Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Voices of People...Who Died Over 100 Years Ago

This is an amazing article!  Imagine being able to hear the actual recorded voices of people who died over a hundred years ago.  That is exactly what a cache of wax cylinders recorded by Thomas Edison and associates in the late 19th century enables us to do...thanks to some modern technology.

The voice of Otto Von Bismarck, who died in 1898.  The first known recording of work by Chopin.  Amazing!

Edison's wax cylinder on which he first recorded sound.  Later, he switched to
the flat disc because it was easier to reporduce copies using a mold.  That's how close
many of us came to being "cylinder jockeys" instead of "disk jockeys."

Now that the missing cylinders have been found, audio engineers used a much more modern device, the Archeophone, to read the squiggly indentations in Edison's wax recording medium without destroying them in the process.

It ain't hi-fi, but it is recorded history.

Don Keith N4KC

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