The Oldest Paris Photo is Also the World’s First Photo Featuring People
The oldest Paris photo is at the same time the first photo in the world to feature people in it. This particular photograph is a shot of the city of Paris taken by Louis Daguerre, the inventor of daguerreotype.
His photography techniques were the most common used techniques of the 19th century so it is only fitting that Louis Daguerre should hold the record for the oldest Paris photo and for the world’s first photo with humans.
The picture was taken at Place de la République in Paris. Louis Daguerre composed his image looking southward toward Boulevard du Temple. Given the unique architectural features of Paris, the photo makes it very easy to see that the capital of France is the city we are looking at right now.
This unique and iconic photo was taken in 1838 and it gives us a time-traveler’s insight into how Paris looked like almost 180 years ago. We’re pretty sure that Louis Daguerre only intended to take a photo of the streets of Paris, but he accidentally captured two people in it as well.
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If you are wondering why there were only two people on the street and no other humans, carriages or animals were present, the answer is simple. Photographs back then were taken with a 10-minute-long exposure time, which was the minimum needed to take a shot with the technological methods of the time.
This is why the only two people captured in the oldest Paris photo are a shoe-shiner and his client who stayed longer than 10 minutes and reserved a place for themselves in history as the world’s first people to be photographed.