Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Telephone

When it comes to the telephone, in 1831, the principles of electricity required to produce it, were around. Finally, in 1876 the telephone arrived. Electricity was the most current technology of the 1870’s. Similar to the present day internet, it drew in smart people like Alexander Graham Bell, who was just 29 years old, in 1876, when he invented the telephone. The United States passed a bill in 2002 saying Antonio Meucci invented the telephone. This was obviously quite a controversial issue.
Tom Farley's Telephone History Series
Inventing the Telephone
Invention of the telephone

“From its inception, Bell had shown no interest in developing telephones in rural areas, and though the independent telephone companies were more likely to serve rural needs, they were also ambivalent about a market that they viewed as likely to be unprofitable and vexatious.” Around 1912, 30% of farms had a telephone. Many of the farms in America were large and widely spread out. This huge distance between farms seemed to make the telephone more important to have. This way the farmers could get prices and order new supplies. The farmers also used the telephone to get the most recent weather reports. As a result out in the Midwest developed a bustling telephone service.

Paul Starr, The Creation of the Media, pgs. 201-203


At 4:53 PM, Blogger A. Mattson said...

Good links. What made rural telephone service a reality? The profit motive of the independents or the Bell companies? Ultimately federal regulation made universal service a reality.


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