Tintype, the XIX century polaroid

The Wet-collodion process, also called the collodion process, was an early photographic technique invented by Englishman Frederick Scott Archer in 1851. Exposure, development and fixing had to be immediate because the collodion film became waterproof after drying and the reagent solutions could no longer penetrate it. 

The process was valued for the level of detail and clarity it allowed. Around 1854 James Ambrose Cutting created two variants of the wet plate process, commonly known as Ambrotype (collodion on glass) and Tintype (collodion on metal).

Ambrotypes and Tintypes, often found today in near original condition, were passed down as family heirlooms and valued for their time-tested archival stability.