Scott's Last Expedition: Images From His Doomed South Pole Trek

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Voyage into History

Credit: Courtesy of Charles Leski, Leski Auctions.

The Terra Nova, the ship that carried Robert Falcon Scott's ill-fated expedition to the frozen continent that would be his grave, in a photograph dated…Read More »

December 13, 1910.
Here, the ship is seen held up by the ice pack.

Scott did indeed reach the pole on January 17, 1912 only to discover that Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen beat him there by several weeks, on December 14, 1911. Scott and his men, ill-equipped for the onset of the Antarctic winter, died on their trek back toward their base. Their frozen corpses, still bundled inside sleeping bags, along with diaries filled with last thoughts, were found in November 1912.

This photo is signed "H.G. Ponting." Herbert George Ponting was the official photographer for the expedition. Ponting didn't accompany the crew inland, in the race to reach the Pole, and thus survived to bring his photographs and even some early film footage back to civilization for all to see. He took all the photos included in this gallery. They are offered up for sale at an auction of polar exploration memorabilia on Sept. 20, 2011 at Leski Auctions in Melbourne, Australia.

Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000 Minimum Bid: $2,900

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Andrea Mustain

Andrea Mustain was a staff writer for Live Science from 2010 to 2012. She holds a B.S. degree from Northwestern University and an M.S. degree in broadcast journalism from Columbia University.
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