If Emma Hale Smith's 1845 Photograph could be Reprinted onto a CDV, So could an 1844 Photograph of Joseph Smith
A story first:
When I bought the CDV, that I BELIEVED was Joseph Smith Junior, I was happy, excited, and scared... Once this photograph was on it's way, in the mail, it all became real and even though I knew he matched facial features of the death mask of Joseph, I needed to research things to verify it's authenticity. I studied the history of photography, clothing styles of the 1840s (I carefully followed a list of things to check out to verify an old photograph). As I found out more information, that could very easily tag it as NOT being J.S. Jr, like it NOT being a daguerreotype, as the Juvenile Instructor website said, or as JS III said his father's picture was, but an old Carte de Vista... Once I knew for sure it really was a paper CDV, which was the moment I opened it in the mail, my heart sank, because what I found days prior that CDVs were not patented until 1854 (Joseph Smith died in 1844), but I tried to stay positive. www.britannica.com/technology/carte-de-visite
I researched the history of negatives (which allows the photographer to be reprint the photograph many times, unlike daguerreotypes which didn't use negatives and only came with one print). Paper photograph actually existed since 1835, it was patented in about 1841, most things aren't patented for a while later on, they have to perfect things. Talbot was using negatives pretty much from the start, well BEFORE Joseph Smith died.
The inventor, of paper photography, Henry Fox Talbot was from England; patented the salt water print in 1841 and even released a book in 1844 titled, "The Pencil of Nature ". Not only was paper photography really, truly invented before Joseph Smith's death, the use of negatives was invented 9 years before his death and this BOOK, released the year that he died, existed BECAUSE Talbot knew how to use negatives to reprint his own paper photography, in a BOOK, for many to see! www.britannica.com/biography/William-Henry-Fox-Talbot (fun fact:in 1844, major of the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints were in or from England)
As I was learning about my photograph I was IMPATIENT and contacted anyone that I thought could help me verify this. Some were not willing and others were. I was told by one person it couldn't be Joseph solely because it was CDV, which, as I said, was my initial concern as well, prior to emailing this person. Ironically, the day of their negative email shutting me down, I felt strongly impressed that I should research Emma Smith's 1845 photograph. I looked at a few scanned versions of it and found one showing the whole card and realized that a photograph of Emma Smith, c. 1845 (below, left), was in fact a CDV as well; answering all of my questions and quelling my doubts. Although CDV would be patented in the 1850s, a picture of David Hyrum Smith, as a baby, with writing stating he was born three months after his father was killed (in 1844), Emma Smith’s 1845 image had been reprinted. I even found more old CDV reprints of this exact image of Emma Smith, so although many theorize that it was a reprint from a Daguerreotype, it is more than likely a reprint from an original paper photograph, that had a negative... If her photograph almost a year after Joseph’s death could be reprinted onto a CDV, so could Joseph’s...
Left, is a different version of the Emma Smith Photograph with baby David, evidence that an 1845 photograph was and could be reprinted. Photo comes from an official Church News Website, stating only,
"Photograph shows Emma Smith holding her infant son, David Hyrum Smith, who was born after the martyrdom of his father, Joseph Smith." One librarian, from the Church History Department, would not consider that I had a photograph of Joseph Smith Jr, because it's a CDV- PAPER photograph and "only daguerreotypes" were in use in 1844, which just isn't true... Paper photography existed just as early as daguerreotypes. So if EMMA could have her 1845 photograph taken and reprinted, why can't an 1844 photograph also be reprinted onto a CDV? www.ldschurchnewsarchive.com/articles/60139/Martyrdom-aftermath-difficult-for-Emma.html
J.S. Bibbins lived and died in Plano, Ill., and his Father knew Emma Smith
Researching J.S. Bibbins, the "Photographic Artist", I found he lived and died in Plano, Illinois (see link above), which is supportive information. Bibbins grew up in Newark, Ill. and began his photography business there, which is in Kendall County, and only half a days journey from Plano, thus being very close to the RLDS Headquarters, he was in close proximity to help the RLDS Leader Joseph Smith III get a reprint of his Father (Joseph Smith Jr.), as this is what most historians and bloggers believe. I believe that his Father, Elisha Bibbins also knew Emma Smith, from researching his family history.
Joseph Slocum Bibbins was born in 1821 and he is verified to have lived in Newark (KendallCounty) in 1840. He stays in Newark for most of his life, dying in Plano, Illinois in 1891. The Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, from 1866–1881; had their headquarters in Plano, Illinois, which is ALSO in Kendall County. Add in the fact that the man who sold this photograph to me, found this in a “Smith Family Photo Album” with many Smith’s named, living in places that Joseph Smith lived before his death, specifically Illinois and Missouri, this is incredibly supportive information and a good clue... . Joseph Smith's sons lived in Plano from 1866, as they lead the RLDS Church (until they moved the headquarters to Missouri). What this means, actually, is that my image, likely a reprint, just like Emma Smith's, could have been printed by Joseph Smith's sons, he lived close enough to them. www.cofchrist.org/visit-plano
Emma Smith possibly Knew the Photographer's Father? Possibly.
If you look at the above link (coltech...) you will see detailed information about J.S. Bibbin's Father, Elisha Bibbins, who was a circuit rider (traveling methodist preacher) in Pennsylvania around 1815. I found a very interesting story about Emma Smith, as a little girl, praying in the woods, detailed on her descendant's website, with several reference to an Elisha Bibbins, who was a circuit rider in Pennsylvania around the same time as mentioned above, leading me to wonder if they are the same man and there is a family connection between this "photographic artist" and Emma Smith. Link: https://www.josephsmithjr.org/issac-and-elizabeth-hale-in-their-endless-mountain-home/
Travels to Newark Illinois
The Joseph Smith Journals do mention Newark, Illinois, when Joseph was still alive, there was a Political Meeting in Newark Illinois on May 18th, 1844:
"Newark, Kendall Co., Ill., May 18th. 1844. "Conference convened pursuant to notice. There were present, two of the quorum of the Twelve, one High Priest, two Seventies, nine Elders, one Priest, and one Teacher. Conference called to order by Elder Woodruff. Elder GeoeA. Smith called to the chair. Conference opened by singing, and prayer by the President ‘Representation of the several branches was called for, when the following branches were represented as follows: "Newark branch, 35 members..."
The JS Journal speaks of the political meeting, in Newark, Ill.:
J.S. Bibbins is verified to have been living in Newark since 1840s. Newark was a place where there were quite a few LDS Members. In 1844, Joseph Slocum Bibbins was in his early 20s, could have taken Joseph Smith Junior's photograph or he could have done a reprint for a family member, such as was done with Emma Smith's 1845 photograph (reprinted, see below)... Eventually ending up in a“Smith Family Photo Album”.
It is theorized that Emma Smith's CDV photograph was a copy from a Daguerreotype, but probably only because so many people don't understand that paper photography came into existence the same times as Daguerreotypes. There has not been found a daguerreotype of this above image of Emma Smith, to my knowledge. Since Daguerreotypes did not use negatives and most often were small, and encased in glass (that if removed would quickly damage the image), I find it HIGHLY unlikely that this ever was one. Paper photograph became more popular than daguerreotypes, because they always used negatives and could be reprinted.
Joseph Smith III's Photograph taken in the Same County as My 1840s Illinois Guy
Left, is an image of Joseph Smith III, on similar CDV card stock, from adopted daughter of JS Jr., Julia Smith's photo album. On the back of this Photograph of JS III, they say it states: "R. Thompson's Fine Art Gallery . . . Sandwich, Ill."
This photograph of J.S. III was taken 12 miles from JS Bibbins. It's possible my photograph was reprinted around the same time. Maybe, J.S. III reprinted a photograph of HIS biological father J.S. Jr., for a photo album, as was done with Emma Smith's 1845 photograph (which was probably reprinted FOR Julia's photo album). Either way, my photograph was possibly reprinted by Bibbins, in a city not far from where J.S. III lived and would live for another 20 years, along with his siblings, as they took part in the RLDS faith...
One blogger states that Joseph Smith III was writing letters, shopping around to find people to reprint a photo of his father: