An exhibition commemorating the life and times of Captain Robert Halpin, the celebrated ship’s master from Wicklow Town, formally opened at the National Maritime Museum in April 2022. The present world of virtually instant communication is often taken for granted. Yet in the early 19th Century the reality was totally different. It was a question of “out of sight, out of mind”, particularly in relation to keeping in touch with America, Australia and the Far East. The advent of steamships, underwater communication cables and towards the end of the century radio changed all this. As regards the laying of the underwater communication cables, Halpin and his vessel the ‘Great Eastern’ were the doyens in their respective fields, a story which is illustrated in this exhibition.