Alexander Graham Bell (March 3, 1847 – August 2, 1922), the inventor of the telephone, was a distinguished scientist and innovator.

His father taught elocution to the deaf and young Bell became almost obsessed with the science of sound, especially after his mother began to lose her hearing.

Bell followed his father’s footsteps and began a career in teaching people how to speak, but while pursuing his teaching profession, he got this “outrageous” idea that he could invent a machine that would send the human voice over wires.

He experimented with a telegraph that could send more than one message at once by using different sound frequencies. He did not have much success with his invention until in 1874 when he met Thomas Watson, an electrical engineer who helped him with his work.

On March 10, 1876, Bell got his telephone to work! This date marks the day when Bell successfully made the first phone call in history. Needless to say that after a few demonstrations, thousands of people wanted one.

But the telephone isn’t Bell’s single invention – he held 18 patents in his name alone and shared another 12 with collaborators.

Here are 18 Alexander Graham Bell quotes on the role of perseverance in achieving success.

You cannot force ideas. Successful ideas are the result of slow growth. Ideas do not reach perfection in a day, no matter how much study is put upon them.

A man, as a general rule, owes very little to what he is born with — a man is what he makes of himself.

Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to focus.

What this power is I cannot say; all I know is that it exists and it becomes available only when a man is in that state of mind in which he knows exactly what he wants and is fully determined not to quit until he finds it.

The only difference between success and failure is the ability to take action.

A man’s own judgment should be the final appeal in all that relates to himself.

The achievement of one goal should be the starting point of another.

I do not recognize the right of the public to break in the front door of a man’s private life in order to satisfy the gaze of the curious… I do not think it right to dissect living men even for the advancement of science.

Before anything else preparation is the key to success.

Great discoveries and improvements invariably involve the cooperation of many minds.

Night is a more quiet time to work. It aids thought.

The nation that secures control of the air will ultimately control the world.

God has strewn our paths with wonders and we certainly should not go through life with our eyes shut.

Leave the beaten track behind occasionally and dive into the woods. Every time you do you will be certain to find something you have never seen before.

The inventor looks upon the world and is not contented with things as they are. He wants to improve whatever he sees, he wants to benefit the world; he is haunted by an idea.

After innumerable failures I finally uncovered the principle for which I was searching, and I was astounded at its simplicity.

Man is an animal which, alone among the animals, refuses to be satisfied by the fulfillment of animal desires.

The day will come when the man at the telephone will be able to see the distant person to whom he is speaking.