Telegraph Register

Telegraph Register

<< >>
Usage conditions apply
Description (Brief)
This is a small telegraph register of that shows the harp design made by James Clark of Philadelphia. The electromagnets and embossing lever are included but there is no tape drive mechanism.
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
Object Name
telegraph receiver
telegraph register
Other Terms
telegraph register; Telegraphy
Clark, James J.
Physical Description
marble (overall material)
brass (overall material)
overall: 2 3/4 in x 2 1/2 in x 4 3/4 in; 6.985 cm x 6.35 cm x 12.065 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
from James Johnson Clark
Communication, telegraph
See more items in
Work and Industry: Electricity
Telegraph Registers
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.


Add a comment about this object