Hear Alexander Graham Bell speak


The voice you can hear above is Alexander Graham Bell, inventor of the telephone. Bell's voice, not likely heard anywhere since he died in 1922, was retrieved from a wax-and-cardboard disc recorded on April 15, 1885 and recently "played" for the first time in more than a century. That's the disc above, looking strangely similar to a CD. The recording was identified and digitized by a team including researchers from the National Museum of American History, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the Library of Congress. In the clip above, Bell says "Hear my voice, Alexander Graham Bell." You can listen to nearly five minutes more of the recording session below. (via Smithosnian and The Atlantic)


  1. Sigh. Wish they’d let us download this transcription; I’d love to throw a bit of pro-level noise reduction at it and see what can be done to improve intelligibility.

  2. Entertaining how careful he is to annunciate every syllable and provide a little space between words. I suspect he knew the resolution of the recording medium was a bit crappy and was trying to ensure the results would be audible down the road. 

  3. So, Alexander Graham Bell was the victorian mad genius version of the Sesame Street Count? “Bwah, ah, ah, ah!”

  4. “The voice you can hear above is Alexander Graham Bell, one of the inventors of the telephone”


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