Alfredo E. Cotroneo alfredo a NEXUS.ORG
Gio 19 Dic 2002 00:37:15 CET

By OLIVER MOORE, Globe and Mail Update Jun. 22

OTTAWA (CP) - Canada is fighting back in the long-distance war of
words with the Americans over who invented the telephone.

Just before rising for the summer break yesterday, the House of
Commons passed a motion officially recognizing Alexander Graham Bell
as the true inventor of the telephone. The move came after the U.S.
Congress passed a resolution declaring Italian-American Antonio Meucci
as the inventor.

Heritage Minister Sheila Copps says Bell was a visionary, calling him
"an inspiring example of a Canadian inventor who ... contributed to
the advancement of knowledge and the progress of humanity."

Bell, a Scot who came to Brantford, Ont., in 1870 with his parents,
has long been recognized as the person who invented the telephone
there. His revolutionary device was patented in the United States
in 1876.

Bell also carried out extensive experiments with kites, boats and
hydrofoils at Baddeck, N.S., where he had a summer home. He died at
Baddeck in 1922.

The U.S. resolution was an expression of opinion by Congress and does
not carry legal weight. But many saw the declaration as an American
attempt to rewrite history.

"In the past number of years, historical records and scholarly
research have concluded that Meucci was the original inventor of the
telephone, long before Bell," said Craig Donner, a spokesperson for
Vito Fossella, the U.S. congressman who authored the resolution.

The resolution says Meucci gave notice of an impending patent on his
early phone in 1871, but couldn't afford the $10 to renew it in 1874.
If he had, it goes on, Bell would not have been granted his patent two
years later (via Brian Smith, ODXA, DX LISTENING DIGEST)

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