In a world in which news and information flashes around the globe in an instant, time lags are inconceivable. But they were a fact of life in the 19th century. One of those adept, impressively learned, sometimes impractical 19-century woodshed thinkers and tinkers, Cyrus Field, knew only a little of the hard science behind stringing a submarine telegraph cable that would link the financial markets of London and New York.Field was not the first to conceive such a venture, but he was the first to act on the idea, writing to Samuel Morse and finding another ally in the naval surveyor and architect Matthew Fontaine Maury. With the limited sum of $1.5 million, Field and company eventually managed to make the transatlantic cable a reality, and even if its early iterations turned out to be duds, their work did in fact revolutionize communications and "laid down the foundations of what would become...a global village."
A Thread Across the Ocean is a satisfying book for the budding entrepreneur and general readers as well.
"This is an appealing account...and an entertaining reminder of the storied past of expensive technology gambles." (Publishers Weekly)
"Gordon, a business historian, skillfully and briskly recounts the saga of the transatlantic telegraph project....Gordon's evocation of Field's pioneering spirit will fascinate tech-history buffs." (Booklist
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- Derek Malley
- Eric Pietz