Historical information

A telegraph or Morse key, sends a series of electrical signals down a telegraph line or via radio frequencies; the signals are interpreted as Morse code, a binary form of language constructed of 'dots and dashes', combinations of which correspond to letters of the alphabet. The motion of the key acts to complete an electrical circuit between the sender and receiver, producing a short pulse 'dot' or longer 'dash,' the space between the code indicates a broken current or wave.

Physical description

Device used to transmit telegraphic messages in Morse code through the manipulation of electric signals. The metal 'key' sits in a central bracket on which it moves up and down aided by a spring, controlled by an operator pushing the black Bakelite knob on the protruding end of the device. The motion presses the key onto a circular metal disc, completing the circuit and sending an electrical pulse to the receiver. The apparatus is secured to a wooden base with wires attached to the terminals; a cut out section of the base suggests wires may have entered through this area, attaching to a battery.

Inscriptions & markings

Printed ink on base: "PMG"