Area Code Day

Area Code Day - Sunday, November 10, 2024

Items & Things

In the beginning of the world with telephones, things were easy. You didn’t even call a number, you just called your operator and asked them to hook you up with someone in your town. Need the Doctor, you could not only ask the operator to connect you with one but ask which one she’d suggest. Eventually, the phone system expanded beyond just local networks and started connecting towns, counties, states, and nations. The first step was putting in a number system so that each person could dial another directly, but then there weren’t enough numbers. Area Code Day celebrates the solution that has become a part of our everyday existence ever since.

History of Area Code Day

Area Codes first came into existence in the 1940’s in the laboratories of AT&T and Bell, slowly but surely this idea was expanded on and developed until it finally went into effect in 1947. It was called the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) and would solve the issue of not enough phone numbers for both the USA and Canada. It all started with numbering states and provinces with a single area code were assigned codes that had a 0 in the middle.

There’re some creative ideas that were implemented to help make dialing easier, including how the numbers were distributed. Live in an area that has a lot of people in it? They’ll be assigned area codes that have lower numbers at the beginning and end. Why? Well, in those days phone calls were made with rotary dialers, and it was determined that those in denser populated areas should be able to dial faster. How do you make rotary phones dial faster? By using numbers that were closer to zero so they had a shorter pull time.

Yeah… If you’ve never seen a rotary phone you probably have no idea what we’re talking about, but trust us, at the time? It worked.

How to celebrate Area Code Day

You can celebrate Area Code Day by taking the time to research this innovation and how it’s been implemented. The effects it’s had on our lives has been more significant than just the phone number. Politics and various other activities have been allocated up to them, both good and bad. Some gangs even identify themselves by the area code they live in rather than the town they live in, especially in bigger areas like major metropolises. So take a little time and read up on it, see what you can learn, and look at a map of the area codes just to broaden your mind like they broadened your neighborhood.

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