Philo T. Farnsworth-tv Inventor

By: caroline mackay

Recently I was reading a list of inventors of important inventions that affect our lives every day. I glanced down the list quickly looking for the inventor I knew most about because he once lived in this area. To my astonishment he was not on the list, in fact, the item he invented was not on the list. This really surprised me because most everyone now days has at least one or two of these in their homes.

So let me introduce you to the inventor of TV, Philo T. Farnsworth. When Phil T. Farnsworth first talked about transmitting pictures through the air to a little box, the people in the small town of Rigby, Idaho probably thought he had lost his marbles. Well, time has proved that he didn't loose his marbles, but he did spread this idea all over the place.

With the introduction of TV into our world we were all just happy to have one of these magical boxers in our living room. No one thought they would ever be lucky enough to have two or event better yet, be able to take one where ever they went.

Phil T. Farnsworth got the key to the TV tube when he was 14 and a farm boy. By the age of 21 he had a working device. His parents wanted him to be a violinist, but he was more interested in experimenting with electricity. His mother's first electric washing machine was built by him.

He was born in a log cabin in 1906 in a small town in Utah. He rode his horse to school. When he was 15 he was living in the small town of Rigby, Idaho. At the age of 15 Farnsworth understood the Theory of Relativity probably better than his high school teacher who had tutored him in an audited senior chemistry class. This teacher would testify years later in a patent interference case.

Phil said that the idea of TV came to him on an Idaho potato field. As he tilled the plants behind a horse drawn harrow going back and forth and back and forth. You can just see his inventive mind working over time while he was doing this monotonous task. Realizing at length that an electron beam could scan images the same way. Row by row or line by line as if reading the book.

With only two years of high school complete he applied to Brigham Young University and was accepted despite his youth and the lack of a high school diploma. Here he researched television picture transmission. In 1926 at the ripe old age of 20 he co founded Crooker Research Laboratories, later to be renamed Farnsworth Television Inc in 1929.
In 1927 he transmitted a television image of 60 horizontal lines. He filed for his first television patent # 1,773,980 in the year 1927.

He continued to invent all of his life. One hundred sixty five different items he invented included amplifiers, vacuum tubes, electrical scanners, electron multipliers and photoelectric materials and equipment for converting an optical image into an electrical signal. He came a long was from that first electric washing machine for his mom to the magic box, called television, for the world.

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