Taking a 20-minute long daguerreotype image using a 13-inch reflecting telescope made the image at the top of this post possible.
It is the first image of the Moon , and it was taken on March 23, 1840, now 180 years ago.
The first unsuccessful attempt: one year before
The first successful photograph of an astronomical object was accomplished by John William Draper , a New York University chemistry professor, physician, and scientific experimenter.
The first known attempt at astronomical photography was that of the Frenchman Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre , inventor of the daguerreotype process that bears his name, a year earlier, but it was not successful: tracking errors when guiding the telescope during long exposure meant that the photograph came out as a blurry spot.
In 1843, Draper made daguerreotypes of the solar spectrum that revealed new infrared and ultraviolet lines.
Draper’s name will also always be linked mainly to his classic work entitled History of the conflicts between Religion and Science (1875). This work, considered anti-Catholic, was refuted in Europe by a small group of ecclesiastical scholars , such as the Spanish religious Tomás de la Cámara, bishop of Salamanca, in his work Contestation to the History of the conflict between religion and science by Juan Guillermo Draper