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Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

First Telephone in the White House

This Day in History: May 10, 1877 

President Rutherford B. Hayes
AP Photo

On this day in 1877, President Rutherford B. Hayes had the first telephone installed in the telegraph room of the White House. Hayes was an early adopter of the new invention. Barely 14 months had passed since Alexander Graham Bell famously transmitted the words, “Mr. Watson, come here! I want to see you!” — proving his device worked.

First Telephone (National Museum of American History)

While Hayes embraced the new technology, few people called him. One reason: The phone, whose number was “1,” could be reached only from the Treasury Department, then as now, across East Executive Avenue from the White House.
Presidential Telephones of the United State
President Herbert Hoover at his desk
in the Oval Office of the White House in 1930
More than 50 years passed before President Herbert Hoover had the first telephone line installed at his desk in the Oval Office, a Western Electric 102.

WOW! How phones have changed!

The "50 Millionth Telephone in Service in the Nation" 
Western Electric 500 with a gold finger wheel and finger stop with gold lettering on the dial.
The gold trim along the bottom of the set is made up of 48 stars, one for each state at the time.

Click here for more information on this phone (PDF). (Source: Pacific Telephone Magazine, December 1953. Scan thanks to paul-f.com)