Okay, I’m going to try this – today’s Blogging 101 assignment is to do an event – and one of the highlighted ones was blogging about reading around the world – an author from each of the 6 continents, Antarctica excepted, except – though I realize the author’s not “from” there, still I just happen to have the book Antarctica: Journeys to the South Pole by Walter Dean Myers so….
it tells the stories of those explorers to the South Pole from James Cook, the first to cross the Antarctic Circle, to William Smith, the first person to actually see the land, although he wasn’t believed, then James Clark Ross, who saw even more land, as well as a 200ft. vertical ice shelf. Then came Charles Wilkes, who first declared Antarctica a continent. Now we have the first explorations in what is considered the modern age, using steam ships, so no longer reliant on just the wind, one by a Norwegian, funded by a publisher, who, of course, wanted publishing rights to the stories, and the other, a Belgian expedition, both of which spent the winter, the Norwegian, voluntarily, the Belgian by default since they ended up getting stuck in the ice. But they both survived.
Next we have the beginnings of the explorations with which we’ve become more familiar, starting the with the one “led” (and, yes, there’s a reason but I’m going into it here) by Robert Falcon Scott, with Ernest Shackleton, attempting to reach the South Pole; however, they didn’t quite make it. But then they split up to try again, with Ernest Shackleton going first, but now you have the issue that there are actually two different South Poles, the magnetic and the geographic, which he reached the magnetic but not the geographic. However, by the time Scott began to make his 2nd attempt he was challenged by Roald Amundsen, who had been on the earlier Belgian excursion, so the race was on, won by the Norwegian, who’d started earlier, even though it wasn’t quite summer yet. Then, later, Shackleton goes again, this time crossing the Arctic Circle.
Myers is quite the prolific writer, once again, proving my point about what diverse writings these authors and can have and, once again, exhibiting my lack of knowledge, because, again, not sure I realized he wrote this book but recognized his name from other books read with my children as part of their book discussion groups when they were in school –
of which this book was gotten as further exploration of studying about Antarctica when one of those book discussion books was a historical fiction novel about one of those expeditions to there, I believe, about the time that it was all in the news because of a new actual historical book out about one such journey – much like the new/old Harper Lee book now