Bunnell "Weiny-Phillips" telegraph relay - repeater


Telegraph relays amplified electrical signals in a telegraph line. Telegraph messages traveled as a series of electrical pulses through a wire from a transmitter to a receiver. Short pulses made a dot, slightly longer pulses a dash. The pulses faded in strength as they traveled through the wire, to the point where the incoming signal was too weak to directly operate a receiving sounder or register. A relay detected a weak signal and used a battery to strengthen the signal so that the receiver would operate.

A plate on this Bunnell relay associates the unit with "Weiny-Phillips" U.S. patent 479178. However, that 19 July 1892 patent was issued solely to Roderick H. Weiny with no mention of Phillips. The relay differs in appearance from the unit depicted on the patent so perhaps Phillips modified Weiny's design.

Date Made: ca 1893

Maker: J. H. Bunnell & Co.

Location: Currently not on view

See more items in: Work and Industry: Electricity, Communications, Telegraph Relays & Repeaters


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: from Western Union Corporation

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: EM.331671Accession Number: 294351Catalog Number: 331671Collector/Donor Number: 12-05Patent Number: 479178

Object Name: relay repeatertelegraph relayOther Terms: telegraph relay; Telegraphy

Physical Description: wood (overall material)brass (overall material)steel (overall material)plastic (overall material)Measurements: overall: 4 1/2 in x 8 1/2 in x 4 5/8 in; 11.43 cm x 21.59 cm x 11.7475 cm

Guid: http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a5-2722-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa

Record Id: nmah_703473

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