Invention Geek – Fax Machine?

Question from Kathy L.:

Dear Invention Geek,
I use a fax machine on a daily basis. Who invented this time savings machine? Was there a patent issued?
Kathy L.

Hey Kathy,

The invention of the fax machine is one of the greatest contributions to the history of communications.

Scottish clockmaker and inventor, Alexander Bain, is credited with inventing the first fax machine. He received British patent 9745 for the facsimile unit in 1843 for “automatic electrochemical recording telegraph.” Bain’s fax machine was an improvement on Sameul Morse’s telegraph machine. Morse’s device made it possible for the transmission of written messages over a wire. Bain called his invention a “recording telegraph” because of its ability to copy documents and images, rather than writing messages.

It has been almost 170 years since the first invention of the fax machine. Bain’s fax machine and concept has undergone numerous revisions before arriving at its current form.