The 
Daguerreian Society


On this day (September 24) in the year 1853, the following notice 
appeared in "The Illustrated London News" pg. 258:
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                       THE DAGUERREOTYPE.
           (To the Editor of the Illustrated London News.)
                107, Regent-street, 22nd Sept. 1853
  Allow me to correct an error which is contained in your notice of the 
proceedings of the British Association at Hull, wherein it is stated 
that "a daguerreotype portrait could be now obtained in the 1000th part 
of a second."  The facts are these: on Friday, the 9th, in the Chemical 
Section, after a lecture I had given on the daguerreotype process an 
interesting discussion took place on the photogenic power of the moon's 
rays.  I was asked in what time the rays of the moon could operate upon 
a daguerreotype tablet, and in what time those of the sun could do the 
same.  I answered that I had obtained an image of the full moon in four 
seconds; and, with the same apparatus, one of the sun in the thousanth 
part of a second; which very nearly corresponded with the calculation 
made by several philosophers, who had ascertained before the discovery 
of photography that the moon reflected only one 250,000th part of the 
rays of the sun.  Photography has, therefore, been not only the means 
of corroborating the truth of previous experiments; but of proving that 
the moon reflects as much photogenic rays as visual rays.
  My statement, as you see, referred only to the taking of an image of 
the sun, but not of portraits of the human face; and, as your notice, 
which will be seen some hundred thousands of readers, in all parts of 
the world, might convey the idea that I have made some new discovery by 
which the Photographic surface is rendered considerably more sensitive 
than it is by the most improved process known, the insertion of this 
letter in your next number will disabuse those who might have been 
misled by the report. 
                      I am, &c.,                  A. CLAUDET.

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Posted for your enjoyment.     Gary W. Ewer     
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09-24-97


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