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    Description

    Arctic Exploration: Three Relics from the Ill-fated Lady Franklin Bay Expedition Commanded by Adolphus Greely, 1881-1884. The framed relics have handwritten descriptions; the first relic is a tuft of fabric "from flag placed at most northern point ever reached by man"; the middle piece, blue fabric, is "from bunting used as signal for distress by survivors of Greely party"; the last item is a piece of sealskin leather "source of living when found by relief party". Below is the inscription, "Lockwood the Hero". The three relics are attractively framed in a period oak frame, 5.5" x 8.5", and in very fine condition. An extremely rare and interesting set.

    In 1881 the command of the Lady Franklin Bay Expedition, an astronomical and polar mission, was given to First Lieutenant Adolphus Greely, an army officer with no Arctic experience. The expedition second in command, Lt. James B. Lockwood and another man achieved a new "farthest north" record of 83°24' by planting the United States flag. Twice relief ships failed to reach Greely's party. Finally on June 22, 1884 a ship located the nineteen survivors of the party's original twenty-five man crew. The rest had perished from starvation, drowning, hypothermia, and in one case, gunshot wounds from an execution ordered by Greely. Among the dead was Lockwood. The returning survivors were venerated as heroes, though their heroism was tainted by sensational accusations of cannibalism during the remaining days of low food. Greely eventually was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.


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    Auction Dates
    June, 2010
    26th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
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