Alexander Graham Bell is the inventor of the first practical telephone. His notebook entry dated March 10, 1876, describes his successful experiment with the telephone. Bell uttered the famous words, “Mr. Watson – come here – I want to see you.” to his assistant, Thomas A. Watson, in the next room through his telephone instrument.
Bell’s father, grandfather, and brother had all been associated with work on elocution and speech, and both his mother and wife were deaf. This influenced Bell to study acoustics. He was a professor of Vocal Physiology and Elocution at the Boston University School of Oratory but his inclination towards experimentation led him to give up his lucrative job and focus on his area of interest.
The telegraph and telephone are both wire-based electrical systems, and Alexander Graham Bell’s invention of the telephone is a result of his attempts to improve the telegraph. The telegraph could send or receive only message at a time. Bell’s extensive knowledge of the nature of sound and his understanding of music made him work on the possibility of transmitting multiple messages over the same wire at the same time. His ‘harmonic telegraph’ was based on the principle that several messages could be sent simultaneously along the same wire if the messages differed in pitch. Bell also went further and experimented with transmitting speech instead of just dot-and-dash Morse code, electrically.
Bell worked with Thomas Watson, a young electrician to develop such a device. Finally, Bell was successful in his endeavor and he received the first official patent for his telephone in March 1876. This marked the birth of the first telephone.