Unknown Morse: unrecognized painter, inventor of the telegraph, or a great adventurer?
• Unknown Morse: unrecognized painter, inventor of the telegraph, or a great adventurer?
Name Samuel Morse all know thanks to his most famous discovery - the famous alphabet, named after the inventor. However, few people know that Morse was also a painter, also the founder and president of the National Academy of drawing in New York. However, the aesthetic value of his works of art have expressed very mixed reviews, as well as scientists - about the significance of his inventions. Who he really was - an artist, inventor or talented adventurer?
S. Morse. Self, 1818. Fragment
Samuel Finley Breese Morse was born in America, a preacher's family. His first major work, Samuel created in 14 years - he then wrote a good family portrait, and a little later - the painting "The landing of the pilgrims," the arrival of the first settlers in America. This painting attracted the attention of well-known at the time of the artist B. Alston, who invited the young man to go with him to England to study painting. Samuel's parents did not approve of these activities, but the trip did not interfere. And in 1811, at age 20. Samuel Morse began to study painting at the Royal Academy.
S. Morse. The landing of the pilgrims
S. Morse. Left - * * Dying Hercules. Right - Court * Jupiter *
During his studies at the Academy of Morse created two major works - "Dying Hercules" (for her artist received a gold medal at the exhibition) and "Judgment of Jupiter." At 24, the young man returned to America a famous artist, but at home his paintings nobody bought, and he began to paint portraits to order. Angry they had a portrait of former US President John Adams, as well as portraits of the Marquis de Lafayette and the fifth US President James Monroe.
S. Morse. Portrait of James Monroe (left) and the Marquis de Lafayette
In New York, Morse founded the National Academy of drawing and became its president. At the same time he decided to improving their skills, and continued his studies in Europe. His painting lessons were so hard that no one could have predicted that he soon will dramatically different kind of activity. Morse later admitted: "I have spent my younger years just painting. But, as it turned out, could not forget struck me as a youth sentence, he heard lectures on the natural sciences: "If an electric current will meet a delay on its way, it will become visible." This idea was the first seed from which many years after the invention of the telegraph "grew in my head.
S. Morse. Gallery of the Louvre, 1831-32
The inventors of the telegraph had a few, and Morse was not a pioneer, in Russia the creator of a new type of communication was Schilling, Germany - Gauss and Weber, England - Cook and Wheatstone. But they were electromagnetic devices such as the switch, and Morse invented the telegraph electromechanical. He received a patent for his invention, and showed his work at New York University. However, pundits not only appreciated his discovery, but also called Morse adventurer: the fact that he in fact did not invent anything, but simply combined several of successful inventions of their predecessors. But Morse himself was convinced that the careful application of the current is not as important as the introduction of something new.
S. Morse. Left - Muse (portrait of Susan's eldest daughter). Right - a self-portrait
Morse revolutionary invention was not due to data transmission technology, and the method of fixation and scope. In this case, Morse did not understand, not only in the recent discoveries in the field of electricity, but even in its basic rules and laws. He did not have any special knowledge or training, but they were replaced by the tenacity and dedication.
S. Morse. Portraits Samuel Nelson and Katherine Anne Russell Nelson, 1822
Telegraphs with magnetic arrows existed before the code, but they are inconvenient to use. And he decided to replace the arrow on the recorder, locking the received message on the device is pulled through the paper tape. Considerable assistance in the invention has Alfred Vail, who, unlike Morse had a technical education: he invented the scheme of the printing telegraph and perfected the telegraph code. The result was a well-known Morse code is a combination of short and long signals recorded on the tape in the form of dots and dashes.
S. Morse. Niagara 1835Clava, wealth and recognition came to him only in his old age. Scientific and practical value of his inventions were forced to recognize many, even those who insisted on the secondary of these discoveries. After the death of Morse in 1872 his fame as the inventor has faded, but about him again talked about as a distinctive portrait painter. These disputes continue to this day.
The well-known American artist and inventor Samuel Morse