pt

parcialmente nublado
22°
parcialmente nublado
vento ESE 11 nós
humidade 83%

Submarine Cables

If we stop to think that today almost everyone has their own cell phone and their own computer, among other network communication equipment, we should also stop to question how communication has evolved. From smoke signals to carrier pigeons, from lighthouses to… electricity! And then everything changes, speeds up and the world enters the era of globalization.

The city of Horta, which is strategically located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, has played a vital role in the history of communication. Because of the submarine cables “tied” to Horta, transmitting messages through electric impulses, the city became a world center of communication reception and transmission and even a pioneer as regards communication between the European and the American continents.

The first cable became operational on 1893, connecting Carcavelos to Horta, and from then on several cables were connected. In 1928 there were fifteen submarine telegraph cables in Horta connected to England, the USA, Canada, Ireland, France Cape Verde, Italy and Germany. This turned Horta into one of the largest communication centers in the planet, therefore bringing the world closer together and globalizing all kinds of information, but mainly weather, naval and war-related, and particularly useful during the two World Wars.

German, English and American telegraph companies decided to establish headquarters in Horta, where they stayed for six decades, naturally influencing the social, cultural and sports life of the local community. Different languages were taught and spoken. Orchestras were created which performed regularly. Jazz became a favorite. Sports clubs were founded and new sports appeared, such as rowing, sailing, water polo, tennis or football. Horta soon became a cosmopolitan city, full of life, where inevitably foreign workers got married to young ladies from Faial.

The last foreign company of submarine telegraph cables closed in 1969 given the system’s clear obsolescence. From that time still remain some imposing buildings, such as the Trinity House, so-called because it used to house all three companies, as well as administrative and residential neighborhoods, namely the German Colony (still called “Colónia Alemã”), which today is owned by the Regional Government, and the facilities of the North-American company Western Union, which is currently the Faial Resort Hotel.

Progress is in fact unstoppable and history repeats itself. Telegraph cables were replaced by axial cables and, from 1998 onwards, by the prodigy of fiber optic cables.