Telecommunications Visions from the Past
North Sydney Museum
North Sydney, Nova Scotia
2 - The Newfoundland Connection
1Crewmembers of the C.S. Colonia split a cable to divert the line to Bay Roberts.
Bay Roberts NF
2The crew of the cable-ship C.S. Colonia was charged with laying the Anglo-American Transatlantic Cable between England and Canada.
This picture shows where the crew members of the C.S. Colonia split a previous cable to divert the line to Bay Roberts in Newfoundland.
3Picture of deck of cable ship Colonia showing grapnels used to split cable.
Cable Ship Colonia
6In 1913, an overland section of the Anglo-American Transatlantic cable was laid from Bay Roberts, Newfoundland to Colinet in St. Mary's Bay, Newfoundland.
8As St. Mary's Bay was too shallow for the C.S. Colonia to enter, Western Union contracted the smaller ship S.S. Baleine to lay cable in the bay.
Here we see workers transporting cable from the S. S. Baleine to the cable ship, Colonia.
9Workers performing the dangerous task of transferring the cable.
Workers S.S. Baleine North Sydney, NS
10After the S.S. Baleine crew laid the cable in the shallow waters of St. Mary's Bay, Newfoundland, the C.S. Colonia completed its own task. It was the latter crew that laid the remaining cable from St. Mary's Bay to Lloyd's Cove in Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia.
During this process workers often performed dangerous tasks with little or no protection.
12After laying the cable, the crew of the Colonia sailed to Lloyd's Cove, Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia.
14Upon their arrival in Sydney Mines, workers aboard the C.S. Colonia used barrels as floatation devices to move the cable ashore.
17The cable was then laid along deep trenches by using cable rollers. Workers wound the length of the cable along the rollers to move it more easily.
Adjacent is the cable roller used during the transfer of cable from Lloyd's Cove to the Western Union Office on Court Street, North Sydney, Nova Scotia, a distance of 3 miles.
19The Western Union had succeeded in diverting its transatlantic cable through Newfoundland to Lloyd's Cove, Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia.
Consequently, all communications originally coming to Canso, Nova Scotia were now diverted to North Sydney.
23Here we see the Cable Hut as it looks in 2004.
25Lloyd's Cove, Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia in 2004.
27Cable Street, Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia was named for the cable that came ashore at Lloyd's Cove.
29The crew of the cable ship C.S. Colonia loaded 2690 tons of coal at piers in North Sydney, Nova Scotia. This was sufficient to allow the ship to remain at sea for eight weeks.
33The Western Union Cable System published its final report regarding the cable installation in 1913. In the general remarks it was stated:
"The general result of the Expedition may be regarded as distinctly satisfactory. The "Colonia" was away 68 days, on only five of which was work interrupted by bad weather. We believe this to be a record for the Atlantic...
'During the Expedition the "Colonia" had effected two deep sea repairs, raised the cable in 2500 fathoms and laid 597 miles of cable for the Diversion to Bay Roberts, laid a new cable between St. Mary's Bay and North Sydney, and picked up a total of 163 N. Miles of old cable off Canso and elsewhere...
'The ship was engaged a total of six days in picking-up [sic] old cable; the cost of this to your Company was 1200 [pounds] and the estimated value of the cable brought back amounts to at least 13000 [pounds]. The recovered cable is in fair condition, and financial results from the employment of the "Colonia" on this work has been quite satisfactory....."
35Final Engineers report for the laying of cable from Colinet, Newfoundland to Lloyd's Cove, Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia.
37Engineer's memorandum that all work was completed on time.
22 December 1913
North Sydney, NS Canada
39In 1903, C.W. Vernon had this to say about the communication industry:
"One of the features which have contributed greatly to the prosperity of North Sydney, Nova Scotia has been the Western Union Cable Office which with Heart's Content, Newfoundland, forms one of the connecting links between Europe and America."
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