Suggested Books on Communications History

Books by, and suggested by, Mercurians

Our website has received inquiries about reading on the history of communication technologies, so we have gathered, and will add to, this list of books by Mercurians. An Asterisk in front of an author's name indicates that they are a Mercurian. Also please note that interested readers can find reviews of many of these books in Technology & Culture, and also in Antenna. A list of books on computer history is at the bottom of this page.
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Mercurian Book List

A History of Broadcasting in the United States
Barnouw, Erik
3 volumes(1970)

A Phone of our Own: The Deaf Insurrection against Ma Bell
Harry G. Lang
Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet University Press, 2000

Advertising Progress: American Business and the Rise of Consumer Marketing
*Pamela Walker Laird
Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998

Antonio Meucci - L'Inventore e il suo Tempo - Da Firenze a L'Avana
(Vol. 1) [IN ITALIAN]
*Basilio Catania
Seat Publications, Turin (Italy) 1994

Antonio Meucci - L'Inventore e il suo Tempo - New York 1850-1871
(Vol. 2) [IN ITALIAN]
*Basilio Catania
Seat Publications, Turin (Italy) 1996

Antonio Meucci: L'Inventore e il suo Tempo
(2 VOLS)
*Basilio Catania
Edizioni Seat, Turin, 1994 & 1996

At the Picture Show: Small-Town Audiences and the Creation of Movie Fan Culture
Kathryn H. Fuller
Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1996

Atlas Histórico de las Comunicaciones en España, 1700-1998
Ángel Bahamonde Magro, Gaspar Martínez Lorente, and Luis Enrique Otero Carvajal
Correos y Telégrafos, Madrid, 1998

Beyond the Ionosphere: Fifty Years of Satellite Communication
*Andrew J. Butrica
NASA History Series, SP-4217.
U.S. Governmant Printing House
Superintendent of Documents, Mail Stop SSOP
Washington, DC 20402-9328
NASA, 1997

Brass-Pounders: Young Telegraphers of the Civil War
Alvin F. Harlow
Denver: Sage Books, 1962

Communication in History: Technology, Culture, Society (Second Edition)
Edited by David Crowley and Paul Heyer
White Plains, N.Y.: Longman Publishers, 1995

Communication Satellites 1958-1995
Donald H. Martin
TK 5104.M368 1958-95, Copyright 1996
AIAA Publications Customer Service
9 Jay Gould Court
P. O. Box 753
Waldorf, MD 20604

Control through Communication: The Rise of System in American Management
*JoAnne Yates
Johns Hopkins University Press, 1989, 1993

Cybercities: Visual Perception in the Age of Electronic Communications
M. Christine Boyer
New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1996

Der "Transistor" als technisches und kulturelles Phnomen: Die Transistorisierung der Radio- und Fernsehempfnger in der deutschen Rundfunkindustrie von 1955 bis 1965
Andreas Fickers
Bassum: Verlag fr Geschichte der Naturwissenschaften und der Technik, 1998

Early Television: A Bibliographic Guide to 1940
Edited by George Shiers and May Shiers
New York: Garland, 1996

Entreprise, technologie, et souverainet: Les tecommunications transatlantiques de la France (XIXe-XXe sicles)
*Pascal Griset
Paris: Editions Rive Droite, 1996

Everything Happened Around the Switchboard
Michael R. Hathaway
Conway, NH: Reflection Publications, 1996

Excursión A La Electrónica
*José Altshuler
Editorial Científico-Técnica, La Habana, 1984

Exposición Histórica De Las Telecomunicaciones
José María Romeo López (Ed.)
Secretaría General de Comunicaciones, Madrid, 1990

Getting the Message Through: A Branch History of the U.S. Army Signal Corps
*Rebecca Robbins Raines
Washington, D.C.: Center of Military History, United States Army, 1996

Global Communications since 1844: Geopolitics and Technology
Peter Hugill
Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1999

Holding the Line: The Telephone in Old Order Mennonite and Amish Life
Diane Zimmerman Umble
Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996

Inside Western Union
Maurice Joseph (Mike) Rivise
New York: Sterling Pub. Co., 1950

Institutions in the Transport and Communications Industries: State and Private Actors in the Making of Institutional Patterns, 1850-1990
Edited by Lena Andersson-Skog and Ollie Krantz
Canton, Mass.: Watson Publising International, 1999

The Invention of Communication
Armand Mattelart, trans. Susan Emanuel
Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1996

Inventing The Internet
*Janet Abbate
MIT Press, 1999

Las Telecomunicaciones En Hispanoamérica:
Pasado, Presente Y Futuro
Various Asociación Hispanoamericana de Centros de Investigación y Empresas de Telecomunicaciones (AHCIET), Madrid, 1993

Les Telecommunications Transatlantiques De La France
Pascal Griset
(XIXe-XXe SIECLES) Paris: Rive Droite, 1996

Lightning Wires: The Telegraph and China's Technological Modernization, 18601-890
Erik Baark
Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1997

Los días cubanos de Antonio Meucci y el nacimiento de la telefonía
[In Spanish]
*Basilio Catania, Fernando Ortiz (José Altshuler and Roberto Díaz Editors)
Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Cuba S.A. (ETECSA) y Sociedad Cubana de Historia de la Ciencia y la Tecnología (SCHCT), La Habana, 1998

Los Días Cubanos De Antonio Meucci Y El Nacimiento De La Telefonía
*José Altshuler and Roberto Díaz Martín (Eds.)
Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Cuba, S.A./ Sociedad Cubana de Historia de la Ciencia y La Tecnología, La Habana, 1998

Main Street Amusements: Movies and Commercial Entertainment in a Southern City, 1896-1930
Gregory A. Waller
Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1995

My Sisters Telegraphic : Women in the Telegraph Office, 1846-1950
Thomas C. Jepsen
Athens: Ohio University Press, 2000

Netizens: On the History and Impact of Usenet and the Internet
Michael Hauben and Ronda Hauben
Los Alamitos, CA
IEEE Computer Society Press
May 1997
ISBN 0-8186-7706-6
Library of Congress Number 97-5920

Off the Record: The Technology and Culture of Sound Recording in America
*David Morton
Rutgers University Press, forthcoming (February 2000)

Old Wires and New Waves
Alvin F. Harlow
New York: Arno Press, 1936

Selling the Air: A Critique of the Policy of Commercial Broadcasting in the United States
Thomas Streeter
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996

Signal Processing: The Emergence of a Discipline, 1948 to 1998
*Frederik Nebeker
IEEE History Center, 1998

Spreading the News: The American Postal System from Franklin to Morse
*Richard R. John,
Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1995; paperback, 1998

Telecommunications Competition: The Last Ten Miles
Ingo Vogelsang and Bridger M. Mitchell
Cambridge, Mass. and Washington, D.C.: MIT Press and AEI Press, 1997

The American Telegrapher : A Social History. 1860-1900
Edwin Gabler
New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1988

The IEEE Signal Processing Society: Fifty Years of Service, 1948 to 1998
*Frederik Nebeker
IEEE History Center, 1998

The Invisible Weapon: Telecommunications And International Politics, 1851-1945
* Daniel R. Headrick
New York: Oxford University Press, 1991

The Nature Of The Book: Print And Knowledge In The Making
Adrian Johns
Chicago: U.C. Pr., 1998

The Story of Telecommunications
George P. Oslin
Macon, GA: Mercer University Press, 1992

The Telegraph : A History of Morse's Invention and Its Predecessors in the
United States

Lewis Coe
Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 1993

Unglued Empire: The Soviet Experience with Communications Technologies
Gladys D. Ganley
Norwood, N.J.: Ablex, 1996

Universal Service: Competition, Interconnection, and Monopoly in the Making of the American Telephone System
Milton L. Mueller Jr.
Cambridge, Mass. and Washington, D.C.: MIT Press and AEI Press, 1997

The Victorian Internet: The Remarkable Story Of The Telegraph And The Nineteenth Century's On-Line Pioneers
Tom Standage
New York, 1998

Weaving the Web
Tim Berners-Lee
Harper, 1999

Zworykin, Pioneer of Television
Albert Abramson
Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 1995

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Books at websites

There is a list of telegraphy books on the Morse Magazine's web page at

Netizens:On the History and Impact of Usenet and the Internet
Michael Hauben and Ronda Hauben
IEEE Computer Society Press, 1997
(Also a draft is available online at http://www.columbia.edu/~hauben/netbook/)

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Books on history of computing

History of Computing: An Encyclopedia of the People and Machines that Made Computer History
Mark W. Greenia

A History of Modern Computing
Paul E. Ceruzzi
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, 1998

Engines of the Mind : The Evolution of the Computer from Mainframes to Microprocessors
Joel N. Shurkin

Computer : A History of the Information Machine
(The Sloan Technology Series)
Martin Campbell-Kelly, William Aspray (Contributor)

John von Neumann and the Origins of Modern Computing
William Aspray
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c1990

The Microprocessor : A Biography
(Silicon Valley Series)
Michael S. Malone

Howard Aiken : Portrait Of A Computer Pioneer
I. Bernard Cohen
Cambridge, MA : MIT Press, 1999

Innovating For Failure : Government Policy And The Early British Computer Industry
John Hendry
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c1989

Building IBM : Shaping An Industry And Its Technology
Emerson W. Pugh
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c1995

IBM's 360 and Early 370 Systems
Emerson W. Pugh, Lyle R. Johnson, and John H. Palmer
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c1991

A History Of Computing In The Twentieth Century : A Collection Of Essays
N. Metropolis, J. Howlett, Gian-Carlo Rota, editors
New York : Academic Press, 1980

A History Of Computing Technology (revised edition)
Michael R. Williams
Los Alamitos, Calif. : IEEE Computer Society Press, c1997


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