In April 1876, Lars Magnus Ericsson founded an electrical engineering workshop, L.M. Ericsson & Co. Thus the foundations were laid for what was to become one of the world's leading manufacturers of advanced telephone equipment, namely Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson.
In the same year Alexander Bell in America took out a patent on his invention, the telephone. By the following year American made telephones began to be sold in Sweden.
Initially L.M. Ericsson & Co. devoted itself to repairing telegraph equipment. Lars Magnus, however, soon realised that there was a need to improve the telephones that were then available and therefore began manufacturing models of his own design. After some experimentation, he managed to produce practical telephones and within a year in November 1878, the first two examples left the workshop.
1892 - Magneto set "Eiffel-Tower" with handset (see picture below) -
This is one of the real classics of telephony: popularly known as the "Eiffel-Tower" or "Skeleton" phone. It was manufactured in Stockholm by L. M. Ericsson in the period 1892 - 1929.
This model has been used almost all over the world and nearly one million were made. Its big popularity resulted in the fact that there were a number of factories producing imitations. The "Eiffel-Tower" has been used by almost all telephone companies.
Is the beautiful design of the set the reason why it is such a very popular collector's item today?
Some of my Ericsson replicas
My LME Swing Arm (AC100) replica - this phone has been made up using original parts for the base, receiver and transmitter and copied parts used for the swinging arm.
And shown below left is a copy of the LME Spider; A Common Battery (CB) telephone for very short lines.
Below right is my replica LME Biscuit Barrel (AC210) finally completed.
.............. and after some years (pestering the owner) and an increase in my offer price, I was finally able to buy my genuine Biscuit Barrel (AC210). It was originally installed in the offices at the W.D. & H.O. Wills tobacco factory in Melbourne and replaced when the office systems were uprgaded in the early 1900's. The following pictures show it's excellent condition before a very cosmetic clean up; naturally, the completely original artwork has been retained.
and after "restoration"
[ 1897 Ericsson 385 Partner telephone - Norwegian Deluxe Telephone Set c1890]
A most rare telephone in the Ericsson style but this one manufactured in Norway in the 1880's. Eventually added to this collection in 2015.
Bob Estreich (dec'd) wrote a paper on the Kristiana Elektrisk Bureau of Norway and their ties to the Ericsson and Bell companies for some of their component parts.
Below Left - Ericsson Automatic table handset from the Vienna factory.
Right - a beautiful mottled brown bakelite handset from the Ericsson factory in Italy.
This Ericsson 1st generation Bakelite telephone was first manufactured in 1932. The UK and subsequently Australian 300 types were based very much on this design. The pictures below show the 2nd generation of LME Bakelite telephone, with both White and a number of slightly different variations of the Black; a few other colour options were available, but none as striking as the Mottled Brown.
Two different versions of the LME Single Cell - actually they were fitted with two narrow cells, initially with glass enclosures. see the centre diagram below the photos.
From early LME catalogue information, left is Model 355 (courtesy Bobs Telephone File), on the right is the AB160 from the Ericsson catalogue 6th edition, c1911.
The picture below right shows the difference in size between the Single Cell and the more common Commonwealth Ericsson wall phone.
An Ericsson style wall phone from "the Telephone Factory, Estonia"
Below - My latest switchboard. (Nov 2007) finally arrived from Caerphilly in the UK
Glass enclosed batteries underneath - Rear view open - Side view shows the Royal Stockholm crest