South Pole Centennial

December 14, 1911

One hundred years ago today, after months of desperate cold, preserved food, wicked dryness and beating wind, after skiing many, many miles and enduring lost and broken gear, tired men, cranky dogs and dangerous terrain, Roald Amundsen and his crew (Olav Bjaaland, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, Oscar Wisting, four sledges and 52 dogs) reached the South Pole, alive and happy and sunburned, the first men in history to reach the bottom of our earth. They took measurements to determine their accuracy, and planted the flag of Norway to mark their achievement.

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Amundsen 1

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December 14, 2011

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“When the explorer comes home victorious, everyone goes out to cheer him. We are all proud of his achievement—proud on behalf of the nation and of humanity. We think it is a new feather in our cap… But the rails of science are laid; our knowledge is richer than before. And the light of the achievement shines for all time.”

–Fridtjof Nansen, May 3, 1912

~

We are so proud to be here and to be a part of the US Antarctic Program, to support in our own small, peripheral ways the science that is carried out: astronomy and astrophysics, aeronomy, auroral, and geospace science studies, meteorology, geomagnetism, seismology, earth-tide measurements, and glaciology. Here we live on the seventh continent, dedicated to science and peaceful international exchange, and we are grateful to be a part of its history.

Happy Centennial, everyone. Here’s to the next hundred years.

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6 thoughts on “South Pole Centennial

  1. Thanks so much Kiell, Daniel – the photographs shall live forever. We are grateful also for you both being on South Pole at Centennial for all of us.

  2. Woo hoo – happy centennial, you two!

    We had Rickey, Zach and Marco over at our place on Saturday (with a bunch of other folks) to celebrate a little early by opening a bottle of (replica) Shackleton whiskey.

  3. NANCY L.( GRAM) I STARTED TO CHOKE UP READING THAT LAST
    ABOUT PEACEFUL INTERNATIIONAL COOPERATION, IT IS SO
    NEEDED. MUCH LOVE!

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