Inventor of the single-wire telegraph system, for which he received a patent for in 1847. He was the creator of the dot-dash Morse code and he made his living as a painter.
He supported himself while studying at Yale by selling his paintings and he graduated in 1810.
Missing the death of his wife, due to slow communication, inspired his revolutionary invention.
He had two wives, who were named Lucretia Pickering Walker and Sarah Elizabeth Griswold. He had seven children between them, five sons and two daughters.
In 1820, he painted a portrait of James Monroe.