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Cobb Island in Charles County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Milestone in Radio History

Professor Frank Very

 
 
Milestone in Radio History Marker image. Click for full size.
National Park Service, Thomas Stone National Historic Site, January 22, 2019
1. Milestone in Radio History Marker
Inscription.  
On December 23, 1900, Reginald Fessenden made the first wireless transmission of human speech between two sets of 50-foot masts erected along the shore of Cobb Island. The message ("Hello. One, two, three, four. Is it snowing where you are Mr. Thiessen? If it is, telegraph back and let me know") was received here and was perfectly intelligible. Fessenden's and Very's helper, Alfred Thiessen immediately telegraphed back his response.

This site later became the permanent residence of Very who renamed it Villa Sans Souci as it remains today. Fessenden transmitted the historic message from Vickers' House, the large summer home of George Vickers that had been built after he acquired the entire island in 1889. Fessenden went on to pioneer many other innovations in radio technology.

[sidebars:]
Professor Frank Very, Fessenden's associate in development of the first wireless radio voice transmission apparatus.

Message telegraphed after successfully receiving Fessenden's voice transmission: — • — — • • • • (YES)

Twin antenna masts at Very Cottage, site of the historic first radio voice reception.
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Erected by Charles County Commissioners.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: CommunicationsScience & Medicine. A significant historical date for this entry is December 23, 1900.
 
Location. 38° 15.783′ N, 76° 50.567′ W. Marker is on Cobb Island, Maryland, in Charles County. Marker is at the intersection of Neale Sound Drive and Cypress Drive on Neale Sound Drive. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 12468 Neale Sound Dr, Cobb Island MD 20625, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A different marker also named Milestone in Radio History (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Milestone in Radio History (approx. 0.4 miles away); a different marker also named Milestone in Radio History (approx. half a mile away); Old Chapel Bell (approx. 4.2 miles away); Ways to Explore Southern Maryland's Scenic and Historic Routes (approx. 5.6 miles away); Discover Southern Maryland's Amazing Stories of Exploration, Hope, and Courage (approx. 5.6 miles away); Charlotte Hall School (approx. 5.6 miles away); St. Clement's Island Museum (approx. 5.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cobb Island.
 
Also see . . .
1. Vickers House, Maryland Inventory of Historic Properties. (Submitted on January 23, 2019, by David Lassman of Waldorf, Maryland.)
Milestone in Radio History Marker image. Click for full size.
National Park Service, Thomas Stone National Historic Site, January 22, 2019
2. Milestone in Radio History Marker

2. Reginald Fessenden. (Submitted on January 23, 2019, by David Lassman of Waldorf, Maryland.)
 
Milestone in Radio History Marker image. Click for full size.
National Park Service, Thomas Stone National Historic Site, January 22, 2019
3. Milestone in Radio History Marker
Cypress Drive road sign visible along left edge of image.
Welcome to Cobb Island sign image. Click for full size.
National Park Service, Thomas Stone National Historic Site, January 22, 2019
4. Welcome to Cobb Island sign
Located half a mile from the marker.
Frank W. Very (1852-1927) image. Click for full size.
(Public Domain) from Polular Astronomy vol. 36, pg. 391, 1928
5. Frank W. Very (1852-1927)
Reginald Fessenden (1866-1932) image. Click for full size.
(Public Domain) originally in Harper's Weekly Magazine February 1903, February 21, 1903
6. Reginald Fessenden (1866-1932)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 28, 2023. It was originally submitted on January 23, 2019. This page has been viewed 472 times since then and 72 times this year. Last updated on January 24, 2019. It was the Marker of the Week December 24, 2023. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 23, 2019.   5. submitted on December 24, 2023, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.   6. submitted on December 23, 2023, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 14, 2024