Suspended chains consisting of single noble metal and oxygen atoms have been formed. We provide evidence that oxygen can react with and be incorporated into metallic one-dimensional atomic chains. Oxygen incorporation reinforces the linear bonds in the chain, which facilitates the creation of longer atomic chains. The mechanical and electrical properties of these diatomic chains have been investigated by determining local vibration modes of the chain and by measuring the dependence of the average chain-conductance on the length of the chain. Additionally, we have performed calculations that give insight into the physical mechanism of the oxygen-induced strengthening of the linear bonds and the conductance of the metal–oxygen chains.