World’s First Answering Machine

Joseph Zimmerman of Brookfield, WI died recently at the age of 92. But he left behind a significant invention. In 1948, when the Army Signal Corps veteran couldn’t afford a secretary, he rigged up an 80 pound device that used a lever to lift a phone receiver. A 78 r.p.m. record player then conveyed a personal greeting, and a wire recorder captured the caller’s 30 second message. Zimmerman’s “electronic secretary” as he called it, was the world’s first telephone answering machine.

Today answering machines and voice mail are a key part of daily life. But an answering machine only works if you’re not on the phone. If you want to make sure you don’t miss any calls, you might invest in call forwarding to a voice mail or a cell phone if your number is busy.

Telephone tag wastes lots of time. Let’s conquer it with technology that makes us more effective for the Lord and redeems the time.

Rick Grubbs is best known as the host of “Redeeming the Time,” a one-minute radio program featured on hundreds of radio outlets around the world. He has spoken thousands of times on Biblical time management in all 50 states and 26 other countries. He is the author of the book “Morning Momentum: God’s plan for launching an unstoppable day”. He and his wife Carrie live in Salisbury NC with several of their 12 children.

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