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INTRODUCTORY.—The TELEGRAPH COMPANION, as now issued, is an improvement on the old series, or original issue. The quarto form was inconvenient.
The doctrines promulgated through this work will be relative to the Science and Art of Telegraphing. Many years' connection with the Morse American Electro-Magnetic Telegraph,—a participator in the struggles in its extension over thousands of miles of territory, even along the borders of, and before the doors of the red man's home, and an attentive student in the various legal investigations in the courts of the country, have infused into our mind a firm conviction of its superiority and originality over all other Electric Telegraphs of the present age.
Our teachings will be, to sustain this conviction, being in accordance with the decrees of many of the most learned jurists of the land, and the sanction of the American people.
In promoting the ends in view, we do not desire to discuss them in a manner calculated to cast any disrespect upon other systems of Electric Telegraphs, but at the same time, a candid discussion of the merits and relative rights of the diversified systems must be expected. We speak thus frankly, that none may be deceived in the policy pursued.
The whole range of Telegraphing will be considered, embracing the manner of management, working and general policy, the construction and repair of lines, the various departments of operation, and quantities of materials consumed, and everything requisite to elucidate the manual of Telegraphing.
We invite a fair consideration for the COMPANION, and a liberal encouragement. With these remarks, we submit the first number.
TAL. P. SHAFFNER. TERMS AND TIME OF PUBLICATION.—The Companion will be published monthly, 48 pages in each number, octavo, making over 600 pages per annum. Terms—$2,00 per year, payable in advance.
The Companion, proper, will be wholly letter-press writings, and will embrace one number of the Compound Tariff Scale. The Tariff Scale will be a separate publication. The works will issue on the first of each month.
Tue Compound Tariff SCALE will contain 32 octavo pages, and be devoted entirely to Tariff affairs, being 30 pages of rule and figure work, and two pages of explanatory notes relative thereto.
Terms-$2,00 per year. It will be issued monthly, with all the corrections of Tariffs, and new offices established by the new lines built.
COMPANION AND TARIFF SCALE.—The Companion will be sent to subscribers for $2,00 per year. The Tariff Scale will be forwarded at $2,00 per year. Both publications will be sent to one address for $3,00 per annum. We hope every Operator, and every Officer of the different Companies, will give us the necessary material aid in the publication of these important works. Merchants would find the Tariff a very useful book in the count. ing-room. Stockholders would find the Companion a useful book in obtaining a proper understanding of the art of Telegraphing. We hope to have the co-operation of all in accomplishing the grand desideratum.
OUR PUBLICATIONS AGAIN.—We desire it to be distinctly understood, that in the publication of these works we do not expect gain. They will cost more than the subscription. Already there has been expended nearly one thousand dollars, and the most unanimous subscription will not meet the outlay. We hope, however, the Companies will give all the aid possible. If the works pay expenses of printing, it is all we desire. Our labor and responsibility will be gratuitous in the premises.
OLD SUBSCRIBERS.—The subscribers to the Companion during the last year can have their choice in taking either of the works for the coming year at the same price. We will send to the Company subscribers the Tariff, knowing the object of their subscription to be for it. To the Operators we will send the Companion. If any change is desired, we will cheerfully comply.
DELAY OF PUBLICATION.—The delay has not been intentional, or for want of energy, but as a question of policy. The change of place of publication from Louisville to New-York, and the change of position from the Presidency of the St. Louis and New-Orleans line, to the Secretaryship of the General Confederation, require a change in the order of things, to meet the necessities of the future. It is our purpose to publish the work, let the subscription be large or small.
THE AMERICAN TELEGRAPI CONFEDERATION will hold the next annual meeting in Washington City, on the 6th day of March, 1854. A
representation from every Morse line in the United States, Canadas, Mexico, Nova Scotia, or in other words, every line in North America, is expected to be represented there. We have already heard of the appointment of many delegates to attend that meeting, and we hope others will promptly act in the matter. Where Presidents or Superintendents have authority to represent their lines, it is hoped they will not fail to attend.
We would call attention to the official circulars in the present number, as involving important facts for the consideration of every Company.
ATMOSPHERIC TELEGRAPH.—During our recent trip to oston, we visited the rooms of the Atmospheric Dispatch Company, No. 24 Merchants' Exchange, State Street.
We bad but little confidence in the practicability of the enterprise, prior
to an examination of the machine and witnessing its operation. The tubes were made of lead, about two inches in diameter, and about twenty feet long. The feasibility of the invention for the uses designed was demonstrated by various experiments. Although the operation seemed to be perfect, yet we entertained doubts as to the ultimate success of a long line; but Mr. I. S. Richardson, the talented inventor, readily presented arguments, based upon fixed laws in philosophy, dispelling all fears. Important results will characterize this invention, though many difficulties will occur in its early progress. After fruition is attained, there will be hundreds claiming to be the original inventor. Like the history of Morse, men who were slumbering in ignorance for years later than his invention, have come forward and claimed to be the sole progenitor of the great art, conceived by Morse, and brought to perfection by the toil of years.
The Atmospheric Dispatch Company contemplate constructing a line from Boston to Worcester, as the first section of a line to New-York. The shares are $100 each, payable in calls of ten per cent., commencing on the 1st of February, 1854. Total capital stock, $500,000. The tube to be two feet in diameter, for conveying letters and packages to and from the said cities and intermediate places, allowing fifteen minutes to each transit.
Although we feel confident of successful results from the art invented, yet we cannot believe in the realization of all the hopes entertained by the worthy and ingenious inventor. If it accomplishes one half, the triumph will be great. The achievement will rival in brilliancy the brightest star of this progressive age. It will be one of the most marvellous and resplendent gems that bedeck the illustrious escutcheon of American ingenuity.
Telegraph MAGAZINE.-It has been announced that the Companion, published heretofore at Louisville, was to be united with the Telegraph Magazine, published in New-York. Such was the design of the proprietors of the two publications, but circumstances have occurred rendering the union inexpedient.
A Baby BATTERY.--While on a visit to Boston, not long since, we called on Messrs. Palmer & Hall, Telegraph Instrument Manufacturers, and were shown a baby battery, composed of zinc and copper, and dilute sulphuric acid. The plates were one-eighth of an inch square, and as thin as a common wafer. The action of the battery was sufficient to work the largest Relay Magnet. It was a beautiful exhibition, and its minuteness gave it no ordinary degree of novelty.
Alarm TELEGRAPH.-Houses are now being built, in cities, with telegraphs connecting each window and door with the bed-chamber; so that in case of the entry of burglars at night, an alarm-bell is sounded, waking up the residents, and advising a sudden retreat of the nocturnal invader. This is an important improvement, worthy of general use.
A NEW BATTERY.–We had the pleasure of examining a new galvanic battery, invented by Mr. Moses G. Farmer, Superintendent of the Electric Telegraph of the Boston Fire Department. Gallon jars, large porous cups, and amalgamated zinc are used, differently constructed from Grove battery. The mode of application secures a constant battery for some thirty days without renewal. We hope to have a detailed account of the invention of Mr. Farmer, and if it proves more economical, and attains an electric current equal to the Grove battery, it will deserve the immediate consideration of the various Telegraph Companies.
Balize TELEGRAPI LINE.—This line extends from Algiers, opposite NewOrleans, to the Balize, at the mouth of the Mississippi River. It is owned by the Union Tow-Boat Company, and is well managed. The length is 120 miles. To commerce it proves to be of infinite value.
THE TELEGRAPAS IN CANADA.-In no section of America are there more lines in progress of construction than in the Canadas. We hear of some three thousand miles now being built. These lines will greatly aid the general system, and advance the prosperity of existing lines. As soon as we can collect proper material, we will give more definite news as to their extent.
ATLANTIC AND Ono TELEGRAPH LINE.—This Company has two wires from Philadelphia, through Harrisburg and other towns, to Pittsburg. A leased wire from the Magnetic Telegraph Company between Philadelphia and New-York is worked by this Company, as a more direct connection with the latter city. Mr. David Brooks has lately been elected Superintendent of the lines of this Company. Mr. Brooks is a gentleman well qualified for the station, and a thorough telegrapher. He is familiar with all the various departments, and his acts are characterized by excellent judgment. He labors for success by an economical and judicious management, laying aside all freaks of fancy, and adopting the useful. We most certainly wish him success, and that the prosperity of the line may be triumphant.
THE MAGNETIC TELEGRAPH COMPANY.—This is the oldest Electro-Magnetic Telegraph Company in the world. It extends from Washington, through Baltimore and Philadelphia, to New-York. It has seven wires. The management of this line is somewhat peculiar, but well suited to its necessities. In a future number, a detailed account of the system will be given, believing that other lines can be benefited by the adoption of equivalent plans of operation. Wm. M. Swain, Esq., is the indefatigable and talented President.
Boston AND PORTLAND LINE.—For many years the line between these two cities has been owned and managed by the Hon. F. 0. J. Smith. Recently he sold the entire line, 120 miles, to the Maine Telegraph Company, which gives it a continuous wire from Boston to Calais, Me. The steamers' news is now sent direct from Halifax to Boston. We ardently hope that this line will realize a handsome revenue ; but we cannot comprehend the necessity of connecting with an adversary in Boston. Morse lines ought to connect with each other. The policy adopted by Mr. Smith, a few years ago, refusing business from illegitimate lines, was universally condemned. We can see but little difference in the policy now adopted by Mr. Eddy, the Superintendent, in his separation from the Morse lines in Boston and connecting with the House line. The largest patronage received from other lines is from the Morse Companies. The return business is sent back, by Mr. Eddy, through a different line, and one, too, limited in extent, connecting but few towns in the United States. The consummation of prosperity is only attained by an unbroken connection.
New MAGNETIC BATTERY.—A short time since we visited Providence, R. I., to witness the operation of a new battery in course of construction, designed to propel boats, or used as a motive power in mechanics generally, and to be applied to Telegraph lines. Mr. Calvin Carpenter, the inventor, has displayed a great deal of zeal and genius in the construction of the work. A patent has recently been granted him for the invention. We saw various experiments performed, and they were really wonderful. A small wire was placed in the circuit and instantly burnt into pieces. The power was great, and the current of electricity seemed to be even, and attaining what some gentlemen style quantity and intensity as verified by the diversified tests. The large battery, Mr. Carpenter estimates, is equal in strength to 100,000 pounds. In a future number we will give a minute description of the machine. To Mr. F. O. Gilbert, Manager of the Telegraph Office, and to Gov. Jackson, we are indebted for much information derived while at Providence.
Iron Wire. In the construction of Telegraph lines, a good quality of iron wire is more important than any other portion of material used. For the same reasons that required the copper wire to be taken down from the early lines, demand the use of the very best iron wire that can be procured. We have seen all qualities used. Some worthless, and some very superior. Messrs. Dewey & Co., at Wheeling, Va., have probably manufactured the best wire employed for Telegraph lines west of the mountains. The wire was made from the Missouri Iron Mountain ore, which is doubtless superior lo any other iron of America. We think so, because the wire manufactured from that ore has proved the most substantial.
Recently we were shown some specimens of wire from the extensive manufactory of Mr. Henry S. Washburn, at Worcester, Mass. It excelled all other wire that we have witnessed. The testings were startling and almost beyond belief. We have never seen wire of equal quality used by any line in America, though we understand that Messrs. Smith & Ward-who are very worthy and energetic gentlemen—have purchased a lot of the same wire for some new lines being constructed by them in Texas.
The question as to quality of wire will be presented to the General Committee, at Washington City, and we indulge the hope that some means will be adopted to aid Telegraph builders in procuring the very best wire in the construction or repairing of lines.