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Subject: Construction of the base

Bill Ladd
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Date Posted: 10:01:06 03/13/15 Fri
In reply to: John 's message, "Construction of the base" on 16:54:41 06/13/13 Thu

When Sampson Naval base was being built and the telephone system was being installed I recall my father and many of his coworkers were at the base doing the installation, Running lines, setting poles and installing telephones wherever they were needed. It was a very big project! I can't recall what year it was as I was a very small boy. Dad and his coworkers were from Geneva telephone company. I was only about 7 years old when Pearl Harbor was bombed. Dad told about installing the PBX board, I think that was the post exchange telephone system the operators used to transfer calls around the base and also outside to public lines. Dad was the main trouble shooter in the Geneva office. He worked nights alone at the office. The telephone system was all mechanical at that time. Someone had to be there 24/7 to make sure that all switches were in operating condition. Dad said that ALL CALLS to the western part of the New York went through the Geneva Office. I think he said it was the only TRUNK line cable between eastern and western New York at that time (1930's and 1940's)

From our house, about two miles west of Seneca Lake, we could see the lights of Sampson on a clear night. I recall all of the sailors on weekend pass visiting the "Canteen" on Pultney street.

Bill Ladd

869 Broughton Road
Westfield, Pennsylvania

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