Newsletter of the Mercurians, in the Society for the History of Technology

Volume 10 No. 2, May 1998

Mercurial Matters

Communication Technologies

A. Butrica Wins Prize

Antennas, More Generally

SHOT's 1998 Meeting

History of Cryptography

Echoes and Reflections

E. Wachtel accepts invitation to Antenna Board

Symposium on Telephone History



An Overview of Communication Analysis

Dead Media Project Expands

Essay: The Smirk of Progress

Book Review
Stage To Studio

New Media and Society

Contact us


Reasons for celebrating abound this springtime: Co-editor Andrew Butrica has received an impressive honor, and Edward Wachtel has accepted the editors' invitation to join the Associate Board.

And then there is the matter of celebrating Antenna's tenth volume. Pam Laird and Lori Breslow put together a newsletter for a couple of years in the early days of the Mercurians' gatherings. Milton Mueller, then a doctoral candidate at the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communication, took on the newsletter, named it Antenna, and recruited an enthusiastic band of graduate students to edit and publish it. Stories of pizza parties were legendary during those years; the pizza was even included in the budgets for a brief, shining moment.

Gradually the graduate students moved on, despite their time spent on Antenna. Mueller is now Associate Professor, Syracuse University School of Information Studies, tenured certainly because of having Antenna on his vita. The editorship fell then into the capable hands of Pamela Inglesby, but, before long, she too graduated. That's when the newsletter moved to Denver, still its home. Thanks to all of you for your interest and support. And thanks to SHOT and the University of Colorado Denver for their support; together they keep our subscription rate one of the best deals going.

As always, we extend an invitation to new and longtime Mercurians alike to introduce themselves by sending us statements for inclusion in future newsletters. Please contact Pam Laird ( with those contributions, as well as with additions or corrections to your e-mail addresses.

We would very much like to know about books or museum exhibitions that we ought to review. Please also send us reports on your recent activities, or queries if you would like to contribute an article or essay on your current project. We are always glad to include information pertinent to the many interests that Mercurians share.