No. 368.
Mr. Astor to Mr. Frelinghuysen.

No. 8.]

Sir: I have the honor to report that the unveiling of a tablet commemorative of the sojourn in Rome of Samuel F. B. Morse, the inventor of electric telegraphy, took place yesterday. The ceremony was interesting as being the first time the honor has been accorded to the memory of an American. A considerable assemblage was present, and addresses were made by Mr. Placidi, representing the municipality, and Mr. D’Amico, director general of telegraphs, representing the minister of public works. In reply I tendered the thanks of my countrymen to the [Page 598]Italian Government and the municipality of Rome for their graceful recognition of American genius.

The tablet is affixed to the house No. 17 Via dei Prefetti, and bears an inscription of which the following is a translation:

S. P. Q. R. In this house from the 20th of February, 1825, to January 5, 1826, resided Samuel Finley Breese Morse, the inventor of the electric telegraph. He was born in Charlestown, April 27, 1791, and died in New York April 2, 1872.

I have, &c.,

WILLIAM WALDORF ASTOR.