Tokens of Affection jewlery with portraits

Pin with portrait of a young girl / Unidentified artist / Daguerreotype, c. 1850 / Private collection  |  Bracelet with portrait of a man / Unidentified artist / Daguerreotype, c. 1855 /Private collection

Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers

October 24, 2008 - June 21, 2009

Photographic jewelry flourished throughout the period from 1840 to 1875 and beyond. This poignant exhibition, drawn primarily from the collection of Larry J. West, featured rare and exquisite jewelry containing portraits in the 19th century's four main photographic processes—daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, tintypes and paper prints.

Produced, exchanged and treasured as "tokens of affection and regard," these relics of loving attachments speak to the deepest of human sentiments. The exhibition was accompanied by portraits (a gift from Mr. West) of some of the pioneering American photographers who created and marketed photographic jewelry, including Mathew Brady, Jeremiah Gurney, Albert Sands Southworth and Josiah Johnson Hawes.

View the online exhibition (requires Flash)

  • Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers

    View of "Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers." Photo by Mark Gulezian. 

  • Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers

    View of "Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers." Photo by Mark Gulezian. 

  • Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers

    View of "Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers." Photo by Mark Gulezian. 

  • Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers

    View of "Tokens of Affection and Regard: Photographic Jewelry and Its Makers." Photo by Mark Gulezian.