Alexander Graham Bell & Brantford 

A picture of Alexander Graham Bell
"I wish to say, on behalf of the Bell Telephone Memorial Association, that I have great pleasure in presenting to His Excellency a silver telephone, and I hope that in using it he will remember that the telephone originated in Brantford and that the first transmission to a distance was made between Brantford and Paris."
A. G. Bell to the Duke of Devonshire, then Governor-General of Canada, at the unveiling of the Brantford Telephone Memorial, Wednesday, October 24, 1917
"Brantford is justified in calling herself "The Telephone City," because the Telephone originated there."
A. G. Bell to Mr. T. H. Preston of Brantford, March 1916
"Now it so happens that the Telephone was invented in Brantford, at Tutela Heights, during my visit to my father and mother in 1874."
A.G. Bell to W. F. Cockshutt of Brantford, March 16, 1904
"The conception of the Telephone took place during that summer visit to my father's residence in Brantford in 1874, and the apparatus was just as it was subsequently made, a one-membrane telephone on either end ... The experiment of August 10, 1876, made from Brantford to Paris, was the first transmission, the first clear, intelligible transmission of speech over the real line, that had ever been made."
A. G. Bell at Boston, Massachusetts, March 13, 1916

Invention of the Telephone - Synopsis of Events

At the time of the dedication of the Bell Telephone Memorial in Brantford, 1917, Alexander Graham Bell prepared a hand-written synopsis of telephone chronology for Catherine Mackenzie, biographer:

  • Summer 1874 - Brantford 
    Invention of the telephone at Tutela Heights.
  • June 1875 - Boston, Massachusetts
    First telephone constructed and speech and sound heard.
  • September 1875 - Brantford
    First draft of the telephone patent specifications prepared.
  • March 10, 1876 - Boston, Massachusetts
    Complete sentences first clearly understood by telephone.
  • June 25, 1876 - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    Telephone exhibited at the Centennial Exhibition.
  • July 7, 9, 12, 1876 - Boston, Massachusetts
    First attempts to transmit speech over telegraph lines.
  • August 1876 - Brantford
    First successful attempt to transmit speech over a telegraph line.
  • August 1876 - Brantford
    First public demonstration of ability to speak over a telegraph line.
  • August 1876 - Brantford
    First transmission of a number of voices simultaneously over a telegraph line.
  • October 9, 1876 - Boston, Massachusetts
    First conversation (speaking both ways) by telephone over telegraph line.
  • December 3, 1876 - Boston, Massachusetts
    First long-distance conversation over a telegraph line (143 miles).
  • February 12, 1877 - Salem, Massachusetts
    First newspaper dispatch sent by telephone.
  • April 4, 1877 - Boston, Massachusetts
    First telephone line opened.

Synopsis and quotes from the Bell Telephone Memorial and Bell Homestead - Souvenir of Brantford, the "Telephone City," by A. T. Whitaker, Hurley Printing Co., Ltd., Brantford, Ontario, circa 1944. An entire copy of the souvenir booklet is archived by the Corporation of the City of Brantford Records Department.

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