The Francis Blake Laboratory Collection

It is with great pleasure that Techantiques has been chosen to research, document and offer what is believed to be one of the most if not the most significant privately owned collection of artifacts and ephemera relating to the initial development of the "talking telegraph" or telephone. Between 1873 until the time of his death, Francis Blake made one of the most significant contributions to landmark communication technology. His laboratory and machine shop and estate "Keewaydin" located at Weston, Mass. provided the setting where his genius, inventiveness and creativity flourished. It was the Blake Transmitter of 1877-78 which provided The Bell Co. with a commercially viable transmitter and enabled Bell to prevail ending the  protracted litigation with Edison and Western Union. Blake's transmitter patents were instrumental to Bell in producing a commercially viable telephone and system. Blake became a Director of the American Bell Telephone Company in 1878 and continued until his death in 1913. During the 1880's through the first decade of the 1900's, Blake continued his work on the transmitter and was granted several patents. He was an avid photographer and prominent member of electrical and scientific societies.

The creation of this site is in memory of Tom Rick. It was through Mr. Rick's efforts and vision that the artifacts have been preserved. In 1964 he obtained the collection from the Blake estate which had sat dormant in the Keewaydin laboratory un-touched from the time of Blake's death in 1913. The life of Tom Rick is another story to be told. He inspired many.   Contact information may be obtained at:

blakeportrb.jpg (18822 bytes) Francis Blake 1850-1913                                      blakeshoprb.jpg (27766 bytes) The Laboratory & Machine Shop

pedastletrans42rb.jpg (47914 bytes) The Collection Evolution of the Transmitter

The Collection  Communication Devices

    Telephones  Hook Boxes / Ringer Boxes Etc.           Miscellaneous