The Pluck Heard 'Round the World

Alexander Graham Bell was able to invent the telephone after Watson tweaked a reed that transmitted sounds to the next room

On a hot day in June 1875, 28-year-old Alexander Graham Bell and his assistant, Thomas Watson, were toiling in adjacent workshops at 109 Court Street in Boston. Under sloped attic walls of rough-sawn wood, the two men hunched over benches covered with curled wires and jar-shaped batteries filled with acid. A few years before, an inventor named Joseph Stearns had made a fortune selling Western Union a device capable of sending two telegraphs simultaneously over one wire.Read more »