Alexander Graham Bell Biography
The person responsible for changing the face of communication in the world was Alexander Graham Bell. And, this is a brief overview of his life and work. This famous inventor was Scottish by birth, with his birth taking place in Edinburgh on 3 March 1847. His parents Alexander Melville was considered to be an expert in elocution as well as mechanics of voice. Even though his mother, Eliza, had a hearing problem, she ended being a pianist of some acclaim. Bell was the second of three sons.
Initially, till the age of 10, Bell was home schooled by his mother. Even as a small boy, he was always interested in science and using it to resolve issues. He invented a special machine to dehusk grains for a mill operator after the operator challenged him to.
He finished his university education from the University of Edinburgh as well as the University College based in London. Thereafter, he became an assistant to his father. He helped to teach hearing impaired people to speak using the methods devised by his father.
Unfortunately, Bell’s two brothers succumbed to tuberculosis when they were in their teens and this prompted his parents to look for a place that had a warmer climate, as they were worried about their third son. So, the family relocated to Ontario in Canada. From here, Bell shifted to Boston in the US to become a teacher at the Sarah Fuller’s School for the deaf. He also began teaching as a private tutor and one of his students was a small girl named Helen Keller. Although Bell went on to invent many other things, his passion for teaching hearing impaired people never died till the very end. He was instrumental in establishing the American chapter of the association that took up the responsibility of teaching hearing impaired people how to speak using visible speech methods.
Bell was also instrumental in inventing the telephone, though there is some controversy over who the real inventor was. While Bell was conducting experiments on how to send voice using water transmission, there were others inventors too conducting similar experiments. The day that Bell filed a patent for the invention, the same day another inventor named Elisha Gray filed a caveat for the same invention. Since Bell had filed for patent, he was given it and was named the inventor of the device. After getting the patent, Bell still continued working on the telephone to improve its quality. While many looked at the device with scorn, it ended up becoming quite popular after the emperor of Brazil ordered 100 telephones during the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition in 1876.
Initially telegraph cables were used to speak and with the invention of a switch board, the telephone was initially used as a burglar alarm. However, Bell founded his company called the Bell Telephone Company to ensure that telephones would be available commercially for people to use in their homes and offices. The Bell Telephone Company would go on to set up the first long distance telephone cable, so that New York and Boston were connected.
In addition, Bell worked on several other inventions, such as the photophone, audiometer and induction balance. He was also interested in dispersing information, so founded a magazine called the Science. He even became the president of the National Geographic Society and was instrumental in the success of the society. He joined the Smithsonian Institution’s governing board and was responsible for bringing back the remains of the founder to the US. He got extremely interested in flying machines and helped a fellow scientist named Samuel Langley to further his invention of a flying kite that could carry a man.
On 9 August 1922, Alexander Graham Bell passed away in his family estate in Nova Scotia located in Canada.
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