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Transmitter (Siemens & Halske)


This object consists of a wooden base with two sets of four glass tubes, leyden jars, filled with a reddish substance mounted vertically in a grey metal framework. Each side has an adjustable spark gap on the back, bottom area. On the front of the glass tube set, the spark gap is attached to a copper tubing which then circles around an inductance coil on a post. This inductance coil has two metal terminals on top of it. On the bottom left corner of the wooden base there is a vertically mounted tube approximately 9cm tall.

Accession Number:

Alternative Name: Radio Transmitter

Primary Materials: Wood, Metal, Glass


On the bottom center of the base: “Gesellschaft fur drahtlose Telegraphie System Prof. Braun. u. Siemens & Halske G.m.b.H.”, and “BERLIN”.

Dimensions (cm):

Height = 21, Width = 26.5, Length = 31.5


Early radio transmitter or a form of ‘Hertz’ experiment.



The instrument itself shows some signs of use. The contents of the tubes appears dried or cracked. Metal surfaces are dotted with areas of corrosion. The surface of the wooden base is scratched and marked. One corner has been sprayed with white paint.

Associated Instruments:


Gesellschaft für drahtlose Telegraphie System Professor Braun und Siemens & Halske G.m.b.H.

Date of Manufacture: c. 1900


In his memoirs, Professor of Astronomy and Physics Clarence A. Chant describes using an apparatus similar to this one at a demonstration evening on March 19, 1903 in University College at the University of Toronto:

“I undertook to to give demonstrations of wireless telegraphy in the West Hall. the University possessed an experimental set of the Braun-Siemens & Halske system which I had obtained from Germany and used in teaching the subject Electricity. By it signals were sent out and received. Also the De Forest Company set up stations in the East and West Halls.” (pg 265)

Chant recalls receiving messages from his wife, Jean Chant during the evening.

This object was collected from Dr. Martin Lee’s collection.

Historical Notes: