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

CS Cable Enterprise (1)
by Bill Glover


Built in 1924 by A. and J. Inglis Ltd., Glasgow

Length 198.9 ft  Breadth 30.1 ft  Depth 19.4 ft  Gross tonnage 1844

Built for the Western Telegraph Company. Fitted with two cable tanks, both forward, No 1, held 110 tons and No 2, 190 tons. No 2 tank was fitted with a portable inner tank which enabled two types of cable to be worked at the same time. Johnson and Phillips supplied and fitted the cable machinery which consisted of a combined paying out-picking up machine with drums of 5 ft 8½ ins dia mounted forward on the main deck. Three bow sheaves each 3 ft 6 ins dia were fitted. Transferred in 1929 to Imperial and International Communications Ltd. From 1935 until 1941 based at Castries, St Lucia carrying out repairs on the east coast of South America.

In 1941 she was ordered to Singapore, much to the consternation of the crew who were all from the Caribbean. Assured that they would be returned once the ship was manned by a replacement crew they agreed. The route taken was Pernambuco, Rio de Janeiro, during which she repaired two cables. Then to Cape Town, where she took on cable to repair the Zanzibar - Aden cable. From Cape Town to Mombasa, repairing the Zanzibar - Aden cable, before setting out for Colombo, Ceylon and finally Singapore. On arrival the crew were paid off and a Malayan crew signed on. In February 1942 Cable Enterprise began laying a cable between Java and Sumatra but was stopped when the Japanese invaded, the cable being cut and abandoned. Cable Enterprise sailed for Batavia and was then ordered to Fremantle, Australia. In August 1945 Cable Enterprise sailed back into Singapore following the liberation. Eventually returned to the West Indies and west coast of South America carrying out repairs until 1955, when sold to an Italian company, Comital SA., registered in Switzerland. Various schemes for the ships use were put forward none of which were taken up. Finally sold to Dutch shipbreakers arriving there on 20 April  1960.



Connected Florianopolis and Rio Grande do Sul to main Brazilian cable

1942 Java - Sumatra (abandoned)

Cableships Index Page

Last revised: 19 November, 2011

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