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Today, we take for granted the ability to send photos halfway around the world in an instant. (Which is probably why that popular smartphone photograph service is called Instant-Gram™.) But a century ago, getting a photograph across an ocean was a much more involved process than simply snapping a mirror selfie and publishing it to 3,000 of your closest friends.
In the early morning of January 24, 1926 an American oceanliner called the S.S. President Roosevelt was carrying 200 passengers bound for Germany. The Roosevelt received a distress call in the Atlantic Ocean, and the decision was made to go in search of its origins. The call was coming from the S.S. Antinoe, a British freighter ship which had gotten caught up in terrible weather and was on the verge of sinking. The rescue of the crew took three and a half days, and two men died during the effort. But the rest of the crew (including the captain) were saved, and brought aboard the S.S. President Roosevelt for an their unscheduled detour to Germany.
As it happens, during the rescue someone on the S.S. President Roosevelt snapped a photo of the sinking Antinoe. Soon after, that same image would be seen in newspapers across the United States. But how did the photograph get from the London to New York City before the existence of things like satellites, smartphones and transatlantic fiber optic cables? 

How To Send a Photo Around the World (in 1926) High-res

Today, we take for granted the ability to send photos halfway around the world in an instant. (Which is probably why that popular smartphone photograph service is called Instant-Gram™.) But a century ago, getting a photograph across an ocean was a much more involved process than simply snapping a mirror selfie and publishing it to 3,000 of your closest friends.

In the early morning of January 24, 1926 an American oceanliner called the S.S. President Roosevelt was carrying 200 passengers bound for Germany. The Roosevelt received a distress call in the Atlantic Ocean, and the decision was made to go in search of its origins. The call was coming from the S.S. Antinoe, a British freighter ship which had gotten caught up in terrible weather and was on the verge of sinking. The rescue of the crew took three and a half days, and two men died during the effort. But the rest of the crew (including the captain) were saved, and brought aboard the S.S. President Roosevelt for an their unscheduled detour to Germany.

As it happens, during the rescue someone on the S.S. President Roosevelt snapped a photo of the sinking Antinoe. Soon after, that same image would be seen in newspapers across the United States. But how did the photograph get from the London to New York City before the existence of things like satellites, smartphones and transatlantic fiber optic cables?

How To Send a Photo Around the World (in 1926)

  • Source Gizmodo