1878, The World’s First Telephone Directory Issued

On February 21, 1878 the New Haven District Telephone Company issued its first list of subscribers–a broadside listing about 50 subscribers with no telephone numbers included.

This telephone directory booklet or pamphlet contained the names and addresses of 391 subscribers who paid $22 per year for service. 

The advertisers included physicians and carriage companies. Customers were limited to three minutes per call, and no more than two calls an hour without permission from the central office.

The first telephone directory, issued by the New Haven District Telephone Company, the first public telephone company in the world.


When was the first telephone book issued?

21st February 1878. The telephone directory widely considered to be the absolute first phone book was nothing but a sheet of cardboard with the names of both private people and businesses who had a telephone.

Where was the first telephone directory published?

New Haven, Connecticut. The first telephone directory was published on 21 February 1878 in the USA. It was a single piece of cardboard that listed 50 individuals and businesses with telephones in New Haven, Connecticut

Who invented the telephone directory?

Within two years after Alexander Graham Bell first patented the revolutionary communication device, Coy and his company had implemented a number of innovations — like the switchboard and the telephone directory — which would define the way the entire world came to use the telephone.

What was the world’s first phone number?

The number is now written as 1-212-736-5000. According to the hotel’s website, PEnnsylvania 6-5000 is New York’s oldest continually assigned telephone number and possibly the oldest continuously-assigned number in the world.

How many names did the first telephone book have?

50. The first telephone directory, consisting of a single piece of cardboard, was issued on 21 February 1878; it listed 50 individuals, businesses, and other offices in New Haven, Connecticut that had telephones.

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