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The Strange Birth of Television

2006-07-09 16:02

  It was 1922, in the USA. One day, the science teacher, Justin Tolman found a boy making drawings on the chalkboard. At that time even a radio was new. Yet a boy of 16 showed his teacher drawings for television. The boy was just Philo Farnsworth who later became the inventor of the TV.

  Tolman became the only man who could understand what Philo had done. However at the end of the school year, the Farnsworth family moved out of the little town of Rigby, Idaho, since then Philo had not seen Mr Tolman again for many years.

  In 1926 Philo worked as an office boy in Salt Lake City. One of the important businessmen, George Everson from San Francisco was interested in his idea for television. Taking Philo with him, Everson returned to San Francisco and gave him $ 25,000 to help him work on his idea.

  First of all Philo sent his drawings to Washington along with a letter asking for the patent rights on television. But he was not the only person interested in getting such a patent. A New York inventor named Zworykin was also working on television.

  The patent office asked Farnsworth and Zworykin to come to Washington for a hearing. The important question at the hearing would be very simple: Which man could prove that he had been the first to invent television.

  Farnsworth himself knew that he had started early in 1922, but he did not know where the eyewitness, his science teacher Tolman was. And so the search for Mr Tolman began. At last he found the science teacher teaching science in a school in Salt Lake City.

  At the hearing in Washington, Farnsworth's lawyer first proved that Philo had not seen or heard from his teacher for many years. Then he wanted Mr Tolman to tell about the invention Philo called television.

  So Mr Tolman stood up and went to the chalkboard. On it he put the same drawings that Philo had made on the chalkboard in the schoolroom at Rigby.

  Then Zworykin's lawyer asked Mr Tolman many questions about the drawings. Thanks to his fine memory, Mr Tolman answered all the questions the lawyer asked. So the patent rights to television were given to Philo Farnsworth at once.

  Since then, television has become an important electrical equipment all over the world. Fansworth's success came to him partly through his great genius and hard work, but party it came through the help of his two good friends.

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