The Thoreau Society and The Thoreau Farm Trust – The Thoreau Society & Thoreau Farm Trust Online Auction 2018
Auction Ends: Mar 29, 2018 02:00 PM EDT


Maxham Daguerrotype - Henry D. Thoreau

Item Number
Estimated Value
$450 USD
$200 USD to alektherien
Number of Bids
21  -  Bid History

Item Description

This is a hi res scan of The Thoreau Society's 1856 Maxham Daguerreotype image of Henry D. Thoreau.  The image is 8x10. It is printed on acid free, museum quality, heavy paper.  It is in a matted wooden frame with UV protection glass.

The Maxham Daguerrotype

Calvin R. Greene was a Thoreau ?disciple? who lived in Rochester, Michigan, and who first began corresponding with Thoreau in January 1856.  When Greene at once asked for a photographic image of the author, Thoreau initially replied: ?You may rely on it that you have the best of me in my books, and that I am not worth seeing personally ? the stuttering, blundering, clodhopper that I am.? (Correspondence, 407)  Yet Greene repeated his request and sent money for the sitting.  Thoreau must have kept this commitment to his fan in the back of his mind for the next several months.

In mid-June 1856, during a trip to Worcester, Massachusetts, Henry Thoreau visited the Daguerrean Palace of Benjamin D. Maxham and had three daguerreotypes taken for fifty cents each.  He gave two of the prints to his Worcester friends and hosts, H.G.O. Blake and Theo Brown.  The third he sent to Calvin Greene in Michigan.  ?While in Worcester this week I obtained the accompanying daguerreotype ? which my friends think is pretty good ? though better looking than I,? Thoreau wrote. (Ibid., 426)


Thoreau, Henry David.  Correspondence.  Edited by Walter Harding and Carl Bode.  New York University Press, 1958.

Item Special Note

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Donated By:

Friend of the Thoreau Society