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The candlestick (or desk, upright or stick) telephone was commonly in operation throughout the early 20th Century, right up to the 1950s, though by then it had been superseded by more modern styles. Featuring a mouthpiece (carbon microphone transmitter) integral to the stand and a linked earpiece (receiver) to be lifted to the ear from a cradle attached to the stand; various styles existed. At first, they needed to be installed with a separate ringer box and connection to the network. When automated telephone exchanges were introduced, a rotary dial was added. However, during the 1920s and 1930s, technology moved on – with telephones having a handset which incorporated both the transmitter and receiver.

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