Catalogue description Records of Cable and Wireless

This record is held by Cable & Wireless Archive

Details of CWA
Reference: CWA
Title: Records of Cable and Wireless

The archive includes a wide range of historic material relating to the development of international communications business and technology, dating from the 1850's to the present day. The main period covered by the collection is c1850 - c1970.


Corporate Records: Copies of agreements, reports and accounts, minutes, letter books from the pioneering Victorian telegraph and from Imperial and International Communications Limited (1929-1934) and Cable & Wireless (from 1934).


Staff records: Staff ledgers dating back to the 1860's, often with details of pay scales. Also staff handbooks and rules and regulations


Financial Records: Accounting information from many companies in the Cable & Wireless family.


Press Cuttings and Releases: Cuttings dating back to the 1850's on various aspects of international telecommunications, including advertisements. Press releases from the 1980's.


Brochures and Sales Records: A wide selection of brochures, promotional literature and commemorative publications.


Photographs: Photographs illustrating many major and minor events in the history of telecommunications. Also photographs of ships, premises and people.


Film and Video: A good selection of films describing aspects of telecommunications from the 1940's to the present.


Maps: Maps which trace the evolution of the British world communications network from the 1850's to the 1990's


Maritime Records: Extensive information on cableships, nautical charts and engineers reports on the laying of cables.


Telegrams: A collection of decorative telegram forms from around the world.


Magazines and Periodicals: A complete run of The Zodiac, the staff magazine started in 1906 and its successors to the present day and other journals.


Books: A good reference collection covering the history of telecommunications including many early and rare books

Date: c1850-c1970
Held by: Cable & Wireless Archive, not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Cable and Wireless

Physical description: 244 subfonds
Administrative / biographical background:

Cable & Wireless can trace its origins back to the 1860s and the early days of international telecommunications. Over the years, many of the records of the business have been preserved and today they are accessible in the archive. Housed in one of Porthcurno's former telegraph station buildings at the Porthcurno Telegraph Museum, the archive is a unique resource for the history of cable communications, the company and the people who have worked for it over the years.

Link to NRA Record:

Have you found an error with this catalogue description?

Help with your research