Telephone Answering Machine

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Description (Brief)
This Crown model CTA-4000 answering machine from the late 1960s used a non-standard cassette for recording messages. The telephone sat on top of the unit and was connected via a pickup and telephone cradle plug. A small microphone is mounted in a slot on the right side. The duration of message was 60 seconds. An advertisement from 1968 lists the retail price as $98.50 while one year it sold for $49.95.
Currently not on view
date made
ca 1968
Crown Radio Corporation
place made
location of prior holder
United States: Ohio, Kent
Physical Description
brown (case color)
brown (microphone color)
metal (case material)
plastic (microphone material)
case: 6.5 cm x 21 cm x 28 cm; 2 9/16 in x 8 1/4 in x 11 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
from Thomas S. Lough
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Work and Industry: Electricity
Magnetic Recording
Data Source
National Museum of American History


"I am reading 'The City' by Dean Koontz. It is a wonderous story of a child in a big city in the late sixties. The spirit of the city has appeared spoken to him. Mr. Koontz mentions a telephone answering machine. Well I was born in 1960 but hadn't heard of them until well past 1968. I was eager to look up facts of this. In from Cleveland, Ohio. I realize bigger cities most likely had increasingly modernized machines and tools before lesser ones. "

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