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This very worn and faded 16mm print is still a classic example of the kind of films I saw in school way back when. "I've fallen and I can't get up!!!" It's kids to the rescue - at home, on the ball field, everywhere... and lots of cool neato shots of the fire station and police dispatch switchboards. Looks like a lot of fun! Enjoy!
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13 thoughts on “Telephone for help! 1968”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Saddest Chord says:

    Guess if you didn't have any pocket change, you were just screwed? By the time I came up, you could dial 0 or 911 without having to put money in a pay phone.

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Green Lint says:

    All these people are likely a bit smarter than people these days calling for help. And the operators are also more likely to be helpful. The technology is great these days, but I have to wonder if the response times are any better..

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Eliot Brown says:

    Things don't look for Bobby's Aunt. Both kids don't seem to have ever used a phone before. This is the world before 911… or touch tone. By the time the apparatus got to Joyce's place– the mom with the fire hose– must've gotten into the garage where… what happened now? She succumbed to the smoke is my guess.

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Diane Greene says:

    My mother was a telephone operator when people had to jiggle the hang-up flipper and the operator answered it. Later I worked on a switchboard that had the long cables with plugs on the end and labeled sockets to plug into.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bart JustBart says:

    MY! you HAVE been busy lately! Thanks Fran. your work is appreciated. and your films are now preserved for all time. I have been a long time fan of the Prelinger Archive.. and of you 🙂

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars /* y0u d0n'T kn0w mE */ says:

    LOL everything is just simply 9 1 1 today (the US)
    We lived in a small town for 2 years in the late 80s, their emergency number was 788-8888 (try dialing that quickly on a rotary… yeesh)
    Is dialing zero for an opetator still even a thing today?

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars PARADOXICLES says:

    dial 0 for emergencies? this must have been made in January because google says "The first call to 911 was placed in February of 1968"
    and it costs money for emergency calls? how many people died because no one had change, or not enough of it?

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars amoruzz says:

    Good stuff.
    Everything was manual.
    My mom worked at a telephone company as an operator for awhile and she was bad about leaving the keys in the ignition at work.
    My dad used to tell this story about an escaped juvenile delinquent that stole his newly purchased 1964 two door hardtop Chevrolet Malibu from her work. The boy got over 400 miles away before he was captured. Dad had to charter a small plane to go get the car and drive it back. I love seeing all those classic cars in these films.
    There were some monster's on the road back then!
    I watch reruns of one Adam 12 just to look at the cars.
    Also to watch the culture and police interactions with citizens back then.
    Good film, thanks again!

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Shaun Tremayne says:

    In Uk even before WWII we had one number to call a special operator to put us through to police, ambulance,fire and coast guard good old 999 which is also used in countries connected to UK. We can also dial 911 and 112 nowadays.

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Haweater says:

    Today's Automatic Number Identification (non-blockable Caller ID), computerized location map display and keyboard entry dispatching has made a quantum leap forward in emergency services.

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Hola! Rick Maudlin says:

    Loved it, especially the old radios and consoles.
    However… Never send a child back into a burning building to call for help. HAHA we've come so far.

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Rob says:

    I remember from those days that we also had local phone numbers for police, ambulance and fire brigade that were pn the back side of the telephone directory and also often on stickers that you could stick on your phone…
    Only later we got a unified emergency number 0611 later changed to 112.

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Kelvin Park says:

    We had the simple 999 number in the UK since 1937. 911 was being rolled out around at the time of this film. Both numbers are pretty much used worldwide now and mobile (cell) phones automatically recognise them and will connect to the nearest available network (regardless of your subscription).

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