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

Today's item starts with a variant of the familiar phrase "Secure the shadow 'ere the substance fade." I posed this question on PhotoHst without success, allow me to question all 160 of you. What is the source of this oft-used phrase? It is quoted in Levi Hill's 1850 "Treatise on Daguerreotype" (Part II, page 73) as being from Shakespeare. Electronic searches indicate that it isn't. I recall once reading a discussion of the source, but cannot for the life of me find the article again. Anyone knowledgeable on this one? On this day (September 15) in the year 1841, the following advertisement appeared in the "Springfield Gazette" (Vol. 10, No.37): - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - "Catch the shadow ere its substance fades." D a g u e r r e o t y p e M i n i a t u r e s , AT MASONIC HALL, FOR A SHORT TIME ONLY. PRICE REDUCED TO $3. THE Subscriber having spent much time and money in perfecting himself in the Photographic Art, and practiced success- fully in various places, now offers his serv- ices to the citizens of Springfield and its vi- cinity, for a short time, at Masonic Hall. He is in possession of all those important im- provements in the art which have been re- cently made, combined with others of his own invention, and flatters himself that his skill in the business will recommend him to their favor. Likenesses, taken in a few mo- ments, without the aid of a strong light, which, by the old method, was liable to dis- tort the features. To those who are unac- quainted with this art, it may perhaps be well to say, that it gives a lasting and perfect delineation of the features, drawn by the pencil of light, the hand of Nature, more striking and accurate than can possibly be obtained in any other way. The Subscriber has reduced his price to the lowest possible limits consistent with safety to himself, and as low as can possibly be obtained else- where, while his style of workmanship he is willing to compare with any in the country. Price of a single portrait Three Dollars.-- For a group of two--Five Dollars. Satis- faction warranted. Scenery, Buildings, Paint- ings, Busts, &c. beautifully copied. Ins- truction given upon reasonable terms The public are respectfully invited to call. C. FAXON. Springfield Sept. 14. Tf37. ----------------------------------------------------------------- 09-15-96

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