123-Year-Old Doll Could be First Ever Commercial Recording

The childhood jingle “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,” is be coming bigger than your child’s favorite bedtime song.

According to CNN, a recent recording has been recovered from the first-ever talking doll, which could also be the first commercial recording ever.

The 12-second recording is seen on a cylinder phonograph, which was produced for Thomas Edison. Edison planned to start a talking-doll business, but his efforts failed in 1988. Jerry Fabris, the Thomas Edison National Historic Park curator, thought the recording was never there since its outdated technology.

The article says that Fabris saw an engineer, Carl Haber, giving a presentation on “a new 3-D scanning technology for old records at a conference.” Fabris then brought the tin recording to the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Haber and a partner successfully reproduced the audio from the doll, which was not present at the scene.

“I was hoping to hear Edison, but I was happy to hear any kind of voice,” Fabris told CNN. Fabris also said he was really excited when it happened.

Patrick Feaster, a historian of the early phonograph said, “This is the first instance of someone doing it to earn some money, and that’s a pretty big first.”

The first sound was recorded in 1860, when Frenchman Edouard-Leon Scott de Martinville accomplished the feet. A French printer and bookseller, Martinville invented the photoautotroph, the earliest known recording device in 1857.