/steam power to make their images.

In the June 2, 1854 advertisement for Holmes the following ad appears. New Invention In Daguerreotyping.—By reference to the last list of patents granted May 30, 1854, S. A. Holmes, the Daguerreotypist, No. 289 Broadway, has been honored with a patent for his invention of the Double Camera for taking two portraits at once.  Rights of use, manufacture and sale of the Double Cameras for sale by the proprietor at his office.  No. 289 Broadway.

For the next several months Holmes advertises that he is taking 25 cent daguerreotypes, stereoscopic pictures and sun pictures. On March 28, 1855 he starts using the term Depot of Art to describe the gallery.  On May 2, 1855 the advertising takes a different twist—Photograph   Portraits for $1 to $5—Daguerreotypes 25 and 50 cents; Stereoscope Pictures, $1.  Taken by Holmes’ United States Patent Double Camera.  Depot of the New York Picture Club composed of 20 Artists taking 600 daily by German Steam Power, No. 289 Broadway.

On May 24, 1855 the following ad appears for the 289 Broadway address—Irish Artists—25 Cent Daguerreotypes.—Prof. Buffer of Dublin has arrived with his celebrated company of 25 Irish picture-makers, and has taken bunks at 289 Broadway for the season. Buffer & Co.

So far I have recorded 80 advertisements between June 2, 1854 – June 25, 1856. There are fifteen different ways the studio is identified.  20 times by the address only, 289 Broadway; 6 times by Depot of Art, 289 Broadway;  3 time by The Picture Factory, 289 Broadway; 1 time by the Depot of Economical Pictures, 289 Broadway;  9 times by Holmes, 289 Broadway;  1 time by the Irish Artists, 289 Broadway, Buffer & Co.; 2 times New York Picture Co., 289 Broadway; 1 time by Wholesale Picture Depot, 289 Broadway; 1 time as the Picture Company, 289 Broadway;  2 times as the Sky Parlors, 289 Broadway;  12 times as the Artist Club, 289 Broadway;  2 times as Holmes Art Depot , 289 Broadway;  3 times Depot of Machine Portraits, 289 Broadway;  5 times as Depot at 289 Broadway; and twice as G. Holmes.  What’s going on?

On August 1, 1855 Mathew Brady is the first to introduce Ambrotypes to New York.

On August 13th William Augur Tomlinson announces that he also is making Ambrotypes and that he holds Cuttings patent rights.  Repeatedly advertises this fact as Brady and others advertise that they are making Ambrotypes.  On October  11th, Holmes advertises New Discovery In Art—Portraits on Glass—Holmes, No. 289 Broadway, offers to the people a new style of Sun Pictures termed the “Lampratype”[iii]  While Holmes is not using the term Ambrotype technically they are Ambrotypes.

Several week later on November 1 the following advertisement appears. $200,000 have been saved to the people, and the subscriber has made a fortune out of the Original Twenty-Five Cent Daguerreotypes, No. 289 Broadway, and he will now sell the entire Picture Factory to any responsible party and retire from the interesting excitement appertaining to Life in a Daguerreotype Room.  Holmes.

It’s not known if Holmes sold his gallery, the advertisement ran only one time, according to Craig he was listed at 289 Broadway until 1859, in addition his name does appear on the advertisements after this date. The real question is does C. R. Rees have anything to do with the gallery after 1855?  In correspondence with D. A. Serrano author of an article entitled Southern Exposure! The Life and Times of C. R. Rees & Co.  One of Rees’s expressions is the word fogyism which appears several times the last appears on November 24, 1855.  One hundred years ahead of time—Daguerreotypes—one shilling—No. 289 Broadway—the revolutionary community of picture makers, and headquarters of the Artists’ Club, composed of twenty members, who repudiate, fogyism and borrowed thunder.

I had the opportunity to look at five New York City Directories 1856-1857; 1857-1858; 1858-1859; 1859-1860 and 1860-1861. Unlike most of the directories from Massachusetts there was no business directory, but there were a few advertisements.  First looking in the residence listing for Silas A. Holmes  1856 directory list him as a Daguerreotyper at 289 Broadway; 1857 as an Artist, 289 Broadway; 1858 as a Photographer at 289 Broadway; 1859 he is listed as gallery, 691 Broadway, late 289 Broadway; and the 1860 list him as photographs 395 Broadway.  No advertisements were found in the city directories for Holmes in the 1856-1859 directories.  The 1860-1861 directory for The Holmes Gallery Of Photographic Art, 691 Broadway, New York.  Photographs, Daguerreotypes, Ambrotypes, Miniatures in Oil;, Ivorytypes, Cameotypes, &c.  Stereoscopic Portraits of Family Groups taken as they appear in their own Parlors, Gardens, or Parks.  Portraits of Private Residences, Houses, &c. taken to order. G. D. Morse, Proprietor.

The research continues…as new information is found I will update the blog…I am working on the July 1856 issues of the New York Daily Tribune.


Activity Dates:

Silas A. Holmes

Ca. 1847-1859                   289 Broadway, New York, New York.                                                         1859-1860                          691 Broadway, New York, New York.

Charles R. Rees


1850                                    Address Unknown, Cincinnati, Ohio.[ii]

1851                                    Corner Main & Eighth Street, Richmond, Virginia[V]

1852-1854                          289 Broadway, New York, New York.

1854-1855                          385 Broadway, New York, New York.[iv]

1857-1859                          139 Main Street, Richmond, Virginia.

1858                                    39 Sycamore Street, Petersburg, Virginia.

1858                                    Address unknown, Memphis, Tennessee.

1859                                    145 Main Street, Richmond, Virginia.


[i] The reason I often cite John Craig’s Daguerreian Registry is that he like all of us who worked on photographic directories in the 1980 & 90’s we checked, verified and recorded all the various sources that were available to our specific state or area of interest.

[ii] This is an ongoing project and only a few of the New York newspapers (to date) have been reviewed.  Advertisements found for daguerreians in the New York Daily Tribune on average usually only advertise a single time. There are the occasional exceptions Gurney & Fredericks advertise every other day for several week up to a month or so at a time, also Samuel Root’s gallery possible after he left for Iowa in 1855 would advertise the same advertisement for several days and weeks in a row.  Several others Gurney, Tomlinson, Welling and others have advertised two or three times in a row. 

[iii] The Lampratype.  A new and ingenious plan has been devised and successfully carried into practice by Mr. S. A. Holmes, of New York, of rendering Ambrotypes much darker in the dark portions of the picture, and whiter in the white portions. For distinction, he has named them Lampratypes. Information from Ambrotype Manual: A Practical Thesis On The Art Of Taking Positive And Negative Photographs On Paper And Glass, commonly known as photography, in all its branches.

[iv] The Daily Dispatch. (Richmond, Virginia.)  May 5, 1859, Vol. XV, No. 107, P. 2.  Old Rees has had 17 years experience in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Charleston, New Orleans and Cincinnati….

[v] Article Southern Exposure!  The Life and Times of C. R. Rees & Co. by D. A. Serano.

[vi] Information from Craig’s Daguerreian Registry.

Marcus A. & Samuel Root

For the past couple of months I’ve been working on The New York Daily Tribune (April 22, 1842 through December 31, 1859.)  The Tribune is a daily newspaper published six day a week, on April 10th 1850 the paper starts publishing eight pages with six columns, previously it was four pages with six columns.  It’s huge and very time consuming to go through.  But rich with advertisements and articles, some new name and activity dates have been found that have not been previously recorded. Normally I would wait until the newspaper has been completely gone through and checked before writing anything up.  But I wanted to write something to keep up the blog, but there are so many names to choose from Anson; Anthony; Brady; Butler; Clark; Gavit; Gurney; Holmes; Humphrey; Insley; Knapp; Langenheim; Lawrence; Meade Brothers; Morand; Page; Plumbe; Rees; Root; Van Loan; White, or Whitehurst. And these are only some of the names with larger files, there are many more names with smaller files, and I have just finished going through 1853 with six years to go.

The largest file is that of the Root’s, Marcus A. and Samuel. They advertise almost every day, and in many cases more than once, an advertisement rarely run on consecutive days, and only occasionally are they repeated, but for the most part every day is a different one.  There are a number of observations that I thought needed mentioning.  In the Directory of Pennsylvania Photographers1839-1900 by Linda A. Ries and Jay W. Ruby, and in Philadelphia Photographers 1840-1900 By William and Marie Brey there is no listing for Samuel Root. In the Brey directory Samuel is listed in his brothers bio under selected Biographies, but nothing is said about his work in Philadelphia. In Craig’s Daguerreian Registry he states that little is known of Samuel’s early career.  To date I have not read any of the newspapers from Philadelphia so I have nothing to add, except that in an advertisement from the New York Daily Tribune dated July 12, 1848.

Henry Clay In His 71St Year.—Published this day, (June 6, 1848.) by E. Anthony, 205 Broadway, a beautiful steel mezzotint engraving of Henry Clay, drawn and engraved from several Daguerreotypes by H. H. Ritchie (this is probably Alexander Hay Ritchie.)

This likeness was mainly taken from a fine Daguerreotype now in the possession of the subscriber, executed by Messrs. Paige & Beach, Washington. The artists is also indebted to Daguerreotypes taken by Messrs. Root, Simons, and W. & F. Langenheim of Philadelphia, and M. B. Brady, M. M. Lawrence and the Plumbe Gallery of New York, to all of whom the subscriber takes this occasion to express his thanks for the liberality with which they placed their valuable pictures at his disposal….

One can only speculate that “Messrs. Root” means Marcus A. & Samuel. That would mean that Samuel was active in Philadelphia in 1848, and possibly earlier.

The following two advertisements place Marcus in New York City in September 1850. The first announces the opening of his gallery at 363 Broadway.

New York Daily Tribune.  September 26, 1850…M. A. Root’s Daguerreotype Saloons, South west corner of Broadway and Franklin-st.—M. A. Root celebrated for years as a Daguerreotypist in Philadelphia has opened a magnificently furnished suits of rooms in the most fashionable part of the city, (363 Broadway, corner Franklin-st.) where having an admirable sky-light, he flatters himself that he will be able to furnish Daguerreotype Likenesses, equal in finish, accurate and effect, to anything of the kind in the world.  He has [six] medals from the various institutes and fairs of our country for his superior productions.  He invites the public to visit his rooms and examine his Gallery of Likenesses of [the] most distinguished people.

On the same page another advertisement appears and possibly proves the authorship of the Jenny Lind Daguerreotype that has been speculated was taken by Samuel.

Jenny Lind.—Have you seen this famous lady? If not, have you seen the great likeness of her taken yesterday by Root, the renowned Daguerreotypist from Philadelphia, who just opened the most magnificent Daguerreotype Saloons in the country.  Go and see it.  The place is gorgeously fitted up, and Jenny’s likeness is wonderful.

Not until October 23, 1850 in the New York Daily Tribune do we find Samuel’s name mentioned in an advertisement. Between October 23, 1850 to December 8, 1851 most of the time the partnership is identified as M. A. & S. Root, on December 9, 1851 for the only time the firm is identified in the New York Daily Tribune as Root and Co.

It is difficult to determine when the partnership ends in New York. We learn from the Journals of the day that Marcus sold his interest of the New York Gallery by the end of 1851.  John Craig reports that Marcus and Samuel were still listed in the New York City Directories until 1853 this might explain the occasional reference to M.A. & S. Root, and the fact that no first names are use in the advertisements, the firm is referred to as Root’s.  Not until 1854 does Samuel’s name appear in the advertisements as Samuel Root or S. Root.

On October 23, 1850 in the New York Daily Tribune the following advertisement appears.

The Question Settled.—A day or two will settle it. We affirm that M. A. & S. Root make Daguerreotype pictures that cannot be equaled in this country.  Will they get the gold medal at the Fair?  That remains to be seen.  It is a test that will settle the whole difficulty.  Their elegant Saloons are at the southwest corner of Broadway and Franklin-st.

There is no question that Marcus and Samuel Root are both in the top echelon of image makers in the 1850’s. If for no other reason their advertisements tell us so.  Shortly after John A. Whipple of Boston announces the patent of the Crayon Daguerreotype in the Tribune, the Roots purchase the rights for everywhere except New England.  They (Marcus & Samuel) advertise that they are making the Crayon Daguerreotype, they hold the patent and it’s the only place to get it.  Two examples in the New York Daily Tribune when the firm was Marcus and Samuel Root.

On February 19, 1851…New Style Of Art.—Letters Patent have been granted for a new and beautiful style of Miniatures, called “Crayon Daguerreotypes.” The effect is truly wonderful, and recommends itself to all good judges.  Artists and others are invited to call at 363 Broadway, corner of Franklin-st, Root’s Gallery, and examine specimens.Advertisement ran on February 19 & 20, 1851.

And then on February 26, 1851…Crayon Daguerreotypes—Process patented.—this new and exquisite style of art is pronounced by artists and all good judges, “the last great improvement in Daguerreotyping.” Ladies and gentlemen are invited to call and judge for themselves.  This new style can be had only at Root’s Gallery, 363 Broadway, cor. of Franklin-st.                                                                                                                         Advertisement ran on February 26 & 27, 1851.

This type of advertisement continues into 1854. On April 27, 1852….Crayon Pictures.—The Exquisitely delicate Crayon Daguerreotype is taken in full perfection in cloudy weather, by Root, No. 363 Broadway.  By-the-way, we would caution Daguerreian Artists and others against taking these pictures in any other establishment, since Root owns the patent for this region, and will be sure to prosecute all infringements.

June 25, 1852….The best artists pronounce the beautiful Crayon Pictures the most perfect thing ever achieved by the Daguerreotype. It is taken only by Root, No. 363 Broadway, to whom eleven first premiums have been awarded.

May 20, 1853….The magnificent Crayon Daguerreotype, Made only at Root’s Gallery, No. 363 Broadway, is still the delight and admiration of all true lovers of art. Examine it, by all means.  Root’s Rooms, easy of access.

Not once is there a mention of Whipple the inventor of the process, nor do they acknowledge that they purchased the rights from him. Published in the July 1851 issue of the Photographic and Fine Arts Journal….the following appears.  Mr. Root, of New York, has now brought the Crayon Daguerreotype process to such perfection that we cannot express too highly an appreciation of the beautiful specimens he sends from his gallery.  We have always expressed our admiration for this style of picture, and Mr. J. A. Whipple, of Boston, has not, we think, received that credit for the invention which he most richly deserves.  We never saw a more beautiful picture than the one he exhibited to us two years ago, taken in this style, and we never have yet seen it surpassed…

Root through his advertising style has alienated many of the photographic community in New York claiming that they are the best, and when multiple awards were given at the World’s Fair in New York he claims almost every day that he won the highest award at the fair. In fact he was only one of five daguerreotypist who won the Bronze Medal, in addition Charles C. Harrison also won the Bronze Medal for a Camera.  Whipple won the highest award a Silver Medal for his Crystalotypes.  Below is the complete list of awards given as published in the Tribune on January 20, 1854.  The following day the list of Honorable Mention were listed.

The [1853] Exhibition At The Crystal Palace. Official Awards of Juries.

Jury F.  Class 10.  Philosophical Instruments And Their Products….

Silver Medal.

Whipple, John A.  Boston, Mass, U. S., for Crystalotypes a new art.

Bronze Medal.

Butler, Alexander.  [  ?  ]  U. S., for several excellent Daguerreotypes.                            Brady, Mathew B. New-York City, U. S., for uniformly excellent Daguerreotypes.            Harrison, C. C.  New-York City, U. S., for Camera.                                                                  Hesler, Alexander, [Galena, Ill.], U. S., for several beautiful Daguerreotypes,            Lawrence, Martin M. [New-York City], U. S., for excellent Daguerreotypes, particularly     “past, present, future.”                                                                                                                 Root, Samuel.  New-York City, U. S., for fine Daguerreotypes.

Honorable Mention.

Gurney, Jeremiah.  New-York City, U. S., for fine Daguerreotypes.                              Harrison & Hill.  Brooklyn, U. S., for Daguerreotypes.                                                           Long, E.  St. Louis, Mo., U. S., for an exquisite Daguerreotype of a lady.                            Meade Bros.  New-York City, U. S., for Daguerreotypes of “Seven Ages of Man.”            Moissinet, Dobyne & Richardson, New-Orleans, U. S., for Daguerreotypes.                      North, W[illiam]. C. Cleveland, U. S., for Daguerreotypes.                                                  Peters Otis F. sic [Otis T.], New-York City, U. S., for Stereoscopes.                                       Root, M. A., Philadelphia, U. S., for fine Daguerreotypes.                                            Whitehurst, J. H., Baltimore, U. S., for fine Daguerreotypes.

The day the Tribune published the list of award winners January 20th Root placed the following advertisement.  Crystal palace Medal.—The Bronze Medal of the World’s Fair at the New-York Crystal Palace, being the highest honor for Daguerreotypes, was yesterday awarded to Root, of No. 363 Broadway.  Palmam qyi meruit ferat.  This type of advertising continues almost every day.  In fact one advertisement by Root was copied entirely, with Mathew Brady’s name attached.  The next day Root complains.  This is not the first time that Root’s style has caused a rift between the photographic community.  Words have passed between Gurney and also with Lawrence.  I am sure that if Plumbe or Whitehurst were still active in New York they also would have had a disagreement with Root’s claims.

To be continued…..