Chinatown began its own telephone service in 1887. The new Chinese Telephone Exchange opened in the fall of 1901. Just around the corner from Grant at 743 Washington was the venerable Chinese Telephone Exchange. It was the only Chinese language telephone exchange outside of China itself.
A telephone exchange is a telecommunications system used in the public switched telephone network or in large enterprises. Shown is a 1924 PBX telephone switchboard on display at the Atlanta History Center in Atlanta, Georgia.