Downtown in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Alexander Graham Bell
March 3, 1947
The Centennial of Dr. Bell's Birth
Erected 1947 by Alexander Graham Bell Chapter, Telephone Pioneers of America.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Communications • Science & Medicine.
Location. 38° 54.136′ N, 77° 1.765′ W. Marker is in Downtown in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker is at the intersection of 13th Street Northwest and K Street Northwest, on the right when traveling north on 13th Street Northwest. Located on the Franklin School Building, next to Franklin Square. Touch for map. Marker is at or near Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Franklin Square (here, next to this marker); The Leonard "Bud" Doggett House (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Messer Building (about 600 feet away); Asbury United Methodist Church (about 600 feet away); John Barry Memorial (about 700 feet away); "The First of Patriots - The Best of Men" (about 700 feet away); Josephine Butler (about 700 feet away); The Church of the Ascension and St. Agnes (about 800 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Downtown.
Also see . . . "On the Production and Reproduction of Sound by Light". Presentation describing the photophone given by Dr. Bell to American Association for the Advancement of Science, in Boston, August 27, 1880 (Submitted on April 2, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
1. 1947 Franklin School ceremony
“On March 3, 1947, the centenary of Alexander Graham Bell's birth, the Telephone Pioneers of America dedicated a historical marker on the side of one of the buildings, the Franklin School, which Bell and Sumner Tainter used for their first formal trial involving a considerable distance. Tainter
— Submitted September 21, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.
2. The Photophone
In December 1879, Alexander Graham Bell rented a house at 904 Fourteenth Street and a laboratory at 1325 L Street, N.W., in the Franklin School neighborhood. Here, with his assistant Charles Sumner Tainter, he conducted experiments in his laboratory on the photophone, an invention for transmission of sound by light waves. After his first success on February 19, 1880, he wrote to his father:
“I have heard articulate speech produced by sunlight! I have heard a ray of the sun laugh and cough and sing!...I have been able to hear a shadow, and I have even perceived by ear the passage of a cloud across the sun's disk. Can imagination picture what the future of this invention is to be!...We may talk by light to any visible distance without any conducting wire...In warfare the electric communications of an army could neither be cut nor tapped. On the ocean communication may be carried on...between vessels...and light-houses may be identified by the sound
— Submitted September 23, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.
Credits. This page was last revised on February 29, 2020. It was originally submitted on April 2, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,758 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on April 2, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. 3, 4. submitted on September 21, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. 5. submitted on October 28, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.