Late 1860s Partrick & Carter Camelback (Phelps / Western Union Pattern)
Here is another beautiful recent addition to my collection. It’s a nickel plated Partrick & Carter Camelback from the late 1860s. This is a copy of the famous Phelps / Western Union pattern camelback used extensively in the Civil War. The Phelps Camelback was copied by other manufactures during the ‘Reconstruction’ period after the war. I have not been able to positively identify the manufacture date, but am reasonably sure it falls between the late 1860s and early 1870s. And I have not been able to find another Partrick & Carter Camelback like this online, let alone another Phelps / Western Union pattern Camelback that is nickel plated. This “Question Mark” style camelback, with its exaggerated hump denotes an early version. Later Camelbacks of the 1870s had a less pronounced hump. You will note a missing height adjuster screw/nut and a broken trunion screw on one side. Other than that, this key is complete with original hair clip spring. I’m searching for someone to reproduce the three broken/missing nickel plated parts. If you know of someone with the right skills, please contact me. I’ve used this key on special occasions such as Straight Key Night.
To view more detailed pictures of this nickel plated late 1870s Partrick & Carter Camelback telegraph key, click here.