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

As I'll be away for a few days, I'm sending today's post a day early. On this day (August 7) in the year 1852, the following text appeared in "Gleason's Pictorial Drawing Room Companion" Vol. 3, No. 6 (Boston; 7 August 1852) page 93: - - - - - - - - - - - FANNING BY STEAM. Mr. Whipple, the daguerreotypist, No. 96, Washington Street, has a most admirable plan for the comfort of his visitors this hot weather. In one corner of the room, near where his pictures are taken, is placed a fan, made on the principle of the wind-mill, which, being set in rapid motion by the steam engine used in the preparation of his plates, gives a current of air equal to a strong "Nor'-wester." As one can imagine, this is most refreshing when the thermometer is up to 90 degrees, and not a breath of air stirring in the street * * * * * A note from Gary: In my DagNews post of 1-11-98, I quoted a passage found a children's book, published in Boston. I feel certain that the author can only be describing Whipple's gallery: "We went to Mr. Shine, who takes the best daguerreotypes; but I certainly thought we should never reach his rooms: we had to go up stairs after stairs, till mamma almost fainted, she was so tired. When we reached what would be called the attic, but which was beautifully finished off with several large, airy rooms, we were warm enough. Papa said the light was better about taking pictures to be so high up, where you could have a clear sweep of the sky, than to be lower down, and have only what light could come in through small side windows. You'd have laughed to see how we became cool; on one side of the room, there was something that looked like a large windmill, and it was twirled round and round, swift as breeze; and all we had to do was just to take some chairs and sit in them before it, and we were fanned down at a rapid rate, I can tell you." From "Grandmother Lee's Portfolio." (no author stated) Illustrated by Hammatt Billings (Boston: Whittemore, Niles, and Hall. 1857) pp. 63-66. The full passage, with illustration, is available on The Daguerreian Society web site at: http://www.daguerre.org/resource/texts/lee.html (I'll mention that as of 8-6-98, the server for the web site is under maintenance, and may not be available for a day or two.) -------------------------------------------------------------- 08-07-98

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