The History of Television, 1880 to 1941


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About the Book

No other technological innovation can be cited whose impact on the fabric of daily living has been as pervasive as that of television. A sole inventor does not exist; television came about through the remarkable interactions of several hundred scientists.
Interviews with these scientists, extensive archival research worldwide, and rare photos make this book—and its following volume—the one definitive history and the only authoritative account. Herein are the early inventions, the first devices, early camera tubes, the mechanical era, the kinescope, the iconoscope, and more. There are very extensive references.

About the Author(s)

The late Albert Abramson worked at CBS for over 30 years as a cameraman, videotape editor, and sound technician, and was the author of several books and articles on the history of television aside from the two-volume set from McFarland. He lived in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Bibliographic Details

Albert Abramson
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 368
Bibliographic Info: 50 photos, glossary, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2009 [1987]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4086-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii

Foreword (by Dr. Albert Rose)      xi

Introduction      xiii

1. Archaeology and Prehistory of Television: 1671–1879      1

2. Early Schemes and Inventions: 1880–1899      10

3. The First Devices: 1900–1911      23

4. “Distant Electric Vision”: 1911–1920      38

5. The Early Camera Tubes: 1921–1924      51

6. The Mechanical Era Begins: 1925–1927      73

7. The Introduction of the Kinescope: 1928–1929      108

8. Back to the Laboratory: 1930–1932      147

9. The Iconoscope: 1933–1935      193

10. The London Television Service: 1936–1939      226

11. The First NTSC: 1940–1941      257

Notes      273

Bibliography      327

Glossary of Terms      331

Index      339

Book Reviews & Awards

“a massive quantity of research”—Library Journal; “voluminous documentation”—Choice; “an important book…[a] definitive history of the medium to World War II”—Communication Booknotes Quarterly.