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Document number: 4759
Date: 12 Mar 1843
Recipient: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Author: JONES Calvert Richard
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Collection number historic: LA43-037
Last updated: 25th March 2010

Margam Park. <1>
March 12. 1843.

My dear Sir

I was much obliged by your information on the positive process, in which I am extremely interested, and such being the case, am sure that you will pardon me for writing directly to beg you to send me the details and proportions for making the paper you refer to, as I have never seen the description of the second part of your Calotype patent <2>.

If you will have the great kindness to direct me thus far, I will instantly set about some experiments, though I fear that my limited chemical knowledge will not enable me to improve upon it: I should be most truly glad to find that you were directing your inventive mind to the subject of positive photographs; the great desideratum in them at present appears to be greater sensitiveness. If that could be obtained I should be disposed to abandon the plates, <3> (except for particular purposes,) as their weight and perishable nature are highly objectionable, (though by the application of great heat very cautiously to the solution of chloride of gold I have succeeded in fixing them wonderfully) but the greatest objection I have to the Daguerreotype process is, that owing to some mysterious reason, to me utterly incomprehensible I have in various climates and times of the year found the utmost care and attention for 3 weeks or a month attended rewarded by no results. Whether this arises from some malady in the Iodine, or some peculiar oxidation of the mercury which prevents the vapour ascending I can not imagine.

I must again apologise for so soon troubling you, which I trust the intense interest I feel in the subject will excuse

I am yours very truly,
Calvert R. Jones.

Will you direct to Margam?


1. Margam Park, Glamorgan: home of Christopher Rice Mansel Talbot.

2. No. 8242, "Photographic Pictures," 1841. Although the developed calotype negative process was the main thrust of this patent, WHFT also included a process for direct positives on paper and other minor processes.

3. The silver plates used for daguerreotypes.

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