Louis Ducos du Hauron

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Louis Ducos du Hauron (* Langon, 8 December 1837, + Agen, 31 August 1920 ) was the inventor of color photography. In his youth he had been so talented for sciences and music that his parents took him from school and hired house teachers for him. After school days he studied physics. He did exchange letters with the composer Camille Saint-Saens. He liked paintings, being especially interested in the interaction of light and colours.

Never having touched a photographic camera he presented his memorandum Etude des sensations lumineuses at the Société des Arts et Sciences d'Agen in 1859. Parisiens called him "le jeune savant du Midi". Ten years later, after lots of research and experiments he published the brochure les couleurs en photographie, solution du problème . Finally he had found a way to make persisting colour photographs.

In 1862 he proposed a color photo viewer for viewing 3-color shots based on three separate slides.

In 1869 he got a patent on some basic principles of color photography.

In 1895 he received a patent for a 3-layer color film plate, a principle developed for practical photography by Frederick E. Ives in 1916 and brought to commercial success by the British company Colour Snapshots in 1928.

In 1897 his first one-shot three-color camera was presented, the Chromographoscope.

In 1899 Ducos Du Hauron got a patent for a compact book-shaped one-shot 3-color camera. He produced and marketed it as Le Mélanochromoscope.