American Landline Keys

Below is the continuation of the American landline keys page with keys dating from around 1880 to the early 20th century.

Pictures are arranged approximately by age, with the older keys first.

(Click on each thumbnail to view the full size image):

Lewis Key on Hard Rubber Base. Western Electric, Chicago. Ca. 1880 Another View of the Rubber Based Lewis Key

Straight Lever Key by Lannert & Decker, Cleveland. Ca. 1880

Step Lever Key by Post & Co, Cincinnati Ca. 1880
Straight Key by LG Tillotson, NY on a Shield-Shaped Base. Ca. 1880 Another View of the Tillotson Straight Key Bridge Frame Camelback Key by LG Tillotson, NY on a Hard Rubber Base Rear View of the Bridge Frame Tillotson Key
Another Bridge Frame Key on Hard Rubber Base. This One Was Made by Partrick & Carter, Philadelphia. Ca. Early 1880's Another View of the Partrick & Carter Bridge Frame Key Bridge Frame Camelback Key on Hard Rubber Base by Post & Co, Cleveland. Ca. Early 1880's A Lewis Style Key on Hard Rubber Base Marked "Chicago Telegraph Supply". Likely Made by Western Electric. Ca. Early 1880's
Walter Phillips Patent Key by LG Tillotson, NY. Ca. 1880 Another View of the Phillips Key Delany Patent Key Made by Partrick & Carter, Philadelphia. Has a Unique Rotatable Contact Disk. Ca. 1880 Another View of the Delany Key
The JH Bunnell 1881 Patent Steel Lever Key, 1st Model A Later Example of a JH Bunnell Legless Steel Lever Key. One of the Most Common Telegraph Keys The Washington Key by Thomas Hall, Boston. Ca. 1881 Another View of the Hall Washington Key
Altoona Shops Cain Key, Altoona PA. Ca. 1881 Another View of the Altoona Shops Cain Key Camelback Key by George D'Infreville, NY. Ca. 1881 Another View of the D'Infreville Key
The Prosch Key, Invented by Cyrus Prosch. Ca. 1882 Another View of the Prosch Key Top View of the Prosch Key Close-Up of the Spiral Contact. The Knob Can be Rotated to Provide a Clean Contact When Needed
The Edwards Key, Ca. 1882. Note the Unusual Leaf Spring Pivot Another View of the Edwards Key The Cumming Periphery Contact Key Made by LG Tillotson, NY, Ca. 1882 Another View of the Cumming Periphery Contact Key
The Contacts are Brass Disks With a Platinum Wire Around the Periphery. Disks Are Positioned at Right Angles to Each Other Disk Assemblies Can be Loosened and Rotated to Provide a Clean Contact When Needed Close-up of the Circuit Closer Showing the Key Name The Stevens Key Made by LG Tillotson, NY Ca. 1883. Contacts at the Rear of the Key
Another View of the Stevens Key Close-up of the Circuit Closer With the Stevens Name Victor Leg Key, 1st Model, by LG Tillotson, NY Ca. 1882. Uses a Knife-Edge Pivot Victor Legless Key, 1st Model Ca. 1882. Mounted on Hard Rubber Base
Victor Leg Key, 2nd Model Ca. 1884 Victor Legless Key, 2nd Model Steel Lever Lewis Key by Western Electric, Chicago. Ca. 1884 Another View of the Steel Lever Lewis Key
Lewis Steel Lever Leg Key Ca. 1884 Another View of the Steel Lever Lewis Leg Key The 3 Major Lewis Keys Caton Pattern Camelback Key by ES Greeley, NY Ca. 1885
The Greeley Ludwig Instrument Ca. 1886 The Jenkins Key Made by JH Bunnell, NY Ca. 1886. Invented by MR Jenkins, Browning Missouri Steiner Leg Key by Western Electric, Chicago Ca. 1886. Uses a Leaf-Spring Pivot Another View of the Steiner Leg Key
Steiner Legless Key Ca. 1886 Another View of the Steiner Legless Key The Steel Lever Acme Key by Partrick & Carter, Philadelphia Ca. 1886 Another View of the Acme Key
Leaf-Spring Pivot Key by American Electrical Works, Cleveland Ca. 1886. Similar in Design to the Steiner Key Another View of the American Electrical Works Key Biggs Leg Key, Made in Louisville, Kentucky Ca. 1886 Another View of the Biggs Leg Key
Biggs Legless Key Ca. 1886 Another View of the Biggs Legless Key Camelback Key by Charles Bly, Boston Ca. Late 1880's Another View of the Bly Camelback Key
Straight Lever Key by MA Buell, Cleveland Ca. 1880's. Possibly From a KOB Set Steel Lever Key by CH Dubois, NY Ca. 1886 The Conklin Key by Lewis & Fowler Mfg. Co, Brooklyn NY. Ca. 1887 Top View of the Conklin Key Showing the Unusual Pivot
Camelback Key by JH Bunnell, NY. From a KOB Set. Ca. Late 1880's Straight Lever Key by AB Lyman, Cleveland. From a KOB Set. Ca. Late 1880's Small Camelback Key by JH Longstreet, NY Ca. Late 1880's Another View of the Longstreet Camelback Key
Solid Base Rear-Pivot Key by Western Electric, Chicago. Legless Version. Ca. Late 1880's Another View of the Western Electric Key Solid Base Rear-Pivot Leg Key by Western Electric, Chicago Ca. Late 1880's Another View of the Western Electric Leg Key
Close-up of the Ornate Western Electric Logo Camelback Key by ES Greeley, NY. Ca. Late 1880's Miniature Leg Key by Western Electric, Chicago. Ca. Late 1880's Another View of the Miniature Western Electric Leg Key
Leaf-Spring Pivot Key by AB Lyman, Cleveland. Ca. 1888 Another View of the Lyman Leaf-Spring Pivot Key Steel Lever Legless Key by New Haven Clock Co. Ca. 1888 Steel Lever Legless Key by National Electric Co NY Ca. 1890. New Haven Clock Co Was Bought by National Electric in 1890
"The Unique Key" by National Electric Co. Ca. 1890 Another View of the National Electric "Unique Key" Steel Lever Leg Key by Altoona RR Shops, Altoona PA. Ca. 1890 Close-up of the Altoona Shops Name
Tube Lever Leg Key by Western Electric, Chicago. Ca. 1893 Tube Lever Legless Key by Western Electric, Chicago. Ca. 1893 Straight Lever Key by Sherman & Lyman, Cleveland. Ca. Early 1890's Another View of the Sherman & Lyman Key
Straight Lever Leg Key by Partrick & Carter, Philadelphia Ca. Early 1890's. Someone Had the Key Chrome Plated Victor Style Key by Western Electric, Chicago. Ca. Late 1890's Another View of the Western Electric Victor Key Another Victor Style Key by Foote-Pierson, NY. Ca. 1900
The Lefley Key. Made in Columbia Pennsylvania. Ca. 1902 Another View of the Lefley Key The Fry Open-Circuit Leg Key by JH Bunnell, NY. Ca. 1902 Another View of the Bunnell Fry Key
Miniature Key Made by JH Bunnell, NY for the 95th Reunion of the Old Time Telegrapher Assn. 1095 The Bunnell Miniature Key Has a Loop to be Used as a Watch FOB The Underside of the Miniature Key Showing the Information About the Reunion Another Bunnell Miniature Key Together With the Matching Miniature Sounder
"The Twentieth Century Key" by Foote-Pierson, NY. Ca. 1905. A Pump-Handle Key Operated Sideways to Prevent Telegrapher's Glass Arm Another View of the Twentieth Century Key The Bunnell Sideswiper Key by JH Bunnell, NY. Ca. 1906. Mounted on an Iron Base With Japanned Finish Another View of the Bunnell Sideswiper
JH Bunnell Leg Key With Mecograph Style Tiger Stripe Finish. Ca. 1910 Another View of the Tiger Stripe Bunnell Leg Key Top View of the Bunnell Key Showing the Tiger Stripes Steel Lever Key by Postal Telegraph / Foote-Pierson. With the Western Union Maroon Color. Ca. 1910
Another View of the Postal Telegraph Key Top View of the Key Showing the Postal Telegraph Name, Which is Cast Into the Base Leg Key by MESCO (Manhattan Electrical Supply Co), NY. Ca. 1910 MESCO Legless Key Ca. 1910
The Propst-Jackson Telegraph Transmitter, Charlotte NY. Ca. 1910 Another View of the Propst-Jackson Telegraph Transmitter Close-up of the Propst-Jackson Nameplate The Banholzer Key. A Mechanical Key Attached to a Candlestick Phone to Make Clicking Sounds That Can be Heard Over the Telephone Audio. Ca. 1916
   
  Another View of the Banholzer Key The Banholzer Key Installed on a Candlestick Phone  

 

 

 

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