Los Angeles metropolitan area telephone exchanges in the late dial period



Unlike most cities, in Los Angeles the transition from their traditional dialing pattern (in Los Angeles, the first two letters of an exchange name followed by a four-digit number designating the individual line) to the standard United States pattern (two letters and five digits, the first of which was considered a part of the exchange) was stretched over a number of years. By 1951, some exchanges had been converted to the standard pattern. (It is uncertain when the conversion began; it is only known that it was no later than 1951.) However, for some years thereafter, Los Angeles constituted a mixed- pattern city, and both 2L-4N and 2L-5N numbers were the rule, depending on the exchange. Oddly, and unlike every other city about whose exchanges I have found information, in Los Angeles there were early dial period exchanges and late dial period exchanges with the same name, operating at the same time. In most cities, such as Pittsburgh, the change from the early to the late dial period took place all at once, so if the exchange used two letters and four figures and its name was continued into the late dial period, an office numeral was simply added to make a late dial period exchange. In the small number of cities such as Atlanta where the changeover was spread over a significant period of time, the exchange names were totally changed. But in Los Angeles, for example, both RIchmond xxxx and RIchmond 7-xxxx numbers coexisted at the same time.

The tables that this page leads to give the exchanges in use in Los Angeles after the time when the format of telephone numbers changed from two letters and four digits (two-letter exchange names) to two letters and five digits (two- letter-one-digit exchange names). For the exchanges prior to this period, please see the section of this website devoted to early Los Angeles metropolitan dial exchanges.

This section is organized in the same way as is each geographical section of this site: by exchange. There are three tables, which can be described as alphabetical, numeric, and alphabetical/numeric:

Most of the data in these tables come from one 1951 directory, and the tables are thus necessarily incomplete because the directory did not distinguish between exchanges with office numerals and those without, and no example could be found of an actual listing that would enable me to determine which was the case for these particular exchanges. Those exchanges might, therefore, have properly belonged in this listing (and the other "late dial period") listing, in the "early dial period" listing, or even in both (as is the case for the "transitional exchanges" which are listed in this table). These exchanges are listed in a separate table elsewhere.



Alphabetic table of exchange names
Numeric table of exchange names
Alphabetic/Numeric table of exchange names



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Last modified September 8, 2015.




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