Emma M. Nutt was the first female telephone operator starting her 33 year career in 1878 in Boston, Mass. Yes, that was 1878! It’s amazing how far the use of telephones have come. In fact, finding a telephone operator anymore is nearly impossible, though they do still exist. When asked about the honor she earned as the first female operator her response was simple… “I’m glad my fist name wasn’t Imma”. (Which would obviously make her, Imma Nutt)
How to celebrate – Read more about Emma M. Nutt. Visit a telephone museum. See if you can find an operator. (There may be charges if you do)
Remember Lily Tomlin’s telephone lady on Saturday Night Live? Well, she was probably based on the first ever female telephone operator, Emma M. Nutt. Her work began on September 1st, 1878 and she continued to operate (Pun intended) for the next 33 years. I am sure it was a wonder when she first started but after 33 years I am pretty sure she was glad to be rid of all those wires and not having to be pleasant constantly to all the rude people she had to speak to. I wonder, however, how many secret phone calls she had the opportunity to listen into! Not that she ever did.
How to celebrate – Visit a telephone museum. Call an operator just for fun. Watch Lily Tomlin’s telephone character on youtube.