Publication information

American Telephone Journal
Source type: journal
Document type: article
Document title: “The Telephone at the White House—The President’s Private Branch Exchange”
Author(s): Bolce, Harold
Date of publication: 14 March 1903
Volume number: 7
Issue number: 11
Pagination: 161-62 (excerpt below includes only page 162)

Bolce, Harold. “The Telephone at the White House—The President’s Private Branch Exchange.” American Telephone Journal 14 Mar. 1903 v7n11: pp. 161-62.
William McKinley; William McKinley (last public address); White House; McKinley assassination (use of telephone).
Named persons
Benjamin F. Barnes; George B. Cortelyou; William McKinley; Benjamin F. Montgomery.

The Telephone at the White House—The President’s Private Branch Exchange

     The night before President McKinley left Canton, Ohio, for the fatal trip to Buffalo, he called up the White House by long distance telephone and asked for definite data in regard to the service the telephone had rendered during the Spanish War. The facts were furnished him by telephone, and he embodied them in his famous speech at Buffalo.
     Three minutes from the moment President McKinley was struck down at Buffalo arrangements were being rushed to establish an exclusive long distance telephone circuit between Secretary Cortelyou at the President’s side and Assistant Secretary Benjamin Barnes and Colonel Montgomery at the White House. In less than fifteen minutes from the moment the assassin shot the President this long distance telephone was in use. It was over this wire that the first official details of the crime were received at the White House, and without interruption, day or night, this wire continued to convey telephone tidings of the stricken ruler, communications between Cabinet officers and general instructions relating to national affairs from September 6, 1901, to the moment the funeral cortege started to Washington.