The Atlantic Telegraph
Cambridge University Press, 2 juin 2011 - 178 pages
In 1866, William Howard Russell (1820-1907) published this work, the official account of the July 1865 expedition on board the Great Eastern to lay a cable along the Atlantic Ocean floor between Valentia, Ireland, and Foilhummerum Bay in Newfoundland. It is illustrated with 26 lithographs of watercolours by Robert Dudley, who also travelled with the expedition. The cable, constructed by the Telegraph Construction & Maintenance Company, was designed to create a communications bridge between North America and Europe, enabling telegrams to be sent and received within minutes, when previously messages could be sent only by ship. The 1865 expedition was the fourth attempt to lay the cable, and although after 1200 miles the cable broke and was lost in the ocean, an expedition the following year was finally successful. This lively account of a pioneering attempt will appeal to anyone with an interest in the history of technology.
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