TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Color 3 Slot Payphones; Phones on Brady Bunch

Re: Color 3 Slot Payphones; Phones on Brady Bunch

Anthony Bellanga (
Mon, 24 Jul 2006 21:07:44 -0600

PAT - DO NOT display my email address anywhere in this post! Thanks.
******************************************************************** wrote:

> An old "Brady Bunch" episode showed the parents using 3 slot
> pay phones in a fancy restaurant. They were beige. While the
> vast majority of Bell System 3 slot pay phones were black, in
> some places they did use colors; I've seen beige in many places.

The third color for 3-slotters that was sometimes used was green.
I've heard that in some cases, the telephone company might even paint
a 3-slot payphone some "unusual" color (for an extra fee, I assume),
such as red or blue. But the three standard colors, in order of how
common they were, were black, then beige, then green.

I know that Western Electric's single-slot payphones, that first came
out circa mid-1960s, have been mostly black/gray/chrome, but there are
also some that are green/chrome (with some gray). I don't remember if
beige (with gray and chrome) was ever used.

As for the Brady Bunch, there is also that first season episode (when
the kids and parents were squeaky clean-cut, before they all became
"hippy-dippy"), where Mike Brady puts in a payphone line for the kids
to use, since they were hogging the one phone for the entire family,
and running up huge bills. This was in 1969/70. The payphone was a
3-slotter, and I think it was also beige -- and rotary dial. Mike
Brady reverts back to a standard residential phone at the end of the

I read on a tribute website about the Brady Bunch that for all five
original ABC-TV seasons (1969-74), they NEVER had a touchtone phone at
all in the house. They always had a standard rotary dial phone. Since
the setting was southern California, I wonder if it could be assumed
that they were always served by a "Step-by-Step" office, and one which
didn't have DTMF to DP converters! Afterall, Mike would have been able
to afford Pacific Telephone's monthly touchtone surcharges! :-)

Post Followup Article Use your browser's quoting feature to quote article into reply
Go to Next message: Anthony Bellanga: "Re: Caution: Unidentified Callers"
Go to Previous message: "Re: Color 3 Slot Payphones?"
TELECOM Digest: Home Page