Jepsen, Thomas C. 1948- (Thomas Charles Jepsen)

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Jepsen, Thomas C. 1948- (Thomas Charles Jepsen)


Born June 1, 1948, in Rockford, IL; married Marsha Ann Hamman, June 7, 1969; children: Hans. Education: University of Colorado, B.A., 1986; graduate studies at North Carolina State University, 2000-03.


Home—Chapel Hill, NC. E-mail—[email protected].


Information technology professional, 1975—. Fujitsu Network Communications, Raleigh, NC, technical staff, 1996-2000, strategic marketing manager, 2000-01; North Carolina State University, Chapel Hill, instructor, beginning 2002; Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, scholar-in-residence, 2003. Senior member, Institute for Electrical and Electronic Engineering.


Association for Computing Machinery, Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, Society for the History of Technology, National Coalition of Independent Scholars.


Ma Kiley: The Life of a Railroad Telegrapher, Texas Western Press (El Paso, TX), 1997.

My Sisters Telegraphic: Women in the Telegraph Office, 1846-1950, Ohio University Press (Athens, OH), 2000.

(Editor) Java in Telecommunications: Solutions for Next Generation Networks, Wiley (New York, NY), 2001.

Distributed Storage Networks: Architecture, Protocols, and Management, Wiley (Hoboken, NJ), 2003.


Thomas C. Jepsen has worked as an information technology professional since 1975 and has taken an active interest in the history of technology since 1986. This background earned him a scholar-in-residence position at the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission in 2003. Jepsen published his first book, Ma Kiley: The Life of a Railroad Telegrapher, about the life of an early twentieth-century telegrapher, in 1997. Since then he has published books both on technical matters and on the history of technology—in particular, the telegraph.

It is this topic that led to the publishing of his second book, My Sisters Telegraphic: Women in the Telegraph Office, 1846-1950. Here, Jepsen covers the role that women played in the telegraphic industry not just in the United States, but also in Canada, Europe, and South America. Different chapters of the book cover topics as wide-ranging as female telegraphers in popular culture to the labor movement. Patricia A. Beaber, writing in Library Journal, felt that Jepsen's effort is "creative" and that the book is a "valuable history of women's employment in a technological profession." In a review for Isis, Janet Abbate believed that My Sisters Telegraphic "will be most useful to scholars interested in the intersection of technology and labor history." Abbate concluded that "Jepsen makes excellent use of his sources to provide a wealth of detail about the work practices of operators, much of it in the words of the women themselves."



Isis, March, 2002, Janet Abbate, review of My Sisters Telegraphic: Women in the Telegraph Office, 1846-1950, p. 92.

Labor History, February, 2000, Corinna A. Buchholz, review of Ma Kiley: The Life of a Railroad Telegrapher, p. 100.

Library Journal, December, 2000, Patricia A. Beaber, review of My Sisters Telegraphic, p. 159.


Humanities and Social Sciences Online, (April 3, 2006), profile of Thomas C. Jepsen.

Clew's Reviews Web site, (September 2, 2002), review of My Sisters Telegraphic.