Samuel F. B. Morse was an investor and innovator known for his improvements to the design and function of the early telegraph. Morse also enjoyed painting and became a well-known portrait artist.
After graduating from Yale in 1810, Morse studied painting in Europe. As a portrait artist, Morse gained some notoriety and helped to found the National Academy of Design, also serving as its first president. In 1832, Morse began working on his version of an electric telegraph. Morse's telegraph was the first device to send messages using electricity. Telegraph receivers on the other end of Morse's electric telegraph converted the electrical impulses to dots and dashes on paper. These dots and dashes became known as Morse Code.