Albion Interactive History / Businesses / Albion Telephone Exchange

Albion Interactive History

Albion Interactive History / Industry

Albion Telephone Exchange, 100 S. Superior St., 1884

The first telephone exchange in Albion was opened in April 1884 by HenryMosher at 204 S. Superior St. There was a ten-line board with a split plug. Thefirst toll line was built from Battle Creek to Marshall, then to Albion in 1883,with no exchange in the city and only one public telephone. The first telephoneoperator in this city was Miss Lucy Saleyles who later moved to Hillsdale. Thefirst subscribers were W. B. Knickerbocker, Albion Milling Company; H.W. Mosher,313 Michigan Avenue; M.B. Wood, Mulberry Street; Lake Shore and MichiganSouthern freight house; and Michigan Central freight house. John Perine’sgrocery store was the first to have a telephone.

Albion was one of the firstsmall towns to put in all-night service with less than 125 stations. Theexchange was moved from its first location to 103 West Porter Street in July1884, where it remained for a year before moving to 300 S. Superior St. In 1898the city system was rebuilt by the foreman, Al Wall, with Idaho cedars, 55 and60 feet long.

On January 1, 1900 the exchange was moved to 100 S. Superiorstreet, with 211 stations. In 1910 it was cut from magneto to common batterywith H. L. Norton as wire chief and Artie Kyte in charge. In 1920 the citysystem was rebuilt again under foreman Charles Jones, providing one of the mostup to date plants in the state. In 1922, 60 additional stations were added andin 1925 the board had been outgrown again, so that the Western Electric companyhad to rebuilt it from 800 to 1100 stations. K65

Source: Miriam Krenerick. Albion’s Milestones and Memories. Albion, MI: Art Craft Press. 1932.

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