Message #250 Date: Sun, 18 Oct 1998 17:02:13 Subject: Washington-Alpha Telephone, 1852-1867 [ AzTeC / SWA SASIG ] : [ SASIG Ed. Note -- firstname.lastname@example.org is an architectural researcher interested in industrial archaeology, specifically the documentation and interpretation of the ruins and artifacts of the electrical infrastructure that has developed over the last 150+ years; http://www.sirius.com/~schizo/ http://www.sirius.com/~schizo/projects/mea/mea_m.htm ] From: Roc H. Indermill email@example.com Regarding schizo's e-mail inquiry of 22 Sep 1998, my crew and I recorded a telephone line erected between Washington and the Alpha hydraulic gold mine in Nevada County, California. This mine was in operation between ca. 1852 and 1867. The telephone line linked the mine's administration office in Washington with its field office. It was a single bare ware, nailed to trees. Most of the mile or so that we investigated was still hanging in place. We believed that it was the first telephone line built in California. I recorded my observations in a draft survey report tentatively entitled "The Helimega Timber Sale..." The report was never finished because the US Forest Service dropped the timber sale. My draft should still be on file at the Nevada City Ranger District, Tahoe National Forest, Coyote Street and 49th Street, Nevada City, CA, 95959. You may be able to acquire a copy of my draft from District Archaeologist Bill Slater, at the above address. I do not have a personal copy. I recently [completed] a job on the Bighorn National Forest in north-central Wyoming. A single telephone line there linked the Burgess Ranger Station, where I was living, to three lodges and as many as four other subscribers. I understand that this telephone line was last upgraded in 1922. Transmission and reception across this single bare wire was unintelligible at times during my three-month tenure. It was said that you could not use it whenever the wind blew, and the wind almost never stopped blowing there.