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August 7, 2001
(Tourism, Culture and Recreation)


NOTE TO EDITORS: Opening reception, Cape Race Wireless Telegraph Station, August 10, Cape Race (only land-based station to pick up Titanic's distress call)

Kevin Aylward, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Recreation, invites the media to the opening reception celebrating the Cape Race Wireless Telegraph Station as a Receiving the World Communications site. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador will be represented by Roland Butler, MHA-Port de Grave. Bill Matthews, MP, Burin–St. George's, will represent the Government of Canada. The reception begins at 1:00 p.m., Friday, August 10, 2001, at the Cape Race Wireless Telegraph Station, Cape Race, Newfoundland.

Cape Race Wireless Telegraph Station
A hard, black shoulder of shale. Waters noted for treacherous currents and rogue waves. Shipwreck after shipwreck. This is Cape Race.

The site of one of the first Marconi wireless stations in Newfoundland. A vital link in the transmission of local and international news. An invaluable aid to mariners. This is Cape Race's communications heritage.

Historically, the two went hand in hand. Cape Race forms the southeast corner of the island of Newfoundland, close to the traditional steaming route for ships crossing between Europe and North America. In 1856, it was connected over land to the North American telegraph system. Together, these factors (plus its firmly established relationship with marine disaster) made Cape Race a logical, essential place to build a Marconi wireless station.

For more than 60 years, the station by the famous lighthouse played a vital role in marine and North American communications. Notably, it was the only land-based station to hear the distress call from the "unsinkable" R. M. S. Titanic, which it relayed to nearby ships and to an unbelieving world.

With its newly built 1909 Marconi telegraph station, historic lighthouse, and unchanged rough-hewn natural beauty, Cape Race today is a place like no other.

Media contact: Mary MacNab, Communications, Special Celebrations, (709) 729-3813. 

2001 08 07                                                     3:00 p.m.

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