05 May 2009


I happened to be flipping through an old magazine this morning (cover date September 1985) and I noticed a picture of one of those old rotary-dial phones everyone had back then. It attracted my attention for some reason and I realized that, even though I'd used such phones years ago, I couldn't remember now exactly how they worked. Did you put your finger in the first hole and turn the dial until your finger was on the number you wanted, or.....


Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Yes....each finger hole has a number...I believe "0" thru "9" and you turn to the right until a metal tab stopped your finger, proceed to your next digit,etc. I figure the picture may be older then the cover ...because I had touch tone phones at home at least between the mid to late 70's for sure. I remember when I lived in Brooklyn and Buffalo(NY) they still had phone number's that begun with letters from the alphabet, like for "Lakeside" , "Flatbush" (2 letter abbreviation's)etc. And also what they called "party lines". Been awhile heh?

Later Guy......

05 May, 2009 09:33  
Blogger mendip said...

I loved those phones, they made it feel as if you were actually doing something to help the process along. The 2 letter designations were usually referred to as "exchanges", and were pretty much gone by 1970. Party lines were quite weird (to me, at least), with different rings signalling calls to the various lines. It's strange how we still have ads and folks saying to "dial" the phone, when almost no one does, and few under the age of 40 have ever done so.

05 May, 2009 16:35  
Blogger Prash said...

I really pity people who were doing secretary or reception desk in those days... their fingers would've swollen at the end of each day !

05 May, 2009 19:27  
Blogger Blurber said...

I still have a rotary-dial phone, although I don't use it. I think the sound is better.

06 May, 2009 09:06  
Blogger Quantum_Flux said...

Neat! Ah all the things that you can use a dial for, ah yes, that could make for some halfbaked retro-novelty items indeed.

06 May, 2009 21:47  
Blogger Rita said...

Those old phones seemed so much more substantial. Like... cast iron frying pans. Remember, how they kept us tethered? Technology is a wonderful thing.

07 May, 2009 01:03  

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