Monday, August 25, 2008

The Wireless Telephone

Mr W E Park, the enterprising manager of the Johannesburg branch of Messrs Fraser and Chalmers, Ltd, seldom returns from one of his periodical visits to Europe and the States without bringing something new in the mechanical engineering department of mining (says the "SA Mining Journal.")
On this occasion Mr Park has brought with him a De Forest wireless telephone of the type adopted by the American Navy. The advantages of the system are obvious; and it is probable that many of the mines in the outside districts of the Transvaal may find the idea of considerable utility to them. Another invention, for the first time introduced to the Rand by Mr Park, is an automatic recording telephone, which takes and keeps a record of all messages received. The utility of this idea is also plainly evident; and Mr Park is to be congratulated on his enterprise.

Eastern Province Herald August 20, 1908.
The American Scientist, Mr de Forrest, is endeavouring to establish a system of wireless telephony between Paris and New York, not telegraphy as previously stated. He had already obtained the use of the Eifel Tower for the purpose, and is now engaged on a tower in New York 680 feet high, as the American terminal.
Eastern Province Herald August 25, 1908.
Although the de Forest company eventually went bankrupt in 1912, nothing really significant came of their wireless telephone. It's amazing, though, when you think of how technology subsequently developed to such a degree that every Tom, Dick and Harry has a celphone today.

No comments: