SYLACAUGA, Alabama – A copy of the 1962 Sylacauga-Childersburg phone book illustrates how different life was 59 years ago.

The small format looked a lot like a Reader’s Digest magazine. Its introduction and phone number lists spanned 58 pages, and 83 more were devoted to a Yellow Pages business directory.

Published calling rates show that a three-minute conversation with a friend in New Orleans would have cost $ 1.00 per minute on weekdays and $ 0.75 per night and Sunday. Adjusted for inflation, this works out to between $ 6.78 and $ 9.04 today. Calling friends in Los Angeles: more than double.

Operators have always been referred to as women. To make a long distance call, the instructions were to “Dial the“ Operator ”and give them the area code (or city) and the phone number you are calling”. You can make peer-to-peer or person-to-person calls, or even call collect for the recipient to pay.

In your home, you could “enjoy the convenience of additional step-saving phones” which came “in many beautiful decorative colors.” The Princess phone, with its unique luminous dial, was particularly popular.

Separate paid ads for 47 local businesses appeared in the commercial section. Only two of them still exist – Earlyne’s Flowers and Jackson’s Trace Motel – with only the latter in the same location.

Click on any of the listings for a full view. What is there now at these addresses?


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