Elisha Gray was a resident of Highland Park, Illinois from 1871 until his death in 1901. An electrical engineer and inventor, Gray received more than 70 patents. He co-founded the Western Electric Company in 1872. Gray gave a public demonstration of the telephone at the Presbyterian Church in Highland Park in December 1874. On November 15, 1878, a banquet was held in Highland Park to honor Professor Gray, who many believed was the true inventor of the telephone. The Committee of Arrangements prepared a transcript of congratulatory remarks delivered at the event. The collection includes photographs of Professor Gray and his wife, and the Gray Electric Building, constructed in Highland Park in 1892.
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