Monday, July 09, 2007

Samuel Morse..1791-1872...We have always known of his work with the telegraph, but he was quite an amazing artist as well.

Morse at the end of his life wearing his many medals
The Gallery of the Louvre 1832
John Adams 1816

House of Representatives 1822
Although we think of Morse mainly with the invention of the telegraph and what we call "Morse code" .....He was quite an accomplished artist who was not only successful in the United States, but in Europe as well.
By the 1830's his efforts became more involved in what would become the telegraph. He worked with Leonard Gale who was a friend of Joseph Henry who was an early supporter of Morse. His work with Alfred Vail who was there with money and ability brought the telegraph along at a good pace.
In fact Vail did a good deal of the work while Morse took all the credit. This was the later days of Morse but his work as an artist was his greatest moments of solo work.
It is hard to really give all the total credit to the telegraph to Morse, as those who worked with him did a great deal. But he was the one who had the dream mainly. So to the dreamer goes the prize!
But Morse did dabble in many different money making fields including photography. But today he best known for his work with the telegraph, but I kind of like to think of him as an artist of very good quality.
His paintings are in galleries all over the world. Perhaps one may say of his art, work and life what was said in the first official telegraph message sent in 1844 in the presence of Dolly Madison.."What hath God Wrought."....