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Posted by prez on December 30, 2011 Slideshow

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1 Comment

Reply Robt. S.
2:18 PM on March 10, 2013 
What you have there is what ?s known euphemistically in some circles as a "Rooke Register". The moniker of Rooke was the original name of the Providence, Rhode Island outfit that manufactured and leased the things until sometime in probably the 1930s. Sometime in that period, the company was changed to "Money Meters". Those little Rooke brand hand coin registers are shown in street railway industry publications as early as 1907. In the early days when first instituted aboard the streetcars, the Rooke coin registers caused instant labor unrest. With streetcars converted to ?one man? operation, fare collecting conductors were loosing their jobs. The motorman were then assigned to pick up fares directly from passengers via Rooke hand held coin registers. A couple of transit company worker strikes and at least one full blown riot can be directly attributed to installation of the Rooke hand held coin registers being put into service on some streetcars.

Currently, I own three of these particular registers. They all are of the nickel and dime type with a single cyclometer on each side. A few years ago, I had a Money Meter device that not only accepted nickels and dimes but also quarters. That register had a third window for the 25-cent coin on the ?B? side.

Of the trio presently owned, one is an unusual version being made for attachment to the top of a Johnson - Cleveland non-registering vault fare box. There is a monuting housing on the bottom of this register with a lever and brass topped handle to ring in the coin. This one does not have the retrofitted "Money Meter" company cover plate and is stamped "Rooke Register" with 1919 pending patent dates.

Probably due to the rugged ndustrial high quality of these hand held cash registers along with their small size and clever uniqueness many survive to this day. In the past few years, I've owned about a dozen of these Money Meter coin registers that are part of a modest collection of street railway fare equipment. In recent times the most I've paid for one of these units is about $45. Picked up a nice condition ?Money Meter? labeled hand coin register in late 2012 with intact date & seals in the high number range of #10756 for $18 plus six-bucks shipping. Need to figure that unlike most things, these items don?t take up much space, cost money to maintain and display well in a nook someplace. Good luck and have fun!