SHIPS Laying Telegraph Cable Agamemnon storm antique print 1858
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Home > Prints and Maps by Subject > Ships

SHIPS: Laying Telegraph Cable: Agamemnon, storm, antique print, 1858

Price: £7.99

CAPTION BELOW PICTURE: 'The "Agamemnon" in a storm '

Transatlantic Telegraph Cable
The transatlantic telegraph cable was the first cable used for telegraph communications laid across the floor of the Atlantic Ocean. It crossed from Foilhommerum, Valentia Island, in western Ireland to Heart's Content in eastern Newfoundland. The transatlantic cable bridged North America and Europe, and expedited communication between the two. Whereas it would normally take at least ten days to deliver a message by ship, it now took a matter of minutes by telegraph.
Five attempts to lay it were made over a nine-year periodin 1857, two in 1858, in 1865, and in 1866before lasting connections were finally achieved by the SS Great Eastern captained by Sir James Anderson with the 1866 cable and the repaired 1865 cable. Additional cables were laid between Foilhommerum and Heart's Content in 1873, 1874, 1880 and 1894. By the end of the 19th century, British-, French-, German- and American-owned cables linked Europe and North America in a sophisticated web of telegraphic communications.
Cyrus West Field was the force behind the first transatlantic telegraph cable, attempted unsuccessfully in 1857 and completed on August 5, 1858. Although not considered particularly successful or long-lasting, it was the first transatlantic cable project to yield practical results. The first official telegram to pass between two continents was a letter of congratulation from Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom to the President of the United States James Buchanan on August 16. The cable was destroyed the following month when Wildman Whitehouse applied excessive voltage to it while trying to achieve faster telegraph operation. The shortness of the period of use undermined public and investor confidence in the project, and delayed efforts to restore a connection. A next attempt was undertaken in 1865 with much-improved material and, following some setbacks, a connection was completed and put into service on July 28, 1866. This time the connection was more durable, and increased public confidence resulted when the 1865 cable was repaired and put into service shortly afterwards.
Whereas previously communication could only happen over ship, the transatlantic telegraph cable sped up communication to within minutes, allowing communication to happen within the same day. In the 1870s, duplex and quadruplex transmission and receiving systems were set up that could relay multiple messages over the cable. In cross-Atlantic currency trading, the pound sterling came to be referred as "cable" and to this day a cable in financial jargon is one million pounds . The great utility of the cable built on itself, and multiple cables were established soon afterward.

(Source Wikipedia)

Notes on the historical context / background to the print can be viewed at: Transatlantic Telegraph Cable

DATE PRINTED: 1858    

IMAGE SIZE: Approx 12.5 x 22.5cm, 4.75 x 8.75 inches (Medium)

TYPE: Antique wood engraved print

CONDITION: Good; suitable for framing. However, please note: Spot in margin; The image shown may have been scanned from a different example of this print than that which is offered for sale: The print you will receive is in Good condition but there may be minor variations in the condition compared to that shown in the image. Please check the scan for any blemishes prior to making your purchase. This print has been scanned in black and white, however any foxing or spotting highlighted in this statement may appear brown on the actual print. Virtually all antiquarian maps and prints are subject to some normal aging due to use and time which is not obtrusive unless otherwise stated. We offer a no questions asked return policy.

AUTHENTICITY: This is an authentic historic print, published at the date stated above. It is not a modern copy.

VERSO: There are images and/or text printed on the reverse side of the picture. In some cases this may be visible on the picture itself (please check the scan prior to your purchase) or around the margin of the picture.


PROVENANCE: Illustrated London News

SHIPS: Laying Telegraph Cable: Agamemnon, storm, antique print, 1858
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