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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 La Plata
by Bill Glover


Built in 1862 by Palmers Bros & Company, Newcastle upon Tyne

Length 249.9 ft  Breadth 30.5 ft  Depth 21.9 ft  Gross tonnage 1218

Originally named Zarah, the name was changed when the ship was purchased by W.T. Henley’s Telegraph Works. Four tanks were fitted with a total coiling capacity of 20,473 cu ft. A combined paying out-picking up machine was fitted forward and a paying out machine aft, as well as a single bow sheave and single stern sheave.

Foundered in the Bay of Biscay on 29 November 1874 with the loss of 58 crew. At the time La Plata was on charter to Siemens Bros to lay a cable for the London-Platino Brazilian Telegraph Company which was to run between Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Chuy, Uruguay.


1868 Denmark - Bornholm - Leipaja,  Russia
1869 Peterhead, Scotland - Skivoldsvig, Norway
1869 Norway - England
1870 Scotland - Orkney Islands
Captain I.S. Gallilee:
1870 Bona - Malta section of Marseilles, France - Bona, Algeria - Malta
1870 Gibraltar - Villa Real
1871 Tagus River
1871 Lowestoft, England - Borkum - Greetseil, Germany
1871 Porth Crugmor, Anglesey - Howth, Ireland No 1
Captain I.S. Gallilee:
1873 Cuxhaven, England - Heligoland
1873 Oye, France - Fanö, Denmark
1873 Skagen, Denmark - Marstrand, Sweden
Captain I.A. Fisk

Kilia (Sile), Turkey - Odessa, Ukraine

Cableships Index Page

Last revised: 8 September, 2015

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