Three slot payphones have been around and in service
since the very early 1900′s.
They could be found on nearly every street corner, business, warehouse, manufacturing plant, hotel and stadium, airports, jails …all across North America. Over time they really were everywhere and in constant use. It was a normal part and look of the landscape.
Three slot payphones were taken out of service in the late 1970′s and replaced with ugly box-like single slot units. They were less prone to vandalism and technology was greatly improved.
The three slot payphone look and functionality was virtually unchanged for 65 years. One of the longest runs of use and manufacturing in US history.
With today’s designs of everyday use items being very square and boxy, not to mention disposable or non repairable, three slot payphones are appealing to the eye and very Americana. Millions were destroyed by the phone company when replaced by the single slots. They were tossed into Lake Michigan from the side of barges, buried in landfills, loaded onto rail cars bound for Mexico to be melted into car parts and other uses. Many survived that fate and some have ended up here with me.
They used to be the “norm” for communicating when away from home prior to the common use of the cell phones. Phone companies were and have done away completely with pay phones due to the high repair and maintenance costs from vandals. Those that are around are usually in big cities and privately owned, not in the best of conditions. In Canada however, they are still owned and operated by Bell Canada and kept up very well .
People lied, cried, argued, were in love, called for help and conducted business; legal and not so legal at times! It was an easy way for the Fed’s to tap phones and listen to illegal conversations involving organized crime and criminal activity. Times were simpler and not as much bureaucracy was needed to ask for permission. Much history indeed!
After years of faithful service and unthinkable abuse, I am bringing them back to their original beauty, look and function……and then some!
All of the payphones are authentic, and completely refurbished top to bottom, inside and out, for another century of service. Take a look at what is available, what is possible and the care that goes into
refurbishing a piece of North American history.