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Re: [ARSCLIST] on record: presidential debates 1908 style

The transfers were done by the University of California, Santa Barbara.


From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List on behalf of Tom Fine
Sent: Sat 10/4/2008 7:36 AM
To: ARSCLIST@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] on record: presidential debates 1908 style

Ron, this is good work. Who did the cylinder transfers? The audio was surprisingly clear and crisp
for that era. Very enjoyable presentation, both the writing and the web content. Thanks for sharing.

Question for the group -- was this the election that Bryan recorded the re-creation of one of his
stemwinders, including a phony "crowd" cheering him on? I forgot if it was the "Cross of Gold"
speech or another one but somewhere I have the audio.

-- Tom Fine

----- Original Message -----
From: "Ron Cowen" <rcowen@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <ARSCLIST@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Saturday, October 04, 2008 12:01 AM
Subject: [ARSCLIST] on record: presidential debates 1908 style

I just wrote a neat piece for Science News magazine online on the coming
of age of the phonograph and the first sound bites recorded by candidates
running for the White House, exactly 100 years ago in 1908. William
Jennings Bryan and William Howard Taft recorded their voices on Edison wax
cylinders that were sold for 35 cents apiece, and for the first time the
voice of a candidate for president was brought into the home using the
phonograph, which had just become more portable and affordable. My story
is at
and includes a prescient audio of Bryan talking about the rights of
depositors in case of a bank failure.  Also some great images from my
personal collection, including a rare French cartoon of Bryan and Taft
mannequins standing before cylinder phonographs. to access audio, click on
gallery of images and go to extreme right
Ron Cowen

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