Valentia Transatlantic Cable Station

Knightstown , County Kerry , Ireland

About Valentia Transatlantic Cable Station

Valentia Transatlantic Cable Station is the world’s oldest Atlantic cable station. It was on Valentia Island that the first cables were laid by the Anglo American Cable Company in 1857 and, despite this initial attempt being unsuccessful, the concept later took hold.

Operational from 1866, Valentia Transatlantic Cable Station was eventually one of several in the area along with Waterville and Ballinskelligs. At its peak at the turn of the century, the station was the workplace of some forty telegraphers plus support staff and was a community unto itself. It would close in 1966.

Today, some of the white painted buildings of the station can still be viewed from the outside along the main street of Knightstown, with a plaque commemorating their history. Those who want to see original items from the cable station can visit the modest display at the Valentia Heritage Centre, which has a room containing items such as cable and telegraph equipment.

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