MAGNIFICENCE ON A MIRROR. Samuel Root certainly worked his daguerreian magic on this group?s archivally restored half plate that he executed in his gallery at 363 Broadway in New York City. According to John Craig, Samuel and his brother Marcus shared this space from 1849 to 1853. Samuel had other men working with him later, until about 1857. The women?s costumes suggest a date circa 1853 or even later. Yet the simple brass mat, common preserver and plate preparation all point to an earlier sitting. The complete leather case, with a deep red embossed pad was used throughout the 1850s. What none of you can see in this reproduction is the astounding brilliance and surreal holographic depth on the silver. This piece radiates sparkling rays of reflections! Beginning with the detached pose of the lad, who was seated on an elaborately carved wooden chair that was so finely polished the light crackled on the dark surfaces, and moving to the right where an older woman was also seated, the entire scene was made successful because of the adorable gal on the right. She stood and held hands with her attractive companion. Their long coils flowed freely in twisted cascades of shoulder length hair. Obviously the roomy space was equipped with a skylight. The brightness of illumination so perfectly directed on each subject created lifelike personalities! The shimmering reflections on the folds of the females? dresses were amazing. The contrast and tremendous range of mid-tones was equally impressive. A previous person didn?t properly dry the surface and there are watermarks at the top of the likeness and a couple touches the younger girl?s hair. Tiny mold mites are randomly seen along with teeny mat marks on the right. The oxidation flairs out from the left side and surrounds the quartet. There is one faint touch mark from my finger in the neutral backdrop near the gal?s shoulder on the left. (Let me say that after conserving approximately 10,000 daguerreotypes, accidents can still occur. Let this be a lesson to everyone who attempts to take apart daguerreotypes)! Curiously, there are vertical as well as horizontal buff strokes visible if you really look for them. Although the daguerreotype is not perfect, I will guarantee that the foursome will electrify the next owner!