Chapter 1 Setting takes place in October 1872 in New York. Narrator is a young boy- apprentice to a photographer named Mr. Middleditch who doesn’t get much business. A black servant girl makes an appointment for her Mistress, Mrs. Von Macht. Vocabulary I Want to Learn About: befogged, somber, garb- p. 1 deferential, devoid, brooding, apprentice cartes de visite, presumption, curt - p. 2 foretell- p. 3 O. Mr. M is probably not a very good photographer if he doesn’t get a lot of business. Q. I wonder what extraordinary events will occur?
Chapter 2 Get to know the main character, Horace Carpentine. Smart, responsible, eager to learn, youngest of 3 children. Left home at age 14 to learn science of photography. Raised during time of Civil War- does not seem to agree with idea of slavery. Vocabulary I Want to Know About: upheaval, wafted, fervent, Abolition, bunkum- p. 4 milliner, dubbed, martyred- p. 5 daguerreotype- p. 6 Q. Who is Horace Greeley? He must have done something important if Horace’s dad named him after the man. Q. If Mr. M rarely had any business, why would he tell Horace’s dad that he was very successful and quite wealthy? Is he a liar? Q. Other worlds? Is the black servant girl from another world?
Horace Greeley February 3, 1811 – November 29, 1872 Horace Greeley was an American newspaper editor. His New York Tribune was the most influential paper from the 1840s to the 1870s. He was highly opposed to slavery and even ran for President in 1872. Sadly, he died before the votes were ever counted.
The Silver Sunbeam: A Practical and Theoretical Text-Book on Sun Drawing and Photographic Printing is actually a real book and can be purchased on Amazon for $25.65 Daguerreotype was the first successful photographic process invented by Louis Daguerre. This daguerreotype is the earliest-known photograph of Abraham Lincoln, taken at age 37 when he was a frontier lawyer in Springfield and Congressman-elect from Illinois. (Source: Ostendorf, p. 4)
Cameras, Then & Now! Wet-Plate Field Camera Nikon DSLR 3000
Vocabulary I Want to Know About Befogged- unclear, in a fog Somber- gloomy, dark, dull Garb- clothes Deferential- respectful, courteous Devoid- lacking, not having Brooding- daydreaming of depressing thoughts Apprentice- person who works for another to learn a trade Cartes de visite- photos sized like trading cards Presumption- reason for believing Curt- brief, rude Foretell- predict Upheaval- catastrophe Wafted- to float through the air or over water Fervent- heartfelt; hot, burning Abolition- the ending of slavery Bunkum- nonsense talk Milliner- a person who designs, sells or makes hats for women Dubbed- nickname, designate Martyred- a person who dies because of their beliefs Daguerreotype- one of the earliest photographic processes, in which the image was produced on iodine-sensitized silver and developed in mercury vapor Chapter 1Chapter 2
Chapter 3 Got to know Mr. M. He was in fact a liar. He greatly exaggerated his status to Horace’s dad. Mr. M actually struggled as a photographer. Mr. M. is lazy and lets Horace do all the tedious parts of photography while he kisses up to customers and takes their pictures. Vocabulary I Want to Learn About: derivation, absurdly- p. 8 tinged, eke, aperture- p. 9 R. Horace sleeps in the kitchen?! He must really want to learn this trade. R. What a phony Mr. M is! I can’t believe Horace still sees this as a good opportunity. Horace must have a lot of patience. Maybe he doesn’t really have a choice either, but to accept Mr. M the way he is and just learn about photography.
Vocabulary I Want to Know About: Derivation- beginning, origin Absurdly- senseless, illogical Tinged- stain, saturate Eke- stretch, supplement Aperture- an adjustable opening in an optical instrument such as a camera.
Chapter 4 Mrs. Von Macht arrives for her appointment. She is wealthy and in mourning. Her daughter, Eleanora, died at the age of 13 from Scarlet Fever. Mrs. Von Macht brings up the idea of ghosts. Vocabulary I Want Know About : reticule- p. 11 demurely, hastened, brilliantine- p. 13 stammered- p. 16 R. Mr. M is such a LOSER!! Pretending to be busy when he really isn’t! Only thinking of money when this poor woman is mourning her daughter. He annoys me! Q. Who is she mourning? C. Mr. M kind of reminds me of Uncle Vernon, not only in physical appearance, but also in the way they are both sneaky and dishonest. Q. What is Scarlet Fever?
Vocabulary I Want to Know About: reticule- a small purse or bag; network of fine lines demurely- modest, reserved hastened- to hurry brilliantine- an oily preparation used to make the hair lustrous stammered- hesitate, repeat
Chapter 5 Learned of Mrs. Von Macht’s daughter. Mrs. Von Macht wants Mr. M to photograph her so she can leave the photo at Eleanora’s grave to comfort her. Mr. Middleditch has agreed to photograph her at her home. Pegg, the servant girl, reveals that Eleanora did not die of Scarlet Fever. Vocabulary I Want to Know About: commission- p. 18 oblige, scullery- p.19 P. Mr. M will take advantage of Mrs. Von Macht and raise prices just because she is wealthy and knows cost is no a concern for her. He could even prolong the photo sessions. Q. Pegg keeps shaking her head at what Mrs. Von Macht says. Does she know something? Q. How did Eleanora die? Did mother have something to do with it? R. Ha! Mr. M thinks he was chosen for his reputation and Mrs. Von Macht really has no idea who he is!!
Vocabulary I Want to Know About: commission- special permission to be in charge or carry out a duty oblige- to agree to, promise scullery- a small room or section of a pantry in which food is cleaned, trimmed, and cut into cooking portions before being sent to the kitchen.
Chapter 6 Mr. Middleditch comes up with a scheme to fool Mrs. Von Macht into believing Eleanora is in the photo with her. He is going to trick her in order to make a profit! Horace thinks this is horrible, but has no say in the decision. Vocabulary I Want to Know About: mundane- (boring?) p. 24 Folly- (mistakes?) p. 26 gusto- (delight?) p. 27 O. Horace is very respectful, kind and caring. He always remembers Eleanora’s name. Mr. M can’t seem to. P. Mr. M will pretend to “see” Eleanora’s ghost to keep Mrs. Von Macht around to spend more money on pictures. R. Mr. M is so full of himself! Very selfish and insensitive.
Vocabulary I Want to Know: mundane- common, ordinary, everyday folly- stupidity gusto- liking, delight
Chapter 7 Mr. M gave a spy camera to Horace and wanted him to take secret pictures of Eleanora (via her portraits) Horace does not like the idea of tricking Mrs. Von Macht, but Mr. M wants him to, so Horace must follow his orders. Mr. M is trying to convince Horace that this idea is ok and promises he will not force Mrs. Von Macht to make any judgments. Vocabulary I Want to Know: burly (rough, chunky?) suppress (hold back) jest (joke, like a jester) Q. Stirn Concealed Vest Camera- is it a spy camera? R. Wow! That’s really selfish of Mr. M. He wants to use a sneaky tactic to make money off of Mrs. Von Macht. P. Will use spy camera to take pics of Eleanora. Q. Is Horace really going to go through with it? I think he probably will because he doesn’t want to get sent home. He has to learn this trade.
Vocabulary I Want to Know: burly- large in bodily size; beefy, hefty suppress- to hold back or do away with jest- joke
Stirn Concealed Vest Camera In 1886 C. P. Stirn bought the rights to make a unique kind of vest pocket camera that was invented by Robert D. Gray and first produced by Western Electric Co. in New York. Rudolf Stirn lived in the German capital Berlin where he manufactured vest cameras for his brother C. P. Stirn. From 1886 to 1888 15,000 examples of their Concealed Vest Camera were sold. The camera had to be loaded with a round film plate, 14 cm or 17cm in diameter. The round brass body with the exposure dial (with or without clock hand) and the funnel type lens barrel gave it an unique appearance. Two main types were made, one for making four 6cm wide round exposures on a round film plate with a diameter of 17cm, the other with smaller lens funnel, for making six 4cm wide round exposures on a round plate with a diameter of 14cm. This camera type fits not only in a vest pocket, it can be hidden in it so that the narrow lens opening looks through the vest pocket's buttonhole. Thus the camera got its popular type name "buttonhole camera", but also detective camera, spy camera, and last not least vest pocket camera. The cameras were marketed in the U.S. and Canada by Stirn & Lyon in New York. http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/3633901
Chapter 8 Mr. M and Horace arrive at the Von Macht house. We get a visual of 5 th Avenue area- very wealthy. Horace sets up photo plates in scullery as Pegg watches and they begin to talk about the photo process and then about Eleanora. Eleanora died because she was neglected by Von Machts. Eleanora was not Von Macht’s daughter! Only the one portrait of Eleanora in the house- Mrs. Von Macht lied about the house being full of her pictures. Pegg and Eleanora were like sisters. Vocabulary I Want to Know: perambulator (stroller?), bootblacks (homeless?), loitering (hanging around?), omnibuses (bus?)- p. 37 akin (similar?), cornices (base that holds the flames?)- p. 38 swindle (trick?), monotony (single tone?), immensely (hugely?)- p. 39 intolerance (not able to tolerate)- p. 40 agitated (bothered?)- p. 45
Chapter 8 con’t: V. When the author described the scene on 5 th avenue I got a really good image in my mind of what people were dressed in, as well as what types of transportation were used back then. This helped me understand the time period a little better. V. I also was able to visualize the scullery better and see the actual items in there and tell what it smelled like. R/P. I am glad Pegg and Horace are talking. Maybe they will become friends. R. What?! Eleanora was not the Von Macht’s daughter? R. They killed her! Maybe she is restless b/c she wants revenge? Q. Why did they kill her? They must have wanted something she had.