I doubt that too many remember using these kind of phones. They were wall-mounted and had 2 large dry-cell batteries inside. The hand crank alerted the local switchboard operator that you wanted to make a call. She sat in front of a switchboard with cables everywhere and plugged them into the correct sockets so that you could talk to another party. I'd say my Blackberry is one giant leap for man (or is it mankind?).
Our operator was Floy. She was the only one so worked 6 days a week. Calls were not allowed after 8 PM or on Sunday as she needed a little time off to eat and sleep and such. I even remember our phone number which was 45R4 and it would ring 4 times so that we knew it was for us and not someone else on the party line. In retrospect, I'd guess the number probably stood for line 45, ring 4 times.
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