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Daguerreotypes – True Treasures!

the front of the photo case showing the leather embossing

PHOTO 1: the front of the photo case showing the leather embossing on the smaller daguerreotype

side of the case showing the tiny little latches on the smaller daugerreotype photo case

side of the case showing the tiny little latches

William Beavis Randell and his wife Mary Ann (nee Bear) may have been taken in England when they visited with their daughter Elizabeth Beavis Randell in 1854/55

inside of the case the left side is velvet, with the right side being the photo. If looked at straight on, it looks just like a mirror and you can barely see an image. So you have to hold it at just the right angle.

this is the best I could get

trying to get a better angle so you can actually see the photo

this is the best I could get

this is the best I could get

PHOTO 2: the front of the second Randell daguerreotype photo, showing the embossing on the leather

PHOTO 2: the front of the second Randell daguerreotype photo, showing the embossing on the leather

the side of the case showing the latches

the side of the case showing the latches

the open case, with William Richard Randell (the riverboat captain), with his wife Elizabeth, second son William Beavis Randell, and his sister-in-law Sarah Nickels. I can't believe there's so much colour in the photo, as well as gold on the frame, and the condition of the red embossed velvet is amazing!

the open case, with William Richard Randell (the riverboat captain), with his wife Elizabeth, second son William Beavis Randell, and his sister-in-law Sarah Nickels. I can’t believe there’s so much colour in the photo, as well as gold on the frame, and the condition of the red embossed velvet is amazing!

close up of the Randell daguerreotype photo

close up of the Randell daguerreotype photo

the photo with the caption that was found in it (thankfully)

the photo with the caption that was found in it (thankfully)

DESCRIPTION: two daguerreutype photos that show members of the Randell family who were originally from Devon, England but emigrated to Gumeracha, South Australia in 1837
DATE: first photo 1854/55, the second photo 1856/57
CURRENT OWNER OF THE ITEMS: Alan Phillips
STORY/ABOUT: Daguerreotype photos are true treasures. Firstly they were expensive, so not just everyone went and had their photos taken, and secondly they were one of the really early forms of photography so many have not survived. And to give just a very brief history of them …

The name “daguerreotype” correctly refers only to one very distinctive image type and medium, produced by a specific photographic process that was in wide use only from the early 1840s to the late 1850s. By the early 1860s, later processes which were less costly and produced more easily viewed images with shorter exposure times had almost entirely replaced it.

PHOTO 1: size about 12cm in height. The first photo is of William Beavis Randell and his wife Mary Ann (nee Bear) and daughter Elizabeth and may have been taken when they travelled to England in 1854/55. Sadly Elizabeth died age 15 from smallpox on the return voyage from England, and was buried at sea in 1855.

PHOTO 2: size about 20cm in height. The second photo is of William Richard Randell with his wife Elizabeth Ann (nee Nickels), and second child William Beavis Randell what was born in 1856, and his wife’s sister  Sarah Ann Nickels who married William’s brother, Francis Henry Randell. As the photo says the child was William’s second child, he was born in 1856. So assuming the child it is about a year old in the photo it was probably taken around 1857 as their next child was born in 1858.

 

 

 

 

6 Responses to “Daguerreotypes – True Treasures!”

  1. Deb Miller says:

    Beautiful Treasures!

    • Alona Tester says:

      Thank you Deb. Yes, we’re very lucky to not just have them, but actually know who they are. There’s one other daguerreotype photo that my dad has, but unfortunately we don’t know who it is 🙁

  2. Sharon says:

    What a wonderful record of your heritage to have.

    I have read about daguerreotypes but never seen one.

    Very impressive. Just a bit envious 🙂

    • Alona Tester says:

      Yes, thank you Sharon. They are a treasure, so much so that I actually photographed these ones at my parents place, rather than borrowing them to photograph at my place, as I didn’t want to risk any damage.

  3. What a treasure! Now I see what is meant by cased photos.
    I’d say that child was older than one, though. Two, I could believe.

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