46. Great Britain. Admiralty.    

Papers Relative to the Recent Arctic Expeditions in Search of Sir John Franklin and the Crews of H.M.S. “Erebus” and “Terror.   London: Printed by George Edward Eyre and William Spottiswoode, 1854.


Detail of a map of McClure’s voyage in the Investigator and the completion of a Northwest Passage, from Great Britain. Admiralty, Papers Relative to the Recent Arctic Expeditions ,1854.


Launch of the Forlorn Hope in Wellington Channel in 1852, from Great Britain. Admiralty, Papers Relative to the Recent Arctic Expeditions ,1854.

When McClure and the crew of the Investigator were rescued in 1853 and taken back to the Resolute, they had, according to McClure, completed the Northwest Passage, since they had come in from the west and met ships that came in from the east. 

Some of the crew returned to England on the Phoenix in the summer of 1853, and the accomplishment of the Passage was presented to the Admiralty that fall, in the form of a map, compiled by the Captain of the Phoenix, Edward Inglefield. 

The map, published in this Arctic Blue Book, was the first to show a Northwest Passage in print.  Two years later, McClure was awarded the £10,000 prize offered for the first successful completion of the Passage.

Also in this volume is an account of a voyage up Wellington Channel in a whaleboat named, less-than-optimistically, Forlorn Hope.  The commander was Robert McCormick, who, two decades earlier, had been naturalist and surgeon on HMS Beagle. He had resigned in a huff when a ship’s passenger, Charles Darwin, proved to be much better at the job.  However, McCormick seems to have acquitted himself admirably on his several Arctic voyages.  In this instance, he was surgeon aboard the North Star, the supply ship of Belcher’s “Arctic Squadron”.





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