First American Daguerreotype - Robert Cornelius Self-Portrait
First American Daguerreotype
By Mary Bellis
Robert Cornelius's self-portrait is one of the first.
Robert Cornelius Self-Portrait Approximate quarter-plate daguerreotype, 1839
After several years of experimentation, Louis Jacques Mande Daguerre developed a more convenient and effective method of photography, naming it after himself - the daguerreotype. In 1839, he and Niépce's son sold the rights for the daguerreotype to the French government and published a booklet describing the process. He was able to reduce the exposure time to less than 30 minutes and keep the image from disappearing… ushering in the age of modern photography.