How to Transmit News Photos by Wire—in 1937

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Telephotography was a thrilling new technology in the 1930s, allowing newspapers to send images across the country at lightning speed. Photographs were scanned from a rotating cylinder and transmitted electronically via telephone lines. Courtesy of the Prelinger Archive, this informative film was produced by Chevrolet, and shamelessly includes a highly entertaining stunt in which a small airplane takes off from the roof of a car. The event, of course, is the subject of the news photograph that must be rushed to the paper via wire. 

For more films from the Prelinger Archive, visit http://www.archive.org/details/prelinger.

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Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg is the executive producer for video at The AtlanticMore

Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg's work in media spans documentary television, advertising, and print. As a producer in the Viewer Created Content division of Al Gore's Current TV, she acquired and produced short documentaries by independent filmmakers around the world. Post-Current, she worked as a producer and strategist at Urgent Content, developing consumer-created and branded nonfiction campaigns for clients including Cisco, Ford, and GOOD Magazine. She studied filmmaking and digital media at Harvard University, where she was co-creator and editor in chief of H BOMB Magazine.

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