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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

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Locksmith: 1850s

Locksmith: 1850s

Circa 1850s occupational portrait of a latchmaker, photographer unknown. Sixth-plate daguerreotype. One of 25 occupational portraits in the Library of Congress daguerreotype collection. View full size.


Like a Locksmith

Have you seen Madonna's arms lately? Talk about veins!

Arms and the Man

I would guess that being a "latchmaker" requires a great deal of arm strength -- hence the strong arms.

I'm curious though as to how he came to get his picture taken. Wouldn't it be unusual for someone like him to have his photo taken in the 1850's? Too expensive?


What does "sixth-plate" daguerreotype mean?

[One-sixth of an 8½ x 6½ silver-coated copper plate. More info here. - Dave]


Something about him is oddly attractive. And his veins! Oh wow, almost impressive. Sorry, Dave, I'm sure you're sick of me only commenting on how good looking the men are.

Those veins...

...are so prominent. I don't think I've ever seen veins like this on anybody!

THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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