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Antique Servant/Butler Bell Box

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    Posted 3 years ago

    (59 items)

    Here's a great item that "most" of us have only perhaps seen in an old movie. Unless you've been a Butler, or Servant, or born into great wealth, this piece of history will likely be something you've never seen. In any case, this is an annunciator for "service staff" of a household. This box with bell would most likely be placed in a central area of the servants quarters, or kitchen area to alert the staff when they were being summoned by their "employer". This one is set up for 10 rooms. In each of those 10 rooms there would be a push button. When the button was pushed, the bell would ring, and the arrow would point to the appropriate room where your services were required. Sounds like one step above slavery to me, but I'm sure a more modern version still exists today for those who have everything!

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    1. AnythingObscure AnythingObscure, 3 years ago
      CanCollect, this item is also termed an "annunciator". Besides duty in wealthy homes with servants, other often much larger variations (systems) were used in hotels, offices, and similar type places for generally the same sorts of reasons -- summoning somebody from somewhere else. Google will be your friend in learning much more about what they are and how they worked and were used! :-) :-) :-)
    2. CanCollect CanCollect, 3 years ago
      AnythingObscure: Thank you once again for passing on your knowledge! Always appreciated!
    3. keramikos, 2 years ago
      CanCollect, Cool. :-)

      Yes, an annunciator. I myself didn't know what they were called until a few months ago when somebody else posted one, and then I kind of went down a rabbit hole on a related issue (the building in which it had originally been installed):

      Here are more:

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