Category - Coin-operated talking machines,featured
The serial number of the Edison “Standard” mechanism contained in this rare machine suggests that it left the Edison factory about October 1900. This would coincide with the transition from the early style “Standard” mechanisms to the improved Model “A” mechanisms provided with a “New Style” cabinet. It may well be that Edison sold the remaining inventory of earlier mechanisms to the Manhattan Phonograph Company of New York City at the end of 1900, whereupon the latter company converted them to coin-slot use. In any event, the result was one of the most interesting coin operated Edison Phonographs, and one of the rare instances in which the finished machine was not a product of the Edison companies. Not much is known about the Manhattan Phonograph Company, but the few surviving machines are fascinating in design and operation. An early slug-detection device consists of a coin chute which ends mid-way across the width of the machine, and fitted with a horseshoe magnet. A copper penny, not affected by the magnet, will leave the end of the coin chute and sail a few inches through space before being caught by a brass cup. A steel washer or other magnetic slug will be deflected off its course by the magnet and fall onto the deck of the machine. This machine is further distinguished by its original double-sided porcelain marquee.