Polar Explorers

Meet the Legends of Antarctic Exploration

General (R) Javier Lopetegui Torres

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

General (R) Javier Lopetegui Torres spent more than 35 years immersed in Antarctic matters. Don Javier was a quiet and modest man. One might never suspect that he was responsible for furthering Chilean science deep in Antarctica and in many ways for the very existence of ALE. In the early 1980’s, Lopetegui, a former pilot and Antarctic [...]

Dr. Alexander Macklin

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Dr. Alexander Macklin was one of two surgeons on Ernest Shackleton’s Imperial Trans-Antarctic (Endurance) Expedition 1914-1917. He also joined Shackleton on his final expedition aboard the Quest from 1921-22. Early Life Alexander Macklin was born in India, where his father was a doctor. The family returned home to England and settled in the Scilly Isles, [...]

Sir Douglas Mawson

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Douglas Mawson is one of Australia’s best-known Antarctic explorers. Born in England but raised in Australia, he gained degrees in mining engineering and geology and became a lecturer in minerology and petrology at the University of Adelaide in 1906. He explored particularly hostile regions of East Antarctica, and contributed much to scientific understanding of the [...]

Xavier Mertz

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Xavier Mertz was a Swiss explorer from Basel. He took part in the Far Eastern Party, a 1912–13 sledging journey of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE), which claimed his life. The Mertz Glacier is named after him. As a young man, Mertz studied law and science, specialising in glacier and mountain formations. Mertz was an [...]

Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Chester William Nimitz, Sr. was a fleet admiral of the United States Navy. As Chief of Naval Operations 1945-47, Nimitz was instrumental in the approval and deployment of the Operation Highjump, the largest Antarctic expedition ever organized. Naval Career and World War II Nimitz was appointed to the Navy in 1901 and served in both [...]

Nils Otto Nordenskjöld

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Otto Nordenskjöld, a Swedish geologist and academic, came from a prominent family of scientists, explorers and humanitarians. He was one of the first geographers with a scholarly background to explore and research in Antarctica.

Captain Lawrence "Titus" Oates

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Captain Lawrence “Titus” Oates was a British army officer, and later an Antarctic explorer, who accompanied Captain Robert Scott to the South Pole during the Terra Nova Expedition. On the return journey Oates, afflicted with gangrene and frostbite, walked from his tent into a blizzard, hoping to improve his companions’ chances of survival. Early Life [...]

Nathaniel B. Palmer

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Nathaniel B. Palmer was an American seal hunter, explorer, sailing captain, and ship designer, after whom Palmer Land, a stretch of western Antarctic coast and islands, is named. Sealing and Antarctic Discoveries Young Nat played in his father’s Stonington, CT shipyard, went to sea at the age of 14, and by age 16 was in [...]

Herbert Ponting

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Herbert Ponting was a professional photographer and pioneer of modern polar photography. He is best known as the expedition photographer and cinematographer for Robert Falcon Scott’s Terra Nova Expedition to the Ross Sea and South Pole (1910–1913). In this role, he captured some of the most enduring images of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. [...]

Edith “Jackie” Ronne

Posted  08/28/10 in Antarctic History, Polar Explorers

Jackie Ronne was the first American woman to set foot on Antarctica. She and Jennie Darlington were the first women to overwinter in Antarctica, as members of the Ronne Antarctic Research Expedition (RARE).

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