Selected photographs from earlier times in communications

---------------------------Early Modes------------------------

Though used by the Indians smoke signals really date back to the ancient Greeks

Carrier Pigeon use dates from the 6th century BC

Semaphore - A Women's Royal Navy Service signaler with signal flags - 1940 
Signal flag meanings were standardized by the British Board of Trade in 1857


The 1st telegraph didn't use sound - The 1st telegraph receiver was visual - Vail Register

Interior of the sparkling-new Western Union Ops Room NYC 1875

Telegraph office around 1903

Boys employed as telegraph messengers, Indiana, 1908

Postal Telegraph-Cable Co.'s Radio City office in New York - 1942.

Telegraph switchboard in the PA RR telegraph room at the Chicago, IL Union Station - 1943

Telegraph Operator Ella Campbell at her post - Sligo Junction, PA -1945

WACs assigned to the 8th Air Force in England operate Model 19 teletype machines - WW2
Teletype was invented in the 1800s but was not practical until the refinements of the 1920s.

communication modes at the Western MD RR Hagerstown yard office - Year ?


Teenage boys made poor telephone operators (rude & bad language) - 1877 (Reenactment?)

First female telephone operators Emma and Stella Nnutt Boston - 1878 (Reenactment?)

Telephone wires over New York -1887

A few telephone operators - Salt Lake City - 1914

Telephone switchboard -1919

Central offices with banks of Strowger switches made dial telephoning possible and all but eliminated
the occupation of telephone operator. Invented by Almon Strowger, a LaPorte, IN undertaker in 1891.

Actress Joan Blondell telephones - Note: Some have dials some don't

Actress Ida Lupino, a Lt. in the Women's Ambulance & Defense Corps at the telephone switchboard
in her  Brentwood, CA home in 1942. She can contact every ambulance in the LA area from here.

Western Electric Assembly Line at Hawthorne Works Chicago - 1945

Telephone Central -1952 

Actress Linda Christian using a WE Model 300 telephone - Early-1950s

Chicago CTA Switchboard Operator - Merchandise-Mart -1957

Long distance operators in Omaha, NE - 1959

1892 switchboard in a living room - Note relay rack on right - 1960s


Predecessor of Zenith - The Chicago Radio Laboratory - about 1920

Silent screen star Mary Philbin listens to her radio - 1920s

Howard and Marion Armstrong on their Palm Beach honeymoon. Here Howard
tunes the world's first "portable" radio, a wedding gift to his bride. 

British Farmer and Son listen to radio - 1920s

President Herbert Hoover listening to his radio - 1920s

WUG2 Radio Room - Memphis District, US Army Corps. of Engineers - Late 1920s

New Orleans radio servicing class - 1937

AT&T NYC Overseas Radio/Cable Switchboard - Dec. 1943

A Radio is Company for this Girl in her Boardinghouse Room - 1943

Missouri SP, Troop F, Jefferson City, Radio Room - Operator Harry Duncan - circa 1940s
Appears to be Collins gear - AM at 1600-1700 KHz?

Pat Woodruff does homework with the radio going full blast - Missouri - 1944

Actress Veronica Lake in the movie The Hour Before the Dawn - 1944

Hickok Repair Bench - circa 1947

Two GE employees view new low-band mobile radio installation - 1947-8

Ted Gempp, Operator of the Radio Station at Alpine, NJ - 1948

C Nelson and J W Bryant in GE Airstream test trailer - 1947-8

A Hallicrafters S-38, 
my first SW RX, sitting on my desk in 1948

Police radio from the movie Armored Car Robbery - 1950

Radio Row NYC about 1950 - Displaced by World Trade Center in mid-1960s

Control & Radio room at marine radio station WMI, Lorain, OH - 1954

W7DET - Seattle. A commercial looking but home-brew AM, CW and RTTY station - 1957.

W7DET Seattle, 1957. An exemplary home-brew AM, CW and RTTY station.

The teletype machine is a Teletype Model 26 . The unit in the upper left hand corner is a military LM- series
frequency meter, probably LM-4 or LM-7.

The receiver on the top shelf is a National NC-57 with the added S-Meter in the speaker grille. The NC-57
is for Conelrad and general coverage purposes.

On the upper left side is either his RTTY T/U or maybe the CRT is part of a repackaged Hallicrafters panadapter.

Panel above the Collins 75A-2 receiver looks like a rotator (prop pitch motor?) controller and its selsyn indicator.
Telephone dial above the Collins 75A-2 receiver is possibly a phone patch. Clock on top row is 24 hour.

The home-brew transmitter is built around a Collins PTO assembly. On the extreme right is a fully home-brew
linear amplifier, with an auxiliary meter panel on the top shelf.

The desk top was replaced with his homemade console holding all the units.

The picture was taken for a pictorial article about the station in the July 1957 QST. This fellow was a fine metal
and wood craftsman as well as an accomplished equipment designer. Note the precise symmetry of his panel
layouts and how the cabinets are built to fit the exact desktop width.

W7DET was quite a craftsman.


Obsolete televisions - photo by Louis Van Paridon - 1967