Baltimore-Washington telegraph line

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The Baltimore-Washington Telegraph Line was the first long-distance telegraph system set up to run overland in the United States, the intention being to utilize the telegraph code system - Morse Code - invented by Samuel Morse. Along with similar transmission networks in Europe, it was a precursor to transatlantic telegraphic communications and later technologies such as telephone, fax and email.

In 1843 the United States Congress appropriated $30,000 to Samuel Morse in order to lay a telegraph line from Washington, D.C. to Baltimore, Maryland. The company's first experimental line was demonstrated on May 24, 1844 and commenced with the transmission of Morse's first message, "What hath God wrought!", a phrase from the Bible's Book of Numbers. The phrase was suggested by Annie Ellsworth, whose husband was a supporter of Morse's.

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