NMSAT :: Networked Music & SoundArt Timeline

1878 __ The first local telephone exchanges
Comment : The first local telephone exchanges (rather than private lines between two or more parties) began operation in earnest in 1878; the first in New Haven, Connecticut on January 28th. Many cities followed soon after. On December 1st the first five telephones linked by a central switch were connected in Washington, D. C. The first multiple switchboard began operation in Chicago in 1879. Cables were strung in the handrail of the walkway on the Brooklyn Bridge, which was under construction at that time, linking New York City to Brooklyn. 1879 also saw the rapid growth of local telephone exchanges operated by local telephone companies under license from Bell throughout the United States. Early exchanges identified customers by name rather than by a telephone number. A measles outbreak in Lowell, Massachusetts, lead to the use of telephone numbers so that temporary operators could quickly identify customers' lines instead of having to match callers' names with line numbers. (Jeff Nucciarone)Mark Twain was one of the first three people in Hartford to own a telephone (He said that the telephone had replaced “the petrified messenger boy). The telephone was first used commercially in nearby New Haven. The first phone books appeared and were printed in sheets at first since there weren't very many subscribers at the time. As more people subscribed to telephone service it became necessary to print directory listings in books. The first telephone switchboard Operators were teenage boys. Young women, who were believed to be more well-mannered than boys, were preferred to fill those positions. Emma M. Nutt was the first female employee for the Bell Telephone Company. She was hired at the Boston exchange September 1, 1878, and continued until her retirement in 1915. Her 37 years as an operator began a tradition of long service. The earliest telephones were all connected to each other. Everyone who shard the same line could listen or talk to each other. Privacy became an issue since it was so easy to listen in on another conversation. Also, any two people speaking tied up that line for as long as they were talking, thus, denying service to other subscribers on that line. Identifying the intended recipient of a phone call was done by 'ring-pattern'. The Switchboard allowed people to have private conversations. The first commercial telephone switchboard opened in 1878 in New Haven, Connecticut with eight lines and twenty-one subscribers. The rural (country) switchboard was almost always installed in the home of the local operator. (Compiled from various sources)
French comment : La première conversation téléphonique a lieu le 10 mars 1876 à Boston : Bell contacte son assistant Thomas Watson installé dans une pièce voisine. A partir de ce moment-là, les essais ont été multiplié et la première ligne téléphonique a été testée le 9 octobre 1876 par Graham Bell lui-même sur une distance de deux miles. Déjà en avril 1877 est entrée en service la première ligne téléphonique et le premier central installé par la Bell Company desservant 21 abonnés (au moment de leur répondre, les opérateurs lancent un "oh, oh!" en guise de bonjour) avec ses huit lignes a été inauguré le 28 janvier 1878 à New-Haven, dans le Connecticut. George W. Coy est embauché comme le premier opérateur de téléphone à plein temps aux États-Unis. -- La première centrale téléphonique était manuelle et était installée à New Haven en 1878, mais il y avait seulement 21 abonnés, dont le célèbre écrivain Mark Twain. En 1891, la centrale devenait automatique sous l'influence des pompes funèbres Almon B. Strowger, qui perdait trop de clients parce que la femme de son concurrent était téléphoniste au central manuel local. L'installation du réseau téléphonique est inspiré du télégraphe: on reliait les téléphones deux à deux. Puis, chaque fois qu'un abonné voulait faire un appel, un opérateur devait brancher, c'est-à-dire relier les lignes de téléphone et la communication était établie. (Compiled from various sources)
Urls : http://css.psu.edu/news/nlfa98/slice.html (last visited ) http://recherche-technologie.wallonie.be/fr/particulier/menu/revue-athena/par-numero/classement-par-annee/2007/n-228-fevrier-2007/technologie/aux-sources-du-telephone.html (last visited ) http://wholesale.att.com/info_and_events/phonehistory.html (last visited ) http://cnum.cnam.fr/CGI/fpage.cgi?P84.2/43/100/542/0/0 (last visited )

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