Its mission would be to explore and collect data on King George V Land and Adelie Land, two portions of Antarctica about which very little was then known. There was no way of knowing whether his other expedition teammates had given him up for lost, and left with the ship Aurora that was scheduled to carry them back to Australia. Using a knotted fishing line, he sounded the depth to the ice ledge and found it to be 150 feet—too far to climb down to. The Quitter Without a miracle, Mawson would soon be joining him in death. This is a picture of him and two other explorers at what they thought was the Magnetic South Pole during one Antarctic expedition. The pain was agonizing, and though Mertz bathed his leader’s eyes with a solution of zinc sulphate and cocaine, the pair had to slow down. He dies peacefully at about 2am in the morning of 8th. On the evening of December 13, 1912, the three explorers pitched camp in the middle of yet another glacier. Keep up-to-date on: © 2021 Smithsonian Magazine. When he was about 28 miles from the hut, he discovered a stash of food and a note left by his comrades, who had placed it there in case he returned. Robert Scott invited him on the famed Terra Nova expedition, but Mawson declined, and planned his own expedition instead. Scott, Shackleton and Mawson were the three great explorers of the Edwardian age. Children don’t walk to school because its too dangerous. Right. I’m no kid and I never heard about him either. I talked about it on the forum. “Where could it have come from?” Mertz scribbled in his notebook. A shore party had been left to wait for him, but it was too late for the ship to turn, and Mawson found himself forced to spend a second winter in Antarctica. Marxism, cultural or otherwise seeks to hammer everyone down to a lowest common denominator. These he lashed to his feet. This was the closest he ever came to utter despair. Five men set up a base at Macquarie Island, while the remainder sailed on the Antarctic continent to establish two bases: the Main Base at Commonwealth Bay led by Mawson, and the Western Base at Queen Mary Land led by Frank Wild. Still carrying the weight of civilization. Now Beau Riffenburgh tells the forgotten story of Douglas Mawson and his death-defying expedition of 1911-14. Thus a tasty soup was prepared as well as a supply of edible meat in which the muscular tissue and the gristle were reduced to the consistency of a jelly. wind at base camp to hack out ice for cooking. Words by Tristan Kennedy | Photos Courtesy of Tim Jarvis. Account & Lists Account Returns & Orders. But to fight and to fight when hope’s out of sight — About 80 miles from the hut, he was now walking, stumbling, and crawling through the freezing crevasse-laced landscape. Below the ledge, the walls of the crevasse plunged down into darkness. Sorting out your differences with a fellow student “like a man” gets you expelled and arrested. Mawson concluded that his companion’s fatal error had been to run beside his sledge rather than stand astride its runners, as he had done. “The nose and lips break open,” he wrote, and his groin was “getting in a painfully raw condition due to reduced condition, dampness and friction in walking.” The explorer would admit later that he felt “utterly overwhelmed by an urge to give in.” Only determination to survive for Paquita, and to give an account of his two dead friends, drove him on. He nursed Mertz the best he could, even helping him attend to his most intimate bodily functions and then cleaning him afterwards. His work has been reviewed at Taki's Magazine. They did not know who he was at first. Next day dawned sunny and warm by Antarctic standards, just 11 degrees below freezing. The chance looked very small as the rope had sawed into the overhanging lid, my finger ends all damaged, myself weak. Today’s young men wore knee pads and crash helmets to ride their kick scooters. One particular reason that is getting overlooked is simply that technology of these days makes exploration a lot easier than than 100 years ago. Only when the storm dropped on February 8 did he find his way to base at last–just in time to see the expedition’s ship, Aurora, leaving for Australia. Some of his progress was made on his hands and knees. It was the greatest single feat in the history of polar exploration. The quantity of his food supply had dwindled to just a few miserable handfuls. Douglas Mawson was … There were so many snow drifts and ice sheets that he could make little progress on some days. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the Antarctic continent was still largely unexplored. “The sound was like the distant thunder of cannon.”. A key member of Ernest Shackleton's famous Nimrod Expedition, Mawson led his own Australasian Antarctic Expedition. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2487023/Hero-Antarctic-explorer-Douglas-Mawson-starved-friend-death-new-book-claims.html, The greatest polar expedition in history is the flight Admiral Byrd took inside the north pole in 1947. A granddaughter of Sir Douglas Mawson has died at her home in Berlin, Germany. Sophisticated cold-weather and mountaineering equipment would not be invented for decades; the only protection was for the men was to tether their bodies to the sledges and hope that a crevasse fall would not pull everything down together with it. It’s the keeping-on-living that’s hard. Even today, with advanced foods, and radios, and insulated clothing, a journey on foot across Antarctica is one of the harshest tests a human being can be asked to endure. Despite Douglas Mawson's copious innovations and achievements in leading the original … In 1912, when he set sail across the Southern Ocean, Mawson was 30 years old and already acclaimed as one of the best geologists of his generation. The men had to harness themselves to the sled to continue. He could sense. Death and tragedy are familiar experiences for explorers. The story of the survival of one of the climbers after he falls into a crevasse and then incredibly manages to descent the mountain with a broken food is amazing and horrifying at the same time. Luckily Mawson—ever the meticulous planner–had taken the precaution of knotting the rope at regular intervals for just such an eventuality.  This fact now saved his life. The evidence is overwhelming and incontrovertible once you start to look. Rolling away from the lip of the crevasse, he fainted. Mawson took his diary and a photograph of his fiancée, an upper-class Australian woman named Francisca Delprait, but known to all as Paquita. All broken and battered and scarred, You wont run into such men in Western cities or sitting in cubicles. Rhymes of a Rolling Stones. Mawson and Mertz read the burial service at the lip of the void and paused to take stock. For navigation the men possessed only a battered theodolite. He had had no assistance, little food and shelter, and only the most rudimentary equipment and navigational tools. Edinburgh: Birlinn, 2000. Crawling forward on his stomach and peering into the void, Mawson dimly made out a narrow ledge far below him. There are men of this caliber up there right now. And of course, we have them fancy cameras for whern it -is- time to take that selfie. The expedition landed in Antarctica in early 1912 and proceeded to set up its main base on Commonwealth Bay. Photo: Wikicommons. To cock your revolver and . Then the explorers found one husky, which had been pregnant, devouring her own puppies. Find great deals for Racing with Death: Douglas Mawson - Antarctic ... by Riffenburgh, Beau Paperback. A key member of Ernest Shackleton's famous Nimrod Expedition, Mawson led his … The Douglas Mawson Antarctic Expedition of 1912 is one of the most amazing feats of physical and mental endurance of all time. These days a person in that situation would tweet about it while dangling from the rope and start a hashtag campaign against misogyny and racism claiming that the crevasses are a product of patriarchy and anybody not commiserating with it is a racistsbigothomophobe who sides with the unfair status quo of the Antarctic. Yet he refused to abandon his companion. Nennis chose a volume of Thackeray, Mertz a collection of Sherlock Holmes short stories. Three times Ninnis almost plunged into concealed cracks in the ice. In comparison with Mawson can we call ourselves men or just toys of destiny? But he refused to lie down and die. Mertz began to fail. But then, while twisting in the emptiness of the black void, some lines of poetry came to his mind. I didn’t know a thing about Mawson until today. With a jerk that all but snapped his fragile body clean in two, Mawson found himself dangling 14 feet down above an apparently bottomless pit, spinning slowly on his fraying rope. He touched everyone's heart and lives by bringing everyone together with his generosity. Go to the frontier. Now a series of near-disasters made the men begin to feel that their luck must be running out. Unfortunately men like that are backbenchers in Washington, the media, Hollywood and in the offices of academia. Ninnis’s close friend Xavier Mertz, was a 28-year-old Swiss lawyer whose chief qualifications for the trek were his idiosyncratic English—a source of great amusement to the other two—his constant high spirits, and his standing as a champion cross-country skier. Where are they? SEND FLOWERS Add a Memory Share Obituary I’m hoping that after what might be called “The Mad Max Era” that occurs (with any luck) in our lifetimes, some long lost library will be dug up (probably in the midwest) and such books will be found but the kind of people who would want to bury them again would have been sloughed out of the human race by that time. Mawson plunged through the … “The snow masses must have been collapsing their arches,” he wrote. The social justice warriors and the fruits and other brain damaged people should not be allowed to control knowledge. Departing from Commonwealth Bay on November 10, 1912, they traveled 300 miles by December 13. A hundred years ago, it was worse. Mawson’s plan was to split his expedition into four groups, one to man base camp and the other three to head into the interior to do scientific work. Know that guy who made the flying jet powered set of wings and goes whizzing through Austria? There now ensued a grim battle for survival which has no equal in the annals of exploration. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgJDm5g1QPc (the comments are disabled so you *know* it’s legit). How could he do it again? In order to ignore the pest, when I detect ‘white privilege’ being mentioned in someone’s post on tumblr, I exit the page, they’re incredibly toxic. I had time to say to myself, ‘So this is the end,’ expecting every moment the sledge to crash on my head and both of us to go to the bottom unseen below. It took Mawson hours to clean him up and put him back inside his bag to warm up, and then, he added, just a few minutes later, “I him in a kind of fit.” They began moving again, and Mertz took some cocoa and beef tea, but the fits got worse and he fell into a delirium. See, feminists wouldn’t dare to complain about a non-white male eve if he were to evil, but they bash and mock whites as if they’re enemy. Now Beau Riffenburgh tells the forgotten story of Douglas Mawson and his death-defying expedition of 1911-14. Just draw on your grit, it’s so easy to quit. For the first few days they made good time, but soon Mawson went snow-blind. I appreciate it. London: Unwin Hyman, 1988; Douglas Mawson. There used to be explorers, conquerors and emperors who would sacrifice everything including their lifes to protect or do greater things. They’re still out there. Their situation was clearly desperate. But the rope held. Only one of the dogs was strong enough to haul, and he was slowly wasting away from starvation and exposure. In time, he would come to view this as a blessing; he needed the gentle pace of life, and the solicitude of his companions, to recover from his trek. Douglas Ian Mawson. May God help us.”. The Ghost Disease and Twelve Other Stories of Detective Work in the Medical Field. Starvation, physical dysfunction, and despair had taken hold, and he was unable to maintain a steady pace. “You’re sick of the game!” Well, now that’s a shame. If a white woman were to say today: ‘I only date white men, my preference’..she would be called out..actually not even, if she were to state ‘Nothing against other races, but I prefer white men’ she would still get hate from sjw and feminists, they’re that extreme and intolerant. “These days a person in that situation would tweet about it while dangling from the rope and start a hashtag campaign against misogyny and racism claiming that the crevasses are a product of patriarchy and..”. Before Smithsonian.com, Dash authored the award-winning blog A Blast From the Past. It proved to mark a note and a store of food left by his worried companions at base camp. Now, if he were to fall again, getting out of a crevasse ought to be easier. On 10 November 1912, Douglas Mawson, Belgrave Ninnis and Xavier Mertz began their ‘Far East Sledging Journey’, using two dog teams to explore the coast to the distant east. I guess someone will write a hit piece on pretty much anyone. The theory was put to the test the following day, when the ladder saved him from another dark plummet into ice. There is a well-spring of victory and an indomitable spirit in the depths of every man; sometimes hanging off of a glacier whilst our skin peels off in the cold is the kick-start we need, and the suffocation of vapid routine is truly more effective at stifling the spirit. Eventually, giving up, they pondered the mystery of why Ninnis had plunged into a crevasse that the others had crossed safely. His odyssey had covered 310 bitter miles. He himself was a meticulous and exhaustive planner, unwilling to leave even the slightest details to chance. They were nearly 310 miles from the main base, with almost no food and nothing substantial to use as shelter. Thank you for this work. Worst of all, extremes of cold pervaded everything; Apsley Cherry-Garrard, who sailed with Captain Scott’s doomed South Pole expedition of 1910-13, recalled that his teeth, “the nerves of which had been killed, split to pieces” and fell victim to temperatures that plunged as low as -77 degrees Fahrenheit. Mawson collapsed in their arms, and his ordeal was over. In November 1912, the Far Ea… While crossing the Ninnis Glacier about 500 kilometers from the main base, Mawson’s party was stricken with calamity. You have free computer programs that will show you an overhead of coordinates anywhere on the globe. As he approached Commonwealth Bay, Mawson made out a black speck in the distance. Robert W. Service. And self-dissolution is barred. Learn about the challenges faced by Douglas Mawson while conducting the Australasian Antarctic Expedition. Douglas Mawson's first encounter with the south polar ice was with Shackleton's Nimrod expedition in 1907-09, when with Edgeworth David and Mackay, he trekked to the south magnetic pole. Douglas Mawson as expedition commander. The steamship Aurora, which rescued Mawson and his companions from the bleak confines of their base camp. Thanks for the read. Thanks for sharing this. Because our Western Ideals, exploration among them, have been systematically deconstructed by the Marxist who have taken over our schools. Give a Gift. Hello, Sign in. . They exist still. #yolo. Mertz, Mawson wrote in his diary on January 5, 1913, “is generally in a very bad condition… skin coming off legs, etc.” Despite his leader’s desperation to keep moving, Mertz insisted that a day’s rest might revive him, and the pair spent 24 hours huddled in their sleeping bags. Douglas was smart, well educated, very Caring, Loving, a Gentle Soul and a Kind Man to Everyone. 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