Wire Work

In 1897, con artist Soapy Smith opened a telegraph office in Skagway, Alaska. For five dollars, new arrivals in the Klondike Gold Rush could send 10 words to loved ones anywhere in the world, informing them of their safe arrival and imminent riches.

No one noticed that the cable was simply nailed to the back of the building, and that its other end disappeared in the waters of Skagway Bay.

Telegraph lines did not reach Skagway until 1901.