Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Martin Frobisher (1577) - John...
 Henry Hudson (1609) - William Baffin...
 William Barentz (1596)
 V. Behring and Behring Strait...
 Ross - Parry - Back - Richardson...
 The search for Franklin - Dr. Kane...
 Dr. Hayes (1860 and 1869)
 The German expedition (1869-18...
 The "Polaris" expedition (1864...
 The search for the "Polaris"
 The English expedition of 1875...
 Discoveries of the "Tegetthoff"...
 Northeast passage - The "Vega"...
 Voyage of the "Jeanette" (1879...
 Lieutenant Greely, and the Franklin...
 Nansen (1884) and Peary (1891)
 Antarctic expeditions
 Captain Wilkes (1840)
 Captain Sir James Ross (1840-1...
 Back Cover

Group Title: Great Arctic travellers : a comprehensive summary of Arctic and Antarctic discovery, and adventure
Title: Great Arctic travellers
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00081087/00001
 Material Information
Title: Great Arctic travellers a comprehensive summary of Arctic and Antarctic discovery, and adventure
Physical Description: iv, 181 p., 1 leaf of plates : ill., port ; 25 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Craig, Hugh
George Routledge and Sons ( Publisher )
Publisher: George Routledge and Sons
Place of Publication: New York ;
London ;
Glasgow ;
Publication Date: c1891
Subject: Explorers -- Biography -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Adventure and adventurers -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Voyages and travels -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Sailing -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Seafaring life -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Animals -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Natural history -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Juvenile literature -- Polar regions   ( lcsh )
Publishers' advertisements -- 1891   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1891
Genre: Publishers' advertisements   ( rbgenr )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: United States -- New York -- New York
England -- London
Scotland -- Glasgow
England -- Manchester
Statement of Responsibility: by Hugh Craig ; with portraits and other illustrations.
General Note: Some illustrations engraved by Dalziel.
General Note: Publisher's advertisements precedes text.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00081087
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002223332
notis - ALG3581
oclc - 05312158
lccn - 79311118

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Title Page
        Page i
        Page ii
        Page iii
        Page iv
        Page v
        Page vi
        Page vii
        Page viii
    Table of Contents
        Page ix
        Page x
    Martin Frobisher (1577) - John Davis (1585)
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
    Henry Hudson (1609) - William Baffin (1616)
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
    William Barentz (1596)
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
    V. Behring and Behring Strait (1728)
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
    Ross - Parry - Back - Richardson - Franklin - The search for Franklin
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
    The search for Franklin - Dr. Kane (1852)
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
    Dr. Hayes (1860 and 1869)
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
    The German expedition (1869-1870)
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
    The "Polaris" expedition (1864)
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
    The search for the "Polaris"
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
    The English expedition of 1875 - The "Alert" and "Discovery"
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
    Discoveries of the "Tegetthoff" (1872-1874)
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
    Northeast passage - The "Vega" (1878-1879)
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
    Voyage of the "Jeanette" (1879-1881)
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
    Lieutenant Greely, and the Franklin Bay expedition (1881-1884)
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
    Nansen (1884) and Peary (1891)
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
    Antarctic expeditions
        Page 164
    Captain Wilkes (1840)
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
        Page 173
    Captain Sir James Ross (1840-1843)
        Page 174
        Page 175
        Page 176
        Page 177
        Page 178
        Page 179
        Page 180
        Page 181
        Page 182
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
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Author of Great African Travellers," Etc.




History of the United States.
History of England.
Great African Travellers.
Great Arctic Travellers.
Life of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Out-Door Sports for Boys (and
Each i60 pages, quarto. With numerous
illustrations. Boards, lithographed double
cover, each, 75 cents.



ON E o( the most distinct and easily seen groups
of tjar. is that which is sometimes called in this
country The Dipper," but more commonly here
and in Europe is known as the "Great Bear."
Its well-defined form, and the bright stars which
are seen in it, attracted attention in the earliest
ages. and it was at once noticed that it, alone of
all t he ct h'r groups of stars, never set in the ocean.
It v as further noticed by our primitive ancestors
that n..ar this Great Bear there was another
Smaller croup of stars, just as many in number,
and dlr.':.sed in very nearly the same figure, but
in rev.irs.e position, and that around the brightest
star r-. thri Little Bear the whole firmament seemed
to rev,-'.e. As the Greek word for Bear is
'Ar.'... this region of the sky, in which the fancy
of our earliest forefathers imagined that they
could trrace among the scattered lights that
sparkled there the figures of the Great and Little
.Bear;.. .rwa described as Arctic, and the same word
Arrct.: *.a.;' naturally given to the part of the earth
that -'-ened nearest to the Bear.
.IVelien men learned that the world was a globe or
iihcre, and revolved on its axis, it was seen that if
tlti. axs were long enough to reach the heavens,
lthe n.,rrhe'rn end would pass through one of the
-,4r: in the Little Bear; and as this end of the
'egrth imaginary axis is called The North Pole,
the -t;r which it would touch if prolonged, was
,'h'mad th e Pole-Star. The other end of the
'ia.;inairy axis is called the South Pole, and the
''lrtiin of the globe surrounding it, and the por-
.'n of the heavens above it, receive the name of
,t.:,r.'t., or "opposite to Arctic." On our maps
d plobes there are -as you know-several circles
tawn; the Equator cuts the globe in two in the
'ddle. and each side is a circle parallel to the
uator called a Trofic, and the region of the
the's surface between these circles is commonly


described as tropical, because it is between the
Tropics. Two other circles near the two poles are
likewise drawn on our globes and maps. They are
each distant 23 from their respective poles, and
they are called the Arctic and Antarctic Circles.
Within each of these circles there is a period of
the year when the Sun never sets, and another
period when he is never visible. The nearer you
travel to either pole, the longer is each successive
period, till at the poles themselves a day of six
months is succeeded by a night of six months'
The Arctic Ocean lies to the north of Europe,
Asia, and North America, and surrounds the North
Pole. The influence of the Gulf Stream, however,
creates a comparatively mild climate off the coasts
of Norway, a considerable distance within the
Arctic Circle, while on the other hand, along the
east coast of Greenland, and through Davis
Strait, the Arctic currents bring down the Arctic
conditions, a long way into the Atlantic, some dis-
tance outside the Circle. The Norwegian Sea and
Greenland Sea, lying between Norway and Green-
land, belong to the same basin as the Arctic Ocean,
being cut off from the Atlantic by ridges stretching
between Greenland, Iceland and the Faroe Islands
and the North of Scotland, which have an average
depth of two hundred and forty fathoms over
them. If the Arctic Ocean is considered to lie
wholly within the Arctic Circle, then it is almost
land-locked between that Circle and the parallel of
70o North. It communicates with the Pacific by
Behring Strait, and with the Atlantic through
Davis Strait, and the wide sea between Norway
and Greenland. The area of the Ocean is about
five million five hundred thousand square miles,
and about eight million six hundred thousand
square miles of land drain into it. The rainfall
on this land is estimated at two thousand one


hundred cubic miles a year. The coast of Asia
and Europe are low, and have several deep inden-
tations, the principal being the Gulf of Obi and
the White Sea; whilst the North American shores
are skirted by a most irregular assemblage of
islands, forming numerous gulfs, bays and channels,
the largest being Baffin's Bay. The principal
islands of the Arctic Ocean are Greenland,
Spitzbergen, Franz-Josef Land, Nova Zembla, New
Siberia, Wrangel Island, Melville Island, Banks
Land, Grinnell Land, etc. The principal rivers
from Asia are the Lena, Yenesei and Obi; from
Europe, the Onega, Dwina and Petchora; from
America, the Mackenzie and the Yukon. The
Arctic highlands are covered with enormous
depths of snow and ice, in many places resulting
in the formation of great glaciers, one of the most
remarkable of which is the Humboldt Glacier, in
790 N. latitude, on the west coast of Greenland.
The whole ocean is covered by immense ice-fields,
from five to fifty feet in thickness. These are
bound together, during the winter, by the severe
frost, but break up in summer into floes and floe-
bergs. Sometimes vast sheets of water and long
canals are formed between the floes and ice-fields,
and these have doubtless given rise to the idea of
there being an open sea at the North Pole. When
these enormous ice-fields come into collision in
winter, their margins are piled up one on the top
of the other, and thus produce what are called
hummocky ice-floes. In the more open parts of
the ocean the ice is always moving. Immense
quantities of field and hummocky ice float down
each year between Spitzbergen and Greenland, and
Iceland and Greenland, blocking almost continually
these waters. Whole pine-trees are not uncom-
monly found frozen in this ice, which most proba-
bly, have been carried right across the Pole, after
having been swept into the Arctic Ocean by the
rivers of the two hemispheres. Great fresh-water
ponds and lakes are formed on the ice-fields in
summer by rain and melting snow. This forms
"black ice" when frozen, contrasting strongly with
"white ice" formed from the salt water. The
whalers supply themselves with fresh water by
picking up the "black ice."
Throughout the whole of the Arctic Basin, ice-
cold water is found from surface to bottom,
except off the Norwegian shores, where it is met
with at depths varying from four hundred to six
hundred fathoms beneath the surface. This cold
Arctic water penetrates the Far6e Channel at the
bottom as far as the North of Scotland, where it is

stopped by a ridge running thence to the Farie
Islands; on the north of this ridge, at a depth of
four hundred and five hundred fathoms, there is a
temperature of 30 F.; while at the south side, at
the same depths, the temperature is 45" F. The
width of this ridge is about ten miles, and on it
there is a depth of two hundred and fifty fathoms.
The warm Gulf Stream water passes over this
ridge, and on by the coasts of Norway, rendering
its northern shores and those of Lapland relatively
mild and habitable, the July temperature off the
North Cape being 470 F. The Ocean appears to be
shallow to the north of Europe and Asia, the depth,
five hundred miles to the north of the Lena, being
but thirty-eight fathoms; only seventy-two fathoms
are found at the most northerly point of the
American coast. Between Spitzbergen and Lap-
land the depths are from one hundred to two
hundred fathoms; but between Spitzbergen and
the north of Greenland, there is a deep opening
in the frozen sea, where the depth is two thousand
five hundred fathoms. Between Norway, Iceland
and Greenland the depths are sometimes over two
thousand fathoms, and generally in the central
parts over one thousand fathoms. The depths in
Behring Strait are less than one hundred
fathoms. South-westerly winds prevail along the
Norwegian Coast and as far as Franz-Josef Land;
to the westward of this line, on the American
shores, north-easterly winds prevail. In winter,
winds blow from Northern Asia to the Arctic
Ocean; in summer, from the ocean to the land.
The direction of the winds over the Arctic Ocean
at different seasons is controlled by the positions
of the barometric maxima and minima in the
north parts of Asia and the North Atlantic. Fogs
and mists are of most frequent occurrence during
the six months of day and summer. In winter,
the temperature of the air is sometimes as low as
47* F., and in summer is usually a little above
freezing point.
Such is a brief sketch of what is known at pres-
ent respecting the Arctic regions, and the difficul-
ties that the explorer has to surmount.
In the Ancient World little was known, and
little interest felt in the cold and snow-clad coun-
tries of the North. The Greeks had traditions of
a people dwelling in the far North, whom. they
called Hyperboreans, and who were said to dwell
on the shores of an ocean that encircled the world.
Herodotus, the historian, when he recounts this
story adds that as it involves the assumption, that
the world is round, it need not be seriously dis-


cussed. As long as these views were held by men no
attempts at exploration were made, and not till
the rotundity of the earth was established, were
systematic attempts made to sail around the globe
in the Northern waters. The first veritable voyage
of discovery to explore the unknown lands of the
North was undertaken by a Norwegian named
Othere. He was a bold seaman of an adventurous
disposition, and seems to have travelled far and
wide, and in the course of one of his journeys he
came to England and was received by the famous
King Alfred. It is supposed by some patriotic
souls that Alfred had sent Othere out on his voyage
of discovery. This, however, is improbable, and at
all events is not at all in harmony with the spirit
of those times. Others suppose Othere was a pris-
oner of war captured at the battle of Ashdown;
others content themselves with regarding him as a
visitor. It is enough to know that sometime in
the twenty-five years of King Alfred's reign, that
is, between A.D. 871-896, Othere was in Eng-
land and spun for the King a lot of what seamen
call "yarns." Alfred, who was then engaged in
compiling a History of the World" in the English
tongue, reports at length his interview with Othere.
Longfellow has told the incident in verse, but, as a
curious piece of old-world history, we give the prose
narrative, which was as follows:
"Othere told his lord, King Alfred, that he
dwelt northmost of all the Northmen. He said
that he dwelt in the land to the northward, along
the West Sea; he said, however, that that land is
very long north from thence, but it is all waste,
except in a few places where the Fins at times
dwell, hunting in the winter, and in the summer
fishing in that sea. He said that he was desirous to
try, once on a time, how far that country extended
due north, or whether any one lived to the north
waste. He then went due north along the country,
leaving all the way, the waste land on the right,
and the wide sea on the left. After three days he
was as far north as the whale-hunters go at the
farthest. Then he proceeded in his course due
north, as far as he could sail within another three
days; then the land there inclined due east, or the
sea into the land, he knew not which; but he knew
that he waited there for a west wind or a little
north, and sailed thence eastward along that land
as far as he could sail in four days. Then he had
to wait for a due north wind because the land
inclined there due south, or the sea in on that
land, he knew not which. He then sailed along
the coast due south, as far as he could sail in five

days. There lay a great river up in that land;
they then turned in that river, because they durst
not sail on up the river on account of hostility,
because all that country was inhabited on the
other side of the river. He had not before met
with any land that was inhabited since he left his
own home; but all the way he had waste land on
his right, except some fishermen, fowlers and hun-
ters, all of whom were Fins, and he had constantly
a wide sea to the left."
Othere seems by this account to have reached
the river Dwina in Russia. Then for centuries we
hear nothing of the Northern seas, and six hundred
years had to elapse before Othere found a successor
in Hugh Willoughby, the English sailor of Alfred's
successor, Edward VI, who sailed from London in
1553 in hopes to reach India by a northern route.
There had always been carried to Europe stories
of Indians who had been driven ashore on the
western coasts of that continent. Q. Metellus
Celer, the Roman Governor of Gaul in the year 62
before Christ, received from the King of the Suevi
some Indians, who had been thrown by storms on
the shore of Germany. Pope Pius II in his "Cos-
mography," printed in 1509, writes : I have myself
read that in the time of the German Emperor an
Indian vessel and Indian merchants were driven by
storm to the German coasts. Certain it is they
came from the East, which had not been possible,
if, as many suppose, the North Sea was unnavig-
able and frozen." The Spanish historian Gomara
adds that these Indians stranded at Ltibeck, in
the time of Frederick Barbarossa, who was Emperor
from 1152 to II90. Whatever kind of people these
so-called Indians may have been, such stories kept
alive the belief that India could be reached by a
northern voyage. Now to reach India, the sup-
posed land of gold and diamonds and spices and
all sorts of treasures, was, at the close of the middle
ages, the longing of all adventurous souls. To
reach this fabled storehouse of wealth the Portu-
guese had sailed south along the African coast and
rounded the Cape of Good Hope, and it was with
the hope of finding a more direct passage to the
golden East that Columbus set sail from Spain.
With America discovered by the Spaniards, and
with the Portuguese commanding the road round
Africa, men began to ponder over these old stories
of Indian shipwreck in Germany, and resolved to
seek the land of promise byniew roads. The first
to excite to voyages of discovery in the polar
regions was an Englishman, Robert Morse, who
had lived for a long time at Seville. He urged his


own King, Henry VIII, in 1527 to undertake such
expeditions, as all other countries had been ex-
plored by the Spaniards and Portuguese. He
argued that after reaching the Pole, one could turn
to the East, and first passing the land of the Tar-
tars, get to China, the Indies, the Cape of Good
Hope, and thus circumnavigate the whole world ;"
he also suggested a north-western route by sailing
"along the back of Newfoundland" and returning
by the Straits of Magellan. Either of these routes
would lie beyond the maritime supremacy of Spain
and Portugal, and this is the explanation of the
zeal with which the Dutch and English sent out
vessels to find India and China by the North-west
or North passage. The two famous sailors, John
Cabot and his son Sebastian, had set out from
England and the former discovered Newfoundland
in 1497, and the latter in 1517 reached the expanse
of water now called Hudson's Bay. In 1548 he was
appointed by King Edward VI superintendent of
the Navy, and in 1551 organized in London "The
Association of Merchant Adventurers," and under
its auspices Sir Hugh Willoughby, a brave soldier,
was despatched with a little fleet.
Sir Hugh Willoughby's, in 1553, was thus the
first maritime expedition undertaken on a large
scale, which was sent from England to far distant
seas. The equipment of the vessels was carried
out with great care under the superintendence of
Sebastian Cabot, who also gave the commander
precise instructions how he should behave in the
different incidents of the voyage. Some of these
instructions now indeed appear rather childish, for
instance Article 30: "Item, if you shall see them
[the foreigners met with during the voyage] were
Lyons or Bears skinnes, having long bowes, and
arrowes, be not afraid of that sight; for such be
worne oftentimes more to feare strangers, than for
any other cause," but others might still be used as
rules for every well-ordered exploratory expedition.
Sir Hugh besides obtained from Edward VI an
open letter, written in Latin, Greek, and several
other languages, in which it was stated that dis-
coveries and the making of commercial treaties
were the sole objects of the expedition; and the
people, with whom the expedition might come in
contact, were requested to treat Sir Hugh Will-
oughby as they themselves would wish to be
treated in case they should come to England. So
sanguine were the promoters of the voyage of its
success in reaching the Indian seas by this route,
that they caused the ships that were placed at Sir
Hugh Willoughby's disposal to be sheathed with

lead in order to protect them from the attacks of
teredo and other worms. These vessels were:-(I)
The Buona Esferanza, admiral of the fleet, of one
hundred and twenty tons burden, on board of which
was Sir Hugh Willoughby, himself, as captain-gen-
eral of the fleet. The number of persons in this ship,
including Willoughby, the master of the vessel,
William Gefferson, and six merchants, was thirty-
five. (2) The Edward Bonaventure, of one hun-
dred and sixty tons burden, the command of which
was given to Richard Chancelor, captain and
pilot-major of the fleet. There were on board
this vessel fifty men, including two merchants.
Among the crew whose names are given in Hak-
luyt we find the name of Stephen Burrough, after-
wards renowned in the history of the north-east
passage, and that of Arthur Pet. (3) The Buona
Confidencia, of ninety tons, under command of
Cornelius Durfoorth, with twenty-eight men,
including three merchants. The expense of fit-
ting out the vessels amounted to a sum of
six thousand pounds, divided into shares of
twenty-five pounds. Sir Hugh Willoughby was
chosen commander "both by reason of his
goodly personage (for he was of tall stature) as
also for his singular skill in the services of warre."
In order to ascertain the nature of the lands of
the East, two Tartars" who were employed at the
royal stables were consulted, but without any infor-
mation being obtained from them. The ships left
Ratcliffe (now best known from Ratcliffe Highway
in the east end of London) the 20th of May, 1553.
They were towed down by the boats, "the marin-
ers being appareled in watched or skie coloured
cloth," with a favorable wind to Greenwich,
where the court then was. The king being unwell
could not be present, but "the courtiers came run-
ning out, and the common people flockt together,
standing very thicke upon the share; the Privie
Consel, they lookt out at the windows of the
court, and the rest ran up to the toppes of the
towers; the shippes did hereupon discharge their
ordinance, and shoot off their pieces after the
maner of warre, and of the sea, insomuch that the
tops of the hills sounded therewith, the valleys and
the water gave an echo, and the mariners they
shouted in such sort, that the skie rang again with
the noise thereof." All was joy and triumph; it
seemed as if men foresaw that the greatest mari-
time power the history of the world can show was
that day born.
But alas! for human hopes. The first of Arctic
expeditions was the first of Arctic failures. A storm


struck the little fleet on the coast of Norway and
the Edward Bonaventure was separated from her
companions. It is supposed that the Buona Sper-
anzaandBuona Confidencia touched at Nova Zembla,
and on September 18, put back south and reached
East Lapland. Of the further fate of Sir Hugh
Willoughby and his sixty-two companions, we know
only that during the course of the winter they all
perished, doubtless of scurvy. The journal of the
commander ends with the statement that immedi-
ately after the arrival of the vessel three men were
sent south, south-west, three west, and three south-
east to search if they could find people, but that
they all returned without finding of people,
or any similitude of habitation." The following
year Russian fishermen, found at the wintering
station the ships and dead bodies of those who had
thus perished, together with the journal from which
the extract given above is taken, and a will wit-
nessed by Willoughby, from which it appeared that
he himself and most of the company of the two
ships were alive in January, 1554. The two vessels,
together with Willoughby's corpse, were sent to
England in 1555 by the merchant George Killing-
worth. The third vessel, the EdwardBonaventure,
commanded by Chancelor, had, on the contrary, a
successful voyage, and one of great importance for
the commerce of the world. As has been already
stated, Chancelor was separated from his com-
panions during a storm in August. He now sailed
alone to Vardolhus. After waiting there seven
days for Sir Hugh Willoughby, he set out again,
resolutely determined either to bring that to passe
which was intended, or else to die the death;" and
though certain Scottishmen" earnestly attempted
to persuade him to return, hee held on his course
towards that unknown part of the world, and sailed
so farre that hee came at last to the place where
hee found no night at all, but a continually light and
brightnesse of the sunne shining clearly upon the

huge and mighty sea." In this way he finally
reached the mouth of the river Dwina, in the White
Sea, where a small monastery was then standing at
the place where Archangel is now situated. By
friendly treatment he soon won the confidence of
the inhabitants, who received him with great hos-
pitality. From Archangel he proceeded to Moscow,
where he was welcomed by the Czar Ivan IV., who
urged him to repeat his voyage. In the following
year Chancelor again sailed from England for
Atchangel, but perished on the coast of Scotland
on his return voyage in 1556. In 1564, Burrough,
who had been in Chancelor's ship the Bonaventure
in Willoughby's expedition discovered a channel
between Nova Zembla and the mainland, and in
158o, the "Merchant Adventurers Company" sent
out two ships under Arthur Pet and Charles Jack-
man. Pet, who, like Burrough, had been with
Chancelor, reached the Kane Sea, but found the
pack ice too thick for him to force his way through,
His report of the difficulties he encountered led to
the temporary abandonment of attempts to reach
China by the north-east coast.
Willoughby and Chancelor, Burrough and Pet,
we see had turned their sight along the coast of
Russia, and were the pioneers of the North-east
passage. The next bold explorer, encouraged by
Jacques Cartier's success in Canada resolved to seek
China by the North-west route. This was Martin
Frobisher, who had been convinced by the famous
Sir Humphrey Gilbert and Richard Mills, that it
was no more difficult to find this passage than to
discover the Straits of Magellan. Gilbert's argument
was that America was an island, the Atlantis of
Plato; that Cabot had found an open sea as far
north as Labrador, and that a Mexican friar Ur-
daneta had actually made the passage. It was then
no mere prospecting voyage but an expedition
with a definite task before it that we have now
to relate.


MARTIN FROBISHER (1577)-JOHN DAVIS (1585)-----------------------------------------. I

HENRY HUDSON (16o9)-WILLIAM BAFFIN (1616)...-.....-.......-..---.---.. ........ --- 12

WILLIAM BARENTZ (1596)..... .........................................---------- ..----- ..------. 28

V. BEHRING AND BEHRING STRAIT (1728)-.................------ ....-.-- -------.-------- 34


THE SEARCH FOR FRANKLIN-DR. KANE (1852)..------......--------------------- ------ 55

DR. HAYES (186o-1869)-----------... .................--------------------------------------- 70

THE GERMAN EXPEDITION (1869-1870).................---....-- ------------------------- 8z

THE -' POLARIS" EXPEDITION (1864)------...--------------------.----------------------- 92

THE SEARCH FOR THE "POLARIS"........-----.....------------------------------------- 100


DISCOVERIES OF THE "TEGETTHOFF" (1872-1874) .............--------...............----------------- 2


NORTHEAST PASSAGE-THE "VEGA" (1878-1879)...............------------------------------------..................... 12

VOYAGE OF THE "JEANETTE (1879-1881).....-.......................................... 140


NANSEN (1884) AND PEARY (1891)------------.....-----------..--- -- ----------.----------- 16

ANTARCTIC EXPEDITIONS .-....-- ..------- .........--- ----.------------.. -------------.. 164

CAPTAIN WILKES (1840).......------------------................--......--....................... 65

CAPTAIN SIR JAMES ROSS (1840-1843)----------------------------------------------------- 174

CAPTAIN SIR JAMES ROSS (I84-843)........................ 74
-- "- :-. -
i ': -.... :^ : ^ ^ .
*- r .;. ^^I^ ^ -^ ^ -.




MARTIN FROBISHER was born in Yorkshire, near
Doncaster, about the year 1535, and, as a boy, was
sent to sea. After the rough experiences that a lad
would undergo in those days, in the unwieldy, ill-pro-
visioned ships of those days, he became a trader and a
sailor, and made voyages to the coast of Guinea and
elsewhere. As stated in the Introduction, he was
strongly impressed by the arguments of Sir Humphrey
Gilbert, and became convinced of the possibility of
effecting a passage to China and India by sailing a
north-west course round the continent of America.

Among his friends was a certain Michael Lok, a
merchant of wealth and influence, and ready, like mer-
chants then and now, to enter into schemes that
Promised to extend his business. Lok was also an
indefatigable student of geography, and eagerly
- recorded the plans of Frobisher, whose adviser and
backer he became. Another friend of the Yorkshire
Sailor was the famous Dr. Dee, the Rosicrucian and
SAlchemist, who was a good astronomer and well versed
in navigation, as well as possessed of great geograph-
ical knowledge. The resources, however, of these
three friends were unequal to the task of equipping a
fleet for such a dangerous and uncertain voyage, and,
therefore, they applied to men of wealth in London,
and of influence at the court of Queen Elizabeth, and
Shad the good fortune of enlisting in their favor the
good will of Ambrose Dudley, the Earl of Warwick.
By the pecuniary aid of these supporters, Frobisher was
enabled to build and fit out two vessels. They were
new ships built expressly for the undertaking, of about
twenty tons each, and were called after the Archangels
Gabriel and Michael, and the crew consisted of
thirty-five men and boys. In these days of ocean
steamers of three thousand and four thousand, and
even seven thousand tons, we can hardly realize that
men set out to cross the Atlantic and to pene-
trate into unknown seas, in vessels not much larger or
more seaworthy than the cat-boats and pleasure
boats we see on your bays and rivers in the fine days
of summer.
It was with means thus feeble that the intrepid
navigator went to encounter the ice in localities which
had never been visited since the time of the Northmen.
Setting out from Deptford on the 8th of June, 1576, he
sighted the south of Greenland, which he took for the



Frisland of Zeno. Soon stopped by the ice he was
obliged to return to Labrador without being able to
land there, and he entered Hudson's Straits. After
having coasted along Savage and Resolution Islands,
he entered a strait which has received his name, but
which is also called by some geographers Lunley's
Inlet. He landed at Cumberland, took possession of
the country in the name of Queen Elizabeth, and
entered into some relations with the natives. The
cold increased rapidly and he was obliged to return
to England. Frobisher only brought back some rather
vague scientific and geographical details about the
countries which he had visited; he received, however,
a most flattering welcome when he showed a heavy
black stone in which a little gold was supposed to be
found. At once all imaginations were on fire, and

lish sailors-islands of ice a mile and a half in circum-
ference, floating mountains which were sunk seventy
or eighty fathoms in the sea-such were the obstacles
which prevented Frobisher from reaching, before the
9th of August, the strait which he had discovered
during his previous voyage. The English took pos-
session of the country and pursued, both upon land
and sea, some poor Esquimaux, who, wounded in
this encounter, jumped in despair from the tops of
the rocks into the sea," says Forster in his Voyages
in the North," "which would not have happened if
they had shown themselves more submissive, or if we
could have made them understand that we were not
their enemies." A great quantity of stones, similar
to that which had been brought to England, were
soon discovered. They were of gold marcasite, and


5+:5~.i E~

: 4I


" this kindled a great opinion in the hearts of many
to advance the voyage again."
A company was formed, a charter was granted to
Michael Lok and Martin Frobisher, and a second
expedition was soon ready for sea. It consisted of
three vessels-the Aid, of 240 tons, lent by the
Queen, the Michael, and Gabriel. On board the Aid
were the admiral himself, Martin Frobisher, his lieu-
tenant, George Best, who was the historian of the
voyage, and Christopher Hall, the master. The
Gabriel was commanded by Edward Fenton, with
William Smyth as master, and the Michael by Gil-
bert Yorke.
On the 31st of May, 1577, the expedition set sail,
and soon sighted Greenland, of which the mountains
were covered with snow and the shores defended by
a rampart of ice. The weather was bad. Exceed-
ingly dense fogs, as thick as pea-soup, said the Eng-

200 tons of this substance was soon collected. To
their delight, the English sailors set up a memorial
column on a peak, to which they gave the name of
Warick Mount,and performed solemn acts of thanks
giving. Frobisher afterwards went ninety miles
further on in the same strait, as far as a small island,
which received the name of Smith's Island. There
the English found two women of whom they took
one with her child, but left the other on account of
her extreme ugliness. Suspecting, so much did su-
perstition and ignorance flourish atthis time, that this
woman had cloven feet,theymade hertake the cover-
ings off her feet, to satisfy themselves that they really
were made like their own. Frobisher, now perceiving
that the cold was increasing and wishing to place the
treasures which he thought he had collected in a
place of safety, resolved to give up for the present
any further search for the north-west passage. He


then set sail for England, where he arrived at the end
of September, after weathering a storm which dis-
persed his fleet. The man, woman and child, who
had been carried off, were presented to the Queen.

--- "^ -:' :


.,h: !"J

1 :':,, I -. i, ',


It is said, with regard to them, that the man, seeing
at Bristol Frobisher's trumpeter on horseback,
wished to imitate him and mounted with his face
turned toward the tail of the animal. These savages
were the objects of much curiosity, and obtained per-
mission from the Queen to shoot
all kinds of birds, even swans, on
the Thames, a thing which was
forbidden to every one else under -
the most severe penalties. They
did not long survive, and died
before the child was fifteen months -

and build there a fort which was to be garrisoned with
one hundred men to protect their mines of gold. The
one hundred men were carefully selected to form the
beginning of a colony; there were bakers to prepare
bread, carpenters and masons to
-:- .-' build the fort and house, and gold
refiners to reduce the ores; in
fact, all classes of workmen were
S. :. enrolled. A fleet of fifteen sail
was assembled at Harwich on the
2 7th of May, 1578, including the
15 .. Aid, commanded by Frobisher
himself; the Judith, Captain
Fenton; the Thomas Allen, Cap-
tain York; the Ann Frances,
Captain Best; the Moon, the Ga-
briel, and Michael, and the Em-
ma, a buss of Bridgewater. This
time Frobisher took the route
down channel, and sighted his
supposed Frisland on the 2oth of
June,towhich he gave the nameof
"West England." He succeeded
in effecting a landing, and took
possession in the name of the Queen. Natives
were seen, with dogs and tents closely resem-
bling those of Meta Incognita. During the voy-
age whales played around the ships in innumer-
able schools. It is related that even one of


The stones which Frobisher had -
brought back were pronounced by .- i- i,
all men to contain gold. Perhaps :
we attribute the spread of this be-
lief to Dr. Dee, who had long been .1 .' '!
in search of the philosopher's 7'
stone that could change base met- : ''
als into more precious ones, and -
who even claimed to have turned -. ---- -
into gold a piece of a brass warm- -
ing-pan. England thoughtshehad
found a new Eldorado as rich as
that of Spain; merchants and no- ICEBERG.
bles proffered assistance and even
Queen Elizabeth herself caught the gold fever. She the vessels, propelled by a favorable wind, struck
resolved to occupy the territory to which the name of against a whale with such force that the violence of
Metalncognita,"theunknownboundary,"wasgiven, the shock stopped the ship at once, and that the



-- _,


whale, after uttering a loud cry, made a spring out of
the water and then was suddenly swallowed up. Two
days later the fleet met with a dead whale,which they
thought must be the one struck by the Salamander.
When Frobisher came to the entrance of the strait
which had received his name, he found it blocked up
with ice. "The barque Dennis,one hundred tons,"says
the old account of George Best,"received such a shock
from an icebergthat she sank insightofthewholefleet.
Followinguponthis catastrophe,a suddenandhorrible
tempest arose from the south-east, the vessels were
surrounded on all sides by the ice; they left much of
it, between which they could pass, behind them, and
found still more before them through which it was
impossible for them to penetrate. Certain ships,
either having found a place less blocked with ice, or
one where it was possible to.proceed, furled sails and
drifted; of the others, several stopped and cast their
anchors upon a great island of ice. The latter were
so rapidly enclosed by an infinite number of islets of
ice and fragments of icebergs, that the English were
obliged to resign themselves and their ships to the
mercy of the ice, and to protect the ships with cables,

cushions,mats, boardsand all kinds of articles which
were suspended to the sides in order to defend them
from the fearful shocks and blows of the ice." Fro-
bisher himself was thrown out of his course. Finding
the impossibility of rallying his squadron, he sailed
along the west coast of Greenland, as far as the strait
which was soon to be called Davis' Strait, and pene-
trated the Countess of Warwick Bay. When he had
repaired his vessels with the wood which was to have
been used in the building of a dwelling, he loaded the
ships with 500 tons of stones similar to those which
he had already brought home. Judging the season to
be then too far advanced, and considering also that
the provisions had been either consumedorlost in the
Dennis, that the wood for building had been used for
repairing the vessels, and having lost forty men, he
set out on his return to England on the 31st of
August. Tempests and storms accompanied him to
the shores of his own country. As to the results of
hisexpeditiontheywerealmost noneastodiscoveries,
and the stones, which he had put on board in the
midst of so many dangers, were valueless.
This was Frobisher's last Arctic voyage. We hear
but little of him during the next few years,but in 1585
he commanded a vessel in Drake's expedition to the

"--- ,--:7 -


WestIndies; did good service in the preparatorytask
of hampering the designs of Spain,and in the struggle
with the Armada covered himself with glory by his
conduct in the Triumph, and was rewarded by the
honor of knighthood. Frobisher next married a
daughter of Lord Wentworth, and settled down as a

__ L~zzi-

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~-- -- = = -= = -~



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1. I



country gentleman, but was soon again at the more
congenial task of scouring the seas for the treasure-
ships of Spain. At the siege of Crozon, near Brest, in
the November of 1594, he received a wound, of which
he died at Plymouth on the 22d of the same month.
The-next bold explorer of the frozen North was
John Davis, whose fame is immortalized by the
strait named after him-Davis Strait.
John Davis was born at Sandridge,near Dartmouth,
in the year 1550, or thereabouts. Not far from his
birthplace was Greenway Court, the home of John and
Humphrey Gilbert, who were a few years older than


he,while another Devonshire worthy,Walter Raleigh,
a half-brotherof the Gilberts,was a few years younger.
The little river Dart was then frequented by ships
from all parts of the world, and sailors who had mar-
velloustales to tell. The young Davis seems to have
gone to sea at an early age, and, aswe hear nothing of
him till 1579, was probably engaged in long sea
voyages. At all events,at that date he was recognized
as a captain of skill and courage, fit to be trusted with
any enterprise. Like Frobisher, John Davis, as early
as 1579, had made the acquaintance of the famous
philosopher, Dr. Dee,and had discussed with him the
prospects of a northern voyageof discovery. Dr. Dee
mentions in his journal that on June 3, 1580, "Mr.

Adrian Gilbert and John Davys rode homeward into
Devonshire," after having had conferences with the
learned mathematicianon subjects in which they were
all deeply interested. This was before the last voyage
of Humphrey Gilbert,and his death only inspiredthe
friends with fresh zeal to fulfil his wishes, and take up
the great work where he had left it. Sir Walter
Raleigh joined them, not only with sympathy and
encouragement, but with more substantial aid. Thus
were the comrades who had shared in many a boyish
adventure along the banks of the Dart, and who had
passedsomany happy days of their youth speculating
on the wonders of foreign coun-
tries, nowjoined togetherinagreat
and memorable enterprise. Then
they were boys, full of inquiry and
curiosity, wholonged forthetime
when they, too, might add to the
renown of England. Their early
enthusiasm, aided by capacity for
hard work and the desire to do
well, had borne rich fruit. Now
they were qualified to become the
pioneers of English discovery in
the Arctic Regions.
The three friends met at Dee's
house,near London, on January 23,
1584, and were discussing the proj-
ect they had formed for seeking
_. thenorth-westroadtoChina,when
a visitor was announced. It was
._.- the Secretary of State, Sir Francis
Walsingham, who had called on
his way down the river to Green-
Swich. Walsingham was a sedate
-" and cautious man, yet he became
so interested in the conversation
when it was continued in his pres-
ence, that he expressed a desire to hear the sub-
ject of northern discovery discussed before him in
all its bearings. It was arranged that there should be
a meeting at thehouse of Mr. Beale, a mutual friend,
on the very next day. Accordingly, Dr. Dee, Adrian
Gilbert, andJohn Davismet the Secretaryof State on
the 24th of January in an interview where, as Dr. Dee
tells us, "only we four were secret,and we made Mr.
Secretary privie of the North-west Passage, and all
charts and rutters were agreed upon in general." Sec-
retary Walsingham was a statesman of wide views
and favorable to voyages ofdiscovery, and asaresult
of this meeting, gave his official countenat ee to
the projected expedition.


The next point was to interest the wealthy mer-
chants of the City of London in the new attempt to
discover a shorter route to Cathay. On the 6th of
March John Davis and Adrian Gilbert had an inter-
view with several city magnates, and set forth the
commercial importance of the enterprise. Alderman
Barne, who was Lord Mayor in 1586, Mr. Towerson,
Mr. Yonge, and Mr. Thomas Hudson were the mer-
chants to whom Dr. Dee introduced his friends. The
meeting probably took place at Mr. Hudson's house
at Mortlake-a circumstance of peculiar interest to
Arctic students; for Thomas Hudson is believed, on

merce and the promotion of discovery. He induced
the Queen to grant a charter in the names of himself,
Adrian Gilbert, and John Davis "for the search and
discoveries of the North-west Passage to China." He
likewise recommended his companions,William San-
derson, one of the most liberal and spirited merchants
of London, and a man of great wealth. He subscribed
liberally, advancing the largest part of the funds re-
quired, and superintended all the preparations.
The expedition consisted of two small vessels-the
Sunshine, of London, of fifty tons, commanded by
Davis, with William Eston and Richard Pope as his


. P


good grounds, to have been the uncle and guardian of
the great navigator, Henry Hudson; sothac it is quite
possible that the young Henry may have been present
when his illustrious predecessor in Arctic discovery
met the merchants in his uncle's house.
The next step to be taken by the three adventurers
was to induce their old Devonshire friends to join in
the enterprise, and theywere successful in obtaining
subscriptions both at Dartmouth and at Exeter. Sir
Walter Raleigh entered into their plans with charac-
teristicardor. He received the honor of knighthood
in the end of 1584. He was rapidly becoming
wealthy through the lucrative appointments and gifts
conferred upon him by the Queen, and he spent his
fortune nobly in schemes for the advancement ofcom-

master and master's mate, Henry Davy and William
Crosse as gunner and boatswain, and Mr. John Janes
as merchant and supercargo. The crew consisted of
a carpenter, eleven seamen, four musicians, and a
boy. The Moonshine was commanded by William
Bruton, with John Ellis as master.
On the 7th of June, 1585, they sailed from Dart-
mouth Harbor, but, owing to fogs and contrary winds,
were not well out at sea before July Ist. Schools of
porpoises played around the ship, and some were har-
pooned and eaten, and whales in immense numbers
were seen.
At the end of three weeks the coast of Greenland
was very near. On the 19th of July, the sea being
calm and a dense mist obstructing the view, "a

, -i--. '-


mighty great roaring" was heard. The captain of the
Moonshine was ordered to hoist his boat out and go
ahead to sound, but there was no bottom at 300
fathoms, though the noise was like the breaking of
waves on a beach. Then Davis, taking Master Eston
and Janes with him, and ordering the gunner to fire
a musket as a signal to show the ship's position at the
end of every half hour, pulled away in the direction of
the mysterious noise. He soon found that the ships
were close to a stream of pack-ice, and that the noise
was caused by the large pieces grinding together. He
returned before nightfall, with his boat laden with
ice, which made excellent fresh water. Next day the
fog rose, and the rugged mountains of Greenland,
covered with snow, stood out before them, a wide
extent of pack-ice intervening between the ships and
the shore. Davis called it the Land of Desolation,"
for, as he said, "the irksome noise of the ice and the
loathsome view of the shore bred strange conceits
among us." He had probably reached the east coast
somewhere near Cape Discord. Being almost beset,
Davis shaped a southerly course and got clear of the
pack. .On the 22d he again hoisted out his boat and
pulled inshore to examine the ice. Many seals were
seen and quantities of birds were on the water, which
induced the men to get their lines out, but no fish
were caught. The ice prevented a close approach to
the land, and when the captain returned on board, he
continued his southerly course, intending to round
the southern point of Greenland. He rounded the
point afterwards called Cape Farewell by Davis, and
then steered to the north-west for three days. On
July 29th he sighted land where the Danish town of
Guthavn is now situated. Here the explorers had
theirfirst interview with the Esquimaux. Hearingthe
shoutingand noise, Captain Bruton and Master Ellis,
of the Moonshine, manned their boat, took the four
musicians on board,and hurried either to rescue their
chief or co-operate in his attempt to conciliate the
natives. When they arrived, Captain Davis caused
the musicians to play, while he and his companions
danced and made signs of friendship. Ellis was ap-
pointed to go down to the water-side and win their
confidence, in which he succeeded by carefully imitat-
ing their signs. A good understanding had been es-
tablished before the explorers returned on board that
night,and next morning a number of kayakswere dart-
ing about round the ships, and natives stood on the
nearest islands and madesigns to induce theirvisitors
to land. Again the boat went on shore, and perfect
confidence was established. Five kayaks were pur-
chased and specimens of native clothing; the impres-

sion left on the minds of Davis and Janes being that
the Esquimaux were a tractable people, whom it
would be easy to civilize. Great numbers of seals
were seen, and the vegetation, consisting of dwarf
willow and birch, and of the berry-bearing Embe-
trumn nzirum, was observed.
On the Ist of August, the wind being fair, Davis
shaped a north-west course in pursuance of his dis-
covery, sighted the land on the opposite side of the
channel in 6640' N. on the 6th. Here he cast anchor
in a place which he called Totnes Road,while a lofty
cliff overshadowing the anchorage received the name
of Mount Raleigh. The large bay nearlysurrounding
Mount Raleigh was called Exeter Sound, the point to
the north was christened Cape Dyer, and that to the
south Cape Walsingham. The explorers had their
first encounter with Polar bears under Mount Ra-
leigh. Four were seen from the ship,and the boat was
quicklymanned byeagersportsmen. Janes,who was
on shore, loaded his gun with buckshot and a bullet,
and hit one in the neck. It took to the water, and
was killed by the boat's crew with boar spears, as
well as two others; and a few days afterwards another
bear was secured after a long and exciting encounter.
Dwarf willows were found on shore, and a yellow
flower which they took for a primrose.
The next service performed by the expedition was
the examination of Cumberland Gulf. The northern
point of the entrance was named the Cape of God's
Mercy, and the two ships went up the gulf, discover-
ing an island in mid-channel. The Sunshine sailed
up on one side of it, the Moonshine took the other
channel, and a very complete examination of the
gulf was effected, but without sighting the end of it.
Various indications inclined Davis to the belief that
it was a strait, but a strong north-west wind obliged
him to shape a course towards the open sea. On the
23d of August he anchored on the south shore of
the gulf, and on the 26th he turned homeward and
reached Dartmouth on Sept. 3oth. Three days after
his arrival he addressed a most hopeful letter to Sir
Francis Walsingham. He assured the Secretary of
State that the North-West Passage is a matter
nothing doubtful, but at any tyme almost to be
passed, the sea navigable, void of yse, the ayre toler-
able, and the waters very depe." Davis also pointed
out the trade in oil and furs that might be opened
with the lands actually discovered.
As soon as the explorer "could take order for his
mariners and shipping," he hurried upto London, to
give a personal account to the Secretary of State and
to Mr.Sanderson,and to induce the adventurersto un


dertake a second expedition. The merchants of Dev-
onshire subscribed liberally, and owned two of the
ships which were fitted out for the new attempt. The
exploring fleet consisted of the Mermaid, (120 tons),
the Sunshine, Moonshine, and a pinnace called the
North Star, of ten tons. The conduct of the expedi-
tion was again intrusted to John Davis, who sailed in
the Mermaid, with William Eston again as his master.
Richard Pope, who had been master's mate in the

:' d

,. .

he landed and explored the neighboring country and
renewed his acquaintance with the Esqiumaux from
whom he purchased seals, skins, fish and birds.
On the 4th of July the master of the Mermaid dis-
covered a grave on one of the islands, in which sev-
eral bodies were interred, with a cross laid over them.
It is possible that this may have been a relic of the
Norsemen, or that the tradition of the use of the cross
may have been preserved by the Esquimaux from the

former voyage, now received command of the Sun- wreck of the Norse colonies. A few days afterwards,
shine, with Mark Carter as his mate, and Henry Mor- Captain Davis went for another long boat expedition
gan as purser. Morgan was a servant of Mr. William up one of the fiords. These fiords run up towards
Sanderson. the interior glacier of Greenland for distances of fifty
The new expedition set sail May 7, 1586, and on or even a hundred miles. The frowning granite cliffs
reaching 600 North Latitude Davis sent the Sunshine rise on either side to a great- height, while in several
and North Star to seek for a passage between Green- places there are breaks where small valleys are formed,
land and Iceland, and continued his voyage with his bright with mosses and wild-flowers during the
other ships till he sighted Greenland, June 15th. Here short summer. In the far distance an occasional


glimpse is caught of the white gleaming line of the
When to the southward of Gilbert Sound, in 630 8'
N., Davis fell in with an enormous iceberg on the 17th
of July. Its extent and height were so extraordinary
that the pinnace was sent to ascertain whether it was
land or really ice. The report that it was indeed one
gigantic mass of ice floating on the sea, with bays and
capes, plateaux and towering peaks, excited great as-
tonishment. Soon other masses began to collect round
the ships, while the ropes and sails were frozen and
covered with frost, and the air was obscured by fogs.
This was the more disheartening because in the pre-
vious year the sea was free and navigable in the
same latitude.
Progress was checked, and the men beganto de-
spond. They came aft very respectfully and advised
their general that he should regard the safety of his
own life and the preservation of his people, and that he
should not,through overboldness,run the risk of mak-
ing children fatherless and wives desolate. The gal-
lant seaman was much moved. On the one hand he
had to consider the welfare of those intrusted to his
charge: on the other, he was bound to recognize the
importance of achieving the great business on which
he was employed : "Whereupon," he tells us, "seek-
ing help from God, the fountain of all mercies, it
pleased His Divine Majesty to moove my heart to
prosecute that which I hope shall be to His glory, and
to the contentation of every Christian mind." After
much reflection, he finally resolved that, although
the Mermaid was a strong and sufficient ship, yet
not so serviceable as a smaller vessel for this service,
and being also a heavy expense to her owners, he
would send her home and continue the voyage in the
In pursuit of his search for the hoped for passage,
Davis surveyed this western coast from the 20th to
the 28th of August, laying it down from the 67th
to the 57th parallels of north latitude. He found
enormous numbers of birds breeding in the cliffs,
which led him to suppose that there must be a similar
abundance of fish in the sea. So he hove the ship
to for about half an hour, and in that short time the
men caught a hundred cod. He then anchored in
a roadstead on the Labrador coast, remaining there
until the ist of September. Davis, as was his wont,
made an expedition into the interior, and found a
wooded country with abundance of game. His people
succeeded in bringing down numbers of birds with
bows and arrows, and they caught many more cod at
the harbor's mouth.

On the ist of September the Moonshine was got
under way, and continued to sail along the coast,
with fine weather for three days. It then fell calm,
and the vessel was brought to with a ledge-anchor in
54 30' N. Again the lines were put overboard,
and immense quantities of cod were secured. "The
hook was no sooner over the side, but presently a
fish was taken." On the 4th, Davis anchored again,
having passed a great opening which seemed to offer
another hope of a passage. It was probably the
Strait of Belleisle; but the wind was dead against
him, and he could not enter it. While they were
at anchor, men were sent on shore to fetch some
fish which had been laid out on the rocks to cure.
The place appears to have been somewhere on the
north coast of Newfoundland. Finally, on September
i9th, he turned his prow homeward. The Sunshine,
also, which he had dispatched to sail northward, re-
turned safely to the Thames, but the littleNorth Star
was never heard of.
The explorer addressed a letter to Mr. William
Sanderson from Exeter, on the 14th of October. His
own ship had brought home a cargo of cod-fish, and
the Sunshine had on board 500 sealskins and 140
half-skins. He wrote in feeling terms about the loss
of the pinnace. "God be merciful unto the poor
men and preserve them, if it be His blessed will."
He assured Sanderson that the extensive knowledge
he had acquired of the Northern regions had con-
vinced him that the passage must be in one of four
places, or else that it did not exist. The evidence that
these tentative voyages might be made to pay their
expenses by bringing home cargoes of fish, was an-
other encouraging result of this second attempt.
Davis had been unprovided with fishing gear, had
been obliged to make hooks out of bent nails, and to
use his sounding lines to fish with; while his small
stock of salt only enabled him to bring home about
thirty couple of cod. Yet he had had ocular demon-
stration of the wonderful abundance of fish on the
coast of Labrador.
Although much of Davis's voyage was not in Arctic
waters, we have bestowed good space on it, as his re-
ports probably led the way to the whale and seal fish-
ery, and the cod fishery of Labrador and Newfound-
This second voyage discouraged Davis's Devon-
shire friends; they "fell from the action," he says.
Sanderson and the Londoners were, however, still
confident, and fitted out a third expedition. In this
expedition businesswas a prominent feature. The old
Sunshine and a twenty ton pinnace, the Ellen, were


prepared for the fishery, while only his own ship the
Elizabeth was destined for exploration. On May 19,
1587, the three vessels sailed from Dartmouth, and on
June I4th, sighted Greenland. Here he changed the
disposition of the ships, sending the Elizabeth to the
fishery, and proceeding himself in the Ellen. He
sailed along the west coast of Greenland as far as 720
x2' N., the highest point he reached, and here, on
June 3oth, he saw open water to the north and west.
He called it "Sanderson's Hope." On July 2d he met

passed by a very great gulfe, the water whirling and
roring as it were the meeting of tides." Thus did
Davis point out the way to future important discov-
eries. His exploratory labors threw the light which
marked the way. "He did, I conceive," said Luke
Fox many years afterwards, "light Hudson into his
Davis now set out in his little pinnace, the Ellen,
to meet his consorts who were at the fishery. He did
not find them or any traces of them, so once more

I-J -i

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a "mighty bank of ice which checked his advance;
the weather became foggy, lanes through the ice led
to no exit, and it was not till July 24th that he re-
covered the open sea. Proceeding southward, Davis
says in the log: "We fell into mighty race, where an
island of ice was carried by the force of the current as
fast as our barke could sail. We saw the sea falling
down into the gulfe with a mighty overfal, and ror-
ing, with divers circular motions like whirlepooles, in
such sort as forcible streams passethorow the arches
of bridges." Mr. Janes in his journal says: "We

steered for home, where he landed September 15th,
1587. What became of the fishing ships is not known,
from which fact it has been surmised that they came
safely home and sold their fish to good profit.
John Davis was the first scientific explorer. He
noted the variation and dip of the compass, took
careful observations, defined the coast lines of Green-
land, studied the animal life of the north, made a
vocabulary of the Esquimau language, and explored
Cumberland and Frobisher's or Lunley's Inlets, and
discovered the strait now called Hudson's.





AMONG the men who discussed with John Davis
the plans of Arctic exploration we have found that of
Henry Hudson. From that time till the year 1607 we
hear nothing of him when, under the auspices of the
Muscovy Company, he set out to discover a shorter
route to China. On April 29th he set sail on board the
Hofewell, a vessel of eighty tons. His son Jack shared
his cabin; William Collins and James Young were the
mates, and the crew consisted of eight men. On
June 13th, he sighted the east coast of Greenland, and
then pushed on to the famous Hakluyt Head of Spitz-
bergen, where he could find no passage through
which he could force his way. In the following year
he was sent out again by the same company, and
reached Nova Zembla, but again was unable to make
further progress. The failure of these two attempts
seems to have led the Muscovy Company to withdraw
their support from him, and Hudson took service with
the Amsterdam Company.
In 1609 Hudson crossed the Atlantic in the Half
Moon, with a crew composed in equal parts of Dutch
and English sailors. He had heard the reports of

Captain Smith, the famous leader of the Virginian
colonists, and thought that perhaps a passage to the
west might be found more to the south than in the icy
seas of the north. He explored Chesapeake Bay, but
only to be again disappointed, and then sailed further
north, examining the coast for an opening. With the
hope of finding the long-sought north-west passage,
Henry Hudson, in the Half Moon, rounded the point
of Sandy Hook, and entered into New York bay.
Hence he sailed in his little boat up the noble river
which forever will bear his name, till he reached the
Catskill region in which, according to Washington
Irving and tradition, the ghosts of himself and his men
are still dwelling, under the shadow of the Dunder-
berg. He landed on Manhattan Island, but, owing to
disaffection among his crew, had to return to Europe,
where he landed in England, November 7th.
Hudson was a sailor of whom it has been said "that
never did any one better understand the seafaring pro-
fession, that his courage was equal to any emer-
gency, and that his application was indefatigable,"
and his talents were again called into service by his
native country. Sir Thomas Smith and others re-
solved to fit out another Arctic expedition, and intrust
it to Hudson. Davis, it will be remembered, had in
his careful survey ascertained the existence of four
great openings-Cumberland's Gulf, Lunley's Inlet
(identical with Frobisher's Strait), a great opening to
which he gave no name, but described it from the
conflicting currents that met there as the Furious
Overfall" and the passage of Sanderson's Hope."
Hudson resolved to try his fortune by exploring the
"Furious Overfall."
Nothing can be more sad than the story and ending
of this last voyage of the gallant Henry Hudson. A
ship of thirty-five tons, named the Discovery, was
provided, and Hudson received the command. Once
more his young son Jack, who had reached the age of
seventeen years, was his companion. His mate was
Robert Juet, a treacherous old man, who had served
with Hudson in his second and third voyages.
Thomas Woodhouse; a mathematical student; Habak-
kuk Prickett, a servant of Sir Dudley Digges; Robert
Bylot, an experienced old sailor; Arnold Ludlow, and
Michael Pierce, were the leading men on board.


Henry Green, a good-for-nothing young spendthrift,
befriended by Hudson because he wrote a good
hand, was taken on board at the last moment. Sailing
from Greenhithe on the 22d of April, 16Io, the Discov-
ery made a prosperous voyage to Iceland, and thence
across the Atlantic. In June, Hudson navigated his
ship past the Furious Overfall," and down the strait
which bears his name and leads to the great bay or
inland sea, the Mediterranean of America, as it has

fused and unsatisfactory. Hudson's journal ends on
the 3d of August, and during the three following
months it is not at all clear what he was doing, and
what course he took. But on the ist of November
the Discovery was in a bay at the extreme south of
Hudson's Bay, now called James Bay. She was frozen
in and compelled to winter there.
A spirit of mutiny and discontent began to show
itself during the long and dreary nights, which was


been called, which was ever afterwards to be known as
Hudson's Bay. Hudson sailed through the strait,
with little or no obstruction from ice, until the en-
trance to the bay was reached. The island on the
south side of the entrance was named Cape Digges,
and it was observed that myriads of birds were breed-
ing there. Hudson's own journal unfortunately comes
to an end on reaching Cape Digges. The story is
continued by Habakkuk Prickett, whose narrative is
open to some suspicion, and whose account is con-

increased by privation and hardship, and fostered by
two or three designing villains. Hudson had felt
obliged to supersede his old shipmate Juet in his
rating of mate, and to appoint Robert Bylot in his
place, owing to some misconduct. Henry Green was
an unprincipled scoundrel, whose enmity against his
benefactor arose from the refusal of some trifle for
which he had asked. He formed a conspiracy with
the boatswain, named William Wilson, and three
men, named John Thomas, Michael Pierce, and


2 4

_il Vill I


Andrew Moter. They watched their opportunity. The
provisions had run very low, but Hudson hoped to
replenish them and to obtain a sufficient supply for
the return voyage by salting down birds at Cape
Digges. On the 18th of June, 1611, the Discovery
broke out of her winter quarters, and a course was
shaped for the entrance of Hudson's Strait.
The mutineers thought that there would not be suffi-
cient food to enable them to reach England, and they
conceived the diabolical scheme of turning the sick
HARPOON AND FISH SPEAR. and weak adrift in order to reduce the number of


mouths. As they knew that Hudson would never
consent to this villainy, and as they hated their com-
mander because he had enforced discipline and had
punished two or more of them, they included him and
his son in the number of their intended victims, as
well as all who remained loyal. Habakkuk Prickett
and five others were in bed with scurvy when the ship
broke out of the ice, and a course was shaped north-
ward for Cape Digges.
Prickett tells the story of what took place. He says
that Green and Wilson came to his bunk after the ship
had been three days at sea, and divulged their plot to
him, assuring him that the course they proposed to
take was unavoidable, because there were only four-
teen days' provisions left in the ship. He declares
that he entreated them to desist, at least for a few
days, and that he appealed to the old scoundrel Juet
the disrated mate, but in vain. Prickett was probably
spared because he was a servant of Sir Dudley
Digges, one of the owners. The conspirators trusted
that he would give a plausible account of the affair on
his return home. He never attempted to warn the
captain of his danger, and he was evidently a time-
serving rascal, upon whom no reliance could be
The day was fixed, and Prickett tells us that the
villains passed the greater part of the previous night
in whispered talk. At that time of the year, the night
was as light as the day. In the morning they stood
round the cabin door, waiting for the captain to come
out. Hudson was entirely without suspicion. He
got up as usual, and on stepping on to the deck he
was seized by Thomas and Bennet the cook, while
Wilson, the boatswain, tied his hands behind his back.
The unfortunate captain must have struggled and
called for help, for the carpenter and two other loyal
men ran to his assistance. They were overpowered
by the mutineers, who got possession of the ship. The
shallop was then hauled up alongside. The sick men,
including Mr. Woodhouse the mathematician, were
pulled out of their berths and forced into the boat.
Hudson, as a last hope, as soon as he saw what was
intended, called to Prickett to remonstrate with the
mutineers. But the time-server kept close in his
cabin, and said not a word. The carpenter would
have been allowed to remain, but he declared that
he would rather die with true men than live
as the associate of cowards. He, and the two
other loyal men, were forced into the boat with the
four sick. Then young Jack Hudson, who had been
his father's companion in all his voyages, and was
now in his eighteenth year, was taken out of the cabin

Sckon ll

and driven into the boat. Hudson followed. The
shallop was cast adrift, with nine men crowded into


her, one fowling-piece, some powder and shot, an
iron pot, and a little meal.
The ship stood clear of the ice, and then hove to,
while the murderers ransacked the captain's cabin.
This aroused a hope in the minds of the forlorn people
in the boat that the villains had relented. They pulled
with all their might, and soon came close to the ship
again. But they were doomed to cruel disappoint-
ment. As they came up alongside, the mainsail was
let run, the topsails were hoisted, and the cowardly
rascals fled as if from an enemy. Hudson and his
doomed companions were never heard of more.
Eleven men remained on board. Robert Bylot, the
mate, was, it is to be hoped, an unwilling spectator of
the crime that was perpetrated before his eyes. Juet,
the disrated mate, theyoung scoundrel Green, Moter,
Pierce, Thomas, and Wilson were the ringleaders.
The cook was an accomplice, as was Francis Clem-
ents, a friend of Thomas. Simmes seems merely to
have acquiesced, and Pricket was a time-server. On
the 29th of July, 161 the Discovery was hove to off
Cape Digges, where the birds breed. The five ring-
leaders of the mutiny went onshore in a boat,to com-
municate with a party of Esquimaux. They were
unarmed. Two were bartering for venison, two were
gathering sorrel, and there was a boat-keeper. They
were suddenly attacked by the savages, and all were
mortallywounded. Tumbling into the boat together
she was shoved off. The Esquimaux then began
shooting at them with bows and arrows, and Green
was killed outright. The rest got back to the ship,
but they all died within a few days. Seldom has
retribution followed so quickly on the perpetration
of crime. They barely survived their victims. Old
Juet, who was not on shore with them, died on the
passage home.
The survivors were Bylot the mate, who took com-
mand, Bennet the cook, Clements, Simmes and
Prickett. They shot about 300 birds at Cape Digges.
and put themselves on an allowance of half a bird a
day,with a little meal. They returned through Hud-
son's Strait, and shaped a course for Ireland. Soon
the meal was exhausted. Bennet the cook kept the
bird's bones, and fried them in candle grease. The
last bird was in the steep tub when they sighted Dur-
sey Island, and anchored in Berehaven,where a crew
was hired to take the ship round to the Thames.
Bylot and Pricket hurried up to London,and told the
best story they could invent to their employers. No
one was punished. Pricket wrote a narrative of the
catastrophe. Bylot continued to receive appoint-
ments from Sir Thomas Smith and his colleagues. A

younger son of Henry Hudson received employment
from the East India Company on the ground that
"the father had perished in the service of his
Thus had bold Henry Hudson followed up the
beacon light of Davis, reached the strait and bay
which immortalize his name, and found a grave in
the midst of his discoveries. His labors were appre-
ciated, and it was resolved that an expedition should
be dispatched to complete his work in the spring of
the following year. Two vessels were fitted out, the
Resolution and Discovery. The command of the ex-
pedition was intrusted to Thomas Button, an officer
of tried valor and experience; and it was under the
special patronage of Prince Henry, who signed the
Thomas Button was the. son of Miles Button of
Duffryn in Glamorganshire, whose family had been
seated therefore seven generations. Young Thomas,
who was born at Duffryn, was sent to sea in 1592.
He was in the West Indies with Captain Newport in
1603, and commanded a king's ship in 1609. In 1612
hewas appointed to lead the new expedition to Hud-
son's Bay on board the Resolution,the Discovery being
commanded by Captain Ingram. A relation named
Gibbons and a friend named Hawkbridge accom-
panied him, while Bylot and Prickett, the survivors
of Hudson's fatal voyage were on board. The ships
were supplied with provisions for eighteen months,
and in May, 1612, they left the Thames.
The expedition reached Cape Digges without en-
countering any difficulties from ice in Hudson's
Strait,and remained there three weeks in orderto put
a pinnace together that had been taken out in pieces.
Button then entered Hudson's Bay, and proceeded
westward, discovering the southern coast of South-
ampton Island and off-lying islets, to one of which
Button gave the name of Mansell Island, after his
relation Admiral Sir Edward Mansell; to another
Cary's Swan's Nest;" to a third, Hopes Check'd,"
because there his expectations of making progress
received a check. Bad weather came on, and late in
August, Button sought refuge in a small creek on
the western side of Hudson's Bay, which was named
Port Nelson, after the master of the Resolution, who
died and was buried there. He was thus the dis-
coverer of the west coast of Hudson's Bay, Hudson
himself having only sailed down its east coast to the
southern extremity.
Button determined towinter at Port Nelson,and at
once set his people to work to procure as much game
as possible. They obtained a large supply of ptarmi-



gan, but the winter was very severe, and, although
they had fresh food, the health of the men suffered
from the intense cold. Button kept their minds em-
ployed by requiring them to answer questions relating

to the voyage and its objects, and by thus interesting
them in the work upon which they were engaged. In
June, 1613, the ice broke up, and the ships left their
winter quarters and reached Cape Digges. In return-

:I~~-; -~---~-- ,:~~-~.;


ing by Hudson's Strait, Button discovered that the
land on which Cape Chidley is situated is an island,
and he took his ships through the strait which is thus
formed. On old maps the island is called Button's
Island, a name which ought to have been retained.
He returned to England in theautumn of I613,but his
journal was never published. We are indebted to
Luke Fox,a later explorer,for all the information that
has reached us respecting Button's voyage. He be-
came Admiral Sir Thomas Button, and was in com-
mand on the coast of Ireland in 1618. He was Rear-
Admiral in the fleet of Sir Edward Mansell, which
was sent against the Algerine pirates in 1620, and in
1623 was again employed in suppressing piracy in the
Irish Sea. Sir Thomas married Mary, daughter of
Sir Walter Rice of Dynevor, and, dying in April,1634,
he left a son who succeeded him at Duffryn. The
expedition of Sir Thomas Button to Hudson's Bay
was ably conducted. It resulted in considerable addi-
tions to geographical knowledgeasregardsthesouth-
ern shores of Southampton Island, and in the discov-
ery of the western side of the bay. Button's relation,
Captain Gibbons,received command of the Discovery
in 1614 to followup the discoveries of his predecessor.
But he was unable to enter Hudson's Strait,and was
driven by the ice into a bay on the coast of Labra-
dor, where he remained for twenty weeks. His crew
named the place "Gibbons his Hole;" and on being
released from the ice, he returned home.
The persevering adventurers of London were not
discouraged by one or two failures. In 1615 they sent
out another expedition,consisting of the Discovery,of
fifty-five tons, commanded by Robert Bylot,who had
served in the three previous expeditions under Hud-
son, Button and Gibbons in the same ship. William
Baffin was his mate and associate," and the crew
consisted of fourteen men and two boys. Sailing in
April, 1615, they sighted Cape Farewell on the 6th of
May. Crossing Davis Strait, the Discovery was safely
anchored in a good harbor on the west side of Reso-
lution Island, which is at the northern entrance of
Hudson's Strait, on the ist of June. Bylot was an
experienced seaman, and Baffin was a scientific navi-
gator, who lost no opportunity of noting everything
that would be useful to his brother sailors, like Davis
before him. They had some difficulty with the ice at
the entrance of the strait; but eventually sailed along
the northern side until they reached a group, which
Baffin named the Savage Islands, because they met
with a party of Esquimaux on the shore. Continu-
ing a course westward along the northern coast, the
Discovery was closely beset by the ice off some land

which Baffin named "Broken Point." The ship was
immovable for several days, and the men amused
themselves on the ice by firing at butts with bows
and arrows and playing at foot-ball.
Baffin was very differently employed. He was, like
his great predecessor Davis, a seaman who closely
studied the scientific branch of his profession, and
strove to improve the methodsof observing. He was
particularly anxious to test the various theoretical
methods of finding longitude. While beset in the ice
off Broken Point he took a complete lunar observa-
tion, and it was the first ever recorded to have been
taken at sea, with the doubtful exception of one re-
ferred to by Sarmiento. Baffin took altitudes of the
sun and moon, and measured the distance between
them by the difference of azimuth. He probably
adopted this method because he possessed no instru-
mentwith which he could measure so large an angle.
On the 27th of June the ice opened out, and the
Discovery was able to proceed on her voyage, sight-
ing Salisbury Island on the Ist of July. Advancing
across the channel they reached a point on the north-
west side of Southampton Island, which Baffin
named Cape Comfort. Here the ice was packed so
close that the attempt to proceed further was aban-
doned. Moreover, the water began to shoal, and land
was seen ahead, which led Baffin to suppose that he
was at the mouth of a large bay. When Sir Edward
Parry was exploring the same region in 1824, he
named the furthest land seen from the Discovery,
Cape Bylot, and an island on the opposite shore,
Baffin Island. They are on either side of the en-
trance to Frozen Strait, the former on Southampton
Island. Passing between Salisbury and Notting-
ham Islands, which are at the western end of Hud-
son's Strait, the Discovery came to an anchor at
Cape Digges on the 29th of July.
The number of guillemots breeding at Cape Digges
is almost incredible to those who have not seen it.
The crew of the Discovery killed about seventy of
these birds, but they could easily have shot several
hundred if they had been wanted. Bylot and Baffin
then shaped a course for England, on their return.
Passing down Hudson's Strait without any trouble
from ice, they crossed the Atlantic, sighted Cape
Clear, and anchored in Plymouth Sound on the 8th
of September, 1615, without the loss of a single soul.
The conclusion arrived at by Baffin respecting north
west passage, after his return from this voyage, was,
that if there were any passage up Hudson's Strait it
was by some narrow inlet, but that the main passage
would be up Davis Strait. He was perfectly correct.


The completion of the examination of Davis's route
by way of the Furious Overfall was steadily pro-
gressing, but after the return of Baffin in 1615, there
was a pause for sixteen years. At last two voyages
were planned, one vessel to sail from the port of Bris-
tol and the other from London. The Maria, of sev-
enty tons, under the command of Captain Thomas
James, left Bristol on the 3rd of May 1631. James
had made no study of previous voyages to the north,
entered no seamen acquainted with ice navigation, and

been lost to us. Besides being a thorough seaman
and an ardent explorer, he was a quaint and very
entertaining writer. If he had a fault it was that
he possibly had too good an opinion of himself. He
had been zealously urging the dispatch of a new
expedition for several years. At length he succeed-
ed in interesting Mr. Henry Briggs in northern dis-
covery, and the great mathematician not only wrote
an able treatise on the subject, but also induced Sir
John Brooke to join in the venture. A vessel named


when he encountered drifting ice-floes in Hudson's
Strait he was quite helpless. At length he reached
Cape Digges on the 15th of July.
Luke Fox was a man of a very different stamp. He
was a Yorkshireman, clear-headed, intelligent, and
full of enthusiasm to advance the cause of Arctic dis-
covery. He made a special and most diligent study
of previous voyages, especially of the enterprises of
John Davis. It is to Fox that we owe a knowledge
of the important expedition of Sir Thomas Button,
and of other voyages which would otherwise have

the Charles, of eighty tons, was fitted out, provisioned
for eighteen months, and manned with twenty sail-
ors and two boys. Old Mr. Briggs died while the
ship was being prepared for sea. As the introducer
of the use of logarithms he was one of the great-
est benefactors the navy has ever had. His place
was taken by Sir Thomas Roe, the eminent trav-
eller and diplomatist, who entered heartily into the
project, and, with Sir John Wolstenholme, superin-
tended the fitting out of the ship. The Master and
Brethren of the Trinity House also gave their help


Captain Fox was perfectly satisfied with his stores
and provisions. He tells us that he had excellent
fat beef, strong beer, good wheaten bread, Iceland
ling, butter and cheese of the best, admirable sack,
and aqua vita2, pease, oat meal, wheat meal, oil, bal-
sams, gums, unguents, plasters, potions, and purging
pills. My carpenter was fitted from the thickest bolt
to the tin tack, my gunner from the sabre to the
pistol, my boatswain from the cable to the sail twine,
my cook from the caldron to the spoon."


Never was a commander so perfectly satisfied with
himself, his crew, and everything on board. It is
quite pleasant to read his journal. All was right that
had anything to do with him, and his geese were all
swans. On the 3rd of May, 1631 this ablest of com-
manders, with the best of ships, and the most excel-
lent provisions, sailed from Deptford. He dropped
his name of Luke, and called himself North West Fox.

But if he was conceited, he had something to be con-
ceited of, and he was an able and accomplished man.
On the i8th of June the Charles was nearing her
work. Those overfalls and races of tide," so fully
described by Davis, were encountered in the right lat-
itude, and Cape Chidley was sighted on the 20th.
Fox was now about to try his turn at following up the
beacon-light of John Davis. He found a good deal of
ice in Hudson's Strait, as is usual at that time of
year, but it was in small pieces floating apart, and
was no hinderance to navigation. On the 25th of June
the sea was calm, the sky clear, and pieces of spotless
ice were floating on the water, a lovely scene when
the sun was seen to touch the horizon. Fox was a
classical scholar, a careful observer, and he appreci-
ated the beauties of nature. The sun kist Thetis in
our sight," he wrote; "the same greeting was 5
west from the north, and at the same instant the rain-
bow was in appearance I think to canopy them a
bed." Next morning the sun rose clear; "and so
continued all this cold virgin day; but now the frost
takes care that there shall no more pitch run from off
the sunny side of the ship." The Charles was beset
in the strait for several days, but Fox judged from
the appearance of the sky, that the northern side was
clear of ice. On the I5th of July, the passage of
Hudson's Strait was achieved, and the ship was in
sight of the islands at its western entrance, named
Digges, Salisbury, Nottingham, Mansell, and South-
ampton. "They were so named," says Fox, "as a
small remembrance of the charge, countenance, and
instruction given to the enterprise, and which, though
small, neither time nor fame ought to suffer oblivion
to bury. For whensoever it shall please God to ripen
those seeds, and make them ready for his sickle ; he
whom he hath appointed to be the happier reaper of
this crop, must remember to acknowledge that those
honorable and worthy personages were the first ad-
vancers." Most true neither the advancers and lib-
eral merchants who supplied the means, nor the illus-
trious seamen who made the discoveries, should be
forgotten by posterity. It is to them that we owe
those solid foundations of national enterprise, and of
love for the common weal, upon which the superstruc-
ture of the British Empire has been erected by their
On the 21st of July the Charles was off the island
named "Cary's Swan's Nest" by Button; and the
27th another island was discovered and named "Sir
Thomas Roe's Welcome," in 64' o' N. This desig-
nation has since been transferred to the channel in
which the island is situated, and as such it often


occurs in the narratives of more recent northern came to the conclusion that the captain was no sea-
voyages. man. The cabin was so small that they were obliged
Coasting round the western shore hegavethe names to dine between decks, and though the ship was only
of "Brooke Cobham" and "Briggs his Mathemat- under courses, she took in such seas that sauce
ics" to two other islands, and then he proceeded would not have been wanting if there had been roast
alongthe western shore of Hudson's Bay as far south mutton." "Theirship took itsliquoraskindly as them-


as Port Nelson, where Button's expedition wintered.
No sign of any opening to the westward appeared,
and Fox was making his way across Hudson's Bay
again when he fell in with the Maria, commanded by
Captain James, of Bristol, on the Ist of August. Next
day Captain Fox dined on board the Maria, and had
a cordial reception. He found the ship ill-found, and

selves, for her nose was no sooner out of the pitcher
but her neb, like the duck's, was in it again." He
doubted whether it would be better for the Maria to
be beset in the ice, where the crew would be kept
from putrefaction by the piercing air, or to be left in
the open sea, where they would be kept sweet by be-
ing thus daily pickled. He was very facetious in his


remarks on the Bristol ship and her c
thus encountered in that solitary sea,
ingwith them forseventeen hours he p
with his rival and stood southward a
He established the fact that there w;
along the western coast of Hudson's B.
to 550 io' N., a distance 620 miles.
Having completed this examination
northward, and was in sight of Cary'

Sr- -.



again by the 7th of September. He then proceeded
up the eastern side of the coast-line, which trends
northward from the western entrance of Hudson's
Strait, the whole of which was a new discovery. Pass-
ing a headland,towhich he gave the name of Lord
'Weston's Foreland," Fox reached a point in 660 47'
N., where the land began to trend to the south-east,
and this he christened "Fox his Farthest." In after
years Sir Edward Parry gave the name of Fox's Chan-
nel to the great openingleadingto "Fox his Farthest,"
and our gallant Yorkshireman has this credit down to
the present day, that his Fart/est is still an Ultima
Thule, and that it has never since been visited by any
later explorer.
Fox was sent out because Sir Thomas Button had
reported that the tide off Nottingham Island came
from the north-west,and that,consequently,there was
probability of a passage in that direction. But by
careful observations Fox had ascertained that the tide
came from the south-east in that locality,and he there-
fore concluded that he ought to return to England.
Parry, in 1824, observed that the tides were rapid and

rew, which he very irregular, and hfe had little doubt that this irreg-
and after be- ularity was caused by a meeting of the tides. The
irted company flood comes from the northward down Fox's Channel,
long the land. and meets the rapid stream which sets in from Hud-
as no opening son's Strait.
ay from 650 30' Onthe 2ist of September, after having well weigh-
ed all considerations which might make it advisable
n, Fox steered to winter, and the strong reasons against that course,
sSwan's Nest" North West Fox decided upon returning home, and
he made sail for England. That
_.__- morning there was a brilliant sun-
rise, which gave rise to the fol-
lowing strange conceit from the
-- -- -- --
S- pen of the old seaman. "This
S morning Aurora blusht as though
she had ushered her master from
S some unchaste lodging, and the
Sair so silent as though all those
handmaids had promised secresy.'
S With a fair wind the Charles ran
:--. down Hudson's Strait without any
-- hinderance from the ice, sighting
> Resolution Island, on the north
side of the eastern entrance, on
S the 27th. She arrived safely in
-he Downs, without losing ng a single
-- -. soul, and with all the crew sound

and well. Fox truly claimed that
he had "proceeded in these discov-
eries farther than any of his pre-
decessors, in less time and at less charge; that he
cleared up all the expected hopes from the west side
of Hudson's Bay;" and, he could now add, he discov-
ered a coast-line on the east side of the channel bear-
ing his name, which has never since been explored
or visited.
The cruise of the Maria was not so fortunate. After
parting company with Captain Fox in Hudson's Bay,
she struck on arock when Captain James was in adeep
sleep. The ship seems to have been badly handled.
The sails were thrown aback, but without effect. They
were then furled and an anchor was laid out astern.
All the water was started and the coal was thrown
overboard. Then all hands went to the capstan and
hove round with such good-will I hat the cable parted.
Eventually the ship floated off; and Captain James
controlled his passion, and checked some bad counsel
that was given him to revenge himself on the officer
of the watch. The fault was his own. He ought not
to have been in bed and asleep when the ship was so
near the land. He found a secure harbor in the ex-
treme south of Hudson's Bay, protected byan island



afterwards named Charlton Island, and there he de- with the mainsail. In the inside the bonnet sails
termined to winter. During October and November it formed the walls, and bed places were built round
was intensely cold and much snow fell. Yet the coun- three sides. The hearth was in the centre. A second
try was by no means Arctic in character. There house was built with the foresail for a roof. A store-
were woods of fir-trees, and the crew was able to cut house was also constructed to receive all the provi-
plenty of fuel. A hut was built on shore for the sick, sions and stores from the ship. Before Christmas the
in which a large fire was kept burning. The first man houses were covered deep with snow.
to succumb to the miseries of the situation was the In February the scurvy began to show itself, and
gunner, who sank gradually in spite of being allowed before long two-thirds of the crew were down with it.
to drink nothing but sack. The ship was driven on Thus the miserable winter passed on, and by the end
shore, and Captain James caused the provisions to be of April the snow had ceased, and rain began to fall.



[ "

..... "-k' --' ~c~-
.... -:_ : _- :
: .:----. .. -.__= t _*. : o Z: -
i-:- :.'- -._ _.

____-_ _- -.-- ( ..:_-: _-_ _.-i-. -- _. .

landed. But the cold increased, they could not cut
vinegar and wine with hatchets, and were in a condi-
tion of extreme misery. They were now all collected in
a house they had built in the shelter of a wood which
they named Winter's Forest" in honor of Sir John
Winter. The house was under a clump of trees,
and at a short distance from the beach, where the
ship was on shore. It was about twenty feet
square, built of upright posts with the sides wat-
tled with boughs, and about six feet high. The roof
was of rafters and boughs, the whole covered over

They obtained very few ptarmigan or game of any
kind, and lived on the salt beef and oatmeal they had
brought from England, with pork, fish, and boiled
peas. All the men who were able to move were
obliged to work on board, pumping and digging the
ice out of the ship. On the 6th of May, John Warden,
the master's mate died, and was buried on the sum-
mit of a bleak rising ground, which was named Bran-
don Hill. A few days afterwards the carpenter died,
and was interred beside the master's mate. The gun-
ner's body, which had been buried at sea, was found


imbedded in the ice under the gun-room ports. It was
dug out and placed in the earth, by the side of his
shipmates on Brandon Hill. As the weather got

- t_ .


already mentioned in the voyage of Captain Bylot,
whose mate he was on board the Discovety. This
great sailor whose courage is commemorated in the

- .. --
r;--= .
:"' -

warmer the work of refitting the ship advanced.
Captain James became more hopeful; he hoisted the
ensign on the birthday of the Prince of Wales, and
called the place Charlestown, which,
by contraction, became Charlton
Island. By the 8th of June the
water was pumped out of the ship,
but she was aground in the sand, and
it was necessary to lighten her by -
taking out all the ballast, in order to
get her afloat. This operation was
successfully performed, the ship was "
rigged, and the stores were brought
onboard. As the snow disappeared, e
vetches and scurvy-grass were found
in considerable quantities, which con-
duced.to the recovery of the sick.
On the Ist of July, 1732, Captain
James took a last look at the graves
of his companions, and returning to
the ship, made sail for Bristol, where
he arrived safely in September.
Let us now trace the expeditions

. :--_,~ ..i

Discovery, of fifty-five tons, with a crew of sixteen
men. Baffin's papers and maps fell into the hands
of Purchas, who published, in his Pilgrimes," the

S? 7 i '- ..

-- rp..-.. _-', i- -

-- '
. .


that sought for the North-west Passage by another of great navigator's "Briefe and True Relation," and
the routes indicated by Davis, the road by Sander- his letter to Sir John Wolstenholme. But Purchas
son's Hope. The name of William Baffin has been omitted Baffin's priceless map and his journal, thus

~-(=-' i

expanse of water named Baffin's
Bay is believed to have been born
in London about the year 1584.
In 1612 he had been pilot on the
Patience of Hull, that sailed from
that port to explore Greenland;
in 1613-14, he had been engaged
in the whale fishery near Spitz-
bergen, as above stated, was with
Bylot in the voyage of the Dis-
covery in 1615. He was a man
of enthusiastic zeal, mild and
genial in manner, and a skilful
and scientific navigator. He was
well trained by his previous ex-
periences in the ice.
The voyage of I616 was under-
taken by Sir Thomas Smith, Sir
Francis Jones, Sir Dudley Digges,
and Sir John Wolstenholme. As
before, Robert Bylot was ap-
pointed master, and William
Baffin again became pilot of the


doing an irreparable injury to posterity. They are only eight or nine feet, the flood coming from the
now lost, although it is probable that the very rare south. Working up against a dead foul wind the old
map met with in a few copies of the narrative of craft made but slow progress, and encountering a
Luke Fox, may be partly taken from the work of dead whale far out at sea, some time was spent in
Baffin. getting the whalebone on board. But by sunset of
The Discovery sailed from Gravesend on the 26th the 3oth they were fairly in sight of Sanderson his
of March, 1616, and shaped a course down channel; Hope, the farthest land Master Davis was at," on

but a westerly wind coming
on, she put into Dartmouth
Harbor, and remained there
for eleven days. Thus was
the ship destined to carry
forward the discovery of
Davis beyond his furthest
point, receiving shelter in
the harbor which was in
sight of the home he had
loved so well. The succes-
sors of Davis left Dart-
mouth on the i5th of April,
a month earlier than Davis
had usually sailed from the
ssme port. The first land
they saw was the coast of
Greenland near Cockin
Sound, in 65 20' N., where
Baffin had been in his
first Arctic voyage with
James Hall, in 1612. Sever-
al Esquimaux in their kay-
aks came round the ship,
and were given small pieces
of iron; but Bylot and Baf-
fin did not wish to anchor so
early in the voyage, having
made a good passage across
the Atlantic. The wind
was against them, and they
worked up to the northward
until they reached 700 20' N.
"Then we came to an an-
chor in a faire sound near
the place Master Davis call-
ed London Coast. This

was probably near Noursoak, on the north shore of
the Waigat, or strait dividing Disco Island from
the mainland of Greenland.
At sunset on the 22d of May the Discovery left her
anchorage in the Waigat, after a stay of two days,
during which Baffin diligently observed the tides.
These tidal observations gave rise to some appre-
sion respecting the passage, for the rise and fall was

-j 'U

,~ I.


the 3oth of June, 1587, an interval of nearly thirty
years. Pushing through some loose ice, they came
among islands, where Baffin and his crew had pleas-
ant relations with some Esquimaux lasses, showing
them the ship, and helping them to go from one is-
land to another, in search of their men folk. They
called the group Women Islands," a name it still


From the "Women Islands" Baffin passed on to
the group now called Baffin Islands;" but finding
much ice along the coast, the bold pilot steered west-
ward, and took the perilous course of attempting the
middle pack. Parry succeeded in passing through it
in 1819, and Nares in 1875, but there is great danger
of being beset and drifted southward. It is always
safer to keep near the shore. Stick to the land-
floe !" was the favorite maxim of experienced whal-
ing captains. Baffin came to the same conclusion.
After a short trial of the middle pack he resolved to
keep near the land; and on the 15th of June he an-
chored in Melville Bay, under the lee of some islands
off the point now called Cape Shackleton, which is
1,400 feet high, and nearly perpendicular. Here the
ship was visited by Esquimaux in kayaksand umenaks,
who exchanged narwhals'hornsforpieces of iron and
glass beads. Baffin, therefore, called the place Horn
Sound, a name which ought to be restored on modern
maps, just north of Cape Shackleton, where there is
a cliff frequented by guillemots.
In the last days of June the Discovery made the
passage of Melville Bay, since so much dreaded by
whalers,with little or no obstruction from the ice,and
by the istof Julyshe had reached the "north water."
Baffin named a fair headland Cape Dudley Digges,in
76.8 N., and a deep bay twelve leagues farther north
was called Wolstenholme Sound. Here the little
vessel was anchored; but in a few hours she was
driven out to sea, the gale increased, her foresail was
blown out of the bolt-ropes, and when the weather
cleared they found themselves imbayed in another
deep sound, where they anchored. Seeing several
whales,they gave it the name of Whale Sound. The
windsoon moderated,andthe Discoverycontinued her
adventurous course along this far northern land, until
she was stopped by the ice in 780 N., when in sight of
an opening named Smith Sound, "the greatest and
largest in all this bay." An island between Smith
and Whale Sounds received the name of Hakluyt
Island. Here the Discovery was again anchored, in
the hope of finding whalebone on the shore. But
again the wind and sea rose, and they were driven
from their shelter, to beat about for two days in the
"north water" of Baffin's Bay. When the weather
cleared up, they sighted a group of islands, which
received the name of Cary Islands, after the ship's
captain, Mr. Alwyn Cary.
Baffin stood to the westward in an open sea, with a
stiff gale of wind, until the ioth of July, when it fell
calm. The Discovery was now on the western side of
the bay, and an opening was in sight which received

the name of Jones Sound. Here a boat was sent on
shore, and many walrus were seen on the rocks, but a
fair wind springing up, no attempt was made to kill
them. Running southward another opening was dis-
covered in 74 30' which was called Lancaster Sound
inhonorof the eminent directorof theEastIndiaCom-
pany who had commanded the firstEnglish voyage to
the East Indies. Too hastily assuming this and other
sounds to be merely bays, Baffin ran southward along
the western coast of Davis Strait for ten days, and
then standing eastward, after some difficulty from
large floes of ice,succeeded in reachingthewest coast
of Greenland again, and anchored in Cockin Sound.
Several of the crew had been attacked by scurvy, and
the cook had died. But such quantities of sorrel and
scurvy grass were now gathered and administered to
the sick, that in ten days they were all in perfect
health again. Leaving Cockin Sound on the 6th of
August, the Discovery had a prosperous voyage
home, and on the 3oth of August anchored off Dover.
Thus was the wish of Davis accomplished. His dis-
covery as far as Hope Sanderson was extended by his
successor, and the whole of Baffin's Bay was added
to geographical knowledge. It is pleasant to feel that
Baffin venerated the memory of his illustrious prede-
cessor. He always mentions him with respect, and
in his letter to Sir John Wolstenholme he generously
says: "Neither was Master Davis to be blamed in
his report and great hopes; fpr as far as Hope San-
derson the sea is open, of an unsearchable depth and
good color." Baffin's conclusion was that "there is
no passage nor hope of passage to the north of Davis
Strait." But Baffin was wrong, and Davis was right.
In the distant future the wishes of Davis received
further development, and Davis Strait proved to be
the wayto further important geographical discovery,
westward and northward by LancasterSound, and by
Smith Sound, openings which Baffin had erroneously
supposed to be merely bays.
After 1616, Baffin, in order to obtain suitable em-
ployment, was obliged to enter the service of the
East India Company. But when he found himself
under this necessity, it is extremely interesting to
find that, like Davis before him, he never abandoned
the hopeof continuing his northern discoveries. He
even conceived the very same scheme which Davis
so long entertained, namely, of making the northern
passage by way of the Pacific. Mr. Briggs, in his
"Brief Discourse on a North-west Passage," says
that Baffin told him "that he would, if he might get
employment, search the passage from Japan, by the
coast of Asia, any way he could."


M ." '.

~r~9 i5

* Iq'



i- C -i~:


* E

~p~iI~p~ ~-
~ r
'2?IWLk~r ..

'-)"` -t:


9P .-I.N.


The most agreeable method of acquiring a knowl-
edge of Arctic geography is by the contemplation of
the life of a great explorer. For by this biographical
method, each coast and island, each bay and strait,
is connected with some incident in the life-story of
the discoverer or of his successors. Interest is thus
given to what would otherwise be a mere list of
names and lile is breathed into the inorganic mass.
A knowledge of the lives of John Davis and of his
immediate successors, requires an intimate acquaint-
ance with Davis Strait and its shores, with the east
and west coasts of Greenland,with the Hudson River,
Hudson Strait and Bay, and with Baffin's Bay; in

short,with all the nearer regions of ArcticAmerica.
It is desirable that the student should be conversant
with the achievements of Arctic worthies in other
parts of the world; because he should contemplate
the complete life-stories of his heroes, and thus real-
ize how, and by the possession of what qualifications
their Arctic work was done. The thorough and
complete grounding which such a study supplies is
th6 best preparation for an examination of the labors
of modern explorers and of the results of their work,
which will include the acquisition of an intelligent
knowledge and appreciation of the geography of the
whole Arctic Regions.



THE Dutch. as we have seen, were rivals with the
English in exploring the icy seas and snow-covered
lands of theArctic, and sent out Hudson on one of his
expeditions. Before this voyage of the English sailor,
several attempts had been made by the merchants of
Amsterdam to extend their trade in the northern seas
They were acquainted with the labors of Willoughby,
and the other English adventurers, and formed a
resolution to adopt some route by way of the island
of Nova Zembla. Funds were raised by the liberal
and wealthy burghers and corporations of Amster-
dam, a ship named the Mercare was fitted out, and
William Barentz, a native of Terschelling, near the
Texel, was appointed to command her. In 1594 he
sailed for the north,sighted NovaZemblaJuly4th,and
from that day to the 3d of August strove steadily,but
fruitlessly, to force his way through the ice. No
navigator had hitherto displayed such dogged per-
severance, and it was only the urgent entreaties of
his men that induced him to steer homeward. The
reports that Barentz brought home, and the valuable
astronomical observations he had made, were laid
before the government of the States General, and
then "High M iglitinesses"resolved to take the matter
in hand. They,therefore,fitted a small fleet of seven
vessels, giving the command to Jacob van Heems-
kerke. ard appointing Barentz as pilot. The expedi-
tion was, however, a failure; the ships could not
penetrate the ice-pack, and Heemskerke returned
home. As is often the case, governments shrink from
enterprises which private individuals persevere in,
and when the States-General refused to do more for

Arctic exploration than offer a reward for the discov.
ery of the northeast passage, the merchants of Am-
sterdam again cameto the front. They fitted out two
ships, one commanded by Heemskerke, the other by
Jan Comelissoon Rijp. Barentz, although he had
only the name of pilot, was the real chief of the ex-
pedition. On May 1o, 1596, the ships set sail, and on
June 5th saw their first masses of ice, whereatt they
were much amazed, believing them at first tobewhite
swans." June 19th, they landed on a piece of land
which they thought was part of Greenland, but to
which, on account of its sharp-pointed mountains,
they gave the name ofSpitzbergen. The ice,however,
forced them back to the south, and, off BearIsland,
Heemskerke's ship, with Barentz on board, was sepa-
rated from its comrade and Jan Rijp. Undeterred,
however, by storm or danger, they turned northward
once more,and on July 17th reached the west coast of
Nova Zembla,which, in memory of the English sailor,
theynamed WilloughbyLand. On the I9th,theirway
was again blocked by ice, compelling them to change
their course. Finally, after many hardships, they
found themselves by the end of August surrounded
by the ice-pack. For the story of the winter, with
its cold, poverty, misery and grief, we can quote from
the journal of Gerrit de Veer, who was the second
mate. On August 3oth the masses of ice began to
pile up around the ship; the snow fell thickly;
the ship was lifted up by the pressure of the ice
so that all about her and around her began to
crack and split. It seemed as if the ship must
break into a thousand pieces, a thing most ter-


rible to see and hear, and fit to make one's hair
stand on end." She soon began to crack, and the
crew were set to work landing provisions, sails, gun-
powder, lead, arquebusses and arms, and building a
hut to shelter themselves from the snow and from the
attacks of the bears. On September I Ith, the whole
bay was filled with blocksof ice, and Barentzresolved
to build a house there which would contain them all.
Fortunately, they found whole trees that drifted
ashore, and these supplied them not only with timber
for the house, but with firewood. It is worthyof note

RENTZ-i596. 29

On September 23d, the carpenter died, and was
interred the next day on the cleft of a mountain, it
being impossible to put a spade in the ground on
account of the severity of the frost. The following
days were devoted to the transportation of driftwood
and the building of the house. To cover it in it was
necessary to demolish the fore and aft cabins of the
ship. The roof was put on October 2d, and a piece
of frozen snow was set up like a May pole. On
September 31st there was a strong wind from the
north-west, and as far as the eye could reach the sea


that these brave Dutchmen were the first to winter
in these inhospitable regions. They had heard no
accounts of what the winter would be; they could
not picture the sufferings that threatened them. They
bore everything with admirable patience, without a
single murmur, and without any breach of discipline,
The heroic example they set has been a guiding star
to other explorers who have had to pass the dreary
winter in the Arctic wastes, and is one that ought
never to be forgotten. The narrative of De Veer
tells the tale of courage, suffering and death in
words so simple that all can understand, and in a
style so touching that additions only spoil it.

was entirely open and without ice. But we re-
mained as though taken and arrested intheice, and
the ship was raised full two orthree feet uponthe ice,
and we could imagine nothing else but that the water
must be frozen quite to the bottom, although it was
three fathoms and a half in depth." On October 12th
they began to sleep in the house, although it was not
completed. On the 21st, the greater part of the
provisions, furniture, and everything which might be
wanted was withdrawn from the ship, for they felt
certain that the sun was about to disappear. A
chimney was fixed in the centre of the room; inside a
Dutch clock was hung up; bed places were formed


along the walls,.and a wine cask was converted into
a bath, for the surgeon had wisely prescribed to the
men frequent bathing as a preservative of health.
The quantity of snow which fell during this winter
was really marvellous. The house disappeared en-
tirely beneath this thick covering, which, however,
sensibly raised the temperature within. Every time
that they wished to go forth, the Dutchmen were
obliged to hollow out a long corridor beneath the
snow. Each night they first heard the bears and then
the foxes, which walked upon the top of the dwelling'
and tried to tear off some planks from the roof that
they might get into the house. So the sailors were
accustomed to climb into the chimney, whence, as
from a watch-tower, they could shoot the animals


and drive them off. They had manufactured a great
number of snares, into which fell numbers of blue
foxes, the valuable fur of which served as a protec-
tion against cold, while their flesh enabled the sailors
to economize their provisions. Always cheerful
and good-tempered, they bore equally well the tire-
someness of the long polar night and the severity of
the cold, which was so extreme that, during two or
three days, when they had not been able to keep so
large a fire as usual, on account of the smoke being
driven back again by the wind, it froze so hard in
the house that the walls and the floor were covered
with ice to the depth of two fingers, even in the cots
where these poor people were sleeping. It was nec-
essary to thaw the sherry when it was served out, as
was done every two days, at the rate of half a pint.
On the 7th of December, the rough weather con-
tinued, with a violent storm coming from the north-

east, which produced horrible cold. We knew no
means of guarding ourselves against it, and while we
were consulting together what we could do for the
best, one of our men, in this extreme necessity, pro-
posed to make use of the coal which we had brought
from the ship into our house, and to make a fire of
it, because it burns with great heat and lasts a long
time. In the evening we lighted a large fire of this
coal, which threw out a great heat, but we did not
provide against what might happen, for, as the heat
revived us completely, we tried to retain it fora long
time. To this end, we thought it well to stop up all
the doorsand the chimney to keep in all the delight-
ful warmth. And thus, each went to repose in his
cot, and, animated by the acquired warmth, we dis-
coursed long together. But, in the end, we were
seized with giddiness in the head; some, however,
more than others. This was first perceived to be
the case with one of our men who was ill and who
for this reason, had less power of resistance. And
we also ourselves were sensible of great pain which
attacked us, so several of the bravest came out of
their cots and began by unstopping the chimney and
afterwards opening the door. But the man who
opened the door fainted, and fell senseless upon the
snow, on perceiving which I ran to him, and found
him lying on the ground in a fainting fit. I went in
haste to seek for some vinegar, and with it I rubbed
his face until le recovered from his swoon. After-
wards, when we were somewhat restored, the cap-
tain gave to each a little wine, in order to comfort
our hearts.
"On the IIth, the weather continued fine, but so
extremely cold that no one who had not felt it could
imagine it; even our shoes, frozen to our feet, were
as hard as horn, and inside they were covered with
ice in such a manner that we could no longer use
them. The garments which we wore were quite
white with frost and ice."
On Christmas Day, December 25th, the weather
was as rough as on the preceding days. The foxes
made havoc upon the house, which one of the sailors
declared to be a bad omen, and upon being asked
why he said so, answered, Because we cannot put
them in a pot, oron the spit, which would have been
a good omen."
If the year 1596 had closed with excessive cold, the
commencement of 1597 was not more agreeable.
Most violent storms of snow and hard frost prevented
the Dutchmen from leaving the house. They cele-
brated Twelfth-night with gayety, as is related in the
simple and touching narrative of Gerrit de Veer.





'' '

~i" d
;1 : ~



this purpose, we besought the captain to allow us a
little diversion in the midst of our sufferings, and to
let us use a part of the wine which was destined to
be served out to us every other day. Having two
pounds of flour, we made some pancakes, with oil,
and each one brought a white biscuit, which we
soaked in the wine and eat. And it seemed to us
that we were in our own country, and among our
relations and friends; and we were as much diverted
as if a banquet had been given in our honor, so much
did we relish our entertainment. We also made a
Twelfth-night King, by means of paper, and our
master gunner was king of Nova Zembla, which is a
country enclosed between two seas, and of the great
length of 600 miles."
After January 21st the foxes became less nu-
merous, the bears reappeared, and daylight began to
increase,which enabled the Dutchmen,who had been
so long confined to the house, to go out a little. On
the 24th, one of the sailors, who had been long ill,
died, and was buried in the snow at some distance
from the house. On the 28th, the weather beingfine,
the men all went out, walking about, running for ex-
ercise, and playing at bowls, to take off the stiffness
of their limbs, for they were extremely weak, and
nearly all suffering from scurvy. They were so much
enfeebled that they were obliged to go to work sev-
eral times before they could carry to their house the
wood which was needful. At length,in the first days
of March, after several tempests and driving snow-
storms, they were able to verify the fact that there
was no ice in the sea. Nevertheless, the weather
was still rough, and the cold glacial. It was not feas-
ible, as yet, to put to sea again, the rather because
the ship was still embedded in the ice. On the I5th
of April the sailors paid a visit to her, and found
her in fairly good condition.
At the beginning of May the men became some-
what impatient, and asked Barentz if he were not
soon intending to make the necessary preparations
for departure. But Barentz answered that he must
wait until the end of the month, and then, if it should
be impossible to set the ship free, he would take
measures to prepare the long-boats and the launch,
and to render them fit for a sea voyage. On the 2oth
of the month the preparations for departure com-
menced-with what joy and ardor it is easy to im-
agine. Thelaunch wasrepaired,thesailswere mended,
and both boats were dragged to the sea and provis-
ions put on board. Then, seeing that the water was
free and that a strong wind was blowing, Heems-
kerke went to see Barentz, who had been long ill,

and declared to him "that it seemed good to him to
set out from thence, and in God's name to commence
the voyage and abandon Nova Zembla."
William Barentz had before this written a paper
setting forth how we had started from Holland to go
towards the kingdom of China, and all that had hap-
pened, in order that if by chance some one should
come after us it might be known what had befallen
us. This note he enclosed in the case of a musket,
which he hung up in the chimney."
On the 3th of June, 597, the Dutchmanabandoned
the ship, which had not stirred from her icy prison,
and, commending themselves to the protection of
God, the two open boats put to sea. They reached
the Orange Islands, and again descended the west-
ern coast of Nova Zembla, in the midst of cease-
lessly recurring dangers.
On the 20th of June, Nicholas Andrien became
very weak, and we saw clearly that he would soon
expire. The lieutenant of the governor came on
board our launch and told us that Nicholas Andrien
was very much indisposed, and that it was very evi-
dent that his days would soon end. Upon which
William Barentz said, 'It appears to me that my
life also will be very short.' We did not imagine
that Barentz was so ill,for we were chatting together,
and William Barentz was looking at the little chart
which I had made of our voyage, and we had various
discourses together. Finally he laid down the chart
and said to me, 'Gerard,give me something to drink.'
After he had drunk such weakness supervenedthat
his eyes turned in his head, and he died so suddenly
that we had not time to call the captain, who was in
the otherboat. This death of William Barentz sad-
dened us greatly, seeing that he was our principal
leader and our sole pilot, in whom we had placed our
whole trust. But we could not oppose the will of
God,and this thought quieted usa little." Thusdied
the illustrious Barentz, like his successors, Franklin
and Hall, in the midst of his discoveries. In the
measured and sober words of the short funeral ora-
tion of Gerrit de Veer may be perceived the affection,
sympathy and confidence which this brave sailor had
been able to inspire in his unfortunate companions.
Barentz is one of the glories of Holland, so prolific
in brave and skilful navigators. We shall mention
presentlywhat has been done to honor his memory.
Through a succession of difficulties the two open
boats pursued their course, passing the so-called Isle
of Crosses where they found duck eggs. In July they
met some Russian vessels, who gave them some help
and provisions,which saved the Dutch from dyingof

U7FTTAI T r7 AAlTT 7 AT'7 t

hunger. When they reached Cape Kanin, on the
other side of the White Sea, they heard from some
fishermen that some countrymen of theirs were at
Kola, just ready to put to sea. They therefore dis-
patched thither one of their men, accompanied by a
Laplander, who returned in three days with a letter
signed Jan Rijp. The poor sailors could scarcely
believe their eyes when they saw the signature of the
comrade from whom they had parted theyear before,
and were only convinced when they had compared
it with others which Heemskerke had in his posses-
sion. But the good news was true news, and on Sep-
tember 3oth Rijp arrived with a boatload of pro-
visions,and took his old companions back tothe Kola
River. He was much surprised at the accounts they
gave him of their long voyage of 1,200 miles, and al-
lowed them some days of repose before starting home-
ward. Wholesome and abundant food refreshed them
after their fatigues and cleared off the remains of
scarvy. With his rescued friends, Jan Rijp left the
Kola River, and on November Ist arrived at the city
of Amsterdam. We had on," says Gerrit de Veer,
"the same garments which we wore in Nova Zembla,
having on our heads caps of white fox-skin, and we
repaired to the house of PeterHasselear,who had been
one of the guardians of the town of Amsterdam charg-
ed with presiding over the fitting out of the two ships
of Jan Rijp and of our own captain. Arrived at his
house, in the midst of general astonishment, because
that we had been long thought dead, and this report
had been spread throughout the town, the news of our
arrival reached the palace of the Prince, where there
were then at table the Chancellor, and the Ambas-
sador of the high and mighty King of Denmark
and Norway, of the Goths and Vandals. We were
then brought before them by the 'Schout' two lords
of the town, and we gave to the said lord Ambas-
sador, and to their lordships the burgomasters, a
narrative of our voyage. Afterwards each of us
retired to his own house. Those who had not dwel-
lings in the town, were lodged in an inn until such
time as we had received our money, when each went
his own way. These are the names of the men who
returned from this voyage: Jacob Heemskerke, clerk
and captain,Peter Petersen Vos,Gerrit de Veer, mate,
Jan Vos, surgeon, Jacob Jansen Sterrenberg, Leonard
Henry, Laurence William, Jan Hillebrants, Jacob
Jansen Hoochwout, Peter Corneille, Jacob de Buisen,
and Jacob Everts." Most of these names are still
known in this good city of New Amsterdam.
Of all these brave sailors we have nothing further
\o record except that De Veer published the follow-


~j159 ^--jSYu. 33

ing year the narrative of his voyage, and that Heems-
kerke after having made several cruises to India, re-
ceived in 1607 the command of a fleet of twenty-six
vessels, at the head of which, on the 25th of April, he
had a severe battle with the Spaniards under the guns
of Gibraltar, in which battle, although the Dutch
were the conquerors, Heemskerke lost his life.
The spot where the unfortunate Barentz and
his companions had wintered was not revisited
until 1871, nearly 300 years aftertheir time. Thefirst
to double the northern point of Nova Zembla,Barentz
had remained alone in the achievement until this pe-
riod. On the 7th of September, 1871, the Norwegian,
Captain Elling Carlsen,well known by his numerous
voyages in the NorthSea,andthe Frozen Ocean,arriv-
ed at the ice haven of Barentz,and on the 9th he dis-
coveredthehouse whichhadsheltered the Dutchmen.
It was in such a wonderful state of preservation,that
it seemed to have been built but a day,and everything
was found in the same position as at the departure of
the shipwrecked crew. Bears, foxes and other crea-
tures inhabitingthese inhospitable regions had alone
visited the spot. Around the house were standing
some large puncheons and there were heaps of seal,
bear, and walrus bones. Inside everything was
in its place It was the faithful reproduction
of the curious engraving of Gerrit de Veer. The
bed-places were arranged along the partition as
well as the clock, the muskets, and the hal-
berd. Among the household utensils, the arms,
and variousobjectsbrought awayby Captain Carlsen,
we may mention two copper cooking pans, some
goblets, gun-barrels, augers and chisels, a pair of
boots, nineteen cartridge-cases, of which some were
still filled with powder, the clock, a flute, some locks
and padlocks, twenty-six pewter candlesticks, some
fragments of engravings, and three books in Dutch,
one of which, the last edition of Mendoza's History
of China," shows the goal which Barentz sought in
this expedition, and a Manual of Navigation,"
proves the care taken by the pilot to keep himself
well up in all professional matters.
Upon his return to the Portof Hammerfest,Captain
Carlsen met with a Dutchman, W. Lister Kay, who
purchased the Barentz relics, and forwarded them
to the authorities of the Netherlands. These ob-
jects have been placed in the Naval Museum at
The Hague where a house, open in front, has been
constructed precisely similar to the one represented
in the drawing of Gerrit de Veer, and each object
or instrument brought back has been placed in the
very position which it occupied in the house in Nova.


Zembla. Surrounded by all the respect and affec-
tion which they merit, these precious witnesses of
a maritime event so important as the first win-
tering in the Arctic regions, these touching reminis-
cences of Barentz, Heemskerke and their rough
companions, constitute one of the most interesting
monuments in the museum. Beside the clock is placed
a copper dial,through the middle of which a meridian
is drawn. This curious dial, invented by Plancius,

which served without doubt to determine the varia-
tions of the compass, is now the only example extant
of a nautical instrument which has never been invery
general use. For this reason it is as precious as,
from another pointof view, are the flute used by Ba-
rentz, and the shoes of the poor sailor who died dur-
ing the winter sojourn. It is impossible to behold
this curious collection without experiencing poign-
ant emotion.



A LOOK at the map of the Arctic regions shows us
that the whole European and Asiatic shores of the
Polar Ocean are possessed by one great power, name-
ly, Russia; and the readers of the previous chapters
will remember that it was the kindness of Russian
traders and fishermen that lentaid and support to the
English and Dutch explorers in the darkest hours of
their distress. It is now our task to give somesketch
of the labors of Russian travellers in the inhospitable
The geographical position of Russia compelled its
northern tribes to search for an outlet for its trade
through the rivers that flow into the Arctic Sea,
while the frugal habits of the Russians and their ex-
perience of the rigorous climate of the north, ren-
dered them especially fitted for explorers in the snow-
covered regions of thick-ribbed icewhich extend from

the North Cape to tie waters that separate Asia from
America. This narrow piece of water is known to us
all as Behring's Strait; and we shall now proceed to
give a brief account of its famous discoverer.
Vitus Behring, or Bering, as he spelled his name,
was a Dane by birth, born in the year I68I, who very
early in life went to sea, and made several voyages to
the East Indies. In one of these voyages he made
the acquaintance of a Norwegian sailor,Admiral Con-
go, of the Russian navy, and by his advice Behring
entered the service of the Czar,becoming asub-lieu-
tenant in the navy in his twenty-second year. He
rose steadily in his profession, and in I72owas acap-
tain of the second rank. In 1724 he was appointed
chief of the Kamchatkan Expedition,and was charged
with the task of ascertaining whether Asia and
America were connected by land.
The expedition started from St. Petersburg, Feb. 5,
1725, and passed the first summer in traversing Si-
beria; the winter was spent in Ilenisk; and the sec-
ond summer saw the exploring party working its way
eastward, till it reached Okhotsk, in October. Not,
however, till midsummer, 1728, did Behring arrive at
the spot where his test task was to begin. This was
a palisaded fort in Kamchatka, surrounded by a few
huts, and occupied by a handful of Cossack. The
fort was twenty miles from the sea, and surrounded
by forests of larch.
Here, in 1728, he built a ship called the Gabriel,
The timber was dragged down to the shore by dogs,
the tar the explorers made themselves, while the cord-
age, cables and anchors had been brought nearly
two thousand miles, through oneof the most desolate
regions of the earth. Their provisions were chiefly
dried fish and fish oil. On July 9th, the Gabrielstarted


her crew consisted of forty-four men, of whom nine
were soldiers. Her course was nearly all the time
along the coast; and on August Ith, a month after
the beginning of the voyage, she sighted St. Lawrence
Island, in latitude 640 20', and thus was in the strait
that separated the Western from the Eastern hemi-
sphere. On August 15th, Behring determined to turn
back, and on September 2d entered the Kamchatka
River. Behring turned back because he felt sure that

explored higher to the north than Cape Blanco in
During the winter of 1728-29, which Behring spent
in the Kamchatka fort, he heard from the natives that
there was land away to the east, with large rivers and
forests of high trees, and that midway lay an island
which was visible in clear weather. He started out
to find it, but again luck was against him, and storms
drove him back.


he had sailed round the north-eastern corner of
Asia, and was convinced that it was possible to sail
from the Lena River to Kamchatka, and thence to
Japan and the East Indies.
At the mo't northern spot that Behring reached,
the strait is 39 miles wide, and hence, under favorable
circumstances, he might have seen the American
shore. Unfortunately, the weather, during the whole
time, was dark and cloudy. Behring has been blamed
for not cruising about to the eastward in search of
land, but it must be remembered that his orders were
to discover a passage from the mouth of the Lena to
the Pacific, and that the American coast had not been

On his return to St. Petersburg, in 1730, he did not
receive the warm welcome he hoped for, and, indeed,
doubts of his statements were freely expressed. To
justify his reports, he resolved to make further explo-
rations, on a larger scale; and, accordingly, presented
his plans to the Admiralty; in one of these he pro-
posed to explore the west coast of America, and to
chart the Arctic coast of Siberia, from the Obi to the
Lena. In 1732, after weary years of waiting, the Rus-
sian Senate approved of his plans, and in the follow-
ing year the expedition began to set out from the
Capital. The whole expedition comprised 570 men,
but of these only three officers and 157 men were as-


signed to the Arctic Exploration. It required great
inducements to obtain officers, for, in St. Petersburg,
the expedition was looked on as a mild sort of ban-
ishment, while the rank and file were threatened with
all kinds of cruel punishments. We need not detail
his long and tiresome march through Siberia, but in
October, 1734, he was in Gakutsk, where he built two
vessels the Gakutsk, a sloop, and a decked boat Ir-
kutsk. The latter, under the command of a Swede,
named Lassenius, reached the Lena delta, August 2,
1736, and near this uninhabited spot he prepared to
pass the winter. He built a house from some drift-
wood, but had to reduce the rations served out to his
men. On November 6th the Polar night began, and
shortly after the whole crew was attacked by scurvy,
and so severe and deadly was the disease, that Las-
senius and most of his men perished, only eight sur-
vivors being found alive by the party sent by Behring
to assist them.
The unfortunate result of this expedition, while it
injured Behring in
.---- the opinion of the
Russian Govern-
L ment, did not in-
terrupt the series
...- -'"'' ,' of Arctic explora-
;-- .tions which, be-
..tween the years
--1734 and I743,
'"'. were pushed on in
six different direc-
For a whole de-
cade these dis-
l coverers struggled
Switch all the obsta-
e les which a terri-
S ble climate and the
resources of a half
developed country
obliged them to
contend with. They
surmounted these
A obstacles. The ex-
peditions were re-
newed two, three
____.__ --yes, even four
times. If the ves-
sels were frozen in they were hauled upon shore the
next spring, repaired, and the expedition continued.
And if these intrepid fellows were checked in their
course by masses of impenetrable ice, they continued

their explorations on dog sledges, which here for the
first time were employed in Arctic exploration. Cold,
scurvy, and every degree of discomfort wrought sad
havoc among them, but many survived the long polar
winter in miserable
wooden huts or --
barracks. Nowhere -
has Russian hardi-
ness erected for
itself a more en-
during monument.
It was especially
the projecting
points and penin-
sulas in this region
that caused these
explorers innumer-
ab le difficulties.
These points and -
capes had hitherto I
been unknown, for hi
crude maps of this -
period represented a h
the Arctic coast of A
Siberia as almost a
straight line. It k
was first necessary .
for the navigators -
to send carto-
graphers to these -
regions, build bea-
cons and sea-
marks, establish magazines, collect herds of reindeer
which, partly as an itinerant food supply and partly to
be used as an eventual means of conveyance, fol-
lowed the vessels along the coast, while here and
there, especially on the Taimyr peninsula, small fish-
ing stations were established for supplying the
It is necessary to dwell a little longer on these ex-
peditions. Their main object was not so much the
charting of northern Siberia, as the discovery and
navigation of the north-east passage. From this point
of view alone they must be considered. They were
an indirect continuation of the West European expe-
ditions for the same purpose, but far more rational
than these. For this reason, Behring had, on his ex-
peditions (1725-30), first sought that thoroughfare
between the two hemispheres, without which a north-
east and a north-west passage could not exist. For
this reason also he had, on his far-sighted plan, under-
taken the navigation of the Arctic seas where this had

not already been done, and for this same reason the
Admiralty sought carefully to link together their ex-
plorations to the West European termini, on the coast
of Nova Zembla.
A north-east passage alone promised the empne
such commercial and political advantages that the
enormous expenditures and the frightful hardships
which these expeditions caused Siberia might
be justified.
In 1740 Behring had sailed from the
harbor of Okhotsk, and in the latter part of
September had entered Avocha Bay, where
he built a fort which was named after his
two ships, the St. Peter and the St. Paul,
and is now the town of Petropaulovski.
From this harbor he set out in May of the
following year, he himself being in command
of the St. Peter, and Lieutenant Chirikoff in
command of the St. Paul. The expedition
was accompanied by the famous naturalist
Stetter, to whom we owe much of our knowl-
edge of the wild animals of the region.
After a prayer service, the ships weighed
anchoron the 4th of June, 1741. According
to the plan adopted, a south-easterly course
was taken, and in spite of some unfortunate
friction, Behring gave Chirikoff the lead, so
as to leave him no cause of complaint. They
kept their course until the afternoon of June
12th, when they found themselves, after hav-
ing sailed over six hundred miles in a south-
easterly direction, in latitude 46 9' N. and
14 30' east of Avocha. According to their
maps they should long before have come
to the coasts of Gamaland, but as they only
saw sea and sky, Behring. gave the command
to turn back. With variable and unfavor-
able winds, they worked their way, during
the few succeeding days, in a north north-
east direction up to latitude 490 30', where
Chirikoff, on the 20th of June, in storm and
fog, left Behring, and sailed east north-east
in the direction of the American coast with-
out attempting to keep with the St. Peter.
This was the first real misfortune of the ex-
pedition. For 48 hours Behring kept close to the
place of separation in hopes of again joining the St.
Paul, and, as this proved fruitless, he convened a ship's
council, at which it was decided to give up all further
search for the St. Paul. It was also resolved, in order
to remove every doubt, to sail again to the 46th de-
gree to find Gamaland. Having arrived here, some

y f-J -LJ. .j. IJjvu (11 U


ings gave them no clew to land, although they were
sailing almost parallel with this chain of islands.
Behring, however, was now confined to his cabin,
The troubles he had passed through, his sixty years
of age, and the incipient stages of scurvy, had crushed
his powers of resistance, while his officers, Waxel and
Khitroff, dismissed Steller's observations with scornful

P7 PPJ-IP A7- A ATT) 42L'LI- T ,' I- C AI

Sj42"ltl tlfl j id l. 2y37

birds were seen, whereupon they continued their
course, but without any results. During the four suc-
ceeding weeks the ship's course was between north
and east, towards the western continent, but, as on
their southern course they had come out upon the
depths of Tuscarora, which, several thousand fathoms
deep, run right up to the Aleutian reef, their sound-


sarcasm. Not until the 12th of July did they take any
precautions against running ashore. They took in
some of the sails during the night and hove to. They
had then been on the sea about six weeks. Their
supply of water was about half gone, and,according to
the ship's calculations, they had sailed 46 from the
meridian of Avocha. The ship's council therefore
concluded, on the 13th of July,to sail due north, head-
ing north north-east, and at noon on the 16th of July
they finally saw land to the north. The country was
elevated, the coast was jagged, covered with snow,
inhospitable, and girt with islands, behind which a
snow-capped mountain-peak towered so high into the
clouds that it could be seen at distance of seventy
miles. "I do not remember," saysSteller, "of having
seen a higher mountain in all Siberia and Kam-
chatka." This mountain was the volcano St. Elias,
which is about i8,ooo feet high. Behring had thus
succeeded in discovering America from the east. As
theyhad a head wind,they moved very slowly towards
the north, and not until the morning of the 20th did
they cast anchor off the western coast of an island,
which they called St. Elias inhonor of the patron saint
of the day. On the same day, Khitroff, with fifteen
men, went in the ship's boat to search for a harbor
andtoexplorethe island and its nearestsurroundings.
Steller, who had desired to accompany him, was put
ashore with the crew that brought fresh water from
St. Elias, and endeavored, as well as it was possible
in a few hours, to investigate the natural history of
the island. Khitroff circumnavigated the island and
found various traces of human habitation. Thus,
on one of the adjacent islands atimbered house was
found containing fireplace, a bark basket, a wooden
spade, some mussel shells and a whetstone, which
apparently had been used for sharpening copper im-
plements. In an earth hut,another detachment found
some smoked fish, a broken arrow, the remains of a
fire, and several otherthings. Thecoastofthe main-
landwhichwas mountainous with snow-capped peaks
was seen at a distance of eight miles. A good
harbor was found on the north side of thelarge island.
All the islands were covered with trees, but these
were so low and slender that timber available for
yards was not to be found. In his venturesome wan-
derings here, only now and then accompanied by a
Cossack, Steller penetrated these woods, where he
discovered a cellar which contained articles of food
and various implements. As some of these things
were sent on board, Behring, by wayof indemnifica-
tion, caused an iron kettle to be placed there, a pound
of tobacco, a Chinese pipe, and a piece of silk cloth.

It was the night between the 5th and 6th of No-
vember that the St. Peter reached this coast. On
the 6th the weather was.calm and clear, butthe crew
were kept on board from weakness and work, and
only Steller could go ashore with a few of the sick.
They immediately betook themselves to examining
the country, and walked along the coast on either
side. Was this an island, or was it the mainland ?
Could they expect to find human assistance,and could
they reach home by land ? After two days of explor-
ation, Steller succeeded in satisfying himself on these
points, although it was nearly six months before he
definitely ascertained that the place was an island.
Unlike Kamchatka, the country was treeless, having
only a few trailing willows of the thickness of a fin-
ger. Theanimals of the coast were entirely new and
strange, even to him, and showed no fear whatever.
They had no sooner left the ship than they saw sea-
otters, which they first supposed to be bears or glut-
tons. Arctic foxes flocked about them in such num-
bers that they could strike down three or four score
of them in a couple of hours. The most valuable fur-
bearing animals stared at them curiously, and along
the coast Steller saw with wonderment whole herds of
sea-cows grazing on the luxuriant algae of the strand.
Not only had he never seen this animal before, but
even his Kamchatka Cossack did not know it. From
this fact Steller concluded that the island must be un-
inhabited. As the trend of Kamchatka was not the
same as that of the islands, and as the flora was
nevertheless identical, and as he moreover found a
window-frame of Russian workmanship that had
been washed ashore, he was convinced that the
country must be a hitherto unknown island in the
vicinity of Kamchatka. Behring shared this view,but
the other officers still clung to their illusions, and
when Waxel, on the evening of the 6th, came ashore,
he even spoke of sending a message for conveyance.
Steller, on the other hand, began to make prepara-
tions for the winter. In the sand-banks, near an ad-
jacent stream, he and his companions dug a pit and
made a roof of driftwood and articles of clothing. To
cover up cracks and crevices on the sides, they piled
up the foxes they had killed. Steller exerted himself
to obtain wild fowl, seal-beef and vegetable nourish-
ment for the sick, who were gradually taken ashore
and placed under sail tents upon the beach. Their
condition was terrible. Some died on deck as soon
as they were removed from the close air of their
berths, others in the boat, as they were being taken
ashore, and still others on the coast itself. All at-
tempts at discipline were abandoned, and those who


were well, grouped themselves into small companies,
according as they liked best. The sick and dying
were seen on every hand. Some complained of the
cold, others of hunger and thirst, and the majority of
them were so afflicted with scurvy that their gums,
like a dark brown sponge, grew over
and entirely covered their teeth. The
dead before they could be buried were
devoured by foxes, which in count-
less numbers flocked about, not even
fearing to attack the sick.
More than a week elapsed before
the last of the sick were taken ashore.
On November ioth the commander
was removed. He was well protected
against the influence of the outer air,
and was laid for the night under a
tent on the strand. It snowed heav-
ily. Steller passed the evening with
him and marveled at his cheerfulness
and his singular contentment. They
weighed the situation, and discussed
the probability of their whereabouts.
Behring was no more inclined than
Steller to think that they had reached
Kamchatka, or that their ship could
be saved. The next day he was car-
ried on a stretcher to the sand pits
and placed in one of the huts by the
side of Steller's. The few men that
were able to work sought to construct
huts for all. Driftwood was collected,
pits were dug and roofed, and pro-
visions were brought from the ship.
Steller was both cook and physician
-the soul of the enterprise. On No-
vember I3th, the barrack to be used
as a hospital was completed, and
thither the sick were immediately re-
moved. But still the misery kept in-
creasing. Steller had already given
up all hopes of Behring's discovery.
Waxel, who had been able to keep up
as long as they were at sea, now hov-
ered between life and death. There
was special anxiety on account of his
low condition, as he was the only com-
petent seaman that still had any influence, since
Khitroff, by his hot and impetuous temper, had in-
curred the hatred of all. Moreover, those sent to
reconnoitre, returned with the news that in a west-
erly direction they could find no connection with

Kamchatka or discover the slightest trace of hu-
man habitation. It became stormy; for several
days the boat could not venture out, and the ship,
their only hope, lay very much exposed near a rocky
shore. The anchor was not a very good one, and


there was great danger that the vessel would be
driven out to sea or be dashed to pieces on the rocks.
The ten or twelve able-bodied men that were left,
being obliged to stand in icy water half a day at a
time, soon gave way under such burdens. Sickness


and want were on every hand. Despair stared them
in the face, and not till November 25th, when the
vessel was driven clear ashore and its keel buried
deep in the sand, did their condition seem more se-
cure. They then went quietly to work to prepare for
the winter.
In December the whole crew was lodged in five
underground huts (dugouts) on the bank of the stream
near the place of landing. The ship's provisions
were divided in such a way that every man daily re-
ceived a pound of flour and some groats, until the

numbered twelve, the majority of whom died during
the last days of the voyage. During the landing and
immediately afterwards nine more were carried away.
The next death did not occur till November 22d. It
was the excellent and worthy mate, the seventy-year-
old Andreas Hesselberg who had plowed the sea for
fifty years, and whose advice, had it been heeded,
would have saved the expedition. Then came no
less than six deaths in rapid succession; and finally
in December the commander and another officer
died. The last death occurred January 6, 1742. In

I W11._

"W-R! .
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$- .- -

supply was exhausted. But they had to depend
principally upon the chase, and subsisted almost ex-
clusively upon the above mentioned marine animals
and a stranded whale. Each hut constituted a family
with its own economical affairs, and daily sent out
one party to hunt and another to carry wood from
the strand. In this way they succeeded in struggling
through the winter, which on Behring Island is more
characterized by raging snowstorms than severe cold.
Meanwhile death made sad havoc among them.
Before they reached Behring Island their dead

all thirty-one men out of seventy-seven died on this
ill-starred expedition.
When Behring exerted his last powers to prevent
the stranding of the St. Peter, he struggled for life.
Before leaving Okhotsk he had contracted a malig-
nant ague, which diminished his powers of resistance,
and on the voyage to America scurvy was added to
this. His sixty years of age, his heavy build, the
trials and tribulations he had experienced, his sub-
dued courage, and his disposition to quiet and inac-
tivity, all tended to aggravate this disease; but he

- -- II -- ------------------~n


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"would nevertheless," says Steller, without doubt
have recovered if he could have gotten back to Avo-
cha, where he could have obtained proper nourish-
ment and enjoyed the comfort of awarm room." In a
sand-pit on the coastof Behring Island, his condition
was hopeless. For blubber, the only medicine at
hand, he had an unconquerable loathing. Nor was
the frightful sufferings he saw about him, his chagrin
caused by the fate of the expedition, and his anxiety
for the future of his men, at all calculated to check
his disease. From hunger, cold, and grief he slowly
pined away. He was, so to speak, buried alive.
The sand kept continually rolling down upon him
from the sides of the pit and covered his feet. At
first this was removed, but finally he asked that it
might remain, as if furnished him with a little of the
warmth he so sorely needed. Soon half of his body was
under the sand, so that after his death his comrades
had to exhume him to give him a decent burial." He
died on the 8th of December, 1741, two hours before
daybreak, from inflammation of the bowels.
"Sad as his death was," says Steller, "that intre-
pidity and seriousness with which he prepared to meet
death was most worthy of admiration." He thanked
God for having been his guide from youth, and for

having given him success through life. He sought in
every way possible to encourage his companions in
misfortune to hopeful activity, and inspire them with
faith in Providence and the future. Notwithstand-
ing his conviction that they had been cast upon the
shores of an unknown land, he was not disposed to
discourage the others by expressing himself on this
point. On the 9th of December his body was interred
in the vicinity of the huts, between the graves of the
second mate and the steward. At the departure from
the island a plain wooden cross was placed upon the
grave, which also served to show that the island be-
longed to the Russian crown. This cross was re-
newed several times, and in the sixties, so far as is
known, twenty-four men erected a monument to
his honor in the governor's garden, the old church-
yard, in Petropaulovsk, where a monument to the
unfortunate La P6rouse is also found, and where
Cook's successor, Captain Clerke, found his last
We have given at some length the story of poo'
Behring's voyages and death, as he was one of thi
early explorers who is most intimately connected
with our territory of Alaska, and the sea which-
bears his name.



IN 1743, the British legislature stimulated the en-
thusiasm of the nation, and recalled the attention of
British seamen to the gallant and successful labors
of their ancestors in the Polar World, by the offer
of a reward of 20,000 for the discovery of the
North-west Passage. Several voyages were accord-
ingly undertaken, though not with successful issues,
and these were chiefly made through Behring Strait
to the east, in the belief that an open sea lay be-
tween it and Hudson Bay.
Between 1769 and 1772 the intrepid Hearne made
three land journeys to the American shore of the
Frozen Ocean. In the last of these he discovered
the Coppermine River, which he traced to its source.
In 1773 Captain Phipps (afterwards Lord Mulgrave),
was sent out by the Admiralty with orders to make
for the North Pole, as his primary object, and to take
all such magnetic and meteorological observations,
and to collect all such scientific data as might possess
a distinctive value, as his secondary object. Phipps
took the Spitzbergen route, but pentrated no further

north than 80 48'. Nelson served as a midshipman
on board this expedition, and met with the charac-
teristic adventure with a Polar bear which Southey
has described so pleasantly.
Baffled but not discouraged, the British Parlia-
ment now offered (in 1776) in addition to its pre-
vious proposal, a sum of 20,000 for the actual dis-
covery of the Pole, a similar sum for the discovery
of any communication between the North Atlantic
and North Pacific, and 5,000 to any person who
should attain to within one degree of the Pole.
The last voyage undertaken by Captain Cook was
in this direction. He passed through Behring Strait
but got no further than 700 45'.
In 1789, the Mackenzie River was discovered by
Sir George Mackenzie. The next name on the glori-
ous record is that of Captain (afterwards Doctor)
William Scoresby, well known as a successful and
adventurous whaler. In one of his voyages (in 1806)
while lying-to for whales in what are called the
' Greenland Seas," on the east side of Greenland, he


resolved to deviate from the beaten track and push
towards the "Polar Sea," in the existence of which he
strongly believed. Forcing his way through the
pack-ice with almost incredible boldness and energy,
he actually succeeded in clearing the formidable bar-
rier and entering "a great openness or
sea of water," reached the high latitude
of 81I 30' N. In no succeeding voyage
did he repeat this remarkable achieve-
ment; but he added largely to our knowl-
edge of the eastern coast of Greenland,
and accumulated much valuable and in-
teresting information on the physical
phenomena and natural history of the
Arctic Regions. His various publica-
tions, moreover, contributed to keep alive
the national interest in the work of mari-
time discovery, and led, more or less
directly, to the celebrated expeditions of
Parry, Ross, and Franklin.
In 1818, the British Government re-
solved on an energetic effort to discover
the long-wished-for passage, and for this
purpose the Isabella and the Alexander
two stout and well-found brigs, were
placed under the orders of Captain John
Ross, an officer who had already had
some experience of the Northern Seas.
The Alexander was commanded by
Lieutenant Parry, a man of strong char-
acter and much scientific ardor. The
two ships sailed on the I8th of April,
1818, and took the usual Baffin Bay
route. In latitude 75 54' N., Ross fell
in with an Esquimau tribe who had never
before seen the white men, and ad-
dressed them with the inquiries, "Who
are you ? Whence come you ? Is it
from the sun or moon ? To these sav-
ages Ross gave the name of Arctic
Highlanders," by no means a compliment
to the hardy Gaels of Caledonia. Farther
north, he came upon a line of cliffs cov-
ered with red snow ; a phenomenon now
known to be due to the abundant pre-
sence in the snow of a minute lichen,
called the Protococcus nivalis.
At the farthest point which he reached,
Ross was too far south to discern more than the out-
line of the land near Smith Sound ; but he named the
bold headlands which guard the entrance to this chan-
nel after his ships, Cape Isabella and Cape Alexander.

Descending the west side of the hay, he found the
waters clear of ice and extremely deep. The land
was high, and the range of mountains, in general, free
from snow. A noble inlet, nearly fifty miles wide,
with cliffs on both sides, now offered itself to view,


and the ships entered it on the 29th of August. But
they had scarcely accomplished thirty miles when
Ross, to the surprise and vexation of his officers, de-
clared that he saw land stretching across the inlet at


a distance of eight leagues, and ordered the ships to
tack about and return. To this imaginary land he
gave the name of Croker Mountains. Parry, on the
other hand, was of opinion that this great inlet, now
recognized as the Sir James Lancaster Sound of
Baffin, was no land-locked bay, but a strait opening
out to the westward; and on the return of the two
ships to England he openly declared his opinion.
The English public supported the ener-
getic Parry; and after a vigorous wordy
warfare, the Government resolved to
place him in charge of the Hecla bomb-
ship, and the Griper gunboat brig, with
which he sailed for the North on the
5th of May, i8i9.
On the 5th of June he came in sightof
Cape Farewell, and then steered north-
ward, up Davis Strait and Baffin Bay, as
far as latitude 73, where he found him-
self hemmed in by masses of ice. On
the 25th, however, a way opened up, and
Parry pushed forward, boldly and ener-
getically, until he reached Lancaster .
Sound. Here he was on the ground
made familiar by the expedition of the
preceding year, and was soon to deter-
mine whether Ross's supposed moun- ...i "'
tains had any real existence. "It is more
easy to imagine than describe," says
Parry, "the almost breathless anxiety
which was now visible on every counte- .
nance, while, as the breeze increased to a
fresh gale, we ran quickly up the sound."
As they advanced the "Croker Moun-
tains" disappeared into "thin air," and
Parry proceeded as far as the mouth of
a great inlet, which he named Barrow
Strait. Enteringthis,hesailed onward to
Prince Regent Inlet, which, with various
capes, bays and islands, he named and
surveyed. Onapproachingthe magnetic
(not the actual) North Pole,he found his
compasses rendered almost useless by
the "dip" or "variation" of the needle. Great was
then the excitement on board the two ships; and
the excitement increased to enthusiasm when, on
September 4th, after crossing the meridian of J 13
W. longitude, Parry announced to his men that
they had earned the Government grant of 5,000.
Two weeks later, they were beset by the ice, and in
the Hecla and Griper Bay, on Melville Island, Parry
resolved to pass the winter. In the following year,

the thaw did not set in until July, and it was August
before Parry released his ships. Then he started
for home, and, on arriving in England, about the
middle of November, 1820, was received with a
hearty welcome.
His success led to his appointment to the com-
mand of another expedition in 1821. His ships, the
Hela and Fury, were equipped with every appliance


that scientific ingenuity could suggest or unlimited
resources provide. They sailed from the Nore on the
8th of May; they returned to the Shetland Isles on
the loth of October, 1823. In the interval-seven and
twenty months-Parryand Lyon (his lieutenant) dis-
covered the Duke of York Bay,numerous islets on the
north-east coast of the American mainland, Winter
Island, the islands of Annatook and Ooght, Hecla
and Fury Strait, Melville Peninsula and Cockburn


Island. A glance at the map will show the reader
how far to the westward these discoveries carried the
boundary of the known region. While encamped on
Winter Island, the English were visited by a party of
Esquimaux, whose settlement they visited in turn.
There they found a group of five snow huts with
canoes, sledges, dogs, and above sixty men, women
and children, as regularly and to all appearance as
permanently fixed as if they had occupied the same
spot the whole winter. The astonishment with which
the English surveyed the exterior aspects of this little
village was not diminished by their admission into
the interior of the huts composing it. Each was con-


structed entirely of snow and ice. After creeping
through two low passages, having each its arched
doorway, the strangers found themselves in a small
circular apartment, of which the roof formed a per-
fect arched dome. From this central apartment three
doorways, also arched, and of larger dimensions than
the outward ones, opened into as many inhabited
apartments, one on each side, and the third opposite
the entrance. Here the women were seated on their
beds, against the wall, each having her little fire-
place or lamp, with all her domestic utensils about
her. The children quickly crept behind their
mothers; the dogs slunk into the corners in dismay.
The construction of the inhabited part of the hut

was similar to that of the outer apartment, being a
dome, formed by separate blocks of snow laid with
great regularity and no small ingenuity, each being
cut into the shape requisite to build up a substantial
arch, from seven to eight feet high in the centre,
and with no other support than this principle of
building supplies. Sufficient light was admitted by
a circular window of ice, neatly fitted into the roof
of each apartment.
We must now return to the year 1819, when the
British Government, in its desire to complete thecon-
quest of the North Pole, resolved on an overland ex-
ploration as supplemental to its efforts by sea. It
was resolved to survey the coast eastward
from the. Coppermine River to Behring
Strait, and for this purpose an expedition
was equipped, consisting of Lieutenant
Franklin as leader, Dr. Richardson as
naturalist, two midshipmen of high char-
acter-Messrs. Hood and Back, and two
picked English seamen.
They arrived at York Factory, Hudson
Bay, on the 3oth of August; left it on the
9th of September; and reached Cumberland
", House, another of the Hudson Bay Com-
pany's settlements, on the 22d of October-
having accomplished a journey of 690 miles
in forty-two days. After resting for a while,
Franklin and Back went forward by them-
y selves to Chipewyan, near the west point of
'r Athabasca Lake in order to superintend the
. preparations being made for their intended
"' adventure. It was a terrible journey. The
cold was frightful, and beyond measure-
ment, because the thermometer was frozen.
Provisions were scarce, and every move-
ment caused intense physical pain. But
moral courage carried them over every
difficulty, and Chipewyan was reached at last.
Here they waited until the rest of the party came
up; and then, attended by a train of Canadian boat-
men and Indians, they moved onward some 500
miles to Fort Enterprise, where a small hut was built
of pine-wood to shelter them during the winter. It
stood on a gentle ascent, at the base of which slept
the frozen current of Waiter River. Here the explor-
ers employed themselves in killing reindeer and in
preparing with their fat and flesh that dried, salted
and pounded comestible called pemmican. About
one hundred and eighty animals were killed. But
even this numberdid not furnish an adequate supply
for Franklin's party; and as the expected stores of

-1 --- '- --




tobacco, ammunition and blankets did not arrive, Mr.
Back, with some Indian and Canadian attendants, re-
turned to Chipewyan for them. Having obtained
them, he once more rejoined the party at Fort Enter-
prise-after an absence of five months and a journey
of 1,104 miles, in snow-shoes and with no other cov-
ering at night in the woods than a blanket and deer-
It was the middle of June, 1821, before the ice
broke up in the Coppermine River. Then Franklin
began his journey, passing down the stream in light

excellent harbors, all or them supplied with small
rivers of fresh water abounding with salmon, trout
and other fish. The survey of George the Fourth's
Coronation Gulf-to adopt Franklin's barbarous no-
menclature-being completed, the explorers prepared
to return to Fort Enterprise. The overland part of
the journey was attended with the most terrible hard-
ships. They suffered from the combined afflictions
of cold, hunger and fatigue. They were so reduced
in bodily strength that it was with difficulty they
could drag along their languid limbs; and when


birch canoes, and occasionally pausing to hunt the
reindeer, musk-oxen and wolves which frequented its
banks. Having reached the mouth of the river, the
twenty adventurers launched their barks into the Polar
Sea, which they found almost tideless and compara-
tively free from ice.
The extreme westward point at which, after many
experiences, Franklin arrived, was situated in lat. 68"
30', and he appropriately named it Point Turnagain.
Between this headland on the east and Cape Barrow
on the west, a deep gulf opens inland as far south as
the Arctic circle. It was found to be studded with
numerous islands, and indented with sounds affording

at last within forty miles of their winter asylum. they
found themselves at their last ration. No food, no
shelter, and the severity of an Arctic winter pressing
upon them! Mr. Back, with three of the stoutest
Canadians, gallantly started forward to seek assist-
ance, and were followed in a few days by Franklin
and seven of the party-leaving the weakest, under
the care of Dr. Richardson and Mr. Hood, to proceed
at leisure. Four of Franklin's companions, however,
soon gave up the attempt from absolute physical in-
capacity. One of them-Michel, an Iroquois-returned
to Dr. Richardson, the others were never again
heard of. Franklin pushed forward, living on berries


and a lichen called itrte-de-roche, and reached the
hut; but it was without an inhabitant, without stores
and blocked up by snow. Here he and his three com-
panions lingered for seventeen days, with no other
food than the bones and skin of the deer which had
been killed the preceding winter, boiled down into a
kind of soup. On October 29th Dr. Richardson and
John Hepburn, one of the seamen, made their appear-
ance. I3ut where were the rest of the party ?
Dr. Richardson had a tragic tale to unfold. He

.,, -., r.'i ",


stated that for the first two days after Franklin's de-
parture his party had nothing to eat. On the third
day Michel arrived with a hare and a partridge, which
afforded each a small morsel. The fourth day they
fasted. On the IIth Michel offered them some flesh,
which he declared to be part of a wolf; but they
afterwards had good reason to suspect it was the
flesh of one of the unfortunate men who had left
Franklin to return to Richardson. They noticed that
Michel daily grew more furtive and insolent, and
were convinced that he had a supply of meat for his

own use. On the 20th, while Hepburn was felling
wood, he heard the report of a gun, and turning
quickly round, saw Michel dart into the tent. Mr.
Hood was found dead; a ball had penetrated the
back of his skull; there could not be the shadow of
a doubt that Michel had fired it. He now grew more
suspicious and impatient of control than ever; and
as he was stronger than any other of the party, and
well armed, they arrived at the conviction that their
safety depended upon his death. I determined," said
Dr. Richardson, as I was thoroughly con-
vinced of the necessity of such a dreadful act,
to take the whole responsibility upon myself;
and immediately upon Michel's coming up I
put an end to his life by shooting him through
the head."
They occupied six days in travelling twenty-
S four miles, existing on lichens and pieces of
Mr. Hood's skin cloak.
On the evening of the 29th they came in
sight of the fort, and at first felt inexpressi-
ble pleasure on seeing the smoke issue from
the chimney. But the absence of any foot-
prints in the snow filled their hearts with
sad forebodings, which were fully realized when
i they entered the hut and saw the wretchedness
That reigned there.
The exploring party was now reduced to
Sfour-Franklin, Richardson, Hepburn and an
Indian; and that these could long survive
seemed impossible, from their absolute weak-
ness and lack of food. Happily, on the 7th of
November three Indians arrived, whom Mr.
'- Back had dispatched from Chipewyan with sup-
plies; and they tended the sufferers carefully
until all were strong enough to return to the
English settlement. And in this way was ac-
complished a journey of 5,500 miles; mostly
over a bleak and barren country and under
an inclement sky, with terrible cost of physi-
cal and mental suffering, and with much loss of
life, but with results which greatly enlarged the
boundaries of geographical knowledge.
Four expeditions-or, more correctly speaking, one
expedition in four divisions-set out from England in
1824. Parry was sent to explore Prince Regent
Inlet; Franklin was ordered to descend the Macken-
zie River to the sea, and then, dividing his party, to
dispatch one half to the eastward, while he led the
other half westward to Behring Strait; Captain
Beechy was commissioned to sail to Behring Strait
via Cape Horn, and thence to Kotzebue Sound, where





- *^-.; <

:~ -,-.- ~
i r:

I- ?:


hewas to wait for Franklin; and Captain Lyon was
directed to keep southward of Southampton Island,
up Rowe's Welcome to Repulse Bay, and across
Melville Isthmus to Point Turnagain. The object
in view, as the reader will surmise, was to ascertain
the exact configuration of the northern shore of the
American continent.
Captain Lyon met with many disasters, and, when
within eight miles of Repulse Bay, was compelled
by the ice-drifts and the adverse winds to abandon
the enterprise.
Parry, with the Hecla and Fury, reached Lancaster
Sound, but, being caught in the ice, was forced to
winter at Port Bowen. In the following season the
Fury was driven ashore by the pressure of accumu-
lated masses of ice, and so damaged that Parry
was obliged to remove her crew and stores to the
Hecla, after which he returned to England.
Franklin was not much more successful. Accom-
panied by Dr. Richardson, Back, and Messrs. Ken-
dall and Drummond, he arrived at Fort Chipewyan
in July, 1825, and thence proceeded to Great Bear
Lake, where he wintered. When the spring returned
he began the descent of Maciecnzie River, and, after

:./'t ,


a voyage of 1,045 miles, reached the sea in lat. 69'
14' N. and long. 135 59' W. He then undertook the
westward route, while Richardson travelled east-
ward. In long. 149' 39' W., Franklin was arrested by
a barrier of rock and ice, which he named Repulse
Reef, and, being short of provisions turned back, ig-
norant of the fact that Captain Beechy had brought
his ship, the Blossom, up to Point Barrow, or only

146 miles distant from him. Franklin, after surveying
the coast for 374 miles, and accomplishing a voyage
of upwards of 2,000 miles, returned to Great Bear
Lake, where he was joined by Dr. Richardson. In
the following year Beechy once more sailed for the
appointed rendezvous; but Franklin, meanwhile,
was on his way back to England.
In 1827 the indefatigable Parry started with an ex-
pedition for the north shoreof Spitzbergen. It was
characterized by his daring attempt to cross the pack-
ice in light boats and sledges; the former being used
in the water-ways and pools, the latter in travelling
over the frozen plains. Nothing but the strongest
enthusiasm could have rendered this enterprise possi-
ble. When the explorers arrived at a gap in the ice,
they launched their boats and embarked. On reach-
ing the opposite side they landed, and by sheer force
hauled up the boats; a laborious process, occupying
so much time and making such demandson the men's
strength that only eight miles were accomplished in
five days. They could not travel except by night on
account of the glare of the snow, which threatened
them with blindness. Breakfasting soon after sun-
set, they labored for some hours; then made their
chief meal, and towards sunrise halted,
lighted their pipes, wrapped themselves
up in their furs and laid down to rest.
The reader must not suppose that the
ice-fields of the Polar regions are as
smooth and level as the frozen surface of
an English river. They are intersected
by "lanes" of water and broken up by
rugged hummocks of ice which can be
crossed only with extreme difficulty. In
spite of every obstacle, Parry pressed on,
ambitious to reach the 83d parallel of
latitude. But at last he became aware of
the start ng circumstance that, fasterthan
he moved forward, the ice was carrying
him backward; in other words, it was
-slowly drifting southward beneath his feet,
and bearing him and his partyalong with
it. To struggle against an adverse Nature
was hopeless. In lat. 82 45' he gave it
up; for though they had travelled nearly 300 miles
over the rugged ice, and through half frozen water,
they had advanced no more than 172 miles from the
Steam was first used as an agent of Arctic explora-
tion in 1829, when Sir Felix Booth placed a steam-
ship, the Victory, under the command of Sir John
Ross and his nephew, Sir James. The Victory made



her way into Prince Regent Inlet; found the wreck
of the lFury on the 12th of August, and on the I5th
reached Parry's furthest point. Thence she accom-
plished 300 miles along a previously unexplored
coast, and on the 7th of October went into winter
quarters in what is now called Felix Harbor. There
Ross was held fast in the ice for eleven months. In
September, 1830, he once more got underway, but
after sailing for about three miles, was again caught
in the pack-ice and shut up until August, 1831. On
this occasion the Victory accomplished four miles,
and on the 27th of September was imprisoned for

L t.J'-/-- .lmttk JX ---.t k .i$t


another winter, having thus achieved exactly seven
miles in two years.
In April, 1832, James Ross made a sledge excur-
sion to the westward and crowned himself with glory
by reaching and fixing the magnetic North Pole in
lat. 700 5' 17" N. and lat. 96o 46 45" W.
The long imprisonment in the ice had by this time
affected the health of the crew; and as there was no
chance of releasing the ship, Ross determined to
abandon her, and effect his escape from the Polar soli-
tudes in boats and sledges.
He made first for the wreck of the Fury in order to
avail himself of her stores and materials; and after a
terrible journey reached it, but so spent and broken

joy to see before them the ample expanse of Barrow
Strait; and with a favorable wind they now steered
to the south, passing Cape York and Admiralty Inlet,
and on the 25th reaching the eastern shore of Navy
Board Inlet.
At four o'clock on the following morning the look-
out man announced that a ship was in sight; but as
the breeze was blowing freshly, she bore away under
all sail, leaving them behind. Fortunately a dead
calm succeeded, and by dint of hard rowing our ex-
plorers approached so near that their signals were
described, when the ship heaved to and lowered a
boat, which made directly towards them. The mate
in command asked them if they were in distress and

N*V. 49

down that further progress was impossible. Here he
wintered, the whole party undergoing the most fear-
ful sufferings and several dying. With the first warm
days of the summer of 1833 their hopes revived.
They resumed their perilous adventure, and on the
15th of August gained the open sea and took to their
boats. At midnight they passed Edwin Bay and next
morning reached the farthest point to which they had
advanced in the preceding year. Finding an open
"water lane they kept to the northward, and in the
evening were tossing off the north-eastern point of
the American continent. On the 17th great was their


offered assistance, adding that he belonged to the
Isabella of Hull, once commanded by Captain Ross
but then by Captain Humphreys. He was with diffi-
culty convinced that his former commander stood
before him-declaring that it was all a mistake, for
he had certainly been dead for two years. When
finally satisfied, he hastened back to his ship with
the glad tidings, and immediately her yards were
manned, and three ringing cheers greeted the captain
and his party.
As soon as possible Captain Humphreys steered
for England, and on the 12th of October reached
Stromness in Orkney. The intelligence of the rescue
so happily accomplished quickly spread thence
throughout the kingdom, and Captain Ross and his
companions were received as men who had risen from
the grave. On his landing at Hull he was welcomed
by enthusiastic crowds, like a general fresh from the
field of victory. He fully deserved the reception thus
accorded him.
In the fewest possible words, we must record the
discovery of Great Fish River in 1833 by Lieutenant
Back, and Dease and Simpson's exploration of Vic-
toria Land and Boothia in 1838.
With somewhat more detail we must refer to
Captain Back's exploration of the coast of Boothia
Felix. He left England in the Terror on June 14th,
1836, and on the Ist of August was struggling with
the ice-floes off Resolution Island. On the 23rd he
sighted Baffin's Island, and began to work his way
through a sea of ice to Southampton Island. Thence
he proceeded towards Repulse Bay, where he intended
to winter; but late in the month of September a vio-
lent storm drove him back past Cape Comfort, where
the Terror was fairly ice-bound, resting on the solid
ice as on a cradle, and driven to and fro as the great
frozen plain, moved with the heaving currents and
rushing winds. In this position Captain Back and
his followers passed the winter, enduring severe hard-
ships and constantly disquieted by violent gales.
Towards the close of February the floe rent
asunder, with a commotion which threatened to crush
the ship into dust. Hither and thither drove the
broken masses, hurtling against one another, grind-
ing and crashing together with the most appalling
sounds-now lifting he ship clean out of the water,
now dashing against her sides with a force which
made her reel from stem to stern. This series of dis-
turbances extended into March. On the I6th they
reached a crisis. A mad onset of floating ice raised
the quivering vessel hard upon the floe. "Scarcely
ten minutes," says Back, were left us for the expres-

sion of our astonishment that anything of human
build could outlive such assaults, when another
equally violent rush succeeded, and in its way toward
the starboard quarter threw up a rolling wave thirty
feet high, crowned by a blue square mass of many tons,
resembling the entire side of a house, which, after
hanging for some time in doubtful poise on the ridge,
at length fell with a crash into the hollow, in which,
as in a cavern, the after part of the ship seemed im-
bedded. It was indeed an awful crisis, rendered
more frightful from the mistiness of the night and
dimness of the moon."
During this long and gloomy period of disaster,
the unfortunate Terror was driven to and fro over a
range of twenty-six to forty-eight miles north-west of
Seahorse Point; but after the i6th she kept away
from shore, and set towards the southeast. Another
month passed by and still the ice held her in its grip.
Then it parted for awhile, and Back seized the oppor-
tunity to refit his shattered vessel. Once more it
closed in, and so continued from the 7th of May until
the 2d of June, when it finally broke up, but without
any violent commotion. Then the ship's hull was
calked and coated with tar; and a channel having
been cut through the open floe into the open sea, the
Terror finally regained her liberty on the i3th of
July, after four months detention.
She was now near Charles Island; that is, about
midway between Cape Comfort and the mouth of
Hudson Strait. What was to be done. A careful
inspection of the ice-battered vessel soon answered
this question. There was nothing for it but to turn
her prow homeward; and, indeed, no little doubt was
felt whether she would ever gain in safety a British
port. She was completely crazy, broken, leaky, rid-
dled; and not even her tossing to and fro and pro-
longed battle with the grinding ice-masses had been
a more perilous experience than her voyage across
the Northern Atlantic proved. How she rolled with
every sea! How she bent before every gust of wind !
When she reached the northwest coast of Ireland
she was actually sinking by the head, so that it was
found necessary to run her ashore in Lough Swilly on
the 3d of September. Had she been three hours
longer at sea, she would assuredly have foundered.
Captain Back's voyage added nothing to our knowl-
edge of the geography of the Polar World; but it
furnishes a brilliant illustration of the resolution,
courage and endurance of British seamen. It occu-
pies a page in Arctic history which is comparatively
little known; yet it is a page of the highest interest.
In the spring of 1845 the Erebus, under Sir John


Franklin, accompanied by the Terror, under Captain
Crozier-both ships being carefully fitted out and
provisioned for three years-sailed from the Thames.
The crews numbered 137 picked men.
On the 8th of June they left the Orkneys, steering
for the extreme point of Greenland, known as Cape
Farewell; where, indeed, the adventurer does, as it
were, bid farewell to the security and liberty of the
civilized world. A month later they lay at anchor in
the middle of a group of rocky inlets on the east side

up, the westward route lies open, and the Arctic ex-
pedition ploughs the waves for Lancaster Sound.
Thereafter a cloud descends upon it; it passes into
the heart of the grim solitudes of the Polar World,
and men hear of it no more. Whether it bent its
course, and how it reached Cape Riley arid Beechy
Islands, or what mishaps befell the two stout ships
composing it, are problems the solution of which even
now is far from complete.
When two years had elapsed without any tidings

..... l.... -_ .. *: .


of Baffin's Bay. Yet another fortnight and we see
them with the mind's eye," as some of the whalers
saw them, gallantly struggling with the ice which im-
peded their progress across the Bay of Baffin to Lan-
caster Sound. Seven officers man a boat and drag
her across the ice to visit the whalers. They go on
board the Prince of HWales, of Hull. All well," they
report; and express the blithest, cheeriest confidence
in the success of their enterprise. After a hearty
handgrasp they say good-bye and return to their
ships. On the same evening (July 26th) the ice breaks

of the expedition reaching England, the public mind
grew seriously alarmed. Expectation deepened into
anxiety ; anxiety darkened into fear When the win-
ter of 1848 passed away, and still no tidings came,
it was felt that further inaction would become in-
tolerable. Hitherto the great object had been the
discovery of the northwest passage ; now the thoughts
of men were all directed to a search after Frank-
lin and his companions. Strangely enough, Providence
had so ordered it that in the search after these
" martyrs of science the former object was attained.


An expedition in search of the missing heroes was
despatched under Sir James Ross, and another under
Sir John Richardson; both added to the stores of
geographical knowledge, but nothing more. These
had worked from the eastward. Captains Moore and
Kellet worked from the westward, entering Behring
Strait and actually reaching, by their boats, the north
of MacKenzie River. In the spring of 1849, the
British Government offered a reward of 20o,ooo to any
private explorers, of any nation, who should discover
and succor the wanderers; and Lady Franklin, out of
her own resources, organized several relieving parties.
So it happened that, in 1850, no fewer than twelve
vessels, led by Ross, Rae, McClure, Osborne, Collin-
son, Penny, Austin, Ommaney, Forsyth and De Haven,
beside boat and sledge companies, plunged deep into
the far northern wildernesses to trace the footprints of
the lost. The Admiralty orders to Franklin had been
to pass through Lancaster Sound into Barrow Strait;
thence to Cape Walker, and from Cape Walker, by
such course as he might find convenient,to Behring
Strait. The general opinion was, that he had got to
the west of Melville Island and then been caught by
the ice among the numerous islands lying in that part
of the Arctic Sea. And it was supposed he would
be engaged in an effort to cross the ice and reach
either one of the Hudson Bay settlements, or some
whaling station.
Dr. Rae therefore started for Banks Island, with
the intention of pushing on to Cape Walker. Captains
Collinson and McClure sailed for Behring Strait, in
order to take up the eastward route. Captain Austin
in the Resolute, Captain Omm'aney in the Assistance,
and Lieutenants Cater and Osborne in the Pioneer
and Intrefid, proceeded to Baffin's Bay, in order to
follow up Franklin's track; while other westward
bound expeditions, such as the Felix under Captain
Sir John Ross, Baptain Forsyth in the Prince Albert,
Captain Penny in the Lady Franklin, started for vari-
ous points of Banks Land and Boothia. An Am-
erican expedition, fitted out by Mr. Henry Grinnell,
a New York merchant, and consisting of the Advance
and Rescue, under Lieutenant De Haven, sailed also
for Banks Land and Melville Island in May, 1850.
It was in this year that the first traces of the miss-
ing voyagers were discovered, through the accidental
detention at Beechy Island of two of the searching
expeditions-namely, those of Austin and Penny.
When these, in August, 185o, had reached the
mouth of Wellington Channel, they were driven by
the large ice-fields sweeping out of it and out of Bar-
row Strait, to seek shelter in a great bay formed at

the eastern entrance of the channel, and almost bi-
sected by Beechy Island. On the 23d, a boat's crew
from Captain Ommaney's ship, the Assistance, landed
on one of the headlands of this bay, and, to their ab-
solute surprise, discovered signs of a former visit from
Europeans. Under the bold, dark cliffs of Cape Riley,
might be seen the ground plan of a tent, scraps of
rope and canvas, quantity of birds' bones and feath-
ers, besides a long-handled rake that had been used
apparently in collecting the beautiful weeds of the
ocean-bed. Nothing was found, however, to identify
these relics with Franklin's expedition. When Captain
Penny heard of the find he determined, in con-
junction with Lieutenant De Haven (of the Grinnell
Expedition), to prosecute a careful search in the
vicinity of Wellington Channel. While the exploring
ships were lying under the west point of Beechy
Island some of the men obtained permission to go
ashore. On landing, they sauntered towards a low
projecting spur, which stretches to the north, choosing
a convenient spot to cross the huge ridges of ice
lying piled up along the beach. They were seen to
mount the ridge or backbone of the point; in a min-
ute afterwards they were observed from the ships to
rush towards a dark object, and gather round it with
every sign of excitement. It was immediately felt
that fresh traces had been discovered, and a rush of
all hands took place to Beechy Island. There, on
the point, stood a carefully constructed cairn of a
pyramidical form. The base consisted of a series of
preserved meat-tins filled with gravel and sand, and
more meat tins were so arranged as to taper upwards
to the summit, where was fixed the remnant of a
broken boarding-pike. But no record could be found;
nothing to connect it with Sir John Franklin.
Presently, as they looked along the northern slope of
the island, other strange objects caught their eye.
Another rush of eager, breathless beings, and all
stand in silence before three graves. Some of them
are unable to refrain from tears as they mutter the
words inscribed upon the rude tablets, "Erebus," and
" Terror."
On the 27th of August, as if drawn by some mag-
netic attraction, no fewer than ten searching-vessels
met at Beechy Island, and several lay there during
the winter with the view of resuming their work in
the spring of 1851, but no additional discoveries were
made. Sledging parties were sent out in all direc-
tions, and along the shores of Wellington Channel,
the coasts of Banks Land, and the waters from Bar-
row Strait to Melville Island, 675 miles of new coast-
line were surveyed. The outcome of all this labor


and adventure was represented by the generally ac-
cepted conclusion that Franklin, after leaving Wel-

= .

- -

* 1


lington Channel, had moved in a southwest direc
Special reference should be made, however, tc
skillfully organized sledge expeditions of Ca]
Austin. These were designed to
explore the coasts and islands
along Parry Strait, the sea belt
westward from Barrow Strait to
Melville Island, and the north end
of Banks Land; Wellington chan-
nel being reserved for Captain
Penny. The westward partynum-
bering fourteen sledges and 104 g
men, started under Captain Om- -
maney on the 14th April, 1857, to
an encampment on Griffin Island,
where they were carefully inspect-
ed by Captain Austin. On the
evening of the 15th they set out,
with kites and sails attached to the
the boats, and their men singing
lustily while hauling at the drag
Three of the parties proceeded
along the southern, and three along
the northern shore. The record of
their achievements runs as follows: No. I, ul
Captain Ommaney, travelled 480 miles, of which
were previously unknown, and was absent 60 c


No. 2, under Lieutenant (afterwards Admiral) Sherard
Osborne, discovered 50 miles, travelled 506 miles, was
absent 58 days. No. 3, under Lieutenant Browne,
travelled 375 miles, discovered 15o miles of coast, and
was absent 44 days. Three went to the southward.
Of those which took a northerly course, No. I travelled
550 miles, discovering 70 miles of coast, and was
absent 62 days. No. 2, commanded by Lieutenant
M'Clintock, travelled 760 miles, discovered 40 miles of
coast, and was absent for 80 days. Lieutenant M'Clin-
tock pushed as far westward as a point in lat. 74
38' N. and longitude I14 20' W. No. 3, under Sur-
geon Bradford, travelled 669 miles, discovering 135
miles of coast, and being absent 80 days. The achieve-
ments of these parties show what may be expected
from the sledge journeys to be undertaken in con-
nection with the present Arctic expedition (1876).
The other sledges were absent only for periods vary-
ing from twelve to thirty-four days, their business
being to form depots of provisions, ascertain positions,
and take observations. But, though their work seems
easier than that of the farther-reaching parties, they
suffered much more severely, for no fewer than
twenty-eight of their men were frost-bitten, and one
of the leaders died from cold and fatigue.
After receiving and considering the reports sent in
by his officers, Captain Austin came to the conclusion

THE THREE TOMBS. (Franklin Expedition.)

nder that the expedition under Franklin had not proceeded
205 either to the southward or westward of Wellington
lays. Strait.


The sledge parties appointed to explore Wellington
Channel were six in number and consisted of forty-
one men, led by Captain Stewart, Messrs. Marshall,
Reid, and J. Stewart, and Surgeons Sutherland and
Goodsir, under the general superintendence of Cap-
tain Penny. They started on the 27th of April, but
soon met with stormy weather, and, after having been
sore buffeted for several days, were forced to return.
They rested a while and then, on the 6th of May, set
forth again. Some made so bold a circuit as almost
to touch the most northerly of Captain Austin's par-
ties; but their principal feat was the discovery of a
wide westward channel of open water extending along
the further side of the lands which bound Barrow and
Parry Straits.
In this discovery Captain Penny was personally
concerned, and he made vigorous efforts to follow it
up. Following the coast line of Wellington Channel,
he reached lat. 750 22' N. at Cape Duhorn, from
which he struck ten miles northwestward to Point
Decision. Thence, on the I5th of May, he crossed
the ice, still in a northwesterly direction, to an
island which he named Baillie Hamilton. On the
17th, after completing the circuit of this island, he
reached the open strait, saw in it twenty-five miles of
clear water, and discovered a headland in the distance
with a dark sky over it, indicating open water on the
further side. This point was found to be in latitude
76' 2t N. and longitude 950 55' W., and the strait was
designated Victoria Channel.
Dr. Kane, the surgeon accompanying Lieutenant
De Haven's expedition, about this time fell in with
what he conceived to be traces of heavily-laden
sledges, and he formed the opinion that Franklin had
gone north from Cape Riley as soon as the ice broke
up in 1846, and from Wellington Channel had pushed
right into the Polar Sea. Accordingly, in this direc-
tion the Advance made her difficult way as far
as possible, Dr. Kane displaying an almost reck-
less courage, which gained him the sobriquet of the
Mad Yankee." No more relics, however, were then
discovered, though afterwards a record found at Point
Victory confirmed the accuracy of Kane's conjecture,

and showed that Franklin had attempted that course,
though driven back by insuperable obstacles.
Several expeditions followed one another in heroic
efforts to wrest from the icy North the solemn secrets
it so jealously preserved. But no further information
was obtained of Franklin and his companions.
Whether they had turned homeward and perished in
Baffin's Bay; whether, as Kane supposed, they had ad-
vanced to the northwest by Wellington Channel; or
whether (as was indeed the case) they were ice-bound
in Melville Island, were problems, the solution of
which seemed destined to remain an impossibility.
The Wellington Channel route was again explored
in April, 1852, by Sir Edward Belcher, who had five
vessels under his command-the Assistance, Resolute,
North Star, Pioneer and Intrepid. In the same year
Lady Franklin despatched the Rattlesnake and Isabel
to Behring Strait to assist Captain Collinson and
McClure, while Dr. Rae undertook another survey of
Boothia; and Captain Inglefield, with the Lady
Franklin and Phenix repaired to Barrow Strait in
support of Sir Edward Belcher. But, as an American
writer remarks, it is singular that not one of these
expeditions, whether equipped by the government or
by private generosity, was despatched to Melville
Sound, the very spot where the lost seaman might. be
expected to be found, if he had carried out the instruc-
tions he received from the Admiralty. It was not,"
says Mr. Blake, until five years after the question
of Franklin's safety was mooted, that Dr. Rae pene-
trated to Cape Walker, and beyond that there seemed
a fatality brooding over all the explorers which
tabooed the only true and proper course to the south
and west of Melville Sound. Every place to which
he was not sent was thoroughly ransacked; whether
he was sent, not a single ship or man was sent.
A melancholy incident must be record' in connec-
tion with Captain Inglefield's expedition. It was
accompanied by a gallant and enthusia tic young
Frenchman, Lieutenant Bellot, as a volunteer ex-
plorer; but, during a terrible gale of wind, he was
blown from a piece of floating ice, and drowned
(August i8th, 1853).




S I* -

'. :

'.: ,,. ", ,


A SECOND American expedition in search of Sir
John Franklin was fitted out in 1852, and placed under
the command of Dr. Elisha Kane, who had already
served in 1850 under Lieutenant De Haven, and was
well-fitted for the arduous and honorable post offered
him, by his ability, resolution, power of endurance,
and enthusiasm. Having accepted the conduct of
the enterprise, he proceeded to enlist volunteers and
to mature his plans. Believing that the peninsula of
Greenland extended far to the northward, approaching
the Pole in all probability nearer than any other
known land, and that in this way he would obtain
easier access both to the east and west, than from
Wellington Channel, he resolved on an overland

route in as direct a line north as it was possible to
follow. In other words, he proposed to start from
the most northerly attainable point of Baffin's Bay, and
thence, pressing on toward the Pole, as far as boats or
sledges could carry him, to examine the coast lines
for vestiges of the lost party.
His little company consisted of eighteen officers
and men, including Dr. Hayes, surgeon; August
Sonntag, astronomer; and Henry Brooks, first
On May 30, 1852, they left New York in Mr. Grin-
nell's brig, the Advance; in eighteen days reached St.
John's, Newfoundland, where they took on board a
noble team of Newfoundland dogs, the gift of Gov-
ernor Hamilton; and thence proceeded to Baffin's
On the Ist of July they entered the harbor of Fisk-
ernaes, in Danish Greenland, a little colony of fisher-
men, who deal in cod, and crapefish, seal and shark-
oils, and live a life of hardship and enterprise, in
which the profits seem utterly incommensurate with
the risks. Here Dr. Kane engaged an Esquimau hun-
ter, one Hans Christian, notably expert both with
kajack and javelin; fat, good-natured, and, except
when stimulated by the excitement of the hunt, as
stolid and impassive as a North American Indian.
Thence they kept along the coast of Sukkertoppen, a
great depot for reindeer-skins; and on the Ioth of
July put to sea, steering to the north and west in the
teeth of a heavy gale.
Seventeen days later the expedition reached Mel-
ville Bay, a basin which is celebrated both for the
number of its icebergs and its whales, and has wit-
nessed the loss of many a goodly vessel. Keeping to
the westward, Dr. Kane resolved to double Melville
Bay by keeping outside of the belt of broken land ice;
but the voyage proved both difficult and dangerous.
The floes gathered rdund his brig, he anchored her to
an iceberg to prevent her from being completely
imprisoned. But they had scarcely enjoyed a "breath-
ing spell'" before they were startled by a succession of
loud, crackling sounds; followed by a shower of ice-
fragments, not larger than a walnut. They accepted
the warning; hauled in their anchors; and put out
into the open just as the face of the berg fell down in
ruins, with a report like that of near artillery.


On the ist of August they made fast to another
large berg, a moving breakwater of gigantic propor-
tions ;" this carried them steadily to the north; and
when all danger from drifting ice was over, they got
under way, and through a tolerably clear channel took
their course to the northeast, while the heavens were
lighted with the glory of the midnight sun, and the
surrounding ice-fields glittered like one great resplen-
dency of gem work-blazing carbuncles, and rubies,
and molten gold.
Keeping a mid-course through the bay, Dr. Kane

the coast singularly uninviting. To the west the snow
descended with heavy uniformity to the water's edge,
and was only here and there relieved by glimpses of
the green-clad soil. On the right rose an array of
cliffs, the frowning grandeur of which would have
fitly dignified the threshold of the proudest of
southern seas." Their average height varied from
1,200 to 1,500 feet, with some of their precipices ris-
ing sheer and unbroken for 800 feet.
On Littleton Island Dr. Kane determined to estab-
lish his first depot of stores for use on the return voy-

---~-~ ---$-%


succeeded in reaching the North (or Cape York)
Water on the 3d of August, and saw before him
Smith Sound, which is now universally recognized as
the great highway to the Arctic Pole. On the 5th he
passed the "Crimson Cliffs of Sir John Ross; so
called from the mass of rose-red snow which lodges
in their ravines and gorges. Hakluyt Island, with its
tall spire of gneiss about 600 feet high, was the next
station; and on the 6th he sighted Cape Alexander
and Cape Isabella, the two promontories which guard
the entrance to Smith Sound. He found the aspect of

age. The life-boat was loaded with provisions,
blankets, and other articles, and then buried. Along
her gunwale were placed the heaviest rocks the men
could handle; and after the interstices had been filled
up with smaller stones and sods of andromeda and
moss, sand and water were poured among the layers.
All this frozen at once into a solid mass, would be
hard enough, it was hoped to resist the claws of the
Polar bear.
To the surprise of our explorers, they discovered
that they were not the first human beings who had


sought a shelter in this
desolate spot. It was
evident from a few
ruined walls here and
there, that it had once ,.
been the seat of a rude '
settlement, and in the
little knoll cleared t .
away to cover in the
deposit of stores were
found some human re- a
mains. .
Nothing, says Dr. ,
Kane, can be imagined
more sad and home-
less than these me-
morials of extinct life.
Hardly a vestige of
growth was traceable
on the bare and ice- ,"
scarred rocks, and the
huts so closely resem-
bled the broken frag- ..
ments around that it
was almost difficult to FASTENED T
distinguish one from
the other. Walrus-bones lay about in all directions,
showing that walrus-meat had been the principal food

of the inhabitants,
There were remains,
too, of fox and nor-
whal, but no signs of
seal or reindeer.
The Esquimaux, un-
able to restore their
dead to the embrace
of their mother earth,
seat them as in the
attitude of repose, with
the knees drawn close
to the body, and then
enclose them in a sack
'.. of skins. The imple-
ments used in life are
grouped around, they
are covered with a
rude dome of stones,
and a cairn is piled
above. Thus a ceno-
taph is formed which
remains intact for gen-
eration after genera-
AN ICEBERG. tion. The Esquimaux
never profane the rest-
ing place of the dead. Continuing his adventur-
ous career, Dr. Kane pressed through the drifting




ice to some distance beyond Cape Lifeboat Cove
and took shelter in a beautiful little bay, land-
locked from east to west, and accessible only
from the north, which figures conspicuously in his
narrative under the name of Refuge Harbor. It was
some time before the ice broke up sufficiently to per-
mit of his effecting his escape; and, even after he
had once more got out into the channel, he had a
daily fight with bergs and floes. At one time, while
anchored off a rocky island, which he called God-
send Ledge," a perfect hurricane came on, and,
though he had three hawsers out they snapped one
after the other like mere threads, and the Advance
drifted to and fro at the mercy of the "wild ice."

-.- .- ,*.
: .- . .. .


His only hope of safety lay in mooring close to a berg,
and, this effected, the brig was towed along as by a
gigantic courser, the spray dashing over his wind-
ward planks, and his forehead ploughing up the lesser
ice as if in scorn." Drifting masses, broken up and
hurtled together by a tremendous storm, threatened
them with destruction, and the explorers were thank-
ful when, on the 22d, the gale abated, and they carried
their little vessel into comparatively smooth water,
sheltered by the ice-belt which lined the rocky and
mountainous coast.
Having secured a haven of safety for the Advance,
Dr. Kane resolved to make a personal inspection of
the coast, in order to select a convenient winter station,
from which he might start on his sledge journeys in

the following spring. For this purpose he. had caused
his best and lightest whale-boat to be fitted with a
canvas cover, that rendered it not less comfortable
than a tent. A supply of pemmican was packed in
small cases, and a sledge taken to pieces stowed
away under the thwarts. The boat's crew consisted
of Brooks, Bonsall, Sonntag, Riley, Blake, and Morton.
Each man had buffalo-robes for his sleeping gear,
carried a girdle full of woollen socks. to keep them
dry by the warmth of the body, and slung a tin cup
and a sheath-knife to his belt. A soup-pot and lamp
for the mess, and a single extra day suit as common
property, completed the outfit.
Leaving Ohlsen in command of the Advance, Dr.
Kane and his little company pushed off in
the Forlorn Hope, as she was christened;
and, after a cruise of about twenty-four
hours, reached the ice belt, where they
S hauled her up, and stowed her away snugly
under the shelter of a large hummock, after
which they pushed forward in the sledge.
Their journey across the rugged surface
of the ice was by no means without let or
Shindrance. It is easy to glide over the frozen
level which encrusts one of our British lakes
S or streams in a severe winter, but the icy
wastes of the Arctic region are broken up by
gullies, water-ways, and hummocks, render-
ing the traveller's passage one of consider-
able difficulty. In five clays Dr. Kane ad-
vanced only forty miles, and, finding the
obstacles almost insurmountable, he aban-
S doned the sledge, and the whole party pro-
ceeded on foot. With the exception of their
instruments, they carried no burden but their
pemmican and one buffalo robe. The
weather, as yet not far below freezing point,
did not make a tent essential to the bivouac, and,
being so lightly equipped, they were able to make
twenty to twenty-four miles a day.
On the 5th, they came upon a noble bay, perfectly
open, and in strange contrast, therefore, to the ice
outside. The cause of this, at the time, inexplicable
phenomenon was afterwards found to be a roaring,
tempestuous river, which, issuing from a fiord at the
inner extremity of the bay, thundered irresistibly over
a rugged bed of rocks. This river, which appears to
be the largest as yet known in North Greenland, was
about three-quarters of a mile wide at its mouth, and
sensible to the tidal influence for about three miles.
Its course was afterwards traced to an interior glacier,
from the base of which it welled in many streams that


flowed into a single channel about forty miles above was one vast sheet of ice. Close along its shore,
its mouth, almost looking down upon it from the crest of their
Here in the heart of the dreary snowscape, the lofty station, the explorers could see the long lines of
travellers met with an Arctic flower-growth of con- hummocks dividing the floes like the trenches of a
siderable variety of form and color. The infiltration beleaguered city. Farther out, a stream of icebergs,

of the melted snows fed its roots,
and the reverberation of the
sun's heat from the rocks foster-
ed its delicate life. Amid festuca
and other tufted grasses, bright-
ened the purple lychnis and
sparkled the white stem of the -
chickweed, together with a .
graceful hesperis, reminding the.
wanderers of the fragrant wall- .. --
flower of our old English gar-
After fording the river, Dr.
Kane called a halt in lat. 780 52'
and long. 78' 41' W. The next
morning, leaving four of his
party to recruit themselves, he
struck across the northeastern
headland, which he named after
the great English novelist, Cape
William Makepeace Thackeray.
It was the last station on the
coast of Greenland determined
by theodolite observations.
About eight miles beyond pro-
jected a lofty headland, which
Kane named Cape Francis
The prospect which Dr. Kane
beheld from the high ground in .
this vicinity was most impres- .
sive. It extended beyond the '
8oth parallel of north latitude. '
Far off on the left lay the west-
ern shore of the Sound, receding
towards the dim, misty north.
To the right a rolling country
led on to a low, dusky, wall-like
ridge, which he afterwards rec-
ognized as the great Glazier of
Humbolt; and still beyond this,
reaching northward from the
north-northeast, lay the land
which now bears the honored name of Washington-
its most projecting headland, Cape Andrew Jackson,
bearing about fourteen degrees from the farthest hill
on the opposite side, Cape John Barrow. All between


increasing in numbers towards the north, presented
an almost impenetrable barrier; but beyond these the
ice seemed less obstructed and obstructive, and patches
of open water glimmered on the distant horizon.

1~P-i~----~ -- --~--~-.s, ~-~n------~-~--

ii :
:2; --~..
ii :


i- -


-Y~ --


Dr. Kane now led his party back to the brig,
resolved to winter in the secure bay he had found for
her, and to occupy the dreary months in expeditions to
different points, so as to obtain a complete knowledge
of the neighboring coast. When the ice broke up in
the ensuing summer, he trusted to resume his onward
Winter was approaching rapidly. By the Ioth of
September the thermometer had fallen to 14, and the
ice-floes had been welded by newly formed ice into a
compact mass with an unbroken surface. About
sixty paces north of the ship an iceberg had been


caught in the toils, was frozen in, and remained the
gigantic neighbor of the adventurers as long as they
remained in Rensselaer Harbor. "The rocky islets
around were fringed with hummocks; and as the tide
fell, their sides were coated with opaque crystals of
bright white. The birds had gone; the sea-swallows
-which abounded when we first reached here-and
even the young burgomasters (gulls) that lingered
after them, had all taken their departure for the south.
Except the snow-birds, these are the last to migrate
of all the Arctic birds."
The chief portion of the ship's cargo was now
unloaded, and deposited in the store-house on Butler
Island. Vigorous efforts were made to increase the

supplies of provisions. Steaks of salt-junk, artistic-
ally cut, were strung on lines, like a countrywoman's
dried apples," and soaked in festoons under the ice.
The salmon-trout and codfish, purchased at Fisker-
naes, were placed in barrels, perforated to permit a
constant circulation of water through them. The
" pickled cabbage was similarly treated, after a little
potash had been used to neutralize the acid. All
these articles were submitted to twelve hours of alter-
nate soaking and freezing, the ice-crust being removed
from them previous to each immersion.
A dog-house was also erected on Butler Island;
but in reference to it Dr. Kane records a remarkable
illustration of the canine character. The Esquimaux
dogs could not be persuaded to sleep away from the
vessel. They preferred the bare snow, where they
could lie within the sound of human voices, to a warm
kennel upon the rocks. Strange, he says, that this
dog-distinguishing trait of affection for man should
show itself in an animal so imperfectly reclaimed from
a savage state that he can hardly be caught when
Dr. Kane's dogs were both Esquimaux and New-
foundlanders. Of the last he had ten, which he was
carefully training in a light sledge to drive (unlike the
Esquimaux) two abreast, with a regular harness, a
breast-collar of flat leather, and a pair of traces. Six
of them made a powerful travelling team; and four
could carry Dr. Kane and his instruments, for short
journeys around the brig with considerable facility.
The sledge was built of American hickory,
thoroughly seasoned, and skillfully combined the three
paramount considerations of lightness, strength, and
diminished friction. It was named the "Little Willie."
Another and stronger sledge, made after a model fur-
nished by the British Admiralty, was called the
"Faith." It measured thirteen feet in length and
four in breadth and could carry fourteen hundred-
weight of mixed stores.
An observatory was also erected. The islet on
which it stood measured some fifty paces long by
forty broad, and rose about thirty feet above the
water-line. Here the adventurers raised four walls of
granite blocks, cementing them together with moss
and water, and the never-failing assistance of frost
which converted the most heterogeneous materials
into a compact mass. On the whole was laid a sub-
stantial timber roof. The pedestals for the support of
the various instruments in use consisted of a conglom-
erate of ice and gravel, well rammed down, while
liquid in iron-hooped pemmican casks and quickly
hardened into solidity. Adjoining was a magnetic


observatory, with wooden floor as well as wooden
roof; and upon the open ice-field, about 140 yards
from the ship, a meteorological observatory with
thermometers, lanterns, and other appliances.
The perils to which Dr. Kane and his party were

.-_. ._ '- -;_ -.. 2^-r -. ..
...' -


exposed may be estimated from the following incident
which we shall allow him to describe in his own
"We have narrowly escaped," he says, being
burned out of house and home. I have given orders
that the fires, lit under my own eye, should be regu-
larly inspected; but through a misadventure the
watch had for a time pretermitted opening the
hatches. As I lowered a lantern,
which was extinguished immediately,
a suspicious odor reached me, as of
burning wood. I descended at once.
Reaching the deck of the forecastle,
my first glance towards the fires
showed me that all was safe there;
and, though the quantity of smoke still
surprised me, I was disposed to at-
tribute it to the recent kindling. But
at this moment, while passing the
door of the bulkhead, which leads THE "F
to the carpenter's room, the gas
began to affect me. My lantern went out as if
quenched by water; and as I ran by the bulkhead
door, I saw the deck near it a mass of glowing
fire for some three feet in diameter. I could not tell

how much farther it extended, for I became quite in-
sensible at the foot of the ladder, and would have
sunk had not Mr. Brooks seen my condition and
hauled me out.
"When I came to myself, which happily was very
soon, I confided my fearful secret to the
four men around me-Brooks, Ohlsen, Blake,
and Stephenson. It was all-important to
avoid confusion. We shut the doors of the
galley, so as to confine the rest of the crew
and officers aft, and then passed up water
from the fire-hole alongside. It was done
very noiselessly. Ohlsen and myself went
down to the burning deck; Brooks handed
S us in the buckets, and in less than ten
minutes we were in safety. It was interest-
ing to observe the effect of steam upon
the noxious gas. Both Ohlsen and myself
w-- were greatly oppressed until the first
bucket was poured on; but as I did this,
directly over the burning coal, raising clouds
of steam, we at once experienced relief, the
fine aqueous particles seemed to absorb the
carbonic acid instantly.
We found the fire had originated in the
remains of a barrel of charcoal, which had
been left in the carpenter's room, ten feet
from the stores, and with a bulkhead separat-
ing it from them. How it had been. ignited, it
was impossible to know. Our safety was due to
the dense charge of carbonic acid gas which sur-
rounded the fire, and the exclusion of atmospheric
air. When the hatches were opened, the flames burst
out with energy."
Gradually the severities of an Arctic winter made


themselves more and more keenly felt; and those ex-
posed to the weather, notwithstanding every precau-
tion, with difficulty escaped very painful touches of
frost-bite. Of a party who had travelled some sixty


miles to establish a cache, or depot of provisions
north of Cape Bancroft, not a man but was more or
less affected. This is not to be wondered at, when we
reflect that the temperature had sunk to 25 degrees
BELOW zero. The darkness advanced with insidious
steadiness; and early in November we read that stars
of the sixth magnitude were visible at noonday. The
black masses of the hills, with their glaring patches of
snow were plain for about five hours of the day; all
the rest was gloom. Except upon the island of Spitz-
bergen, which has the advantage of an insular climate,
tempered by ocean currents, no Christian men had
wintered in so high a latitude; and they who there con-


front the terrors of the north are Russian seamen, in-
ured from earliest years to cold and hardship.
On the 7th of November, we found Dr. Kane calcu-
lating that our darkness has ninety days to run be-
fore we shall get back even to the contested twilight
of to-day. Altogether our winter will have been sun-
less for one hundred and forty days."
With various devices these prisoners in the Arctic
solitudes endeavored to beguile their monotony. They
got up a fancy ball; and published an Arctic news-
paper, The Ice Blink, with the appropriate motto, "In
tenebris severe fidem." It is true, the circulation was
somewhat limited; but the articles were not unworthy of
a wider public. A fox-chase, something like the boyish
sport of Hare and Hounds," was occasionally got
up, and other measures were adopted to combat a de-

pression which is the natural but dangerous result of
extreme cold. Frequent excursions were also made,
though they did but reveal the completeness of the
desolation which surrounded Dr. Kane's winter camp.
Some idea of the rigor of the climate in the month
of February (1854) may be gathered from the follow-
ing data. The thermometer ranged from 60o to 760
below zero-that is 920 to 107 below freezing point.
At such temperature chloric ether became solid and
chloroform exhibited a kind of granular skin or pelli-
cule upon its surface. Spirits of naphtha froze at 54,
and oil of sassafras at 490. The exposed portions of
the human body were surrounded with a wreath of
vapor by the quick condensa-
tion of its exhalations. The
air when inspired, was per-
i i .. ceptibly pungent, and imparted
a sensation of dryness to the
air-passages. It was notice-
able that every man involun-
tarily breathed in, as it were, a
guarded manner, with com-
pressed lips.
The first traces of returning
light were observed at noon on
the 21st of January, when a
tint of orange lighted up, very
briefly, the southern horizon.
Necessarily the influence of the
long and intense darkness was
very depressing, and was felt
even by the lower animals,
many of the dogs dying from
"a mental disease," clearly due
to the absence of light. The
symptoms of this disease were
very peculiar, and deserve to be indicated. The
more material functions of the poor creatures
went on, it would appear, without interruption,
they ate voraciously, retained their strength
and slept soundly. But, otherwise, they acted as
if suffering from lunacy. They barked frenziedly
at nothing, and walked in straight and curved lines
with anxious and unwearied perseverance. They
fawned on their masters, but without seeming con-
scious of the caresses being lavished upon them in re-
turn. Their most intelligent actions seem automatic;
sometimes they clawed you as if seeking to burrow
into your sealskins, sometimes they remained for hours
in moody silence, and then started off howling as if pur-
sued, and ran up and down for hours.
On the 21st of February, Dr. Kane started forth on


an expedition to welcome back the sun. He forgot
his past experiences and present sufferings when once
more he beheld the glorious orb of day, and nestled in

.. .. -.--_. -. .


its glow with a sensation of delight like that of bathing
in perfumed water. Wonderful influence of the sun.
It seemed to inspire our explorers with new life, fresh
strength, fresh hope, body and mind were quickened
and recruited by the invigorating rays; and by de-
grees the adventurers began to think of
resuming the work of exploration.
A day in March was spent after the
following routine-and the description '
is generally applicable to the various
aspects of the winter life on board the
ice-bound ships.
At half-past seven all hands rose,
washed on deck, opened the doors for
ventilation, and then went below for
breakfast. As fuel was scarce, the cook-
ing was done in the cabin. Breakfast
- for all fared alike was hard-tack,
pork, stewed apples, frozen like mo- -
lasses candy, tea and coffee, with a deli-
cate portion of raw potatoes.
Afterwards, those who smoked in-
dulged in their pipes until nine; then
all hands turned to-idlers to idle, work-
ers to work; one to his carpenter's bench,
another to his preparations in canvas; one to play
tailor, another to make shoes; one to. skin birds, one
to tinker and the rest to the Office."
Let us take a peep at the "Arctic Bureau." One

table, one salt pork lamp, with rusty chlorinated flame;
three stools, and as many waxen-faced men with their
legs drawn up under them, the deck at zero being too
cold for the feet. Each has his depart-
ment. Kane is writing, sketching and
projecting maps; Hayes copying logs
and meteorologicals; Sonntag reducing
his work at the observatory. The
-- fourth as one of the working members of
the hire, has long been defunct-you
will find him in bed, or studying Little's
Living Age."
At twelve took place a business round
of inspection and orders were issued
sufficient to fill up the day with work.
Next came the drill of the Esquimaux
dogs-a dog trot especially refreshing
to their driver whose legs creaked with
every kick and whose rheumatic shoul-
ders chronicled every descent of the whip.
And in this way the captives went
on until dinner time ; when their fare was
much the same as at breakfast, with the
exception of pickled cabbage and dried peaches be-
ing substituted for tea and coffee.
At dinner as at breakfast, raw potatoes were intro-
duced as a hygienic luxury. Yet like most medicine,
it was not as appetizing as it was wholesome. Even


when grated nicely, with the ugly red spots omitted
and oil freely added as a lubricant, the partakers were
fain to shut their eyes and bolt "it, like Mrs. Squeer's
molasses and brimstone at Dotheboys Hall.



Sleep, exercise, amusement, and work at will, car-
ried on the day till six o'clock supper; a meal some-
thing like breakfast and something like dinner, only
more sparing; and then the officers submitted to Dr.
Kane the day's reports.
These dismissed, a game at chess or cards was in-
dulged in, or light reading for those who preferred it.
Then the watch was set and silence reigned around."
A peculiar feature of the Arctic Region is the so-
called ice foot (Danish eis-fod), a zone of ice which
stretches along the shore from the Arctic Circle, far
away into the uttermost north. To the south it
breaks up under the genial influence of summer, and
even as high as Upernavik, or Cape Alexander, it dis-
appears; but in higher latitudes it is a perennial
growth, clinging to the bold faces of the cliffs, and
following the curves of the bays and the indentations
of the rivers.
Though it changes with the seasons, it never wholly
passes away-that is to the north of Cape Alex-
ander it forms a broad and secure platform, a level
highway of travel, elevated above the grinding ice of
the sea, and adapting itself like a shroud to all the
sinuosities of the land. It will be convenient to speak
of it as the ice-belt."
Though subject to occasional disruptions by thaws
and evaporation it measures the severity of the year
by its rate of increase. Rising with the first inclem-
encies of the fading summer, it enriches with curious
and fantastic frost-work the undulating sea-line; a
little later, and it is moulded into bolder shapes by
collision with the drifting floes and rocks falling from
the cliffs which bound it. Before the advent of the
rigid winter, it is already solidified into an impenetra-
ble rampart; and so it continues to gain in size and
strength with the successive freezing of the tides until
summer returns, and its progress is arrested by the
melted snows and rushing water torrents.
During Dr. Kane's first winter at Rensselaer Har-
bor, the ice belt grew to three times the size it had
presented on his arrival; and by the middle of March
the islands and adjacent shores were blocked up by a
continuous icy terrace, nearly 27 feet high and 120
feet wide.
In midwinter, however, the ice-foot is not an un-
broken level. Like the floes, it has its barricades ;
serried and irregular, which can be traversed only
with toil and difficulty.
On the 3oth of March another party was sent out
to establish a depot of provisions, and Kane and the
rest of his followers waited only for their return to be-
gin the transit of the bay. Late at night on the 3ist,

they were working cheerfully by the glare of their
lamps, when a sudden noise of steps was heard above
and immediately afterwards, Sonntag, Ohlsen, and Pe-
terson came down into the cabin. If there was some-
thing startling in their unexpected arrival, much more
startling was their appearance. They were swollen,
haggard and scarcely able to speak.
Where were their companions ? Behind in the ice
-Brooks, Baker, Wilson and Pierce-all frozen and
disabled; and they themselves had risked their lives
to carry the pitiful news, Where were their com-
rades lying ? With cold white lips they muttered that
they could not tell; somewhere in among the hum-
mocks Io the north and east; the snow was drifting
round them when they parted. "Irish Tom" had
gallantly remained to feed and care for them; but of
their recovery there was little hope. It was useless
to put additional questions; they were too exhausted
to be able to rally their ideas.
Not a moment was to be lost. While some attended
to the feeble wayfarers, and made ready a hasty meal,
others rigged out the Little Willie," with its tent-
like cover and placed in it a supply of pemmican.
Then Ohlsen, as the least exhausted was strapped
on the sledge, encased in a fur bag, with his legs
wrapped in dog skins and eider down and away
went the rescue party. It consisted of nine men and
Dr. Kane. The thermometer, when they set out,
stood at 41, or 780 below freezing point.
A tower of ice, called by the men Pinnacly Berg,"
served as their first landmark; other colossal ice-
bergs, extending in long, beaded lines across the bay,
helped to guide them for some distance; and it was
not until they had travelled for sixteen hours that they
began to lose their way.
That their lost comrades were somewhere in the
gloomy area before them, and within a radius of forty
miles they knew; but this was to know little. And
Mr Ohlsen, who now awoke from a prolonged slum-
ber, with unequivocal signs of mental disturbance,
seemed to have lost the bearing of the bergs, which,
indeed, in form and color, continually repeated them-
selves. Passing ahead of the party," says Kane;
(and there is a simple pathos in his simple, unadorned
narrative), "and clambering over some rugged ice-piles
I came to a long, level floe, which I thought might
probably have attracted the eyes of weary men in cir-
cumstances like our own. It was a light conjecture, but
it was enough to turn the scale for there was no other
to balance it. I gave orders to abandon the sledge, and
disperse in search of footmarks. We raised our tent,
placed our pemmican in cache, except a small allow-


ance for each man to carry on his person; and poor
Ohlsen now just able to keep his legs, was liberated
from his bag. The thermometer had fallen by this time
to 49.3Q, and the wind was setting in sharply from
the northwest. It was out of the question to halt;
it required brisk exercise to keep us from freezing. I
could not even melt ice for water; and at
these temperatures any resort to snow for
the purpose of allaying thirst was followed
by bloody lips and tongue; it burned like
It was indispensable, then, that we should
move on, looking out for traces as we went. -
Yet when the men were ordered to spread
themselves, so as to multiply the chances,
though they all obeyed heartily some pain-
ful impress of solitary danger, or perhaps
it may have been the varying configuration
of the ice-field, kept them closing up con-
tinually into a single group. The strange
manner in which some of us were affected
I now attribute as much to shattered nerves
as to the direct influence of the cold. Men
like M'Gary and Bonsall, who had stood out
our severest marches, were seized with
trembling fits and short breath; and, in
spite of all my efforts to keep up an ex-
ample of sound hearing, I fainted twice on
the snow.
"We had been nearly eighteen hours out
without water or food, when a new hope cheered us. I
think it was Hans, our Esquimau hunter, who thought
he saw a broad sledge track. The drift had nearly effaced
it, and we were some of us doubtful at first whether
it was not one of those accidental rifts which the gales
make in the surface snow. But as we traced it on to
the deep snow among the hummocks, we were led to
footsteps; and, following these with religious care,
we at last came in sight of a small American flag flut-
tering from a hummock, and lower down a little ma-
sonic banner hanging from a tent pole hardly above
the drift. It was the camp of our disabled comrades.
We reached it after an unbroken march of twenty-one
They found the little tent almost buried in the snow.
When Dr. Kane came up, his companions, who had
outstripped him, were standing in silent file on each
side of it. With a delicacy of feeling which is almost
characteristic of sailors, and seems instinctive to them,
they expressed desire that he should enter alone,
As he crawled beneath the tent-curtains, and, coming
upon the darkness, heard before him the burst of wel-

come gladness that came from the poor prostrate
creatures within, and then for the first time, the cheer
without, his weakness and gratitude almost overcame
him. They had expected him," was their exclama-
tion; "they were sure he would come!"
There were now fifteen souls in all; the thermome-


ter was 750 below freezing; the sole accommodation
a tent barely able to contain eight persons; conse-
quently, more than half of the party were compelled
to keep from freezing by walking outside while the
others slept. The halt, however, was not prolonged.
Each refreshed himself by a two hours sleep, and
then the homeward march began.
They carried with them nothing but the tent, furs
to protect the rescued party, and food sufficient for
a journey of fifty hours. Everything else was aban-
doned. Two large Buffalo bags, each made of four
skins, were doubled up, so as to form a kind of sack
lined on each side by fur, closed at the bottom but
opened at the top. This impromptu sack was laid
on the sledge of which the tent, smoothly folded,
served as the floor. The sick, with their limbs
sewed up carefully in reindeer skins, were placed upon
the bed of buffalo robes, in a half recumbent position;
due warmth was maintained by a plentiful supply of
skins and blanket-bags; and the whole was so lashed
together as to leave only a single opening opposite the
mouth for breathing.


These preparations completed, a short prayer was
uttered and the brave little company started on their
return. The difficulties they met with, however, were
such as severely tested their courage and endurance.
A great part of their track lay among a succession of
hummocks, some of them extending in long lines,
fifteen or twenty feet in height, and all so steep, that
to ascend them was impossible. The sledge had to
pursue a winding course in and out of these serious
obstacles, frequently driving through gaps filled with
recently fallen snow, which hid the fissures and open-
ings in the ice beneath. These, says Kane, were fear-
ful traps to disengage a limb from, for every man was
painfully aware that a fracture or even a sprain might
cost him his life. In addition the sledge was top-
heavy with its load, which weighed not less than 1,1oo
pounds; while the maimed men could not bear to be
lashed down tight enough to secure them against
falling off.
Yet, for six hours, the progress of this undaunted
band was cheering. They advanced nearly a mile
an hour, and reached the new floes before they were
absolutely weary. "Our sledge," says Kane, "sus-
tained the trial admirably. Ohlsen, restored by hope,
walked steadily at the leading belt of the sledge-
lines; and I began to feel certain of reaching our
half-way station of the day before, where we had
left our tent. But we were still nine miles from it,
when almost without premonition, we all became
aware of an alarming failure of our energies.
Bonsall and Morton, two of the most robust of
Kane's party besought permission to sleep. They de-
clared that they did not feel cold, and that all they
wanted was a little repose. Presently Hans was found
frozen almost into rigidity under a drift; and Thomas,
standing erect, had his eyes closed, and could scarcely
articulate. Soon afterwards, John Blake threw him-
self on the snow and refused to rise. They made no
complaint of feeling cold; but it was in vain. Dr.
Kane "wrestled, boxed, ran, argued, jeered, or repri-
manded; he found that an immediate halt was una-
voidable. Again we quote from his own narrative on
the simplicity of which it is not possible to improve:
"We pitched our tent with much difficulty. Our
hands were too powerless to strike a fire; we were
obliged to do without water or food. Even the whisky
had frozen at the men's feet, under all the coverings.
We put Bonsall, Ohlsen, Thomas, and Hans, with the
other sick men, well inside the tent, and crowded in
as many others as we could. Then, leaving the party
in charge of Mr. M'Gary, with orders to come on after
four hours' rest, I pushed ahead with William God-

frey, who volunteered to be my companion. My aim
was to reach the half-way tent, and thaw some ice and
pemmican before the others came up.
The floe was of level ice ; the walking excellent. I
cannot tell how long it took us to make the nine miles,
for we were in a strange sort of stupor, and had little
apprehension of time. It was probably about four
hours. We kept ourselves awake by imposing on each
other a continued articulation of words, though such
utterances must necessarily have been incoherent.
Godfrey and I afterwards retained only a very confused
recollection of what preceded our arrival at the tent.
We both, however, remember a bear walking leisurely
before us and tearing up as he went, a jumper that
Mr. M'Gary had improvidently thrown off the day be-
fore. He tore it into shreds, and rolled it into a ball,
but made no attempt to interfere with our progress.
Godfrey, who had a better eye than myself, looking
some miles ahead, could see that our tent was under-
going the same unceremonious treatment. I thought I
saw it too, but we were so drunken with cold that
we strode on steadily; and, for aught I know, without
quickening our pace."
Probably their approach proved the safety of the
contents of the tent; for on their arrival they found it
uninjured, though the bear had overturned it, and
tossed pemmican and buffalo robes into the snow,
only a couple of blanket-bags were missing. With
great difficulty they raised it, crawled into their rein-
deer sleeping bags without a word and for three hours
enjoyed a dreamy but intense slumber. When Dr.
Kane awoke his long beard was a mass of ice, fro-
zen fast to the buffalo skin, and Godfrey had liter-
ally to cut him out with his jack-knife.
Water was melted and some soup cooked before
the party arrived; they accomplished the nine miles
in five hours, were doing well, and, considering the
circumstances, in excellent spirits. The day was calm
and the sun clear, so that the journey was less
onerous than it might have been. The new comers
enjoyed the refreshment that had been got ready
for them; the crippled were repacked in their
robes, and the whole party sped briskly toward the
ranges of ice-hummocks that lay between them and
the Pinnacly Berg.
These hummocks came properly under the desig-
nation of squeezed ice. A great chain of bergs
stretching from northwest to southwest, moving
with the tides, had compressed the surface-floes, and
reared them upon their edges in a singularly fantastic
Desperate efforts were required on the part of our


worn and weary travellers to carry them across the
rugged area; desperate indeed, for their partially
resuscitated strength failed them anew. and their self-
control began to desert them. They could no longer
refrain from eating snow; and as a consequence, their
mouths swelled and some of them became speech-
less. They must have perished had not the day been
warmed by a clear sunshine, so that the thermometer
rose in the shade to within four degrees of zero.
As they grew weaker and weaker their halts ne-
cessarily became more frequent; and they would fall
into a semi-somnolent condition, on the snow. Strange
to say, these brief intervals of slumber proved refresh-
ing, so that Dr. Kane was induced to try the experi-
ment in his own person, taking care that Riley should
arouse him at the end of three minutes. Afterwards
he timed the men in the same way. They sat upon
the runners of the sledge, and fell asleep immediately,
but were startled into wakefulness the moment their
three minutes had elapsed.
At eight o'clock in the evening the wayfarers were
clear of the floes, and gained some new hope at the
sight of the well-known Pinnacly Berg. Brandy,
which sometimes proves an invaluable resource in
emergencies, had already been administered in table-
spoon doses. After a final and stronger dram, and a
longer rest, they resolved on a last effort to reach the
brig, which they attained at one hour after noon.
But words are inadequate to describe their suffer-
ings in this last stage of their journey. They were
completely delirious, and no longer entertained any
clear apprehension of what was transpiring. Like
men in a dream they staggered onward, blindly, un-
certainly. From an inspection of their footprints af-
terwards, it was seen that they had steered a bee-line
for the brig, guided by a kind of instinct, for they re-
membered nothing of their course.
When about two miles from the brig they were met
by Peterson and Whipple, with the dog traces, and a
supply of restoratives, for which Kane had sent a
message in advance by Bonsall. As soon as the frozen,
wayworn creatures were safe on board, Dr. Hayes
took them under his charge. All were suffering from
brain symptoms, functional, not organic, and to be rec-
tified by rest and abundant diet. Ohlsen was for some
time affected with blindness and strabismus; two
others underwent amputation of parts of the foot, but
without dangerous consequences; and two died in
spite of every attention. The rescue party had trav-
elled eighty or ninety miles, dragging a heavy sledge
for most of the distance. They had been out for
seventy-two hours, and halted in all eight hours. The

mean temperature of the whole time, including the
noontide hours of three clays was about 41I, or 730
below freezing point. Except at their two halts they
had no means of quenching their thirst, and they could
at no time intermit vigorous exercise without freezing.
It is difficult to find a severer "experience of the
perils of Arctic winter travelling, when all the cir-
cumstances are taken into consideration; and the
reader will readily admit that Dr. Kane showed as
much decision, sagacity, and heroic resolution, as any
leader of a forelorn hope," marching to certain
death under an enemy's fire.
From the depression that followed these events,
Kane and his party were roused by a visit from the
Esquimaux. The first who presented himself was a
tall, powerful, well-built fellow, with swarthy com-
plexion, and piercing black eyes. He wore a hooded
capote of mixed white and blue fox-skins, arranged
with some degree of taste; and booted trousers of
white bearskin; which, at the end of the foot, termin-
ated grimly with the animal's claws. This visitor was
quickly followed by a number of his countrymen. He
showed himself both frank and fearless, and went on
board the brig alone. Dr. Kane having satisfied him-
self that no mischief was intended, invited his com-
panions and some eight or nine at once accepted the
invitation. Others, meantime, as if contemplating a
long visit, brought up from behind the hummocks as
many as fifty-six fine dogs, with their sledges, and se -
cured them within two hundred feet of the brig, thrust-
ing their spears into the ice, and picketing the dogs
to them by the sealskin traces; it was evident the
animals understood the meaning of the operation.
The sledges were made of small pieces of porous bone,
very skillfully fastened together by thongs of hide; the
runners, which shone like burnished steel, were of
highly polished ivory, obtained from the tusks of the
They had no other weapons than knives which they
carried in their boots, and lances, which they lashed
to their sledges. The latter was a formidable arm.
The staff was made of the horn of the norwhal, or else
of the bear's thigh bones lashed together; wood was
not used. As for the knives of the party, a single rusty
hoop from a current-drifted cask might have furnished
them all; but the lancet-shaped tips of the spears
were made of steel, and riveted not unskillfully to the
tapering bony point. This steel was obtained from the
more southern tribes.
When the Esquimaux first came on board, they
showed themselves somewhat rude, rough, and unruly.
They spoke three or four at a time, to each other and


to their American hosts, laughing heartily at not being
understood, and then chattering away as rapidly as
before. They were perfect representatives of perpet-
ual motion, going everywhere, trying doors, and forc-
ing their way through dark passages, round casks
and boxes, and out into the light again, anxious to
touch and handle everything they saw, and soliciting
or endeavoring to secrete everything they touched.
Dr. Kane found it more difficult to restrain them, as
he was anxious they should not suppose him alarmed
by their numbers. But their curiosity was so in-
satiable, that it became necessary at last to use some-
thing like force to keep it within proper bounds.
Dr. Kane's whole company was mustered, and kept
constantly on the alert; but they did their spiriting
gently, and the utmost good humor prevailed. The
Esquimaux still continued to run in and about the
vessel, bringing in provisions, and carrying them out
again to their dogs on the ice; and this occupied
them until the afternoon, when they lay down to
sleep like tired children. Dr. Kane ordered them to
be made comfortable in the hold; and a large buffalo
robe was spread for their convenience in the vicinity
of the galley store.
In this store blazed a fire of coal; and the new
fuel, too hard for blubber, too soft for freestone,
filled them with amazement. They saw, however,
that it would work quite as efficiently as seals' fat,
and borrowing an iron pot and some melted water,
proceeded to parboil a couple of pieces of walrus-
meat. The main portion of their meal-that is five
pounds of meat a head-they preferred to eat raw.
It was observed that they did not all eat together,
but each man as he listed; and when he had done
eating he lay down to sleep, his raw chunk of meat
lying beside him. When he awoke, he took a few
additional bites, and then went to sleep again! They
did not lie down as Europeans do, but adopted a sitting
posture, with the head drooping on the breast, and
snoring (most of them) famously. In the morning
they departed, after selling four of their dogs and all
the walrus-meat they could spare for some needles
and beads and a supply of old cask staves.
At the end of April, leaving ten of his party in the
brig, Kane, with seven men, started on an exploring
expedition, resolved to follow up the ice-belt to the
Great Glacier of Humboldt, there obtain a replenish-
ment of pemmican from the caches made in the
previous October, and then make an attempt to cross
the ice to the American shore. This was to be the
" crowning expedition" of the campaign-to attain
the Ultima Thule of the Greenland shore, measure

the dreary frozen waste that spread between it and
the unknown West, and the mysterious regions be-
yond. It was not carried out in its entirety, but it
resulted, nevertheless, in geographical discoveries of
great interest.
Let us trace the eastern coast line of Smith Sound,
now acknowledged to be the sole highway to the
Pole, beginning at Refuge Harbor.
Cape Alexander may be taken as the westernmost
point of Greenland. Thence the shore strikes nearly
north and south, like the broad channel of which it
is the boundary;" but on reaching Refuge Inlet it
bends nearly at a right angle, and runs from west to
east until it has crossed the 65th meridian. Two in-
dentations occur between the cape and the inlet, the
first near the Etah Settlement, which was visited in
1855 by a rescue expedition under Lieutenant Hart-
stene and bearing his name; the other, the Lifeboat
Cove, of Dr. Kane's charts. In both, the great dead-
white glaciers strike down to the water line having
slowly forced their way from the gorges among the
rocky hills of the interior.
Besides these gaps or indentations, the coast line
is varied by a series of headlands differing much in
character, and at Cape Hatherton sinking into un-
dulating hills. All along it lies an archipelago of
islands, where the eider, the glaucous gull, and the
tern breed in countless numbers.
Cape Hatherton is a lofty and conspicuous mass of
porphyritic rock.
North of Refuge Harbor the coast assumes a very
different character. There are no deep bays, no de-
scending glaciers; and the deep fords and inlets do
not reappear until we approach Rensselaer Harbor.
There the geological structure changes also, and the
cliffs are distinguished by their bold diversity of form,
reminding the spectator of ruined temples, or the
shattered facades of glorious cathedrals and min-
sters. Their height sometimes exceeds one thousand
This grand and impressive structure extends as far
as the Great Glacier except where diversified by the
sweep of four great bays, each communicating with
deep gorges, which are watered by streams from the
inland ice-fields. The average elevation of the table-
land bordered by these cloven, rugged, precipitous
cliffs is about 9oo feet; but far away in the direction
of the mer de glaces of the unknown interior it rises
to 1,900 feet.
According to Dr. Kane, the most picturesque por-
tion of the North Greenland coast is met with be-
tween Cape George Russell and Dallas Bay. Here


the warm red sandstones contrast agreeably with the
cold whiteness of the snow-fields and the ice-plains,
and into the dreary Arctic landscapes, introduce
something of the seasonal changes of more genial
climates. The influence of the seasonal changes has
worked on the cliffs till they have assumed the ap-
pearance of jointed masonry, which the narrow, top-
most layer of greenstone caps with mimic battle-
A remarkable feature of this part of the coast was
distinguished by our explorers as the Three Brother
Turrets." The rocky precipice rose at the mouth of
a sun-lighted gorge into the fantastic resemblance of
a castle flanked with triple towers, boldly and clearly
Beyond this point, in latitude 70, a single cliff
of green stone rose from a crumbled base of sand-
stones, like the boldly chiseled rampart of an ancient
fortress. At its northern extremity, on the edge of a
profound ravine, which the action of the ice and
water excavated in the strata, stands a solitary
column or minaret-tower as sharply finished as if
wrought by the chisel of the sculptor. The length of
the shaft was estimated at 480 feet, and its pedestal
or plinth was 280 feet high.
I remember well," writes Dr. Kane, the emo-
tions of my party as it first broke upon our view.
Cold and sick as I was, I made a sketch of it, which
may have interest for the reader, though it scarcely
suggests the imposing dignity of this magnificent
landmark. Those who are happily familiar with the
writings of Tennyson, and have communed with his
spirit in the solitudes of the wilderness will compre-
hend the impulse that inscribed the scene with his
Beyond this Tennyson monument lies the Advance
Archipelago; and to the east extends the Great
Glacier that has received the name of the illustrious
German philosopher and traveller, Humbolt. It
seems impossible to convey in words any adequate
idea of the vast frozen river which connects instead
of dividing the two continents of America and Green-
land. Its curved face from Cape Agassiz to Cape

Forbes, measures fully sixty miles in length, and pre-
sents a grand wall or front of glistening ice, kindled
here and there into dazzling glory by the sun. Its
form is that of a wedge, the apex lying inland, at per,
haps not more than a single day's railroad travel
from the Pole." Thus it passes away into the cen-
tre of the Greenland continent, which is occupied by
one deep, unbroken sea of ice, twelve hundred miles
in length, that received a perpetual increase from the
water-shed of vast snow-mantled mountains. A
frozen sea, yet a sea in constant motion, rolling onward
slowly, laboriously, but surely, to find an outlet at
each fiord or valley, and to load the seas of Green-
land and the Atlantic with mighty icebergs, until,
having attained the northern limit of the land it over-
whelms, it pours out a mighty congealed torrent into
the unknown Arctic space !
The discoveries which we have thus summarized
were not made without much suffering on the part of
Dr. Kane and his followers. The heroic leader, in-
deed, almost succumbed to the terrible hardships of
this adventurous journey, and was carried back to
the sledge in so prostrated a condition that recovery
seemed hopeless. It may be doubted, indeed,
whether his strength was ever thoroughly recruited,
though the skill and attention of Dr. Hayes, and his
own undaunted spirit, rescued him from the jaws of
death. All the men were more or less afflicted, and
in the middle of June only three were able to do
duty, and of the officers Dr. Hayes alone was on
his feet.
The Great Glacier had effectually terminated the
labors of the explorers in that direction; and Dr.
Kane determined that their future search should be
made to the north and east of Captain Inglefield's
Cape Sabine. He still cherished a belief that some,
at least of the hardier members of Sir John
Franklin's expedition must be alive, and, having made
their way to the open spot of some tidal eddy, had
set bravely to work, under the teachings of an
Esquimau, or one of their own whalers, and trapped
the fox, speared the bear, and killed the seal, walrus,
and whale.



DR. HAYES-1860 AND 1869.


DR. HAYES, who had been the surgeon that accom-
panied Dr. Kane's famous expedition, was after his
return to America unwearied in advocating renewed
voyages of discovery and exploration in the Arctic
regions. He fixed on Grinnell Land as his base of
operations, and the method of advancing when that
land was reached was by sledge passages. His
energy and perseverance met due appreciation, and
a sufficient sum was placed at his disposal to enable
him to fit out a schooner named the United States, in
which, accompanied by Mr. Sonntag as astronomer,
Mr. Raddiffe, assistant astronomer, and a crew of
twelve, he sailed from Boston July 6, 186o. The
voyage to the coast of Greenland was uneventful, and
on the 3oth the ship entered the Arctic circle, and on
August 6th dropped anchor in the harbor of Proven,

one of the Danish settlements. On the 12th, the ex-
plorers were at Upernavik where three native hunters
and an interpreter were engaged. From this spot,
the limit of safe navigation, the hardships of the voy-
age began. On the 21st a halt was made at a place
named Tessusssak where four teams of dogs were
taken on board, and on the 23d, the United States
entered Melville Bay. Early in September she was
compelled to enter Hartstene Bay, where Dr. Hayes
resolved to establish his headquarters. Dr. Hayes
The duty of preparing the schooner for our win-
ter home devolved upon Mr. McCormick, with the
carpenter and such other assistance as he required.
After the sails had been unbent, the yards sent down,
and the topmasts housed, the upper deck was roofed
in-making a house eight feet high at the ridge and
six and a half at the side. A coating of tarred paper
closed the cracks, and four windows let in the light
while it lasted, and ventilated our quarters. Be-
tween decks there was much to do; the hold, after
being floored, scrubbed, and whitewashed, was con-
verted into a room for the crew; the cook-stove was
brought down from the galley and placed in the cen-
tre of it under the main hatch, in which hung our
simple apparatus for melting water from the snow or
ice. This was a funnel-shaped double cylinder of
galvanized iron connecting with the stove-pipe, and
was called the "snow melter." A constant stream
poured from it into a large cask, and we had always
a supply of the purest water, fully ample for every
Into these quarters the crew moved on the first of
October, and the out-door work of preparation being
mainly completed, we entered then, with the cere-
mony of a holiday dinner, upon our winter life. And
the dinner was by no means to be despised. Our
soup was followed by an Upernavik salmon, and the
table groaned under a mammoth haunch of venison,
which was flanked by a ragout of rabbit and a venison
The sun sank on October 15th, and next day the



DR. HA YES-z86o AND 1869.

doctor tried his hand at driving his dog team. This
account is spirited: "I drove up the Fiord in the
morning, and have returned only a short time since.
This Fiord lies directly north of the harbor, and it
forms the termination of Hartstene Bay. It is about
six miles deep by from two to four wide. Jensen was
my driver, and I have a superb turn-out-twelve dogs
and a fine sledge. The animals are in most excellent
condition-every one of them strong and healthy;
and they are very fleet. They whirl my Greenland
sledge over the ice with a celerity not calculated for
weak nerves. I have actually ridden behind them

dogs are just twenty feet from the forward part of the
The team is guided solely by the whip and voice.
The strongest dogs are placed on the outside, and the
whole team is swayed to right and left according as
the whip falls on the snow to the one side or the
other, or as it touches the leading dogs, as it is sure
to do if they do not obey the gentle hint with suffi-
cient alacrity. The voice aids the whip, but in all
emergencies the whip is the only real reliance. Your
control over the team is exactly in proportion to your
skill in the use of it. The lash is about .four feet


over six measured miles in twenty-eight minutes; and,
without stopping to blow the team, have returned over
the track in thirty-three. We harness the dogs each
with a single trace, and these traces are of a length
to suit the fancy of the driver-the longer the better,
for they are then not so easily tangled, the draught of
the outside dogs is more direct, and, if the team comes
upon thin ice, and breaks through, your chances of
escape from immersion are in proportion to their dis-
tance from you. The traces are all of the same
length, and hence the dogs run side by side, and,
when properly harnessed, their heads are in a line.
My traces are so measured that the shoulders of the

longer than the traces, and is tipped with a' cracker'
of hard sinew, with which a skilful driver can draw
blood if so :aclined ; and he can touch either one of
his animals on any particular spot that may suit his
purpose. Jensen had to-day a young refractory dog
in the team, and, having had his patience quite ex-
hausted, he resolved upon extreme measures. 'You
see dat beast ?' said he. I takes a piece out of his
ear; '-and sure enough, crack went the whip, the
hard sinew wound round the tip of the ear and
snipped it off as nicely as with a knife.
This long lash, which is but a thin tapering strip
of raw seal-hide, is swung with a whip-stock only


two and a half feet long. It is very light and is con-
sequently hard to handle. The peculiar turn of the
wrist necessary to get it rolled out to its destination
is a most difficult undertaking. It requires long and
patient practice. I have persevered, and my perse-
verance has been rewarded; and, if I am obliged to
turn driver on emergency, I feel equal to the task, but
I fervently hope that the emergency may not arise
which requires me to display my skill.
It is the very hardest kind of hard work. That
merciless lash must be going continually; and it must
be merciless or it is of no avail. The dogs are quick
to detect the least weakness of the driver, and meas-
ure him on the instant. If not thoroughly convinced
that the soundness of their skins is quite at his
mercy, they go where they please. If they see a fox
crossing the ice, or come upon a bear track, or 'wind '
a seal, or sight a bird, away they dash over snow-
drifts and hummocks, pricking up their short ears and
curling up their long bushy tails for a wild, wolfish
race after the game. If the whip-lash goes out with
fierce snap, the ears and the tails drop, and they go
on about their proper business; but woe be unto you
if they get the control. I have seen my own driver
only to-day sorely put to his metal, and not until he
had brought a yell of pain from almost every dog in
the team did he conquer their obstinacy. They were
running after a fox, and were taking us toward what
appeared to be unsafe ice. The wind was blowing
hard, and the lash was sometimes driven back into
the driver's face-hence the difficulty, The whip,
however, finally brought them to reason, and in full
view of the game, and within a few yards of the
treacherous ice, they came first down into a limping
trot and then stopped, most unwillingly. Of course,
this made them very cross, and a general fight-fierce
and angry-now followed, which was not quieted
until the driver had sailed in among them and knocked
them to right and left with his hard hickory whip-
stock. I have had an adventure with the same team,
and know to my cost what an unruly set they are,
and how hard it is to get the mastery of them; but
once mastered, like a spirited horse, they are obedient
enough; but also, like that noble animal, they require
now and then to have a very positive reminder as to
whom the obedience is owing.
Wishing to try my hand, I set out to take a turn
round the harbor. The wind was blowing at my
back, and when I had gone far enough, and wanted to
wheel round and return, the dogs were not so minded.
There is nothing they dislike so much as to face the
wind; and, feeling very fresh, they were evidently

ready for some sport. Moreover, they may, perhaps,
have wanted to see what manner of man this new
driver was. They were very familiar with him per-
sonally, for he had petted them often enough; but
they had not before felt the strength of his arm.
After much difficulty I brought them at last up to
the course, but I could keep them there only by con-
stant use of the lash; and since this was three times
out of four blown back into my face, it was evident
that I could not long hold out; besides, my face was
freezing in the wind. My arm, not used to such vio-
lent exercise, soon fell almost paralyzed, and the whip-
lash trailed behind me on the snow. The dogs were
not slow to discover that something was wrong. They
looked back over their shoulders inquiringly, and, dis-
covering that the lash was not coming, they ventured
to diverge gently to the right. Finding the effort
not resisted, they gained courage and increased their
speed; and at length they wheeled short round,
turned their tails to the wind, and dashed off on their
own course, as happy as a parcel of boys freed from
the restraints of the school-room, and with the wild
rush of a dozen wolves. And how they danced along
and barked and rejoiced in their short-lived liberty !
If the reader has ever chanced to drive a pair of
unruly horses for a few hours, and has had occasion to
find rest for his aching arms on a long, steep hill, he
will understand the satisfaction which I took in find-
ing the power returning to mine. I could again use
the whip, and managed to turn the intractable team
among a cluster of hummocks and snow-drifts, which
somewhat impeded their progress. Springing sud-
denly off, I caught the upstander and capsized the
sledge. The points of the runners were driven deeply
into the snow, and my runaways were anchored. A
vigorous application of my sinew-tipped lash soon con-
vinced them of the advantages of obedience, and when
I turned up the sledge and gave them the signal to
start they trotted off in the meekest manner possible,
facing the wind without rebelling, and giving me no
further trouble. I think they will remember the les-
son-and so shall I.
These dogs are singular animals, and are a curious
study. They have their leader and their sub-leaders
-the rulers and the ruled-like any other commu-
nity desiring good government. The governed get
what rights they can, and the governors bully them
continually in order that they may enjoy security
against rebellion, and live in peace. And a commu-
nity of dogs is really organized on the basis of correct
principles. As an illustration,-my teams are under
the control of a big aggressive brute, who sports a

DR. HA YES--86o AND 1869.

dirty red uniform with snuff-colored facings, and has
sharp teeth; he possesses immense strength, and his
every movement shows that he is perfectly conscious
of it. In the twinkling of an eye he can trounce any
dog in the whole herd; and he seems to possess the
faculty of destroying conspiracies, cabals, and all evil
designing against his stern rule. None of the other
dogs like him, but they cannot help themselves; they
are afraid to turn against him, for when they do so
there is no end to the chastisements which they re-
ceive. Now Oosisoak (for that is his name) has a
rival, a huge, burly fellow, with black uniform and
white collar. This dog is called Karsuk, which ex-
presses the complexion of his coat. He is larger

advantage; for, if the present relations of things
were disturbed, my community of dogs would be in a
state of anarchy. Oosisoak would go into exile, and
would die of laziness and a broken heart, and great
and bloody would be the feuds between the rival in-
terests, led by Karsuk and Erebus, before it was de-
cided which is the better team.
Oosisoak has other traits befitting greatness. He
has sentiment. He has chosen one to share the glory
of his reign, to console his sorrows, and to lick his
wounds when fresh from the bloody field. Oosisoak
has a queen; and this object of his affection, this
idol of his heart, is never absent from his side. She
runs beside him in the team, and she fights for him


than Oosisoak, but not so active nor so intelligent.
Occasionally he has a set-to with his master; but he
always comes off second best, and his unfortunate
followers are afterwards flogged in detail by the mer-
ciless red-coat. The place of Oosisoak, when har-
nessed to the sledge, is on the left of the line, and
that of Karsuk on the right.
There is another powerful animal which we call
Erebus, who governs Sonntag's team as Oosisoak
governs mine, and he can whip Karsuk, but he never
has a bout with my leader except at his peril and that
of his followers. And thus they go along, fighting to
preserve the peace, and chawing each other up to
maintain the balance of power; and this is all to my

harder than any one of his male subjects. In return
for this devotion he allows her to do pretty much as
she pleases. She may steal the bone out of his
mouth, and he gives it up to her with a sentimental
grimace that is quite instructive. But it happens
sometimes that he is himself hungry, and he trots
after her, and when he thinks that she has got her
share he growls significantly; whereupon she drops
the bone without even a murmur. If the old fellow
happens to be particularly cross when a reindeer is
thrown to the pack, he gets upon it with his forefeet,
begins to gnaw away at the flank, growling a wolfish
growl all the while, and no dog dare to come near
until he has had his fill except Queen Arkadik (for by


that name is she known), nor can she approach ex-
cept in one direction. She must come alongside of
him, and crawl between his fore legs and eat lovingly
from the spot where he is eating."
During October preparations were made for inland
exploration, and on October 22d, the travellers set out
for the glacier to whose summit they arrived on the
following day. The sides of this moving ice-mass
were rough, but the centre was comparatively smooth,
and they were able to make thirty to twenty miles a
day, when a fall of the temperature to 34 below zero
and a fierce gale of wind drove them back to their
winter quarters. This was the first successful at-
tempt to penetrate the interior over this inland ice-
The winter was passed in short explorating excur-
sions and in hunting expeditions, but the voyagers
were saddened by the death of Mr. Sonntag, who, late
in December, started for Whale Sound. He passed
Cape Alexander without any trouble, and was on his
way to Northumberland Island, when, feeling chilly,
he left the sledge and ran ahead of the dogs. He
thus came unawares on thin ice, which broke beneath
his weight, and was rescued by his attendant, Hans.
He at once set out to return to a place of shelter,
but when he arrived at Sorfalik, where there was a
hut, he was stiff and speechless, and next day died.
Not till the following March was the body recovered
and interred by his cruising messmates.
By that time all the arrangements for a journey
northward were completed, the sun had returned, and
on the 16th March Dr. Hayes started to explore the
track and determine whether it were better to follow
Kane's route on the Greenland coast or cross the
Sound and seek to reach a favorable base on Grinnell
Land. Passing with his sledge Sunrise Point and
Point Hatherton, Hayes discovered a cairn perched
on a conspicuous point and in it a glass vial, contain-
ing this record :
The U. S. steamer Arctic touched here and ex-
amined thoroughly for traces of Dr. Kane and his
associates, without finding anything more than a vial,
"with a small piece of cartridge-paper with the letters
*O. K. Aug. 1853,' some matches, and a ship's rifle-
ball. We go from this unknown point to Cape Hath-
erton for a search.
Lieut. Comdg. Arctic Expedition.
8 P. M. August 16, 1855.
P. S. Should the U. S. bark Release find this, she
will understand that we are bound for a search at
Cape Hatherton. H. J. H."

The view from this point was not encouraging,
the ice was very rough, and jammed against the
shore and piled up in great ridges.
The view decided his course of action. Cairn
Point would be his starting-point if he crossed the
Sound, and a most convenient position for a depot of
supplies in the event of being obliged to hold up on
the Greenland coast. Accordingly, he took from the
sledges all of the provisions except what was neces-
sary for a six days' consumption, and discovering a
suitable cleft in a rock, deposited it therein, covering
it over with heavy stones, to protect it from the bears,
intending to proceed up the coast for a general
inspection of the condition of the ice on the Sound.
These various operations consumed the day; so
they fed the dogs and dug into another snow-bank,
and got through another night after the fashion of
Arctic travellers, which is not much of a fashion to
boast of. They slept and did not freeze, and more
than this they did not expect.
The next day's journey was made with light
sledges, but it was much more tedious than the two
days preceding; for the track was rough, and during
the greater part of the time it was as much as the
dogs could do to get through the hummocked ice
with nothing on the sledge but our little food and
sleeping gear, As for riding, that was entirely out of
the question. After nine hours of this sort of work,
during which they made not over twenty miles, they
were well satisfied to draw up to the first convenient
snow-bank for another nightly burrow. In the shelter
they constructed it was noticed with surprise that the
temperature could not be made to rise above 30',
and various conjectures as to the cause were made,
but on taking the thermometer out into the open air,
it sank rapidly to 682 below zero, that is 10oo0
below the freezing point of water. This is one of the
lowest temperatures on record, yet in the profound
calm of the air and the blazing sunlight it was per-
ceptible to the senses.
This experimental journey proved that the road
along the Greenland coast was wholly impracticable.
The condition of the ice was very different from what
it was in 1853-54. Then the coast ice was mainly
smooth, and the hummocks were not met until they
had gone from ten to twenty miles from the shore.
Now there was no such belt. The winter had set in
while the ice was crowding upon the land, and the
pressure had been tremendous. Vast masses were
piled up along the track, and the whole sea was but
one confused jumble of ice-fragments, forced up by
the pressure to an enormous height, and frozen

DR. HA YES-z86o AND 1869.

together in that position. The whole scene was the
Rocky Mountains on a small scale; peak after peak,
ridge after ridge, spur after spur, separated by deep
valleys, into which they descended over a rough
declivity, and then again ascended on the other side,
to cross an elevated crest and repeat the operation.
The travelling was very laborious. It was but an end-
less clambering over ice-masses of every form and size.
On the homeward journey they halted at Cairn
Point, and then drove on to the schooner out of which
they transferred to Cairn Point, the stores needful for
their summer journey across Smith Sound.
My field party," Dr. Hayes writes, consisted of
every available officer and man in the schooner,
twelve in number. We were all ready to start at
seven o'clock; and when I joined them on the ice
beside the schooner their appearance was as pictur-
esque as it was animated. In advance stood Jensen,
impatiently rolling out his long whip-lash, and his
eight dogs, harnessed to his sledge,' The Hope,' were
as impatient as he. Next came Knorr with six dogs
and the Perseverance,' to the upstander of which he
had tied a little blue flag bearing this, his motto,
Toujours iprt.' Then came a lively group of eight
men, each with a canvas belt across his shoulder, to
which was attached a line that fastened him to the
sledge. Alongside the sledge stood McCormick and
Dodge, ready to steer it among the hummocks, and
on the sledge was mounted a twenty-foot metallic
life-boat with which I hoped to navigate the Polar
Sea. The mast was up and the sails were spread,
and from the peak floated our boat's ensign, which
had seen service in two former Arctic and in one
Antarctic voyage, and at the masthead were run up
the Masonic emblems. Our little signal-flag was
stuck in the stern-sheets. The sun was shining
brightly into the harbor, and everybody was filled
with enthusiasm, and ready for the hard pull that was
to come. Cheer after cheer met me as I came down the
stairway from the deck. At a given signal Radcliffe,
who was left in charge of the vessel, touched off the
'swivel;' March,' cried McCormick, crack went the
whips, the dogs sprang into their collars, the men
stretched their 'track ropes,' and the cavalcade
moved off."
For several days after Cairn Point was reached a
severe storm kept the party prisoners, but at the end
of the tenth day they set out to cross the Sound with
a moderate load. The ice was rough, and all idea of
taking a boat across had to be abandoned, and on
the 26th of April they had only advanced thirty miles.
On the 26th Dr. Hayes writes in his diary;

I feel to-night that I am getting rapidly to the
end of my rope. Each day strengthens the convic-
tion, not only that we can never reach Grinnell Land,
with provisions for a journey up the coast to the
Polar Sea, but that it cannot be clone at all. I have
talked to the officers, and they are all of this opinion.
They say the thing is hopeless. Dodge put it thus:
'You might as well try to cross the City of New
York over the house-tops!' They are brave and
spirited men enough, lack not courage nor persever-
ance; but it does seem as if one must own that there
are some difficulties which cannot be surmounted.
But I have in this enterprise too much at stake to
own readily to defeat, and we will try again to-mor-
April 27th.
"Worse and worse We have to-day made but little
progress, the sledge is badly broken, and I am brought
to a stand-still. There does not appear to be the
ghost of a chance for me. Must I own myself a de-
feated man? I fear so.
I was never in all my life so disheartened as I am
to-night; not even when, in the midst of a former
winter, I bore up with my party through hunger and
cold, beset by hostile savages, and, without food or
means of transportation, encountered the uncertain
fortunes of the Arctic night in the ineffectual pursuit
of succor.
Smith Sound has given me but one succession of
baffling obstacles. Since I first caught sight of Cape
Alexander, last autumn, as the vanishing storm un-
covered its grizzly head, I have met with but ill-
fortune. My struggles to reach the west coast were
then made against embarrassments of the mostgrave
description, and they were not abandoned until the
winter closed.
Now the ice is infinitely worse than it then was,
and I have been forced to the conclusion that the at-
tempt to cross the Sound with sledges has resulted in
failure; and that my only hope to accomplish that ob-
ject now rests in the schooner. Having the whole of
the season before me, I think that I can, even without
steam, get over to Cape Isabella, and work thence up
the west shore, and, even should I not be able to get
as far up the Sound as I once hoped, yet I can, no
doubt, secure a harbor for next winter in some eligi-
b!e position. Coming to this conclusion, I have de-
termined to send back the men, and I have given
McCormick full directions what to do, in order that
the vessel may be prepared when the ice breaks up
and liberates her. He is to cradle the schooner in
the ice by digging around her sides; repair the dam-


age done last autumn, and mend the broken spars,
and patch the sails.
For myself, I stay to fight away at the battle as
best I can with my dogs.
The men have given me twenty-five days of good
service, and have aided me nearly half-way across
the Sound with about eight hundred pounds of
food; and this is all that they can do. Their work is
Although the chance of getting through with the
dogs looks hopeless; yet, hopeless though the pros-
Dect, I feel that, when disembarrassed of the men,
I ought to make one further effort. I have picked my
companions, and have given them their orders.
They will be Knorr, Jensen, and sailor McDonald
-plucky men all, if I mistake not, and eager
for the journey. And now when I think of this
new trial which I shall make to-moricw, my
hopes revive; but when I remember the fruitless
struggles of the past few days and think of these
hummocks, with peak after peak rising one above the
other, and with ridge after ridge in endless succession
intersecting each other at all angles and in all direc-
tions, I must own that my heart almost fails me and
my thoughts incline me to abandon the effort and re-
treat from what everybody, from Jensen down, says
cannot be done, and rely upon the schooner for cross-
ing the Sound. But I have not failed yet! I have
fourteen dogs and three picked men left to me; and
now, abandoning myself to the protecting care of an
all-wise Providence, who has so often led me to suc-
cess and shielded me from danger, I renew the strug-
gle to-morrow with hope and determination. Away
with despondency !"
In such spirits did they set out, but their progress
was still slow, and on May 5th the entry in the diary
is, Little progress to record. Affairs look rather
blue," then day after day are the words Battling
away as before," Still battling away,"" At the same
hopeless work," till, on May IIth, the cheerful line oc-
curs, In camp at last, and as happy as we can be
who have achieved success."
The journey across the Sound from Cairn Point
was unexampled in Arctic traveling. The dis-
tance from land to land, as the crow flies, did not
exceed eighty miles; and yet the journey had con-
sumed thirty-one days-but little more than two
miles daily. The track, however, which they were
forced to choose, was often at least three times that
of a straight line; and since almost every mile of that
tortuous route was traveled over three and often five
times, in bringing up the separate portions of the

cargo, our actual distance did not probably average
less than sixteen miles daily, or about five hundred
miles in all, between Cairn Point and Cape Hawks.
The last forty miles, made with dog-sledges alone,
occupied fourteen days-a circumstance which will, of
itself, exhibit the difficult nature of the undertaking,
especially when it is borne in mind that forty miles to
an ordinary team of dogs, over usually fair ice, is a
trifling matter for five hours, and would not fatigue
the team half so much as a single hour's pulling of
the same load over such hummocks, as confronted us
throughout this entire journey.
They did not halt longer at Cape Hawks than was
needful to rest the teams, when they commenced the
journey up the coast. The first day's march was
across the wide bay between Cape Hawks and Napo-
leon. Owing to the conformation of the coast, the
bay had been sheltered from the winds, and the snows
of the winter, in consequence, lay loose upon the sur-
face of the ice. They had, however, no alternative but
to cross the bay, for to go outside was to plunge again
into the hummocks, The snows had accumulated to
the depth of more than two feet, through which the
wading was very toilsome. The land-ice was reached
next morning, and a brisk run to the north was made,
where, at the furthest point reached in 1854, a camp
was made. They were now in Kennedy Channel, and
as they proceeded experienced, in even a greater degree
than in South. Sound, the immense force of the ice
The ice was much less rough than that which we
had crossed in Smith Sound, owing to the old floes
having been less closely impacted while that part of
the sea was freezing up during the last autumn or
winter. Hence, there was much more new ice. It
was evident that the sea had been open to a very
late period; and, indeed, like the water off Port
Foulke, had not closed up completely until the spring.
It was unusual to see the ice so thin and washed
away thus early in the season. Small patches of open
water were visible at points where the conformation
of the coast warranted the conclusion that an eddy of
the current had operated upon the ice more rapidly
than in other places.
Hayes was struck with the circumstance that no
land was visible to the eastward, as it would not have
been difficult through such an atmosphere to distin-
guish land at the distance of fifty or sixty miles. It
would appear, therefore, that Kennedy Channel is
something wider than hitherto supposed. To the
northeast the sky was dark and cloudy, and gave
evidence of water; and one of the crew, who

DR. HA YES-I86o AND 1869.

watched the rapid advance of the season with solici-
tude, was not slow to direct attention to the water-
The temperature of the air was strangely mild, and,
indeed, distressingly so for travelling, although it pos-
sessed its conveniences in enabling them to sleep upon
the sledges in the open air with comfort. The lowest
temperature during the day was 20 ; while, at one
time, it rose to the freezing-point-the sun blazing
down while they trudged on under their heavy load of
furs. The day seemed really sultry. To discard furs
and travel in shirt-sleeves was, of course, the first
impulse; but to do so added to the load on the
sledges, and it was of the first importance that
thedogs should be spared every pound of unneces-
sary weight; so each one carried his own coat upon
his back, and perspired after his own fashion.
The distance accomplished amounted by this time
to four hundred and fifty miles from the schooner, and
Dr. Hayes began to congratulate himself on his suc-
cess, when a serious accident to his strongest man,
Jansen, troubled him exceedingly as he not only lost
his services, but had to leave McDonald in charge of
him while he pushed on alone with Knorr. The re-
sult of this brave undertaking we subjoin in Dr.
Hayes's own language:
My purpose now was to make the best push I could,
and, travelling as far as my provisions warranted,
reach the highest attainable latitude and secure such
a point of observation as would enable me to form a
definite opinion respecting the sea before me, and the
prospects of reaching and navigating it with a boat
or with the schooner. I had already reached a posi-
tion somewhat to the northward of that attained by
Morton, of Dr. Kane's expedition, in June, 1854, and
was looking out upon the same sea from a point probably
about sixty miles to the northward and westward of
Cape Constitution, where, only a month later in the
season, his further progress was arrested by open
It only remained for me now to extend the survey
as far to the north as possible. By the judicious hus-
banding of my resources I had still within my hands
ample means to guarantee a successful termination to
a journey which the increasing darkness and extent
of the water-sky to the northeast seemed to warn me
was approaching its climax.
Our first day's journey was not particularly en-
couraging. The ice in the bay was rough and the
snow deep, and, after nine hours of laborious work,
we were compelled to halt for rest, having made,
since setting out, not more than as many miles. Our

progress had been much retarded by a dense fog
which settled over us soon after starting, and which,
by preventing us from seeing thirty yards on either
side, interfered with the selection of a track ; and we
were, in consequence, forced to pursue our course by
The fog clearing up by the time we had become
rested, and the land being soon reached, we pursued
our way along the ice-foot with much the same fortune
as had befallen us since striking the shore above Cape
Napoleon. The coast presented the same features-
great wall-sided cliffs rising at our left, with a jagged
ridge of crushed ice at our right, forming a white
fringe, as it were, to the dark rocks. We were, in
truth, journeying along a winding gorge or valley,
formed by the land on one side and the ice on the
other; for this ice-fringe rose about fifty feet above
our heads, and, except here and there where a cleft
gave us an outlook upon the sea, we were as com-
pletely hemmed in as if in a cation of the Cordilleras.
Occasionally, however, a bay broke in upon the con-
tinuity of the lofty coast, and as we faced to the west-
ward along its southern margin, a sloping terraced
valley opened before us, rising gently from the sea to
the base of the mountains, which rose with imposing
grandeur. I was never more impressed with the
dreariness and desolation of an Arctic landscape.
Although my situation on the summit of the Green-
land mer de glace, in October of the last year, had
apparently left nothing unsupplied to the imagination
that was needed to fill the picture of boundless steril-
ity, yet here the variety of forms seemed to magnify
the impression on the mind, and to give a wider play
to the fancy; and as the eye wandered from peak to
peak of the mountains as they rose one above the
other, and rested upon the dark and frost-degraded
cliffs, and followed along the ice-foot, and overlooked
the sea, and saw in every object the silent forces of
Nature moving on through the gloom of winter and
the sparkle of summer, now, as they had moved for
countless ages, unobserved save by the eye of God
alone, I felt how puny indeed are all men's works and
efforts; and when I sought for some token of living
thing, some track of wild beast-a fox, or bear, or
reindeer-which had elsewhere always crossed me
in my journeyings, and saw nothing but two feeble
men and our struggling dogs, it seemed indeed
as if the Almighty had frowned upon the hills and
Since leaving Cairn Point we had looked most
anxiously for bears; but although we had seen many
tracks, especially about Cape Frazer, not a single


animal had been observed. A bear, indeed, would
have been a Godsend to us, and would have placed
me wholly beyond anxiety respecting the strength of
the dogs, as it would not only have put new life into
them, but it would have given them several days of
more substantial rations than the dried beef which
they had been so long fed upon.
After a ten hours' march, we found ourselves once
more compelled to camp; and four hours of the fol-
lowing day brought us to the southern cape of a bay
which was so deep that, as in other cases of like
obstruction, we determined to cross over it rather
than to follow the shore line. We had gone only a
few miles when we found our progress suddenly
arrested. Our course was made directly for a con-
spicuous headland bounding the bay to the north-
ward, over a strip of old ice lining the shore. This
headland seemed to be about twenty miles from us,
or near Latitude 820, and I was very desirous of
reaching it; but, unhappily, the old ice came sud-
denly to an end, and, after scrambling over the fringe
of hummocks which margined it, we found ourselves
upon ice of the late winter. The unerring instinct of
the dogs warned us of approaching danger. They
were observed for some time to be moving with
unusual caution, and finally they scattered to right
and left, and refused to proceed further. This be-
havior of the dogs was too familiar to me to leave
any doubt as to its meaning; and moving forward in
advance, I quickly perceived that the ice was rotten
and unsafe. Thinking that this might be merely a
local circumstance, resulting from some peculiarity of
the current, we doubled back upon the old floe and
made another trial further to the eastward, Walking
now in advance of the dogs they were inspired with
greater courage. I had not proceeded far when I
found the ice again giving way under the staff, with
which I sounded its strength, and again we turned
back and sought a still more eastern passage.
Two hours consumed in efforts of this kind, during
which we had worked about four miles out to sea,
convinced me that the ice outside the bay was wholly
impassible, and that perseverance could only end in
disappointment; for if we happened to break through,
we should not only be in great jeopardy but would, by
getting wet, greatly retard, if not wholly defeat our
progress to the opposite shore. Accordingly we drew
back toward the land, seeking safety again upon the
old floe, and hauling then to the westward, endeav-
ored to cross over further up the bay; but here the
same conditions existed as outside, and the dogs res-
olutely refused to proceed as soon as we left the old

ice. Not wishing to be defeated in my purpose of
crossing over, we held still further west and perse-
vered in our efforts until convinced that the bay could
not be crossed, and then we had no alternative but to
retreat to the land-ice and follow its circuit to our
With the view of ascertaining how far this course
was likely to carry us from a direct line, I walked,
while the dogs were resting, a few miles along the
shore until I could see the head of the bay, distant
not less than twenty miles. To make this long detour
would occupy at least two if not three days,-an
undertaking not justified by the state of our provisions
-and we therefore went into camp, weary with more
than twelve hours' work, to await the issue of further
observation on the morrow.
Surprised at the condition of the ice in the bay, I
determined to climb the hill above the camp, with the
view of ascertaining the probable cause of our being
thus baffled; and to ascertain if a more direct route
could not be found further to the eastward than that
by the land-ice of the bay; for it was now clear that
it was only possible to continue our journey northward
in one or the other of these directions. The labors of
the day made it necessary, however, that I should
procure some rest before attempting to climb the hill
to such an elevation as would enable me to obtain a
clear view of the condition of the ice to the opposite
After a most profound and refreshing sleep, inspired
by a weariness which I had rarely before experienced
to an equal degree, I climbed the steep hill-side to the
top of a ragged cliff, which I supposed to be about
.eight hundred feet above the level of the sea.
The view that I had from this elevation furnished
a solution of the cause of my progress being arrested
on the previous day,
The ice was everywhere in the same condition as
in the mouth of the bay, across which I had endeav-
ored to pass. A broad crack, starting from the mid-
dle of the bay, stretched over the sea, and uniting
with other cracks as it meandered to the eastward, it
expanded as the delta of some mighty river discharg-
inginto the ocean, and under a water-sky, which hung
upon the northern and eastern horizon, it was lost in
the open sea.
Standing against the dark sky at the north, there
was seen in dim outline the white sloping summit of a
noble headland-the most northern known land upon
the globe. I judged it to be in Latitude 820 30', or
four hundred and fifty miles from the North Pole,
Nearer, another bold cape stood forth; and nearer

DR. HA YES-z86o AND 1869.

still the headland, for which I had been steering my
course the day before, rose majestically from the sea,
as if .pushing up into the very skies a lofty mountain
peak, upon which the winter had dropped its diadem
of snows. There was no land visible except the coast
upon which I stood.
The sea beneath me was a mottled sheet of white
and dark patches, these latter being either soft decay-
ing ice or places where the ice had wholly disap-
peared. These spots were heightened in intensity of
shade and multiplied in size as they receded, until the
belt of the water-sky blended them altogether into
one uniform color of dark blue. The old and solid
floes (some a quarter of a mile, and others miles,
across) and the massive ridges and wastes of hum-
mocked ice which lay piled between them and around
their margins, were the only parts of the sea which
retained the whiteness and solidity of winter.
I reserve for another time all discussion of the
value of the observations which I made from this
point. Suffice it here to say that all the evidences
showed that I stood upon the shores of the Polar
Basin, and that the broad ocean lay at my feet; that
the land upon which I stood, culminating in the dis-
tant cape before me, was but a point of land project-
ing far into it, like the Ceverro Vostochnoi Noss of
the opposite coast of Siberia; and that the little mar-
gin of ice which lined the shore was being steadily
worn away; and within a month, the whole sea would
be as free from ice as I had seen the north water of
Baffin Bay-interrupted only by a moving pack,
drifting to and fro at the will of the winds and cur-
To proceed further north was, of course, impossi-
ble. The crack which I have mentioned would, of
itself, have prevented us from making the opposite
land, and the ice outside the bay was even more de-
cayed than inside. Several open patches were ob-
served near the shore, and in one of these there was
seen a flock of Dovekie. At several points during our
march up Kennedy Channel I had observed their
breeding places, but I was not a little surprised to see
the birds at this locality so early in the season. Seve-
ral burgomaster-gulls flew overhead, making their
way northward, seeking the open water for their feed-
ing grounds and summer haunts. Around these
haunts of the birds there is never ice after the early
days of June.
And now my journey was ended, and I had nothing
to do but make my way back to Port Foulke. The
advancing season, the rapidity with which the thaw
was taking place, the certainty that the open water

was eating into Smith Sound as well through Baffin
Bay from the south, as through Kennedy Channel
from the north, thus endangering my return across to'
the Greenland shore, warned me that I had lingered
long enough.
It now only remained for us to plant our flag idr
token of our discovery, and to deposit a record iri
proof of our presence. The flags were tied to thd
whip-lash, and suspended between two tall rocks, and
while we were building a cairn, they were allowed tcr
flutter in the breeze; then, tearing a leaf from my
note-book, I wrote on it as follows :

This point, the most northern land that has ever been
reached, was visited by the undersigned, May 18, I9;
I861, accompanied by George F. Knoor, travelling witl
a dog-sledge. We arrived here after a toilsome marcl
of forty-six days from my winter harbor, near Cape
Alexander, at the mouth of Smith Sound. My observa-
tions place us in Latitude 81 35', Longitude 70 30', W:
Our further progress was stopped by gotten ice and
cracks. Kennedy Channel appears to expand into the
Polar Basin ; and, satisfied that it is navigable at least
during the months of July, August, and September, i
go hence to my winter harbor, to make another trial td
get through Smith Sound with my vessel, after the ice
breaks up this summer.
Aay I9, l861."

This record being carefully secured in a small glass
vial which I brought for the purpose, was deposited
beneath the cairn; and then our faces were turned
homewards. But I quit the place with reluctance;
It possessed a fascination for me, and it was with no
ordinary sensations that I contemplated my situation;
with one solitary companion, in that hitherto untrod-
den desert; while my nearness to the earth's axis, the
consciousness of standing upon land far beyond the
limits of previous observation, the reflections which
crossed my mind respecting the vast ocean which lay
spread out before me, the thought that these ice-
girdled waters might lash the shores of distant is:
lands where dwell human beings of an unknown race;
were circumstances calculated to invest the very air
with mystery, to deepen the curiosity, and to strength:
en the resolution to persevere in my determination td
sail upon this sea and to explore its furthest limits '
and as I recalled the struggles which had been made
to reach this sea-through the ice and across the ice
--by generations of brave men, it seemed as if the
spirits of these Old Worthies came to encourage me,
as their experience had already guided me; and I
felt that I had within my grasp the great and nota-


ble thing" which had inspired the zeal of sturdy
Frobrisher, ano that I had achieved the hope of match-
less Parry.
It may be interesting to know what the flags
thus given to the Arctic breezes at "Hayes's
Furthest were : They were a small United States
flag (boat's ensign), which had been carried in the
South Sea Expedition of Captain Wilkes, U. S. N.,
and afterwards in the Arctic Expeditions of Lieut.
Comg. DeHaven and Dr. Kane; a little United States
flag which had been committed to Mr. Sonntag by
the ladies of the Albany Academy; two diminutive
Masonic flags intrusted to Dr. Hayes-one by the
Kane Lodge, of New York, the other by the Columbia
Lodge, of Boston; and the Expedition signal-flag,
bearing the Expedition emblem, the Pole Star-a
crimson star, on a white field-also a gift from fair
hands. Being under the obligation of a sacred
promise to unfurl all these flags at the most northern
point attained, it was his pleasing duty to carry them
with him-a duty rendered none the less pleasing by
the circumstance that, together, they did not weigh
three pounds.
On June 3, the doctor was on board the schooner
once more, having travelled not less than 1,300 miles
since April 3d, and not less than i,600 since his first
setting out in March. He came back fully convinced
that a route to the Pole free enough for steam naviga-
tion is open every summer from Cape Frazer. His
further course was dependent on the condition of the
schooner, which had been seriously injured. It was
found that the damage which the vessel had sus-
tained, was so great that to strike ice again would be
sure to sink her. It was resolved therefore to return
home, refit, and add steam-power to his resources,
and the doctor, after stating at length the reasons for
this determination, and the experiences which con-
firmed, he adds:
I have secured the following important advan-
tages for the future, and, with these I must, perforce,
rest satisfied for the present:
i. I have brought my party through without sick-
ness, and have thus shown that the Arctic winter of
itself breeds neither scurvy nor discontent.
2. I have shown that men may subsist themselves
in Smith Sound independent of support from home.
3. That a self-sustaining colony may be estab-
lished at Port Foulke, and be made the basis of an
extended exploration.
4. That the exploration of this entire region is
practicable from Port Foulke-having from that
starting-point pushed my discoveries much beyond

my predecessors, without any second party in the
field to cooperate with me, and under the most
adverse circumstances.
5. That, with a reasonable degree of certainty, it
is shown that, with a strong vessel, Smith Sound may
be navigated and the open sea reached beyond it.
6. I have shown that the open sea exists."
On July 13th, the ship was fairly out, truly afloat
after ten months imprisonment in the ice, and leaving
Smith Sound he proceeded on his course to Whale
Sound which Hayes was desirous of exploring. This
he did thoroughly and then stood southward, mak-
ing land on the morning of August 12th at Horse's
Head, whence after three days of groping through fog
he cast anchor in Upernavik Bay. Here he writes:
While the chain was yet clicking in the hawse-
hole, an old Dane, dressed in seal-skins, and possess-
ing a small stock of English and a large stock of arti-
cles to trade, pulled off to us with an Esquimaux crew,
and, with little ceremony, clambered over the gang-
way, Knorr met him, and, without any ceremony at
all, demanded the news.
Oh! dere's plenty news."
Out with it, man! What is it ? "
Oh! de Sout' States dey go agin de Nort' States,
and dere's plenty fight."
I heard the answer, and, wondering what strange
complication of European politics had kindled another
Continental war, called this Polar Eumaeus to the
quarterdeck. Had he any news from America ?
Oh 't is 'merica me speak De Sout' States, you
see! dey go agin de Nort' States, you see! and
dere 's plenty fight!"
Yes, I did see! but I did not Delieve that he told
the truth, and awaited the letters which I knew must
have come out with the Danish vessel, and which
were immediately sent for to the Government House.
This news appeared incredible and it was not till
the explorers arrived at Halifax that they heard of the
struggle that had been going on for months between
the South and the North. Four days more brought
them to Boston and then Hayes in the face of the
duty which every man owes, in his own person, to his
country when his country is in peril, could not hesi-
tate. Before he had reached my cahin while his
friends were yet in ignorance of his presence in the
bay, he had resolved to postpone the execution of the
task with which he had charged himself; and he
closed as well the cruise as the project, by writing a
letter to the President, asking for immediate employ-
ment in the public service, and offering the schooner
to the government for a gun-boat.

DR. HA YES--86o AND 1869. 8t

Not till 1869 was Dr. Hayes able to resume his
task, and then he set out on the steam yacht Panther
for the Land of Desolation, as he appropriately
names Greenland. The first spot touched at was
Julianshaab, on the arm of the sea, named Licsfiord.
after its discoverer, Lik the Red, in the year 983: On
these fiords the formation of the great glacier system
of the country was examined. His impression of
one of their rivers of ice is thus given: "Picture to
yourself the rapids of Niagara frozen to their very
depths, the falls, the river, the great Lake Erie every-
where converted into ice, you, yourself, erect upon the
rapids, and you will have, on a reduced scale, the sea
of ice that lay before me." The journey across it
was dangerous, especially at first, owing to the
numerous crevasses or cracks of unfathomable depth
which crossed each other in every direction, but, the
border once crossed, the road became easier. On all
sides brooks meandered over the icy plain, often
mingling and plunging downwards in torrents into
some deep chasm as they found their way to the
fiord. When they had again reached the ship, they
were startled by a sharp, formidable explosion, and,
to their wondering gaze, the projecting angle of the

glacier was seen to be breaking up. At the lower end,
a tower nearly two hundred feet high was wholly
separated from it, then, as if the sea-bottom had col-
lapsed beneath it, it sank little by little, and its pinna-
cles disappeared in a whirlpool of foam and vapor.
Continuing her course up Baffin Bay, the Panther
met her first field of ice, a broad white and blue
plain with a narrow pass through it, winding and
curving till a barrier of ice blocked the way. Charge
full steam on it," the captain cried, and the Panther
dashed into the mass, struck it as she quivered from
stem to stern, then paused. She returned a hundred
yards, then, with all steam up, rushed onward, then
falls back, plunges and darts forward till a channel
was opened and an expanse of water was reached.
We need net describe the other incidents of the voy-
age, which was not one of geographical discovery
properly so called. In leaving the harbor of Uper-
navik she had the courage to charge an iceberg. The
men on deck were thrown off their feet, but she fell
back uninjured; six times were these ram-like blows
repeated, and then the mountain of crystal split, and
the two parts struck the sea, as they toppled over
with a sound like thunder.




-THE Germans, at the suggestion of the ancient
geographer, Dr. Petermann, began to take an active
part in Arctic explorations, and, after an unsuccessful
voyage in 1868, an expedition, consisting of two ships
,the Germania and the Hansa, was fitted out and
placed under the command of Captain Koldewey.
On June 15, 1869, the two ships sailed from Bremer-
haven, sighted Jan Magen on July 9th, and on July
19th, owing to a mistake in reading signals, the Hansa
.parted from her consort and sailed westward. Pro-
gress now became difficult, the ship if not beset with
ice was unable to approach the land on account of
the thick, compact floes. On August 25th she was
pear Sabroe Island, only thirty-three miles distant, as
,was learned afterward, from where her sister ship the
Germania was lying, and on September 2d the block-
ade of the ship by ice began. We quote the words
of the German report for the details:
"As late as the 7th of September, the voyagers
still flattered themselves that they might reach the
coast. It was distant only five and thirty miles, and
at noon, in clear weather, its outlines could be clearly
graced. To the west of the ice-fields (the Hansa lay
,ot the east of it) was visible a wide area of open
water, frozen white with foam, which seemed to ex-
Aend quite to the coast. A pedestrian excursion west-
.ward.uponthe ice-plain, following up its southern
boundary, would show us whether the channel on
that side was navigable throughout, and communi-
cated with this open water. Marching through thick
and frozen snow, we reached a huge block of ice,
,Which we christened the Devil's Thumb; from its
summit we could command an extensive prospect.
Seated astride of it .we warmed ourselves with a little
,of the liquor JBade had been thoughtful enough to
bring with him. Two other enormous masses enclos-
ing a narrow and picturesque passage were called the
Brandenburg Gate.
We contrived to escalade one of these masses by
.mounting on one another's shoulders, and then cutting
steps in the ice with a knife. Hildebrandt made a
, ketch of the little scete. Unfortunately the canal

we had seen proved too narrow for the vessel, and
soon the ice in it and on the other side of the field set
firmer together.
On the following days the cold was very keen.
sinking from 23 to 5", and at last, on the 14th of Sep-
tember, the Hansa was completely blocked up by ice
in Lat. 730 25' 7" N., and Long. 18I 39' 5" W. The
southwest drift aided by the wind, which blew con-
tinuously from the north, carried the ship southward
along with the ice ; and in this way we traversed thir-
teen miles from the i2th to the 14th.
On the 9th a great ice-floe closed up the channel
by which the Hansa had entered, and we made it fast
with cables to protect ourselves from the floating
masses. Some days later a north-northwest gale set
the ice again in motion, and broke our hawsers. The
ice accumulated behind the ship raising it a foot and
a half.
"On a neighboring 'field we caught sight of a she
bear and her cub. A boat at once put off in pursuit.
The two animals soon caught sight of us, and began
to trot along the edge of the ice by the side of the
boat-the mother grinding her teeth and licking her
beard. We fired as soon as we could take a steady
aim and the bear fell upon the snow mortally wounded.
We repeatedly cast a noose over the young one, which
continued to lick and caress her mother in the most
affectionate manner; but each time she contrived to
extricate herself, and at last she took to flight, groan-
ing and crying. Though wounded by a musket-ball
she succeeded in effecting her escape.
On the evening of the same day (the 9th of Sep-
tember, 1869), at 10 o'clock, some aurora gleams
appeared in the west shooting towards the south.
Radiant sheaves and phosphorescent bands mounted
towards the zenith ; but the phantasmagoria quickly
vanished. At the same time we heard the young
bear howling dismally on the spot where it had lost
its mother. The fresh bear meat proved most oppor-
tune, and tasted excellent either as a roast joint or in
chops. On the 12th, from the east, as before-leav-
ing the land behind them-came another couple of


bears. The old one met the same fate as the previous
wanderer; the cub was caught and chained to the
ice-anchor. Its alarm was great, but it eagerly
devoured its mother's flesh which we threw to it. We
raised a snow-house for its accommodation, and pro-
vided it with a couch of shavings, which, however,
the young bear, like a true native of the Arctic seas,
treated with contempt, and preferred camping in the
snow. A few days later it disappeared, along with
the chain, which must have become loosened from the
anchor, and, no doubt, the poor creature perished.
The weight of the iron itself was sufficient to
sink it.
"TheHansa was visited by other Arctic guests.
With a brisk wind came a couple of snow-white foxes,
a proof that the ice had formed a continuous bridge
to the shore. With tails high in the air they trotted
or galloped across the ice-fields like small craft sail-
ing before the wind, One of them was shot by Mr.
Hildebrandt, and the next day 'smoked upon the
We thought first of wintering on the ice in the
boats covered in with sails, but this sort of shelter
would not have afforded a satisfactory guarantee for
health and life. How would it defend us against the
wind, the severe cold, the hurricanes of snow, with
which we were certain to be assailed throughout the
winter ? How could we have prepared in it that
warm nourishment which is absolutely indispensable
to existence during an Arctic winter ? We returned
to the idea of constructing a hut upon the ice-field,
and without delay proceeded to build the house of
coal which had already been proposed. Bricks made
with coal are excellent material, because they absorb
the moisture and reflect the warmth back into the
interior. For mortar we used water and snow. For
the roof we agreed to take, in case of a final estab-
lishment on the ice through the loss of the ship, the
covering which protected the deck of the Hansa from
snow. As a preliminary precaution, however, we
turned our attention to the preservation of our boats,
and over these we erected sheds of frozen snow.
On the 8th, after the works necessary for the con-
struction of huts were completed, a storm of snow
arose, which, if of earlier occurrence, would certainly
have rendered them impossible, and in five days both
house and ship were entirely buried. Such piles of
snow were accumulated between the middle of the
deck and the ship's stern, that the sailors could with
difficulty make their way to their cabin. The new ice
which surrounded the Hansa was so loaded with snow
that it yielded under the weight, and fell away from

the sides of the ship, so that the sea-water penetrated
between the ice and the snow.
"On the 13th the storm subsided ; the weather
again became calm and serene, and we found our-
selves fifteen miles northeast of the Liverpool coast,
which appeared like a rocky mountain, with shining
ridges and precipitous walls thickly covered with
snow. But in the valleys and gorges the snow lay in
heavy masses. We could clearly distinguish the north
point, Cape Gladstone, and Reynolds Islands, as well
as a great part of the coast stretching southward
until lost in the misty distance.
From the 5th to the 14th of October the drift had
been very great. In that period we had fallen back,
as it were, seventy-two miles towards the south-south-
We frequently saw flights of crows which seem
to sojourn all the winter on this coast. Once only did
we catch sight of a gull and a falcon. The narwhal
also made known their presence in the ice-covered
channel by their occasional 'blowing.'
On the morning of the 17th three of the crew,
namely, Bowe, the carpenter, and the seamen Btitt-
ner and Heyne, undertook, in the fine weather, to
gain the land, which was only ten miles distant. They
started at seven o'clock, the weather being very calm,
and the temperature at zero. After crossing some
dangerous places in the newly-formed ice, they arrived
at some continuous fields which enabled them to ap-
proach within four miles of the shore. After a three
hours' journey they were constrained to halt, because
a belt of water, about two miles wide, parallel to the
coast and skirting the ice-foot' or shore-ice, which
was nearly of equal breadth, obstructed the route.
About one o'clock, when snow had begun to fall, and
the wind to blow from the north; they regained the
ship; we were growing anxious for their safety, and
welcomed them gladly on their return.
October the I8th.-Three words will describe the
state of the weather-cold, calm, and clear; but
about eight o'clock in the morning the ice began to
drive and press around the ship. At regular intervals
underneath, the ice, like rolling waves, ground and
cracked; now with a sound like the clang of doors,
now like a contention of human voices, and now like
the shrill creak of a drag on the wheel of a locomo-
tive. The obvious immediate cause of the pressure
was that our field had turned in drifting, and had
come into collision with the littoral ice. The two
floes in front of the vessel received the chief momen-
tum, so that for a time the Hansa was safe, though
trembling violently, and though her masts swayed to


and fro, like reeds in a wind. As the field under-
went some long and dangerous fissures, the whale-
boat seemed in danger; and we brought it, therefore,
alongside the ship. Towards evening the weather
cleared, but our presentiment that this day was but a
precursor of evil to come proved on the following day
only too correct. We made our preparations, how-
ever, for either event-that is, for wintering in the
house in case the ship was destroyed ; or for remain-
ing in the ship if she escaped. We completed the
provisioning of the house, especially in bread and
fuel. We collected the fur clothing and carried upon
deck the remaining stores. In removing these we
discovered a numerous colony of rats, which, finding
themselves very well off, had not yet thought it neces-
sary to abandon the vessel. By evening the pressure
had ceased, and the air was calm, though foggy; a
halo formed round the moon, which was then at its
full, and illuminated with a pale and fitful light the
mountains and plains of ice. In the cabin and in the
crew's lodging we amused ourselves by playing at
cards. The catastrophe we feared was preceded on
the morning of the 19th by a hurricane from the north-
northwest, accompanied by a fall of snow, and much
severe pressure from the ice. So thick was the air,
we could not see the coast. The first heavy shock
occurred at ten in the morning, but we felt no particu-
lar alarm until noon, when the constantly approach-
ing and heaped-up masses of ice, about four feet
thick, had broken up on the starboard side of the
vessel, and drove heavily against the outer side. The
stern of the schooner rose slightly, and but for the
high ice blocks would have risen higher; she had to
bear, therefore, the entire pressure. But so far she
was water-tight, as we found on trying the pumps.
Shortly before one o'clock the deck seams amidship
gave way. Then came an interval of quiet during
which we took our midday meal on deck. Between
decks it was very uncomfortable. Before long some
massive blocks of ice forced themselves under the
ship's bow, and, though crushed by it, raised her up,
slowly at first, and then more quickly, until it was
fully seventeen feet out of its former position upon
the ice, We sought to ease this movement as much
as possible by shovelling away the ice and snow from
the larboard side. A strange and awful, yet splendid
spectacle, of which all the crew were witnesses from
the ice, was this upward movement of the ship. With
all due speed, the clothing and nautical instruments,
journals and cards, were landed on the ice. Unfor-
tunately the stern part of the ship would not
rise, and the conviction was, therefore, forced

upon us that the schooner must soon be rent in
"About five o'clock the pressure temporarily ceased,
and the raised ice retreated; so that, in the course of
an hour, the ship, lying on her starboard side, glided
into open water. The hawsers, which had been cast
loose so as not to check her movements, were again
made fast, after which we went to the pumps and
found seventeen inches of water in the hold. All
hands set to work, and about seven o'clock the ship
seemed nearly clear, and we ventured to enjoy our
evening meal.
"Alas! in a quarter of an hour's time the water
had increased to two feet, and, in spite of all our ef-
forts, continued steadily to increase. The position of
the leak could not be ascertained by the most careful
search; no sound of water could anywhere be heard;
and the conclusion was that some part of the ship's
bottom, under the coal, had been stove in. The fate
of the Hansa, at all events, was sealed; the good
ship was sinking! Our emotion was great, but we
endeavored to face the melancholy fact with calmness.
The house of coal on the drifting ice waste was des-
tined to be, throughout the long and dreary Arctic
winter, our sole asylum and, perhaps, our grave! In
such reflections, however, we had no time to indulge.
Our work was steadily prosecuted. By nine in the
evening the snow had ceased to fall; a clear starry
heaven shone above us, and over the dreary ice-desert
spread the calm lustre of a cloudless moon. Ever
and anon the firmament glowed, and the scenery was
lighted up by the ever-changing glories of the aurora.
It was now freezing sharply, with the thermome-
ter at thirteen degrees below zero. One-half of
the men were kept at the pumps; the others,
until midnight, were occupied in removing from the
doomed vessel the most necessary articles. As to
sleep,' says Dr. Buchholz, 'it was not to be thought
of, for the idea of our terrible position whirled through
my brain in the wildest manner. What would be-
come of us when winter really set in, if its approach
were heralded by such bitter cold ? In vain I at-
tempted to think of any means of safety. It was use-
less to dream of reaching land. It might, indeed, be
possible to force our way through great dangers, and
across the fields and floes, to the inhospitable coast;
but, at the utmost, we could provide ourselves with
only a few days' food. Esquimaux settlements, from
Scoresby's experience, were not to be expected, so
that death by hunger seemed not very far distant from
us. We could do nothing, then, but endeavor to save
ourselves in the coal hut on the southward drifting


Ice-field ; and, if it held together, we might hope to
reach a South Greenland Esquimaux settlement in the
spring or (which was somewhat improbable) get
across the icy belt to Iceland.' One serious mishap
attending the pumps was that the water poured out
upon the deck could not run off through the scuppers
because they were filled with ice; therefore, it froze
between the provision chests. The whole after-deck
was soon blocked up with ice; the water pumped up
stood around the pumps, and the men who worked
them stood in tubs to keep themselves dry. We made
holes in the bulwarks to let it escape, but not with
much advantage as, from the intense cold, the water
came out in a semi-congealed condition. At the
same time the ice settled so over the cabin skylight
that the water oozed through its chinks. During the
night our weary and exhausted men gained a few
hours of refreshing sleep; then they all drained
gladly a cup of coffee, and once more set to work.
The catastrophe, however, was close at hand. At
eight in the morning, the men who were busy in the
forepeak getting out the wood came, with dismayed
countenances, to announce that it was already floating
below. Captain Hegemann, when convinced of the
truth of this statement, ordered the pumps to be
unshipped and the vessel, which was visibly sinking,
to be abandoned.
All hands were at once engaged to transport to
the ice the various articles of utility collected on the
deck-bedding, clothing, provisions, and fuel. In
silence were all the heavy chests and barrels lifted
over the hatchway. First the cook's heavy iron gal-
ley, then two staves were happily saved; these
insured us a supply of warm nourishment, an endura-
ble (if not a genial) temperature in our coal-hut, and
some other advantages during our winter captivity.
For fear of falling short of fuel, we laid our hands
upon every loose piece of wood. Meantime the
vessel was rapidly settling down; but we succeeded,
nevertheless, in saving some objects which were incal-
culably precious in our situation; a small medicine-
chest, our lamps, books, cigars, boxes of games, and
the like. But our work was far from ended. There,
on the ice, everything lay in a heterogeneous heap. It
was a complete chaos, in the midst of which some
shivering rats struggled for life. For greater security
we removed the whole baggage thirty yards farther
across a crevasse. We had also to deal promptly
with one of the seamen, Max Schmidt, who was ill
with fever; we wrapped him up in furs, and carried
him on a plank to the coal-hut.
"At nine in the evening we were all gathered

together in our new asylum, which, feebly lighted by
a lamp, resembled a capacious vault. Satisfied with
the labors of the day, though anxious about the future,
we prepared our beds. Planks were laid upon the
ground, and covered with sail-cloth; then each of us
wrapped himself in his furs, and took his rest. One
man remained on guard to keep watch over the stove,
which constantly raised the temperature of our cham-
ber from 2 to 27Y F. Our couch was exceedingly
hard and decidedly cold; but we were so exhausted
and weary that we quickly fell asleep.
In the morning we hastened to the ship to see
what more could be saved. But the coal-hole was
already under water. We cut down the masts, and,
with their rigging, dragged them over the ice; a task
which occupied us the whole day. The mizzen fell at
eleven o'clock ; at three, it was the turn of the main-
mast; and the Hansa presented the appearance of a
miserable wreck.
For the last time the captain and steersman went
on deck, and about six o'clock loosed the cables, which,
by means of the anchor, still moored the ship to our
ice-floe, for there was reason to fear lest the latter,
which bore nearly all the treasure we had saved with
so much difficulty might break up when the ship sank.
The poor battered carcass of the Hansa disap-
peared in the night of the 21st, in Lat. 70' 52' N. and
Long. 21' W., about a German mile and a half from
the Liverpool coast. We could distinctly trace its
cliffs and mountains, which, according to Dr. Laube,
closely resembled the chalk-hills of Munich; we
could distinguish Glasgow Island and Holloway Bay;
but there was no means of opening a road across the
labyrinth of floating ice. The largest of our three
boats was lying loose on the deck of the Hansa, when
she went down, and accordingly floated. The weather
being very favorable we were able to haul up on the
ice, near the hut, this third hope of safety.
"The following days were occupied in making our-
selves as comfortable as possible in our black-looking
hut. Owing to the comparatively high temperature
in its interior, the sail-cloth roof permitted the water
to trickle through the snow which covered it, so that
we passed a very bad night. We remedied this in-
convenience by substituting a roof of planks, covered
with sails. To provide for light and ventilation, we
inserted a couple of windows in the roof ; but, in spite
of this provision, were unable to dispense with the
lamp the greater part of the day. Along the entire
length of both sides of the room, we raised a tier of
boards about six inches above the ground, and laid
our matresses upon it. To prevent the pillows from


freezing to the wall, we lined it, where necessary, with
double planking. The cooking stove was placed be-
hind; the smaller one in front. Along the walls,
which were hung with sail-cloth, shelves were placed,
and on these we disposed our books, instruments, and
cooking utensils. The ship's chests, planted in front
of the bed-floor, served for table and seats. The
gilded looking-glass from our old cabin adorned and
brightened the interior of our new one; underneath it
hung a splendid barometer; and the ticking of the
clock cheered us with its accustomed sound. By all
these little arrangements, our residence in the coal-
hut was rendered comparatively endurable. A good
night's sleep recruited our weary frames; and,
thanks to our capital preserved meats, we gained
fresh strength from the marvellous soups and stews
prepared by our cook.
We were no longer threatened by any imminent
danger, so our melancholy gave way a little, and it
was even with jests and laughter that we recalled
some of the humorous scenes of the i9th. In the
evening we resumed our whist club, playing on a vol-
ume of the ship's journal, as we had no table. The
greater portion of our supplies of fuel and provisions,
as well as the boats, lay still upon the ice in the neigh-
borhood of the scene of disaster. The work of trans-
porting it was accomplished chiefly by means of the
sledges, and occupied several days. For the time we
piled it all up beside the house. As the layer of snow
outside rose as high as the walls, we dug around the
hut a trench four feet wide, which we covered with an
awning of sail-cloth, increasing the protection it
afforded by a roof of snow. This kind of corridor
furnished a convenient place for stowing away our
provisions, and there we deposited the greater por-
tion. The remainder, which would serve for about
two months, was carefully deposited in the boats.
The small quantity of fuel procured by cutting up the
masts and yards we threw together in a heap. Some-
times the boats were stationed in one place, some-
times in another; we extricated them at intervals
from the snow, and transported them to some more
sheltered locality.
"We put up the ship's hatchway before the
door of the hut, to catch the wind. A man-
rope helped us to descend into our 'fox's hole,'
the roof of which scarcely rose above the level of
the snow.
We had saved the large flag, and on a snow-hill
at the rear of the house we raised the top-gallant
mast as a flagstaff. In fine weather we hoisted the
flag, partly for our amusement and partly in the for-

lorn hope of attracting the attention of any Esqui,
maux settlement on the coast.
At last we succeeded in introducing order into
our chaos. The confused heap of individual belong-
ings was portioned out among its various owners.
The warming arrangement was excellent, for though
the temperature of the external atmosphere had sunk
to 130 F., the thermometer inside the hut marked 70'
30'. Often the fuel necessary for preparing our meals
proved sufficient also for heating purposes; and, in
order to spare the wood, we seldom used the second
stove. The damp was remarkably diminished, for it
escaped easily through the dormer-window, which
also admitted a supply of fresh air.
"Slowly but uninterruptedly our ice-field drifted
southward. We skirted the Liverpool coast as far
Scoresby Sound, sometimes approaching, sometimes
receding from the ice with a uniformity of movement
which was probably due to flux and reflux in that
large deep sound. We could perfectly distinguish
the outline of the coast bristling with rocks, and in
two valleys, lying between abrupt precipitous moun-
tains. We fancied we saw huge glaciers covered with
We often contemplated with melancholy feelings
the spot where the Hansa went down. Now there
was space enough for her between the ice-fields and
the land-ice.
"At the end of October the sun rose at half-past
nine, and about three o'clock sank behind the rocky
coast. In the hut we had but a few hours of daylight
for reading and writing.
"We endeavored, by every possible means, to main-
tain a constant activity. We skated; we made snow
images. The order of the day's proceedings was
always observed to the letter.
The last night-watch woke us at seven. We rose,
dressed ourselves in our woollen clothing, washed in
melted snow, and took our morning's coffee with a
ration of hard bread. Then we betook ourselves to
our various avocations. Some acted as cabinet-
makers and carpenters; some plied the useful needle,
some chopped wood; others kept the daily registers.
If the weather were clear we took our astronomical
observations and recorded all useful and necessary
calculations. At one o'clock, dinner. Strong meat
soup was the fiece de resistance at this meal; and as
we had an abundance of preserved vegetables, our
cook had every opportunity of displaying his fertility
of resource. We were careful to eat but little of salt
meat or bacon. Nor did we venture to indulge in
alcoholic liquors---confining ourselves to one drink of


good port-wine on Sundays. Throughout the winter,
owing to these precautions, our health was good.
We had no case of sickness or of physical discomfort,
except the sailor Schmidt's attack of fever when the
ship went down; and a frost-bitten toe of the sailor
Biittner. We were always on the alert, and dissen-
sion was prevented by the maintenance of a strict
"By degrees we completed a thorough exploration
of our floe. We made short tours, and cut roads in
every direction. We ascertained that it measured
about seven nautical miles in circumference while its
average diameter was two miles. The landscape
surrounding us was dreary from its monotony. It
presented a uniform plain, or field covered with
frozen, glittering snow.
"The term 'field' we may here explain signifies a
vast and continuous floating mass of ice. Smaller
pieces are called 'floes' and still smaller ones
, drifts.' Now the ice-raft, on which, as Dr. Laube
happily remarked, 'we were as the Lord's passen-
gers,' was a solid field, fully forty-five feet thick-five
feet above and forty feet below the water level-com-
posed of drifts and floes frozen into a hard, compact
"By the beginning of January, the accumulated
snow, often eight feet in height, had filled up every
fissure and crevasse in the dreary, far-spreading
plain; so that the eye wandered dissatisfied, without
finding a solitary resting point, over the wearisomely
blank waste of whiteness! When at any distance
from the hut, it lay so deeply embedded in the snow
that we could distinguish nothing but the dark spot
or line of the chimney, the boats, and the flagstaff,
with its fluttering banner-a sign of civilization,
which was duly unfurled after every passing whirl-
wind. Later in the spring, when the process of
liquefaction and disruption had greatly reduced the
size of our raft, it appeared,.owing to the heaped-up
blocks of ice and snow-wall, almost like' animated
blocks of ice.' On examining them more closely,
these 'ramparts' were found to be the pushed-up
walls of small ice-masses to which our field had
been knitted by the frost. At intervals rose mounds
of snow, which the change from thawing weather to
frost had almost converted into glaciers, into a solid
and homogeneous whole.
The western and northwestern borders of our
field were dreary in the extreme. The collision and
almost constant friction of the driving ice floes had
raised up walls ten feet in height, embellished with
snow crystals, which radiated in the sun like innumer-

able diamonds. In the auroral displays at morn and
eve, the white flakes turned to pale green. A beautiful
radiance pervaded the night, for moonlight poured
fully and freely from the unclouded heavens; and so
strong and keen was the reflection from the snow-
mirror, that it was very easy to read the minutest
handwriting, and to discern remote objects.
"Nights such as these, moreover, were always
illuminated by the glories of the aurora borealis. For
example, on the 5th of December it shone with a
splendor so intense as to pale the starlight, and shad-
dows streamed across our monotonous ice-field. The
coast, according to its varying distance, was distin-
guishable as a dark, vague streak, or in all the details
of its rocky configuration."
Amid the solitary scene of sea and ice Christmas
and New Year's Day was kept devoutly, but on Janu-
ary IIth a terrible storm made them fear that their
end had come. For five days they slept in the boats,
while they rebuilt the huts on shore, and then for
dreary week after week the ice-raft drifted onward.
Easter Day, April 17th, was celebrated in Nukarlik
Bay, and May 7th, open water in the direction of land
was seen, and Captain Hegemann resolved to take to
his boats. He distributed his company among the
three boats, and hoisted sail about 4 o'clock P. M. with
loud cheers and hurrahs. We again quote the Ger-
man narrative:
We kept under sail till nine o'clock moving slowly
at first, but more quickly when we got the boats into
trim, so that when we made fast to a floe for the
night we were nearer the shore by seven miles.
We underwent considerable trial in climbing upon
the floe. After having found a convenient place, the
boats were unloaded, and hauled up one by one.
The provisions and fuel of each boat were piled
beside it, and covered with oiled sail-cloth ; then, by
way of a roof, we covered the larger of the two small
boats with the sails of the other, and thus provided
an imperfect defence in case of bad weather.
These arrangements occupied us for some hours.
We supped upon bread and coffee, which the men
prepared in the boats with the spirit of wine lamp.
"It was half an hour past midnight when we
wrapped ourselves in our furs and laid down to rest.
Our sleep was not very long; at half-past five we re-
sumed our voyage.
Steering towards the west, we arrived within four
miles of the shore. But about noon the ice became
so compact that we were again compelled to make
fast to a floe.
Until five in the afternoon we remained ensconced


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