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报警用的铁盒

DC’s abandoned fire and police call boxes, explained

如果你在华盛顿附近步行或驾车 有可能注意到这些东西
If you’ve walked or driven around Washington, DC, you’ve probably noticed these things.
安装在华盛顿各个街角的铁盒 里面有的装配艺术品
Cast-iron boxes installed on street corners all over the city, sometimes with art or a
有的则写上一点邻里史
little neighborhood history inside.
显然铁盒的年代都十分久远 其原用途也已成为过去
They’re clearly pretty old and not being used for their original purpose anymore.
但它们到底是什么?
But what are they?
为什么它们无处不在?
And why are they everywhere?
事实上 在电话问世之前 这些铁制固定装置在华盛顿之类
It turns out these cast-iron fixtures were vital for rapid communication in cities like
的城市里对快捷通讯起重要作用
Washington before the telephone was invented.
它们是火警及警察报警盒
They’re fire and police call boxes.
而且它们真的很老
and they’re really old.
一些最初的火警铁盒 比如华盛顿克利夫兰公园里的那个
Some of the original fire boxes, like this one in DC’s Cleveland Park, even date back
甚至可以追溯到19世纪60年代
to the 1860s.
它们最初的样式都是竖琴形状的
You can tell the original ones by their harp shape.
到1890年 Gamewell火警电报公司已经在500座美国城市
By 1890, the Gamewell Fire Alarm Telegraph Co. had installed call box systems in 500
安装了铁盒报警系统
American cities.
这张1891年的地图显示了整个华盛顿的铁盒所在地
This map from 1891 shows where they were installed throughout DC.
红点代表火警盒 蓝点代表警察盒
The red dots are fire boxes, and the blue dots are police boxes.
如果你在家里或街区发现火情 可以跑到街角
If you saw a fire in your own house or on the block, you could run down to the corner
拉下火警钥匙
and pull the fire alarm key.
·
It was a telegraph system.
巨型地下电缆将城市里的每个铁盒与中心报警区连接起来
A huge network of underground cables connected every box in the city to the central alarm center.
大型城市的每个街区都有一个火警盒
There is a fire alarm box on every block of the great city.
铁盒敲出的数字与巨型地图上的一个位置相匹配 所以消防部
The number that the box would tap out matched a location on a giant map, so the fire department
可以快速弄清该往何处派送消防车
was able to pretty quickly figure out where to send fire engines.
有可能火情不严重
It could be nothing serious.
也可能有人报假警
It could be a false alarm.
警察报警盒与火警盒的工作方式略有不同
The police boxes worked a bit differently than the fire boxes.
警察盒出现的时间稍晚一点 为椭圆形
They came a little later and had an oval shape.
·
They were initially intended just for policemen doing their rounds.
·
They would have to go to a call box, every, maybe,five or five blocks.
·
to let police headquarters know everything was calm in their district.
与火警盒一样 警察盒也有数字与其位置相对应
Like the fire boxes, the police boxes had numbers corresponding to their location.
警局希望警员在规定的时间从不同的警察盒
And police stations expected to hear from their officers on patrol from a different
发来巡逻信号
box at scheduled times.
警员会核实情况 报告一切正常 或者呼叫后备警员
Officers would check in and say all is well, or they could use the box to call for backup
或者接受巡逻区的最新命令
or receive updated orders for their patrol area.
利用报警盒系统 首都警察局得以在对讲机
Using the call box system, the Metropolitan Police Department was able to keep track of
问世之前 在整个城市与警员保持联系
their officers throughout the city before the invention of two-way radio.
不过 科技最终赶上并改变了这一切
Technology eventually caught up, though.
有更多人安装了家用电话 上世纪70年代911系统面世
More people got phones in their homes, and the 911 system was invented in the 1970s to
将消防和警察部门联系起来
link the fire and police departments.
铁盒也慢慢失去了作用
The boxes slowly lost their purpose.
但他们至今也没有完全过时
But they’re not totally obsolete just yet.
比如 在旧金山和波士顿之类的城市 你依然可以通过电报
In cities like San Francisco and Boston, for example, you can still reach the fire department
联系消防部门
through telegraph.
在地震或洪水来临 电力 手机服务中断时
In situations like earthquakes and floods when power and cellphone services are knocked
这些铁盒依然可以联系上应急服务
out, these boxes are still reliably connected to emergency services.
·
A second alarm has been transmitted from box 2598.the address is…
·
but most cities don’t use them any more.
在华盛顿 报警盒于上世纪70年代末期推出历史舞台
Here in DC, the call boxes were abandoned in the late ’70s.
它们被留在了原地 因为原地不动即省钱
And they were just kind of … left in place because it was cheaper and easier just to
又省力
leave them in place.
之后人们差不多都遗忘它们了
And then people just kind of forgot about them.
人们拿掉盒子 把电话留在了里面
They took off the boxes themselves that had the little telephone in it.
所以它们看起来就像空虚的维多利亚时期的街头装饰
So it just kind of looked like a little blank piece of Victoriana street furniture that
很多人都不知道它们是什么了
… a lot of people had no idea what that was.
不过到了2000年 事情有了转机 华盛顿非盈利文化旅游组织的会员
But that changed in 2000 when members of the nonprofit Cultural Tourism DC founded a project
发起了一个项目 叫做“报警盒艺术”
called “Art on Call.”
他们为城市官员示范了更经济 更有创造力的方式处理铁盒遗产:
They gave city officials a cheaper and more creative way to deal with the iron relics:
把它们变成艺术品
turn them into art.
华盛顿喜欢这个创意 在把700多个铁盒分发给社区之前
The city liked the idea, and even helped out by stripping the lead paint and priming over
甚至帮忙把上面的铅漆和底漆剥了下来
700 boxes before handing them over to the neighborhoods.
该创意不只是重新装饰铁盒 而是召集邻居们
The idea was not to just refurbish the boxes, but for neighborhoods to come together and
让他们决定铁盒的造型
decide on what they wanted their call boxes to look like.
·
We really want neighborhoods to meet and kind of convey
·
what was important in their neighborhood history-wise as well as artistic.
这些铁盒已经在同一个街角注视100多年了
These call boxes have watched over the same street corners for more than 100 years.
尽管它们不再拯救生命 也依然作为文化和当地历史的承载者
And even though they’re not saving lives anymore, they continue to serve their communities
继续服务着一个个社区
as carriers of culture and local history.

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视频概述

这些造型各异的铁盒最开始是做什么用的?它们是如何变成现在这个样子的呢?

听录译者

收集自网络

翻译译者

叶孝安

审核员

A

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KSO5vRGsD1M

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