The invention of the telephone is credited to 19th century Scottish-born inventor Alexander Graham Bell. At the time, his contemporary Elisha Gray independently developed a telephone. Bell was able to beat Gray to acquiring a patent.
Gray subsequently took Bell to court, claiming that Bell stole Gray's design and passed it off as his own patent. Without sufficient proof, Gray lost his case and Bell went on to be credited as the inventor of the device.
The first successfully transmitted telephone speech was made on March 10, 1876. Bell's message to his assistant was, "Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you."