Can you hear me now…? Good.

Plucked from street corners nationwide, phone booths disappeared while we were busy talking on our mobile phones and crossing in front of cars without looking. But before we get used to having one less object to avoid, these private sanctuaries may be on the rebound. A phone booth for the mobile world, The Cell Zone is the work of Salemi Industries of Woburn, MA (home of the first public library designed by architect H.H. Richardson, who also designed the Trinity Church in Boston). Other solutions for mobile users include a handmade, retro style booth by C. P. Booth of Atlanta, the Silence Chair by Antti Evävaara with transparent sides to contain conversations, and the Peek-a-boo Chair by Stefan Borselius, with Darth Vader aesthetics and beauty salon dryer chair functionality. In some ways, these private areas are a return to how phones were first used. A phone booth was installed just outside the Oval Office in 1877, and beginning with Rutherford Hayes, each U.S. President used this phone booth until Herbert Hoover ended the fun and had a telephone placed on his desk in 1929.