Marcus A. Root's Death Career of the Man who was ruined by buying Jenny Lind tickets The death was announced of Marcus A. Root, who but a few years ago was a well known daguerreotyper of Philadelphia.Marcus Aurelius Root was born in Granville, OH, August 15, 1808.In the year 1838 he moved to Philadelphia and opened a school for penmanship at Eight and Arch Streets.Meeting with great success, he married Miss L. E. Kennedy, a pupil of the school and a daughter of Nath. Kennedy, a Presbyterian minister.Mr. Root became known as the author of "The M. A. Root System of Penmanship," his publication having a large scale.After having had his attention called in 1843 to daguerreotype portraits, which had just been invented, he adopted it as a business after giving up his school. He became so proficient that he was recognized as the leading daguerreotyper in the United States and was awarded medals at the first World's Fair in London, 1851 and a few years later at the Crystal Palace Exhibition in New York.The perfection to which Mr. Root brought daguerreotyping enabled him to accumulate money rapidly, $40,000 of which in 1859 he invested in the Mount Vernon Hotel at Cape May which was destroyed the same year, Mr. Root losing his entire investment.During the excitement of the introduction of Jenny Lind to the public as a concert singer by P. T. Barnum in 1851, Mr. Root paid $600 at a public auction for the first choice seats.This caused the people to look with disfavor upon his judgment, and to it is attributed his failure in business.At the Centennial Exhibition of 1876, he exhibited a collection of tin types of the most prominent people, taken by the daguerreotype process, which he afterwards presented to the Historical Society.The portraits of Henry Clay and Daniel Webster on the United States currency were taken from daguerreotypes made by Mr. Root.From the result of a railroad accident in OH in 1856, Mr. Root was compelled to retire from business in that year.His wife, one daughter and six sons survive him.All his children are married.The Sunday Item.
In the 1880 PA Census, Mr. Root is listed as a retired artist.
The obituary did not describe his ancestors, however, he is related to numerous Revolutionary War figures.