Escher.gif (426 bytes)

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

CS Tyrian
by Bill Glover

Official Number 60459

Built in 1869 by Duncan and Company, Port Glasgow

Length  237.5 ft  Breadth 30.2 ft  Depth 19.9 ft  Gross tonnage 1039

SS Tyrian at St John, New Brunswick in 1876

Built as a commercial trading vessel owned initially by the Anchor Line and used on runs from Glasgow to New York via the Mediterranean. Sold to Archibald Colvil on 26 January  1893. Subsequently sold to the Canadian Government in 1902 and converted for cable work.

In September 1909 Tyrian, under Captain Dickson, carried "a score of reporters" waiting for news of Peary's Arctic Expedition of that year, and met Peary on his return [New York Times, 20 September 1909].

In 1917 Tyrian was at Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the day of the great explosion which destroyed the French Cable Wharf .

The ship remained in service until 1935, when she was broken up.

Site visitor Bill McDonald identifies the man third from the left in the back row as his great-grandfather, Alexander Bernard McDonald, who was chief electrical engineer.
One of the other officers in this photograph is Alexander Anderson, Engineer. If you can identify him or any of the other men in this photograph taken on board Tyrian (undated, but probably early 1900s), please email me

Cableships Index Page

Last revised: 23 September, 2016

Return to Atlantic Cable main page

Search all pages on the Atlantic Cable site:

Research Material Needed

The Atlantic Cable website is non-commercial, and its mission is to make available on line as much information as possible.

You can help - if you have cable material, old or new, please contact me. Cable samples, instruments, documents, brochures, souvenir books, photographs, family stories, all are valuable to researchers and historians.

If you have any cable-related items that you could photograph, copy, scan, loan, or sell, please email me: [email protected]

—Bill Burns, publisher and webmaster: