Search for John Franklin. (From the private journal of an officer of the Fox.

This is an account of the wintering of the Fox in 1857-58 in the Davis Strait, by the second officer:

p. 103, Dec 4; A reading, writing, and navigation school has commenced, and our captain (McClintock) loses no opportunity of attending to the amusement and recreation of the men, so necessary in this dreary life.

Dec 21: The winter solstice. We have about half an hour’s partial daylight, by which the type of The Times newspaper may be just distinguished on a board facing north. (roughly 75˚N)

p. 105, Dec 28: Philosophers would bid us think and reflect; but if philosophers were shut up with us amid the silence and darkness of an Arctic winter, they would probably do as we did—endeavour to get away from our thoughts.

p. 115, inn November 1858, near Boothia: on the 14th the sun disappeared…and by the light of our solitary dip we tried to pass the weary hours by reading, sleeping, and smoking.

p. 117: Near Cape Herschel, the Captain’s party found a human skeleton upon the beach as the man had fallen down and died, with his face to the ground; and a pocket-book, containing letters in German which have not yet been deciphered, was found close by.

p. 119, near Point Victory: Clearing away the snow, he (Hobson) found in the bottom of the boat two human skeletons…besides a number of Bibles, prayer and other religious books; and although one of the Bibles was underlined in almost every verse, yet not a single writing was found to throw further light upon the history of the retreating parties.

p. 121, Aug. 23, 1859: Our happy cruise was at an end, and by the mercy of Providence we were permitted to land again in England.