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First Telegraphic Message, 24 May 1844

Historic Message, 24 May 1844

This paper tape recording of the historic message transmitted by Samuel F. B. Morse reads when decoded, "What hath God wrought?" It was sent by him from the Supreme Court room in the Capitol to his assistant, Alfred Vail, in Baltimore. Morse's early system produced a paper copy with raised dots and dashes, which were translated later by an operator. Across the top of this historic achievement Morse has given credit to Annie Ellsworth, the young daughter of a good friend, for suggesting to him what message to send. She obtained it from the Bible, Numbers 23:23.

The Papers of Samuel Finley Breese Morse
Manuscript Division

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