When most of us think of television and television history, we tend to think of when our families got their first television set – usually sometime in the 1950’s. That is the time when television became somewhat affordable for the masses. But in truth, the history of television began in 1875. Here is a brief chronology of the early events of television history.

  • 1875 – George R. Carey proposes the idea od a television system where each picture element is simultaneously tramsmitted.
  • 1880 – The idea of scanning an image is propsed by E.E. Sawyer and Maurice LeBlanc.
  • 1900 – The term television is first coined by Constantin Perskyi at the Paris Exposition.
  • 1921 – Charles Francis Jenkins forms Jenkin Laboratories in Washington to develop radio movies to be broadcast to the home.
  • May 19,1922 – Charles Jenkins achieves his first successful transmission in his laboratories.
  • October 3, 1922 – Charles Jenkins demonstrates television. It was different than modern television however. He sent still images by telephone wire from Washington to the Navy station in Anacostia and then transmitted them back to the post offfice in Washington via wireless transmission.
  • June 14, 1923 – Jenkins successfully transmits television in themodern sense.
  • December 29, 1923 – Zworykin applies for a patent on the idea of an all electronic television system.
  • June 13, 1925 – Jenkins performs a synchronized transmission of sound and pictures. Jenkins called this technology radiovision.

To learn more about the early milestones of television, visit A U.S. Television Chronology, 1875-1970.

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