Horace Clark represented a New York district in Congress and went on to preside over the railway companies Western Union Telegraph and Union Trust. This carte-de-visite photograph was taken by the famous New York studio Gurney & Son. Jeremiah Gurney was a pioneer of commercial photography, starting a daguerreotype studio in the 1840s where he produced images of the highest quality—and eschewed the business of actors and politicians, hewing to a more traditional conception of portraiture. This image likely dates to later in Clark’s career, which coincides with both Gurney’s expansion to Gurney & Sons and Clark’s entry into a career considered sufficiently elite for the upscale photographer.
History, Art & Archives, U.S. House of Representatives, “Horace Clark Carte-de-visite,” https://history.house.gov/Collection/Listing/2009/2009-115-001/ (May 10, 2021)
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