A Scarce AC 440/420 Crank Desk Phone by L.M Ericsson & Co Stockholm c.1917



Origin: Swedish
Period: Early 20thC
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1917
Height: 12”
Width: 7.5”
Depth: 5”

The wonderfully original and attractive hand crank desk or table phone by L.M Ericsson & Co Stockholm, the ebonised wooden case with gilt transfer chinoiserie type detailing and central logo with skeletal clock, the whole with its original cord, hand crank wind mechanism and handset sitting on bun feet and surviving from the first quarter of twentieth century Sweden.

The condition of the phone is simply as found,  though it appears complete and there is no damage to report other than general wear as photographed.

Lars Magnus Ericsson started in 1876 and the first telephones manufactured by Ericsson were presented in 1878. The company was established as a workshop to repair telegraph instruments and undertake small mechanical engineering jobs.  Once the telephone arrived in Sweden, Ericsson was commissioned to repair and install the new invention. He quickly realised the possibilities of the phone and created his own versions of the device.

The ebonising and chinoiserie detailing to the case is very much of the second decade of the twentieth century when this style was back in vogue.

Whether admired purely as a decorative table-top element or intending to restore and use today this is a beautiful and scarce piece of early telecoms.