Merrett Notes

Scope and Content

Notes and diagrams made by John Waldo Emerson Merrett, relating to training as a signal engineer for a cable company, [1925]. Written on Valentia Island, Co. Kerry, Ireland.

Administrative / Biographical History

Valentia was the eastern terminal of the first commercially viable transatlantic telegraph cable. The first attempt in 1857 to land a cable from Ballycarbery Strand on the mainland just east of Valentia Island ended in disappointment. Subsequent failures of cables landed at Knightstown in 1858 and Foilhommerum Bay in 1865 finally resulted in commercially viable transatlantic telegraph communications from Foilhommerum Bay in 1866. Transatlantic telegraph cables operated from Valentia Island for one hundred years until Western Union International terminated its cable operations in 1966.

Access Information


The papers are available subject to the usual conditions of access to Archives and Manuscripts material, after the completion of a Reader's Undertaking.

Acquisition Information

Presented by Mr J W Emerson Merrett, former member of UCL Library staff, Jan 1986.

Other Finding Aids

Collection level description