Pennsylvania 6-5000 is claimed by its owner, the Hotel Pennsylvania, to be the oldest continuing phone number in New York City. The telephone number is based on the old telephone exchange name system. The first two letters "PE" in PE6-5000 stand for the rotary dial numbers 7 and 3, making the number (with Manhattan's area code) +1 (212) 736-5000. The exact age of the phone number, and the veracity of the Pennsylvania's claim, are unknown. The earliest it could have existed is around 1930, when seven-digit telephone numbers were first adopted in New York City.
When seven-digit telephone numbers came to New York (along with Philadelphia, Boston and Chicago) the 3L-4N (3 letter-4 number) system was first used. Thus originally, the Hotel Pennsylvania would have written its telephone number as "PENnsylvania 5000". A few years later, this was replaced by the so-called "2–5 numbers" or 2L-5D, two letters and five digits (for example a number on the Pennsylvania exchange would be shown as PEnnsylvania 6-5000).
In 1969, the PE6 telephone exchange was the first in Manhattan to be transferred from panel switch to 1ESS switch, temporarily making it a significant part of New York Telephone's service crisis.
1940 Glenn Miller recording 
Many big band names played in the Hotel Pennsylvania's Cafe Rouge, including the Glenn Miller Orchestra. The phone number became the inspiration for the Glenn Miller 1940 Top 5 Billboard hit of the same name, the music written by Jerry Gray and the lyrics by Carl Sigman, and released as RCA Bluebird 78 B-10754-A backed with "Rug Cutter's Swing". In turn, the tune was tributed by synthpop duo Erasure on their little-known song 'Sixty-Five Thousand' from The Innocents. It also inspired the pun title Transylvania 6-5000, used separately by a Bugs Bunny cartoon and a full-length live-action film. The number was requested in the film Breakfast at Tiffany's, referenced in a mix of the Milli Vanilli song "Baby Don't Forget My Number," and used by David Lynch in the third episode of his television series, Twin Peaks.
See also 
- "Article". Hospitality Net. 2009-04-17. Retrieved 2011-08-11.
- Pollak, Michael (2008-11-14). "F. Y. I. – Dialing Up History – Question". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 2011-08-11.
- [ Displaying Abstract ] (2011-08-07). "DIAL PHONES TO BRING NEW NUMBER SYSTEM - Company to Alter New York's Technique to Facilitate Mechanical Operation. WILL NUMBER EXCHANGES Two Letters and Numeral to Precede Designation of Station Called. PLAN EFFECTIVE DEC. 15 Largest Revision of Kind Will Make It Possible to Reach Wide Area Without Operator's Aid. To Install System Gradually. Dearth of Exchange Names. Adaptable to Wide Growth. - Article - NYTimes.com". Select.nytimes.com. Retrieved 2011-08-11.
- "OFFICE TOWER DOOMS HOTEL PENNSYLVANIA. Hosted Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington – Money". NY Daily News. 2007-01-05. Retrieved 2011-08-11.
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