Cyrus Field & the Atlantic Cable 1866
Cyrus Field (standing, fourth from right) organized a British-American enterprise that led to this dramatic event captured by artist Robert Dudley aboard the steamship Great Eastern. Having just laid a telegraph cable from Ireland to Newfoundland, the crew retrieved the broken end of a cable lost the previous summer. We see the moment when a message came back from Ireland. It worked! Cables could cross oceans, and be picked up and repaired.
Submarine telegraphy was a major innovation, essential to today’s telecommunications network. Field’s character and persistence, combined with the expertise of British scientists and engineers, made this remarkable achievement possible.