Mad Money

by Rosalieann Beasley January. 25, 2017 880 views

It is easy to understand that our great great great grandparents did not have cars or even electricity.  But it may be hard for young people realize that the things that they take for granted, were not available not too long ago to someone as young as their parents.  There were no cell phones.  If you watch an old Perry Mason TV show, the detective Paul Drake had to find a pay phone anytime he wanted to call Perry.  

When I went on a date, I always had what my mother called "mad money" in my pocket.  In those days it was a dime for a phone call.  Or if I wore penny loafers, I might have put dimes in there instead of pennies.  That way, if my date started drinking, or he behaved in a way that made me upset or fearful, I could go to a pay phone and call my dad to come and get me. 

St Paul Street, Balrimore

5:30 am - 1964 - Charles Street in Baltimore - there is a pay phone on the right just past the PARK sign - I can't crop the photo any smaller as this site won't let me use a smaller photo

ChinaTown LA 1965 - there is a pay phone in the center of the photo

It's hard to find a pay phone now.  I can't even find many of my photos which have pay phones in them.   Many pay phones have been removed because vandals smash them to get the money out.  The last one that I remember in the city was next to an old folks home.   And some of the ones that remain use credit cards.  

Credit Card pay phone - Antigua

Except in the areas where the Amish or Menonites live - they use pay phones to run their businesses.  Of course they don't drive cars or have electricty in their homes either.

Amish carriage

So for those youngsters who haven't seen a pay phone - here are some photos

London 2002 - one of the signature red phone boxes

Dry Tortugas 2005 - This phone is a satellite phone with a heavy fee for use (about $1.00 a minute)  The phone sometimes works and sometimes doesn't . So it is posted Out of Order so people won't be mad if it doesn't work. It is in a niche in Fort Jefferson

Just as sometimes your cell phone has no service - pay phones sometimes don't work either.

Cozumel - 2007 You will see pay phones at the cruise ship docks - the crew gets off the ship and calls home - they can't afford the ship rqtes


Santa Marta in the cathedral square - many current pay phones aren't in a booth.


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Ram Ya 2 years, 10 months ago

#1 Love this shot! The way you captured the long road without anyone in it! Brilliant :)

2 years, 10 months ago Edited
Rosalieann Beasley Replied to Ram Ya 2 years, 10 months ago

Thank you - It was 5:30 in the morning in 1963. We had just landed on a flight from California.

2 years, 10 months ago Edited
Barbara Fox 2 years, 10 months ago

What fun!
Love the backlighting on the girls' hair

2 years, 10 months ago Edited
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