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Morse-Vail Telegraph Key

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Morse-Vail Telegraph Key

Morse-Vail Telegraph Key, 1844-1845

Photo courtesy of the National Museum of American History
This key, believed to be from the first American telegraph line, was built by Alfred Vail as an improvement on Samuel Morse’s original transmitter. Vail helped Morse develop a practical system for sending and receiving coded electrical signals over a wire, which was successfully demonstrated in 1844.

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