Author Topic: Strowger Dial Equipment in Bell's Los Angeles Area - was Where's the finger stop  (Read 4707 times)

Offline G-Man

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Re: Where's the finger stop?
« Reply #30 on: February 12, 2016, 06:15:16 AM »
 Here are some random excerpts from the Railroad Commission proceedings that are relevent to some of my previous comments:
 
BY THE COMMISSION FIRST SUPPLEMENTAL ORDER The Railroad Commission hereby declares that in compliance with conditions 1 2 and 3 of the order of November 4, 1916 in the above entitled proceeding stipulations in form satisfactory to the Railroad Commission have been filed herein by Southern California Telephone Company The Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company and United States Long Distance Telephone and Telegraph Company as follows 1 A stipulation by Southern California Telephone Company stipulating and agreeing for itself its successors and assigns as follows a That during the period of five years subsequent to November 4, 1916 Southern California Telephone Company will not make application to the Railroad Commission or any other public authority for any increase in the telephone rates now in effect in the territory in which the company is to operate except in such minor matters as may be necessary to remove discriminations b That except in exceptional cases to be passed upon until further notice in each instance by the Railroad Commission Southern California Telephone Company will install for each subscriber present and future the type of telephone station whether automatic or manual desired by the subscriber and in its solicitation for business and in all other respects will act with absolute impartiality as between the automatic and the manual telephone stations.



CPUC- Commission Proceedings                                                    February 25, 1947
 
Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company authorized to merge with its wholly-owned subsidiary Southern California Telephone Company, the former to be the surviving company.
Decisions of the Public Utilities Commission of the State of California


 California Public Utilities Commission - 1948 -

 After 1915 competitive conditions in Los Angeles and surrounding cities were resolved by purchase and sale agreements. The Pacific Company on April 15, 1916 formed the Southern California Telephone Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary, hereinafter referred to as The Southern California Telephone Company.


1922-
 
We have also insisted that the claimed superior engineering and managerial organization of the American Telephone and Telegraph Company in New York to whom the Los Angeles Company pays a certain amount for services of this nature and for which purpose an allowance was made in our prior decision in this proceeding be made available to the fullest extent for the special problems confronting the company in Los Angeles The American Company with whom rests the ultimate control and ownership of the Los Angeles and the Pacific companies advertises itself throughout the land as a utility at all times ahead of the country s telephone requirements and as a model of corporate organization and efficiency In Los Angeles although forewarned the controlling company in the past has failed to make a reasonable estimate of the city's growth and its telephone requirements but it now seems to be aware of the extent of the work confronting it Adequate funds material and men have been provided and there is evidence that in a reasonable time good service will has re-established It must be remembered that we have no jurisdiction over the American Company in New York All this Commission is able to do is to regulate the amount that is to be allowed in operating expenses as payment to the parent company for service rendered and this amount should be in direct proportion to the value of the service received As a result of our insistence several special construction and service engineers from the American Company including the assistant chief engineer are in or on their way to Los Angeles and will remain there giving their entire time to this work until the program here outlined has been completed.

      Service in general It is further ordered that for the purpose of supervision and in order to have on the ground the responsible head of the controlling organization the president of the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company George E  McFarland shall go to Los Angeles and take personal charge of the matters dealt with in this opinion and order and shall remain in such charge until further order of the Commission


Offline G-Man

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Re: Where's the finger stop?
« Reply #31 on: February 12, 2016, 07:06:33 AM »
 Jack, you’ve probably have already seen this, but for the benefit of others on this forum, here is a photo from Campbell’s article, showing instruments used in Los Angeles in 1915.
 
Thanks

Offline Jack Ryan

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Re: Where's the finger stop?
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2016, 06:46:12 AM »
Thanks for the information G-Man. I'll follow it up as time permits and as additional information comes to hand - it's certainly a topic worthy of research.

I don't know what to think of this:

For one thing, if Pacific was not directly involved, then the CPUC would not have had the authority to force Pacific’s president to move to SoCal nor consider forcing the president of AT&T to do likewise.


I would have thought that only court of law could dictate where one can live and only after a conviction resulting in a custodial sentence. The CPUC can ask "with menace" and compliance may be granted if the "victim" concludes that it would be better in the long run to comply. The CPUC would otherwise be on very thin (legal) ice.

Thanks again for the information - it is much appreciated.

Regards
Jack

Offline G-Man

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Re: Where's the finger stop?
« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2016, 08:25:08 AM »
 Yes it was extremely intimidating but remember in 1922 the authorities were not always mindful of individual rights as they are now.
 
However, as you say, the ruling probably could have been challenged in civil court if McFarland had wished to, but he probably figured that they were walking on egg-shells as it were.
 
Besides, he may have wanted to move to Los Angeles and live in a comfortable abode with all expenses paid for by the company. After all, situated next door to Beverly Hills and Hollywood, he would have had the perfect opportunity to write-off those expenses while mingling with the affected subscribers.
 
Service in general - It is further ordered that for the purpose of supervision and in order to have on the ground the responsible head of the controlling organization, the president of the Pacific Telephone and Telegraph Company. George E. McFarland shall go to Los Angeles and take personal charge of the matters dealt with in this opinion and order and shall remain in such charge until further order of the Commission.

Offline Jack Ryan

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Re: Where's the finger stop?
« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2016, 11:20:53 AM »
In this case perhaps Mr McFarland suggested to the commissioner a suitable punishment that might help mitigate the telephone problems.

It seems I have plenty to catch up on.

Thanks again
Jack

Offline AE_Collector

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  • AE 2 - AECo's 1st Self Contained Desk Phone 1925
Great info guys. The topic quickly went in another direction from Brinybay's initial enquiry but it all added up to a real good discussion. I decided to retitle the topic to give a better idea what it was about. Hopefully Briny doesn't mind too much. Let me know if the new topic isn't quite right for any reason. I puzzled somewhat over choosing a suitable topic name.

It always seems to me that very few Strowger phones materialize showing evidence as having been in use in the LA area. Most Strowger sets seem to have hidden in barns in Canada waiting to be discovered years later. Likely a result of the Bell System rather than private owners and/or Provincial Governments having owned the phones being removed from service I would guess. IE: The Bell owned phones may have more meticulously been scrapped and recycled.

Terry

Offline Jim Stettler

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Great info guys. The topic quickly went in another direction from Brinybay's initial enquiry but it all added up to a real good discussion. I decided to retitle the topic to give a better idea what it was about. Hopefully Briny doesn't mind too much. Let me know if the new topic isn't quite right for any reason. I puzzled somewhat over choosing a suitable topic name.

It always seems to me that very few Strowger phones materialize showing evidence as having been in use in the LA area. Most Strowger sets seem to have hidden in barns in Canada waiting to be discovered years later. Likely a result of the Bell System rather than private owners and/or Provincial Governments having owned the phones being removed from service I would guess. IE: The Bell owned phones may have more meticulously been scrapped and recycled.

Terry


Gordon Gerdes in Canada found many of the Strowger sets. He ran into an old installer who removed them from service and resold them as as Intercoms to many farms. Gordon drove around with the installer and the guy pointed out some of the farms he sold the strowger sets to. Gordon went back and bought as many sets as he could.  He showed me a photo that had over 20 strowger sticks and many more compact wood sets. Gordon also commissioned reproduction buttons for the wood sets and dial faceplates for strowger dials. He is a member of ATCA. He used to bring a couple of sticks and 3-4 wood sets to the KS show every year, he always seemed to sell out. I got my wood set from Gordon..
Jim S.
You live, You learn,
You die, you forget it all.