The First Transatlantic Telegraph Cable Was a Bold, Short-Lived Success


On August 16, 1858, Britain sent the United States an inaugural message via a transatlantic telegraph cable. In it, Queen Victoria congratulated President James Buchanan on their countries’ mutual success at building the very cable she was using to talk to him. Newspapers covered the event as an important and exciting technological achievement with massive potential. News would spread faster. Nations would communicate and coordinate more quickly around evolving world events. Business and trade would accelerate.


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