|George Edward Gouraud|
Gouraud as caricatured by Ape (Carlo Pellegrini) in Vanity Fair, April 1889
|Born||June 30, 1842|
|Died||February 20, 1912|
|Place of birth||Niagara Falls, New York|
|Place of death||Vevey, Switzerland|
United States of America|
United States Army|
|Unit||55th Massachusetts Infantry|
American Civil War|
*Battle of Honey Hill
|Awards||Medal of Honor|
George Edward Gouraud (30 June 1842 - 20 February 1912) was an American Civil War recipient of the Medal of Honor who later became famous for introducing the new Edison Phonograph cylinder audio recording technology to England in 1888.
Gouraud fought for the United States Army during the Civil War, and received the Medal of Honor for bravery as a Captain with the 55th Massachusetts on November 30, 1864. He was later brevetted Lieutenant Colonel.
He later acted as an agent for Thomas Edison in London. As an enthusiast of new electric inventions, he had many such gadgets installed in his house at Beulah Hill, Upper Norwood, in South London, which became known as "Little Menlo" after Menlo Park, New Jersey where Edison's company was situated in the United States.
In 1888, Thomas Edison sent his "Perfected" Phonograph to Gouraud in London and on 14 August 1888, Gouraud introduced the phonograph to London in a press conference, including the playing of a piano and cornet recording of Arthur Sullivan's "The Lost Chord", one of the first recordings of music ever made.
A series of parties followed, introducing the phonograph to members of society at "Little Menlo". Sullivan was invited to one of these on 5 October 1888. After dinner, he recorded a speech to be sent to Thomas Edison, saying, in part:
|“||I can only say that I am astonished and somewhat terrified at the result of this evening's experiments: astonished at the wonderful power you have developed, and terrified at the thought that so much hideous and bad music may be put on record forever. But all the same I think it is the most wonderful thing that I have ever experienced, and I congratulate you with all my heart on this wonderful discovery.||”|
- "Civil War (A-L); Gouraud, George Edward entry". Medal of Honor recipients. United States Army Center of Military History. August 6, 2009. http://www.history.army.mil/html/moh/civwaral.html. Retrieved July 13, 2010.
- "The 1888 Crystal Palace recordings. Enter Colonel Gouraud". http://www.webrarian.co.uk/crystalpalace/crystal05.html. Retrieved October 5, 2010.
- Michael Kilgarriff, "HENRY IRVING and the PHONOGRAPH: BENNETT MAXWELL". http://www.theirvingsociety.org.uk/phono.htm. Retrieved October 5, 2010.
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