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Laying the first Dover-Calais telegraph cable.

Laying the first Dover-Calais telegraph cable.

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Credit

SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Telegraph cable laying. Engraving of the first successful laying of a telegraph cable across the English Channel in 1851 from Dover to Calais. The cable laying was planned by the British engineer Jacob Brett who used the steam ship Blazer. Two unsuccessful attempts had been made in 1847 and 1850 to lay a telegraph cable. Brett was successful because of progress in many techniques, for example a process for insulating the cables with a layer of gutta-percha (rubber) had been developed. The cross-Channel cable allowed Britain to be connected to the European telegraph system.

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