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Alexander Graham Bell
1847 - 1922

Inventor of the Telephone, Teacher, Scientist, Physicist

Few inventions are as useful, even indispensable, as the telephone. To sense its essentiality, try living 24 hours without its convenience, security and necessity in time of emergency. ■ What would we do without this incredible gadget conceived and developed in the mind of the distinguished Scottish-American physicist and vocal physiologist Alexander Graham Bell?  How would you report disasters, fires, and crime? How would you summon a doctor for a sick child? ■ Alexander Graham Bell was born March 3, 1847, in Edinburgh. He was educated at Edinburgh University and the University of London. His grandfather was a distinguished authority in speech therapy, and his father was an early teacher of phonetics and linguistics in Scotland, England and the United States. ■ Bell and his father moved to Canada in 1870. Two years later at the age of 25 Alexander Graham Bell opened a school in Boston for the training of teachers of the deaf. Courses included instruction in the mechanics of speech. A year later he became a professor of vocal physiology at Boston University. ■ In 1876, Bell exhibited an apparatus embodying the results of his studies of the transmission of sound by electricity. This invention, with improvements and modifications, constitutes the modern telephone. ■ Bell also was the inventor of the photophone, an instrument for transmitting sound with vibrations in a beam of light. He also contributed to the development of the modern phonograph. ■ Later he did research involving the principles of flight and aeronautics. He published many scientific papers and was appointed a regent of the Smithsonian Institution by Congress in 1898. He also served as president of the National Geographic Society.

Wayne Rethford, President Emeritus
Illinois Saint Andrew Society
Scottish-American History Club
2800 Des Plaines Avenue
North Riverside, IL 60546