Friday, July 02, 2010

Old Telephone

Picked up this old telephone at the thrift store today.


Interestingly enough there’s a twin of this phone in the Benton County museum. I’m guessing they came out of the same place, but that’s just a guess.


Not really ergonomic.


“Property of American Tel & Tel Co 323 Pat USA Jan 14 191?”


“Western Electric”


They really want you to know who owns it.


MIssing the bell, if it had one.


Old wire bundles.


The bottom…

If anyone knows about this model I’d love to hear about it. Googling hasn’t turned up much beyond the museum link above.

EDIT: My friend Kent says: "With no dial it came out of the Julian, Corvallis, or Benton Hotel, if local. That way it was hooked to a switch board. When the reciever was lifted a light came on at the switch board, the operator then plugged a 1/4 phone plug into that hole and asked what number they wanted. The switch board operator had a dial, and dialed the number wanted, then plugged the lines together. If they were real nice they unplugged their line or else they didn't and listened to the conversation. Either way when the phone was hung up the light went out and they unplugged the line."


Ben, N1WBV said...

That's a Western Electric 553 or 653 wall phone. There should be some kind of markings on the box giving the model # and the date.

Your friend Kent is right on the money as to how the phone worked. The "323" on the mouthpiece indicates it's a Western Electric model 323 transceiver.

Fernando said...

Hello Nick,

I learned to fly in a gliding club near Buenos Aires in 1969. There was a telephone with a crank on the side.
When you wanted to call (home for example, I was 15) you turned the crank two or three times.
The operator would ring back and asked you which number you wanted to call. Then you hung up, and a while later the operator would ring back with your call.

Best regards,


Anonymous said...

We have the same phone & the date says Jan 14 1913.