BETHEL – “Don’t Yank the Crank” was the battle cry of an impassioned campaign in 1982 to save the last magneto telephone system in the country from replacement by dial tone.

The documentary film “Bryant Pond – The Last Magneto Telephone” tells the story of Bryant Pond and small-town America as it struggled with new technology, as told by the people who worked there.

On Saturday, April 30, the Mahoosuc Arts Council will present a showing of the 30-minute documentary as well as a discussion with the film’s maker, Larry Young of Best Shot Productions. The program begins at 7 p.m. in the McLaughlin Science Center on the Gould Academy campus.

Shot in a minimalist style, “Bryant Pond” weaves together historical photos, film, video and recollections.

The company started as the Woodstock Telephone Co. in 1883. Owners Elden and Barbara Hathaway operated it from 1951 until 1983 as the Bryant Pond Telephone Co.

This mom and pop company represented the last of the hand-cranked switchboards in North America. The film not only tells of the Hathaways’ struggles but also provides a glimpse of day-to-day life in small-town rural America during part of the 20th century.

Tickets are $6 for adults, $4 for students. Reservations are highly recommended, as seating is limited.

For tickets, call (207) 824-3575.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.