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12 Historic 'Firsts' of Photography

 Since it was originally invented in the early 18th Century, photography has been a medium of limitless possibilities. Using cameras has allowed us to capture and broadcast key moments of history, changing the way many people perceive themselves and the world around them. In celebration of the incredible history of photography, here are 12 outstanding photographic 'firsts' that span the last couple of centuries.
1. The First Photo Ever Taken
In 1826, Joseph Nicéphore Niépce snapped the world's very first photograph ever. The photo above was taken from the window of one of the upper rooms of Niépce’s home in Burgundy, France. A process called heliography was used to capture this image, which required a piece of metal or glass to be coated with Bitumen of Judea, which would then harden in proportion to the quantity of light it was exposed to.
2. The First Photo of a Person
The first time a human being appeared in a photograph was in Louis Daguerre's above snapshot.  Daguerre's aim was to capture the Parisian thoroughfare known as Boulevard du Temple, and its exposure time was around seven minutes long. Due to such a relatively lengthy process, most people who walked along the thoroughfare left no impression on the photo whatsoever. However, in the photo's lower-left corner you can clearly see a man getting his shoes shined.
3. The First Presidential Photograph
The first president to ever have his photo taken was the 6th President of the United States, John Quincy Adams. The type of photo produced is known as a daguerreotype, and was taken in 1843, a good 14 years after Adams retired from office. The first US president to have his photo taken whilst in office was the 11th President, James Polk, in 1849.
4. The First Photo of a Fatal Airplane Accident
This 1908 photgraph shows a plane crash that caused the death of the aviator, Thomas Selfridge. The plane that crashed was a prototype that was designed by the US Army's Aerial Experimental Association. The airplane was also carrying another crew member, Orville Wright, who managed to survive the ordeal.
5. The Very First Aerial Photo
Forget about drones, the first aerial photo ever taken was shot from within a hot air balloon in 1860. In the photo above, you can see the way Boston looked from an altitude of 2,000 feet. James Wallace Black, the photographer, gave this photo the title, 'Boston, as the Eagle and the Wild Goose See It.'
6. The First News Photo
Using the same daguerreotype technique as President Adams' photo, this 1847 image of a wanted man being arrested in France is believed to be the first ever photograph to be used in a news report. Unfortunately, the photojournalist's identity has been lost to the passage of time, but his legacy lives on through this iconic photograph. 
7. The First Ever Digital Photo
Almost 20 years prior to Kodak developing the first digital camera, the oldest-known digital photograph was taken way back in 1957 by Russell A. Kirsch. It's a digital scan of a photo originally captured on film, and depicts Kirsch's own infant son. With a square resolution of 176×176, this photo seems worthy of any Facebook or Instagram profile.
8. The First Photo Taken from Space
The V-2 #13 rocket captured the first ever photo from space shortly after its launch on the 24th of October, 1946, and is a monochrome depiction of our planet from a 65-mile altitude. It was shot using a 35mm motion picture camera, which captured a frame every second and a half while the rocket was climbing up into the atmosphere.
9. The First Time Earth Was Photographed from the MoonOn August 23rd, 1966, our planet was photographed in its full glory from the moon! While a Lunar Orbiter was making its 16th orbit around our moon, it travelled close enough to snap a pretty decent shot, which was then forwarded to a deep space complex in Robledo de Chavela, Spain.
10. The Earliest Cape Canaveral Launch Photo
The first ever photo of a Cape Canaveral launch was taken in July of 1950 by a team of NASA photographers. Known as the 'Bumper 2,' the rocket being launched was a 2-stage rocket, made up of a WAC Corporal rocket with a V-2 missile base. What's fascinating about this photo is that you can clearly see many other photographers competing to get the best photo of this historical event.
11. The World's First Color Photo
The mathematical physicist, James Clerk Maxwell, was responsible for the development of the world's first color photograph. Maxwell first showed off his work at one of his lectures in 1861, which depicts a three-color decorative bow.
12. The Earliest Colored Landscape Photo
In 1877, sixteen years after the first color photo was developed, Louis Arthur Ducos du Hauron managed to develop an innovative process to capture color photos of the outside world. The first colored landscape shot ever taken depicts a picturesque village in the south of France, and is creatively titled, 'Landscape of Southern France.'
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