Inventor Lee De Forest Dead at 87

July 1, 1961 - Dr. Lee De Forest, inventor and early pioneer in radio and the development of sound-on-film recording used in motion pictures, died today at his home in Hollywood. He was 87 years old. Dr. De Forest had over 180 patents, but also a tumultuous career - he boasted that he made, then lost, 4 fortunes. He was involved in several major patent lawsuits and spent a substantial part of his income on legal bills. His most famous invention, in 1906, was the three-element "Audion" vacuum tube, the first practical amplification device. This was the foundation of the field of electronics, making possible radio broadcasting, long distance telephone lines, and talking motion pictures among countless other applications.

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