During a 10-year genealogy quest to discover my nationality and research my family roots, I was successful at locating over 50 different grandparent portraits and creating a family tree wall in our home. When I was done, I was hooked on antique photographs, family research and purchasing daguerreotypes.
I quickly narrowed my photo collecting to works from the New York photography studios of Jeremiah and his son Benjamin Gurney. Jeremiah was a pioneer in perfecting the daguerreotype process as one of Samuel Morse’s first students in 1840 and setting up one of the first photography studio in the world. His son Benjamin joined Jeremiah in 1858 to form the most successful photography partnership known as J. Gurney & Son.
I have amassed the largest collection of Gurney photographs and ephemera in the world and I will be sharing stories, research discoveries and highlights from the Gurney’s reign as the finest daguerreotypists in Gotham.
My collection includes 17 different photograph formats from the Gurney studios – starting in 1841 to 1888 and every image is online at www.alphonsegallery.zenfolio.com/gurney.
Terry J Alphonse has been married to Janet for 41 years and this week the last of our 6 kids have officially left the nest (39 years of raising kids!). This summer we will be welcoming grandchild 11 and 12. I live north of Detroit Michigan – far from the New York studios of Jeremiah Gurney. He works for a Tier 2 supplier in the auto industry as a manager of Environmental, Health and Safety, and Maintenance – and retirement isn’t far off. Terry is also a licensed residential builder, cabinet maker, and owned a photography studio for nearly 10 years before collecting antique photography.
Presented on June 12, 2021.