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April 23, 2017

Southworth & Hawes: The First Great American Masters of Photography

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. Writing in the Photographic and Fine Art Journal, August 1855, the contemporary Philadelphia daguerreotypist Marcus Aurelius Root paid them this praise: "Their style, indeed, is peculiar to themselves; presenting beautiful effects of light and shade, and giving depth and roundness together with a wonderful softness or mellowness. These traits have achieved for them a high reputation with all true artists and connoisseurs."

Here is an amazing photo collection of Victorian portraits taken by Southworth & Hawes from the late 1840s to the early 1850s.



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