August 16: Transatlantic Telegraph

On this date in 1858, President Buchanan and Queen Victoria exchanged the first transatlantic telegraph messages.

Transatlantic Telegraph Banner

Share this banner on social media to commemorate the exchange of the first transatlantic telegraph messages.

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Cyrus West Field

Cyrus West Field laid the first telegraph cable across the Atlantic Ocean in 1858. Illustration from the ClipArt ETC website.

Queen Victoria

Queen Victoria sent the first transatlantic cable message on August 16, 1858. Illustration from the ClipArt ETC website.

President James Buchanan

Portrait of Buchanan from the ClipArt ETC website. Buchanan was at his “Summer White House” in Bedford, PA when he received the transatlantic cable from the Queen.

Telegraph Cable Maps

A collection of approximately 80 telegraph cable maps from the Maps ETC website.

Cable Illustration

Illustration of the first transatlantic cable from the ClipArt ETC website.

Great Eastern Cable of 1865

The first transatlantic cable failed within a matter of weeks. This map shows the track of the ship, the “Great Eastern” as it laid the cable of 1865. This cable snapped and it wasn’t until 1866 that Europe and America were again connected by a transatlantic cable.