Polar Explorers

Meet the Legends of Antarctic Exploration

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).

Sir James Clark Ross

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Sir James Clark Ross was a British naval officer who carried out important magnetic surveys in the Arctic and Antarctic and who discovered the Ross Sea and the Victoria Land region of Antarctica. Early Life and Arctic Voyages Ross joined the navy at age 11 under the tutelage of his uncle Sir John Ross. He [...]

Captain Robert Falcon Scott

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Robert F. Scott was a British Royal Navy officer and explorer who led two expeditions to the Antarctic regions: the Discovery Expedition (1901–1904) and the ill-fated Terra Nova Expedition (1910–1913). On the first Antarctic expedition, Scott set a new southern record by marching to latitude 82°S and discovered the Polar (Antarctic) Plateau, on which the [...]

Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Ernest Shackleton was one of the most celebrated explorers of the Heroic Age. He led the 1907-09 Nimrod Antarctic expedition, which pioneered a route to the South Pole and reached latitude 88° 23'. His return to Antarctica in 1914 was intended to achieve the first trans-Antarctic crossing, but instead resulted in a dramatic story of [...]

Nobu Shirase

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Nobu Shirase was inspired by the tales of Franklin’s search for the Northwest Passage and had a life-long passion for polar exploration. He hoped to be first to the North Pole, but his plans were de-railed by Cook’s and Peary’s announcements in 1909, causing him, like Amundsen, to turn his sights southward. Thus he came [...]

Harald Sverdrup

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Harald Sverdrup was a Norwegian oceanographer, meteorologist and arctic explorer. He is widely recognized as the founder of the modern school of physical oceanography; was the chief scientist on Amundsen’s 1918-25 Arctic Expedition; and was the first head of the Norwegian Polar Institute. Early Life and Arctic Exploration Sverdrup was born on November 15, 1888, [...]

Dr. Charles Swithinbank

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Dr Charles Swithinbank was an extraordinary man and a great mentor to ALE. Born in Burma (Myanmar) and raised by an adventurous mother who admonished him not to ‘get stuck in a desk job’, he first traveled to Antarctica as assistant glaciologist with the Norwegian-British-Swedish Antarctic Expedition 1949-52. Thus began a career that spanned more [...]

Edward Wilson

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Edward A. Wilson was an English physician, polar explorer, natural historian, painter and ornithologist, who accompanied Captain Robert Falcon Scott to the South Pole in 1911, and died with him on the return journey. Early Years and Education Dr. Edward Adrian Wilson was born in Cheltenham, UK on July 23, 1872. By the age of [...]

Captain Frank Worsley

Posted  08/28/10 in Polar Explorers

Captain Frank Arthur Worsley (1872-1943) New Zealander Frank Worsley captained the Endurance during Sir Ernest Shackleton’s Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition. He is best remembered for navigating the expedition party to safety after the Endurance was crushed by ice floes in the Weddell Sea. Worsley also took part in Shackleton’s final expedition to the Antarctic in 1922. [...]

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