Please click your language flag. Bitte Sprachflagge klicken.

History of the manufacturer  

Marconi Wireless Telegraph Co. of America

As a member you can upload pictures (but not single models please) and add text.
Both will display your name after an officer has activated your content, and will be displayed under «Further details ...» plus the text also in the forum.
Name: Marconi Wireless Telegraph Co. of America    (USA)  
alternative name:
American Marconi || Marconi, American
Brand: Marconiphone
Abbreviation: marconiusa
Products: Model types Tube manufacturer

Marconi Wireless Telegraph Co. of America, New York: The new company for operations in the USA was incorporated in the state of New Jersey as the Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company of America (hereafter called American Marconi). In 1919 almost all of the assets, financial, capital, technical and human were transferred from American Marconi to the Radio Corporation. American Marconi was dissolved as a corporation in April 1920.

American Marconi has been named in internet sites but this is not an official name. We use the official name (see also name plates, literature etc.).

Founded: 1899
Closed: 1920
One of Marconi's goals was to develop a practical wireless signalling system. His ideas attracted enough attention for interested financiers to set up the Wireless Telegraph and Signal Company in 1897. In order to achieve a more effective fundraising (probably based on the drawing power of Marconi's name), the name of the company was changed to "Marconi's Wireless Telegraph Company, Ltd." (Hereafter called British Marconi). Marconi understood the potential of long range communications for both maritime and international use.

Although the transmission medium was beyond anyone's control, the newly-formed company planned to own the facilities at both ends of their communications pathways. To assure control of marine communications, the shipboard stations were rented, not sold. The limited range of both ship-board stations and (in the early days) land stations, meant that a chain of stations had to be installed throughout the world.

Therefore additional companies had to be set up in several nations. World-wide communications could eventually be developed by increasing power, building larger antennas and improving detectors. Besides maritime messaging, the land stations could also be utilized to serve world-wide business interests. To carry out both functions, it was decided to put two subsidiary companies in place. The first was to operate between Europe and America and serve ships sailing in western waters. This was accomplished in 1899. The new company was incorporated in the state of New Jersey as the Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company of America (hereafter called American Marconi).

The second subsidiary company was organized in 1900 as the Marconi International Marine Communications Company. Shortly after it was set up, it opened stations in England and Ireland. The primary source of income for the Marconi companies was the marine message service. Initially this was not a big business, but with the recognition of the importance of wireless communications to ship safety (Titanic) it grew quickly. As the number of stations and the revenues they earned increased, the Marconi companies became a world force.

Modest growth continued until the beginning of World War I, when the Navy took over nearly all of American Marconi's facilities, including the coastal stations and the shipboard stations on ocean-going vessels. This put American Marconi out of the trans-Atlantic message service business but not out of the radio equipment manufacturing business.

After the war, the Navy was reluctant to return the bulk of American radio communications to what seemed to be a foreign agency. Though it was argued that American Marconi was not really a foreign company, the Navy knew that the controlling interest was held by British Marconi. The solution to the problem was to have the British interests bought by an American company. At that time (1919), General Electric was negotiating with Marconi. It was arranged for GE to start a new company that could take over the British interests and receive the stations held by the Navy. That company was incorporated in November 1919 as the Radio Corporation of America. Almost all of the assets, financial, capital, technical and human were transferred from American Marconi to the Radio Corporation. American Marconi was dissolved as a corporation in April 1920.

Based on an article in the AWA Journal, 1992.

This manufacturer was suggested by Konrad Birkner † 12.08.2014.

Some models:
Country Year Name 1st Tube Notes
USA  13 103   Early wireless receiver; crystal set that was made primarily from English parts. It came o... 
USA  15–17 106   The receiver covered 200-3500 meters and was used primarily for marine applications. The 1... 
USA  17 Morse key CM425   Morse key, ebonite base. The large contacts could handle 20 amps. 
USA  12 Magnetic detector   There are differences between the American and the English Marconi magnetic detector: the ... 
USA  13 107A   Originally a Fleming Valve tuner, converted by the factory to a 107A. 
USA  15 Radio Receiver 106D   Marconi Wireless 106D Radio Receiver Towards the end of 1922 GE introduced a conversion k... 
USA  19 Radio Receiver 106B   Marconi Wireless 106B Radio Receiver In 1918 American Marconi introduced the 106B as a co... 
USA  12 "Roadmap" Spark Key Type C   One of the first products of the American Marconi Company was this "Roadmap" Spark Key. c.... 
USA  14 Marconi Loose Coupler   Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company loose coupler receiving transformer. 
USA  17 Wireless Receiver CM 294C   The Department of the Navy CM 294C was built by the Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company. Th... 
USA  16 Wireless Direction Finder Marconi-Bellini-Tosi System    
USA  17–25 5 KW Quenched Spark Gap Navy Type SE 1005   This is a 5KW Quenched Spark Gap, a part of the Navy Standard 500-cycle Spark Transmitters... 


Further details for this manufacturer by the members (rmfiorg):

Anteilsschein über 50 Anteile zu $5.00 an American Marconi, ausgegeben 6.3.1913tbn_us_marconi_1913_aktie.jpg
Certificate for 50 shares at $5.00 in “Marconi Wireless Telegraph Co. of America“, issued 6 Sep.1914
hanging in the “Ye Olde Hurdy-Gurdy Museum of Vintage Radio“.
QST September 1919tbn_qst_september_1919.png
QST February 1920tbn_qst_february_1920.png


Data Compliance More Information