Stromberg Carlson Telephone Manufacturing Co. 1894 “Coffee Grinder”


1894 model no. 1 (Stromberg-Carlson Telephone Manufacturing Company)
Stromberg-Carlson Telephone Manufacturing Company
Outstanding original condition, reproduced switch hook assembly


You have to admit that this isn't one of the more stylish telephones ever made, but it certainly is historically significant. In their rush to compete with Bell Telephone, Stromberg-Carlson introduced this as their very first upright telephone in 1894. Some call it a "coffee grinder" because of the crank on the side.  It is extremely heavy, made of metal mounted on a wooden base. The metal has obviously aged a lot and turned rusty green. This also has the very earliest Stromberg-Carlson receiver. The switch hook assembly on this telephone has been reproduced after years of searching for the correct switch hook. Upon finding a Stromberg Carlson wall phone from 1894 with this exact switch hook assembly, I had it made as an exact replica. It fit the upright telephone perfectly and is believed to be the correct switch hook. This transmitter has the number 23 stamped on the faceplate so it is conceivable that this is the 23rd telephone off the manufacturing floor. This telephone is in fantastic original condition except for the reproduced switch hook. The scans are from original Stromberg-Carlson advertisements showing this as their very first telephone. Stromberg-Carlson was sold to General Dynamics in 1955 and one of the scans show this telephone in a General Dynamics publication touting this telephone as an engineering marvel in 1894.


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