Adelaide House Museum


Designed by Rev John Flynn (the man of the $20 note) and built-in 1926, Adelaide House was the first hospital in Alice Springs. Designed for the hot inland climate, it is a two-storey stone structure with wide verandahs, a ventilated roof and an innovative ducted ventilation system whereby incoming air was cooled in an underground cellar, circulated by ducts, and then extracted through the upper storey. It was also equipped with modern conveniences, being the first building in Alice Springs to be powered by electricity.

The building is closely associated with Rev. John Flynn, its aero-medical offshoot, and the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, which was involved in its planning and construction. Its engine room was the scene of one of Australia’s first successful outback radio experiments—here on 25 November 1926, Flynn’s radio expert, Alfred Traeger, made Australia’s first field-radio telegram reception and transmission. Traeger later won a place in national history as the inventor of the pedal radio.

Come in and enjoy the history of this beautiful and iconic building and the hospitality of the local volunteers who will share a cuppa with you after the tour. It is a simple museum, but the volunteers work hard to preserve the memory of the tough and dedicated people who served the outback since the turn of the century.