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Sixth Plate


Out of stock

SKU: D18-299 Category:

AND DON’T YOU KNOW? We have all seen this style of hat on many of the men, especially of Irish descent who worked their claims in the gold fields of California and later during the construction of the Union Pacific Railroad after the Civil War. While I don’t know the identity of the lad or his nationality, as I peer into his black eyes, and study his evenly lit face, I can’t imagine that his hidden hands had ever touched the edges of a tin pan while he was squatting on the side of a frigid Sierra Nevada Mountain fed stream. That’s not to say this meteoric resealed sixth plate wasn’t the “before” likeness as he was preparing to embark west to seek his fortune. Or once he arrived in Eldorado, he instantly realized the life of a shop keeper supplying miners was a smarter way to go. And this was a gift to himself after “striking it rich” in his own fashion. The operator was a polished and skilled professional. The reflective depth is simply stunning to go along with tremendous contrast and extended tonality. Every daguerreotypist strove mightily to achieve this result on his polished silver surfaces. An extraordinary achievement. The blue spot on his shoulder is not so bright in the original and those brown spots above it are invisible. There are mat marks that should not be a deterrent for any collector who desires an exquisite male portrait.