Made of a 5mm copper wire 'core' wrapped in a protective casing of tar, hemp and steel this short section of the first Transatlantic Telegraph Cable was salvaged from the ocean floor off the west coast of Ireland in 2003. It had lain there disused (and superceded by many successive cables) for 137 years. The company that laid it no longer exists and it is the sole property of the salvager.
The cable ran between Valencia Island on the west coast of Ireland to Heart's Content in Newfoundland. Its installation revolutionised communications between Europe and North America. Through it morse code messages crossed the Atlantic in seconds where before communications had taken weeks by ship. It changed the world of business forever - now stocks and shares could be traded within hours instead of weeks.
As a filmmaker I'm fascinated by this first intercontinental communications revolution, continually upgraded by successive generations (today we have satellite) When I hold it my imagination is set alight by the ghosts of the millions of forgotten messages that this thin strand of metal carried between cultures, communities, families and friends.