The word telegraphy comes from the Greek words ‘tele’ (meaning at a distance) and ‘graphein’ (meaning to write).
Telegraphy is the long-distance transmission of textual/symbolic messages (as opposed to verbal or audio messages), without physical exchange of an object bearing the message.
Therefore Semaphore is a method of telegraphy, whereas pigeon post is not. Telegraphy requires that the method used for encoding the message be known to both sender and receiver.
An electric telegraph is a telegraph that uses electrical signals, usually conveyed via dedicated telecommunication lines or radio.
Within the presentation box are two sections of the Dover to Calais telegraph cable, originally laid in 1851, and made by the company R S Newall.
An accompanying plaque says, ‘The cable was laid between Dover and Calais in September 1851 from HMS Blazer piloted by HMS Fearless, Captain F Bullock RN. This piece was picked up after many years submersion during repairing operations’.
A Dover to Calais cable had been laid in 1850, the world’s first submarine cable. However, when the cable was connected to the French shore-end it failed due to a break in the circuit.