The First Picture Show — A Collection of the Earliest Wartime Newsreels


Military History Now

When America went to war with Mexico in 1846, correspondents from the nascent American news media, dubbed the penny press at the time for the one-cent dailies they printed, marched off with the army. Embedded with the newsmen was a lone practitioner of the then nearly unheard of art and science of photography. Using his crude and cumbersome camera, this first photo journalist captured everything from portraits of the American commanders and still life shots of ordinary Mexicans, to grainy images of the U.S. cavalry on parade and even conditions in a field hospital. While the name of the photographer in question has been lost to history, his pictures, which were rendered chemically onto glass plates known as daguerreotypes, represent the first ever photographs of an army at war. Later photographers would immortalize moments from subsequent conflicts like the Crimean War, the American Civil War, and the Franco Prussian…

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By heathenramblings Posted in Personal

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