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Musgrave Telegraph Station (former)

Peninsula Development Road, Musgrave

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Musgrave Telegraph Station house; Heritage Branch Staff

Musgrave Telegraph Station house

Musgrave Telegraph Station butcher shop; EHP

Musgrave Telegraph Station butcher shop

Musgrave Telegraph Station, butcher shop structure; EHP

Musgrave Telegraph Station, butcher shop structure

Musgrave Telegraph Station, Samuel Thompson's grave; EHP

Musgrave Telegraph Station, Samuel Thompson's grave

This former telegraph station is the last of a group of seven constructed by the Queensland Department of Post and Telegraph between 1884 and 1887. It serviced the overland Cape York telegraph line, which stretched from Laura to Thursday Island. The line provided an important communications link between the peninsula and the southern capitals, via Cooktown. It was also an integral element of Brisbane’s administrative control of far north Queensland and of communication with British-annexed southern New Guinea and the Torres Straits. It delineated two major roads to the north: the Peninsula Development Road and Bamaga Road which largely follow the old telegraph line. The telegraph station building was a high-set timber framed corrugated iron building, designed by the Colonial Architect and pre-cut in Brisbane. Seven of these were then erected on site at Fairview, Musgrave, Coen, Mein, Moreton, McDonnell and Paterson. In 1929, the telegraph stations at Musgrave, Mein and McDonnell were closed and most buildings sold. Musgrave survives because it was used as a station homestead. Two graves near a mango tree on the site are those of Sam Thompson, a linesman, and Billy Beirne, a pioneer stockman.

Coordinates: -14.78246462, 143.4847315

Full details of this heritage-registered place are in the Heritage register.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last reviewed
1 July 2022
Last updated
28 February 2023