Author Archives: dgm

About dgm

Former IT professional, previously a digital archiving and repository person, ex research psychologist, blogger, twitterer, and amateur classical medieval and nineteenth century historian ...

The Port Fairy mailbox

Back in 2018, I wrote how there was still an early Victorian short door mailbox still in use in Port Fairy. At the time the mailbox was looking a bit faded and unloved, and in need of a coat of … Continue reading

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Sir Humphry Davy and Frankenstein

Humphry Davy, the noted chemist, and technology evangelist (satirized by Rowlandson above) was a friend of William Godwin, and was also known for his experiments with electricity, including building a truly ginormous voltaic pile around 1806. Remarkably, Davy was also … Continue reading

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Mary Shelley and the Bracknell vegetarians

In among other things, I’ve been continuing to delve into Mary Shelley’s time in Dundee. It’s all taken longer than I meant it to, in part because I bought a couple of books on the subject and one of them … Continue reading

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Collodion what?

Yesterday I was puzzling over the rise in the use of the word collodion as a term for early photographs. The term derives from the collodion process (or wet plate process) which allowed photographs to be made using glass plates … Continue reading

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And the winner is …

Following on from my trying to work out when we started calling photographs photographs, I though I’d use the Google Ngram viewer one more type to look at the relative usage of the following terms for photographs over the period … Continue reading

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When did we start calling photographs photographs?

The first photographic images widely used were known as daguerreotypes after the technique used.  (There were other techniques and names in the 1840s and 50s, eg calotype, ambrotype, but daguerreotype was the first.) Later on we started calling them the … Continue reading

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The earliest Australian Daguerreotype advert ?

I’d fed the cat, and it wasn’t quite time to start cooking dinner, so I thought I’d trawl Trove for the earliest advert I could find for someone offering to take your daguerreotype from the Australian of 18 January 1843. … Continue reading

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A daguerreotype advert from 1855

From the February 1855 edition of Bradshaw’s guide: interesting to see that daguerreotypes and stereoscopic images were being advertised as early as 1855 or perhaps not as J A Rochlitz was working as a daguerrotypist in Beechworth in 1857, and … Continue reading

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Why did Mary Shelley go by sea to Dundee ?

Years of BBC adaptions of Jane Austen novels and Christmas cards showing mail coaches in the snow might have led us to expect that Mary might have travelled all the way from London to Dundee by mail coach or by … Continue reading

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Mary Shelley and the Dundee Radicals

Last night we watched Mary Shelley on SBS On Demand. Other than knowing her as the author of Frankenstein, and some vague gossip about her and both Shelley and Byron, I knew nothing – I even had her father, William … Continue reading

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