The National Museum of Scotland holds many non-traditional examples of mass media over the history of time -beginning with painted pictures and symbols on rocks to having the internet at our fingertips. Here is a small look into the evolution of communication and media.


This is a mummy case from the 19th century that belonged to a senior priest. These Egyptian coffins show pictures and symbols communicating what kind of live the person lived. Because of ancient Egyptian pictures and hieroglyphics, we can learn stories about what kind of people they were.
This is a Columbian printing press that was invented in 1813 in America, but it was not a popular device in the media industry there. In 1860, the printing press was introduced to Scotland in Edinburgh. Edinburgh was, at the time, very big in the publishing industry. This printing press was used in newspaper production.
in the 1800’s, military men often communicated with each other in morse code, using heliographs or light. This device contains a mirror that deflected the sun light over several kilometers to signal to allies.
In the 19th century, seamen would communicate using flags. Each flag held a different meaning and if an outsider were to discover a meaning, the seamen would change the meaning of that flag.
The first postage stamp was invented in 1940. It’s original name was the Penny Black. Many people around this time sent letters in the mail because it was fast and inexpensive for all people.
About a decade after the postage stamp was invented, came the pillar box -or as we say now, mailbox.
The first videophone was invented in the 1960’s but not many people bought them because they did not like the idea of being sen while talking on the phone. These devices also sold for about 900 pounds each.
Today, almost all people have a smartphone that they use daily. This device allows anyone to take photos, email, text, call, and more at any time of the day. People now have the world wide web at their fingertips and can communicate with almost anyone at any time.