Under the Northern Lights, with Illustrations by G. R de Wilde.

Narrative of Captain Allen Young’s expedition in his yacht Pandora (later the Jeannette), 1875-76, into Lancaster Sound, Barrow Strait, and into Peel Sound. Also contains an account of Young’s sledge trips during M’Clintock’s Fox Expedition. The Voyage was privately organized, its object to sail to the magnetic pole by way of Lancaster Sound and from there negotiate the North West Passage. They reached Beechey Island where they found a number of relics left by earlier expeditions but were finally beset by ice in Franklin Strait. There were two other works written on this expedition, both by the commander, one was privately published and contained photographs. (ABEBooks description.)

p. vi-vii: PREFACE. TIIERE have been about two hundred and fifty books written on the Arctic regions. The reader can therefore hardly expect to find in the following pages anything very new or striking. Those who wish to read detailed accounts of voyages in this interesting part of the globe, will find in the nar ratives of Parry, Boss, Franklin, Back, Collinson, McClure, McClintock, Osborn, Kane, Hall, and Hayes, a series of fascinating stories ; while those who want a short and interesting account of all the voyages that have been made to these regions, and a summary of all that is known about them, can do no better than to read the THRESHOLD OF THE UNKNOWN REGION , by Clements R. Markham,—the only intelligent synopsis of Arctic knowledge ever published.

p. 7, the navigating room aboard Pandora: … had a bunk and lockers at each end, and was studded around with twelve or fifteen Snider rifles, half-a-dozen heavy revolvers, two or three deep shelves full of books, a fine large brass-mounted astronomical telescope…, maps and charts, and all sorts of scientific apparatus.

p. 9: Like every other part of the ship it [my cabin] was crammed full of effects all topsy-turvy. In an hour or two I had succeeded in stowing everything—books, guns, oilskins, Arctic boots…—away in lockers and on shelves, and establishing something like order in my future home.

p. 13: On Sunday morning we had prayers in the forecastle with the men. Lieutenant Lillingston read the Church of England service, to which the men all responded very earnestly; and sometimes he read a sermon from one of the well-known preachers. Afterwards, we often had a hymn or two, accompanied by an organ [originally on the Prince Albert]… which, as compared with its Arctic companions, might look down on them as a veteran upon raw recruits.

p. 84: Soon after leaving England we had established a little weekly paper, called the Pandora’s Box, to which everybody was expected to contribute; and the week succeeding our visit to Disko and Yuyarsusuk the editor was considerably amused to find that every contributor had chosen one subject with a unanimity that was somewhat embarrassing. The consequence was that the Pandora’s Box for August 17, 1875, presented a funny succession of articles about the Arctic girls, one of which I hereby present as an evidence that I have not been exaggerating. It was signed ‘Tromp.’

p. 101, re Greenland Eskimos: They have been converted to Christianity by the Danes, who established their authority throughout the whole of Greenland, about a century ago. Nearly all can read and write their own language. There is no country in the world in which the schools that have been established in every village are better attended; and there are very few of the Greenland Eskimos who cannot read and write.

See frontispiece for cartoon of a “perilous situation.”

p. 145: I have just been reading over again the old accounts of that wonderful winter on the ice, as given in the papers by Captain Tyson and his comrades ; and I must say that I could scarcely repress my indignation when I saw that the name of Joe is not even mentioned. They tell us how, when they found there was no hope of reaching land, they built snow-houses, in which they lived all the winter; how they hunted; how they suffered from the cold; how they shot seals and bears and birds, with which they eked out their store of ship’s provisions; how, when they were once out of food of all kinds, they managed to kill a great Ugjuk seal; how another time, when they had not tasted anything for thirty-six hours, they killed a bear, which was sent in their way, and which supplied them with food for a few days more; and we melt with pity and admiration at the recital of such steady, undaunted courage and fortitude.

A long time afterwards it turns out that it was Joe who built them their snow-houses; that it was Joe who hunted for them through the long terrible winter; that it was Joe who killed so many seals; that, in fact, nobody else but Joe and Hans killed a single seal; that it was he who killed the big Ugjuk when they were at the point of starvation; that it was Joe who killed the bear….