Cherishable Items: Alabama man gets a charge out of his electric insulator collection

Cherishable Items: Alabama man gets a charge out of his electric insulator collection
Roy Hale has amassed an impressive collection of electric insulators. (David Macon / Alabama NewsCenter)

Electric insulators – those glass or ceramic things you may spot on power poles or power lines – may not look very collectable at first glance.

But for Roy Hale of Brewton, they are cherishable items.

“As I worked with the power company, I dealt with insulators. We used them on our lines,” Hale said. “Every once in a while, I’d find one that was kind of old, I’d pick it up and keep it.”

After more than 40 years of picking them up as he found them, Hale got serious about collecting and now has hundreds of all colors, shapes, sizes and of various materials.

“I guess insulators are kind of in my blood, so to speak,” he said.

He loves the history of insulators, which date back to the telegraph and some radio transmitters. The growth of the telephone and electricity led to a much wider variety of insulators over the years.

“I’ll probably collect insulators probably until my toes turn up,” Hale said.

Cherishable Items – The Electric Insulator Collector from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

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