Samuel F. B. Morse
Fifth Avenue at 72nd Street at the Inventor's Gate
Samuel F. B. Morse (1791 - 1872) was an American inventor and artist best remembered as the inventor of the electric telegraph. Morse was also the founder and first president of the National Academy of Design. This sculpture by Byron M. Picket was commissioned by a group of telegraph operators and unveiled in 1871. The statue depicts Morse with one hand on a telegraph machine and the other holding a strip of paper from the machine. While Morse's original device produced markings on paper (hence, the name tele-GRAPH), operators learned to interpret the sounds made by the machine and Morse Code became an aural rather than graphical means of communication.