By September of the same year, the secrets of the process had been transmitted to the United States, and an intrepid band of Yankee tinkerers began to experiment for themselves. In October, Philadelphia lamp merchant Robert Cornelius took what has been acknowledged as the first surviving photograph in America- and the world’s first selfie!
|Albert Gregory’s photo of the ship, taken at the Portsmouth (NH) Navy Yard on May 27, 1858. USS Constitution Museum collection.|
|A detail of an 1856 map of the Portsmouth Navy Yard. The red dot is in the approximate location of Constitution‘s bow, and the green dot represents the photographer’s location.|
|A detail of the left side of the photo, showing the Yard’s boat house and a hand-pumped fire engine- a prudent thing to have close at hand.|