Alfred Biggs

Alfred Biggs (AOT, PH30/1/2892)

Alfred Barratt Biggs (18251900), telephoner and astronomer, is credited with making the first long distance telephone call in Australia in 1877, between Campbell Town and Launceston. A teacher by profession, Biggs' mechanical skills allowed him to build much of his own equipment. His telephone system was built based on articles published on Alexander Bell's work.

Biggs later built a working seismograph, and is credited with regulating time on Launceston's numerous public clocks. He was also an avid amateur astronomer, building an observatory in Launceston's Royal Park. He ground his own lenses for the telescope. Biggs was later Government Astronomer and was made a Fellow of the Royal Society for his work in seismology and astronomy. He had earlier emigrated from England, and in Tasmania lived in Launceston.

Thomas Gunn