Historical information

The battery powered set, which dates from the second half of the twentieth century, comprises two main components, the electronic keyer with a single lever for tapping, and a transmitter (?), both connected by a keying cable. Morse code was invented in the 1830s by American, Samuel Finely Breese by using electrical signals to quickly transmit information over a long range. In the early 1890s Italian inventor, Guglielmo Marconi improved the technology to the point where it became an essential device used for commercial and government purposes. The first practical applications were demonstrated with maritime messaging, where this simple mode of communication was seen as a timely replacement for the historic practice of signaling by flags, lights and foghorns. Cape Schanck has an earlier Morse code key, which is original to the lightstation (CSLS 0035), and Cape Otway has
another early example although its provenance to the lightstation has not been formally verified (COLS 0074).


The Morse code set has first level contributory significance for its historical value as an earlier communications device that has since been made redundant by more sophisticated technologies.

Physical description

Morse code key set. Comprised of the tapping component and a metal box part with a white electrical cord.

Inscriptions & markings