polardandy: 100 Years Ago In Polar History: Shackleton gives…


100 Years Ago In Polar History: Shackleton gives the order to abandon ship

Then came a fateful day — Wednesday, October 27. The position was lat. 69 degrees 5’ S., long. 51 degrees 30’ W. The
temperature was — 8.5 degrees Fahr., a gentle southerly breeze was blowing and the sun shone in a clear sky.

“After long months of ceaseless anxiety and strain, after times when hope beat high and times when the outlook was
black indeed, the end of the ‘Endurance’ has come. But though we have been compelled to abandon the ship, which is
crushed beyond all hope of ever being righted, we are alive and well, and we have stores and equipment for the task
that lies before us. The task is to reach land with all the members of the Expedition. It is hard to write what I feel.
To a sailor his ship is more than a floating home, and in the ‘Endurance’ I had centred ambitions, hopes, and desires.
Now, straining and groaning, her timbers cracking and her wounds gaping, she is slowly giving up her sentient life at
the very outset of her career.”

                                                                      – Ernest Shackleton, South!

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