Samuel Morse Invents the Telegraph

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Who is Samuel Morse?

Samuel Morse was born in Charlestown, Massachusetts, on April 27, 1791. He’s an American inventor and painter who studied art as a young man, attended Yale, and studied art in London.

After graduation and studying art, he tried to make money by selling his art, but unfortunately, he couldn’t make enough money.

After four years in London, Morse returned to the U.S., and the idea for the telegraph came to him on a steamship while talking to another passenger about electricity. Although Samuel Morse had studied art, he was also interested in electricity for a while, leading to the telegraph’s invention.

Story of the Telegraph

In 1832, Morse came up with the idea of an electric telegraph while returning from studying art in Europe. This happened when he heard a conversation about the newly discovered electromagnet, a type of magnet that produces a magnetic field by an electric current.

Morse made the first telegraph to transmit electric signals across a wire. With his first version of the telegraph, Morse could press a key that allowed an electrical pulse to be sent to a receiver.

The pulse could be interpreted like a code. The code, which Morse invented, was made of dots and dashes that represent the letters of the alphabet. This is now well-known as the Morse code.

Morse didn’t work on the telegraph alone. He was assisted by Alfred Vail and others, who helped him perfect the telegraph and the code.

In 1843, Morse and Vail received financial support from the U.S. Congress to set up the first telegraph line in the United States, between Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, Maryland.

On May 24, 1844, the system was completed and Morse sent Vail the historic first telegraphic message saying, “What hath God wrought!”

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