The Telegraph: The First Internet

The Telegraph: The First Internet

By: Alex Lopez

Imagine a world where there is no communication between continents that is faster than a few months. The only method of communication is the post office. This was the world in 1844. But it was about to change. A man named Samuel Morse patented the telegraph, and the code used with it, the Morse code. For the first time ever, you could talk to a friend easily, even if they were in in a different state, country, or continent.

The telegraph was one of the first widely used forms of communication, invented by Samuel Morse. It also enabled quick communication between the different continents. The telegraph used an electric signal to type out Morse code, and a language of dots and dashes, which was also invented by Morse. Samuel Morse actually sent the first telegraph, which read “What hath god wrought?”

After the telegraph was invented, there was huge growth for the United States and the world itself. Since the telegraph allowed for faster communication, it was easier for stores to communicate with each other. This helped grow efficiency in the economy. The telegraph also helped commanders communicate with troops on the front lines. Finally, it helped those troops talk to their families, which increased morale.

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The Zimmerman telegram (decoded)

The telegraph relates to engineering because it was designed and built for the purpose of communication, and it turned out successful. Engineers need to use communication in order to share ideas and collaboratively create new things. The telegraph lead to many inventions because of the power of communication. It even led the United States to join World War I because of the Zimmerman telegram.

An old version of the telegraph

The telegraph works like this: it is an electrical circuit with two wires and an electromagnet. As the sender transmits a message, there is a connection between two contact points, sending an electrical signal. This signal is provided by a battery within the mechanism. When the current is active for longer, the other end creates a dash, or if it is shorter, it creates a dot. Interestingly, Andrew Carnegie, a famous millionaire and monopolist from the 1920’s, learned Morse code by ear.

Andrew Carnegie

In conclusion, the telegraph benefited the world economy in several ways. It created efficiency, created worldwide communication, and caused the United States to enter World War One. This invention ushered in a new era of communication. It helped the world move to the telephone, email, and even modern electronics.

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