Wireless transformed the modern world. At first it was a means of individual communication, for sending telegraphic messages in Morse code without the need for connecting cables, hence the name ‘wire-less’. Two decades later radio signals were also being ‘broadcast’. Radio was entering the home, bringing information and entertainment, and anyone could ‘listen in’. The commonly used expression ‘listening in’ perfectly captured the shift from private and individual communication to public broadcasting accessible to everyone.
This exhibition of material draws on the Marconi collection now held in Oxford at the Museum of the History of Science and the Bodleian Library. It presents the first decades of the history of radio (or ‘wireless’), from Marconi’s pioneering experiments and demonstrations at the end of the 19th century to the beginning of public radio broadcasting in the 1920s.
To find out more about the Marconi artefacts at the Museum of the History of Science see our Marconi home page, which gives access to a complete online catalogue and to other Marconi resources.