Antarctic Exploration Highlights

Date People Involved Countries Represented Event or Notable Happenings
February 1899 Carsten Borchgrevink and crew of the Southern Cross Norway Built huts and became the first to winter over on the continent
Between 1907-1909 Ernest Shackleton Ireland Led Nimrod expedition to the South Pole. Failed (by 180 km) to reach the geographic South Pole. This team became the first to reach the magnetic South Pole and cross the Trans-Antarctic mountain range.
1907 Douglas Mawson England Mawson joined the British Antarctic Expedition led by Shackleton as a geologist. With fellow geologist, Edgeworth David, he was on the first ascent of Mount Erebus, the southernmost active volcano on Earth. He was also part of the team to reach the Magnetic South Pole first.
Between 1910-1912 Roald Amundsen Norway Led the first successful Antarctic expedition to reach the South Pole
1912 Robert Falcon Scott England He and his men were second in the race to reach the South Pole. They were beat by one month by Amundsen's group. Unfortunately, Scott and his men perished on their return trip from the South Pole. Because of this, Scott became one of the most famous, and tragic, heroes of the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration.
Between 1914-1916 Ernest Shackleton Ireland Led famous Endurance expedition intending to cross Antarctica from the Weddell Sea south of the Atlantic, to the Ross Sea south of the Pacific, by way of the Pole. Ice closed in on the ship. Shackleton and five other men managed to cross 800 miles of treacherous seas in a small boat and reach the whaling station on South Georgia island, from where Shackleton organized a rescue operation to bring home the remaining men.
Between 1914-1916 Frank Worsley New Zealand Was with Shackleton and four other men while crossing 800 miles of treacherous seas in a small boat. He is credited with the feat of navigating the tiny boat through waters with 50-foot waves with a sextant and getting the boat to its destination of South Georgia Island.
1922 Apsley Cherry-Garrard England He wrote the book "Worst Journey in the World" which is a memoir of the 1910-1913 British expedition led by Scott to Antarctica. The book has become a classic and is praised for its frank observations of the difficulties faced by the expedition and the causes of its disastrous outcomes. Cherry-Garrard was a member of the expedition.
November 29, 1929 Richard Byrd United States He and three other men flew the Floyd Bennett airplane to the South Pole and back in 18 hours, 41 minutes. This was the first flight to the South Pole.
November 1935 Lincoln Ellsworth USA First to successfully fly across Antarctica
Last modified June 28, 2007 by Jennifer Bergman.

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