My Phone Page

My Favorite Things About Bell System Phones

Phone-related web sites

A Tribute to the Telephone- a great web site with technical info and resources on phones
Bell System Memorial- a tribute to Ma Bell
Paul F's informative page on old telephones
Classic Rotary Phones Forum
PhoneCo Inc.- A great source for phones and parts
Phone Trips - An interesting page with tons of sound files of phone switching systems (note: it is best not to visit this site unless you have lots of free time!)
My page on custom number tags for rotary dial centers

For nearly a hundred years, telephone service in much of the United States was provided by the Bell System (also known as "Ma Bell"). Most of the phones for the Bell System were built by Western Electric, and were leased to Bell Systems customers (in the late 1970s, customers were given the option to purchase their phones, but most of these phones haven't been owned by AT&T since the breakup of Ma Bell in 1984). Among the phones made by Western Electric were the candlestick phones, the 100/200 series, the 300-series, the 500/1500/2500 series, Princess phones, Trimline phones, and the Design Line series, as well as various types of payphones. Most of the phones seen "in the wild" are of the single-line type; however, variations were made to be used on party lines, as well as multi-line phone systems. Unlike most consumer products, these phones were built like tanks, and made to last a very long time. In an era where quality almost always takes a backseat to quantity, these phones stick out like a sore thumb. They are quite rugged, and rarely break down. While most of them are quite utilitarian in appearance (a notable exception to this was the "Design Line" series introduced late in the life of the Bell System), they do seem to have a sense of style about them. Of course, Ma Bell wasn't truly the only phone system around back in the old days; independent telephone companies could be found in remote areas, often employing archaic dialing methods such as manual (pick up the phone, listen for the operator, and tell her which number you wanted to call) or party line (several people sharing one telephone line; often prone to snooping by the other people on the line); often, phones made by other companies such as Automatic Electric or Stromberg-Carlson were used in these systems. Around the world, different telephone systems all had their own phones, with the designs varying from country to country. My collection of vintage phones seems to have stemmed from my onetime fascination with rotary-dial phones, so many of them are rotary. All of them are working to some degree or another.

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my first vintage phone, a turquoise Western Electric Trimline desk phone which was given to me by a relative. This phone has a 4-prong plug, and I wired it so that the dial lights when picked up. Originally, this phone had been wired so it would not ring, and therefore wouldn't be detected by Bell Systems Ringer Equivalency tests. I have since managed to reconnect its ringer successfully, and it now works like a charm (though the dial seems to be a bit finicky on the digital phone system).
MODEL: AD-1/220A (base/handset)
DATED: 9-68
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my second vintage phone, a light beige Western Electric 500 desk phone which I got at a yard sale for free. It was converted to modular sometime in the late 1970s or early 1980s. Both the handset and case have "AT&T" molded in the nameplate area, which is a bit odd. Unfortunately, both of its internal modular jacks are broken. It has become a parts phone, lending pieces to other phones which need them.
MODEL: 500D
DATED: 11-58
SOUND: DIAL | RING (coming soon [I hope])

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my third vintage phone, a black Western Electric 500 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for 25 cents. This is the one which got me into collecting these phones. It's an early model which has a metal fingerwheel and was originally meant to be hardwired; I have converted it to modular through an external junction box coupled to a modular plug, so the phone itself is original for the most part. When I got it, the dial center and the area between the handset cradles was covered with stickers, but I cleaned them off. I replaced what was left of the original number tag with a custom one I made. This phone is by far my favorite out of all my 500-series Bell System phones.
MODEL: 500D
DATED: 9-62
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fourth vintage phone, a black Western Electric 554 wall phone which I bought on eBay for around $10. This is another early model which has a metal fingerwheel. It is a bit scuffed up, missing its number card retainer, and has been somewhat-crudely converted to 4-prong, but otherwise it appears to be in good shape. It has not been fitted with a modular backplate like my other 554, so I will need to find another way to mount it.
MODEL: 554B
DATED: 11-58
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fifth vintage phone, an ivory Western Electric 554 wall phone which I bought at a yard sale for $1. This phone has been converted to modular, and fits onto a standard wallplate. It was originally a neighbor's phone, and still had their phone number on its number tag which I have replaced with a custom one.
MODEL: 554BMP (originally 554B)
DATED: 6-58 (228A backplate dated 11-77)
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my sixth vintage phone, a moss green Western Electric 500 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $2.50. This phone has been converted to modular, like my beige 500. It had some stickers on the dial and the handset, but I cleaned them off. Unlike my other 500-series phones, this one has a plastic center spindle on the rotary dial; this makes it easier to take the dial off, but it also makes it seem a bit more flimsy than the metal-center 500s I have.
MODEL: 500DM (originally 500D)
DATED: 7-63
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my seventh vintage phone, a black Western Electric 302 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. It was very dirty when I first acquired it, but it has cleaned up fairly nicely. This phone works well, and is in pretty good shape (though the paint on the metal housing is chipped). It has straight cloth cords on both the handset and line cords, which makes it different from my other WE desk phones. At first, I was unable to tell which of the line cord wires went to each terminal of my hardwired-to-modular converter due to the colors of the wires at the end of the line cord having faded and/or darkened, but studying them in a better light enabled me to tell which wire was which. So far, I haven't been able to find any model information on this phone (the bottom plate is blank for the most part).
MODEL: 302
DATED: 1-46
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my eighth vintage phone, a beige Western Electric 500 desk phone which I bought at a yard sale for $2. It appears to be in fairly good shape; it's only apparent flaw was a sticker in the center of the dial (which I was able to remove). Like most of my other 500s, this one has been converted to modular, although the jacks on this one are in good shape. Unlike my other 500 phones, this one has an small engraved arrow pointing to HI underneath the ringer volume control, whereas the other ones simply have a painted arrow which points to LOUD. I have been unable to determine which model this is, as the bottom plate is blank for the most part, but it appears to be a newer phone.
MODEL: unknown (appears to be a 500DM)
DATED: 3-74 (ringer; either third quarter 1974 or March 1974)
SOUND: DIAL | RING

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my ninth vintage phone, a black Stromberg-Carlson model 1443F desk phone. This phone looks like a cross between a 302 and a 500, having the general shape of a 500 phone, but with the rounded corners and handset style of the 302 (even the dial itself is a combination of the two, having a plastic fingerwheel, but a metal number card retainer ring). Currently, this phone works to some degree (haven't tested to see if it rings or not), but the dial doesn't work right (at first it was sluggish, but I've since oiled it, and now it mis-dials frequently). I'm hoping to send the dial off to be repaired by Steve Hilsz.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my tenth vintage phone, a blue Western Electric model 1013 test-set telephone. Often called "butt-sets," these interesting phones were used by telephone linemen to check the condition of the phone line they were working on. As with many butt-sets, this one has seen better days; there's a large crack in the case below the mouthpiece, and the belt-clip is broken. However, it dials out fairly well, and it's problems shouldn't be hard to fix.
DIAL (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my eleventh vintage phone, a black Western Electric Trimline wall phone which I bought at a yard sale for $1. This is my first vintage phone which has a touch-tone dial. Unlike my other trimline phone, this one is modular, complete with a mini 228A-style backplate. This phone works, but the ringer has been disabled.
MODEL: AC-2P/2220C (base/handset)
DATED: 5-75 (backplate)/2-80 (handset)
RING (coming soon)

PHOTO COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my twelfth vintage phone, a black Automatic Electric model 90 wallphone which I was sent for cost of postage alone. Unlike the standard WE 554, the AE90 has the handset hook on the side, making for something looking akin to a payphone. This phone currently has stickers on the case, and the dial acts sluggish (I will probably send it to be fixed by Steve Hilsz along with the dial for my Stromberg-Carlson 1443F). I have yet to test this phone.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my thirteenth vintage phone, a white Automatic Electric model 90 wallphone which I was sent for cost of postage alone. As received, this phone had stickers on the case, but it's been cleaned up, and works fairly well (though the handset hook and dial tend to act a bit sluggish).
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fourteenth vintage phone, a moss green Western Electric Trimline desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $5. Unlike my other rotary trimline phone, this one has a built-in LED to light the dial, which means that it does not need a wall-wart transformer. Also unlike my other rotary trimline phone, this one is modular, and the plastic piece in the middle of the dial has the words "Western Electric" instead of the pre-1969 Bell System logo of the turquoise one. Interestingly, instead of a month/year stamp on the bottom, this phone has the number "80179" stamped below the model number. This date code, which they started using in the later days of the Bell System, identifies the exact day it was built rather than just the month and year.
MODEL: AD-3/?
DATED: 80179 (June 27, 1980)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fifteenth vintage phone, an ivory/gold Western Electric "Celebrity" desk phone which I purchased at a flea market for $20. Probably the most prolific model of the "Design Line" phone series, the Celebrity was produced from 1973 to 1984. I think mine is a later one, because it has a sticker on the bottom which bears the name American Bell, a name which AT&T used for a very short time after the breakup of the Bell System. Apart from some discoloration in the brass plating, this set is in good condition, and works perfectly.
MODEL: CS940D41
DATED: 83179 (June 28, 1983)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my sixteenth vintage phone, a moss green Western Electric 1500 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $5. This is my second touch-tone phone. The 1500 was one of the first touch-tone phones made available to the general public. Unlike the later (and far-more-common) 25xx series, the 15xx series has only ten buttons on it's dial, omitting the 'star' and 'pound' buttons normally found on a touch-tone phone. The 15xx series was only produced for three years (1964-1967), so these phones are fairly rare. Unlike most later WE touch-tone phones, this one is completely hardwired (no modular components to it whatsoever). This phone works, but seems to be overly susceptible to hum if the yellow and black wires are connected.
MODEL: 1500D
DATED: 10-66
RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my seventeenth vintage phone, a yellow Western Electric Princess phone which I bought at a flea market for $1. This was my first Princess phone, a model which the Bell System intended specifically as an extension phone. Before then, the vast majority of households had just one phone, typically a basic black desk or wall phone, located in the center of the house; the Princess phone, however, was intended to be installed in a customer's bedroom. This is a later example of the Princess model meant to be sold in AT&T's "Phone Center Stores" (hence the 'CS' prefix in the model number), made around the time of the Bell System's divesture; consequently, there is no socket for a dial lamp. The top of the handset is faded, but the rest of the case is in pretty good shape, and the set works pretty good for the price paid.
MODEL: CS702BM
DATED: 83034 (February 3, 1983)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my eighteenth vintage phone, a black Automatic Electric model 80 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $4. This is Automatic Electric's equivalent to the Western Electric 500. The plunger buttons are metal, and the cradle is shaped differently (termed the "walking cradle", from the ability for the handset to fall squarely onto the cradle even while walking; I have yet to test this theory). The dial is a bit sluggish, but pulses successfully. The ringer is meant for use on a party line (apparently a 42Hz type), and therefore doesn't work on modern-day 20Hz ringing current. The baseplate has a "Telephone Extension Corp." sticker over the original "Monophone" branding, with info on the model number, ringer equivalence, a date of 4/79 (probably when it was refurbished), and the word "GRANDFATHERED" in the space for the FCC registration number. Likely during the refurbishment, the original line cord was replaced with a modular-type flat cord with lugs attached to three of the four wires (the black wire was clipped); does anyone have a spare original-style line cord? It currently refuses to ring, due to the party line ringer. Hopefully, I can find a proper straight-line (SL) ringer to replace it.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my nineteenth vintage phone, a black Stromberg-Carlson model 1543W desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $12. This is my second S-C phone. Unlike my 1443F, the 1543W looks much more conventional-looking; for the most part, a clone of the Western-Electric 500. However, the handset is of the same style as used on my 1443F, whereas most 1543s were equipped with something resembling Western Electric's G-type handset. The ringer wasn't wired correctly when I got it, but I rewired it using a schematic, and it now works fine.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twentieth vintage phone, a black Western Electric 500 desk phone, which I bought at a flea market for $1. Unlike my other black 500 phone, this one has the later clear plastic fingerwheel dial instead of the black metal one (though it also has hardwired cords). One somewhat-interesting thing about this phone is that all of the major parts (dial, ringer, network, etc.) have matching dates (referred to as a "birthday phone" by collectors). However, when I opened it up, I discovered that not only had the ringer been disconnected, but someone had removed the bells! Once I fixed the wiring, and swapped in a set of bells from one of my parts phones, it started ringing. The housing was dirty, and sported some old stickers when I got it, but it has since cleaned up nicely.
MODEL: 500D
DATED: 1-69
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twenty-first vintage phone, a Western Electric/AT&T "Country Junction" wall phone which I picked up at a flea market for $10. Originally part of the "Design Line" in the '70s, the Country Junction was made to look similar to the single-box wall phones of the early days of telephone. Unlike the countless imitations which have come since, mine uses a true rotary dial, instead of an imitation round touchtone dial (though some later Design Line Country Junction phones apparently did use them). Unlike most phones of the era, it doesn't use a modular jackplate to mount it to the wall, instead using a set of screws. Another odd thing is that it's handset cord is straight and cloth-covered, like the one on my 302 (though it's much thinner than the 302's cords). Apart from having had a loose handset (since glued back together), it's in good shape, and works perfectly.
MODEL: 951A1-03

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my twenty-second vintage phone, a woodgrain ATC "Deco-Tel" model 158001 "Chestphone", which I bought at a flea market for $10. This phone was often sold by the Bell System in the Design Line, but this one was private-labeled for ATC's own sale. It resembles a cigar humidor with the lid closed, but opens to reveal a telephone. It uses a touch-tone dial which looks similar to those used by WE in the 2500 series. The handset cord retracts into the base using an interesting mechanism. The phone works, for the most part, but the ringer is rather weak (a symptom I've never seen before).
RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twenty-third vintage phone, a Western Electric D1 handset mount, which I bought at a flea market for $35. Unlike most of the other phones in my collection, the D1, commonly referred to as a 202 phone, isn't self-contained. Like a candlestick set, the D1's housing contains only the wiring for the handset, a place for a dial and/or an apparatus blank, and the handset hook switch; the coupling of these to the phone line, as well as the ringer, is done in a wall-mounted box called a 'subset'. Technically, a 102 or 202 isn't classified by the shape of the base, but the type of subset box it is connected to; mine has an oval base, which is what the 202 is commonly seen as, but I do not have a subset box to connect it to, so it is technically just a D1. Being a later version, my D1 is equipped with a 302-style F1 handset, rather than the earlier E1 "spit-cup" handset. Also, it is lacking a dial, which means that it was used in a manual phone system (pick up the phone, wait for the operator to answer, and tell her the number you wish to dial). Due to lack of a subset, I have yet to test it.

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twenty-fourth vintage phone, a Radio Shack "French Continental" model 43-320 desk phone, which I bought at a flea market for $25. This phone is similar to the thousands of "French" phones which were cranked out of overseas factories during the '70s and '80s, mostly based on the (ironically, Danish) Telefon Fabrik Automatic D08, as seen below (here is a comparison shot). This one has a large rectangular base, with a silver rotary dial jutting out of it; the dial has the letters in the center of each fingerwheel hole, with the numbers on the inside (a common trait of older European phones). Like many phones of this type, the plastic has yellowed noticeably. The dial is a bit sluggish, but other than that, it seems to work.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my twenty-fifth vintage phone, a black TeleConcepts candlestick phone, which I bought at a flea market for $10. Likely made in the '70s or '80s, it gives the look of a classic candlestick desk set, while containing modern innards (and not needing a subset box for the network and ringer). The phone itself is in near-mint shape, but someone removed the ringer assembly from it some time in the past. I eventually ended up giving this phone to someone who needed it for a project.
DIAL (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twenty-sixth vintage phone, a black Western Electric 5302 desk phone, which I bought at a flea market for $20. The 5302 is a bit of an oddity; on the outside, it resembles a 500 phone, but the guts are actually from a 302 phone. The 5302 was not, as some think, the "missing link" between the two; rather, it was developed by Western Electric as a conversion kit, and sold to both Bell System and independent phone refurbishing companies from the mid '50s well into the 1960s. It was created in order to meet the demand for 500 phones, while at the same time helping to get rid of the surplus 302s which were no longer in demand due to the introduction of the 500 phone (plus, 5302s worked better on some phone lines than the early 500 versions did, but this was later corrected). Mine (which still has the original 302-style 'F' handset instead of a 500-style 'G' handset) actually has the guts of a 304, which was originally intended for a party line setup. It wouldn't ring when I got it, but rewiring it fixed the problem. Other than a small piece missing from the front right corner of the housing, it's in pretty good shape, and works fine.
MODEL: 5302G (has innards of 5304)
DATED: 3/40 (inside of 304 base; date of conversion unknown)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my twenty-seventh vintage phone, a beige Western Electric 554 wall phone which I bought at a flea market for $10. This phone is special: it is remanufactured (by a company called "Metropolitan Tele-Tronics Corp.") in the box. It was originally sold at Building 19, a Massachusetts chain of bargain stores. The shell (which has "BELL SYSTEM Made by Western Electric" stamped on it) is in mint condition, as is the handset (which has AT&T stamped on it). Unlike my other 554s, this one has a plastic handset hook. I have yet to test this phone.
MODEL: Unknown (likely 554DMP)
DATED: Unknown (228 backplate dated 12-77)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twenty-eighth vintage phone, a black HEEMAF model 1955 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $35. This is my first European phone, made for Holland's PTT (Post, Telephone and Telegraph). This phone is nicknamed the "Batmobile phone", due to it's resemblance to the Batmobile seen in the 1980s Batman movies. The design is quite sleek. Like my beige 554 above, this one was also refurbished in the box, with the old-style Archer logo on it, as a "Standard Dial Telephone" (cat. no. 279-385). Apparently, it was sold by Radio Shack, for use either as an extension phone, or as an intercom station (there are wiring diagrams in the box for either purpose). Both the box, as well as a sticker on the bottom of the phone, say "Made In Holland". Apart from a scratch on the dial label, as well as a loose strain relief on the handset cord, this phone is in near-mint condition, and works perfectly.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my twenty-ninth vintage phone, a Western Electric model 750B panel phone which I bought at a swap meet for $5. Apparently, it was pulled from the wall of a hotel lobby. The bezel which goes around the edges is missing, and the original retractable handset cord reel was swapped out for a standard coiled cord many years ago, but it's otherwise complete. It works fine, though I have yet to figure out a way to mount it flush with the wall.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirtieth vintage phone, a black Telegrafverket model 11AB12-3 convertible desk/wall phone which I bought at a flea market for $30. This is my second European phone. It is odd in that it has a pair of hooks on the back of the handset mounting, making it apparently usable as a wall phone as well as a desk phone. I don't know alot about it, other than it likely being from Norway. I eventually ended up giving it to a fellow telephone collector, and it's currently mounted to a wall with the dial in the 'upside-down' position.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-first vintage phone, a white Western Electric 2500 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $1. This is my first 2500 (12-button version of my 1500). Semi-interestingly, all the modular cords which came with it (even the matching 4-prong adapter) are all OEM WE parts.
MODEL: 2500DM
DATED: 78268 (September 25, 1978)
RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-second vintage phone, an ivory Western Electric Princess phone which I bought at a yard sale for $2. Like my first Princess phone, this one is from AT&T's 'CS' series, and does not have a way to light up the dial. Unlike my other touchtone phones, this one uses the later 72-type dial, with shorter button throw. This makes dialing it a bit odd compared to the 35-type dial of my other WE touchtone phones, but roughly equivalent to the feeling of dialing a modern phone. Also, unlike the other TT dials, the buttons on this one are white, compared with the usual gray (or translucent, in the case of non-CS Princess phones with touchtone dials, which are meant to light up).
MODEL: CS2702BMG
DATED: 83290 (October 17, 1983)
RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-third vintage phone, a black Western Electric 5302 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. Unlike my other 5302, this one has conventional 302 guts in it; also unlike my other 5302, however, it's housing has a covered-up hole for a line selector switch (likely originally belonged to a 5410). It was converted by a Springfield, MA-based phone refurbishing company known as Hallmark House (has a snowflake-looking symbol stamped on the bottom), which probably explains it's oddities. As acquired, it didn't ring (like my other 5302) and had a sluggish dial, but it now works perfectly.
MODEL: 5302 (has "5314" stamped on the bottom in yellow, but this isn't a valid WE model #)
DATED: 1965 (stamped on the bottom in yellow; internal date unknown).
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-fourth vintage phone, a beige Western Electric model 660 Card Dialer phone which I bought at a flea market for $1. The Card Dialer was one of the early attempts at speed-dialing; the user inserts a plastic punch card into a slot on the top of the phone, presses the Start button, and the motorized mechanism dials the number as it (noisily) reads the holes in the punch card. Essentially, it has two dials: the punch card reader, and a standard rotary dial below it on the front panel. Card Dialers were made in both rotary and touch-tone versions, but all were eventually phased out in favor of solid-state memory because the mechanical card readers weren't much faster than manual dialing, and an entirely new card had to be punched if someone changed phone numbers. This phone came with a Western Electric type 2012B 16-18V transformer attached to the end of the line cord, in addition to the standard 4-prong plug; the proper transformer is supposed to be a 2075A, which provides more current, but the dialing mechanism seems to work anyway (if someone happens to have an extra WE 2075A transformer, please email me using the address below). As acquired, the handset hook didn't work, the ringer had been removed, and it was missing any punch cards. I've since fixed the hookswitch, installed a proper C4A ringer, and acquired a set of blank punch cards, which let me use it for it's intended purpose.
MODEL: 660A1
DATED: 11-63 (refurbished in '66)
DIAL 1 (coming soon) | DIAL 2 (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-fifth vintage phone, a yellow Western Electric Princess phone which I bought at a swap meet for $15. Unlike my other rotary-dial Princess phone, this one was made in the '60s, and has a socket for a light bulb to illuminate the dial. This one's a bit of a hybrid: the handset cord is hardwired, but the original 5-wire hardwired line cord has been replaced by a 4-wire modular jack which has been stuffed inside the base, with a modular cord routed through the original cord's opening to the internal jack. In the process, the fifth (white) wire (which, along with the black wire, originally supplied power to the dial lamp) was snipped off. Not sure why they decided to do that, instead of cutting notches in the case to mount the modular jacks as usually done, but it appears to have been done by a Bell System technician at some point. Thanks to the odd modular conversion, connecting the modular plug to the same rig I used to illuminate my turquoise Trimline phone (which takes lamp power from the yellow and black wires) originally resulted in no light from the dial, but rewiring the internal modular jack to make up for the missing line cord wire, and cleaning the lamp's contacts have restored the glow nicely. It now fully matches the original Princess phone tagline of "It's little, it's lovely, it lights!"
MODEL: 702B
DATED: 3-69
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-sixth vintage phone, a yellow GTE/Automatic Electric "Starlite" wall phone which I purchased at a surplus sale for $3. The Starlite was Automatic Electric's answer to Western Electric's Princess phone, and some of them even have provisions for a dial light in the square piece surrounding the rotary dial (mine doesn't seem to have that feature). However, whereas the Princess was exclusively designed as a desk phone, AE made versions of the Starlite for both desk and wall mounting. As received, mine was in a GTE "Decorator Telephone" box (likely from the '80s) with instructions, a blank number tag sticker (similar to the custom ones I make for later WE 500/554 phones) stuck to the front of the dial, and an oddball modular jack-plate. As received, the plug on the back of the jack-plate was meant to fit a GTE/AE wall jack (with a longer plug opening) rather than the more standard WE-style wall jack (with a shallow plug), which is what I use with my wall phones. According to the instructions, the phone originally came with both WE and GTE/AE wall mount plugs, but the WE plug was missing from the box when I got it. Fortunately, a kind member of the TCI mailing list provided me with the proper "BELL PLUG" attachment to go in place of the "GTE PLUG" it came with, and it now mounts perfectly on my WE-style wall jack, where it's been found to work perfectly (apart from the dial being a bit sluggish).
MODEL: TEL-900N (originally 192)
DATED: 67-3 (March 1967?)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my thirty-seventh vintage phone, a red ITT 2500 desk phone which was given to me by a friend. This is my first ITT phone; International Telephone & Telegraph was an independent phone company which later became a conglomerate in the areas of electronics, hotels, insurance, and more (they still sell phones as "ITT-Cortelco"). This is my first red phone, standing out compared to many of my other phones, with boring black/beige cases. It's basically a clone of the WE 2500, with the addition of a neon "message waiting light", which only works when connected to a PBX line (though it sometimes blinks when the phone is ringing). This phone apparently spent much of it's life in a hotel or motel, judging by the sticker under the handset mount instructing the user how to dial out from the PBX it was connected to. It was dirty when I got it, but has cleaned up nicely, and works fine (though the ringer isn't as loud as it should be, for some reason).
DATED: 6-80
RING (coming soon)

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This is my thirty-eighth vintage phone, a Western Electric 211 phone, otherwise known as a G1 handset mount, which I bought from a fellow collector for $70. Often referred to as the "Space Saver", the 211 (as well as it's predecessor the 101/201, otherwise known as the C1 handset mount) was the primary wall-mount handset phone offered by the Bell System until the 354 (a wall version of the 302) was introduced in the late 1940s. Even so, the Space Saver was produced for many years afterwards (variants were made which could use later G1/G3 handsets, and even a touch-tone dial!). They were equipped with an L-shaped bracket which could be affixed to the wall or desk in many ways, and the dial mount (if so equipped) could be rotated a full 360║ (some even allowed the dial to be tilted at various angles). The 211 is akin to the 202 in that it doesn't have a network or ringer built-in, requiring the use of a subset; in lieu of one, I am currently using the coil and capacitor from a 302. My 211 consists of a G1 handset mount, a F1 handset, and a 43A dial mount pod (equipped with a 5H dial). I believe that mine was mounted near a cash register in Milwaukee, due to the number card in the center of the dial, as well as the "First Wisconsin Charge Card" authorization center number sticker below the handset hook. It's dial had a frozen part in it when I got it, but once I applied some oil, it began pulsing normally again, and the rest of the phone works perfectly.
DATED: IV 39
DIAL (coming soon)

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This is my thirty-ninth vintage phone, a Western Electric model 1066 16-button adjunct dial, which I bought at a flea market for $10. Not really a phone per se, this adjunct dial (a type 66D3 touch-tone dial, installed in a 50B adjunct dial mount) was meant to be used to convert existing switchboards to be able to access the "AUTOVON" phone system, which was used by the government and military from the mid '60s to the early '90s. AUTOVON allowed for different levels of precedence to be applied to different phone calls, to make sure that important phone calls were able to get through during times of national emergencies, through the addition of four extra buttons to the standard touch-tone dial pad: Priority (takes precedence over Routine (normal) phone calls), Immediate (takes precedence over Routine and Priority calls), Flash (takes precedence over Routine, Priority, and Immediate calls), and Flash Override (explained below). If one of these precedence levels was used on a phone trunk which was completely in use, it would then pre-empt all lower-level calls in order to get through to where it had to go. The Flash Override button wasn't a precedence level per-se, but a capability which allowed the President of the United States and other high-ranking officials to override other phone network traffic in a dire emergency. The AUTOVON system was replaced in the early '90s, but some of the equipment used for it is still around (though it's no longer useful for it's original purpose, of course). I have yet to try and connect this dial to a normal phone to see how it works, but it shouldn't be too difficult if I can manage to find a diagram showing how to connect it to a phone.

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This is my fortieth vintage phone, a beige Western Electric 2500 desk phone, which formerly belonged to a relative. This is my third 2500. Other than the keypad being a bit wonky, this phone works perfectly.
MODEL: 2500DM
DATED: 80277 (October 3rd, 1980)
RING (coming soon)

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This is my forty-first vintage phone, a white GTE/Automatic Electric "Styleline" desk phone, which formerly belonged to a relative. The Styleline was Automatic Electric's answer to Western Electric's Trimline phone. It's equipped with a touchtone dial, but unlike the Trimline, the buttons are opaque rather than translucent, so it likely wasn't meant to be lighted. I haven't done much testing with this phone, but it seems to work.
MODEL: 981
DATED: Unknown
RING: (coming soon)

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This is my forty-second vintage phone, a beige Western Electric Trimline desk phone, which I found at a swap meet for $7.50. Unlike all of my previous Trimline phones, this one sports a 10-button touch-tone dial (and is my second phone with a 10-button TT dial). 10-button Trimline phones are rarer than the other common models, as the Trimline phone was introduced near the end of the 10-button dial period, two years before the star and pound buttons were added to touch-tone dials. This set is dirty, and has some intermittent connections, but works otherwise.
MODEL: AD1/1220A
DATED: 6-68/3-68
RING (coming soon)

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This is my forty-third vintage phone, a beige Western Electric Trimline wall phone which I found at a swap meet for $7.50. Like the previous set, this one sports a 10-button touch-tone dial. I actually found it at the same booth as the previous phone. How these two 10-button Trimlines ended up with the same seller, I have no idea. Like the desk one, it has a paper surround around the buttons, which was changed to stainless-steel with later phones, and the Bell System logo on the in-handset hang-up button. Also like the desk one, this phone is dirty, but otherwise in good shape (though I have yet to test it).
MODEL: AC1/?
DATED: 11-67/?
RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my forty-fourth vintage phone, a black Western Electric 5302 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. Technically, this is actually a 5304 (party line phone), and my second of this style; unlike my other one, however, this one actually acknowledges the fact that it was originally a 5304, and has the words "WIRED AS A 5302G" stamped on the bottom. Like my other two 5300-series phones, this one uses a F-type handset. Oddly, the housing bears a sticker reading "TEL. CODE NO. 9Z8-3286"; I'm not sure what this is supposed to mean, or why they used a 'Z' as part of the number (some dials had a 'Z' alongside the '0' dial position, but neither 500s nor 5302s had this past the prototype stages). The '3286' part of the number corresponds to the EXT. code listed in the dial center, so I'm guessing this phone was part of some sort of PBX system, but I'm not really sure. As received, the dial was sluggish, and the ringer wasn't working, but the phone now works perfectly.
MODEL: 5304G (wired as 5302G)
DATED: 2-49 (inside of 304 baseplate)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my forty-fifth vintage phone, a black Western Electric D-170090 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $10. The D-170090 is kind of an oddball; the basic housing design is that of a standard 302 desk phone, but it uses a different handset, and sports parts which indicate that they've been treated with anti-fungal compounds (probably "MFP", a resin compound used to fungus-proof military electronics back in the '40s and '50s). I believe that this phone was made for the military by Western Electric in the mid '40s. Unfortunately, this set has seen far better days; the thermoplastic housing sports several cracks, and the handset plungers are stuck down, but all the parts seem to be there. I'm not sure if I'll be able to restore this phone, but it looks fairly neat regardless.
MODEL: D-170090
DATED: Unknown
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my forty-sixth vintage phone, a black Western Electric 302 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $15. This is my second 302 phone (third if you count the D-170090). Unlike my other 302, this one has a thermoplastic housing (kinda odd, since the dates listed on the parts inside the base aren't too far off from my other 302). Both the case and handset are very shiny, compared to the dull black of my metal 302 (it's also a good deal lighter, though still very solid). Like my other 302, it sports cloth-covered cords for both the handset and line cords, with the handset cord being straight rather than coiled like later rubber-covered handset cords. As found, the ringer and dial needed work, but I was able to solve these issues.
MODEL: 302
DATED: 5-46
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my forty-seventh vintage phone, a Telefon Fabrik Automatic model D08 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. This phone could probably be called "the phone that launched a thousand clones", as it's distinctive design (rectangular body with the dial jutting out from the front, metal-and-plastic handset with an angled horn over the mouthpiece, ornate brass handset hook assembly) was copied by countless overseas manufacturers, and sold as "European-style phones"; this is the original, or something close to it. The Radio Shack "French Continental" listed above is one of said clones; ironically, the original was used in Denmark, by "Kj°benhavns Telefon-Aktieselskab", otherwise known as KTAS. This model of phone was apparently introduced in 1908, though this is a later version, the case being ivory as opposed to black. The bottom of the case has no markings on it whatsoever; however, the inside of the case sports the date "24 APR 1941" (the last digit could be a 7 or a 9, it's hard to tell). Possibly the most distinct feaure of this phone is the call counter mechanism; an odometer-like display (currently reading 2975) shows through a small window on the top of the case. I have no idea if any of the clones employed such a device, though I highly doubt it. The original linecord has, sadly, been replaced with something newer, fitted with a 4-prong plug (both made by Western Electric, oddly enough). In addition, the signaling button is no longer there (the hole has been plugged), and the dial plate has American letter groups in the middle of the digit holes rather than Danish ones. My guess is that this phone was imported to the US in the '60s or '70s, and modified for our phone system. This phone dials out fine, but I have yet to get it to ring. More info as I discover it.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my forty-eighth vintage phone, a pink Western Electric Trimline desk phone which was given to me by a relative. This is similar to the first Trimline phone that I got, in that it has the old-style pre-modular connectors between the handset and base, and a 4-prong plug. I have yet to get it to ring despite the ringer being wired as per diagrams, but the phone works otherwise.
MODEL: AD1/?
DATED: 3-70/?
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my forty-ninth vintage phone, a brass Western Electric 20AL candlestick phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. This is my first real candlestick phone, my other one being a '70s reproduction. Introduced around 1912, the 20AL is one of the most common candlestick phones out there, since it was made for most of the teens. Like other candlestick phones (and early desk sets like the D1/202 above), it requires an external subset box in order to work. It was made before dial service was introduced, and has no provisions to add a rotary dial. Originally, this phone had a black 'japanned' finish; this phone got stripped of it's paint somewhere along the line, exposing the brass underneath. This phone needs a lot of work; the brass is scratched and tarnished, the mouthpiece is chipped, the handset needs a diaphragm, the base is missing most of it's felt, and the original cords are gone. Hopefully, it won't be too hard to make this phone look nice, and work like it was meant to.
DATED: Latest patent date 24 JAN 15

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This is my fiftieth vintage phone, a beige Western Electric 500 desk phone which formerly belonged to a relative. The most interesting thing about this phone is the presence of an amplified handset, known as the G6. Oddly, the housing for this phone has modular-style rectangular cutouts, but the cables are the older hardwired type, with the (extremely long) line cord sporting a 4-prong plug. I have yet to test this phone, and it is extremely dirty, but in decent shape otherwise.
MODEL: 500D
DATED: 9/55 on the innards, circa 1977 for the G6 modification
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my fifty-first vintage phone, a black Western Electric D1 handset mount, which I bought at a flea market for $40. As stated above, the D1 is otherwise known as a 202 set. Unlike my above D1, this one still sports the original type E1 "spit-cup" handset, and came with a 634A subset box. The D1's line cord is missing, and the handset has some minor cracks in it, but it looks to be in good shape otherwise. The subset has a loose spring inside, but it shouldn't be too hard to repair.

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fifty-second vintage phone, a black Western Electric 5302 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $15. This is my fourth 5302 set; unlike all of the others, this one is equipped with a G-type handset, as seen on the normal 500 set. The "GF" handset, as it's referred to by collectors, is equipped with the HA1 receiver and F1 transmitter elements used by a 302 set, in order to be compatible with the 302 innards inside the 5302. Other than that, the innards appear to be identical to the ones inside my other 5302 sets, apart from the patent dates stamped on the inner portion of the bottom plate, indicating that the innards of the 302 this phone was converted from originated from Northern Electric (Western Electric's Canadian counterpart). The line cord was wired wrong when I got this phone, but that has since been corrected, and the phone works nicely.
MODEL: 5302
DATED: 1960 (stamped on the bottom in yellow; internal date 9-50).
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fifty-third vintage phone, a black Western Electric 500 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $15. From the outside, this looks like a standard black 500 phone, but the insides tell a different story. The 500T is something of an oddity in the 500 phone lineup; it stems from the early days of the 500 set's production lifespan, before they'd perfected it. Early 500 sets were equipped with a 425A network, which lacked a method of compensating for the distance the subscriber lived from the central office, or CO. Subscribers who were close to the CO usually leased a plain 500 (later known as the 500A/B (non-dial/dial)), which used a 311A equalizer unit (which actually had a small vacuum tube inside it) to make up for the strong signal from the central office. Customers who were more distant from the CO, however, would've leased a 500T, which didn't have an equalizer unit. The 500T was soon replaced by the nearly-identical 500J/K (non-dial/dial), and all of these earlier-type sets pretty much disappeared once the 500 set was perfected with the 500C/D (non-dial/dial) version, whose 425B network had built-in equalization. I'm not sure exactly how rare the 500T is, but it's not very common, having been made for a bit more than a year. Another interesting thing about this phone is that all of the parts have dates which very nearly match, including the outer housing, which sadly has a chunk missing from the front right corner. The dial (an early 7A type) is a bit sluggish, but the phone seems to work fine otherwise.
MODEL: 500T
DATED: 6-52
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fifty-fourth vintage phone, a moss green Western Electric Call Director which I bought at a flea market for $5. This is my first multi-line "key set", and what a way to start! A bit of background: a key system is one where extension phones (known as "key sets") are accessed through manual switching via either electromechanical or electronic means, as opposed to a PBX (Private Branch Exchange), where each extension phone can be dialed directly from another. At the heart of most large key systems was a Call Director, a master console which typically sat on the desk of a secretary, who would use it to transfer calls to various extension phones (which usually had six buttons for direct access of commonly-used extensions) within a particular key system. Call Directors were available with 18 or 30 buttons; this particular is the former, though one of the banks of six buttons has been removed in favor of an "apparatus blank", meaning that it can handle a maximum of 11 extensions (with the 12th button being a red "Hold" button, which releases any depressed extension buttons). One interesting thing about this particular Call Director is that it was designed to be used with a "Station Line Concentrator" switching device, which meant that all 18 lines could be controlled using a single 50-pin "Amphenol" connector (25 wire pairs), instead of three as a standard 18-button Call Director would need (one connector for each column of six buttons; 30-button Call Directors sport five of them). This Call Director won't work on a standard key system without the aforementioned line concentrator (type 235 or 236), and is not as common as a standard version. I am unable to test this phone, due to the fact that I don't have a proper key system or line concentrator to use it with, but it seems to be in decent condition (though the bottom has rusted a little, and the identification stamps have been obliterated).
MODEL: Unknown; likely 634D
DATED: Unknown; likely 1-69

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This is my fifty-fifth vintage phone, a turquoise Western Electric 500 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. This is my second phone in this color, the other one being the first rotary phone I ever got! Turquoise phones are occasionally a source of confusion among phone collectors, due to the unfortunate tendency of plastic to 'yellow' over the years due to exposure to UV light; many of the supposed turquoise phones out there were originally 'aqua blue', but have yellowed to a turquoise-like color. This particular 500, however, looks to have always been turquoise, since the inside of the base is roughly the same color as the outside (a yellowed phone would likely show the original color on the inside, due to a lack of UV exposure). One nice thing about this phone is, like some of my other 500s, all of the date stamps on the parts match month-wise (referred to as a "birthday phone" by some collectors). This phone was a bit dirty when I got it, and the 'number ring' around the dial was loose, but I've corrected these issues, and the phone works perfectly.
MODEL: 500D
DATED: 8-69
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my fifty-sixth vintage phone, a black Stromberg-Carlson 1243 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $15. This is my third S-C phone. The 1243 was S-C's answer to the Western Electric 302; like the 1443, the 1243 has certain design elements which set it apart from the phone it resembles, like squared-off corners, and a distinctive handset. Oddly, the baseplate on this 1243 identifies it as a 1250WK, which was actually the wall version of the 1243. The 1250 is similar in shape to the 1243, but the handset cradle and dial were positioned to facilitate wall mounting (the Telegrafverket phone seen above is similar in concept, though different in execution; the 1250 wouldn't work very well as a desk phone!). Traces of paint on the bottom plate would seem to corroborate that it was part of a wall phone which was once painted around. The dial in it is an Automatic Electric type; S-C made their own dials, so I'm guessing that it was installed at the same time as the desk conversion was done. I have yet to test this phone, due to the AE dial being sluggish.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my fifty-seventh vintage phone, a beige Western Electric Trimline desk phone which I bought at a yard sale for 75 cents. This Trimline phone looks to be barely used; the line cord is still wrapped up using brown paper twist-ties, both number card holders have stamped number card filler blanks (reading "Western Electric Trimline") installed, and the 5-wire line cord still has all of its attachments. Even more interestingly, it came with a spare handset (or "hand telephone set"), brand new in the box, along with a bagged H4DB line cord! I have yet to test this phone.
MODEL: AD1/?
DATED: 4-69/?
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my fifty-eighth vintage phone, a white Ericofon which I bought at a flea market for $30. Made by LM Ericsson of Sweden starting in 1954, the Ericofon is a very interesting phone. It is considered to be the first commercially-sold phone which had all of the parts (dial, handset, base) incorporated in one single unit. The dial is on the bottom, with the hookswitch plunger sitting in the middle of it, and the handset extends up from the base in a stylized hook. It was so revolutionary that it inspired Western Electric to develop their own "dial in handset" phone, first resulting in the "Schmoo phone" prototype, and eventually the Trimline phone. The particular model I have is of what's referred to as the 'new case' style, sold by North Electric (which Ericsson partially owned) in the US starting around 1960, with a shorter-looking case and more angled handset portion than the earlier 'old case' version made in Sweden (where it is known as the "cobra phone" due to its snake-esque shape). Ericofons were not particularly common in the Bell System, due to their draconian rules about "outside equipment", though they were eventually allowed in small numbers (mainly to hospitals, where they were very popular). When I got it, the dial was a bit sluggish, but a bit of lubrication fixed that, and it now dials correctly. The "Ericotone" ringer is currently silent when I have the phone hooked to the phone line, though it does work fine when tested using my Radio Shack 43-114 Telephone Tester, so I need to do some further investigation into why it doesn't ring on our phone line.
MODEL: 52L
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my fifty-ninth vintage phone, a moss green Stromberg-Carlson 1654 which I bought at a flea market for $5. This is my fourth S-C phone. The 1654 is an interesting case; it's akin to Western Electric's 1554 and 2554 touch-tone wall phones, but with a rotary dial instead of a touchtone pad. In developing a TT equivalent of the rotary-dial 554, WE's first prototypes were the size of a regular 554, but with a 10-button touchtone pad installed in a round plug which filled the hole where the rotary dial would normally go. For the production model, however, they created a much more compact phone, roughly half the size of its predecessor. For some reason, WE never produced a similar compact version of the 554 (other than the prototype "compact wall" phone, which the 1554/2554 was later modeled after), continuing to produce the large box 554 design for many years afterwards. Other companies, such as Stromberg-Carlson, stepped in to fill the gap, producing phones such as the 1654. Interestingly, some companies produced the reverse, offering 554-style phones with a plug-mounted 12-button touchtone dial in place of the rotary dial (Northern Electric, WE's Canadian counterpart, never even switched to making the compact 2554, preferring to produce the full-sized 3554 (not an Autovon phone) and its full-sized C4A ringer). Anyway, this 1654 had some minor wiring issues when I got it, and the fingerwheel wasn't properly attached, but these were easy fixes, and it works fine (apart from a weak ringer).
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my sixtieth vintage phone, a black Automatic Electric model 50 wall phone which I bought at a flea market for $50. Considered one of the nicest-looking vintage phones, the AE 50 was made from the late '30s to the mid '50s, and is referred to as the "jukebox phone" due to the arched shape of the top of the bakelite case. Similar to my Telegrafverket phone mentioned above, when mounted on the wall, the handset sits on a cradle on the bottom of the front of the case, with the dial above it (the AE 50, of course, can't be converted to act as a desk phone, which is why they also made the model 40). This particular AE 50 has a chrome dial, plain black handset caps (some of them had chrome or brass bands around the caps), and a red-orange stamping on top of the case with patent info. I have yet to test this phone due to the dial being a bit sluggish, and having yet to mount it to the wall (no modular backplate on this wonder, just good ol' bakelite!), but that should be fairly easy to take care of, and the phone is in good shape otherwise.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my sixty-first vintage phone, a red Western Electric Trimline desk phone which I bought at an antiques store for $15. This set is similar to my pink Trimline set listed above, having matching non-modular handset and line cords, as well as a nice matching 4-prong plug. Also like my pink Trimline phone, it yet refuses to ring despite the ringer being wired as per diagrams, but the phone works otherwise.
MODEL: AD1/?
DATED: 1-70/?
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my sixty-second vintage phone, a black Western Electric 500 desk phone which I bought at an antiques store for $15. It was converted to modular at some point, and still sports an AT&T sticker from 1984 on the bottom. The handset cord has had the outer ends of the modular plugs painted black, but it's otherwise in decent shape, and works fine.
MODEL: 500D2M
DATED: 11/65
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my sixty-third vintage phone, a green Northern Telecom model RD-1967 test-set telephone, which I bought at a flea market for $10. Originally known as Northern Electric, and later Nortel, Northern Telecom was the manufacturing arm of Bell Canada, much as Western Electric was to the Bell System (the two were connected until AT&T was forced to sell its stake in Northern Electric to Bell Canada in the late '40s). It's made up of the handset used for one of their "Contempra" phones, essentially their equivalent of the Trimline phone. Like the Western Electric 1013 mentioned above, the RD-1967 has a belt clip, a monitor/line switch, and a set of test leads where the handset cord would normally be. It's in much better shape cosmetically than my WE 1013, with no noticeable cracks in the housing, and seems to work fine.
DIAL (coming soon)

(CLICK HERE FOR A PHOTO)
This is my sixty-fourth vintage phone, a black Western Electric payphone which I bought at a flea market for $150. A replica of a payphone like this was what got me interested in rotary-dial phones in the first place, so I'm very happy to finally have an example of the real thing. Once an extremely common sight all over the world, payphones have become an anachronism nowadays thanks to the proliferation of cell phones, and are increasingly hard to find (especially in working order). This particular payphone is even more uncommon than most; it is of the long-obsolete "three slot" variety, with the coins hitting either a bell or a gong within the phone in order to audibly alert the operator as to which coin was inserted. Western Electric's three slot payphones were typically used with the then-common "pre-pay" system (you picked up the handset, inserted a coin, got dial-tone, and then dialed your number), which was eventually replaced with what's known as "dial-tone first" (similar to pre-pay, but allowing toll-free numbers like 911 to be dialed without having to insert a coin) which came about with the advent of phones using a single coin slot and electronic coin signaling as opposed to auditory signaling with the bell and gong. This particular payphone has been hacked together from two different models and types of Western Electric payphone, the upper housing being from a standard 233G pre-pay type, and the base being from a rare 212G "post-pay" type (not used by much of the Bell System; pick up the handset, dial the call, then insert a coin to un-mute the handset microphone if the dialed party answers), so it probably couldn't be made to work as original unless I were to find a 233G base, or a 212G upper housing. Another hacked aspect is that someone removed the coinbox, and installed a small ringer in its place, though the chute mechanism appears to still be intact for the most part (the coin sensing mechanism is missing, however). As acquired, the kludged-in ringer caused issues with my phone system, and the dial was sluggish; it now dials and rings about as normally as it ever will.
MODEL: 212G/233G
DATED: 12-59 (inside of 233G upper housing)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my sixty-fifth vintage phone, a black Radio Shack "Bonnie 'n Clyde" model 43-321A candlestick phone, which I bought at a flea market for $20. Very similar to the Teleconcepts candlestick phone mentioned above (and perhaps made for RS by them), Radio Shack sporadically offered this phone during the early-mid 1980s. It was originally available with a faux-brass base (for a whole $79.95!), then later with a plain black base (for a somewhat-more-reasonable $59.95), as with the one I have, with both models having faux-brass dial fingerwheels and trim pieces. Other than some wear on the faux-brass trim, as well as some scuffs on the base, this phone is in near-mint condition, and works (and it even has a ringer).
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

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This is my sixty-sixth vintage phone, a black HEEMAF model 1955 desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $7. This is my second phone of this model. It is nearly identical to my other 'Batmobile phone', though its original line cord has been replaced with a modern white modular cord. I have yet to test it.

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This is my sixty-seventh vintage phone, an ivory Northern Electric 554 wall phone which I bought at a flea market for $10. This is my first 554 in some time, and my first true Northern Electric (as opposed to Northern Telecom) phone. For some reason, Northern Electric phones don't seem to be particularly common around here. Like my very first WE 554, it doesn't have a modular backplate. I have yet to test this phone.
MODEL: NE-554B
DATED: =69 (11/69? II-69?)
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my sixty-eighth vintage phone, a lime green Western Electric model 526 outdoor phone, which was given to me by a friend. The 526 is rather of an oddball; it's mounted in a heavy 'weatherproof' metal housing with a hinged front cover (equipped with a magnetic non-locking latch) which opens to reveal a payphone-style gray handset with a short armored cord. The particular example I have is dial-less; the upper right corner of the inner faceplate sports a black pushbutton, which I assume was used for signaling purposes (presumably to a switchboard operator and/or receptionist inside the building). I have yet to test this phone, or figure out exactly what it'd been used for (perhaps to gain entrance to a secure building).
MODEL: 526A ("SET TEL 526 A PER GSE 69297")
DATED: 4-72 (inner housing)/3-72 (faceplate 253A2)
RING (coming soon)

PICTURE COMING SOON (I HOPE)
This is my sixty-ninth and latest vintage phone, a black Stromberg-Carlson model 1443 (I think) desk phone which I bought at a flea market for $20. This is my fifth S-C phone. It is similar to my other 1443, but the dial has a black metal fingerwheel rather than a plastic one. The handset has what looks like yellow paint on part of it, but I'm hoping there's a way to remove it without ruining the finish. I have yet to test this phone, but it's in fairly good cosmetic shape (apart from the paint), and the dial isn't too sluggish.
DIAL (coming soon) | RING (coming soon)





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