From The Daily Morning Astorian, Thursday, Nov. 7, 1889: "Astoria is now in instant communication with the surrounding points of Alderbrook, Fort Stevens, Ilwaco and Chinook. A cable will soon connect it with Tillamook Rock."
In January 1889, the vice admiral of the Navy wrote to the Treasury Department requesting an appropriation of $6,000 (about $167,000 now) to install the telegraph cable to Fort Stevens for several compelling reasons:
Tillamook Rock had no way to communicate with shore except via the lighthouse tender (which arrived every four to six weeks, weather depending); distress signals from the rock might not be seen for days; with telegraph, the lighthouse could notify the bar pilots and tugs of incoming ships; and time and money would be saved because the tender checkup trips would no longer be needed. (bit.ly/tillywire)