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Number Please: 1917

Number Please: 1917

November 14, 1917. "New York Telephone." A service flag denoting 1,009 telephone employees in the armed forces. View full size. George Grantham Bain Collection. From 1917, a New York Times article on service flags.


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Make that Ionic

On second look, it seems to be Ionic. How ironic.

AT & T Building

That looks like the AT&T Building, on lower Broadway, one of my favorite buildings in lower Manhattan. It's just Doric order, stacked up about 22 floors. It's now the back half of the Millenium Hotel, if I'm not mistaken, which faces (faced) the World Trade Center. There's a pyramid on the top, which held a large bronze statue of a lady holding lightning bolts. That statue is now in the lobby of the new Philip Johnson AT&T building on 53rd St.

Service Flag

My dad was an employee at the Western Electric works in Chicago (drawing cable) when he entered service in WWII in the USAAF. So this service flag made me think of him.

When he entered, the company stated he could have his position back upon his return - I recall seeing a letter saying so. They were true to their word.

So employed after the war, plus the benefits of the GI Bill to get a formal education, saw him becoming an Engineer and finally retiring from WE with 40+ years under his belt.

Amazing times then. Would a company today offer anything like that guarantee?

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