A Walk Down Memory Lane With the Rotary Phone [Video]
The Rotary phone. A dinosaur from the not-so-distant past that many of us grew up using. You might be surprised to learn that the rotary telephone was patented as early as 1891 by Almon Brown Strowger, although it used lugs on a finger plate instead of holes for dialing the numbers. The later version of the rotary phone that most of us are familiar with, was first introduced in 1904. After that, we ended up with the push button numbers which was first introduced at the 1962 World's Fair. It must have taken a while for people to embrace the push button phone, either that, or my parents were just way behind the times because I grew up with the style of rotary phone pictured above. It had a cord on it that would stretch 20 feet to my sister's bedroom from the kitchen. Needless to say, we didn't see the receiver end of the phone very often since she always had it.
I can't say I miss the rotary phone dialing. It seemed like I had to often re-dial phone numbers because my dialing finger would accidentally slip and not complete the circle. What a pain in the neck! Give me my digital cordless phone any time.
Here's something below you'll get a big kick out of. It's an old "how-to" film that was played in movie theaters when the dial up phone replaced operator service.