New York Telephone Company


SKU: 1052rd
Product Details

Beautifully engraved antique bond certificate from the New York Telephone Company dating back to the 1950's and 1960's. This document, which carries the printed signatures of the company Vice President and Assistant Secretary, was printed by the American Bank Note Company, and measures approximately 10 1/4" (w) by 15" (h).

The certificate's primary vignette features the New York Telephone headquarters building flanked by Niagara Falls and a lighthouse. Allegorical figures frame the scene. There are also a total of eight small vignettes in the border, including a line worker, operator, a man using a phone at a horse race and an old rotary phone.


You will receive the exact certificate pictured.

Please note the red certificate has an uneven right side margin resulting from coupon removal.

    Historical Context

    The Telephone Company of New York was formed under franchise in 1876. The principals were Charles A. Cheever and Hilborne Roosevelt. Its purpose was to rent telephone instruments to users, who were expected to provide wires to connect them, for example from factory to office. Such connections already existed for private telegraphs, and the new invention promised to save the cost of hiring a private telegraph operator. Manufacturers of steel wire for the Brooklyn Bridge then under construction were especially prominent among the customers under this scheme, using their own product.

    Western Union subsidiaries, including Atlantic and Pacific Telegraph, Gold and Stock Telegraph, and American Speaking Telephone, based their New York and San Francisco operations on the telephone exchange principle and thus were larger and more advanced than the local Bell operations. Under the November 1879 settlement of the Elisha Gray patent infringement lawsuit, Western Union handed over its telephone operations to National Bell Telephone, which then renamed itself American Bell Telephone. The merged local company was called the Metropolitan Telephone and Telegraph Company.

    In 1896 the operations of Metropolitan Telephone and Telegraph Company and the Westchester Telephone Company (which served northern suburban areas, including parts of then-Westchester County which subsequently were incorporated into New York City as the Borough of The Bronx) were consolidated under the name of the New York Telephone Company.

    The New York and New Jersey Telephone Company, a Bell licensee serving Long Island and Staten Island, was broken up and its New York properties merged with the New York company as the City and Suburban Telephone Company in 1897. American Telephone and Telegraph (AT&T) eventually acquired a controlling interest and restored the New York Telephone name.

    New York Telephone was an AT&T subsidiary until the AT&T breakup effective January 1, 1984. At that time, New York Telephone, along with the New England Telephone & Telegraph Company, became part of a Regional Bell operating company named NYNEX. The company was referred to as "New York Telephone, a NYNEX Company" before being called simply "NYNEX" starting on January 1, 1994. On August 15, 1997, NYNEX was acquired by Bell Atlantic, who kept the Bell Atlantic name. On June 30, 2000, Bell Atlantic acquired GTE to form the current Verizon Communications.