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Radio Innovator Guglielmo Marconi

Italian scientist and engineer Guglielmo Marconi received the first long-distance radio transmission in St. John’s, Newfoundland, on December 12, 1901. Electrical engineer John Ambrose Fleming transmitted the Morse code signal for ‘s’ from across the Atlantic Ocean in England and Marconi heard it–three short clicks–through a radio speaker. Marconi had begun experimenting with radiotelegraphy around 1895, and he realized that messages could be transmitted over much greater distances by using grounded antennae on the radio transmitter and receiver. A few years after the successful transmission with Fleming, Marconi opened the first commercial wireless telegraph service.

Photo: Library of Congress