THOMAS S. NEWLAND              

The Wichita Beacon, Thursday, Jan. 4, 1917

Died:  Jan. 4, 1917





Thomas S. Newland of

Andover, Kas.


At the Age of 75 Years He

Was Serving as “Hello”

at a Switchboard.



  Thomas S. Newland, probably the oldest telephone operator in the United States, died this morning at the age of 75 years after four days of pneumonia at his home in Andover.

  He had been the telephone operator for Andover and farmers of that vicinity for ten years.  He served until the moment when illness compelled him to give up his seat at the switchboard to a young woman from Benton and go to bed, too weak to remain longer on duty.  The switchboard was in his home.

  When death struck the veteran operator at 6:15 o’clock this morning, the young woman operator in his place notified the community over his switchboard in a general call.  Wichita received the next notice.

  Mr. Newland was a Civil War veteran serving in the 78th Illinois Infantry.  He had been a resident of Andover for thirty years and of Kansas for forty-six years.  He is survived by his wife and four children.  A son, Harry Newland, of Miama, Ariz. Was hurrying to his father’s bedside when informed of the death.  The two children are Clarkson Newland of Mountain Park, Ok.; Mrs. Anna Riley, of Newkirk, Ok.  Funeral arrangements await the arrival of the son.  The Wichita Undertaking Company is in charge.