South Australia - Colonial: 1856 -1900.
Telegraph offices on the north-east lines.


 

Angaston.

The Telegraph Office opened on 7 March 1866. In October 1865, the line was being pegged and the erection of the poles was about to start.

In the South Australian Register of 9 July, 1868, the following small item appeared: "The Telegraph Office has lately been robbed twice of small sums of money; but there is a mystery about the affair, so that we can say little about it".

In the House of Assemby on 13 October 1880, Mr. Basedow asked "whether the Government would, now the necessary money had been passed in the Estimates, go on without any unnecessary delay with the erection of the Post & Telegraph Office in Angaston. The Commissioner of Public Works said as the house had sanctioned the additional sum necessary, the work would be proceeded with as soon as possible".

 

Blanche Town.

The Telegraph Office was opened in 1865.

 

 
PC Front PC reverse
A rare and wonderful momento of Blanch Town. The Postcard is to a Bookseller in London and was sent by the Telegraph Operator. He was requesting a set of books on atmospheric conditions related to telegraphic communication. There is n unframed date stamp of 18 January 1893 and a straight line hand stamp for the station on the reverse.

Caltowie.

The Telegraph Office was opened on 19 October 1877. Tenders were called for the construction of the Post and Telegraph Offices in May 1878. It was hoped that tenders would also be called for a Police Station - which was apparently "very much required".

 

Eden Valley.

The Telegraph Office was opened on 9 October 1876.

 
Eudunda.

The Telegraph Office opened on 22 July 1879 although telegraphic communication had been established with both Kapunda and Morgan on 14 September 1878.

Eudunda Eudunda squared circle date stamp.
13 April 1909.

Size 27 mm × 27 mm.

Used on SI-DO-

The South Australian Register of 29 April 1879 reported on a deputation meeting the previous day with the Minister of Education (Mr. T. King) to urge certain matters connected with the proposed Post & Telegraph station at Eudunda. "Mr. Hopkins stated that there was great objection on the part of the inhabitants of Eudunda to the apparent intention of the Government to make use of a wooden building left by the railway contractor for a post and telegraph station and which was, moreover, 704 yards from the railway station and 242 yards from the main road. This, he represented, was unfair to the residents of Eudunda as the township was rapidly increasing in importance and deserved a more pretentious and more convenient public building than the wooden one proposed. Something over 200,000 bushels of wheat had been bought in Eudunda last harvest and, with greater facilities, the trade would develop. Eudunda was 20 miles south of the nearest Telegraph Station (Truro), 35 miles from Morgan to the north-east, 35 to 40 from the Burra to the north, and 20 from Kapunda Telegraph Station. The people were, however, willing to wait four months for a good substantial building rather than put up with the present proposed makeshift. He understood that £1,500 had been voted by the Parliament for the purpose of establishing telegraphic accommodation at Eudunda and it might as well be properly done. The Government had a 1,000 feet frontage to the main road at Eudunda and could build a station there. Other members of the deputation endorsed the views of Mr. Hopkins.

Mr. King, in reply, said Mr. Hopkins was in error in supposing that £1,500 hid been voted for tbe telegraph and post office; £300 had been voted for a police station, cells, and stables at Eudunda, and £900 for a post and telegraph office at Morgan. The Government bad purchased the building left by Mr. Robb, the railway contractor, simply for temporary purposes so as not to cause delay in connecting the wires. He was glad the depu tation had pointed out the inconvenience of the site and should recommend the matter to his colleagues so that, when a sum for the erection of the post and telegraph office at Eudunda was placed on the Estimates for next session, it might be taken into consideration. As there was no vote at present, he would have to recommend that a sum be placed on the Estimates for the coming session, and there would be a delay of some months in the erection of the buildings, therefore it was better to have a temporary building such as that about which the deputation came. He would see that the matter was not lost sight of and would recommend a central site".

Gumeracha.

The Telegraph Office was opened in 1862.

 

Lobethal.

The Telegraph Office opened in 1864. The town changed name to Tweedvale in 1918.

A new building was constructed in 1883 at a cost of £735.

 

Lyndoch.

The Telegraph Office opened in 1866.

 

Mannum

The Telegraph Office opened on 3 February 1873.

"It was a neat building; the walls are limestone, and the erection will consist of three private rooms and passage for Station master's residence, office, battery and storerooms. The building is in a fine elevated position, commanding a good view of the river both up and down stream".

 
Morgan.

 

Morgan 1894
Mount Pleasant.

The Telegraph Office was opened in 1867.

 
Nurioopta.

The Telegraph Office was opened in January 1866 as a Branch office from Tanunda.

In December 1864, a questiond had been asked in the House of Assembly: "Mr. Bagot enquired whether it was intended to erect a central telegraphic station at Nurioopta as originally intended. The Commissioner of Public Works said there had been no such intention. It was thought Tanunda would be the most central place".

 
Overland Corner.

 

Overland

Renmark.

The Telegraph Office opened in April 1890.

 
   

Stockwell.

 

 

STOCKWELL TELEGRAPH OFFICE

6 October, 1908.— " Complaints are rife at the delay and inconvenience to business people caused by the substitution of the telephone for the telegraph service. If the telephone were on the trunk line, matters would be all right, but as it is all messages have to be telephoned to Nuriootpa hence they are telegraphed to their destination and vice versa. In only two or three cases is this plan not observed. The local people are allowed to speak by telephone to Angaston, Nuriootpa and Tanunda. No notice to that effect is exhibited, but one learns from experience. Such is the efficiency of the service that a message sent to Kapunda, 11 miles distant by road or 17 miles by wire, if sent between 2 and 3 p.m. gets there at 10 a.m. next day or a message from Tanunda sent between 1 and 2 p.m. gets here the next day at 10 a.m., and the distance by road is eight miles. Two years ago this was a telegraph office, employing a regular Commonwealth officer at over £100 and the revenue paid the officer's salary. In addition to that the Savings Bank agency is stronger than those at most of the surrounding townships. The postmistress is also registrar of births, deaths, and marriages, Commonwealth electoral officer, stamp agent, money order officer, has parcels post, &c, and has to deliver telephone and telegraph messages in the town. For this, the magnificent salary of £40 is paid. It is that new kind of office, instituted in recent years, and termed a contract office. Altogether it is a state of things that the people away from the conveniences of cities have a right to complain about".

Tanunda.

The Telegraph Office was opened in 1866. The Foundation Stone for the building was laid at a well documented ceremony on 19 June 1865. It was established as an important repeater station serving Lyndoch and Nurioopta through to Stockwell and Truro. Greenock was added sometime later.

From 1867, Tanunda was also part of the direct Adelaide-Wentworth-Sydney intercolonial line which also passed through the above stations (excluding Angaston and Greenock).

The story of the appointment of a 14 year old boy named Schroeder in 1878 as a messenger at Tanunda gives a most revealing account of the operation and development of telegraphy in South Australia.

Tanunda
Tanunda Post & Telegraph Office 1909.

Teatree Gully.

The Post & Telegraph Office opened on 20 May 1880.

On that day "the township was decorated with bunting, and a triumphal arch, bearing the words "Welcome to Teatree Gully" was erected across the main road, leading into the township ... the (telegraph) wires had run through the township but the difficulty of house accommodation stood in the way, and it was not until the Government purchased the old hotel on the hill that the difficulty was overcome ... (during the opening) The Post-Office clock was distinctly heard to strike, much to the astonishment of the residents".
South Australian Register
21 May 1880.

 

In August 1879, a Parliamentary delegation of 12 members inspected the building proposed for conversion into the new Post & Telegraph office. They had left Parliament House "in two traps" and arrived about two hours later. The building had previously been known as the Highercombe Hotel and it stood on the rise of a hill facing the East Torrens Road but a little way back. The Register noted that "It had been urged by some members that the building was totally unsuitable and was in a very rlcketty tumble-down condition, and whispers that a job had been perpetrated were circulated freely amongst those disaffected towards the Government." The hotel stood on 1.5 acres and had originally cost between £3,000 and £4,000 to build. It was sold to the Government for £600.

The delegation arrived to inspect inside the building but were told the key had been left in Adelaide. "the irrepressible leader of the party was not easily daunted, however and, disappearing round an angle of the wall, soon beamed upon his anxious friends from the open doorway having burglariously entered the premises in a manner which still remains a dark mystery to the remainder of the party. The gates being thus opened, the little band of invaders meandered through the interior of the building, whose walls were found to be in a damp unwholesome state of decay. There are seven downstairs and six upstairs rooms, out of which it was stated the Government intended to accommodate Teatree Gully with a Local Court, a Post and Telegraph Office and quarters for a post mistress and a State school teacher. The Government also proposed to expend £200 in the rehabilitation of the building and, to an unprofessional eye, it certainly looks as if twice that money would not restore it to its pristine wholesomeness. The damp has apparently taken up a permanent abode in the walls, a sort of high tidal mark being visible all round them at a height of about three feet from the ground, and the flooring and woodwork is more or less ant-eaten, while the plaster and cement shows huge fissures and other tokens of instability. Still the site is a very good one ... After the party had inspected the building, Mr. Ward showed them out, and locking the doors from inside, made his egress as mysteriously as he had entered, not one of the party being able to discover how".

Truro.

The Telegraph Office opened on 20 November 1866.

On 12 September 1878, it was reported that the foundation was being laid for the new Post and Telegraph office.