On this date in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell conveyed the now-famous line ...

Telephone service ad with an illustration of a surprised looking woman holding a receiver and a smug looking guy hovering beside her

On this date, March 10, in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell conveyed the now-famous line "Mr. Watson - come here - I want to see you." to his assistant, Thomas Watson via a successful experiment in telephone technology. Documentation of the event was then recorded in a lab notebook he used during the 1875-1876 period. The notebook doesn't mention if he looked as smug while doing it as the man in this illustration, but I'm betting he did.

This July 1948 advertisement was for the Western Electric Company, an electrical engineering and manufacturing company founded in 1869. Western Electric joined the Bell System, a vertically organized network of companies led by the Bell Telephone Company, in 1882 as the system's primary equipment manufacturer, supplier, and purchasing agent.

This item is part of Hagley Library’s John Okolowicz collection of publications and advertising on radio and consumer electronics (Accession 2014.277), a collection of digital access copies of materials related to radios and similar household electronics dating from 1912 to 1980.

The collection includes industrial magazines, annual reports, trade catalogs, pamphlets, and coloring books representing fifteen radio and consumer electronic manufacturing companies, as well as advertising tear sheets from 150 regional, national, and international publications representing over 300 corporate advertisers.

You can visit this digital collection now by clicking here to visit the collection’s page in our Digital Archive.