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BELL SYSTEM PUBLICATIONS

The Bell System produced numerous publications to communicate news, product features and technical details to a variety of audiences.  This page highlights a few of the ongoing publications and some reference books by or about the Bell System that are of particular interest to telephone collectors.

Bell System Practices (BSPs) are especially interesting sources of technical details,
and are described on a separate page.  Follow the BSP link below.

Information was gathered from collector observations.
Please send additions and corrections.


©2008-16 paulf.  All rights reserved.
Before copying anything from this site, follow this link.



ON THIS PAGE:     PERIODICALS    CATALOGS    BOOKS AND BOOKLETS   ALMANAC
 
RELATED PAGES ON THIS SITE:     BSPs       COLORS      WE SETS (Links on Home Page)  


PERIODICALS

Bell System Organization
Publication Name
Content and Audience
Start Year*
AT&T
Bell System Technical Journal
Bell Telephone Quarterly
  (became Bell Telephone Magazine)
AT&T Annual Report
Telephone Almanac (annual)

Paid Subscription
News and product info for
  Bell System Management
News for Stockholders
Info for Subscribers

1922
1922 - 1940
   1941
1900
1922 - 1963
 (except 1945)
Western Electric
WE News
The Microphone
The Dial Tone
WE Magazine

WE News Features

The Engineer (quarterly)
Employee News
Hawthorne Works Employees
Indianapolis Employees
News and product info for
  Employees and PR Staff
News and product info for
  Editors and Bell System PR
Paid Subscription
1912 - 1932
1931 - 1985
1949
1949

 --

1957
Bell Telephone Laboratories
Bell Laboratories Record
The Reporter
BTL "Members" and external
BTL "Members"
1923
1952


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Bell of Pennsylvania and
Diamond State Telephone (Delaware)
The Telephone News
The Bell Ringer
PBX Call
Employee News
Sales Department News

1905
 -
1943
New England Telephone
Telephone Topics
Employee News 1907
Wisconsin Telephone
Wisconsin Telephone News
Employee News 1907
Pacific Telephone and
Nevada Bell (Subsidiary of Pacific Tel)
Pacific Telephone Magazine
Employee News 1907, July
Southern New England Telephone
The Telephone Bulletin
Employee News 1908
New York Telephone
Telephone Review
Employee News 1910
Cincinnati Bell
Cincinnati Telephone Bulletin
Employee News 1910
Indiana Bell
Indiana Telephone News
Employee News 1911
Mountain States Telephone The Monitor Employee News 1911
Illinois Bell
Bell Telephone News
Telenews (biweekly)
Employee News
Employee News
1912
~1965
Chesapeake & Potomac Telephone
   C&P of Virginia
The Transmitter
News Topics
Employee News
Employee News
1913
-
Southern Bell
Southern Telephone News
Bell Telephone News
Employee News
Employee News
1913
1925
Southwestern Bell
Southwestern Telephone News
Scene
Telephone Times (biweekly)
Employee News
Employee News
Employee News
1913
1963
< 1968
Michigan Bell The Michigan Bell
Tie Lines (biweekly)
Employee News
Employee News
< 1920
1965
Northwestern Bell The Northwestern Bell
Northwestern Bell News
Employee News
Employee News
1921
1970
Ohio Bell Ohio Bell Employee News 1924
New Jersey Bell
New Jersey Bell
Employee News 1928
Pacific Northwest Bell
  (Split from Pacific Tel on 2/1/60)**
Cascades Employee News 1961
South Central Bell
  (Split from Southern Bell on 12/20/67)**
-
Employee News -
Publications are monthly unless noted otherwise.
 
Bell System employee publications typically include local interest stories plus articles from press releases issued by AT&T, Western Electric and Bell Telephone Laboratories.
 
Much of the info was found from my library and internet searches, with additions from John Andrews, Steve Cichorsky, Russ Cowell, Frank Harrell and Richard Romanko.  Thanks!
 

* Start Year shows the year and month of Volume I, Number 1 issue (if known). 
    Otherwise, the Start Year is calculated by subtracting the volume number from the publication year of a found later issue and adding 1
      (and possibly modifying the result based on the starting month of the publication year).
** Organization dates are found in "Events In Telecommunications History," AT&T, 1992.


CATALOGS


Major Western Electric (WE) and Graybar telephone and full line catalogs.


Presented in chronological order for ease in locating a catalog to find a phone of known date.

WE Telephone Apparatus and Supplies Catalogs: 2,3,4,5,6,7,8 (1930-31), 9, 10 and 11.
Graybar General Catalogs: 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105 and 106.
Graybar Telephone Catalogs: 10S, 11S and 12T.

In addition, many specialty catalogs and bulletins were published.

WE Electrical Supply "Yearbooks" were published in (at least)
1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920, 1922 and 1924.
 
A Graybar Electrical Supply Yearbook published for 1926-27
introduced the name change from the WE Supply Department to Graybar Electric Co.


Catalog
Publication Date
Notes
- -
1882
Western Electric catalog - includes Gilliland acquisition, 24 pages
- - 1883
General Descriptive Circular - Telephone Apparatus and Supplies
"Catalog 2"
 (unmarked)
1907,
1908 (2nd ed.)
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Supplies, 107, 169 pages;
     (There was also a 1908 full line WE catalog, 838 pages)
Catalog 3
1916
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Supplies, 404 pages
Catalog 4
1922
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Supplies
Catalog 5
1923
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Supplies, 336 pages
Catalog 6
1925
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Supplies, 350 pages
Catalog 100
1926
Graybar Catalog, 1085 pages  (1926 - 1930 ?)
Catalog 7
1929
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Supplies, 398 pages
  - Some with and some without Graybar logo
Catalog 8
1930
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Cable
 --
1930-31
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Cable and Graybar Supplies, 360 pages
Catalog 101
1934
Graybar Catalog, 733ages
Catalog 9
1935
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Cable,  Graybar logo, 389 pages
Catalog 10
1939
Western Electric Telephone Apparatus and Cable, NO Graybar logo, 299 pages
Catalog 10S
1940
Graybar Telephone Supplies Catalog, 180 pages
Catalog 102
1941
Graybar Catalog, 1072 pages
Catalog 11S
1947
Graybar Telephone Supplies Catalog
Catalog 103
1948
Graybar General Catalog, 1116 pages
Catalog 11
1950
Western Electric, 332 pages
Catalog 104
1952
Graybar General Catalog, 1352 pages
Catalog 105
1953
Graybar General Catalog, >1600 pages   (1958 ?)
Catalog 12T
1957
Graybar Telephone Catalog, 482 pages
Catalog 115
1958
Graybar General Catalog, 1628 pages
 --
1963
WE Telephone Apparatus and Cable - Defense Activities Division (for US Government), 340 pages
Catalog 13
1966

Catalog 106
1967
Graybar General Catalog, 1116 pages
Catalog 14D
1969

Catalog 32
1973
Graybar Catalog
Catalog 15C
1975

 --
1970
 WE Telephone Apparatus and Equipment - Defense Activities Division (for US Government), 824 pages
Catalog 35
1977
Graybar Catalog, 277 pages
Catalog 17C
1979

Catalog 19C
1987
Graybar Telecom Products


BOOKS AND BOOKLETS

Title
Publication Date(s)
Notes
Events in Telecommunication History
various, including
  1964, 1970, 1974, 1992
AT&T, PR Department
A History of Engineering & Science in the Bell System
  1: The Early Years, 1875-1925
  2: National Service in War & Peace, 1925-1975
  3: Switching Technology, 1925-1975
  4: Physical Sciences, 1925-1980
  5: Communications Sciences, 1925-1980
  6: Electronics Technology, 1925-1975
  7: Transmission Technology, 1925-1975
 
Engineering and Operations in the Bell System

1975
1978
1982
1983
1984
1985
1985
 
1977, 1983
Bell Laboratories
ISBN: 9781114515130
ISBN: 0-932764-00-2
ISBN: 0-932764-02-9
ISBN: 0-932764-03-7
ISBN: 0-932764-06-1
ISBN: 0-932764-07-X
ISBN: 0-932764-08-8
 
ISBN: 0-932764-04-5
Mission Communications: The Story of Bell Laboratories
1975
by Prescott C. Mabon
Bell System Almanacs
1922-44, 1946-63
(see below)
Western Electric and the Bell System
1964
by Albert B. Iardella
Bell Laboratories
1972
by Arthur Gregor

Telephone Almanac

Published annually from 1922-44 and 1946-63.

Bell System Telephone Almanacs - 1922 & 1963

The almanac was one of many marketing brochures that were published to increase public awareness and promote the accomplishments, history and progress of the Bell System. Its purpose, modestly stated on the title page of the 1922 issue, is as follows:

  • Containing valuable information for the guidance of Farmers, Navigators, Business Men, Housewives and other users of the Telephone.
  • Including the Phases of the Moon and like Astronomical Data.
  • Together with certain biographical and historical Facts relative to Men and Events of importance in the Arts, Sciences and Literature.
  • And also a chronicle of twelve Historical Events in the History of these United States which serve to illustrate the importance of Communications in shaping the Destiny of the Nation and in bringing its several Commonwealths together into a single united National Community.
  • To which are added sundry Facts, which will be found profitable for perusal relative to the development of the Science of Communications in general.
  • And more particularly, a Compendium of fascinating Information in regard to the Telephone, its Invention, its Development and its present Importance; Descriptive Matter as to the Bell Telephone System, the Men and Women who compose it, and the Buildings, Poles, Wires, Cables and divers other Mechanical Contrivances and Instruments which constitute its Material Equipment.
  • And various authoritative Items which will be found useful to all who seek secure and remunerative Investment for their Monies.

Information Department
American Telephone and Telegraph Company
195 Broadway, New York

This introduction was gradually shortened in following issues.

The front covers were labeled either Bell System, AT&T or with the name of one of the operating companies (e.g. New England Tel. & Tel.)

1956-60 and 1961-63 issues included a color four-page center spread featuring promoted services and color phones -- notably 1956 (two- and four-color 500 sets), 1958 (color and experimental telephones), 1960 (Princess introduction), 1962 (Interphones) and 1963 (card dialer).

Color image from the 1958 Almanac
from the 1958 Almanac


More references can be found through these links:

  http://www.porticus.org/bell/references.html
  http://www.porticus.org/bell/books.html



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©2008-16 paulf.  All rights reserved.