The Father of Radio Communications

Day 26 of Colourisation Project – June 2

On this day in 1896, Italian physicist, inventor and politician, Guglielmo Marconi was granted the world’s first patent for a system of wireless telegraphy, the precursor to the radio.

Born in Bologna, Italy, Guglielmo Marconi was considered one of the founding fathers of radio communication. However the Italian government showed little interest in Marconi’s early work in electromagnetic waves.  Marconi sought support in England where, by 1897 he formed The Wireless Telegraph & Signal Company Limited (later re-named Marconi’s Wireless Telegraph Company Limited in 1900).

By 1902 Marconi had demonstrated that wireless communication (without use of cables) was possible across the Atlantic Ocean, a distance of 2100 miles. His work in this field of wireless led to Marconi being awarded the Nobel Prize for physics in 1909.

Marconi was instrumental in the start-up of public radio broadcasting and helped establish the British Broadcasting Company formed in 1922, later the British Broadcasting Corporation or as we now know it…the BBC.

In 1977, Marconi was inducted into the National Broadcasters Hall of Fame. A statue of Marconi stands in Church Square Park in Hoboken, NJ and sculpture devoted to Marconi stands in Washington, D.C.

Marconi died in Rome on July 20, 1937. The Italian Government held a state funeral for him and as a tribute all radio stations throughout the world observed two minutes of silence on the next day.

Guglielmo Marconi

     Photographer unknown – 1902  –  Coloured by Loredana Crupi

“Every day sees humanity more victorious in the struggle with space and time.” Guglielmo Marconi

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