March 10: “Mr. Watson, Come Here”

On this day in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell made the first successful telephone call when he phoned his assistant, Mr. Watson. Two years later Thomas Edison improved the telephone by inventing a microphone capable of creating a signal strong enough to make long-distance calls practical. Enjoy this collection of resources related to Mr. Bell, Mr. Edison, and early telegraph and telephone technology.

Invention of the Telephone Banner

Use your smart phone to share this banner celebrating the very first phone call.

Telephone Building

Interior view of a telephone company building from 1921. Notice the switchboard operators necessary to connect calls.

Carbon Microphone

Edison’s carbon microphone that enabled long-distance calls.

Edison Home and Lab

Photographs from the Edison home and laboratory in Ft. Myers, Florida.

Thomas Alva Edison

Portrait of Thomas Alva Edison from the ClipArt ETC website.