American Treasures of the Library of Congress: Reason

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Independence Square

Mr. Peale's Daguerrian Rooms
Mr. Peale's Daguerrian Rooms

Peale Business Card, ca. 1840s
Manuscript Division (230A)
Gift of Mrs. Marion S. Carson, 1996

South West Gate Leading into Independence Square, Philadelphia
Peale Family Studio
South West Gate Leading into Independence Square, Philadelphia
Approximate quarter-plate daguerreotype,
ca. 1845
Manuscript Division (230)
Gift of Mrs. Marion S. Carson, 1996

Daguerreotypes of outdoor scenes were less popular than studio portraits due to the technical difficulties of this early photographic process. The daguerreotypist in the Peale Family Studios captured Philadelphia's historic Independence Square, probably working from a window in a building across the street. A broadside on the gate post leading into the square advertises a demonstration of the effects of laughing gas. Also shown is the Peale business card.

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