NY: Robinson & Caswell, 1856. First edition. 8vo., xii, 175 pp. Publisher's decoratively blind-stamped cloth, gilt title on the upper cover. Short chip at the top of the spine, slightly extending to the upper board; slight stain at the bottom 1 1/2 inches of the front cover; scattered foxing. Very good. Item #53020
In 1850, The Reverend Levi Hill announced his discovery of producing a daguerreotype in color, which he called a "Hillotype." Between the years of 1850 and 1856 when he published his treatise, there was considerable controversy as to whether he really had discovered a color process, or was simply a fraud. According to Eder, the "Hillotype" was nothing more than a daguerreotype with color painted upon it. John Towler, editor of Humphrey's Journal [previously the Daguerreian Journal] wrote in 1865, when Hill died, "He always affirmed to this writer that he did take pictures in their natural colors, but it was done by an accidental combination of chemicals which he could not, for the life of him, again produce!" Today, evidence seems to indicate that Hill did indeed produce daguerreotypes from life in natural colors.