Southworth & Hawes
Southworth & Hawes
Albert Sands Southworth (1811-1894) and Josiah Johnson Hawes (1808-1901) operated a daguerreotype studio together in Boston, MA. They are considered the finest American portrait photographers of the nineteenth century.

They were in partnership for approximately twenty years beginning in 1843 with commercial portraiture as their primary focus. A unique characteristic of the partnership was that the studio’s work was not completed by several different photographers. Instead, all work produced by the studio was by the hand of either Southworth, Hawes, or the two men together.

The George Eastman House collection consists of approximately 1200 daguerreotypes by Southworth & Hawes. The Museum mounted a major exhibition in collaboration with ICP in 2005 called Young America: The Daguerreotypes of Southworth & Hawes. For further information on the artists and exhibition see www.eastmanhouse.org/icp/index.html.

Daguerreotypes are sharply defined, highly reflective, one-of-a-kind photographs on silver-coated copper plates, packaged behind glass and kept in protective cases. Introduced in 1839 by Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre, the daguerreotype process was the first commercially successful photographic process and is distinguished by a remarkable clarity of pictorial detail. Although early daguerreotypes required exposures of several minutes, advances in the process quickly reduced exposure times, to the relief of many sitters. Daguerreotypes were popular through the 1840s and into the 1850s, especially for portrait photography.
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