Douglas Mawson’s Antarctic Bases: Cape Denison, Macquarie Island, and the Shackleton Iceshelf: Jensen, David
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Douglas Mawson’s Antarctic Bases: Cape Denison, Macquarie Island, and the Shackleton Iceshelf

Author(s): Jensen, David

Copyright: 2010, Australia
Specifications: 1st, oblong 8vo, pp.72, 52 color & 67 bw photos, 2 maps, photo ep, wraps
Condition: new

A nicely produced book documenting the various huts at Mawson’s three Antarctic bases established during the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE, 1911-14). Mawson's team established three bases – Cape Denison, Macquarie Island, and the Shackleton Iceshelf. The main one was built at Cape Denison, Commonwealth Bay, where in January and February 1912 they built the wooden hut from Oregon and Baltic pine that was to be their home for two years. It was from here that the disaster and heroism of Mawson's far eastern sledging party continues to frame the popular perception of his legendary polar explorations. After the death of his two sledging companions, Dr Xavier Mertz and Lieutenant Belgrave Ninnis, Mawson walked for a month, starving and alone, back to Cape Denison, only to see his ship departing in the distance. The fragile wooden hut where he had to spend a further year with six companions is now a historic site, and is being conserved by the Mawson's Huts Foundation in partnership with the Australian Antarctic Division. The Mawson's Huts Historic Site consists of the main hut, magnetograph house, the transit hut, the ruined absolute magnetic hut and a memorial cross to Ninnis and Mertz, along with a plaque recording the territorial claim Mawson made on his return for one night in 1931.

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