Fredericksburg Telephone Company

GAYLE AND NICK LONGLEY’S business, Fredericksburg Telephone Company, could be described as a “mom and pop” operation since they’re the owners and the only employees. — Standard-Radio Post/Danny Hirt

By Danny Hirt— Fredericksburg Telephone Company is a different kind of business — it’s not a brick-and-mortar retail store, it’s not a place where you’d go to get a cell phone, it’s not even where you’d go to get hooked up for home phone service.

Instead, it’s a business you’d call on if you’re wanting a multi-phone system and the associated wiring, which includes wiring for computers and other similar services in the interconnect telephone industry.

Nick and Gayle Longley started their business nearly 21 years ago (the anniversary will be in October) at the suggestion of Nick’s father, a retired Southwestern Bell employee at the time.

Since then, Fredericksburg Telephone has been installing and servicing wires in buildings primarily for businesses, as well as taking care of cable and computer hook-up needs. Also, there are residential work needs that come along occasionally.

One of their specialties is putting in small business phone systems, such as that used in the Nortel program.

While Gayle’s business background comes in the form of working for banks, she willingly gave that up when Nick started Fredericksburg Telephone. After all, she added, she was tired of having to dress up every day for the office and “put on the war paint and have my fingernails done.”

With industrial construct­ion work in his past, Nick actually has real hands-on experience in the telephone industry.

“I was the first of two male telephone operators in Lubbock, Texas, when I was attending Texas Tech University,” he noted.

But, through the years, the Longleys have seen their share of changes in the interconnect telephone industry. After all, it was not too long ago that they were involved in another telephone service niche.

“We used to be in the pay phone business here in Fredericksburg,” Nick said, followed quickly by the one-word descriptor “dinosaur!”

While much of the buzz in the phone industry is about wireless devices these days, it would seem to be only fitting that the Longleys are still involved with hard-wiring.

“We’re old-fashioned people,” Gayle said, indicating that they’ve “elected to stay small” so they can offer “fast, fair and friendly” service to their customers. This, they both pointed out, means using cables and wires, not wireless devices.

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