People started collecting phones shortly after Alexander Graham Bell patented them in 1876. Some of those early handmade wood telephones from the 1880s (e.g. those marked Charles Williams Jr. or American Bell) are among the most prized finds for telephone collectors.
Collectible antique and vintage telephones basically fall into three groups. Wood wall phones, which were produced from 1876 up through World War II, have lost much of their appeal (except those earliest models) as few collectors still remember growing up with them. Candlestick phones, produced from the 1890s through the 1920s, are still in great demand, especially the earliest turn of the century nickel-plated models.
Desk sets, including most phones after 1930, are the bulk of the hobby today, and range from early 1920s models with ringer boxes to the groovy 1960s and 70s Ericofon, Princess and Trimline models. The most commonly found phones are rotary dial models such as the Western Electric 202s (1930s), 302s (1940s-50s), and 500 sets (1960s and 70s)...
While Western Electric is the big name for many American collectors, makers like Automatic Electric, Kellogg Switchboard and Supply, Stromberg Carlson and others are also in high demand. Many telephone collectors also focus on related items such as telephone signs and switchboards.
Interviews & Articles
How did I get started collecting antique telephones? As a kid I always liked phones, using them, talking on them. As a teenager I … [more]
Every collector dreams of being the person to uncover cities of lost gold, the next Tutankhamen's tomb, or if not that, an overgro… [more]
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- Telecommunications Heritage Group (UK)
- Australasian Telephone Collectors Society, Inc.
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Source: Google News
Five Step Plan To Attract Next-Generation Manufacturing TalentManufacturing Business Technology, May 24th
Reminds me of when my kid saw grandma's rotary phone last year and asked, “what is that?” In most of our customer visits, decisive action is being taken, evident through the fact that they are deploying (or have deployed) modern, state-of-the-art...Read more
CM wants Sarawak Museum to be in sync with changing timesThe Borneo Post, May 23rd
REKINDLING MEMORY: Taib (middle) reminisces the good old days of using this antique telephone model as he browses through the exhibition booths prior to launching the event. At left is Ibrahim. — Photo by Chimon Upon. KUCHING: The time has come...Read more
Review: Pump RoomChicagoPride.com, May 23rd
The entrance hall is lined with photos of the various celebrities that dined in the famous "Booth One", and as a tribute, a replica of a vintage phone is still found next to said booth. But, that's about as nostalgic as it gets. The new Pump Room is...Read more
The Evolution of Hand Gestures: Why Do Some Die Out and Others Endure?The Atlantic, May 22nd
Among my friends, this gesture has supplanted the hand-cradle, pinky to mouth and thumb to ear; the imaginary cups to ear and mouth; and the finger twirling the air, as if dialing a rotary phone. Today, we may be more likely to move our fingers across...Read more
Flip 'em or trade 'em, baseball cards remain at the heart of the old game ...Plain Dealer, May 22nd
Someday, there might be 3D holograms instead of baseball cards. But while some paper products go the way of gaslight and rotary telephones, baseball cards -- even after the grimy, sweaty, greasy fingers of childhood "doctored" those cards the way...Read more
BKLYN Designs returns with rotary phone lamps, reclaimed wood everythingMother Nature Network (blog), May 13th
Essentially, this involves designer Tyagi Schwartz transforming flea market junk — cigar boxes, plastic trucks, gas cans, tins, electric mixers, CB radios, and old rotary phones … lots of lots of old rotary phones — into whimsical lamps. Each...Read more
Apple to Classify iPhone as 'Vintage' PhoneIndiatimes.com, May 3rd
Follow @indiatimes · Indiatimes Login Facebook LoginTwitter Login. Search. Shopping Home News Entertainment LifeStyle Technology Boyz Toyz Sports Top Lists IPL 2013 · Home Technology Mobile Apple to Classify iPhone as 'Vintage' Phone. Comment...Read more
Rotary phones and other ancient stuffEscanaba Daily Press, April 25th
Rotary phones and other ancient stuff. April 25, 2013. By Andy Heller , Daily Press. Save | Comments (2) | Post a comment |. FLINT - Now that we're past 50, I've noticed that the world wastes no opportunity to let the lovely yet formidable Marcia and I...Read more