Married by Telegraph

It wouldn’t be June without some wedding news —

Electro – Matrimonial

Married by Telegraph 650 miles away.

[San Diego Union, April 26.]

Last evening Mr. W.H. Story, of the Signal Service, and Miss Clara E. Choate, of this city were married at Camp Grant, Arizona, the ceremony being performed in the presence of a large party in the telegraph office in San Diego. we believe this is the second instance on record of a marriage by telegraph. This manner of conducting the service was never impressive, and will be remembered with peculiar interest by all who were present. Miss Choate became engaged to the very worthy young gentleman with whom she will make the journey of life, some time ago. As he is in the service of the government, and the operator of the telegraph station at Camp Grant, he could not obtain leave to make so long a journey here for his wedding, and the young lady went out to him in Arizona. Upon arriving there, no clergyman could be had to perform the marriage ceremony, and in this exigency the plan of using the telegraph was decided upon.

At 8 o’clock last evening the friends of the family and friends of the bride, gathered at the telegraph office, corner of Fifth and D streets. There was a very large party of ladies and gentlemen. The officiating clergyman, Rev. Jonathan L. Mann of the M.E. Church being present, all being in readiness, the following message was sent by the father of the bride:

SAN DIEGO, April 24 — 8:30 P.M.
Greeting to our friends at Camp Grant. We are ready to proceed with the ceremony.
D. CHOATE, and party.

The answer at once came back:

CAMP GRANT, April 24th
To D. Choate and party. We are ready.
W.H. STORY.
CLARA E. CHOATE.

Then — Mr. Blythe, Chief Operator at the San Diego office, at the instrument — the service began.

Rev. Mr. Mann rose and said that they were about to attend the marriage ceremony of two friends six hundred and fifty miles distant, they could hardly hear the words spoken standing so far apart, but we could speak with telegraphic wire audibly enough.

Here followed the usual formula for the marriage service, the questions and responses being forwarded over the wire.

Numerous congratulatory messages were then sent by friends present, and appropriate replies received; in fact there was a real happy wedding party, with all the interchange of compliments and good wishes usual to such occasions, notwithstanding the little distance of 650 miles between the parties.

Reno Evening Gazette (Reno, Nevada) May 8, 1876

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