Use of the telegraph was quickly accepted by people eager for a faster and easier way of sending and receiving information. However, widespread and successful use of the device required a unified system of telegraph stations among which information could be transmitted. The Western Union Telegraphy Company, founded in part by Cornell, was at first only one of many such companies that developed around the new medium during the 1850s. By 1861, however, Western Union had laid the first transcontinental telegraph line, making it the first nationwide telegraph company. Telegraph systems spread across the world, as well. Extensive systems appeared across Europe by the later part of the 19th century, and by 1866 the first permanent telegraph cable had been successfully laid across the Atlantic Ocean; there were 40 such telegraph lines across the Atlantic by 1940. The electric telegraph transformed how wars were fought and won and how journalists and newspapers conducted business. Rather than taking weeks to be delivered by horse-and-carriage mail carts, pieces of news could be exchanged between telegraph stations almost instantly. The telegraph also had a profound economic effect, allowing money to be “wired” across great distances. Even by the end of the 19th century, however, new technologies began to emerge, many of them based on the same principles first developed for the telegraph system. In time, these new technologies would overshadow the telegraph, which would fall out of regular widespread usage. Although the telegraph has since been replaced by the even more convenient telephone, fax machine and Internet, its invention stands as a turning point in world history. Samuel Morse died in New York City at the age of 80 on April 2, 1872. Source: Live Reflection: At one time, the United States had a single party system. Roads were not a main system of transportation in America, but rather canals and river systems. The telegraph used Morse code, both developed by Samuel B. Morse in the 1930s, to communicate.
- Fall '15
- Mr. Hilits
- telegraph, Electrical telegraph, electric telegraph, Samuel F. B. Morse