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Power StrugglesScientific Authority and the Creation of Practical Electricity Before Edison$
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Michael Brian Schiffer

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780262195829

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262195829.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MIT PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mitpress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright The MIT Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MITSO for personal use.date: 27 June 2022

A Peculiar Calling

A Peculiar Calling

(p.91) 9 A Peculiar Calling
Power Struggles

Michael Brian Schiffer

The MIT Press

This chapter demonstrates how Samuel Morse, who was a professor of art and portrait painter, was successful in creating the first practically viable electromagnetic telegraph. It traverses the entire life journey of Morse from his humble beginnings and his search for his true calling to the development of his electromagnetic telegraph. Born to a pastor in Massachusetts, Morse entered Yale University, where he studied a number of subjects ranging from geometry to French. Finally, he began to study painting under Washington Allson, who took him to England. While travelling on a ship from Europe, Morse had a vision of the electromagnetic telegraph and in 1835 was able to create a miniature working of the telegraph. In October 1837, he filed his patent for the telegraph at the U.S. Patent Office.

Keywords:   Samuel Morse, electromagnetic telegraph, Yale University, Washington Allston, England, Europe, patent, U.S. Patent Office

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