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Today marks the 150th anniversary of the laying of the first working transatlantic cable from Valencia in Co. Kerry, in the west of Ireland, to Newfoundland.

The Great Eastern sailing steam ship (the biggest vessel in the world at the time) set sail from Valentia to Newfoundland on 13 July 1866.

It was the brainchild of American entrepreneur Cyrus Field, who made two unsuccessful attempts before finally succeeding.

The cable reduced the time it took for communication to pass between London and New York from two weeks to two minutes.

A campaign is underway to try to get Valentia designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site so the legacy of the cable will live on for centuries to come.


I have seen a couple of fascinating TV programmes about the laying of the cable and I think Valentia should certainly become a Heritage Site.
How remarkable when you think of how communications around the world has improved over the past 150 years.

- Erulisse (one L)