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National Science and Media Museum
Daguerreotype of scene in Calcutta, India. Ten thin people in the image are possibly farm workers? It appears to be a rural scene with warehouse or similar building in the background with a flat roof. The building is made of stone, it has a inner balcony with an awning made of plant based material possibly palm leaves. There is a round window to the side and three water spouts coming off the roof. There is a palm leaf roofed structure to the left with the rear of a cow beside it. Round baskets or stones are to the right of the three standing men. Four children crouch in the foreground, one is a girl with a head covering and sari. The men all wear cloths Five men stand to the left and right of the children and one man sits on a stool in the building. A piece of cloth hangs off a pole behind the three standing men. There is a low brick wall and pit to the left with piles of straw. Another palm leafed structure is visible to the right of the central building with trees in the distance.
On the verso of the backing are details relating to the platemaker a six pointed star suggesting it is a Gaudin plate. This daguerreotype links to 1990-5036/DD/15 , 1990-5036/DD/17 and 1990-5036/DD/13. Daguerreotypes appear to have started in India 1840 and went on being produced until about 1868) As early as January 1840, Thacker and Company of Calcutta were importing daguerreotype cameras and advertising them in the daily paper, Friend of India, but the first-known commercial photographer was F. Schranhofer, who had a calotype studio at 2 Kyd Street, Calcutta (1849). In 1850 Augustus G. Roussac opened a daguerreotype studio in Bombay. Two years later, J. B. Newland opened a studio for daguerreotype studio at 6 London Buildings, Calcutta. Though daguerreotype studios persisted as late as 1868, they gave way to calotype establishments in India as everywhere else. Fred Fiebig, who was an experienced lithographer (1847), turned to calotypes and took a large number of studies of Calcutta, Madras, and Ceylon.