Tag Archives: William H. DeShong

G. M. Thomas

1846                Rooms at the Banner Office, Louisiana, Missouri.

1858                181 Main Street, opposite the Worsham House, Memphis, Tennessee.

G. M. Thomas was recorded in one advertisement in Democratic Banner (Bowling Green, Pike County, Missouri), and mentioned in and additional five advertisements and six announcements in the Memphis Daily Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee) while working for William H. DeShong.  The first advertisement ran from July 25 to August 17, 1846 in Democratic Banner.  Daguerreotype.  G. M. Thomas would respectfully inform the citizens of Louisiana and vicinity, that he has taken rooms at the above place and will remain in town but a few Days.

Daguerreotype Miniatures taken in the most perfect style, plain or colored; and perfect satisfaction warranted to all.  The public are respectfully invited to call and examine specimens.

Rooms at the Banner Office.

The following five advertisements and six announcements appeared in the Memphis Daily Appeal.  The first advertisement ran from July 14 to August3, 1858.  DeShong’s Pictures Still all the Rage.  Persons wishing the best style should not fail to give him a call.  He is now assisted by Mr. G. M. Thomas, who is acknowledged to be one of the best artists in the States.

Remember that DeShong has the exclusive right of Memphis for the Melainotype Patent.

His Gallery is 181 Main street, opposite the Worsham House.                                 

The second advertisement ran on November 4 to 6, 1858.  Premium Pictures.—People will inquire no longer where to get pictures, when they learn that Thomas, at DeShong’s Gallery, 180 Main street, opposite the Worsham House is Making Malameotypes (on iron plates) as cheap, if not cheaper, than those worthless glass pictures made elsewhere.  Recollect—first premium awarded to Thomas for the best pictures at every fair where exhibited.

The third advertisement ran on November 4 & 5, 1858.  We are informed through the press that a great blessing has been conferred on this community by the introduction of a cheap Gallery.  we doubt that the people of Memphis will consider it a greater blessing when they learn that Thomas, at DeShong’s, is making pictures as cheap, if not cheaper, and warranted fifty per cent better, or no pay required.

The first announcement appeared on November 9, 1858.  To The Citizens of Memphis.—A certain humbug establishment in this city say they have eight premiums awarded them—have sixteen years experience.  They wish to know what more can be said in their favor.  Thomas, at DeShong’s will state for their favor, that he has a little boy under his charge, not thirteen years old, has not had sixteen weeks’ experience (not years), who will bet his own money —$50—he can beat them making pictures.

Thomas bets two to one on the boy.

Thomas bets $100 they never got eight premiums—not even one; bets twenty to one they will never get one in Memphis.

First premium to Thomas throughout the South and West.  Got the fixings as proof.

Thomas, at DeShong’s, is working cheaper, and warranted 100 per cent. Better, or no pay required.

Thomas does not wish to boast or humbug.  The above is to let the people know where the best pictures in the world are made.

Thomas will stand up to all he says.  Call and see if I am not right.  Will make your pictures for nothing if you don’t think so.

The fourth advertisement ran on November 10 & 11, 1858.  Memphis Against The World.—Thomas, at DeShong’s, will compare malaneotypes and ambrotypes, for superiority, with any body in the world, for $500—more or less.  The pictures are his own productions, and mostly citizens of Memphis.  Call and see them.  They cost less than elsewhere.

Let the people of Memphis recollect that Thomas will make 50 per cent. Better pictures than the great humbug establishment, or no pay required.  I will do what I say.  Rooms 180 Main street.

The second announcement appeared on November 12, 1858.  Premium Pictures.—Let the people recollect where they are made.  Thomas had no opposition at Fall Fairs, never expected any—sufficient evidence of their superiority over all others, they are not brought from the North.  Warranted 100 per cent. Better than at the great Humbug Depot, or no pay required—all at DeShong’s, 180 Main street.

The third announcement appeared on November 13, 1858.  Premium Pictures.—Thomas, at DeShong’s, is making Pictures as cheap as elsewhere and warranted 5 per cent. Better or no pay required.  First premium awarded to Thomas at every State Fair, South and West, were exhibited.

The fifth announcement ran on November 18 & 19, 1858.  One hundred persons at least, collected at DeShong’s yesterday, disgusted with their steam portraits made on green window glass—“serves them right,” coming to their senses at last.  First premium awarded to Thomas, at DeShong’s, throughout the South and West; one hundred present better or no pay required and cheaper than elsewhere.

The fourth announcement appeared on November 20, 1858.  The reason everybody are now getting pictures at DeShong’s, is they say Thomas, took the first premium everywhere, without even any opposition.  No one has the presumption to compare pictures when he is in the field—sufficient evidence of their great superiority over all others.  AS cheap as elsewhere.  Warranted 100 per cent. Better; or no pay required.

The fifth announcement appeared on November 25, 1858.  Premium Pictures.—Let the people recollect that Thomas, at DeShong’s, has been awarded first Premiums throughout the South and West for the finest pictures.  Warrants them 50 per cent. Better and as cheap as elsewhere, or no pay required.

Everybody says that Thomas’ pictures, at DeShong’s, are the finest they have ever seen in any part of the world.  They are mostly of citizens of Memphis.

The sixth announcement appeared on November 3, 1858.  Premium Pictures.—Everybody that has visited the northern cities, and traveled throughout Europe, pronounce Thomas’ Ambrotypes and melaneotypes, (at DeShong’s Gallery,) the finest specimens of the art they have ever seen, in any art of the world.  They cost no more than elsewhere, and are warranted 100 per cent finer, or no pay required.  First Premium awarded to Thomas, at every Fair South and West.

G. M. Thomas was recorded in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry as being active in 1851 in Mobile, Alabama apparently in partnership with William H. DeShong and again in 1859 in Memphis, Tennessee.  According to the 1858 advertisements and announcements it appears that Thomas worked for DeShong.  This might have changed in 1859 but to date no newspapers have been consulted in Memphis in 1859.

William H. Deehong (DeShong)

1859                Whitehall Street, Atlanta, Georgia.[1]

William H. Deehong  (DeShong) was recorded in an announcement on November 19, 1859 in The Daily Exchange (Baltimore, Maryland).  Atlanta, Nov. 17.—A fire broke out here last night at 11 o’clock and burnt until 2 o’clock this morning, consuming much valuable property.  It originated in a drug store, near Shackelford’s auction room, and burnt to the Fulton Bank.  The Intelligencer newspaper office is in ruins, and two of the next blocks up Whitehall Street.  The flames then spread from Markum corner up Alabama street to Down’s grocery, and thence up Whitehall street to Holbrook’s hat store.  The principal property destroyed was…Deehong’s daguerreotype gallery…

The same announcement also ran in The Daily Dispatch (Richmond, Virginia).  William H. DeShong is recorded in in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry and Early Georgia Photographers, 1841–1861: a Biographical Checklist, Compiled by E. Lee Eltzroth.

[1] Address from Early Georgia Photographers, 1841–1861: a Biographical Checklist, Compiled by E. Lee Eltzroth


Bingham & DeShong

The partnership of Bingham & DeShong has previously not been recorded in photographic directories.  Both Benjamin Bingham and William H. DeShong have appeared in Craig’s Daguerreian Registry.  They first appear in an advertisement that appeared in the Memphis Daily Appeal (Memphis, Tennessee) under the heading Business Notices on December 12, 1858 and ran till January 15, 1859.  We are often asked by strangers where the best pictures are to be had?  We would here through the press answer all.  We say, go to DeShong’s Gallery, 118 Main Street.  Mr. DeShong is now assisted by Mr. Bingham, whose pictures stand unrivalled, Call and see for yourselves, and be convinced.

On January 18, 1859 in the Memphis Daily Appeal under the heading Business Notices two notices appear.  Beautiful Pictures.—Messrs. Bingham & DeShong, 181 Main street, take the melainotype pictures on the iron plate, which will neither break or fade.  They are undoubtedly the best and prettiest pictures made.

Children’s Picture’s.—parents wishing pictures of their children can get them fac simile of Messrs. Bingham & DeShong, at the premium gallery, opposite the Worsham House.  Every attention will be paid to the cases of children, and their restlessness will be met with cheerful patience.

On March 27, 1859 the third Business Notice in the Memphis Daily Appeal appears.    Premium Gallery.—Bingham & DeShong Main street, opposite the Worsham House, continue to make those celebrated Melainotypes, known to be the very best pictures now made.  Recollect premium gallery. 180 Main street.  It is unknown if they changed address, if they are newspaper typos, or a renumbering of street addresses, which address is correct 118, 181 or 180 Main Street?