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History of the Atlantic Cable & Undersea Communications
from the first submarine cable of 1850 to the worldwide fiber optic network

All America Cables

In 1867 James A. Scrymser's International Ocean Telegraph Company laid the first line from Florida to Cuba, 235 miles.   In 1878 Scrymser incorporated the Mexican Cable Company, and the following year the Central and South American Cable Company, the predecessors of All America Cables, Inc.   The names were changed shortly afterwards to the Mexican Telegraph Company and the Central and South American Telegraph Company.  The cable routes were expanded over the years to link the US to all of South America, and in 1917 the companies adopted the All America Cables name.  Scrymser died in 1918, but the company continued to expand its service, and in 1927 merged with the International Telephone and Telegraph Corporation (ITT).

Click on each image for a full-size view

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Modern transmitting and receiving circuits

1928 50th anniversary medal by Whitehead and Hoag. 212grams, 83mm diameter.


A Half Century of Cable Service to the Three Americas 1878-1928
New York, 1928, All America Cables, Inc., 128pp.  A history of the company on its fiftieth anniversary

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Original System Map


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1881 Cable Sections

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1928 System Map

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1937 Cover (Bill Glover Collection)

1858 Cover showing cableship All America

All America Cables Building,
Buenos Aires, Argentina, 1928

Instrument Room at Buenos Aires Station

All America Cables cigarette lighter.
Image courtesy of Maurício Ganzo Pereira of Brazil

For two personal stories of life with All America Cables, see
George S. Watson's Remembrances of a Cable Operator
and Captain Frederick Hack and CS All America.

Last revised: 17 February, 2013

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