Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Treasure Chest Thursday-Old Phones

Treasure Chest Thursday is one of the daily blogging themes of Geneabloggers.

Our family treasure featured today is a set of old phones from my Grandparents Bill and Isabel Irvine’s farm near Young, Saskatchewan.  The wire for these old phones ran on the barb wire fences between farms.

Barb Wire PhoneBarb Wire Phone

Old Phone c. 1940s


5 Responses to “Treasure Chest Thursday-Old Phones”
  1. Tom Osborn says:

    Would it be possible to have your permission to use the photos of the barbed wire telephones for an educational resource that will be sent out free to schools all over the UK? This part of the resource goes through the history of communication technology, and the barbed wire telephone is a great little story in the development of the telephone. As I say it would be given out free and would not be used for any other purposes. please let me know. Thanks in advance

  2. Hi Tom,
    Thanks for your note. Yes, you have my permission (and please credit me somewhere – back page is fine). These barb wire phones were used in rural Saskatchewan.


  3. kj says:

    I have a phone like this that my dad bought at a year sale. Do you know the value of the phone

  4. Hi KJ,
    Unfortunately I don’t know the value of this old phone. Perhaps check online antique forums?
    If you find the value, can you let me know?


  5. B. Kerr says:

    Hi Joan and Mr, Osborn
    There was an earier verson of the barbwire phone .It was set up by our neighbour boys . It was made from a small wooden box that brought the oranges from Japan, at Christmas . A small square battery was put in the box , which was fastened to the wall, in the kitchen . A hacksaw Blade was fastened to the top termanelof the battery . The wire was on the pasture fence. If you wanted to talk to one family the ring was one long ring . Our ring was one long and one short ring, Each house hold had earphones so every one listened . That got us through the long winters on the prairie and we didn’t miss any local news .

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