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A Charge Plate
Old 01-26-2014, 11:04 PM   #1
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A Charge Plate

So, I watched this old episode of "Mr Ed" (a horse is a horse, of course, of course) and in the episode, Wilbur's neighbor, Rodger refers to a "charge plate" and in one scene, Rodger's wife has to hand over the "charge plate" to Rodger.

This is the first time I heard of such a thing as a "charge plate", but reasoned, they were precursors to the plastic credit cards.

I like watching old shows to see how things were back then

link to a sample charge plate...

Industrial Trust Charge Plate 1950s (name blurred) | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
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Old 01-26-2014, 11:29 PM   #2
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I recall charge plates which were part metal which was embossed, and part cardboard with the logo in the 1950s. Of course then the stores also had a pneumatic tube system, where the slip was sent to the credit office and approved, and then your copy returned. Also back then you had 12 drawer cash registers one for each clerk in a department.
So since back then computers were still humans you had to send the transaction to the "computer" just like today except it was a human computer.
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Old 01-26-2014, 11:32 PM   #3
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On I Love Lucy she calls it a "Charge-a-plate" I remember my parents using that term.

Did you see Leno's interview on 60 Minutes? He was talking about getting older and no longer being hip enough to keep up with all the pop culture trends and he said:

I think after a while, you know, I'm not gonna be that up on the latest Justin Bieber record when you're 64
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Old 01-26-2014, 11:41 PM   #4
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I did a bit of googling and found out that chargea plate was a trademark of Farrington Manufacturing company and is described early in this wikipedia article:
Credit card - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia these were used from the 1930s to the 1950s.
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Old 01-27-2014, 12:20 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by razztazz View Post
On I Love Lucy she calls it a "Charge-a-plate" I remember my parents using that term.

Did you see Leno's interview on 60 Minutes? He was talking about getting older and no longer being hip enough to keep up with all the pop culture trends and he said:

I think after a while, you know, I'm not gonna be that up on the latest Justin Bieber record when you're 64
I did watch the Leno interview. He's gonna sort of pass the baton to Jimmy Fallon tomorrow as they'll both appear together in an interview on "The Today Show". Can't believe he's 63.

How time goes by. Somewhere I got a vhs tape of his first "Tonight Show" when he took over for Johnny.
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Old 01-27-2014, 12:30 AM   #6
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How time goes by. Somewhere I got a vhs tape of his first "Tonight Show" when he took over for Johnny.
I have a VHS with Carson's final show followed by Leno's first. I was in Europe at the time and had my brother tape them for me as some sort of culturally significant event. I might rummage through all that crap in the back room tomorrow and see if I can find it.
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:50 AM   #7
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....I remember my parents using that term.
Same here, they had one from Montgomery Ward. They got into a bit of debt with it and it took years for them to dig out. Sort of a celebration when it was paid off when I was in HS.

That was when I developed an aversion to cc debt.
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:28 PM   #8
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I remember hearing charge-a-plate in the lyrics to Harvey and Sheila by Allan Sherman.
Allan Sherman:Harvey And Sheila Lyrics - Lyric Wiki - song lyrics, music lyrics

One of the local stations is currently running Highway Patrol, with Broderick Crawford -- from the 1950's. Interesting to see the old cars, and what Southern California looked like at the time -- dry and dusty. Trivia about Crawford: he drank heavily when working. The crew had to shoot scenes with dialog in the morning because by afternoon Crawford usually was not in condition for dialog. He had a couple of DUI's that caused his own driver's license to be suspended, so in a lot of episodes he is not seen driving on public roads, and you can see that in the shows, with many on long driveways, ranches, and in orchards . . . and he was the Chief of the Highway Patrol! 10-4. One line you can count on hearing in every episode is "Operator, get me the Highway Patrol." Crawford spoke very rapidly, like some radio professionals do. It is not uncommon for him to just throw out a long string of digits in his dialog all without taking a breath. Something like: "2150 to headquarters: The 459 suspect is headed north on highway 56 in a white over tan 4 door doing about 60 miles per hour. Unit 2334 take 85 east five miles to the intersection of 85 and 56. 2123 meet me on 56 8 miles south of 56 and 63."

Sorry for the tangent.
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:46 PM   #9
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I think after a while, you know, I'm not gonna be that up on the latest Justin Bieber record when you're 64
Well, if they want Bieber believers as their main audience, then I guess it is time for him to go. Frankly, I think Falon is much more interesting regardless of age or who sang what hit.
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:52 PM   #10
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Same here, they had one from Montgomery Ward. They got into a bit of debt with it and it took years for them to dig out. Sort of a celebration when it was paid off when I was in HS.
I remember the long lines that always existed at the Sears credit desk in every Sears store. My mom and dad had some sort of trouble with their Sears charge card when they were first married and Dad would never miss an opportunity to knock the "%*@$!*itches at that place."

RE the Tonight Show: I miss Johnny. A class act. I don't think his approach is what the networks are after today.
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