Samuel F. B. Morse, His Letters and Journals eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 588 pages of information about Samuel F. B. Morse, His Letters and Journals.

Holland, which he had never visited before, interested him greatly, but he could not help saying:  “One feels in Holland like being in a ship, constantly liable to spring a leak.”

Hamburg he found more to his taste:—­

September 26. Hamburg, you may remember, was nearly destroyed by fire in 1842.  It is now almost rebuilt and in a most splendid style of architecture.  I am much prepossessed in its favor.  We have taken up our quarters at the Victoria Hotel, one of the splendid new hotels of the city.  I find the season so far advanced in these northern regions that I am thinking of giving up my journey farther north.  My matters in London will demand all my spare time.”

September 30. The windows of my hotel look out upon the Alster Basin, a beautiful sheet of water, three sides of which are surrounded with splendid houses.  Boats and swans are gliding over the glassy surface, giving, with the well-dressed promenaders along the shores, an air of gayety and liveliness to the scene.”

It will not be necessary to follow the traveller step by step during this visit to Europe.  He did not go to Sweden and Russia, as he had at first planned, for he learned that the Emperor of Russia was in the South, and that nothing could be accomplished in his absence.  He, therefore, returned to London from Hamburg.  He was respectfully received everywhere and his invention was recognized as being one of great merit and simplicity, but it takes time for anything new to make its way.  This is, perhaps, best summed up in the words of Charles T. Fleischmann, who at that time was agent of the United States Patent Office, and was travelling through Europe collecting information on agriculture, education, and the arts.  He was a good friend of Morse’s and an enthusiastic advocate of his invention.  He carried with him a complete telegraphic outfit and lost no opportunity to bring it to the notice of the different governments visited by him, and his official position gave him the entree everywhere.  Writing from Vienna on October 7, he says:—­

“There is no doubt Morse’s telegraph is the best of that description I have yet seen, but the difficulty of introducing it is in this circumstance, that every scientific man invents a similar thing and, without having the practical experience and practical arrangement which make Morse’s so preferable, they will experiment a few miles’ distance only, and no doubt it works; but, when they come to put it up at a great distance, then they will find that their experience is not sufficient, and must come back ultimately to Morse’s plan.  The Austrian Government is much occupied selecting out of many plans (of telegraphs) one for her railroads.  I have offered Morse’s and proposed experiments.  I am determined to stay for some time, to give them a chance of making up their minds.”

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Samuel F. B. Morse, His Letters and Journals from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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