ALEXANDER GRAHAM BELL
Alexander Graham Bell was born on March 3rd, 1847 in Scotland. Bell went to school in Edinburgh and London. His father worked as an elocutionist, and after finishing school, Bell also started researching the mechanics of speech. In 1870, Bell and his family moved to Canada. The next year Bell moved to the United States in order to teach, and he worked with deaf-mute children and pioneered a system called visible speech.
After a number of years of teaching, Bell was appointed professor of vocal physiology at Boston University in 1873. Whilst at the university he acted on his fascination with transmitting speech, and in 1875 he developed a receiver that could turn electricity into sound. Although there is a debate about who should be credited with the invention of the telephone as a number of people were working on similar devices at the same time, Bell’s telephone was granted a patent first, in 1876. From then on the telephone developed very quickly. His Bell Telephone Company was created in 1877 and it made Bell a wealthy man. As a result, many also remember him as one of the key inventors of the Industrial Revolution.
Bell was naturalized as an America citizen in 1882 and soon after, using money from his telephone company, Bell founded the Volta laboratory to enable the experiments in communication, and techniques for teaching speech to the deaf to continue. He worked with Helen Keller and other important teachers at the time. He was also interested in the field of aviation and in 1885 Bell bought land in Nova Scotia to allow him to experiment outside. Following this acquisition, Bell became more and more interested in geography and in 1888 he was one of the founding members of the National Geographic Society. Bell died in 1922 in Nova Scotia, Canada.