This glazed frame, encircled by a short length of cable, contains an illuminated manuscript copy of the first mesage sent using the Atlantic telegraph cable in 1858. At the time it was made, a total of 366 telegrams had been sent using the cable between New Foundland in the United States and Valentia in Ireland. Unfortunately, the cable failed after only three weeks in operation. Another attempt was made in 1865, but this too failed when the cable broke two miles under the sea. It was not until 1866 that Brunel's (1806-1859) steam ship, the 'Great Eastern', laid the first succesful trans-Atlantic telegraph cable.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library