The Telegraph Field in County Kerry, Ireland, from which the first successful transatlantic cable was laid in 1866, is up for sale at a guide price of €160,000. The 1.01 acre (0.41 hectare) coastal site is located on Valentia Island with beautiful views of Foilhommerum Bay and the Skellig rocks, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It includes the ruin of the 150-year-old Anglo American Cable House making it an ideal site for a cultural center with global significance. The property is being sold by international real estate advisor Savills, on behalf of a private Irish investor.
Peter O’Meara, investment director of Savills Ireland, says: “The Telegraph Field is the birthplace of global communications, one of history’s game-changing moments equivalent to the invention of the internet. The site would be ideal as a tourist destination and the island is a one-hour drive from Kerry Airport, linked to the mainland by both bridge and ferry.”
Brunel’s Great Eastern steamship carried the first successful transatlantic cable to its terminus in Hearts Content, Newfoundland 2,300 nautical miles away. The old and new worlds synched in communication in July 1866 and New York’s Broadway was lit up by fireworks in celebration. The occasion is commemorated on the dome of the rotunda in Capitol Hill, Washington DC, amongst five other momentous historical events.
Junior Browne, who owns the property and researched the site’s history with his son over the last 10 years, comments: “We bought the site intending to build a holiday home in a stunning setting but as we uncovered the historic significance of the site we abandoned these plans. We have since funded a documentary and progressed plans for a visitor’s center, a museum and a global IT learning center. We have had support from the national tourist agency, global corporations like Morgan Stanley and even the Smithsonian Museum, which has long recognized the importance of the transatlantic cable, but we have taken the project as far as we can.”