Pretty Young Woman from Charlottesville (Virginia) by W. A. Retzer, ca. 1840s
The velvet pad reads: “W. A. RETZER DAGUERREOTYPIST CHARLOTTESVILLE.” Consulting the excellent resource Craig’s Daguerreian Registry by John Craig, we found a ‘W. A. Retzer’ from Philadelphia with the latest mention of him in 1845. Well, we now know where he moved his business to. John also has a listing for “Retzger” (with a ‘g’ inserted in the name) in Richmond in partnership with Van Loan (also from Philadelphia) and also in Charlottesville, but we’re assuming it’s referring to ‘W.A. Retzer’ and that the ‘g’ should be dropped.
Note the finely embroidered belt around her tiny waist, and the fine embroidery on her bow. She appears to be wearing a daguerreotype brooch. We cannot see a face, but it appears there’s a reflection in there.
source: Genest on Ebay