Alexander Graham Bell (3 March 1847 – 2 August 1922) was an eminent scientist, inventor and innovator who is credited with inventing the first practical telephone.
Bell’s father, grandfather, and brother had all been associated with work on elocution and speech, and both his mother and wife were deaf, profoundly influencing Bell’s life’s work. His research on hearing and speech further led him to experiment with hearing devices which eventually culminated in Bell being awarded the first U.S. patent for the telephone in 1876. In retrospect, Bell considered his most famous invention an intrusion on his real work as a scientist and refused to have a telephone in his study. Upon Bell’s death, all telephones throughout the United States “stilled their ringing for a silent minute in tribute to the man whose yearning to communicate made them possible”.
Here some family papers:
Alexander Graham Bell’s design sketch of the telephone, ca. 1876.
Alexander Graham Bell’s aeronautical sketch, May 10, 1903.
Alexander Graham Bell’s sketch of a kite, November 18, 1902.
More papers at http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/bellhtml/agbcap.html