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Electromagnetic Relay Device as used at the Ballarat School of Mines Federation University Historical Collection (Cat. No. 4051)



The newly established Telegraphy course at the Ballarat School of Mines commenced in June of 1874 under the lectureship of William P. Béchervaise.

It is announced in our advertising columns that a class in telegraphy will be at once formed at the Ballarat School of Mines under the charge of Mr W. P. Bechervaise. Instruction will be given by Mr Bechervaise every Tuesday at seven o'clock in the evening, and on Saturday at two. Students are requested to enrol themselves at once with Mr Barnard, the registrar.[1]

The first intake of students numbered 46 women and two men. Examinations for the first year were conducted in September of 1874, and then May and September in subsequent years. The course examiners were Robert L.J. Ellery and Samuel Walker McGowan.

First Graduates of Telegraphy at the Ballarat School of Mines

Of the 48 students enrolled in the inaugural Telegraphy course, seven students were awarded Competency Certificates, and all graduates were women. The first graduates of Telegraphy were:

Marianne (Mary) Drury

Annie Winifred Eastwood

Mary Frances Farrer

Annie Louisa Gatliff

Eliza Beaumont Gatliff

Mary Gatliff

Jemima Lynn


Telegraphy, October examination (1875). — William Vallins Bain, Walter Campbell, Frederick James Gomm, Edmund Burgess Goode, Edward Carter Holmes, Alexander Richmond Kempson. Frederick Matthews, Eliza Milne, Isabella Morrison Sherard, George Mowbray Simmonds, Alexander Smith.[2]

The Ballarat School of Mines ... The students in telegraphy are mostly females, qualifying themselves for public positions.[3]

Also See

Ballarat School of Mines

Samuel McGowan


  1. Ballarat Courier, 30 May 1874.
  2. Ballarat Courier, 23 December 1875.
  3. The Age, 16 May 1888.
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