Story: Intelligence services

Radio operators at Mount Etako station, Tinakori Hill, 1912

At the outbreak of war in 1914 the Post Office's coastal radio Morse stations were taken over by the navy. The Post Office radio operators continued to work the stations, listening for enemy Morse-code messages. The relatively small amount of radio traffic in the 1910s meant that messages could be heard from very long distances without interference. The ZLW station on Tinakori Hill (later called Te Ahumairangi Hill), Wellington, was one of three established in 1911. The other two were ZLD in Auckland and ZLC in the Chatham Islands. By 1914 two more stations had been set up, ZLA at Awanui, in Northland, and ZLB at Awarua, near Bluff.

Sound file from Radio New Zealand Mō Te Reo Irirangi o Aotearoa. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Radio New Zealand Mō Te Reo Irirangi o Aotearoa (Spectrum 17 July 2011: ZLW Calling - the Centenary of New Zealand's First Radio Station).

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Sydney Charles Smith Collection (PA-Group-00242)
Reference: 1/1-020077-G
Photograph by Sydney Charles Smith

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Peter Clayworth, 'Intelligence services - Intelligence services, 1800s to 1945', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/speech/34067/radio-operators-at-mount-etako-station-tinakori-hill-1912 (accessed 11 August 2022)

Story by Peter Clayworth, published 20 Jun 2012