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Vintage Televisions

Not so long ago, TVs weren't the lightweighted, flat frames we have mounted on the wall today. No, they were heavy and big and took a big chunk from our livingrooms. They also broke down. A lot. My grandfather sold TVs back in the 1950s and he also sold replacement tubes, so go figure. And not so long ago, let's say about 80 years, only a few thousand Americans owned televisions. But we already started experimenting with television since the late 19th century, and the world's first electronic television was created in 1927 by Philo Taylor Farnsworth, a 21 year old inventor. Starting in high school, Philo began to think of a system that could capture moving images, transform those images into code, then move those images along radio waves to different devices.

Vintage televisions

Farnsworth was miles ahead of any mechanical television system invented to-date. Farnsworth’s system captured moving images using a beam of electrons (basically, a primitive camera). The first image ever transmitted by television was a simple line. Later, Farnsworth would famously transmit a dollar sign using his television after a prospective investor asked "When are we going to see some dollars in this thing, Farnsworth?" But television became available in experimental forms in the late 1920s, and it would still be several years before the new technology would be marketed to consumers. From there it's upill. Thirty years later, in the 1950s, television was the primary medium for influencing public opinion, and in the mid-1960s, color broadcasting was introduced in the US and most other developed countries.

But if you think everyone on this planet owns a TV, then you're wrong. In 2013, only 79% of the world's households owned a television set!

Collectible TVs