This Week in History
'M. Watson, come here, I want you!'
This story was initially published in 2000
On March 10, 1876, the first intelligible sentence transmitted by telephone was spoken. This marked a high point in Alexander Graham Bell's career as an inventor.
Bell followed his parents to Canada, settling in Brantford, Ontario, in 1870. A year later, he took a position at the Sarah Fuller School in Boston. After working there and at other schools for deaf people, he founded a school of Vocal Physiology in 1873. He aimed to help deaf people learn to speak so they could function in "normal" society. The fathers of some of his students heard of Bell's experiments with the "vocal telegraph" and offered to sponsor him. With this funding, he hired an assistant, Thomas A. Watson. They came up with many inventions during this time, including types of hearing aids and devices to record sound waves.
In 1877, Bell married Mabel Hubbard, the daughter of one of his sponsors and a former student. In the following decades, Bell was able, with his patent money, to become involved in creating flying machines, hydrofoils, and continuing work with the deaf. He died at his summer home, Beinn Bhreagh ("Beautiful Mountain"), near Baddeck, Nova Scotia, in 1922.
The Bell Homestead, in Brantford, Ontario, where many of Bell's experiments took shape, is a National Historic Site. The Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site in Baddeck, Nova Scotia, houses a museum with artefacts relating to Bell's career and achievements.
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