Graham Bell Essay, Research Paper
Alexander Graham Bell
Alexander Graham Bell was born on March 3, 1847.
He was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, he was educated there
and at the University of London. He studied under his
grandfather, Alexander Bell, a well known speech teacher.
(Robert V. Bruce, Bell) His mother, Elisa Grace Symonds,
was a portrait painter and a musician. His father,
Alexander Melville, Bell, taught deaf-mutes to speak and
wrote textbooks on correct speech. He invented ?Visible
Speech,? a code of symbols that indicated position of the
throat, tongue, and lips in making sounds. (World Book
Bell and his brothers helped their father in
demonstrations of Visible Speech, Beginning in 1962. He
also became a student-teacher at West House, a boys school
in Edinburgh, where he taught music and speech for
instruction in other subjects. (World Book Enc. 1991) He
became a full-time teacher after studying for a year at the
University of Edinburgh. Then he studied at the University
of London. (A. G. Bell: Making Connections, 1996)
In 1866, he made experiments to find out how vowel
sounds are produced. He read a book on acoustics by a
German physicist Hermann von Helmholtz, he used notes of
electrically driven forks to make vowel sounds. That gave
him the idea of ?telegraphing? even though he had no idea
how to do it. (World Book Enc., 1991)
Bad things started to happen to the family.
Graham?s younger brother died of tuberculosis, and his
older brother died also by the same disease in 1870. The
doctor told his father that Graham was in danger too, but
his father gave up his job and moved to Brantford, Ontario,
Canada, where his father found a healthy climate for them.
He soon recovered in health. (Our Foreign Born Citizens,
In 1972, Bell opened a school for the teachers of
the death. The next year he became a professor at Boston
College. After a while of working on the phone without
much money, he got support in creating the telephone by an
attorney who he met by the man?s daughter who was left deaf
after getting the scarlet measles, his name was Gardiner
Green Hubbard. Graham married her four years later. The
man was a critic of The Western Union Telegraph Company.
When he found out what Graham was trying to do he helped
him.(Wires West, Phil Ault, 1974)
After a while of trying he found out that he didn?t
have enough training but he went to an electrical
instrument-making shop for help. Thomas A.Watson started
helping Bell. They became close friends. He helped
improve the telegraph before creating the telephone. He
developed the ?harmonic telegraph? which could send more
than one message at a time over a single telegraph wire.(
A. G. Bell: Making Connections, 1996) In 1875, he had
produced the first recognizable voice-like sounds.
In 1876, while testing, Graham spilled acid near
the telephone transmitter and called in the famous words
?Mr. Watson, come here; I want you? he forgot about it in
the excitement of the invention .
On his twenty-ninth birthday he received the patent
securing his rights as inventor of the telephone.(Our
Foreign Born Citizens, Annie E. S. Beard, 1955)
French government awarded Bell the Volta Prize of
50,000 francs in 1880 for the invention of the telephone.
The money was used to establish the Volta Laboratory for
research, invention, and work for the deaf. There he
developed the method of making phonograph records on wax
discs. In 1890, Bell founded and financed the American
Association to Promote the Teaching of Speech to the Deaf.
It is now called Alexander Graham Bell Association for the
Deaf). (World Book Enc., 1991)
He later experimented with a means to detect metal
in wounds. And with a vacuum-jacket respirator that led to
the making of the iron lung.(Robert V. Bruce, 1973) He
helped bring Thomas A. Edisons phonograph to commercial
practicality and started experimenting with hydrofoil boats
and airplanes. (Wires West, Phil Ault, 1974) He was so
interested in flying in his life, that he helped finance
American scientist Samuel P. Langley?s experiments with
heavier-than-air machines. He conducted a series of
experiments with kites capable of lifting a person into the
air. In 1907, he helped organize the Aerial Experiment
Association, which worked with advanced aviation. He also
contributed to the establishment of Science magazine and
helped organize the National Geographic Society. (Our
Foreign Born Citizens, Annie E.S. Beard, 1955)
He became a U.S. citizen in 1882, but spent most of
his life at his estate on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia.
He died August 2, 1922, at his house.
Alexander Graham Bell was very important to U.S. history
because he helped communications get easier. Alexander
Graham Bell was important to American history because he
allowed people from great distances to relay important
information to each other in actual time. This eliminated
many useless and otherwise time-consuming ways of
communication such as writing letters through the U.S. mail
and having to wait at least a month for a reply. He was
also an influence in the teaching of the hearing and
If it weren?t for the support of Bell in many of
the experiments of that time many inventions might have
never been made like the tests on aviation. If it weren?t
for his inventions life as we know it now may have never
existed. Imagine, we would have never been able to trade
effectively, and World War I we would know about it too
late to be able to do something about it. And then if we
did, during World War II, Hitler may have been able to take
over Europe without no one here knowing about it. Then by
the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor they might of
already been attacking without us being ready.
So if you think about it, if it weren?t for him the
world might of been ruled by Hitler or by a communist
leader. We may have never existed if it weren?t for him
but that is taking it a little to far. You can see that
one important thing leads to another important thing and if
something would happen the difference could be disastrous.
Computers, televisions, internet, home shopping, cell
phones, etc. Imagine, you wouldn?t be able to see movies,
would spend more time in going shopping, there would
probably be less things to buy, internet wouldn?t exist and
that is the connection to the world. Cell phone wouldn?t
exist of course, and quick calls to the house would not be
So, the reasons of his importance are impossible to
count because so many things that were effected because of
him. His life is full of creations and teaching the deaf.
He will forever be remebered.
The World Book Encyclopedia, World Book,Chicago IL,1991).
Phil Ault, Wires West: The Story of the Talking wires,
Odd, Mead & Company, NY, 1974)
Annie E. S. Beard, Our Foreign-Born Citizens, Thomas Y.
Crowell Company, NY, (1955)
Robert V. Bruce, Bell: Alexander Graham Bell and the
Conquest of solitude, (1973).
Naomi Pasachoff, Alexander Graham Bell: Making