The 'Great Eastern' and an old frigate, off Sheernes, Kent, 1866.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Lithograph after Robert Dudley from 'The Atlantic Telegraph', a book by W H Rusell with 26 illustrations by Dudley, published in 1866. This shows the old frigate with its cargo of cable alongside Brunel's 'Great Eastern' at Sheernes, Kent. The cable was used for the succesful third attempt to lay a transatlantic communications line. It was the first permanent telegraph cable link to cros the Atlantic, reducing communication times from the length of a sea voyage to a few minutes.