Electrical Review, August 29, 1891, page 4:


    A correspondent writes from Paris, under recent date, as follows: "I want to tell you about a machine they use here very much, but that I have not seen anything of in our country. They call it the theatrophone. It is virtually a phonograph that is placed in any hotel and connected with all the theatres. By dropping the familiar coin into the equally familiar slot, the thing is set in working order, and the conversation, music, etc., of whatever theatre it happens to be connected with at the time, is plainly heard by placing two receivers to the ears. They usually connect them with the opera, bouffés-Parisiens, etc., and with all the theatres that have music. When the curtain rises the machine receives its impression for thirty minutes, say, and is then switched off to another theatre. An indicator shows you what is going on at any time and you can choose what you wish. It is very ingenious; certainly more amusing than the weighing machines and pull-testers that so overcrowd our waiting-rooms everywhere."