Telegraph Sounder

Description (Brief)
Telegraph sounders convert electrical pulses into audible sounds and are used to receive Morse code messages. The message travels as a series of electrical pulses through a wire. Short pulses make a dot, slightly longer pulses make a dash. The sequence of dots and dashes represent letters and numbers. The pulses energize the sounder’s electromagnets which move a lever-arm. The arm makes a loud “click” when it strikes a crossbar and the operator translates the pattern of sounds into the original language. This sounder is one of the few units in the collection not made in America, having been made by the Automatic Telephone Manufacturing Company of Liverpool, England.
Currently not on view
Automatic Telephone Manufacturing Co.
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
brass (overall material)
rubber (overall material)
overall: 4 3/4 in x 3 3/8 in x 5 1/4 in; 12.065 cm x 8.5725 cm x 13.335 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
collector/donor number
Credit Line
from Western Union Corporation
See more items in
Work and Industry: Electricity
Telegraph Sounders
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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