Telegraph Register

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Description (Brief)
L. G. Tillotson and Company of New York made this telegraph register but the incomplete tape reel holder may have been added by the users in the University of Virginia's Physics Department. Telegraph registers are electrically-activated printers that receive Morse code messages. The message travels as a series of electrical pulses through a wire. The pulses energize the register’s electromagnets which move a lever-arm holding a pen or stylus. A clockwork mechanism pulls a strip of paper across the pen or stylus, recording the message. Short pulses draw or emboss a dot, slightly longer pulses a dash. The sequence of dots and dashes represent letters and numbers.
Currently not on view
L. G. Tillotson & Co.
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
brass (overall material)
copper (overall material)
overall: 14 in x 24 in x 8 in; 35.56 cm x 60.96 cm x 20.32 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
collector/donor number
Credit Line
from the University of Virginia, Department of Physics
Communication, telegraph
See more items in
Work and Industry: Electricity
Telegraph Registers
Data Source
National Museum of American History