"Old" telephone numbers...
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Posted by Dan Mowry (+1439) 14 years ago
Could anyone point me in the right direction or explain to me some of the old, telephone number conventions?

For example, calling "Cloverdale 565" or "BR 549" (bonus points to anyone who gets the joke behind that last example).

In particular, what I'm looking for is the relation (or translation) to the conventions used in Miles City those many years ago... what they meant, actual names (such as the "Cloverdale" example), etc.

I'm 38 so I'm only old enough to remember Grandma's rotary Ma-Bell phone and how much it was a pain to accidentally dial zero when I meant to dial nine (then have to start all over again).
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Posted by Kacey (+3161) 14 years ago
I remember my grandparent's phone number was CE2-1626. That was later changed to 232.
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Posted by Dona Stebbins (+821) 14 years ago
The CE was short for CEdar, as i recall.
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+10255) 14 years ago
As I understand it, the word-number combination went back to the days when all calls were placed through an operator. It was supposedly simpler to tell the operator you want CEdar 2 - #### than it was to say 232 - ####. Perhaps the CEdar 2 type prefixes also served as a mnemonic tool.

Today, I hate it when businesses and organizations go with "cute" phone numbers like 1-800-Call now.
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Posted by David Schott (+18207) 14 years ago
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Posted by John Morford (+344) 14 years ago
BR 549...........

That's the number of one of the most honest car dealers there ever was! Junior Samples of Hee Haw.
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Posted by Jack McRae (+362) 14 years ago
I remember my grandfather's phone number in Miles City almost forty years since his death. I think it is because we had to tell it to the operator every time we phoned. I don't know my children's phone numbers because they are stored in my phone and I use speed dial.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3714) 14 years ago
Heh, the first phone number I ever knew was my Grandparent's and I still remember it and even use it for some passwords and such since it's not in service anymore or not theirs anymore at least.

I don't know the number of almost anyone in my family now though thanks to using my cell phone all the time.
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Posted by Amorette Allison (+12372) 14 years ago
Dial phones came in to use in Miles City in 1957. I hope to have an ad explaining how to use dial phones from the '57 Star in book five.

Yeah, Cedar i.e. CE i.e 23 was a way to remember a number. Easier than just numerals. I-800-CAR-TALK I can remember. I-800-227-8255 is harder. I have to LOOK at the phone to get the numbers, though, which is kind of a pain.
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Posted by Salli (Scanlan) Starkey (+236) 14 years ago
I remember ...
Our number was 1751 before dial came in. I was told that Miles City was the test area for the first dial phones. Dad used to play music on it till the operator called and asked him not to play on it.

I was also told that TV would never last (dad said) because more people liked to read the news and it was competition for the paper.

Does anyone remember the OLD two story house next to the old Star building? Mom said dad had it tore down to put in the parking lot, and he wouldn't let her go in to get the antiques out. She said it all went with the house. EEEK!
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Posted by BLT (+81) 14 years ago
I have a phone book from 1954. It is interesting to look through. Some of the business's that are no longer here. Some that still are. Miles City has changed some over the years.

On another subject, does anyone know much history regarding the "Tongue River Clinic"?
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Posted by Ron (+36) 14 years ago
My grandmother's phone number was 2 longs and a short, I still have the old crank phone.
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Posted by Sharlene (+1200) 14 years ago
This is really interesting information as my grandmother, Evelyn Wells, was an operator for MaBell here in Miles City. I remember going to the Bell office over by the Eagles Club where the Miles City vision clinic used to be and visiting all the ladies that were working with her. It was neat to see them with their headsets on and plugging the wires into the holes to connect the calls. They would also listen in on calls and knew what was going on in town before anyone else knew. I can't remember any numbers as I was a little girl when we were here but I sure do remember the Bell office. If anyone has a picture of the operators, I would love to have a copy.
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