“The Commercial Pacific Cable Company was formed by a collaboration of the Commercial Cable Company, the Great Northern Telegraph Company, and the Eastern Telegraph Company, with the goal of laying a cable across the Pacific Ocean from America’s west coast.
“Founded in 1901, the company provided the first direct telegraph route from America to the Philippines, China, and Japan. Prior to this, messages had to travel across the Atlantic to the Far East via Capetown and the Indian Ocean, or via London to Russia, then across the Russian landline to Vladivostock, then by submarine cable to Japan and the Philippines.
“The first and most significant section of the cable was laid in 1902 from San Francisco to Honolulu by its cableship Silvertown. The landing of the cable at Ocean Beach, San Francisco, adjacent to the Cliff House, was quite the event, with a large crowd, numerous dignitaries, and a brass band.
“The section of the cable from San Francisco to Honolulu was opened to traffic on December 26th, 1902. Then between 1903 to 1906 submarine cables were laid from Honolulu to Midway, Midway to Guam, and Guam to Manila with a tangent link laid from Guam to Tokyo via the Bonin Islands.”
– History of the Atlantic Cable & Undersea Communications