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Ground Control to Major Tom?

July 14, 2023
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Spacecraft Telephone
Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum. Transferred from NASA Kennedy Space Center.

This spacecraft-inspired phone booth came from the visitor center at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The Bird-Adams Co. of Doraville, Georgia, manufactured it in the late 1960s. Bird-Adams made novelty phone booths for children's hospitals, amusement parks, zoos and shopping centers. Although this booth was called the "Gemini Model BA-20," it more closely resembles a Mercury spacecraft.

The coin-operated phone inside, like the pay phone that would have been mounted in the booth originally, has separate slots for quarters, nickels and dimes.

This phone booth is on display at the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia.