Start Date
Place
Notes
Source
1843
International
From 1843 to the early 1900s, fax is used only on
telegraph lines due to the lack of and distance
limitations of telephone lines. Fax is also only
used for unique point-to-point applications such
as sending information and photographs across
the country to newspapers.
http://2world.com/staging/afaxa/members/tim
eline.html June 2012
1843
Scotland
With the use of telegraph technology, a Scottish
physicist named Alexander Bain develops and
patents the first primitive facsimile machine
called a "recording telegraph". A sending and
receiving machine is set up at each end of a
telegraph line. The sending machine is designed
to sense light and dark spots by way of a stylus
attached to a pendulum which passes over the
metal type. The metal-to-stylus contact is either
open or closed depending on what is on the
metal plate. The open/close effect regulates a
direct current sent over the telegraph lines. On
the other end, the receiver device's pendulum
creates a brown stain as it swings across
chemically treated paper each time an electric
current passes through the pendulum.
http://2world.com/staging/afaxa/members/tim
eline.html June 2012
1848
UK
Bain's commercially unsuccessful device is
replaced by a cylinder-and-screw mechanism
developed by Frederick Bakewell, an English
physicist. It uses insulating ink written on a metal
surface and is credited as being the forerunner of
the modern facsimile machine.
http://2world.com/staging/afaxa/members/tim
eline.html June 2012
1861
France
The Pantelegraph machine is patented by
Giovanni Caselli. It becomes the first commercial
fax machine when a circuit between Lyon and
Paris is set up in 1865. The fax service continues
until 1870.
http://2world.com/staging/afaxa/members/tim
eline.html June 2012
1862
Italy
Abbe Giovanni Caselli (1815 - 1891), the Italian
physicist, builds pantelegraph. The device, a
precursor of the fax machine, uses telegraphs
and electrochemical processes to transmit
copies of photographs, printed texts and
drawings. First, documents are chemically
treated so that their surfaces start conduct
electricity. Next the transmitter scans a large
number of parallel lines on the document's
surface. Dark and light portions of the document
are detected by the reading stylus as different
electrical impulses. These signals are sent by
telegraph to a receiver where the writing stylus
moves across a chemically-treated sheet of
paper and replicates the original document. Both
sides of the operation are kept in sync by two
synchronised pendulums.
http://www.ciolek.com/GLOBAL/1800.html#1
800s
1870
France
Facsimile was first used commercially in France
as an electromechanical telegraph. In 1870 there
were some 17 Meyer facsimile instruments in
service in the French telegraph system in
conjunction with 4000 electromechanical
telegraph machines. It appears that the facsimile
facility was used to a large extent by the French
government and to carry information relating to
stock broking. The main advantages seen at this
time were the virtual elimination of errors in
transmission and the availability of a facsimile
signature.
http://www.hffax.de/history/ June 2012
1881
UK
English inventor Shelford Bidwell constructed the
scanning phototelegraph that was the first telefax
machine to scan any two-dimensional original,
not requiring manual plotting or drawing.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fax
1895
US
The Telediagraph was one of several early fax-
like devices sending pictures via telegraph lines.
It was invented circa 1895 by Ernest A. Hummel,
a watchmaker of St. Paul, Minnesota
http://www.hffax.de/html/hauptteil_hummel_ko
rn.html June 2012
1902
Germany
Arthur Korn (1870-1945), Germany, invents
telephotography. The process involves manual
breaking down and transmission of still
photographs by means of electrical wires. In
1907, Korn sent the first inter-city fax when he
transmitted a photograph from Munich to Berlin.
http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/f
ax.htm Jun 2012
1904
Germany
A photograph is transmitted by wire in Germany.
http://timelines.ws October 2009
1923
International
Under heavy media attention in 1923, Arthur Korn
successfully transmitted an image of Pope Pius
XI across the Atlantic Ocean, from Rome to Bar
Harbor, Maine, the picture being hailed as a
"miracle of modern science".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Korn_(phy
sicist) July 2010
1924
US
As a designer for the Radio Corporation of
America (RCA), in 1924, Richard H. Ranger
invented the wireless photoradiogram, or
transoceanic radio facsimile, the forerunner of
today's "Fax" machines
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fax June 2012
1924
US
In 1924, the telephotography machine (a type of
fax machine) was used to send political
convention photos long distance for newspaper
publication. It was developed by the American
Telephone & Telegraph Company (AT&T)
worked to improve telephone fax technology.
http://inventors.about.com/od/bstartinventors/
a/fax_machine.htm June 2012
1925
France
In 1925 Edouard Belin (1876-1963) in France
constructed the Belinograph. His invention
involved placing an image on a cylinder and
scanning it with a powerful light beam that had a
photoelectric cell which could convert light, or the
absence of light, into transmittable electrical
impulses. The Belinograph process used the
basic principle upon which all subsequent
facsimile transmission machines would be
based.
http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/f
ax.htm Jun 2012
1934
International
In 1934 the Associated Press introduced the first
system for routinely transmitting "wire photos."
http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/f
ax.htm Jun 2012
1948
US
Western Union manufactures 50,000 Deskfax
machines for fax transmission.
http://www.mediahistory.umn.edu July 2010
1955
US
In 1955-56, the Weather Bureau developed a
weather facsimile network using full time leased
lines. This network enabled the transmission of
analysis and prognostic weather charts,
eliminating the tedious process of encoding a
message of five-figure groups on the charts.
http://www.thehistoryof.net/history-of-fax-
machines.html June 2012
1964
International
The Xerox Corporation introduced Long
Distance Xerography (LDX).
http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/f
ax.htm Jun 2012
1966
International
Xerox introduced the Magnafax Telecopier a
smaller 46-pound facsimile machine that was
easier to use and could be connected to any
telephone line. Using this machine a letter-sized
document took about six minutes to transmit.
http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/f
ax.htm Jun 2012
1980
International
A further CCITT standard was agreed in 1980 for
Group 3 machines, which used digital
transmission techniques and took less than one
minute per page with an improved scanning
resolution of 200 lines per inch. All were
compatible and could communicate with most
Group 2 machines regardless of supplier.
http://www.hffax.de/history/ June 2012
1980
International
Public international electronic fax service,
Intelpost, begins.
http://www.mediahistory.umn.edu July 2009
1989
US
The number of fax machines in the U.S. grows to
2.5 million.
http://2world.com/staging/afaxa/members/tim
eline.html June 2012
1991
US
Estimated 5 million fax machines deployed in
US.
http://www.caslon.com February 2007
1993
US
Estimated 10 million fax machines deployed in
US.
http://www.caslon.com August 2006
1995
US
Estimated 15 million fax machines deployed in
US.
http://www.caslon.com September 2006
1998
International
Estimated 100 million fax machines deployed
worldwide.
http://www.caslon.com September 2006
1998
US
Estimated 20 million fax machines deployed in
US.
http://www.caslon.com September 2006
Fax Timeline
Created with Timeline Maker Professional. Produced on 07 Jun 2012.