Starting when vintage portable radios were finally small enough to be carried in the 1950s, through when they got almost too big to carry in the ’80s, here’s a little sound history of AM & FM radios from the days of transistors onward.
50s phones were more than just a means of communication — they were pretty household decorations!
Step back in time to 1980s grocery stores! From barcode scanners to in-house brands, they paved the way for major retail transformation. See inside these 80s supermarkets and what foods they might be selling.
Flash back a few decades to see the Kodak Instamatic camera – which defined amateur photography for a generation & inspired the digital photography of another!
The world of photography experienced a fascinating phenomenon in the late 20th century — the rise of disposable cameras.
Reel-to-reel tape recorders hit the commercial market in the 1940s — and their evolution was boosted by the financial support of none other than Bing Crosby, who saw great potential in the technology.
What were really old cars like around 1900? Here, take a look back at some of the earliest automobiles that were on the market at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th.
Looking back over the history of vintage camcorders showcases the incredible advancements in technology we have experienced over the years.
We’ve collected some popular vintage home movie cameras that paved the way for video and camcorder technology — and, eventually, the digital video revolution as we experience it today.
The 50s and 60s were the glory days for old drive-in movie theaters, when there were about 4000 such venues spread across the country. Take a look back!
Felix the Cat was a black and white cartoon character who first appeared on movie screens way back in 1919. Created by Pat Sullivan and
Let’s take a dive into the nostalgic maze of the original Pac-Man game – plus see point values and scoring, plus home and arcade version of the OG and his family, including Ms and Baby Pac Man!
First flying in the 1960s, the famous Boeing 747 airplane was not only bigger and more powerful than any other plane, but was a major technological marvel. See the jets inside and out, and how they looked during construction!
Check out some old how-to info and classic ads from the early days of 1970s microwave ovens, with tips on how to use what is now the most basic of kitchen appliances!
This classic advice from the 1970s helped consumers choose and take care of audio cassette tapes.
In the world of modern technology, it’s easy to take the humble typewriter completely for granted. But have you ever wondered who invented the typewriter – and how it introduced a new role for women in the workforce?
Intellivision gaming systems from the 80s were supposed to be more realistic than anything else available at the time. You may be surprised to see (or remember) how simplistic and pixelated the games really were!
Living rooms changed entirely when these vintage console stereos came on the market – they were technology and furniture all in one!
These vintage touch-tone phones – featuring push buttons, speed and musical tones – represented a totally new signaling system, and opened the way to increased versatility in communications.
Back in the 1920s, footwear manufacturers and merchants decided that X-ray shoe fittings could bring in lots of customers – people who would be thrilled to let a recent scientific advance help them find the perfect shoe. There was just a little problem…
Anyone who lived through the great videotape format war of the late 1970s to early 1980s will never forget the big question: VHS or Beta? Here’s the Betamax side – the player that ultimately lost.
People were used to big records, but then the music industry wanted everyone to adopt a new format and a new size, and came out with 45 RPM record players and 7″ vinyl records with a big hole in the middle.
Imagine getting paid to think up the wildest retro-futuristic space-age inventions. Back in the 50s and 60s, that’s what commercial artist Arthur Radebaugh got to do.
Here’s some eye-opening insight into the invention of contact lenses! The contacts were made of glass, and although they worked much like they do today, they were thick, uncomfortable, and even a little dangerous.
The old VTech PreComputer 1000 from the 80s was a small 3-in-1 computer ‘teacher’ that helped kids learn touch typing and basic computer programming – plus had a 3500-word dictionary, and knew more than 1000 facts
Disneyland’s old Carousel of Progress from the ’60s was a huge model of a city of soaring spires. Automated highways. Open green spaces. Nuclear power. Take a look back!
The Picturephone, an electronic moving picture device that debuted in the late 60s, let you video chat long before the internet, and way before Zoom, Google Meet, Facetime et al.
Want to know how to make an old rotary phone work? Here’s your handy guide, straight from the 50s!
These vintage Princess phones were enormously popular in the sixties, with their compact style and backlit dial. Here’s a look back!
The old Apple QuickTake digital camera was in stores from 1994 to 1997. There were three models – the 100, 150 and 200 – and offered a 640×480 image resolution.
Olc cash register history goes back to the Victorian era, and were used to both streamline accounting, and to keep cashiers from stealing money. Find out more here!
It was on that memorable day in telephone history – June 2, 1875 – when Bell and Watson were testing a number of transmitters, connected by a single wire to a corresponding set of vibrating reed receivers, that the first sounds were transmitted electrically.
If you remember the old ‘Reach out – reach out and touch someone’ long distance ad jingle, you probably just sang those words in your head! Look back at some of these vintage TV commercials, and find out how the ditty came together here!
With better quality than fixed-lens Instamatic-style cameras, but far less complicated than standard SLR cameras, these vintage point-and-shoot 35mm cameras were just what people were looking for in the ’80s.
If you lived through the seventies and eighties, you can probably immediately remember the sound that these vintage dot matrix printers used to make. See and hear them again here!
Old-fashioned dentistry in the early 1900s had come a long way since the Wild West days, but, compared to what we have available in the 21st century, it might as well have been the Dark Ages. Take a look!
ternational long-distance phone calls for ‘only’ $12 for the first three minutes? And this old ad said that price was low. See more about what it took to dial abroad back in the sixties here!
To help you remember the heyday of the Xerox, check out some vintage copy machines here – and be grateful that email and scanners have made running a business nowadays so much simpler.
Years ago, old-fashioned clock radios like these were on pretty much every bedside table around America, both lulling us to sleep with music and radio shows, and getting us up for work in the morning.
In the 1960s, Douglas was one of the biggest airplane manufacturers in America. Their DC-9, which first flew in 1965, was built to service both large and small airports, setting it apart from other planes of the era.
Who invented television? Unfortunately for anyone looking for a quick answer, the first TV sets weren’t made by one single person — there were several inventors who were incredibly important to its creation and evolution. Here’s a look!
When you look back at how people talked about and used computers in the 1960s, it’s easy to get a feel for how exciting the technological advances were at the time. It was a whole new wild frontier.
The AMSTRAD Word Processor was compact… for the time! One box held the whole shebang – the monitor, keyboard and printer, plus word processing software.
The Matthew Broderick movie ‘War Games’ was more than just a hit at the box office – it also showed such a realistic WW3 scenario that it led to the creation of a 1986 anti-hacking law.
The demand for ’60s computer programmers was huge as business, industry, science, education and government all raced to reap the benefits of new technology. Here’s a look!
Here’s the original press release that a small company called Apple released back in 1984, announcing the launch of their new Macintosh personal computer – the first mass-market PC with both a graphical user interface and a mouse.
In the ’70s, there were millions of people using Vintage CB radios – having a world of conversations and learning about the important reasons to keep citizens’ band radio active.
If you could go back in time, these are the vintage ’80s home stereo systems – turntables, cassette decks, stereos, TVs and VCRs – you probably would have seen. But if you go back, don’t spoil the surprise! We thought we were cool.
First entering service with Eastern Air Lines in 1959, the Lockheed L-188 Electra was a leap forward in airline technology when it appeared. But the planes had a fatal flaw.
When the old Victrola record players were first introduced, those turntables were some cutting-edge tech. Here’s a look at the history of the famous Victor Talking Machines!
These vintage 980s personal computers weren’t just expensive, but some had hard drives so small that just one of these old PC ad images would have maxed them out.
The 1970s personal computer revolution began as those ingenious devices that put men on the moon, revolutionized science, and perplexed millions were finding their way into the home.
The dance music of the Edison Phonograph is irresistible. It offers the most fascinating waltzes and spirited two-steps of the world’s, great composers as well as the popular dance music of the hour.
Here’s how to choose a turntable that will make your vintage vinyl records come alive, based on all the retro tips on what really made a difference back in the day.
What was vintage ’80s tech like? The Good Guys were a big consumer electronics specialty retailer selling brand-name audio and video gear. See the hottest retro TVs, stereos and more from 1987!
When these vintage Zenith ‘Space Command’ TV remote controls first came out, they were revolutionary tech – and everyone wanted one.
Far out! Check out these vintage portable radios – like the Panasonic Toot-A-Loop and others from the seventies that came in crazy shapes and colors.
These retro cash registers were big news because they showed the prices, item types, total purchased, tax (if any), money or check given checker, and exact change due.
Lennie’s Story: How Hub Prodigy, Bernstein, became “Nation’s No. 1 Musician.” What kind of man, husband and father is Boston’s musical genius, Leonard Bernstein? When
When color TV was first invented, people wondered if you could convert a black & white TV to color, and which shows would appear in color – and when. Here are some of the answers they were given.
Known as the speaking clock or POPCORN, calling the phone company for the time was a handy service helped people reset clocks years ago.
Even back when telephones had rotary dials, advances were made in these old office telephone systems that worked like mini-switchboards. See some here!
Imagine being able to call someone when you *weren’t at home*! It was a big deal back in the day. See the history of vintage payphones & phonebooths here!
If you grew up in the age of film, you will know the excitement that came from vintage instant cameras, like these ones from Polaroid and Kodak.
The classic Nintendo Entertainment System came with a robot, a light-sensing video gun, ‘true-to-life’ graphics and a library of games. Here’s a look!
George Eastman: The man behind Kodak (1854-1932) George Eastman, founder of Eastman Kodak, and often called “the father of photography” was many things — a
Back in the late ’80s we were happy for some of the first laptop computers, despite being big and heavy with tiny hard drives and huge price tags.
It’s not just today’s kids – the metric system has actually been ignored by people for more than two hundred years. But why isn’t it catching on, and what has been done to promote it? Here’s a look back.
Find out how X-rays were discovered, see the earliest X-rays, learn where the name came from, and meet Wilhelm Röntgen – the man behind the innovation.
Here’s a classic timesaving, money-saving dictating machine – the vintage Dictaphone Time-Master – plus other old dictation devices.
They weren’t cheap, but these vintage Kodak home movie cameras were really popular, and helped people save moving-picture memories on fiolm.
Vintage 1980s cordless phones were the essential step between wired pushbutton phones and today’s modern cell phones. Here’s a look back at the top telephone tech from the 80s!
What did the future look like from the ’60s? See some modernist-style retro futuristic home concepts that captured the midcentury era’s sleek style and space-age optimism.
Back in the ’80s, these now-vintage baby nursery monitors were new – easy-to-use one-way intercoms that let parents hear what their baby was up to in another room.
United Airlines flights in the ’50s offered a whole different kind of experience compared to now. Here, see what the travel industry hoped to provide to passengers!
In the ’50s, they wanted to know what secretary wouldn’t prefer a job that included one of these vintage IBM electric typewriters? Compared to manuals, they were so easy to use.
The Aroma Disc was a little machine from the ’80s you could use to play different fragrance ‘records’ to make your place smell like flowers or buttered popcorn… or dead fish.
Walkmans and other portable cassette tape players – ‘personal stereos’ – were hugely popular in the ’70s and ’80s, and packed more sociological punch than a load of hula hoops.
Despite his military expertise, President Eisenhower didn’t know how to dial a phone. Even after being given the 50 millionth telephone, Ike was apparently still befuddled by the new tech.
In the ’70s, pro golfer Jack Nicklaus and his wife helped advertise the new microwave ovens made by Magic Chef. Here’s a look.
In the olden days, you needed a telephone operator to connect your call manually through a switchboard. Her job wasn’t as easy as you might think.
Vintage flashcubes were jewel-like cubes that let you take pictures in low light, and had 4 flashes each. See how they worked!
Fax it! That phrase became as much of a cliche in the ’80s as ‘We’ll do lunch.’ Look at how vintage fax machines quickly outgrew fad status.
Once part of everyday life, now only people of a certain age will remember this stuff. Here are 25 things most people under 25 have never seen in real life!
In the early ’80s, arcade video games like Pac-Man, Asteroids, Space Invaders and Donkey Kong started to make millions of dollars – one quarter at a time.
Never having to come up from underground? Cars routinely going 130 MPH? Completely automated cleaning? Solar power dominant? See these and many more predictions from 1906!
The car of the future will be weather-proof, and that the sides, front, rear, and roof will probably be made of glass. The entire control of the machine will be simplified, and perhaps located in a set of push buttons.
Range: Anywhere on Earth — and your Air Force has it! The Consolidated B-36 can carry a 10,000 pound atomic bomb to a target 5,000 miles away, drop it, then return to base.
Maxell was long one of the leaders in the cassette tape world, and produced one of the most iconic ad campaigns of the era, featuring the man fondly (now) known as ‘blown away guy.’
The flight of the Space Shuttle Columbia marked the first time a vehicle would be flown into space, returned — and refurbished and used again.
Back in the twenties, who was buying the most stuff? The people who already had fancy telephones in their homes.
When video games first hit the market in the ’70s, manufacturers couldn’t keep up with demand for the new technological novelties. Here’s a look back!
In 1915, an engineer in Arlington, Virginia, was heard in Paris and Hawaii. This was the first trans-continental message ever sent by wireless telephone tech.
Microsoft’s RAMCard with RAMDrive… …takes the whir, click and wait out of the IBM PC. Solid state disk. When you add the Microsoft RAMCard to
1980s video games were a game changer — literally.
When these old VCRs first came out, they seemed like something magical — something of which dreams were made. As people who had long been locked
Old Crosley TV sets with 17″ screens (1950) Crosley Family gives you full-room vision… with the new wide-angle Family Theatre Screen. 5 TV cabinet models:
Enchanted evening by Zenith. (1950-1951) The setting: You… your guests, 1951 Black Magic TV with reflection-proof screen. Supreme moment! When Zenith Black Magic Television comes