A link to a video from Roger Ebert’s Journal shows some footage from the 1928 premiere of Charlie Chaplin’s ‘The Circus’ in which a heavyset older woman appears to be speaking on a cell phone. Could this be a time traveler? That’s exactly what George Clarke, the man who spotted the anomaly, thinks. Fact or fiction? Where’s Jonathan Frakes when you need him? Possible explanation below the video.
This may explain what we’re seeing in the video. It’s a hearing aid of some sort.
“1924 Siemens patent for a compact, pocket sized carbon microphone/amplifier device suitable for pocket instruments. For a while, the carbon amplifier patented by Siemens played a major role in hearing aid technology and significantly raised the volume of hearing aids. The electrical energy controlled by the carbon microphone was not fed to the receiver directly. It first drove the diaphragm of an electromagnetic system connected to a carbon-granule chamber. Current was transmitted across this chamber from the vibrating diaphragm electrode to the fixed electrode plate. The amplified current produced mechanical vibrations in the electromagnetic hearing diaphragm that were then transmitted to the ear as sound.” –