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Sunday, April 10, 2016

Telephones Come to New Kent

1908 Western Electric Ringer Box and Kellogg Candlestick Telephone

NEW KENT VA: The New Kent Telephone and Telegraph Company has been incorporated with $5,000 capital stock. The officers are C.L. Harrison, president: R.E. Richardson, vice-president, both of Talleysville, Va.: T.N. Harris, secretary-treasurer, New Kent.

-Telephony magazine- December 26, 1908

By the end of 1918 New Kent Telephone and Telegraph would have some 63 miles of line up in New Kent, as well as 15 miles in Hanover. To that can be added the 36 miles in New Kent belonging to Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone(C&P).

And here is some proper phone etiquette from 1908 . . .

The Bell Telephone
The "Busy" Report
We have had people tell us that operators report telephones "Busy" when the telephone is not actually in use when called for. In every such case we have been able to convince the complainant by positive evidence that such an occurrence is not possible as a matter of practice. We have not simply assumed that such a thing did not occur, but we have investigated cases of the kind many times. We have proved conclusively that the telephone was in use by a servant or a neighbor without the knowledge of the subscriber,  that the line was out of order or that the receiver had been left off the hook.
It is easier for the operator to test the line than to make a "Busy" report without testing. The supervision is so close and constant that an operator engaged in such a practice would soon be detected. Then too, our operators take a pride in their work and have absolutely no object for reporting a line "Busy" without first making the proper test.
Oftentimes when you call a store or other business place and receive a "Busy" report, the telephone is being used by some one other than the subscriber or his employees. This is one of the results of permitting the telephone to be promiscuously used, and is something we cannot control.
If you should receive a "Busy" report on a station that you think is not in use, do not argue the matter out with the operator. Report it to the proper department and we will make an honest investigation and a truthful report. Poor service hurts us worse than it does you. We are here to give good service and there are many ways in which you can help us.
For Information About Rates and Service
Call Contract Department, Number 9080
Southern Bell Telephone& Telegraph Co. of Va.
-The Times Dispatch, 26 April 1908

Southern Bell Telephone& Telegraph Co. of Va would soon become Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone.

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