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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • THE NAVY NEEDS YOU IN THE WAVES

Texting: 1917

Texting: 1917

New York, August 1917. "Wireless instruction -- Pratt Institute." 5x7 glass negative, George Grantham Bain Collection. View full size.

 

Hats

It must have taken them a minute or two to get the right hat with the right head!

There are some really good-looking young men here! The one on the far left side of the left table, fourth from the end, is real cute, and the one standing looks pretty good, too. That's just to name a few!

I hope they all survived that horrible war!

Not a speed key in sight

Like jdowling23, my dad was a ham radio operator, and an ex-Navy signalman, so thumb and forefinger were all I ever saw. By the early 1950s, he was sending 70-80 wpm using a speedkey with side-to-side action. The old Navy thumb and forefinger made speed really easy, or so he said. Best I could ever do was a piddling 10.

Thanks, landtuna

My dad was a ham, and I always thought the thumb-and-forefinger method was the only correct way to use a telegraph key. But then, Dad was ex-Navy. Now when I see those guys in movies tapping the key, I'll know they aren't doing it wrong.

I used to do 25 WPM

but only until I passed the Amateur Extra code exam way back in 1976. I hated operating Morse, and I was never comfortable with it. I admired those who could copy 15 or 20 wpm in their heads!

I'll bet these guys could really fly with it, and under some stress, too!

The Army Does it Differently

The Signal Corps was apparently taught to "tap" the key, i.e., with both fore and middle finger on top of the key. The Navy taught us to put thumb and forefinger on each side of the key. Each method will give the operator a "fist" which becomes identifiable to other operators.

BTW, Morse is faster than texting. Jay Leno proved it.

See: http://www.ebaumsworld.com/video/watch/80519289/

Wires

Those are wired, code practice oscillators. One guy sends to the others at the table.

That was before code practice tapes.
http://www.arrl.org/code-practice-files

 
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