By: Frank Hurley
The return of the sun. "Extremely heavy precipitation of rime (ice) crystals during the night, our rigging being heavily encrusted, some of the ropes being over 3” in diameter, but the effect is beautiful.” (Hurley, diary)
Around the ship, blocks of ice caught between moving floes jumped like cherry stones squeezed between a gigantic thumb and finger, the wind blew hard all night, then dropped the following morning allowing Hurley to capture this spectacular photograph with all quiet and serene.
In August 1914, days before the outbreak of the First World War, the renowned explorer Ernest Shackleton and a crew of twenty seven set sail for the South Atlantic in pursuit of the last unclaimed prize in the history of exploration: the first crossing on foot of the Antarctic continent. Weaving a treacherous path through the freezing Weddell Sea, they had come within 85 miles of their destination when their ship Endurance was trapped fast in the ice pack. Soon the ship was crushed like matchwood, leaving the crew stranded on the floes. Their ordeal would last for twenty months, and they would make two near-fatal attempts to escape by open boat before their final rescue.
This 8"x10" photograph is matted and sleeved and measures 11"x14". Reproduced from the original glass plate, the finished product is of near perfect quality.
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