Saturday, February 12, 2011


On the right is the type of phone we had when they finally ran the phone lines out into the boondocks from town.  We had a different style crank phone before we got this style.  There were only about 3 or 4 places with phones in out little town at first.  We had one because my dad worked on the RR and we had a phone in case he was needed to work on the tracks for some reason after normal work hours (derailment or shoveling out switches and other stuff in the winter).  With the first phone we had, the phone lines ran along the RR tracks and the operator was in a town over 40 miles away.  A call to the nearest town was a long distance call and all local calls cost a dime. .
When they ran the phone lines out from town, we had ten houses on a line.  There were only three or four lines coming to our area.

Over the years the phones changed, first it was the rotary dial and eventually the party lines were eliminated.  At one time we had a long cord on the handset so you could move around some while talking on the phone and later we got a cordless phone.

Now we have the cellphones on the right.  No longer do we have to be home to use the phone, but also we aren't really ever away from the phone, except when traveling thru a dead zone.  Or if the phone is turned off.


  1. I can remember having to know how many rings meant the call was for our house. At another place we lived we shared the line with 5 other houses, and one woman would not get off the line. I think she lived with the reciever attached to her ear.

    I have always hated the damn things. And even though I have one to carry around, I very rarely turn it on. Drives my wife crazy.

  2. We were 2 long rings. I still remember that. There were little phone companies all over the place and it was "long distance" between them. On a party line, a few people listened to other's calls. Predated the Patriot Act by quite a few decades. My grandfather one time caught habitual rubberer by saying in the middle of his conversation, "Mrs ___, your potatoes are burning". "They are not...OH, my:. Click.

  3. By contemporary standards, the cell phones shown are antiques, too, because they're not "smart." The only thing we do with them is make or receive phone calls: no photos, no texting, no wandering around the intertubes.

  4. "Number, please", the operator would say. "One, please", is what we'd say if calling the doctor. Grandma was 253. This was all through the '60's too up in da UP.

  5. i may hate cell phones but I really hated those party lines.


No Anonymous comments,it's not that hard to think of a nom de plume.