Carsten Borchgrevink and the Southern Cross Expedition, 1898-1900: Riffenburgh, Beau & Geir Kløver
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Carsten Borchgrevink and the Southern Cross Expedition, 1898-1900

Author(s): Riffenburgh, Beau & Geir Kløver

Copyright: 2017, Norway
Specifications: 1st, square 8vo, pp.232, 14 color & 122 bw photos, 1 color & 3 bw illus, 4 color & 2 bw maps, plan, appendices, wraps
Condition: new

The story of Carsten Borchgrevink's Southern Cross expedition of 1898-1900 and is aftermath. Against all odds, and being opposed by Sir Clements Markham, the president of the Royal Geographical Society, Borchgrevink managed to get his expedition fully financed by the wealthy British publisher Sir George Newnes. Although the expedition sailed under a British flag and was called he British Antarctic Expedition, only five of the crew were not Norwegian.

The Southern Cross expedition was the first to winter on the Antarctic mainland. Its members brought home important scientific data, made the first sledging journeys with dogs in Antarctica, proved it was possible to land on the Great Barrier, and even set a farthest south record after a short skiing journey on the Barrier. Yet, Borchgrevink and the story of his expedition are practically unknown outside the limited circle of Antarctic enthusiasts.

The expedition was not harmonious. Borchgrevink was criticised for poor leadership and for ignoring the work completed by the scientists during the expedition. Important notebooks and samples were lost or given away on the return journey. This book includes a number of personal letters and newspaper articles that shed light on the aftermath of the expedition and explains why it took 30 years before Borchgrevink received his well-deserved honours from the Royal Geographical Society.

The book contains numerous excerpts from previously unpublished diaries and letters written during the expedition. It is illustrated with more than 100 original photos, maps, and newspaper articles. The acrimonious letters between Borchgrevink and Captain William Colbeck after the expedition make fascinating reading. It is a good thing they did not have Twitter!

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