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Pacific Postal Telegraph Cable Company

The history of the Pacific Postal Telegraph Cable Company is simple. When Mr. John W. Mackay, the famous Bonanza millionaire, and Mr. James Gordon Bennett, of the N. Y. Herald, associated themselves together for the purpose of building the “Commercial” cable across the Atlantic, they readily recognized the fact that the “Field” cable was operated in conjunction with the Western Union lines, and that a rival cable must be fed by friendly inland lines. Of course, where a direct message was sent—say from London to San Francisco—the Western Union Company, as a common carrier, was obliged to accept it from the “Commercial” Cable Company, but at the same time such business was subjected to delays and inconveniences, which would soon be ruinous. In order to overcome this difficulty, Mr. John W. Mackay resolved to organize the Pacific Postal Telegraph Cable Co., and to endow it with appliances and resources which would enable it to compete with any and all existing lines.

The affairs of the new company were at this time placed in the hands of Mr. Henry Rosener, one of the Directors of the Commercial Cable Company, and an old-time friend of Mr. Mackay. Parenthetically, it may be remarked that Mr. Mackay and Mr. Rosener became acquainted during the Washoe excitement, when the latter was engaged in business in Virginia City, and the former was laying the foundations of the great fortune he now possesses, and a warm friendship was subsisted between the two gentlemen ever since. Events, however, have demonstrated that Mr. Rosener had other qualifications for this high trust besides Mr. Mackay’s friendship. The demonstration is, so to speak, ocular. It is found in the wonderful way in which the Company has succeeded in the face of the opposition of the Western Union monopoly. A vast system has been organized, which represents a perfect network of wires, extending from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean, where it meets the Mackay and Bennett Cable, and through it is united to the telegraphic system of the world. The Pacific Postal Telegraph Cable Co.’s system is now completed, and in a few days the doors of its offices, which are located in the Nevada Block, will be opened for business. The system has been built with the greatest care and of the very best materials. The Company had ample financial backing, and Mr. Rosener wisely resolved to equip his lines with very modern improvement, and so be in a position to render the public a quicker and in every respect better service than the Western Union could. It is upon this basis that battle is about to be fought. The Pacific Postal Telegraph Cable Co., with its strong new wires and improved instruments, will be able to carry messages through all kinds of weather with the utmost celerity. There will be little or none of those annoying break-downs, which so often interfere with the transaction of business. The lines have for a starter two number six and two number ten hard-drawn copper wires all the way through from the Pacific to the Atlantic coasts, and these wires, when operated in conjunction with the improved instruments with which the Company has furnished its offices, will be capable of doing as much work as sixteen ordinary wires.

That the business world will rally to the support of the new enterprise goes without saying, because it will furnish a better and fresher service than its rival ever did. Its very existence will destroy a monopoly which most people have regarded as exceptionally overbearing and cruelly exacting. For this reason, if for no other, the business world should see to it that the Pacific Postal Telegraph Cable Company be liberally patronized.

San Francisco News Letter and California Advertiser
February 19, 1887