Source: Ruth Brubaker, LAKETON--YESTERDAY AND TODAY FOR THE YEARS 1836-1976 (1976), p. 110-112.


As to just when Laketon first got the telephone is not known, but it is known the telephone was in town in 1884.

Just as to when the telephone company or office was put above the Ogden and Wertenberger Hardware is hard to say, but it was there some time in the front part of the upstairs. There was a curtain that divided it from the back room as that was where Mr. Wertenberger would keep his supply of caskets.

Before this system was moved from there, an operator from Urbana called the operator at Laketon, who at that time was Mrs. Pearl Dilling, and asked her if she was afraid to go to sleep. For the operators had to stay in the same room but they could go to bed. Mrs. Dilling said no that there was no one in them and so what was there to be afraid of.

The first system was run on dry and wet cell batteries. This office was closed on Sunday from twelve to six p.m., and on holidays.

In 1908 the office was moved to a main floor. This as in the brick building on Main Street about a half block south of where it was. It took two operators during the time of moving as they did not want to miss any calls.

Some of the operators were Lela Ogden, Pearl Dilling, Ida Miller, Verna Ulsh, who had wanted to be for sometime while it was still upstairs. But Miss Ulsh was unable to go up the steps, so she had to wait until it was on ground level. She worked there for a good number of years. Dorothy Egner was one of the last ones and she was transferred to North Manchester when Laketon office was closed.

In 1928 Edward Hamson was manager of the Laketon and Disko telephone company.

In 1936 Laketon was able to get the dial phones. Laketon people were able to just dial a Laketon number and did not have to get the operator to do it. If they wished to call North Manchester, they would dial "0" and give the number they wanted and the connection would be made. There was no charge for this service.

At this time the office was moved from the brick building to the house just north of it. The front part close to the street was used for the automatic system.

In 1956 a small block building was built to put the telephone system in and at this time Laketon was changed from three numbers to four. This was only in use until 1963 when Laketon was then put in with North Manchester. Laketon was given direct dial as was North Manchester.

Mr. and Mrs. Roy Hoover live in the brick building that was the office. Mr. and Mrs. Don Kistler have the house where the second office was. The little block building is owned by Mrs. Esta Baker.