A dose of strange history via BLDGBLOG:
Project Sanguine was a U.S. Navy program from the 1980s that “would have involved 41 percent of Wisconsin,” turning that state into a giant “antenna farm” capable of communicating with what Wikipedia calls “deeply-submerged submarines.”
Each individual antenna would have been “buried five feet deep” in the fertile soil of the Cheese State, creating a networked system with nearly 6,000 miles’ worth of cables and receiving stations. The Navy was hoping, we read, for a system “that could transmit tactical orders one-way to U.S. nuclear submarines anywhere in the world, and survive a direct nuclear attack.” In other words, the bedrock of the Earth itself could be turned into a colossal radio station.
The project was controversial from the start and was attacked by politicians, antiwar and environmental groups concerned about the effects of high ground currents and electromagnetic fields on the environment. The Navy [ultimately] abandoned Sanguine. A similar system, installed for preliminary tests in North Carolina and Virginia, “apparently flickered lightbulbs in the area and caused spurious ringing of telephones.”