go to HOME


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

On this day (June 18) in the year 1853, the following two items appeared in the Illustrated News (New York): ---------------------------------------------------------------------- EXCITING INCIDENT. Among the Rocky Mountains, on one occasion, while J. Wesley Jones, Esq., with a few of his artist companions, were stopping in the rear of their main company for the purpose of daguerreotyping for his pantascope some remarkably strange rocks, a war party of Indians suddenly sprang from behind the rocks, and, giving a frightful yell, advanced with lances poised ready for battle, when the artist, with great coolness, turned upon them his camera, and somewhat mystically waving over the instrument the black clothes in which his pictures were wrapped, held his lighted cigar in somewhat frightful proximity to the instrument. The savages had heard strange stories of "thunder on wheels," which had, in one terrific burst, swept away whole parties of red skins. Panic stricken, they paused a moment, then veered to the right with eye fixed upon the dreadful instrument. But the strange "mortar" followed them; its dangerous point ever keeping them in a direct line. Pop!-pop!-pop! went a revolver from beneath the instrument. This was but the prelude of the death waging storm about to burst upon them! They could no longer stand this, but with a simultaneous yell broke away towards the rocks. Bang!-bang! went the artist's guns after them. Strange, terrific sounds were reverberated through the mountain gorges, and echoed back by the cavernous rocks--yells and shrieks and rumbling thunders. The smoke cleared away, and the artists were alone. No time was lost in rejoining the caravan; and, the danger being over, it became often the subject of merriment around the camp fires--Jones' charge among the Indians with the daguerreotype instrument! ---------------------------------------------------------------------- (In the same issue...) AUTHORS AND BOOKS. ---------- Hints on the Daguerreotype: or Plain Directions for obtaining Photographic Pictures by the Calotype and Energiatype; also upon Albumenized Paper and Glass, including a Practical Treatise on Photography, &c. One volume. 16 mo. [Philadelphia: A. Hart.] This is a neatly gotten up work, by J.H. Croucher, on a subject of very great popular interest. We have looked it carefully through, and find it replete with curious and valuable information upon the subject of every known process for the development of pictures by the agency of light. To the man of learning it must prove an acquisition, as a sound work of reference upon all the availabilities, discoveries, and improvements in the art upon which it treats, while to the amateur its practical and intelligible rules for securing the best effects by the chrysotype, the cyanotype, the chromotype, the calotype, &c., as well as by the more ordinary processes, must render it a perfect vade mecum. ----------------------------------------------------------------- 06-18-95

Return to: DagNews