1962 Telegraph Centenary
This stamp issue celebrated the centenary of the introduction of the first
telegraph service in New Zealand.
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Edward Dobson (born 1816) was a
civil engineer who was one of the original purchasers of Canterbury
Association land. He emigrated to New Zealand in 1850. Described as a man
of "strenuous action", he was Provincial Engineer between 1854
and 1868, during which time he attempted to confine the Waimakariri river
within its banks to stop flooding in Christchurch; supervised the draining
of 10,000 acres of swamp land around Rangiora; designed and supervised the
construction of the breakwater in Lyttelton Harbour and supervised the
establishment of the railway system throughout Canterbury.
planned and introduced New Zealand's first telegraph circuit which was
operated for the first time on the 1st of July 1862. The telegraph line ran
over the Port Hills which separate the port of Lyttelton from Christchurch
and was operated from the Police station in Lyttelton to Christchurch
Police Station as is shown on the 3d stamp. This stamp was designed by A G
Mitchell and was issued by the Post Office one month early on the 1st of
The 8d stamp was designed by A.G. Mitchell's father
L.C. Mitchell. It features a 'modern' 1960s teleprinter - most
likely a Series 1 Siemens Halske Teleprinter Model 100 which were
manufactured in Germany and sold internationally in the early 1960s. These
machines were well built and incorporated many advances in post-war
technology. The model 100 included the new PMG Telex Service for businesses
which were able to connect directly to each other via teleprinter both
nationally and internationally.
Interestingly, during the Second
World War Siemens and Halske produced the T52 German teleprinter cipher
machine codenamed Sturgeon by British cryptanalysts. The T52 was a
permanently connected machine used by the Luftwaffe and German Naval units.
It was by far the most complex cipher of the three used by German forces
and was least often broken by the British at Bletchley Park - usually
because the same messages were often sent using easier to attack or already
This page was last updated on 17 Apr 2021
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