King was among the most ascerbic critics of most explorers other than himself, carrying his battles through the press and elsewhere. His expedition was ???
p. 108-10, a series of letters from London newspapers describing the initial hostile reactions to Eskimo and John Rae accounts of the discovery of the first group of Franklin relics.
p. 190-91: With a sea party, such as the Admiralty have proposed, the time will be spent in acting plays and other merry-andrew tricks that the officers may make a book out of the sterility around them. The western party will be further occupied in transporting, as the traveller Simpson, their boat to Coppermine River, and the eastern party their boat to Great
Fish River. As soon as these rivers are open the parties must be in progress, the one for Cape Britannia, or Ripon Island as it was once called, and the other for Victoria Land; the one to ascertain the connection
of the mainland with that of North Somerset, or with Melville Peninsula, and, if the former, the character of its western shore; and the
other to trace Victoria Land westerly with the view of testing its value relatively to the North-West-Passage.
p. 198-99: On the 20th June, ’55, Mr. James Anderson, a chief factor in the service of the Hudson Bay Company, started from Fort Resolution, a trading Post of the Company on the Great Slave Lake, for Montreal
Island and Point Ogle, in three canoes, and returned on the 17th September. This is the narrative;—
"We had the advantage of Sir George Back’s Map and Narrative, the former, the one attached to his book, was on far too small a scale for our purpose, but the latter was of great service. We found the want also of an Esquimaux interpreter”.
"On the 30th July, ’55, at the rapids below Lake Franklin, three Esquimaux lodges were seen on the opposite shore, and shortly after an elderly man crossed to us. After the portage was made, we crossed over, and immediately perceived various articles belonging to a boat, such as tent poles and kayack paddles made out of ash oars, pieces of mahogany, elm, oak, and pine; also copper and sheet iron boilers, tin soup tureens,
pieces of instruments, a letter nip with the date 1848, a broken hand saw, chisels, &c Only one man was at the lodges, but the women, who were very intelligent, made us understand by words and signs, that these
articles came from a boat, and the white men belonging to it had died of starvation.
"We, of course, by shewing them books and written papers, endeavoured to ascertain if they possessed any papers, offering to give them plenty of the goods we had with us for them; but, though they evidently understood us, they said they had none. They did not scruple to shew us all their hidden treasures….”
p. 202, while stranded and hungry on Maconochie Island: Any books or papers left open would be destroyed by the perpetual winds and rain in this quarter in a very short space of time; for instance, a large book, Raper’s Navigation, was left open on a cloak at Montreal Island; it was blown open, and the leaves were pattering about in such a way that, had it not been instantly closed, it would soon have been torn in pieces.
"JAMES ANDERSON, OF."
p. 208: Sir George Back settled the vexed question in language peculiarly his own. "He wholly rejected all and every idea of any attempt on the part of Franklin to send boats to any point of the mainland in the
vicinity of Great Fish River." As Medical Referee to the London and Continental Life Office, I have to read language of this kind:—Are you sober? Particularly so; a mere mistake, I generally find, for Particularly drunk.