Telefonica takes command. Private monopoly, automatization and expansion of the telephone in Spain, 1924-1945


  • Ángel Calvo Calvo Universitat de Barcelona



Telephone, Compañía Telefónica Nacional de España (CTNE), Monopoly, Automatization


This article approaches the expansion of the telecommunications, one of the central components of the Second Technological Revolution. Its main purpose is to incorporate the Spanish case to the international growing wave of historical investigation on the telephone, offering a general vision of the period that includes from the creation of CTNE in 1924 to its nationalization in 1945. It is equivalent to study the telephone as a whole during those years, given the almost complete identification between the sector and CTNE. Both from the technical and economic approach, the article studies the radical turn that the CTNE creation meant, as well as the expansion and modernization of the sector, emphasizing the territorial factors and components. Its main documentary base lies in the primary sources, among them those of the protagonist enterprise. In sum, it deals with a key episode in the birth and expansion of the big company in Spain.