Daguerreian Society

On this day (December 13) in the year 1845, JML Scovill wrote the
following letter to "A.S. Southworth & Co.:
- - - - - - - - - - - -

                         Philad  Dec. 13th, 1845
Messrs. A.S. Southworth & Co.
                           I have just
received a letter from my brother asking
what kind of a stamp or laybill he
should have made to put on the holders
& the swing beam.  He proposes to have a
stand cast say                (not much like
the drawing) & have the letters faced down
& put a brass laybill on the back plate of the
holders.  Also he thinks it would be better
& less trouble as there is & will be many
little expenses & accounts to keep to fix
on a sum we shall pay you on every
sett sold instead of keeping an accurate
account & then dividing equally the profits.
If that was agreed on we would have them
stamped Southworth & Hawes Patent 1845
Scovills propritors.  What say you to
our paying you three dollars on
each sett sold & we to make no
charge of the $40.00 advanced
to you to make none for what you have
paid.  I wish you to write us Waterbury
by the first mail after this is received, for he
writes me he shall have some finished
in all next week to have the laybills
put on for market, we shall calculate
to get one on to every operator in the
United States within 12 months.
If this proposition should not meet
your views write us what yours
are.  All we want is to save the trouble
of keeping the account, as many will have
to be sold by agents & commissions &
expenses to be paid & presume some
may never get paid for though we shall
try to sell for cash.  We shall also have
to sell to some for less if they purchase
to sell again.  We shall try to get
$12.00 for the minimum 1/4 holder & frame
which will be the principal ones sold
the holders for 1/2 & whole sizes will have
to be sold for about what they cost
& not a great many wanted at that
when sold at wholesale say $10.00.
Now don't fail to write and
put it in the mail before
I go to Boston to have you hand it to
me there.  Mr. Mayall says the one he
has answers a good purpose.  We have
had a real cold day here.

                  Respectfully yours
                      JML Scovill
Saturday evng  10 o'clk

* * * * * *
(The apparatus in question is apparently the same as listed in
Barger, M. Susan, "United States Patents Related to the Practice of
Daguerreotype" in "The Daguerreian Annual 1996" as the following:

    USP 4573  13 June 1846
    "Plate holder, self-regulating suspension."
    Southworth and Hawes, Boston, Massachusetts
    Plate holder for use during the polishing of plates.
    POR (1846): 264.
    JFI 44 (1847): 89.

Text cited from a transcript of an original manuscript in the collection
of Matthew R. Isenburg.)
Posted for your enjoyment.     Gary W. Ewer     

Return to: DagNews 1997

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