Monday, May 16, 2016

Morse's telegraph message went over the Thomas Viaduct

On May 24, 1844 Samuel F. B. Morse (1791-1872) sent the message "What hath God wrought?" from the Supreme Court chambers in the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. to Baltimore's B&O train station.  Congress had appropriated money to run a line from DC to Baltimore along the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad tracks, thus going over the amazing Thomas Viaduct with its two tracks and a walkway.  More on the viaduct HERE .  Although not the first person to invent the electric telegraph, nor was it his first message, the line became famous, as did Morse and Morse Code.

The photograph by Matthew Brady taken about 1850 shows Morse with his telegraph machine.
The Thomas Viaduct viewed from Howard County over the Patapsco River towards Relay in Baltimore County around 1892.  Both photos are from the Library of Congress online.
Samuel Morse spent decades as a painter.  His self portrait from 1812 is in the National Portrait Gallery, DC.

©2016 Patricia Bixler Reber
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