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Old 02-23-2014, 12:27 AM
 
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
674 posts, read 594,666 times
Reputation: 647

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From about 1962 to 1984 the Twin Cities had their own teenage chat room--well sort of. We called it the "Jam Line." When one of the local radio stations told you to call in and win, if you didn't get through, the line would be busy, and you'd hear a bunch of kids screaming over the beeps of the busy signal: "Hello? What's your phone number?"

I spent many hours calling this line and meeting girls. I always thought it was unique to our area, but I found out other cities had them only they were called "Beep Lines." We were the only ones who called it the "Jam Line."

We also would call the Loop Lines, which were Northwestern Bell telephone test lines. You'd dial one number (341-4011) and give it's connecting pair out over the Jam Line (341-4010). When someone called the other number you'd be connected as if they had called your house directly. It was great fun!

Recently I heard a radio broadcast on MPR where they interviewed this guy who had saved audio recordings of the old Jam Lines! You can still listen to the archived broadcast story here:

Jam Line: Remembering a Twin Cities teen phenomenon | Minnesota Public Radio News

Great memories!
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Old 02-23-2014, 12:56 AM
 
413 posts, read 682,059 times
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I don't remember that, but I do remember Joybubbles.
Joybubbles - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

We'd use to look up the last number in the phone book, and it was either Zzzyology Talkline or Zzzyrific Funline, and it was run by this guy.
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Old 02-23-2014, 01:21 AM
 
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
674 posts, read 594,666 times
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Joybubbles was one of the great Phone Phreakers. I too occasionally called his Zzzzrific Funline. R.I.P.
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Old 04-19-2014, 11:42 PM
 
Location: Twin Cities, MN
111 posts, read 94,867 times
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I remember hearing stories about a Jam Line when I was a kid, but I never called one. That was a very interesting radio interview though. I just can't imagine calling up someone I had never talked to or met before and having a conversation with them.
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Old 07-08-2014, 10:59 PM
 
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
674 posts, read 594,666 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pooterdunk View Post
I remember hearing stories about a Jam Line when I was a kid, but I never called one. That was a very interesting radio interview though. I just can't imagine calling up someone I had never talked to or met before and having a conversation with them.
It was actually pretty exciting since most of them were of the opposite sex. It was a Teen Dating Thing. However, there was one Jam Line that didn't have a busy signal, it was the old phone number that people called to get the correct time. It was broken, and a new number had been set up; however, the recording telling people the new number didn't work, and if you called it, you could hear and talk to everyone else who called it. This became a very popular number to call in the middle of the night for teenagers.

There were some older guys on there and one of them had his own apartment. We all sat on this line talking and one night the older guy with an apartment offered to host a party where we could all go and meet each other! This was way cool!

The date was set, and about 100 of us total strangers drove to his apartment and all met for the first time. It was one of the most awesome get-togethers I ever attended. None of us had ever met in person before that night and afterwards several of us became friends, a few of which I'm still in touch with today 35 years later!
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Old 11-29-2020, 12:13 PM
 
1 posts, read 502 times
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Default Jam line in NY state in the 70s

I remember the Jam Line well. In NY back in the 70s, you would get this recording if you called a out of order or bad number." I'm sorry, the number you reached is not available now, please call back later or try the number again" The recording would then rewind and play over. At the end of the message, there was a 15 or 20 second moment of silence teenagers discovered you could connect with hundreds of other kids ,all yelling out their phone numbers. I met many girls this way and amazingly enough, lost my virginity to one young lady I met this way. I was 14 she was 19 ! LMAO oh the joys and awkwardness of those teenage years in the 70s! The jam line was available through most of the 70s, I think the last time I tried it was 1976 or 77.
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