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Ha! Should Congress ever need to be evacuated quickly, all that security would have to do is deliver a little note with those words to each congressman.
Haha. I have received a telegram exactly once -- when being informed that I had been accepted to the college I eventually attended. This college was all of five blocks or so from my home, and I had been taking courses there for two years already, so it was not a great surprise. But I suppose they wanted to do something a bit special. It was rather fun. And I certainly remember it.
I liked that Times piece on telegrams, too.I've been told by people of my parents' (WWII) generation that a Western Union deliveryman ringing your doorbell brought on an overwhelming sense of dread. Whether in wartime or not, my elders told me, a telegram delivery usually meant that someone had died.But thank heavens for notable exceptions. Looking through some old family photos and mementos, I found a telegram addressed to me on the day in 1959 when I was born. It had been sent by friends of my parents', and bore a sweet message welcoming me into the world.I seem to recall attempting something like that in the 1980s, on the occasion of a new arrival, but at that point, Western Union was calling them “Mailgrams,” or something similarly uninspiring.
The other funny joke telegraph to send is"IGNORE PREVIOUS TELEGRAPH - ALL MAY YET BE WELL"
Mark Twain's telegramme to Dick Cheney:"At least unlike Dan, you can spell quail. You just can't shoot it right."Come on, give me a break here. Like SNL would do it better.Cheers,Victoria
I really liked that piece. I wonder how the text-message has effected this generation's ability to write prose. Some of those telegrams are hilarious. Could you imagine Mark Twain using 8 for "eight," R for "are," or U for "you?"
I wish they'd tell us which people received the "Flee at once..." telegram.
One of the most chilling telegraph stories happened a few weeks after D-Day, in Bedford, VA:link
This story sounds fictional to me. However, it could have been suggested by a bit in one of the Sherlock Holmes stories: 'The "Gloria Scott" '. Holmes decodes a seemingly nonsensical message to read: "The game is up. Hudson has told all. Fly for your life."
Johnnymac said...This story sounds fictional to me. However, it could have been suggested by a bit in one of the Sherlock Holmes stories: 'The "Gloria Scott" '. In it Holmes decodes a seemingly nonsensical message to read: "The game is up. Hudson has told all. Fly for your life."
Apologies for the double post.
What is the quotation from the Titanic doeng in there?That message wasn't sent by telegraph.
Titanic message..sure it was! (sent by telegraph)...radiotelegraph, International Morse Code.
What a great article. Thanks for pointing it out. The "flee at once" telegrams were awfully clever. I also liked the "?" and "!" telegrams.
The attribution to two different authors is a classic indication of an urban legend. Also the key word "supposedly" from the article.
I am curious if anyone knows if the phrase "flee at once - all is discovered" was a phrase in popular use at some time? I have my doubts about the accuracy of the suggestion that Canon Doyle sent such a telegram. The main source of that phrase I believe (unless it once was in popular use) was in Robert Penn Warren's "All the King's Men" which was written after Doyle was dead.
While in contrast, only 20% of the general public believes the NSA is listening in on their phone conversations. The general public needs to get with the program, obviously.
I received an actual telegram from my parents the first time I went away from home. I was with my high school band competing in the Knoxville, Tn, Dogwood Arts Festival's band competition. We were staying at the aging (on its last legs, really) Andrew Johnson hotel. Western Union was certain my mother was confused about Tennessee history and changed the address to the Andrew Jackson hotel. I still got it before our first competition and it was a surprise and a great example of how my stoic Appalachian mother could be thoughtful and loving. I still have the telegram, yellowed withe age.
Fascinating article. I read the ,all found out, flee at once, attributed to doyle in john bakers book & it was stated as fact so did a little internet investigation and found this article & read all the interesting commentaries. Also i loved the telegram that looks original from louis armstrong to be cool as iim a big fan of his music!
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