Oh. My. Goodness.
Once again, I've hit the jackpot. And once again, the "jackpot" came courtesy of my friend and Ephemeraologist Extraordinaire Robin, who makes me look like a Johnny-come-lately in terms of the amount of stuff I collect.
I mentioned it in yesterday's post - I got not one but TWO huge boxes full of stuff from Robin on Saturday. She knows exactly the kind of stuff I like, too - old labels, vintage receipt books, funky foreign items like Danish magazines and Portugese pamphlets, vintage report cards - the list goes on (and on and on). I could (and will!) do whole posts on the cool stuff that was included in this monstrous pile of wonderfulness. Is she insanely generous, or WHAT?!?! :D
One of the first things that I saw that made my heart skip a beat and launched me into the "I'm on crack" adrenaline rush of searching through vintage ephemera was this.
I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this. Much like other things I've spoken of (like some dinky DOT envelope), I'm going to assume that most folks would just look at this and say, "Oh, cool" or just, "Oh." Not me. I LOVE this roll more than I should.
This is the first time I've ever seen anything like this. It's made by Western Union and judging by the angular font I'm going to say it's from the Seventies.
But what IS it, you ask? Well, it's Telex tape. I knew of telex before, but I never really knew what it was. I'd seen companies that offered a Telex number in their ads, and usually these ads were in fancy-schmancy or foreign magazines (Rolex has a telex number, for example). When I was in Europe in 1988 I saw Telex numbers all the time. "Telex" stands for "telephone exchange" (tel-ex). It's a way of connecting international printers, like an early fax. According to the Wikipedia page, much like telegrams, they use abbreviated text - sort of a primitive text message. All of the history is there, if you'd like to read more about it - it's pretty long and involved. :D
This is one of those items where I grabbed first and asked questions later. I have NO idea what I'm going to use this for, and eventually I will share it with my fellow paper lovers. When I get stuff this good I HAVE to share it - it's part of the Ephemeraologists' Code. So local folks, look for it in our white elephant swaps. Non-locals, look for it in ephemera giveaways in the future. There's more than enough to go around, and I think I would make Robin proud. :D