Carte de Visite

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In 1854 André-Adolphe-Eugène Disdéri successfully claimed for himself the rights on the invention of making several exposures on one light sensitive glass plate. He got a patent on that invention. He found out that 8 exposures on one plate were fine to make handy but not too little contact prints of the pictures. The prints could be made as contact prints of all 8 images at once on a large sheet of albumen photo paper. After development and drying the sheet was dissected into the 8 pictures, and each picture was glued upon a 2½×4 inch piece of white cardboard. This photo card size was called Carte de Visite, C.D.V. or CDV and became popular all over the world. Families which were widely spread over the globe because of colonization of far countries by old Europe or because of emigration from old Europe could exchange such photos by mail, knowing that the images would fit in the CDV albums of the relatives. The CDV cards were an important step towards standardization in the photography business.

Disdéri developed a special camera type with four lenses and shiftable back for CDV photography. He and his wife Genevieve-Elisabeth Disdéri were among the famous early CDV photographers of whom images were preserved until today.

In the 1860s the larger Cabinet Cards succeeded the CDVs.