On this day: the birth of a photography pioneer

Louis_Daguerre_2 Portrait of Louis Daguerre (1787-1851) Father of Photography in 1844

Daguerre in 1844

Photography pioneer Louis Daguerre was born in Cormeilles-en-Parisis, Val-d’Oise, France on the 18th of November, 1797. He became known as a father of photography after inventing the daguerreotype photography process.

Daguerreotype_Daguerre_Atelier_1837Still life with plaster casts, made by Daguerre in 1837, the earliest reliably dated daguerreotype photograph.

Daguerre’s 1837 photograph recreating a still life is the earliest daguerreotype with a reliable date.

Boulevard du Temple, Paris, c. 1838. Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre

Above is Daguerre’s circa 1838 image of Paris. It is the first known candid photograph of a person. A man having his boots polished stood still long enough to be captured.

Also a painter and the inventor of the diorama theatre, Daguerre died in Paris in July of 1851, at the age of sixty-three.

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On this day: a Russian attack on Warsaw

This 1837 painting by Mikhail Lermontov depicts Russian Guard Hussars attacking Warsaw, Poland on the 7th of September, 1831. The original date given was the 26th of August, as the Russian Empire followed the old calendar.

The Battle of Warsaw was part of the Polish–Russian War of 1830–31 (otherwise known as the November Uprising). Tens of thousands were killed in the battle that resulted in the defeat of Polish uprising and victory for the Russians.

Russian_Guard_Hussars_attacking_Warsaw_7th_September_1831 Russian Guard Hussars attacking Warsaw 7th September 1831. Mikhail Lermontov

On this day: the Khodynka Tragedy

Chodynka The Khodynka Tragedy (Russian Ходынская трагедия) was a human stampede that occurred on 30 May [O.S. 18 May] 1896, in Moscow Russia during festivities after the

The Khodynka Tragedy was a deadly stampede that happened during coronation celebrations for Russia’s last emperor, Nicholas II, in 1896.

Falling on the 18th of May on the old calendar (which equates to the 30th of May on the new calendar), 1389 people were trampled or suffocated to death when panic broke out in a crowd of many thousands.

Kratky,_Frantisek_-_Tragedie_na_Chodynskem_poli_(1896) Victim of the Khodynka Tragedy in Moscow Russia 1896

People crowd around one of the victims.

Evidence of the tragedy was cleared away before many at the event in Moscow became aware of it, and Nicholas and his wife Alexandra continued with their schedule, including attending a ball with French diplomats that evening. It was decided it was more important to have good relations with the French than to appease the people of the Russian Empire.

The minor imperial response to the disaster did no favours for the family’s public image.

On this day: the Lagerlunda rail accident

On the 15th of November, 1875, nine people were killed in a head-on collision between two trains travelling between Linköping and Vikingstad in Sweden. The accident occurred just after one in the morning. Signalling confusion meant two trains were accidentally travelling towards each other on a single track.

The wreck is seen in a photograph taken a few days after the accident.

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On this day: the world’s first motor racing contest

#65 Albert Lemaître in Peugeot 3hp at 1894 Paris-Rouen race (2nd place) but judged the official winner. Adolphe Clément is the front seat passenger.

The world’s first motorsport contest took place on the 22nd of July, 1894 from Paris to Rouen, France.

First, a selection event was held in which sixty-nine cars participated. The main 127 kilometre race had twenty-five contestants.

Marquis Jules Félix Philippe Albert de Dion de Wandonne (9 March 1856 – 19 August 1946) was a pioneer of the automobile industry in France.

Count Jules-Albert de Dion circa 1903

Count Jules-Albert de Dion was the first to complete the race, but as cars were also judged on other elements – such as safety – he was not declared the winner. He completed the race in 6 hours and 48 minutes, which averaged 19 kilometres an hour.