Semi-automatic Telegraph Key

Description (Brief)
Telegraph keys are electrical on-off switches used to send messages in Morse code. A semi-automatic telegraph key like this one allows an operator to send land-line and wireless (radio) telegraph messages at a much faster rate than with an ordinary key. The key automatically produces rapid morse code dots by using a weighted pendulum to quickly make and break contact in the electrical circuit. The operator still makes the dashes manually.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
bug
semi-automatic key
telegraph key
maker
Western Union Corporation
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
plastic (overall material)
cloth (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 3 3/8 in x 3 1/2 in x 8 in; 8.5725 cm x 8.89 cm x 20.32 cm
ID Number
EM*331994
serial number
3223
collector/donor number
72-23
accession number
294351
catalog number
331994
See more items in
Work and Industry: Electricity
Communications
Telegraph Keys
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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