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The 'Great Eastern' as a cable laying ship
The Great Eastern was a giant steam ship designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-59). When she was launched at Millwall in 1858 she was the largest ship in the world. Although the design of the Great Eastern was groundbreaking, Brunel's mighty vessel was considered a commercial failure as a passenger liner.
This next stage of her career was by far the most successful. From 1865 to 1872 she laid four telegraph cables under the Atlantic, and others to link Bombay and Aden.
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