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Grant number like: FA-53716-08

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Award Number Grant ProgramAward RecipientProject TitleAward PeriodApproved Award Total
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FA-53716-08Research Programs: Fellowships for University TeachersRichard R. JohnNetwork Nation: Ideals and Institutions in American Telecommunications, 1840-19201/1/2008 - 6/30/2008$25,200.00RichardR.John   Columbia UniversityChicagoIL60612-4305USA2007U.S. HistoryFellowships for University TeachersResearch Programs252000252000

My project is an archivally based study of the formative era of telecommunications in the United States (1840-1920). My theme is the influence of civic ideals and governmental institutions on the principal network providers (Western Union for the telegraph; Bell for the telephone). By expanding our understanding of early American telecommunications to embrace culture and politics as well as technology and economics, it points us toward an alternative genealogy of the information age, and helps us better understand some of the foundational principles that define us as a nation, while illuminating how our memory of these principles has shaped our expectations about the future.