Alexander Graham Bell and the First Telephone
On this day in 1876, inventor Alexander Graham Bell received a patent for the telephone. Credited with creating the first practical telephone, his invention would revolutionize the way people communicate for years to come.
Bell’s research on hearing and speech were profoundly influenced by his mother and wife, who were both deaf. This work led to his experimentation with hearing devices. He was inspired to improve upon the telegraph and sought to develop a mechanism to transmit sound along far distances telegraphically. With the assistance of Thomas A. Watson, Bell developed an acoustic telegraph that was capable of transmitting indistinct sounds.
In a controversial race to the patent office, Bell emerged victorious. On March 7, 1876, Bell was issued a patent that covered “the method of, and apparatus for, transmitting vocal or other sounds telegraphically…by causing electrical undulations, similar in form to the vibrations of the air accompanying the said vocal or other sound.”
Three days after his patent was issued, Bell succeeded in creating a working device. The first message ever carried on the telephone was from Bell to his assistant Watson – “Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you.” And with that, the first telephone was invented. Click on the image above to view Bell’s laboratory notebook entry describing his first successful experiment.
Click on the image above to view Alexander Graham Bell’s Improvement in Telegraphy patent!