It’s hard to believe that less than three decades ago, cellphones could barely fit in briefcases, let alone our pockets. The cellphones of the 80s and 90s were clunky, bulky, and certainly not light. They were also expensive enough so that only select people could own them. What they were not, however, was the very first instance of mobile phone technology. The very first documented usage we have of wireless telephones is a patent in the early 20th Century. But how, exactly, did we go from phones that looked like bricks to today’s smartphones?


1. Meet Nathan Stubblefield

As history tells it, the very first cellphone was invented in the 1900s Kentucky by a man named Nathan Stubblefield. Stubblefield was a part-time farmer, part-time inventor who had been working on a wireless telephone for almost a decade by the time he was granted a patent for it. Unfortunately, by the time Stubblefield received his grant in 1908, faster technology that could span over further distances was already being made.

cellphones nathan stubblefield

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