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The Southern Cross Expedition

Written by: George Chittenden : 29 Jul 2019

This photo was taken during the first mission of Antarctic exploration. The Southern Cross Expedition was the forerunner of the more famous journeys of Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton. The Southern Cross left London on 23rd August 1898. She was the first expedition to over-winter on the Antarctic mainland, the first to land on the Great Ice Barrier’s surface and even pioneered the use of dogs and sledges in Antarctica.

Despite all these successes the mission was criticised, largely due to its leadership. The Southern Cross Expedition without any doubt furthered our knowledge of the Antarctic continent and provided the basis for future expeditions. Roald Amundsen later acknowledged the significance of the expedition for his own successful trek to the South Pole.

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