Association for Recorded Sound Collections honors 1878 book
Report by Patrick Feaster, ARSC:
On WDAVH 2015, the First Sounds Initiative and the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) celebrate the success of their joint nomination of "Humanity's First Recordings of its Own Voice: The Phonautograms of Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville (c.1853-1860)" for inscription in UNESCO's Memory of the World Register by releasing an electronic facsimile edition of Scott's book, Le Probleme de la parole s'crivant elle-meme.
This book—self-published in 1878—represents Scott's final effort to set the record straight about his pioneering work in sound recording for future generations, combining a group of older documents with an introductory essay that spells out their significance in light of Edison's phonograph.
Out of only four known surviving exemplars of the book, our facsimile is based on the one passed down and preserved within the inventor's own family. We are pleased to honor Scott's legacy on this occasion by making his own book about the phonautograph widely and freely available for the first time.
Cover of Le Probleme de la parole s'crivant elle-meme (1878)