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

Memorabilia & Ephemera
Miscellaneous 19th century cable section souvenirs

Souvenirs made from the 1858 Atlantic cable are by far the most common, but later cables were also made into a variety of decorative items - watch fobs, charms, brooches, pendants, and mounted sections. This page shows a variety of these later items; all are to the same scale.


25mm diameter
Gutta percha or
hard rubber mount

39mm diameter
stone mount


The two examples above each have a seven-strand (six around one) copper conductor, typical of most cables from the 1850s and 1860s (and quite a few later ones). The pendant on the left has larger diameter wires than the brooch on the right, although both have 17 steel armoring wires and the overall cable diameter is the same in each case, at 17mm.

33mm diameter
Silver cable-twist mount

This pendant includes a deep-sea section of the 1865 Atlantic cable, with a seven-strand (six around one) conductor. This was the first cable to use widely separated armoring wires; this design was also used for the 1866 Atlantic cable and one or two others.

22mm diameter
Gutta percha or
hard rubber mount

36mm wide
Gutta percha or
hard rubber mount


19mm diameter
Brass mount

These three examples all include a cable section of similar construction: a large center conductor with ten smaller wires around it, and 24 steel armoring wires, overall cable diameter about 11mm.
This ten-around-one design is typical of cables first made in the 1870s by Siemens Brothers in London.

Probably gutta percha mount
Same conductor design as the three examples above, but with 15 armouring wires. Overall cable diameter about 11mm.
Image courtesy of Lesley Garbutt, whose grandfather Samuel Sellers worked at W.T. Henley's from 1896 until 1947

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Last revised: 9 March, 2023

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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: