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American Telephone & Telegraph: The Art of Telephony, 1916

From Shore to Shore

With the support of his colleagues, Theodore Vail resigned his position within American Bell in 1885. He did not leave the telephone industry; rather, he focused all his efforts on the development of a long distance subsidiary of American Bell. The subsidiary was incorporated and named the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) in 1885. By 1892, Vail and his colleagues had succeeded in building an interconnected long-distance telephone network which stretched from New York to Chicago. This distance represented the technological limit of the wiring in use in the late 1800s. With the development of two new technologies, the long-distance network would eventually span from coast to coast. These two key new developments were termed loading coils and Audions.