Tag Archives: New York City

Erastus Steven

1855                303 Broadway, New York, New York.

Erastus Steven of the firm De Guinon & Steven was recorded in two advertisements in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  The first advertisement appeared on June 13, 1855.  A Rare Chance Is Now Offered To An Enterprising person with small capital, to purchase very low, a first class photograph and daguerreotype gallery, now doing a splendid business, and one of the best locations in the city; the parties now interested are going to Europe.  Inquire De Guinon & Steven, 303 Broadway, corner of Duane street.

The second advertisement appeared on June 21, 1855.  A Rare Chance—For Sale, Or A Partner taken.—One of the partners of the photograph and daguerreotype establishment, No. 303 Broadway, is about going to Europe, and a rare chance is offered to a person with small capital, to buy out the establishment, or to join the remaining partner in conducting the business.  A knowledge of the business not requisite, as the remaining party is an old daguerreotypist.  Inquire De Guinon & Steven, 303 Broadway.

Erastus Steven is recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry as Erastus Stever it is unknown which spelling is correct.


c. 1855-1856   Address Unknown, New York, New York.[1]

1857                289 Broadway, New York, New York.

Snodgrass was recorded in one article and five advertisements two in the New York Daily Tribune and three time in the New York Herald.  In the Photographic and fine Arts Journal  (New York, New York) on January 1, 1856.   His name appears in an article entitled the Photographic Galleries of America.  Number One, New York. The author visited 69 Galleries in New York City.  Snodgrass — Some of these specimens may pass as daguerreotypes. The grounds are very much clouded and the picture looks as though pasted on the plate. Improve!  Improve!

The first advertisement appears on June 23, 1857 in the New York Daily Tribune (New York, New York).  Twelve-Cent Ambrotypes.—3,000 taken daily by the new firm of Snodgrass & Co.  Headquarters of Portraits of the People, on the progressive system and democratic principles—greater good to the mass.  No. 289 Broadway.

The second advertisement appears on June 23, 1857 in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  12 Cent Ambrotypes, in Frames, Perfect and natural as life.  3,000 taken daily by the new firm of Snodgrass & Co., 289 Broadway.

The third advertisement appears on June 24, 1857 in the New York Daily Tribune (New York, New York).  12-Cent Ambrotype Portraits in natural colors to Life.  3,000 taken daily by the new firm of Snodgrass & Co.  Established Pictures for the people on the cheapest system of art, employing 25 artists, at No. 289 Broadway.

The fourth advertisement appears on June 24, 1857 in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  12 Cent Ambrotypes Portraits, in Frames and natural colors, to the life.  3,000 daily,  by Snodgrass & Co.  New broom sweeps clean.  289 Broadway.

The fifth advertisement appears on June 26, 1857 in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  Twelve Cent Ambrotypes Portraits, by 10 artists in whiskers, at the new gallery of Snodgrass & Co.  Old wine in new bottles.  289 Broadway.

Snodgrass is recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian registry as possibly being active in 1855-1856 but is recorded here because of the first-hand account of the work and advertisements found in 1857.  Interesting the 289 Broadway address is the same address as Silas A. Holmes and some of the terminology in the advertisements are the same that he uses.  Holmes was also included in the same article, and it is unknown if they were associated together in anyway.

[1] Not all first names or complete addresses were recorded in article Craig’s Daguerreian Registry was used to assist in identification when possible first name and address were added. 

William H. Smith

1845-1846       4 Maiden Lane, New York, New York.[1]

1847                4 Maiden Lane, New York, New York.

William H. Smith is recorded in four advertisements in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  The first advertisement appeared on January 29, 1847.  Daguerreotype Plates.—Small quarter and large sizes, No. 40 and 60.  For sale by Wm. H. Smith & Co.  No. 4 Maiden Lane.  

The second advertisement ran from May 20 to 27, 1847.  Daguerreotype Plates—Just received, a large assortment of Daguerreotype plates, full, quarter and small size; for sale by Wm. H. Smith & Co., 4 Maiden lane.                         

The third advertisement appeared on April 6, 1847.  Daguerreotype Plates.  Just Received—Just received, a large assortment of Daguerreotype plates, small, quarter, half and full size.                   

For sale by Wm. H. Smith & Co., 4 Maiden Lane                                                    

The fourth advertisement ran from April 27 to 29, 1847.  Daguerreotype Plates.—Wm. H. Smith & Co., No. 4 Maiden Lane, have now on hand Daguerreotype plates of the best quality, from the most celebrated makers at Paris, which they offer as follows:—

3000 Full Size, No. 40, at………..$10.00 per dozen

3000 half    “      “    40, at………..$5.00     “       “

6000 quarter       “    40, at………..$2.55     “       “

18,500 medium   “   40, at…………$1.60     “       “

Terms—Six months for bills over $100.  Cash discount of 5 per cent from all sums less than that amount.                                                                                                                         


W. H. Smith is recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry as being active in 1845-1846.

[1] Information from Craig’s Daguerreian Registry

C. Wells Simons

1842                155 Broadway, New York, New York.

C. Wells Simons appeared in one advertisement in The New York Herald (New York, New York) on September 15, 1842.  For Sale—Improved Daguerreotype Apparatus, with full instructions, for sale low—Persons, who in consequence of the depressed times have been thrown out of employment, may, with a very limited capital, enter into this elegant profitable business with a certainty of success.—There are many towns, even in this State, that have not yet been visited by any operators; and at the South and West there is a first rate field open for those wishing to travel.

A full knowledge of the Art can be obtained in a few days, by applying to C. Wells Simons, 155 Broadway, N. Y.

N. B.—Persons in the country can be furnished with the Apparatus, and written instructions that will enable them to operate successfully.  C. Wells Simon.         

C. Wells Simons is not recorded in other photographic directories.  C. Wells Simons was not listed in the 1841-1842 or the 1842-1843 New York City directories.  It is unknown if Simons was an amateur or professional daguerreotypist or a retailer of daguerrean equipment.

Stephen Sherwood

Stephen Sherwood was recorded in one advertisement that ran in The New York Herald (New York, New York) on April 16, 1856.  Daguerreotypes, Large size for Fifty Cents.—The cheapest place in the city to get good Pictures is at Sherwood’s.  No. 109 Eighth avenue, between Fifteenth and Sixteenth streets.  N. B.—Have been operator at Welling’s in Bleecker street, for the last five years.

Stephen Sherwood is recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry with conflicting addresses between 1851-1856 while an operator for Peter Welling.

James E. Shaw

1851                359 Broadway, New York, New York.

James E. Shaw was recorded in one announcement that appeared on December 4, 1851 in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  Indecent Assault Upon A Little Girl—On Monday last James E. Shaw, a member of the theatrical profession, on a warrant issued by Justice Lothrop, wherein he stands charged with an indecent assault on a little girl only nine years of age.  Fanny Armstrong, residing with her parents.  The accused was brought before the magistrate, through his counsel—a hearing was demanded.  The prosecution took the evidence of the child Fanny, who stated that she visited Shaw’s rooms No. 359 Broadway. (where it seems, he keeps a daguerreotype gallery,) about two months ago, in company with Elizabeth Akin , a small girl of about twelve years of age, residing with her parents.  Fanny said that Elizabeth invited her to go with her to Mr. Shaw’s, to have her likeness taken, and they both went, without telling their mother where they were going.  She says Shaw took them into a private room, and took Fanny on his knees, at which time the indecent assault is alleged to have been perpetrated, the particulars of which are not suitable for publication.  The other witness Elizabeth Akin, also testified to very improper conduct exhibited by Shaw towards her, as well as towards the child Fanny.  Several medical gentlemen were examined, who differed in opinion as to the disease on the child.  The evidence was concluded yesterday, and the magistrate will give his decision on Friday.

James E. Shaw is not recorded in other photographic directories.

Mrs. Harriet Shankland

1844-1845       149 Broadway, corner Liberty Street, Lafayette Bazaar, New York, New York…. 1845-1846       151 Broadway, New York, New York………………………………………………. 1845                235 Broadway, New York, New York……………………………………………..

Mrs. Harriet Shankland was recorded five advertisements in The New York Herald and one advertisement in The Evening Post (New York, New York.)  The first advertisement ran from December 20, 1844 to January 13, 1845.  Only One Dollar Including Case, or Frame.  Lafayette Bazaar, 149 Broadway, corner of Liberty.  Christmas And New Year Daguerreotype Portraits. 

Mrs. H. Shankland, Daguerrian Artist, respectfully informs the ladies and gentlemen that she will take the best Daguerreotype, including a neat case or frame, for one dollar, as good as any.

3000 customers can certify what she advances.                                                        

The second advertisement ran from January 28 to March 12, 1845.  Cheap Daguerreotype Portraits.  Mrs. H. Shankland, Daguerreotype Artist, having taken since two years more than 10,000 portraits, and being well known for taking the best style of portraits, respectfully informs her friends and customers and the public, that she gives a beautiful Daguerreotype likeness, including a fine morocco case, or a frame, for only one dollar.  Being always well patronized, and her customers increasing every day, she has, for their convenience, enlarged her establishment, by two Daguerreotype rooms, to the Lafayette Bazaar, 149 Broadway, and by a branch of her establishment, 235 Broadway, third story, front room, No. 1, opposite the Park Fountain Portraits taken from 8 in the morning to 5 in the evening, any weather, cloudy or steamy.  Remember, only one dollar, (best style) including case or frame.  

The third advertisement ran from March 17 to April 27, 1845.  Lafayette Bazaar, 149 and 151 Broadway, corner of Liberty st.  This Establishment, founded the 1st of December, 1843, as a public store for the sale of every description of Staple and Fancy Goods, will be enlarged the 1st of May next.  The subscriber having rented the upper part of the building, 151 Broadway, will put in complete repair and fit up in a magnificent manner, two large galleries, where the traders, manufacturers and importers, will be able to obtain at a cheap rent, a fine and convenient store; and the ladies and gentlemen a splendid place of resort and a public and fashionable promenade.

Mrs. H. Shankland, Daguerrian Artist, has already rented the front part of the two galleries as a Daguerreotype Saloon, where she will continue as before, to give the most perfect likeness for One Dollar, including the best kind of Morocco Case or Frame.

Several Counters to let, with glass cases—enquire in the Bazaar.     T. A. Artault.      

The fourth advertisement ran from March 17 to April 27, 1845.  Ladies’ And Families” Daguerreotype Institute, Mrs. H. Shankland, Daguerrian Artist.  Daguerreotype Portraits, including the best style of Morocco Case or Frame, for One Dollar.  Apply at the Lafayette Bazaar, 149 Broadway, or 235 Broadway, Third Story, Front Room, No. 1—opposite the Park Fountain.                                                                                      

The fifth advertisement ran from May 10 to June 17, 1845.  Lafayette Bazaar, 149 and 151 Broadway, cor. of Liberty street, New York.  The cheapest and Most Attractive Store of the City.  For the convenience of the buyers, $10,000 worth of Fancy Goods, Toys, Perfumery, Cutlery, Jewelry and other varieties of goods, are displayed on the counters, and sold On An Entirely New Plan, At the following prices:—

Counter No. 1……….12½ cents each article.

Counter No. 2………..25……do….do….do.

Counter No. 3………..50……do….do….do.

Counter No. 4………..75……do….do….do.

Counter No. 5…………$1.00..do….do….do.

All the goods are warranted to be genuine; the prices are fifty cent below the market prices, and by this new plan you can buy the goods at retail prices a great deal cheaper than at auction.

You will also find in the Bazaar, the most complete assortment of Sugar Plumbs and Candies, from 25 cents to $3 a pound; Jujube Paste, Chocolate, &c.

Two large Saloons have been fitted up in a magnificent style, as Ice Cream Saloons.  A competent person, from a Philadelphia establishment, has been engaged to take the entire management of the Ice Cream Department, and ladies and gentlemen will obtain at the Lafayette Bazaar, a real Ice Cream, Philadelphia Style.

Daguerreotype Portraits.  Mrs. H. Shankland, Daguerrian Artist, has fixed the front part of the two galleries of the Bazaar, as daguerreotype Saloons, where she will continue, to take the most perfect Likenesses For One Dollar, including a neat Morocco Case or Frame.

For further particulars apply to F. A, Artault, At the Lafayette Bazaar.                       

The sixth advertisement ran on December 22, 1846 in The Evening Post (New York, New York). 

The Lafayette Bazaar, 149 and 151 Broadway—This would be a great place for making a selection for presents.  There is a couple of darkies in regimentals at the door, who will hand you catalogues of the articles in the establishment, consisting of toys, fancy boxes, cutlery, Jewelry, perfumery of every kind, with other numerous varieties of goods, and the proprietor states that he will sell fifty per cent lower than any other establishment, and if you cannot obtain any goods to suit, there is a fair lady who will give you a perfect Daguerreotype likeness for one dollar.

Mrs. Harriet Shankland was recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry as being active in1846.

Charles A. Seely

1855                324 Broadway, New York, New York.

1856                387 Broadway, New York, New York.

1856-1857       94 Duane Street, New York, New York.

1857-1859       424 Broadway, New York, New York.

Charles A. Seely was recorded in eighteen advertisements in The New York Herald (New York, New York).  The first advertisement appeared on August 29, 1855.  Daguerrean Gallery For Sale—At A Lower price and with a cheaper rent than any in the city, or the apparatus will be sold low by itself, or a partner, with $300, will be taken, by an artist in photography, ambrotypes, &c.; also, a small lathe for sale cheap.  Inquire of C. A. Seely, 324 Broadway.

The second advertisement appeared on January 3, 1856.  For Sale At A Bargain—The Apparatus Of the original stereoscopic daguerrean gallery of New York, including two superior half size Harrison cameras, with every thing peculiar to the business, with instructions, for plate and glass pictures, if desired.  Inquire of C. A. Seely, 324 Broadway.

The third advertisement appeared on March 17, 1856. Daguerreotypes, in Cases, 25 Cents; Ambrotypes extra large size 50 Cents, cases included. Charles A. Seely, photographic chemist, is connected with this establishment from this date. Quinby & Co., Factory 387 Broadway.

The fourth advertisement appeared on November 29, 1856. $700.–One Of The Oldest Established Daguerreotype gallery in the busiest parts of the city, well furnished and stocked with large size apparatus, and now doing a good business; the rent is very low. Apply to Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemist, &c., 94 Duane street.

The fifth advertisement appeared on May 5, 1857.  Seely & Garbanati, Photographic Chemicals, &c., have removed to 424 Broadway.  Amateurs supplies in all their wants.

The sixth ad appeared on September 19, 1857.  Ambrotype Gallery For Sale—At A Bargain. In a good location for business, will be sold at a sacrifice, as the present owner has other business.  Apply immediately to Seely & Garbinatti, photographic chemicals, 424 Broadway.

The seventh ad appeared on December 11, 1857.  $200—For Sale, An Old Established Ambrotype and Photographic Gallery, Apply to Seely & Garbanati, 424 Broadway.

The eighth ad appeared on January 22, 1858.  Daguerrean Gallery.—For Sale, The Lease of an old established daguerrean gallery, with instruments, furniture, and everything necessary for all branches of the business.  Inquire of Seely & Garbanati, Photographic Chemists, 424 Broadway.

The ninth ad appeared on March 24, 1858.  Ambrotype Gallery For Sale—Price $70 cash.  The reason for selling is the owner is going into another business.  Apply to Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemist, 424 Broadway.

The tenth ad appeared on April 7, 1858.  Ambrotype And Photograph Gallery In Broadway.—Authenticated profits upwards of $75 per week.  Price $1,500; $1,000 down.  The above is well furnished and stocked, and is a rare bargain.  Apply to Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemists, 424 Broadway.  An lease on the gallery.

The eleventh ad appearedonMay 22, 1858.  Ambrotype, Photograph And Daguerreotype Gallery.—For sale, the lease, stock and fixtures, and everything pertaining to the art, now doing a good business.  Apply to Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemists, 424 Broadway.

The twelfth adappeared onJune 2, 1858.  For Sale Cheap—A Broadway Daguerrean establishment, thoroughly fitted and furnished, and replete with every accessory for the art. The most satisfactory reason giving for selling.  Apply to Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemist, 424 Broadway.

The thirteenth ad appearedonAugust 17, 1858.  Ambrotypes For Sale—A Well Fitted Up gallery on Broadway, doing a good business, the owners  being engaged in another establishment, will dispose of the above at the lowest price of $175.  Inquire of Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemists, 424 Broadway.

The fourteenth advertisement appeared on August 25, 1858.  Ambrotypes.—For Sale A Well Furnished ambrotype gallery on Broadway, doing an excellent business; the owner being engaged in another business, will sell the gallery for the low price of $175.  Inquire of Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemist, 424 Broadway, New York.

The fifteenth advertisement appeared on April 27, 1859.  To Photographists.—Wanted To Purchase, An interest in, or whole of a first class photographic gallery on Broadway, not above Union square.  Inquire of Seely & Garbanati, 424 Broadway.

The sixteenth advertisement appeared on May 25, 1859.  $1,000 To $50,000—A Valuable Patent, In demand everywhere, for sale by Seely & Garbanati, Photographic Chemists, 424 Broadway.

The seventeenth advertisement appeared on June 29.  Daguerreotypes, Ambrotypes, Photographs, &c. copied, enlarged and colored in all styles of the art at moderate prices, by Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemists and publishers, 424 Broadway, Stereoscopic pictures wholesale.

The eighteenth ad appeared on September 5, 1859.  Photographic Engraving.—Patent Rights for sale, engraving done at moderate rates, by Seely & Garbanati, photographic chemists, 424 Broadway.  A complete set of apparatus, chemicals, &c., for taking pictures on glass and paper, for $30.  The American Journal of Photography, semi-monthly, $1.50 per annum; The Ambrotype, price 25 cents; Hardwick’s Photographic Chemistry, 50 cents; Sir David Brewster on the Stereoscope, $1, will soon be out.

Charles A. Seely, Henry Garbanati and Charles J. Quinby are all recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry.  Seely was recorded in Craig’s as being active in New York between 1857-1860.  It appears that he was active in New York City before the advertisement on August 29, 1855. The partnership of Seely & Garbanati began in 1856 at 94 Duane street, before moving to 424 Broadway.  The other interesting item from all the advertisements is that they were unable to sell the gallery and that they were all over the place with the sale price.  It is also possible that their main focus was the manufacturing of photographic chemicals and not the image side of the business.

D. W. Seager

1839                In Chilton’s, Broadway, New York, New York.       

D. W. Seager was recorded in four announcements, the first three are from the Morning Herald (New York, New York) the fourth is from The Evening Post (New York, New York) and one letter.  The first announcement appeared on September 30, 1839.  We saw, the other day, in Chilton’s in Broadway, a very curious specimen of the new mode, recently invented by Daguerre in Paris of taking on copper the exact resemblance of scenes and living objects, through the medium of the sun’s ray’s reflected in a camera obscura.  The scene embraces a part of St. Paul’s church, and the surrounding shrubbery and houses…It seems that for an annuity of $1200 a year, paid by the French Government, the inventor, in Paris, agreed to make public the process of taking such miniature pictures. Mr. Segur, of this city, on this description, set to work his powers, and, about three days ago, succeeded in making the experiment…

The second announcement appeared on October 3, 1839.  The Daguerreotype.—A lecture will be given by Mr. Seager, at the Stuyvesant Institute, on Sunday evening, the 5th inst. At half past seven o’clock, upon the Daguerreotype, or the art of imprinting, in a few minutes, by the mode of Mr. Daguerre, the beautiful images of landscapes, Architecture, Interiors, &c. formed in the Camera Obscura.  These drawings will be found so perfect that distant houses, appearing not larger than a pin’s head, may be magnified to discover doors, windows, &c.—The process is rapid and simple, but requiring delicacy and a certain adherence to rules which will be explicitly laid down, as well as the particular miniature to be observed to ensure a certainty of success.  The process cannot be carried to ultimate completion by candlelight, but every stage of the operation will be exhibited to familiarize others with the mode.

The following scientific gentlemen have given permission to be referred to as being familiar with the process and its extraordinary results:

President Duer, Columbia College; Professor Morse; James R. Chilton, Esq.; Jno L. Stephens, Esq.[1]

Tickets, 50 Cents, may be had of Dr. Chilton. 261 Broadway; at the Messrs. Carvill’s, at the Booksellers’, and at the Stuyvesant Institute.—Broadway.                                   

Advertisement ran from October 3 to 5, 1839.          

The letter is from the collection of the George Eastman House & Museum.  Printed on the outside of the envelope:  Nov. 7. 1839./ DW Seager/Daguerreotype painting.  To the manager of the American Institute.

Nov. 7 1839


Allow me to present to the American Institute a specimen of the Daguerreotype which I produced in the month of September and exhibited at your last fair.  My first result was on the 16th Septr last and through nearly Eight weeks have elapsed I have seen nothing, with which to compare results.  This little specimen will serve to mark the progress of the art, the process of which is now generally known, but which simply consist in cleansing the silvered surface of a plate of copper with diluted nitric acid, subjecting it to the vapor of iodine for a few seconds and by placing it in a camera obscura to receive the impression of light from any object desired.  The drawing is produced by the action of light upon the thin film of ioduretted [?] silver & when the plate is subjected to the vapor of mercury at a temperature of 167 Fahrenheit the vapor is attracted and coheres to those parts most influenced by light.

Some of my more recent results now in the possession of Dr. Chilton I am told by those who have seen Daguerres drawings, are equal to some of his.  The truth of these drawings amounts almost to a reflection of the object in a mirror.  I have obtained good results at nine feet distance & Thus a complex and intricate piece of machinery, requiring much time a labor of an expert draughtsman to produce a drawing correct in all its measurements may in a few moments be drawn with such mathematical precision and exactness, that one part being measured or known would be the scale for the whole, and a moderate time would suffice for many drawings under different point of view, or relative position of parts.

I am [Gentlemen]

Your obedient Servt

DW Seager

150 Greenwich Street.

The third announcement appeared on January 21, 1840.  What is all this bluster and rhodomontade about, between Gouraud and Seager, respecting the Daguerreotype?  It looks a little like Twedledum and Twedledee.

The fourth announcement appeared on January 23, 1840. A newspaper controversy has taken place between Mr. Gouraud, who brought over the Daguerreotype from France, and a Mr. Seager, a pupil of his, who has set up for himself, and attacked Mr. Gouraud with great ferocity in certain advertisements.  That Mr. Gouraud is the person he represents himself to be—that he is a pupil of Daguerre, the inventor—and that he brings over to this country the latest improvement in the Daguerreotype—there can be no doubt; and the attempt to supplant him strikes us as unfair and unjust.  The charge that Mr. Gouraud has passed under a feigned name, is not true, as we know from having seen his passport made out by the French Police for this country.

D. W. Seager is known and recorded in a number of histories and in Craig’s Daguerreian Register but was added because he is an important early practitioner and may shed light into the controversy/disagreement between Morse and Gouraud.

[1] James R. Chilton (1810-1863); William Alexander Duer (1780-1858); Samuel Finley Breeze Morse (1791-1872); John Lloyd Stephens (1805-1852).

A. Schuster

1853                494 Broadway, New York, New York.

A. Schuster was recorded in one advertisement on December 4, 1853 in The New York Herald  (New York, New York).  Portraits In Pastel And Miniature, After nature, and daguerreotypes executed, and perfect resemblances warranted, by A. Schuster, Portrait Painter, 494 Broadway, Specimens ready for show at his studio.

A. Schuster is not recorded in other photographic directories.  Arnauld Schuster or Shuster is listed in The New-York Historical Society’s Dictionary of Artist In America 1584-1860.  Portrait painter at NYC in 1852, formerly a student at the Munich Academy.