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In September 1839 the front page of the Colored American newspaper carried an article about a process invented by the artist and scientist Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre for permanently fixing an image onto a surface. Named for its inventor, the daguerreotype was the first commercially successful photographic process. The procedure for making daguerreotypes was shared freely with the world, and Americans were quick to embrace the new medium as both subjects and creators. Within a year of the invention the first photographic likenesses created by an African American were exhibited by Jules Lyons a New Orleans artist turned daguerreian practitioners of the process were called daguerreotypists or daguerreians Before the invention of the daguerreotype the visual documentation of places persons objects and events was left to the interpretation of illustrators and painters Only the rich and persons of note could afford the luxury of having their likenesses captured by ...