Glass ceiling edison
Inventor Thomas Edison
First Appearance The Glass Ceiling

The Phonograph is a method of reproducing recorded sound which was initially invented by Thomas Edison using a tin-foil cylinder  in 1877. It was then developed by Alexander Graham Bell (who also foresaw the disc gramophone as a dominant medium) which into a wax based cylinder  in the mid 1880s. In the late 1880s Dr. Emile Berliner  was working independently to develop a disc-based "gramophone" record using his own system. Both the cylinder and disc was developed in the early 1890s giving birth a more modern recorded music industry. Both disc based and cylinder based phonographs can be seen in many episodes. There are 2 main types of phonographs that would have been available at the turn of the century; a vertical cut cylinder based off of brown metallic wax and a flat, thick gramophone laterally cut disc made of either hardened rubber or shellac. 

Dr. Julia Ogden has a anachronistic Edison ""Diamond Disc" " phonograph (which was a vertical cut record only available in 1912, years after its first appearance in the show) at the City Morgue. While she was working on the post-mortem of Percival Pollack she was listening to "Three Little Maids From School Are We" ("The Glass Ceiling").

When Ogden was working on the post-mortem of Richard Hartley she was listening to a recording on her phonograph ("Still Waters").

In several episodes Detective Murdoch used an anachronistic internal-horn Edison Amberola (again, the first were only available in between 1909 and the final made in 1929, of the many different models all using various types of wax and Celluloid cylinders) in order to solve several mysteries. In Murdoch in Toyland Detective William Murdoch claims that in order to record a cylinder for the Edison Talking Dolls one would require electricity, which wasyet another anachronism, at the time ALL recordings were done acoustically, in which the recorded person would essentailly yell into a recording horn in order to make a loud enough impression into the medium's grooves. While telephones used a similar system, electrical recording was not developed until the mid 1920s. It can be speculated that the show's creators used this in order to avoid confusing the audience. In another episode Murdoch and a suspect are seen using Murdoch's Amberola and a microphone to record their conversation. 

Appearances & Mentions


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