Source: National Museum of American History.
Telegraph Receiver, 1844
The telegraph enabled the first instantaneous transmission of information over vast distances. Its wide diffusion, by the 1870s and 1880s permitted more efficient operations of businesses and railways. With the transoceanic telegraph (1866 and afterwards) continents became linked and the telecommunication industry was born. Several telecommunication giants of today (such as American Telephones and Telegraphs; AT&T), started up as telegraph service providers.