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Original Electrograph, Pan-American Exposition 1901 | by AtypicalArt
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Original Electrograph, Pan-American Exposition 1901

Here is what can be considered a rare photographic oddity, an original "electrograph" image from the 1901 Pan-American Exposition which was held in Buffalo, NY, May 1-Nov 2, 1901. This image was created using a device called the "Electrograph" invented by H. R. Palmer and Thomas Mills from Cleveland, Ohio. According to an ink stamp on the verso, this image was "taken from the receiving machine at the Pan-American Exposition, after having been transmitted eight hundred miles over telegraph resistance." The company name is given as the international Electro-Graph Co., 428 Permanent Building, Cleveland, Ohio.

 

I image these images were handed out to prospective clients as a souvenir or advertisement, most likely newspapers looking for a better way to transmit images. I have located several period journal articles (thank you Google Books) which talk about this "most important development in technology". I would think that not many of these images have survived over the years, thus I was happy to find this one while digging through a box of old papers in Ohio a few years ago. I do not have any information regarding the identity of the man pictured.

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Taken on August 23, 2012