Antarctic exploration

Snow-capped Mt Egmont (Taranaki), 8260ft. — Otago Witness, 2.12.1919.
Snow-capped Mt Egmont (Taranaki), 8260ft. — Otago Witness, 2.12.1919.
The culmination of the modern Antarctic campaign in the attainment of the South Pole, in the third serious attempt to reach it, has from a popular standpoint accomplished all that there is to be done in this inhospitable southern continent. 

When, however, the actual state of our knowledge of Antarctica is impartially considered, it is evident that the most extensive field for geographical exploration, in both its scientific and commercial aspects, lies in the frozen regions of the South. 

It may be asked what has been already accomplished in this direction, and in reply the geographer would summarise the results somewhat as follows:- A narrow wedge, with a base of about 400 miles, resting on the Great Ice Barrier discovered by Sir James Clark Ross in 1841 has been driven for 720 miles into the Terra Australis Incognita, as far as the pole itself. 

This has been done by the combined efforts of Scott, Shackleton, and Amundsen.  The high ice-covered plateau of Victoria Land has been penetrated several times in a westerly direction for a considerable distance beyond the immediate mountains, and on one of these sledge journeys the south magnetic pole was located. 

The new British Imperial Antarctic Expedition at present being organised by Mr J. L. Cope, F.R.G.S., who was surgeon and naturalist on Sir Ernest Shackleton’s recent expedition, has among its aims and objects the survey of the uncharted coast-line of Antarctica, the location of mineral and other deposits of economic value known to exist in Victoria Land, and the detailed examination of the physical conditions of air and ocean.

— By R. C. Mossman, F.R.S.E.

Ross Smith reaches Bangkok
Sydney: Captain Ross Smith cables from Bangkok, under date December 1, that he left Rangoon at 7 o’clock, and reached Bangkok at 1 o’clock. 

A heavy storm after passing Moulmein caused delay, and drove him out of his course.  He followed the river Menan south to Bangkok, finding an excellent reception, and assistance was provided by the Siamese Aviation Corps. 

He hopes to land at Singora on December 2 and at Singapore on December 3, all being well.

Sinn Fein threat
London: The Daily Express states that the extreme Sinn Feiners of Dublin are determined to retaliate against the wholesale proclamation of Sinn Fein organisations. 

Lord French and the whole of his staff at Dublin Castle are constantly guarded, as it is feared that attempts will be made to blow up the Government buildings.

It is known that Sinn Feiners have collected a vast stock of high explosives which they are turning into bombs. Constant outrages are perpetrated in the country districts, such as the burning of hay ricks and farm implements where farmers are known to have had dealings with Unionists or Orangemen.

Motor revolution
An interesting feature at the recent agricultural show in the Waikato was the number of motor cars that brought the farmer and his family into the centre for the show (states the New Zealand Herald). 

No fewer than between 400 and 500 cars were counted at one time in the show grounds, and, putting the average value at £400 each, it shows the money invested in the farmers’ means of conveyance.

— ODT, 3.12.1919.



Scott Shackleton and Amundsen. Exactly why do so many venerate Scott? The man was a poor planner, a poor leader and yes, a loser.
Better to write Amundsen, Shackleton and Scott. If there was a hero of Antarctica it was surely Shackleton, who did the most exploration and never lost a man.