Telephone Company of Canada
1880 – 1891
The Board of Directors adopted the first crest as Company By-law No. 14
on June 16, 1880 and it received the approval of the shareholders at a
special meeting on December 13 the same year. A double red band
receiver, the type used on telephone sets of the period, is depicted
along with the company’s name and date of incorporation.
1891 – 1895
This crest has the appearance of a military badge. The Blake transmitter
– named after the inventor, Francis Blake – and the double red bank
receiver appear at the bottom of the design. A telephone pole line is
illustrated in the center.
1895 – 1902
On November 29, 1895, The Bell Telephone Company of Canada obtained
authorization to use American Telephone & Telegraph Company’s “Blue
1902 – 1922
The following changes were made to the design of the logo: two stars
were added and the “Ltd” was omitted from the corporate name.
1922 – 1940
Maple leaves replaced the star, giving the logo a distinct Canadian
1940 – 1947
President Charles Fleetford Sise, Jr., approved this simpler design on
December 18, 1939. It was introduced on January 1, 1940.
1947 – 1965
President Frederick Johnson approved this new logo in April 1947. The
principal changes incorporated in the new emblem were: the substitution
of the words “Local and Long Distance Telephone” for “Service” on the
bell, the re-design of the bell, and an increase in the size and clarity
of the company name.
1965 – 1976
On July 30, 1965, President Marcel Vincent consented to modifications to
the Company logo to reinforce the Canadian identity of ownership,
management and service. The new logo displays the words “Bell Canada”
and replaces both the English and French crests. In 1968, an Act of
Parliament amended the company charter to include Bell Canada as one the
1976 – 1977
Bell art director, Colin McMichael, simplified the bell to present a
more contemporary look. Coincident with the introduction of this logo, a
new corporate signature, a stacked “Bell Canada”, made its first public
appearance. The signature and logo were not used together. In fact, the
signature spelled the eventual demise of the pictorial bell.
1977 – 1994
Don Black, corporate design manager, was one of the key persons involved
in developing this word-symbol version of the corporate logo, making its
first appearance on company vehicles in 1977. It replaced the bell
symbol that, in a succession of different forms, had served as the
company’s official symbol since 1895 and was linked in many people’s
minds with the “telephone company”. Bell was on its way to becoming much
1994 – 2008
On December 8, 1994, Bell Canada launched a distinctive new logo. At the
center is the human profile, representing Bell employees and the focus
of all their efforts, the customer. The profile is set within two open
rings, symbolizing the dynamic future of telecommunications—the ability
to transmit sound, image and data instantly, wirelessly, across all
frontiers. The Bell name appears directly beneath the profile, a graphic
representation of how the company supports customers in all their
communications needs. As our primary colour for nearly two decades, the
blue reflects and builds on tradition, but with a more vibrant tone. The
warm yellow shade represents change.
On August 8, 2008, Bell launched a new logo, tagline and advertising
campaign to underline its move forward. The new Bell logo is a strong
and clear representation of the company that proudly wears the
traditional Blue. The brand’s combination of strength and simplicity
supports the company’s strategy of delivering a better customer
experience at every level.
Bell Canada Products & Services:
Wireless, TV, Bundles, Internet and Voice
Communications for large enterprise and government
Wireless, TV, Bundles, Internet and Voice
Fiber optic and satellite delivered TV
Bell TV Online Satellite TV Guide
Bell TV Online Fibe TV Guide
Coreless & corded phones, accessories and small business
2008 Bell Canada National Network:
Click on map to view larger image of the Bell
Canada IP Backbone Map.
Bell partners with AT&T for roaming services
Bell’s transitioning to an HSPA network is no secret. As
such is the case, the Canadian carrier is making sure that everything is all
ironed out and ready to go, including US roaming, once they roll out
nationwide coverage later this year.
HERE to read the article.
HERE for the official news
release from BCE (Bell Canada Enterprises).
The following article is from the March/April 1975
Bell Telephone Magazine
BELL CANADA: A NEW BALANCE
Canada -- once described by its prime minister as "a mouse in the shadow of
an elephant" -- persistently has been nurturing a unique economic,
political, social and cultural national identity. Asserting that their
country is not "just another state," Canadians are searching for a new
balance which precludes the United States from dominating their way of life
yet retains mutually beneficial relationships between the two countries.
The same sort of search for balance has characterized decisions leading to
the June 30, 1975, termination of AT&T's service agreement with Bell Canada,
and to the subsequent relationship between the two companies.
Paralleling license contract arrangements with Bell System companies in the
United States, a succession of agreements has made Bell System research and
communications experience available to Bell Canada since 1880. The latest
service agreement, which went into effect July 1, 1949, provided for a
duration of 10 or more years until terminated by either AT&T or Bell Canada
on one year's written notice. Under these terms, in October, 1973, AT&T and
Bell Canada mutually agreed to end the service agreement, and shortly
thereafter AT&T announced it would sell its remaining Bell Canada shares.
"This parting of our corporate ways means Bell Canada is ready to stand on
its own-to serve its Canadian customers as they want to be served," reflects
AT&T Chairman John deButts. "Over the years our relationship with Bell
Canada always has been most satisfactory. It's largely a result of Bell
Canada's development of its own research and manufacturing capabilities that
we mutually agreed to terminate AT&T's ownership position at this time."
Bell Canada's Chairman Robert Scrivener concurs. "This action is just a
final step in a long process by which our ties have been changing," he says.
"Canada has its own regulatory climate, its unique geography, its own
life-styles. Through our associations with the Bell System over the years,
we in Bell Canada have been helped and encouraged to develop our own skills
and abilities- that is why Canada has telephone service equal to the best in
the world. That is why we are ready now to serve on our own."
Bell Canada historically has held a distinctive position in the Bell System.
In addition to being the only Bell System company outside the United States,
Bell Canada has experienced differences in regulatory relationships,
industry structure and ownership.
The sale of AT&T's last holdings of Bell Canada stock earlier this year, for
example, culminated a 45- year decline in proportionate AT&T ownership.
Although the number of Bell Canada common shares held by AT&T-nearly
750,000-had not changed since 1930, AT&T’s percentage of Bell Canada's total
equity had dwindled steadily. Beginning in 1933, U.S. residents were not
able to participate in Bell Canada stock issues because its shares were not
registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission; as a result, every
time new shares were issued, the proportion of the total held by AT&T was
When Bell Canada was founded in 1880, the American Bell Telephone Company,
forerunner of AT&T, provided 24.9 per cent of the equity capital. In the
company's first decade, AT&T made additional investments, and holdings
reached a peak of 48.8 per cent in 1885. Although the proportion declined
after that year, AT&T held more than one-third of Bell Canada's equity until
1923. In 1930 AT&T's holdings represented 25.1 per cent of the shares
outstanding, but in the years following World War II, proportionate AT&T
holdings diminished: When investors bought AT&T's 749,992 shares on January
27 of this year, the shares represented only 2 per cent of the Bell Canada
common shares outstanding and 1.8 per cent of total equity.
In return for paid-up Bell Canada stock, the American Bell Telephone company
agreed in 1880 to transfer to Bell Canada the Canadian patent on Alexander
Graham Bell's invention and all future patent rights in Canada for
telephones or other telephonic devices. References were made subsequently to
exchanges of information "along engineering, manufacturing and commercial
lines," but a formal contract for services rendered by AT&T to Bell Canada
was not negotiated until 1923. Under the General Service Contract of May 16
of that year, AT&T agreed, among other things, to continue "its fundamental
work of research in the science of telephony; furnish engineering
assistance; furnish advice and assistance in financial matters"; and
"exchange data and technical advice in connection with the construction,
maintenance, repair and operation of plant." For these services Bell Canada
agreed to pay a minimum amount to be increased proportionately to its gross
revenues; six years later these payments were defined as a straight
percentage of gross revenues.
The 1923 contract had been in effect for 26 years when it was superseded in
1949 by the agreement which will be terminated this summer. Providing
generally for the same services as the earlier contract, the 1949 document
specified that Bell Canada's compensation to AT&T for services would be
either one per cent of gross revenues or the percentage paid by the U.S.
companies, whichever was less; it ended the 1880 and 1923 agreements and
provided new arrangements concerning mutual patent rights between the two
Although the 1949 service agreement provides specifically for a termination
procedure, the decision to terminate has fostered considerable
soul-searching on both sides of the border: ramifications of the termination
go far beyond the sale of Bell Canada stock.
"It raises some fundamental questions," declares W. Brooke Tunstall,
director of corporate planning studies, who heads coordination of the
transition for AT&T. "We're dealing with our relationship not just to Bell
Canada alone but also to the entire Canadian telecommunications industry and
the quality of service that exists in and between the two countries. The
question is not primarily how to terminate the relationship. Rather, we must
determine what the Bell System posture with the Canadian telecommunications
industry- including Bell Canada-should be after June 30."
Bell Canada and its nine operating subsidiaries serve most of the eastern
half of Canada, together accounting for 70 per cent of Canada's 11.7 million
telephones. General Telephone subsidiaries in British Columbia and
northeastern Quebec serve another 12 per cent of Canada's telephones;
Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba have provincially owned systems, and
there is a municipally owned system in Edmonton, Alberta, making up another
15 per cent; scattered small independent companies serve about 3 per cent of
the market. Bell Canada has service agreements with most major Canadian
companies (excluding General Telephone subsidiaries), furnishing services
much like those AT&T furnishes to Bell Canada.
Bell Canada's manufacturing subsidiary, Northern Electric, serves a
substantial portion of the Canadian equipment market, and Bell Northern
Research, held jointly by Bell Canada and Northern Electric, is the research
and development arm for both companies. Although Western Electric provided
capital when Northern Electric was formed in 1914, its ownership soon
settled to less than half; following the Consent Decree of 1956, Western
disposed of its Northern Electric stock, and its dealings with Northern
Electric today are essentially the same as its dealings with other equipment
manufacturers. Northern Electric owns a number of subsidiaries, including
Northern Telcom, which manufactures and sells equipment in the U.S.
It is no coincidence that Bell Canada's structure resembles the integrated
Bell System pattern, according to Wilfred Anderson, who is Bell Canada’s
vice president-engineering and planning and Tunstall's counterpart for the
transition. "Just as Bell Laboratories and Western Electric have grown to
serve the Bell System, so have we in Canada developed research and
manufacturing capabilities to meet Canadian service, regulatory and
financial needs. Northern Electric and Bell Northern Research likewise are
vital to the high-quality, low-cost service Bell Canada offers: without this
kind of structure, Bell Canada would find it difficult to achieve this level
Two other entities play major roles in Canadian telecommunications. The
Trans-Canada Telephone System (TCTs), a consortium of the major companies,
including Bell Canada, serves a planning and coordinating role for
inter-province and U.S.-Canada service. Similar in some respects to AT&T's
Long Lines, the TCTS differs because it does not own or operate facilities:
individual members own and operate the facilities within their own
territories. The second major entity is the federally owned Canadian
overseas Telecommunications Corporation (COTc), which handles traffic
outside of the North American network.
Concern for network
The network has been a key concern for both parties in planning for the
termination and will be the basis for a continuous-although
altered-relationship between TCTS member companies and the Bell System.
"The present high quality and low cost of service between the U.S. and
Canada are dependent upon a smoothly functioning, integrated North American
network," asserts Anderson. "The network is planned, designed, engineered
and operated as a single entity: “The fact that two countries are involved
is all but ignored in most instances.
Four items are essential to the maintenance of the integrated network:
• A unified numbering plan so that special access codes are not required for
• Alternate-route switching based on traffic volumes, for efficient use of
• Day-to-day management of the network, involving dealings between Long
Lines, TCTs and switching centers in both the U.S. and Canada. (Two of the
12 regional network switching centers are in Canada: one in Montreal and one
in Regina, Saskatchewan.)
• Compatible signaling and transmission standards throughout the network.
Since announcement of the termination, Bell Canada and AT&T teams have been
planning to assure that these elements are maintained. "We already have a
pattern established between the Bell System and the U.S. independent
telephone companies," Tunstall points out. "The key issue is a vehicle
permitting the exchange of information that is required to maintain the
North American network-we need to share enough information with all the
Canadian companies about our plans and technical standards to support the
unified DDD numbering plan, the alternate-route switching, day-to-day
network management, and unified signaling and transmission standards."
The vehicle is the TCTS, with which precedent for a relationship already
exists. Under terms of a 1971 interconnection and service agreement between
AT&T and consortium members, Long Lines deals through TCTS with Canadian
telephone companies, including Bell Canada, in planning and operating the
North American network. After the termination, Long Lines will expand this
contact role with the TCTS, since the latter organization, rather than Bell
Canada, will be the point to which information will flow directly. A new
Canadian relations manager at Long Lines will be responsible for day-to-day
transactions with the consortium. The manager will be the principal link
between the Bell System and the Canadian telephone companies, just as the
Bell-Independent managers are with U.S. independent telephone companies.
Untangling other AT&T-Bell Canada relationships has been perhaps a more
difficult task than resolving network concerns.
"When you take stock of a relationship that's grown over nearly a century,
you begin to realize the vast scope it now covers," Anderson says. "AT&T has
been a very useful sounding board for exchange of new ideas. This easy
relationship is going to be missed by our people, particularly staff groups
who are used to a good deal of contact, but that's not to say that Bell
Canada is ill-prepared for the termination.
"Planning really started after the Consent Decree in 1956, when we
recognized that we would be less dependent in the future on AT&T and Western
Electric. At the same time, we began to identify certain needs peculiar to
Canada. For example, we had a special requirement for a very small packaged
central office, and we manufactured a significant number of these. With the
gradual introduction of new Canadian systems and technology, there was a
need to develop supportive practices and training material. More recently,
as our environment has continued to diverge from that of the Bell System, we
have developed appropriate measurement plans and information systems."
How to conclude joint projects already under way without jeopardizing either
company's contribution has been the subject of continuing negotiation.
"We have been seeking a clear resolution of all issues," Tunstall says, "in
order to bring about a fair and amicable settlement with minimum transition
costs and intervals."
In general, Bell Canada no longer will participate in cost-sharing projects
after June 30; however, Bell Canada participation will continue in projects
which can be completed shortly after that date. Some aspects, such as data
systems development, are expected to require a longer transition period to
permit Bell Canada to build up its ability to take over maintenance. In
other areas, the same policies and procedures will apply to Bell Canada and
Northern Electric-as well as to the other Canadian firms-as apply to other
foreign companies. In addition:
• Centralized training will be available where there is a strong need to
know (network management, for example) and on the same basis as U.S.
• Royalty-free patent rights will be granted to Bell Canada only for patents
already in use; Western Electric will be responsible for all other patent
• Bell Canada will retain the right to use information previously supplied
for telephone operations.
• The handful of employees on rotational assignments will return to their
home companies by the termination date.
• Bell Canada will continue to use the Bell name in Canada.
As Canadians and Americans are hammering out these kinds of solutions to the
myriad of issues the termination raises, there is personal nostalgia for the
historic vital partnership that is being altered so fundamentally.
"Many telephone people in the U.S. have expressed regret that regular
contacts with their Bell Canada counterparts will end," says Tunstall. "We
have learned to expect good ideas from Bell Canada people, and for them to
send topflight employees for assignments at '195' and as instructors in Bell
"Bell Canada and our affiliates could not have achieved our present strength
and capability without our Bell System heritage," says Scrivener, who is
1974-75 president of the Telephone Pioneers, "but the personal friendships
and associations I have gained with Bell System people transcend any legal
or organizational relationships. Above all is the respect I have developed
for the integrity and capability of the men and women throughout the Bell
"We have shared a great history," deButts told Scrivener last fall at the
Pioneer General Assembly. "I wish you a great future, and I see no end to
the comradeship that binds us as telephone people .... "
In spite of these kinds of feelings, however, there is agreement that the
arm's-length relationship sought between the two companies will suit more
correctly the needs of both and tip the scales in favor of the new balance
for which both have been searching. Inherent in the transition, as well, is
a reaffirmation of the wisdom of an integrated structure, which Bell Canada
has exploited to develop its own competence and which the Bell system will
call upon (through Long Lines) to maintain the North American network after
Statistics for 1975:
• (GTE ==> 12% (1.4 Million Phones)
• (Government Owned ==> 17% (2 Million Phones)
• (Bell Canada ==> 60% (7.1 Million Phones)
• (Bell Canada Subsidiaries ==> 8% (0.9 Million Phones)
• (Independents ==> 3% (0.3 Million Phones)
Changes in the Bell
System ties with Bell Canada up to 1975
information was sent by
TeleManagement Group. (As of 1999)
Historically, Canada has had separate phone companies in each province,
although Bell Canada operates in two. We never had an equivalent of
AT&T which owned local phone companies. Instead, we had local
(provincial) phone companies which formed a consortium to handle
interprovincial calling, etc.
is the incumbent telco in British Columbia, the westernmost province of
Canada. It has long been majority owned by GTE. BC Tel recently (this
year) merged with Telus, the Alberta telephone company. The merged company
is 26% owned by GTE.
Bell Canada is
the current name of the Bell Telephone Company of Canada. Its operating
territory is the provinces of Ontario and Quebec.
was part of the U.S. Bell system and minority (2%) owned by AT&T until
the 1970s, when it became completely separate. This year (1999), Ameritech
bought 20% of Bell Canada.
Bell Canada is
majority owned by BCE Inc., a holding company which also owns Nortel and
other telecom companies. Bell Canada itself owns substantial parts of
several other Canadian phone companies.
The following photos were sent courtesy of former Bell
Canada employee, T.J. Logie, and they depict a 60's era Bell Canada
Splicer. Thank you to T.J. Logie who not only supplied the photos,
but also spent much time and dedication in restoring the Bell Canada Splicer.
I would like to contribute a photo or two of a 1960's
era Bell Canada Splicers Tool Cart that I restored and donated to the Bell
Canada Historical Collection in March 2009.
I am a Bell Canada Retiree who retired in 1990 with 33 years service
mostly with the Construction Department . I worked in both the Province of
Quebec and Ontario and also spent five and a half years as a Construction
Manager with Bell Canada International seconded to Saudi Telephone.
I had the Splicers Tool Cart stored in a barn for nearly 18 years and
decided in 2008 to restore it and Donated it to the Historical Collection.
It was completely taken apart , sandblasted , primer applied and then
powder coated in the Old Bell Telephone Green with red wheels. New
electrical wiring and new tires were installed along with a set of yellow
powder coated Manhole Guards. It was taken from Milton Ontario to the Bell
Historical Collection in Montreal.
Do hope you can use the photos.
trip through Bell Canada's history
Back in Time"
Here are just a few
interesting stories that you will find at the Bell Canada's web
site. Check out their site for all of the great stories they have to
offer. To view each story on the Bell Canada history page, click
your browser's "refresh" button. Here are three samples:
1923, the Company began to honor acts of "courage and
devotion," recognizing that employees are sometimes called upon
to make great sacrifices to fulfill their roles as public servants.
In 1964, Addie McCormick, a 64 year-old switchboard attendant at the
Beacon Arms Hotel in Ottawa, stayed at her post to warn guests when
a serious fire broke out. She perished in the fire. Once a chief
operator in Bell Canada, she was posthumously awarded the Royal
Canadian Humane Association's gold medal for her "heroic
devotion to duty."
Blake magneto telephone was the first standard telephone of the Bell
Telephone Company of Canada. It was made of three boxes: the top box
contained the magneto generator which the caller cranked to ring
central; the middle box contained the mouthpiece for the transmitter
- an improved, clearer transmitter invented by Francis Blake in
1878; and the lower box contained a wet battery which supplied the
necessary electrical current.
1899, the first of many public coin telephones in Montreal was installed
in Nicholl's Drug Store at the corner of Bleury and St. Catherines
Streets. Since those days, Bell Canada's pay telephone technology has come
far. In 1987, Bell's "universal" pay phone made its debut. It
was a set that would accept coins, calling cards and credit cards, an
improvement over the Cartophone which accepted only cards.
Furthermore, it cost half
as much to produce, since Bell was retrofitting their classic Centurion
payphones rather than building entirely new units. Other improvements were
numerous, such as an improved card reader, a volume control mounted on the
casing rather than the handset for more efficient adjustment, and four
buttons that could be individually programmed for 911, taxi service, car
rental or any other potential customer needs and services that the pay
phone's location might suggest.
Reverting Information as told by
Claude Sterling - ATCA member
I can remember in
1947 (I was 17 then and fascinated by anything about the telephone) visiting an
uncle in Ottawa. They had a 302 with an unusual dial the only letters on it were
M, J, R & W. Ottawa was using a 5 digit numbering plan and must have been a
mix of dial and manual service. Toronto at that time was the 2L+4D that I was
used to in the Seattle area. I have recently acquired two WE dials with only the
M, J, R & W on them, this must have been common throughout the Bell System
in areas where 5D provided sufficient numbers available. Prior to DDD, many
Pacific Telephone dial offices were 4D and in some small CDO's only 3D!
As to the "Busy
Back" tone, some of the later manual CO's in the Bell System were set up to
reduce the time that operator had to spend on a call. The keyshelf was equipped
4 large buttons labeled M, J, R & W. The operator only had to press the
appropriate button and retire from the call. If the line "tip tested"
busy, she then plugged her front cord into a "Busy Back" jack and go
on to the next call. In either case she had to monitor her cord lamps to see
that the calling party hung up in due time. I believe that for a one party line
(no party line letter) she only had to give one pull on a normal ringing key.
When a manual office
reached the size that a single position could not reach all of the lines, the
"B" board was introduced. In the usual configuration, the
"A" board would have a row of interposition trunks. If the number she
needed was on the "B" board and she would plug into a "B"
trunk. When the "B" operator answered (usually with a plug ended
trunk) the "A" operator would hear a "zip zip" tone and
would repeat the number to the "B" operator.
In one particular CO
(Walla Walla, Washington) one of the last manual offices to go down, Pacific
Telephone used an unusual numbering plan for 8 party suburban service. Since
this is a farming community, there was a higher percentage of suburban
subscribers. The 7XXX group was reserved for suburban service and the tip
parties all had even numbers and the ring parties odd number. This must have
been necessary with the party line ringing buttons, the keyshelf only have one
ringing key per cord pair that was used for bridged ringing. Thus, it was not
possible for the operator to use coded ringing such was "W4" or
A given suburban
line would look like this:
Tip Party Ring Party
The tariff called for 8 party
service, 10 codes were available in theory there would always be a vacant code
so a disconnect could be left vacant for the life of the directory. In practice,
in many cases, line build out fell short of growth forcast and lines were loaded
to 10 parties. It was necessary to use the "X" code for new connects
until the new directory was issued.
Example: If 7540R1 was
disconnected and reassigned to a new subscriber he would be assigned 7504R1X on
a temporary basis. There was some means of marking the lamp cap for disconnected
parties and the "X" would tell the operator to ignore the disconnect,
thus if you asked for 7504R1 she would tell you the number had been
disconnected, if you asked for 7504R1X she would go ahead and ring the number.
There were many unhappy
subscribers with codes R4 and R5 as the operator would ring so fast that it was
very difficult to distinguish the break in the coded ring.
At my family home we went from 20
party Farmer Line service to 8 party suburban manual service 1459W4 to dial
service in less than a year. Dial service used coded ringing as follows:
W or J 1 became 1 long ring
W or J2 became 2 short rings
W or J3 became 1 long and 1 short
W or J4 became 1 long and 2 shorts
W or J5 became 1 long, a short and a long.
There seemed to be no correlation
between your number and any other party on the line. Looking back on it now,
certain levels or hundreds must have been set up for certain ring codes. To call
another party on your line you simply dialed the number received a busy tone and
hung up. If you were a tip party calling another tip party you would hear the
appropriate ring, if you were calling a ring party, you would hear a series of
long rings with a very short interval between. When the ringing stopped you
would pick up the handset and say "hello".
Columbia Telephone Company, Limited
information was extracted from BC TEL's
history web page prior to it
The new history
page is now:
(thank you Sheila de Peuter for letting me know about the URL change)
Telephones were first installed
in B.C. in 1878 at two locations on Vancouver Island. William Wall, a mechanic
at Dunsmuir, Diggle and Company's Wellington Colliery, manufactured two
telephones and connected them to a line between the mine and the loading docks
at Departure Bay, a few miles away. At about the same time, Robert McMicking,
superintendent of British Columbia Telegraphs, leased two telephones from the
Bell Telephone Company of Canada and installed them on a line between his home
and an office in Victoria.
Telephones on the mainland soon
followed. A missionary working in a remote Indian fishing village near Prince
Rupert hung a line between the village store and the sawmill. And a contractor
working on the new Canadian Pacific Railway strung wire through the Fraser
Canyon so he could talk with his supervisors.
From these modest beginnings, a
new industry emerged. In 1880, the Victoria and Esquimalt Telephone company was
established - B.C.'s first. By the turn of the century, there were as many as 45
small phone companies in B.C.
Perhaps the most ambitious was
the Vernon and Nelson Telephone Company. With its incorporation on April 20,
1891, 15 years after the telephone was invented, a group of telephone
visionaries began the realization of a dream - to build a province-wide
telephone service. BC TEL traces its corporate history directly to that dream.
In 1904, after buying up a number
of the smaller telephone companies throughout the province, the Vernon and
Nelson Telephone Company changed its name to The British Columbia Telephone
Company, Limited. The name -- British Columbia Telephone Company -- was
established in 1923 under a federal charter the company had obtained in 1916.
This marked the start of BC TEL, which remained relatively unchanged until May
1, 1993, when BC TEL reorganized under a holding company, BC TELECOM Inc.
Concurrent with the creation of
the holding company, the telephone operating company changed its legal name from
British Columbia Telephone Company to the more familiar BC TEL.
is a contribution from Emily Purchase, Administrative Assistant to the Mayor's
Office of the City of Brantford (a.k.a. "The Telephone City"), Ontario, Canada. She sent a scan of the Bell Telephone Memorial and Bell Homestead souvenir
booklet which you can view by clicking
(PDF format). You can find out more by visiting
the web site. The home page
for the City of Brantford is
Emily also sent some photos from the memorial
and you can view the full-size images by clicking on the thumb-nail images
Read about the
monumental sculptor, Walter S. Allward, that created the Alexander Graham Bell
monument by clicking
Here is his description of his creation:
Description to Accompany
Sketch Model of Proposed Bell Telephone Memorial
n making this model I have tried to cover as much space as possible,
owing to the large area of the proposed site, and to create a design
which would be interesting and expressive in outline from any point
of view. The design has been purposely made as wide as possible so
as to express the idea of great space between the two allegorical
figures representing the speaker and the listener.
I have treated the subject in a simple, broad way in order that it might be
expressive and easily understood by the average observer.
To the left of the large panel it is intended that there shall be a large
portrait in relief of Bell, modeled from life. The head is only suggested in
the model as I did not have a satisfactory photograph.
The dominant notes I have tried to express are:
First, man discovering his power to transmit sound through space. This is
shown in the large sculptured panel, the three figures representing three
messengers, “Knowledge. Joy and Sorrow.”
Secondly, the two Heroic figures at either side represent Humanity, sending
and receiving messages. On the back of the design are four pilasters and at
the top of each might be placed emblems of the most important nations in the
world. Between these run the line of telephone and binding the whole is the
line of the earth's curvature, expressing the world-wide use of the
telephone. The figure of "man" could be draped should there be any objection
to the nude. Inscriptions would be placed on the monument according to the
wishes of your committee.
MATERIAL AND COST
Granite Work -The pedestal to be built of granite cut and erected in the best
possible manner, free from all defects in material, workmanship or
Sculpture- The two figures of "Humanity" at the extremes of the design (left
and right) also the relief of "Bell", and that of his invention to be cast in
The large panel in relief containing five figures to be carved in fine
The whole to cost twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000.00).
To view two different Canadian postal mail
envelopes honoring A.G. Bell and the telephone, click on the two links below:
Here is the CRTC listing of
Independent Telephone companies acquired by Bell in Canada since 1960 (including
date of acquisition). It is an MS Word document and you must have an MS Word
plug-in for your browser to view it. This link discovered by Dave Hunter.
If the above link is dead, an archive of the document is
mirrored on my server and can be viewed/downloaded by clicking
Pierre in Canada sent the following pictures of some
items he has from his days with Bell (Canada). The last picture is
a height finder. He states, "I never could figure how it works but it was
used by design plant engineer to get the height of a pole." Click on the images below
to see full-size:
Click on "The Bell Homestead"
logo above to visit that web site.
Thanks to Emily Purchase
(Administrative Assistant, Mayor's Office,
City of Brantford "The
Telephone City") for this link!
We Offer Personalized One-On-One
Call Us Today at (651) 787-DIAL (3425)
Click on the link below to view information
on Bell Canada's
former research and development unit.
- A Brief History
These be your Kings
Published by Northern Electric 1937
The following book was sent courtesy of Robert McKinnon
of British Columbia. This book was published by Northern Electric in
1937, and details the history of the English and British Monarchs from
1066 to 1937. This is a great historical resource, and is a welcome
addition to the Bell Canada historical site. Thank you Robert for
Click above to go