Louis Daguerre: Daguerreotype

Louis Daguerre

Louis Daguerre (1789 - 1851), in collaboration with Nicephore Niepce, invented the first practical photographic process in 1837 which was widely used in portraiture until the mid 1850s.

A brass plate coated with silver was sensitized by exposure to iodine vapor and exposed to light in a camera for several minutes.

A weak positive image produced by mercury vapor was fixed with a solution of salt.

In 1839 the French government purchased Daguerre's French patent and offered the daguerreotype as "a gift free to the world".

Daguerre, however, did maintain control of the patent throughout the rest of the world.

Louis Daguerre Louis Daguerre

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