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Welcome to Alec Bell's Own Website!

There would be no Internet without the invention of the telephone and transmission of data over wires.

So  it's appropriate that Alexander Graham Bell now has his own website!

Bell's telephone and many other contributions changed the world, so we thought we should provide detailed information about this extraordinary inventor.

In this site you will find lots of interesting information, like Bell's transmission of voice over light waves in 1880 using his "Photophone" -- the precursor of fiber optics, and the first wireless transmission of voice nearly two decades before radio.

And you will learn about inventions often ignored in other websites, like Bell's invention of the audiometer and patent for an early fax machine in 1875.  Original documents provide support for this important new research.


1881-The Metal Detector

The Bullet Probe

In 1881, Alexander Graham Bell invented the first metal detector, which he called "the bullet probe." As President James Garfield lay in critical condition with the bullet of an assasin lodged in his spine, Bell worked hurriedly to invent a metal detecting device. The hope was that Bell's invention would find the lost bullet so it could be removed, saving the president.

Unfortunately, Bell's device was unable to save Garfield, who passed away September 19, 1881. It is now commonly believed that the device would have found the bullet had it not been for the metal springs in the bed, which interfered in the process.


1919-Hydrofoil HD-4

The HD-4 hydrofoil.

The hydrofoil was a great interest and hobby of Bell’s in his later years.

With his chief engineer Casey Baldwin, Bell began hydrofoil experiments in the summer of 1908. They experimented with a number of designs, culminating in Bell's HD-4. Using Renault engines, a top speed of 54 mph was achieved, accelerating rapidly, taking waves easily, steering well and showing great stability. Bell's sent a report to the United States Navy, who permitted him to obtain two 260 kW (350 horsepower) engines. .

On September 9, 1919 the HD-4 set a world marine speed record of 70.86 mph, a record which stood unbroken for two decades. A full-scale replica of Bell's HD-4 is viewable at the Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site museum in Baddeck, Nova Scotia.


Did Bell Steal the Telephone?

Many controveries have surrounded Alexander Graham Bell since he patented the telephone, including the claim that he stole the telephone from Elisha Gray.thief

Two recent books have raised the question again, with Seth Shulman claiming in The Telephone Gambit  that he has found a "smoking gun" proving that Bell copied the idea for the liquid transmitter after he saw Gray's patent application.

An article in this website, "Did Bell Steal the Telephone From Gray?", provides important evidence that Shulman ignored, including the fact that Bell's patent for the fax machine granted ten months before included a liquid transmitter!


Bell's Favorite Poem

Inventing can be hard work.  Bell claimed he did over 1,000 experiments in aviation alone.

Mabel Bell made a copy of a poem and hung it on the wall of his laboratory.

If things seem a little blue,
Keep on fighting.
Stay it out and see it through,
Keep on fighting.


Other Than The Telephone, Which Was Bell's Most Important Invention?
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