The phonograph was invented in 1877 by Thomas Edison. While working to improve other inventions, he managed to find a way to record sound on tinfoil-coated cylinders. He made two machines, one for recording and one for playback. Edison's recording machine had a mouth piece, when spoken into, the vibrations from the sound were imprinted into the tinfoil cylinder with a needle. The very first words he had spoken into the mouth piece were "Mary had a little lamb."
Thomas Edison continued to think of different uses for the phonograph, such as, phonographic books for the blind, letter writing and dictation, family record making, clocks that announce the time, music boxes, and more. Even uses he hadn't thought of himself had become reality, like soldiers taking music with them off to war.
When the US got involved in World War I in 1917, Edison decided to create a special model for the US army. Edison wanted to support the soldiers and help cheer them up with music while they were on duty, he even made an audio clip of himself saying how proud he is of them and reminding them of the extensive sacrifices that they have made to serve their country.
When the phonograph was first invented in 1877, people were amazed and impressed. Back in about 1905 recorded music was only just coming out, before being able to purchase vinyls, people could only listen to music if it was performed live. For the first time, families were able to hear “performers they could not see and music they could not normally bring into their homes."
The invention of the phonograph impacted the US with it's ability to play music in homes, it gave people a way to listen to music without going to a live show. It helped relax American soldiers in the war, and provided a way to connect with people through recorded messages.