To the Arctic by Canoe 1819-1821: The Journal and Paintings of Robert Hood, Midshipman with Franklin

McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP
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When supplies ran out, the return trek across the Barrens became one of the most tragic incidents in the history of Arctic exploration. Robert Hood was one of those who perished on this trip. Weakened by starvation, he was shot through the head by a member of the party turned cannibal. A highly sensitive and educated man with a painter's eye for detail, Hood was an astute observer of the political and social ways of the North. The journal reveals his awareness, unusual in his time, of the adverse effects on Native peoples and their environment of the coming of the Europeans. Hood's paintings capture the beauty as well as the harshness of the North. His bird paintings in particular are of special artistic and historical interest.
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Publisher
McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP
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Published on
Oct 26, 1994
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Pages
280
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ISBN
9780773564916
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Expeditions & Discoveries
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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In 1845, Sir John Franklin set off from England to locate and chart the elusive Northwest Passage. He and his crew of 129 men never returned.

Over the following decade, forty expeditions were launched in an effort to establish the fate of the missing men. But it wasn't until 1854 that traces of their demise were discovered along the western shore of King William Island.

However, without proof, Franklin's wife, Lady Jane, refused to believe that her husband was dead. And so, in 1857, she sponsored a final expedition. Captain Francis Leopold McClintock, a highly regarded Arctic explorer, was given command of the steam yacht Fox, and he and a crew of twenty-five set off in search of evidence. On this quest, the always-adventurous McClintock was the first European to navigate through Bellot Strait and while the Fox was frozen into the ice in winter, he and his men made long and arduous exploratory journeys by dog sled. Eventually the men reached King William Island, where they discovered a cairn at Victory Point. It contained a note, which confirmed not only that Sir John Franklin had died in 1847, but that his crew had, in fact, been the first to discover the Northwest Passage. When this news reached England, Queen Victoria bestowed the Arctic Medal on McClintock and all the officers and men of the Fox.

The Voyage of the 'Fox' in the Arctic Seas is Sir Francis McClintock's own thrilling account of the Fox's journey into the Arctic, and the discovery of the fate of Sir John Franklin and his companions.

"Uncommonly good…makes a compelling case that…intellectual curiosity not only changed Europe, but launched modernity." —Cleveland Plain Dealer

When Columbus first returned to Spain from the Caribbean, he dazzled King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella with exotic parrots, tropical flowers, and bits of gold. Inspired by the promise of riches, countless seafarers poured out of the Iberian Peninsula and wider Europe in search of spices, treasure, and land. Many returned with strange tales of the New World.

Curiosity began to percolate through Europe as the New World’s people, animals, and plants ruptured prior assumptions about the biblical description of creation. The Church, long fearful of challenges to its authority, could no longer suppress the mantra “Dare to know!”

Noblemen began collecting cabinets of curiosities; soon others went from collecting to examining natural objects with fresh eyes. Observation led to experiments; competing conclusions triggered debates. The foundations for the natural sciences were laid as questions became more multifaceted and answers became more complex. Carl Linneaus developed a classification system and sent students around the globe looking for specimens. Museums, botanical gardens, and philosophical societies turned their attention to nature. National governments undertook explorations of the Pacific.

Eminent historian Joyce Appleby vividly recounts the explorers’ triumphs and mishaps, including Magellan’s violent death in the Philippines; the miserable trek of the "new Argonauts" across the Andes on their mission to determine the true shape of the earth; and how two brilliant scientists, Alexander Humboldt and Charles Darwin, traveled to the Americas for evidence to confirm their hypotheses about the earth and its inhabitants. Drawing on detailed eyewitness accounts, Appleby also tells of the turmoil created in the all societies touched by the explorations.

This sweeping, global story imbues the Age of Discovery with fresh meaning, elegantly charting its stimulation of the natural sciences, which ultimately propelled Western Europe toward modernity.

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