What hath God wrought? The first telegraphic message

On this day in 1844, Samuel Finley Breese (F.B.) Morse dispatches the first ever telegraphic message over an experimental line running from Washington, D.C., to Baltimore. Telegrams forever changed our national communication system.

Morse had spent the previous 12 years developing a telegraph instrument and composing Morse code.

That iconic, timeless first message was “What hath God wrought?”

Annie Ellsworth, the young daughter of Morse’s old college friend, Henry L. Ellsworth, the Commissioner of Patents, suggested the phrase from the Bible, Numbers 23:23.

Now it shall be said…

Here is some more context of that Bible verse:

21b The LORD their God is with them,
and the shout of a king is among them.
22 God brings them out of Egypt
and is for them like the horns of the wild ox.
23 For there is no enchantment against Jacob,
no divination against Israel;
now it shall be said of Jacob and Israel,
‘What has God wrought!’
24 Behold, a people! As a lioness it rises up
and as a lion it lifts itself;
it does not lie down until it has devoured the prey
and drunk the blood of the slain.


What hath God wrought? The first telegraphic message with Morse code

MLK Washington Monument

On this day in 1969, James Earl Ray pleads guilty to the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., then is sentenced to 99 years in prison. Interestingly, Ray was born on this day in 1928.

King’s legacy as a leader endures because of Who he followed. The following quotes exemplify the essence of his life and his message:

“Use me, God. Show me how to take who I am, who I want to be, and what I can do, and use it for a purpose greater than myself.”

King’s King

Finally, King spoke these words as he concluded his last sermon, delivered the day before he was shot and killed:

“I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the promised land. … I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.”

Martin Luther King, Jr., Washington D.C. Monument

Alexander Hamilton Aaron Burr duel

“Hamilton” is back in the news regarding decorum for political rivalry. So, that presents an opportunity. In fact, a “double opportunity” to share Our two posts regarding Alexander Hamilton’s duel with his political rival Aaron Burr.

First, here a few portions of Alexander Hamilton’s Statement on Impending Duel with Aaron Burr from 1804:

“I am conscious of no ill-will to Col Burr, distinct from political opposition, which, as I trust, has proceeded from pure and upright motives.
Lastly, I shall hazard much, and can possibly gain nothing by the issue of the interview.

[H]owever convinced myself that my opinions and declarations have been well founded… I have resolved, if our interview is conducted in the usual manner, and it pleases God to give me the opportunity, to reserve and throw away my first fire, and I have thoughts even of reserving my second fire—and thus giving a double opportunity to Col Burr to pause and to reflect.”

Now, Our previous posts on Alexander Hamilton :



Alexander Hamilton Aaron Burr duel