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Stromberg Carlson 1543 Rotary Phone Early 1950s

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    Posted 5 months ago

    (1973 items)

    An old phone that has a lot of regional character. Note all the stickers with the emergency phone numbers along with Hughes Funeral Chapel. I would guess that this is from the Hughes Funeral Chapel which apparently still arounds in Yucaipa. It's an area San Bernardino County to the west of Palm Springs. Back in the 1950s it must have seemed like a warm version of Siberia. It is near the county line of Riverside and San Bernardino counties thus both phone numbers. Also note the ambulance numbers are different on the two stickers. This is an area along the foot of the San Bernardino Mountains where Fort Apache's fort is located.

    Now for the phone it is a Stromberg Carlson 1543 an early 1950s phone. It was Stromberg Carlson's answer to the Western Electric Model 500 the iconic phone from the 1950s through 1980s and then some. It is also known as the Cut Corner 500. Aside from the cut corners the cradle lowers and raises to hang up or get a dial tone. The 500 has those two little knobs while the cradle is stationary. This phone survived into the modular era as it has the connector for that. Also it has the pen holder. That kind of looks 70s to me.

    To wrap up it is a fine phone full of history. And stuff.


    1. Brunswick Brunswick, 5 months ago
      It is amazing how times have changed! It seemed it took forever to dial a number on one of these, especially if you had alot of 9s! Now we just hit a contact #!!

    2. ttomtucker ttomtucker, 5 months ago
      Back then that phone was installed by California Water & Telephone Company, My
      grandparents had one like yours installed in there home in Sun City, CA
    3. elanski elanski, 5 months ago
      It indeed has lots of character. I never understood why Britain made its number for Emergency services 999 by the time you waited for the dial to spin back round from 9 three times you could be dead.
    4. Newfld Newfld, 5 months ago
      Many small businesses kept this rotary type into the 70s-80s, I assume for "cost efficiency" - as a frequently temp secretary during those years, I can attest to using them :)
    5. fortapache fortapache, 5 months ago
      Thank you very much Brunswick. It is a bit quicker than having Sarah put through your call.

      Thank you very much ttomtucker. I am familiar with Sun City just south of Perris.

      Thank you very much elanski. Even worse is to have to dial the numbers on those stickers.

      Thank you very much Newfld. This old phone was probably still being used in the 80s by a secretary.
    6. fortapache fortapache, 5 months ago
      Thank you
    7. fortapache fortapache, 5 months ago
      Thank you Roycroftbooksfromme1.
    8. fortapache fortapache, 5 months ago
      Thank you Mrstyndall.

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