Category Archives: Polar Exploration

Westminster Abbey, Westminster, London, England

Monument in Westminster Abbey, London commemorating Rear Admiral of the Blue, Sir John Franklin RN d. 1847 and Admiral Sir Francis McClintlock RN d. 1907

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Location

Westminster Abbey, Westminster, London, England

Transcript

[Side] 'TO THE MEMORY / OF / SIR JOHN FRANKLIN, / BORN APRIL 16 / 1786 / AT SPILSBY / LINCOLNSHIRE / DIED JUNE 11 / 1847 / OFF POINT VICTORY IN THE FROZEN OCEAN / THE BELOVED CHIEF / OF THE GALLANT CREWS / WHO PERISHED WITH HIM / IN COMPLETING / THE DISCOVERY OF THE / NORTH WEST PASSAGE'
[Front] 'O YE FROST AND COLD, O YE ICE AND SNOW / BLESS YE THE LORD PRAISE HIM AND MAGNIFY HIM FOR EVER.' / 'NOT HERE: THE WHITE NORTH HAS THY BONES; AND THOU, / HEROIC SAILOR-SOUL / ART PASSING ON THY HAPPIER VOYAGE NOW / TOWARD NO EARTHLY POLE'.
[Below] 'HERE ALSO IS COMMEMORATED / ADMIRAL SIR LEOPOLD McCLINTOCK / 1819-1907 / DISCOVERER OF THE FATE OF FRANKLIN / IN 1859'.
[Right side] 'THIS MONUMENT / WAS ERECTED / BY JANE, HIS WIDOW, / WHO AFTER LONG WAITING, / AND SENDING MANY / IN SEARCH OF HIM, / HERSELF DEPARTED / TO SEEK AND FIND HIM / IN THE REALMS OF LIGHT / JULY 18, 1875, / AGED 83 YEARS'

Details

Description: A bust of Franklin within a gothic arch. A relief of ships beset in ice below. At the top, the Franklin crest - a congar eel head head and the motto: 'NISU'.
Type: Monument
Position: Chapel of St John the Evangelist, North transept north aisle
Materials: White marble, alabaster
Date Erected: 1875
Artists: Matthew Noble, George Gilbert Scott

People

Franklin, John
Age: 61
Date of Death: 11/6/1847
Cause of Death: Unknown
Rank / Occupation: Rear Admiral of the Blue
Organisation: Royal Navy
McClintock, Francis Leopold
Age: 88
Date of Death: 1907
Cause of Death: Unknown
Rank / Occupation: Admiral
Organisation: Royal Navy

Extra

Notes: See also West window in St Paul's Church, Whitechapel which shows four maritime scenes from life of Christ. Verse written by Tennyson. Commissioned by Lady Jane Franklin, who specifically wanted a bust rather than the window suggested by Dean Stanley. The canopy was added by Sir George Gilbert Scott. Photograph in P & D box 1386. A small tablet underneath the memorial commemorates Admiral F.L. McClintock. The original plaster model for the bust of Franklin was at the Museum of Science and Engineering, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Bibliography: F. Bond 'Westminster Abbey' (1909) p. 267. Frances J. Woodward 'A portrait of Jane' (London, 1951) p. 362.

St Anne's Church, Woodplumpton, Lancashire, England

Memorial at Woodplumpton to Commander Henry Foster RN d. 1831

Location

St Anne's Church, Woodplumpton, Lancashire, England

Transcript

'SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF / HENRY FOSTER, R.N., F.R.S. / DISTINGUISHED AS WELL FOR SUPERIORITY OF INTELLECT AS URBANITY OF/MANNERS, BY A ZEALOUS AND FIRM DISCHARGE OF DUTY / HE GAINED THE CONFIDENCE AND REGARD OF HIS OF HIS BROTHER OFFICERS / AND BY A SUCCESSFUL PURSUIT OF KNOWLEDGE / ATTRACTED THE NOTICE OF MEN OF SCIENCE / FOR HIS PHILOSOPHICAL EXPERIMENTS MADE IN THE ARCTIC REGIONS / THE COPLEY MEDAL OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY / WAS PRESENTED TO HIM ON 30TH NOVEMBER, 1827, / WHEN THE LORD HIGH ADMIRAL OF ENGLAND WITH AN ALACRITY / HONOURABLE TO HIMSELF AND TO THE SUBJECT OF HIS PATRONAGE / INSTANTLY PROMOTED HIM TO THE RANK OF COMMANDER. / IN THE YEAR FOLLOWING HE SAILED ON A VOYAGE OF SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH. / HE HAD COMPLETED HIS ASTRONOMICAL OBSERVATIONS AT PANAMA, / AND ALL THINGS HAD PROSPERED IN HIS HAND; WHEN, PROCEEDING TO/HIS SHIP AND ANTICIPATING A SPEEDY RETURN TO HIS NATIVE SHORE, HE / FELL FROM A CANOE AND IN A MOMENT WAS LOST TO HIS COUNTRY / AND HIS FRIENDS. / HIS BODY SHROUDED IN THE BRITISH FLAG WAS INTERRED NEAR THE FATAL / SPOT ON THE BANK OF THE RIVER CHAGRE IN THE GULPH [sic] OF MEXICO / ON THE 8TH FEBRUARY, 1831, AND IN THE 34TH YEAR OF HIS AGE / THIS MONUMENT IS ERECTED BY SEVERAL OF HIS COMPANIONS AND FRIENDS / AS A MEMORIAL OF THE HIGH ESTEEM THEY ENTERTAINED FOR HIS / CHARACTER, AND OF THE DEEP REGARD THEY FELT FOR HIS / UNTIMELY DEATH. / HE WAS THE SON OF THE REV. HENRY FOSTER, / INCUMBENT OF THIS CHAPELRY.' [ON BASE] 'IN MEMORY / OF THE REVEREND / HENRY FOSTER LATE INCUMBENT / OF THIS CHAPELRY UPWARDS OF 33 YEARS / DIED AUGUST 7TH 1844 AGED 84 YEARS'

Details

Description: A mourning seaman leaning on a pillar inscribed 'FOSTER' surmounted an urn and flanked by an anchor, flag and navigational instruments.
Type: Wall monument
Materials: Marble

People

Foster, Henry
Age: 34
Date of Death: 2/1831
Cause of Death: Maritime accident
Rank / Occupation: Commander RN
Organisation: Royal Navy

Extra

Notes: DOSSIER.
Bibliography: Editors: Ann Savours and Anita McConnell 'Journal Kept by Midshipman Joseph Henry Kay during the Voyage of HMS Chanticleer, 1828-1831', 'Four Travel Journals: The Americas, Antarctica and Africa, 1775-1874.' (The Hakluyt Society, 2007) p.266.

St Giles's Church, Chideock, Dorset, England

Gravestone at St Giles’s Church, Chideock, Dorset, commemorating William Brett d. 1878

Location

St Giles's Church, Chideock, Dorset, England

Transcript

'In affectionate remembrance of William Brett who died May 9 1878 Aged 54'

Details

Type: Gravestone
Position: East End of churchyard
Vessel: HMS Investigator

Event

Crimea War

Event Date

1853-1856

Event Category

19th century conflicts in Asia

People

Brett, William
Age: 54
Date of Death: 9/5/1878
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation:
Organisation: Royal Navy

Extra

Notes: Arthur Mee's 'Dorset' says he was captured by the press gang when a lad in Ireland, fought in the Crimea, was on one of the Franklin Search expeditions, saved many lives from drowning and Queen Victoria presenting him with his 6th medal said 'I am proud of you'. Captain of the Foretop, HMS Investigator 1848-49 (Sir James Clark Ross, search expedition in 'Enterprise' and 'Investigator').
Bibliography: Arthur Mee, 'Dorset', Hodder & Stoughton, 1947
Recorder: David Sauners, 1991

Church of St Ethelburga the Virgin, Bishopsgate, London, England

Window formerly in the Church of St Ethelburga the Virgin, Bishopsgate dedicated to Henry Hudson d. 1611

Location

Church of St Ethelburga the Virgin, Bishopsgate, London, England

Details

Description: Window depicts Hudson standing in front of his ship.
Type: Window

People

Hudson, Henry
Age:
Date of Death: 1611
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation:
Organisation:

Extra

Notes: Funded by Hudson Bay Company. Destroyed by IRA bomb on 24 April 1993. Hudson took communion at St Ethelburga's on 19 April, 1607 before embarking on his first North West Passage voyage.
Bibliography: 'The Beaver' vol. 81, no. 2, p.4.

Church of St Mary the Virgin, Aldingbourne, West Sussex, England

Memorial window in the Church of St Mary the Virgin, Aldingbourne, West Sussex commemorating Vice-Admiral Sir Reginald William Skelton d. 1956

Location

Church of St Mary the Virgin, Aldingbourne, West Sussex, England

Transcript

'TO THE HONOURED MEMORY / OF ENGINEER VICE ADMIRAL / SIR REGINALD WM. SKELTON K.C.B, / C.B.E., D.S.O.,WHO DIED 6TH SEPT. 1956. / The gift of his three children'

Details

Description: The window depicts an angel holding a globe showing Antarctica, a penguin and a submarine.
Type: Windows
Position: South aisle,chapel south wall
Artists: Christopher Webb

People

Skelton, Reginald William.
Age:
Date of Death: 6/9/1956
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Engineer Vice-Admiral
Organisation: Royal Navy

Extra

Notes: DOSSIER. Engineer Vice-Admiral. Member of Scott expedition to Antarctic 1901. Submarine commander.

Cenotaph, Beechey Island, Nunavut, Canada, Rest of the World

Cenotaph at Beechey Island, Nunavut, Canada commemorating Captain Sir John Franklin, Captain Francis Crozier, Commander James Fitzjames, RN and the officers and crew of HMS Erebus and HMS Fox who died in polar exploration c. 1845

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Location

Cenotaph, Beechey Island, Nunavut, Canada, Rest of the World

Transcript

'TO THE MEMORY OF / FRANKLIN / CROZIER, FITZJAMES / AND / ALL THEIR GALLANT BROTHER / OFFICERS AND FAITHFUL COMPANIONS / WHO HAVE SUFFERED AND PERISHED / IN THE CAUSE OF SCIENCE AND / THE SERVICE OF THEIR COUNTRY / THIS TABLET / IS ERECTED NEAR THE SPOT WHERE / THEY PASSED THEIR FIRST ARCTIC / WINTER AND WHENCE THEY ISSUED FORTH TO CONQUER DIFFICULTIES OR / TO DIE / IT COMMEMORATES THE GRIEF OF THEIR / ADMIRING COUNTRYMEN AND FRIENDS, / AND THE ANGUISH, SUBDUED BY FAITH / OF HER, WHO HAS LOST IN THE HEROIC / LEADER OF THE EXPEDITION, THE MOST / DEVOTED AND AFFECTIONATE OF HUSBANDS / 'And so HE bringeth them unto the / Haven where they would be’ / 1855 / THIS STONE HAS BEEN ENTRUSTED TO / AND IS AFFIXED IN ITS PLACE BY THE / OFFICERS AND CREW; OF THE AMERICAN / EXPEDITION COMMANDED BY / LT. HARTSTENE IN SEARCH OF / DR KANE AND HIS COMPANIONS' [brass plate] 'This tablet having been left at Disco / by the American Expedition which was unable to reach Beechey Island in / 1855, was put on board Discovery / yacht FOX, and is now set up here / by Captain McClintock RN commanding / the final Expedition in search for / ascertaining the fate of Sir John / Franklin and his companions 1858'

Details

Description: Plain white marble slab with ogee edging.
Type: Plaque
Materials: Marble
Date Erected: 1858
Vessel: HMS Erebus, HMS Fox

Extra

Bibliography: McClintock's journal MCL/18 15 August 1858

Old Mortlake Cemetery, London, England

Memorial in Old Mortlake Cemetery, London commemorating Admiral Sir Erasmus Ommanney d. 1904

Location

Old Mortlake Cemetery, London, England

Transcript

[Not exact] 'Francis Ommanney and Julia Henrietta his wife. Monument erected by their sons F.M. E.P. M.F. and A.R. Ommaney 1899. Admiral Sir Erasmus Ommanney K.C.B., F.R.S., F.R.C.S. 22 May 1814-21 Dec 1904 and Mary his widow died 1 Sept 1906 aged 91.'

Details

People

Ommanney, Erasmus
Age:
Date of Death: 21/12/1904
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Admiral
Organisation: Royal Navy

Extra

Notes: Served on the Arctic expedition of 1838 and in 1850 the search expedition which discovered the first winter quarters of Franklin's missing ships.
Bibliography: Hugh Meller 'London cemeteries: an illustrated guide and gazeteer' (Amersham, 1981) p. 229.

Harbour Drive, Cardiff Bay, Cardiff, Wales

Memorial at Cardiff Bay commemorating Captain Robert Falcon Scott and his companions d. 1912

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Location

Harbour Drive, Cardiff Bay, Cardiff, Wales

Transcript

'THE "ANTARCTIC 100" MEMORIAL / Unveiled on 6th June 2003 / By Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal / On the 15th June 1910, the British Antarctic Expedition led by Captain Robert Falcon Scott, CVO RN made its Final departure from United / Kingdom Shores. This memorial overlooks the old outer lock gates / at Roath Basin, the point from which Scott's expedition ship the "Terra / Nova" sailed from Cardiff to the cheers of vast crowds of well wishers. / Prior to the departure, Scott had launched a national appeal for funds / and the money donated by the City of Cardiff and South Wales / exceeded that contributed by any other city in the UK. It was in / recognition of this generosity that Scott designated the city as the / home port of the "Terra Nova". She was to return to Cardiff three / years later to a nation in mourning for one of its heroes. / The expedition ended tragically and created one of the great legends / of the twentieth century. Scott's supreme achievement was that he / touched the imagination of his country as no other man had done / and possibly has done since. With his dying message, eloquently / told in his diaries and hand written in desperate circumstances he / challenged whatever was finest in the British temperament. / "the causes of this disaster ware not due to faulty organisation but to / misfortune in all risks that had to be undertaken... / Had we lived, I should have a tale to tell of the hardihood, endurance / and courage of my compatriots which would have stirred the heart / of every Englishman. / These rough notes and our dead bodies must tell the tale."

Details

Description: Iceberg-shaped, incorporating the bows of the 'Terra Nova' with the striving faces of the five members of Scott's 1910 expedition who died on the return journey from the South Pole.
Type: Memorial
Materials: Resin, Mosaic
Date Erected: 2003
Artists: Jonathan Williams

People

Bowers, Henry Robertson
Age:
Date of Death: 3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Lieutenant RIM
Organisation: Royal Indian Marine
Evans, Edward
Age:
Date of Death: 17/2/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Petty Officer RN
Organisation: Royal Navy
Oates, Lawrence Edward Grace
Age:
Date of Death: 17/3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Captain
Organisation: British Army
Scott, Robert Falcon
Age:
Date of Death: 3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Captain RN
Organisation: Royal Navy
Wilson, Edward Adrian
Age:
Date of Death: 3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation:
Organisation:

Extra

Notes: Two bronze plates on the base. The first inscribed as above. The second lists all the members of the expedition.

Roath Park Lake, Cardiff, Wales

Memorial at Roath Park Lake, Cardiff commemorating Captain Robert Falcon Scott RN and his companions d. 1912

Location

Roath Park Lake, Cardiff, Wales

Transcript

'TO THE MEMORY OF / CAPTAIN R.F. SCOTT C.V.O., D.S.O., R.N. / AND HIS FAITHFUL COMPANIONS / CAPTAIN L.E.G. OATES. LIEUT. H.R. BOWERS R.I.M. / WHO SAILED IN THE S.S. TERRA NOVA FROM THE PORT OF CARDIFF / JUNE 15TH 1910, TO LOCATE THE SOUTH POLE; AND IN PURSUIT OF / THAT GREAT AND SUCCESSFUL SCIENTIFIC TASK, LAID DOWN THEIR / LIVES IN THE ANTARCTIC REGIONS, MARCH 1912 / BRITONS ALL, AND VERY GALLANT GENTLEMEN / ERECTED AND PRESENTED TO THE CITY OF CARDIFF BY / F.C. BOWRING ESQ., J.P. / 1915"

Details

Description: Tower in the shape of a lighthouse.
Type: Clock tower
Date Erected: 1915
Vessel: SS Terra Nova

People

Bowers, Henry Robertson
Age:
Date of Death: 3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Lieutenant RIM
Organisation: Royal Indian Marine
Evans, Edward
Age:
Date of Death: 17/2/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Petty Officer RN
Organisation: Royal Navy
Oates, Lawrence Edward Grace
Age:
Date of Death: 17/3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Captain, British Army
Organisation: British Army
Scott, Robert Falcon
Age: 43
Date of Death: 3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Captain RN
Organisation: Royal Navy
Wilson, Edward Adrian
Age:
Date of Death: 3/1912
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation:
Organisation:

Extra

Bibliography: Anthony M. Johnson 'Scott of the Antarctic and Cardiff' (Cardiff, 1984) pp. 54-5.

St Bartholomew's Church, Orford, Suffolk, England

Memorial at St Bartholomew’s Church, Orford, Suffolk commemorating John Green, d. 1892

Location

St Bartholomew's Church, Orford, Suffolk, England

Transcript

‘IN / MEMORY OF / JOHN GREEN / (OF THIS TOWN) / BORN MARCH 21, 1797 / DIED FEBRUARY 12, 1892 / ONE OF THE CREW OF THE HECLA / UNDER CAPTAIN PARRY IN 1820 / THE LAST SURVIVOR OF THIS / ARCTIC EXPEDITION'

Details

Description: Carved with rocks and a ship in full sail
Type: Gravestone
Position: Churchyard
Materials: Stone (possibly Portland stone)
Vessel: Hecla

Event

Northwest Passage expedition 1819

People

Green, John
Age: 95
Date of Death: 12/2/1892
Cause of Death: Unknown
Rank / Occupation: Unknown
Organisation: Royal Navy

Extra

Notes: Rear Admiral Sir William Edward Parry’s quest for the Northwest Passage was one of the most successful.