From the Transatlantic Telephone to the iPhone

The real origins of the iPhone’s power stems from the pioneering efforts of communication innovators that preceded the AT&T engineers of the 1920s.

The story of wired long-distance communication really begins with the Western Union post-diggers who laid the first American transcontinental telegraph in 1861 and the Atlantic Telegraph Company that dropped the first transatlantic telegraph cable into the Atlantic Ocean in 1858. Watch this video to learn more about the history of the telephone.

Written by Bart Elmore. Narration by Dr. Nicholas B. Breyfogle. 

Video production by Laura Seeger and Dr. Nicholas B. Breyfogle. Video Production Assistance by Kristin Osborne. Audio production by Paul Kotheimer, College of Arts & Sciences Academic Technology Services. The Origins' editorial team includes Editors Nicholas Breyfogle, Steven Conn and David Steigerwald; Managing Editors Lauren Henry, Sarah Paxton and Brionna Mendoza; Associate Editor: Kristin Osborne

We thank the Stanton Foundation for their funding of this and other Origins projects.