A Guide to the Morse (Samuel F. B.) Letters, 1839,1860.
Born in Charleston, Massachusetts, inventor and painter Samuel Finley Breese Morse (1791-1872), graduated from Yale College in 1810. Morse attended the Royal Academy of Arts in London, England and began a successful career in painting in Europe and the United States. In 1832, Morse developed the concept of the single-wire telegraph and Morse code. In 1938, Morse proposed his patent to the U.S. Government and the Republic of Texas, but failed to gain sponsorship. Morse succeeded in securing funding from the U.S. Government after a successful demonstration in 1842.
Born in Vance County, North Carolina, Memucan Hunt (1807-1856) was a planter and businessman in Mississippi before joining the Texan Army during the Texas Revolution. In 1837, Hunt became the first Minister of Texas to the United States. A year later, President Mirabeau B. Lamar appointed Hunt as Texas Secretary of the Navy.
Source: Neu, C. T. “Hunt, Memucan,” Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed on February 17, 2011. http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fhu31.
The first of two, Samuel F. B. Morse Letters, 1839, 1860, written in 1839 by Memucan Hunt to Mirabeau B. Lamar, recounts an earlier letter from Morse to Hunt, offering the Republic of Texas sponsorship of Morse’s wire telegraph. In the second letter (1860) to Sam Houston, then governor of the state of Texas, Morse withdraws his 1839 offer as Texas was now part of the United States.
This collection is open for research use.
Samuel F. B. Morse Letters, 1839, 1860, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.
Detailed Description of the Papers