“What hath God wrought!” – Samuel Morse and the Telegraph

Morse sent the first message over this wire,
Morse sent the first message over this wire, "What hath God wrought!"

Thunder Bay – TECH – The speed of the Internet determines much of what we do today. Information, and the speed at how it gets to people is important.

It was on this day, January 6, 1838, that Samuel Morse, and inventor and portrait painter first showed off his newest invention.

Morse had developed the telegraph.

The telegraph uses electric impulses to transmit encoded messages over a wire. Morse’s invention would revolutionize long distance communication.

Morse also invented what became known as the Morse Code, using a series of dots and dashes represented letters and numbers.

Prior to the invention of the telegraph communication over long distances was by mail. For ships at sea it was either lights or flags.

Samuel Morse reportedly came up with his idea for the telegraph while on a ship traveling from Europe to the United States in 1832. Morse was inspired by Michael Faraday’s recently invented electromagnet.

Morse began to speculate about sending messages over a wire using electricity.

In 1843, Morse successfully lobbied Congress to include an appropriation of $30,000 to fund the creation of a telegraph line between Washington, DC, and Baltimore.

The first message sent over his new telegraph line? On May 24, 1844, Morse sent the first message, “What hath God wrought!”

Communication changed with that invention. The telegraph led to telegrams, and the age of rapid communication began.

Today, with our smartphones in hand, we demand information at our fingertips.


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