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  The research archive of Gary W. Ewer regarding the history of the daguerreotype

On this day (March 4) in the year 1841, the following news item appeared in the "Salem Register" (Salem, Mass.; Vol. 41, No. 18): ----------------------------------------------------------------- What we may expect for the Daguerreotype, is fully shown by the physolophic Arago:--"To copy the millions and millions of hieroglyphics which entirely cover, to the very exterior, the very great monuments at Thebes, Memphis, Carnac, &c., would require scores of years, and legions of artists. With the Daguerreotype, a single man would suffice to bring to a happy conclusion this vast labor. Arm the Egyptian Institute with two or three of Daguerre's instruments, and on several of the large engravings in that celebrated work, the fruit of our immortal expedition, vast assemblages of real hieroglyphics would replace fictitious or purely conventional characters. At the same time, these designs shall incomparably surpass, in fidelity, in truth of local color, the works of the ablest artists. Again, these photographic delineations, having been subjected, during their formation to the rules of geometry, shall enable us, with the aid of a few simple data, to ascertain the exact dimensions of the most elevated parts, and of the most inaccessible edifices. ----------------------------------------------------------------- (03-04-96)

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