Jeremiah Gurney opened a daguerreotype gallery in New York City in 1840 and continually exhibited his work in local fairs for the next decade. In 1851 he exhibited at the international exhibition at the Crystal Palace in London.
After owning a succession of galleries in Brooklyn, Gurney settled into a gallery at 349 Broadway in Manhattan, where he remained for more than a dozen years. Gurney's Daguerreian Gallery was a celebrated success, featuring "reception saloons," or galleries, with portraits of "Distinguished Persons of the Age" that had been photographed at the studio. Keeping up with new developments in photography, he began to use paper processes almost exclusively around 1853. Gurney was briefly associated with several partnerships in New York, including one with his son Benjamin from 1860 until 1874.