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narrative, in which he takes occasion to In 1830 and 1831 the brig Tula, of 148 lament that he was ill-provided with instru- tons, commanded by Captain Biscoe, prosements of scientific observation, may have cuted the task of discovery under special given a pretext for the doubts which some instructions from its enterprising owner, the foreign authorities have entertained as to great promoter of the southern whale fishery, the reality of this exploit. He told the Mr. C. Enderby. Biscoe did not, like world, however, that he had spent 2401. on Weddell, succeed in passing beyond the dethe purchase of three chronometers, all of gree of soạth latitude which had formed the which performed well; and the whole tone limit of Cook's progress, but, to use the of his narrative and of his observations on words of the Journal of the Geographical the subject of polar navigation, seem to us Society, vol. iii., p. 122, he “made two to bespeak the man of instruction and re- distinct discoveries, at a great distance the search as well as enterprise. Taking into one from the other, and each in the highest account all the circumstances of his expe- southern latitudes which, with a few excepdition, we venture to pronounce that his tions, had yet been attained, or in which performance comes nearer to those of the land had yet been discovered.” These giants of old times, the Baffins, the Davises, were, first, that of Enderby's Land, in lat, and the Hudsons, than any voyage of the 65° 57', and long. 47° 20' east; and next, present age accomplished without the assist that of a range of islands, and of land of ance of governments. We endeavored at unknown extent, situated between the 67th the time to set him in a proper light before and 630 degrees of south latitude, and behis countrymen :--if it be true, as we fear it tween the 63d and 71st degrees of west lonis, that a man of such achievement died in gitude. The principal range of these neglected poverty, let others bear the blame. islands bears the name of Biscoe.
A Russian expedition was fitted out from We find the distinguished name of Mr. Cronstadt in 1819, consisting of two ships, Enderby again associated with Antarctic the Vostock and the Mirui, under the com- discovery in the case of Balleny's voyage, mand of Captains Bellinghausen and Laza- 1839. This voyage demands our more parrew. An account of this expedition, in ticular notice, because its track was followed two volumes with an atlas, was published by Sir James Ross for special reasons in at St. Petersburgh ; but, as far as we know, his two first cruises; because some quesit still remains locked up in the Russian tions have arisen between the American language. In January, 1821, they reached and English expeditions, in which the prethe latitude of 7030'which, in the “Rus- cise position of the islands discovered by sian Encyclopædia," is stated to be the Balleny is concerned ; and lastly, because highest hitherto attained—but the state- there is every reason to suppose that land ment is incorrect, for it falls short of Cook's which D'Urville, in ignorance of Balleny's furthest. An island was discovered in lati- voyage, claims to have discovered, had been tude 68° 57' and longitude 90° 46' W., in fact seen by Balleny. We have, indeed, and called the island of Peter I. Floating little doubt that should subsequent researchice prevented the vessels from approaching es prove that the south pole is the centre this land nearer than fourteen miles, but of a vast continent, the outworks of which in its insular character appears to have been some longitudes are to be found in the ascertained, and the height of its summits neighborhood of the 70th degree of south was calculated at 4,200 feet. Their next latitude, but indented by at least one bay to discovery appears on the maps as Alexan- the height of the 79th, the first and second der's Island, in latitude 60° 43', longitude claimants to its discovery will be the gal73° 10' W. It would appear, however, that lant agents of Mr. Enderby, Captains BisBellinghausen was unable to trace the pro- coe and Balleny. The schooner Eliza longation of this land to the south, and it has Scott, of 154 tons, commanded by Mr. been considered as not improbable that it John Balleny, and the dandy-rigged cutter is continuous with the land afterwards dis- Sabrina, of 54 tons, Mr. H. Freeman, covered by Captain Biscoe, and designated master, sailed from the southern end of as Graham's Land. Bellinghausen himself New Zealand, January 7, 1839, fitted for took care to call it Alexander's Land, not sealing purposes, but with Mr. Enderby's Alexander's Island. Be this as it may, to usual liberal instructions to lose no opporthe Russian undoubtedly belonged the ho- tunity of pushing as far as possible to the nor, previous to 1840, of having discovered south. They crossed the track of Bellingthe southernmost known land.
hausen on the 24th, and continued without
material impediment a southward course whom we are indebted for what we know over the very spot where the Russian navi- of Balleny's voyage, to find that his anticigator in lat. 63o had been compelled by ice pations of its proving useful to the success to alter his course to the eastward in 1820. of Sir James Ross's greater expedition have On the 1st of February they had reached been so fully borne out. the parallel of 699 in long. 1729 east, 220 The services of Ross and his gallant commiles to the southward of the extreme panions covered a space of three years, expoint which Bellinghausen had been able to clusive of the passages to and from the attain in this meridian. This evidence of Cape of Good Hope. During this period the shifting character of the ice in this di- three distinct voyages were accomplished. rection was the circumstance which induced Their first departure from Simon's Bay Sir James Ross to select this quarter for took place of the 6th of April, 1840, and his first attempt. Here the packed ice com- pursuing a course to the northward of and pelled them to work to the northwest ; and nearly parallel to the 50th degree of south on attaining the 66th degree, in long. 1630 latitude, they reach Van Dieman's Land on east, they discovered a group of islands, the 16th of August, and after having passed which turned out to be five in number. A two months and a half of the winter season landing was with much risk effected by Mr. at Kerguelen's Island. On the 12th of Freeman on one of these, the summit of November, 1840, they left Hobart Town, which, estimated to rise to the height of and after some stay at the Auckland islands, 12,000 feet, emitted smoke, as if to corro- finally sailed in a direct course towards those borate the evidence of volcanic origin fur- entirely unexamined regions which were the nished by the fragments of scoriæ and ba- main points of their ambition. They resalt mixed with crystals of olivine collected turned to Hobart Town late in the autumn from the beachless base of its perpendicular of that latitude, April 7, 1841. During cliffs. In their further progress the vessels this cruise was accomplished the discovery must have passed within a short distance of of the vast extent of mountainous continent Cape Clairée, a projection of the land to which now bears the gracious name of Vicwhich M. D'Urville in the following year toria; the active volcano, Mount Erebus, gave the name of Adelie, in right of his and the extinct one, Mount Terror; and the supposed discovery. On the 2d of March, icy barrier, probably an outwork of conin lat. 699 58', long, 121° 8', land was tinued land, which, running east and west again discovered, which now figures on the for some hundreds of miles in the 78th demap by the name of Sabrina. We cannot gree of south latitude, prevents all approach omit to mention that on this voyage a phe- to the pole on either side of the 180th degree nomenon was observed, which strikingly of longitude. Between July and November, illustrated that transporting power of ice to the vessels visited Sydney and New Zeawhich so extensive an influence has been land, remaining three months at the latter. attributed by some eminent geologists. At The second voyage commenced on the a distance of 1400 miles from the nearest 15th of November, 1841, and was pursued known land, though possibly within 300, towards the region explored in the former or even 100, miles from land which may trip, and with nearly the same success. hereafter be discovered, an iceberg was From the 18th of December to the 2d of seen with a block of rock, some twelve feet February, the ships were employed in forcin height, attached to it at nearly a hun- ing their way through pack-ice from the dred feet from the sea-line. We cannot | 62d to the 68th degree of south latitude; here pursue the train of reflection and the- and when, on the 23d of February, they at ory which the appearance of this luggage- length reached the icy barrier, in long. 162° van of the ocean is calculated to suggest. west, the season was too far advanced to Mr. Darwin on this, and other similar evi- admit of further attempts to find an opendence, observes that “if one iceberg in a ing. Having approached within a mile and thousand, or ten thousand, transports its a half of the barrier, in lat. 78° 10' south, fragment, the bottom of the Antarctic sea, some six miles further to the southward and the shores of its islands, must already than the limit of their former voyage, they be scattered with masses of foreign rock, commenced their reluctant retreat, and not the counterpart of the erratic boulders of having seen land for 138 days, gained a the northern hemisphere.” It must be gra- winter anchorage in Berkeley Sound, off the tifying to the writer in the Journal of the Falkland Islands, on the 6th of April, 1842. Geographical Society, vol. ix., p. 517, tol The spring season of this year, between Sep
tember and December, was occupied by a obliged to relinquish a more extended exploration cruise to Cape Horn, and back to Berkeley of this new-discovered land; but the weakly conSound.
dition of his crews imperatively demanded of him
to discontinue his laborious exertions, and return The third polar voyage was commenced
to a milder climate to restore the health of his enon the 17th of December, 1842, in a direc- feebled people, upon finding that the western part tion nearly opposite to that of the two for- of the Côte Clairée turned away suddenly to the mer years, and towards the region explored south ward. He accordingly bore away on the 1st by Weddell. The difficulties and dangers of February, and reached Hobart Town on the encountered in this last attempt appear to 17th of the same month, after an absence of only have exceeded those of the two former voy- Côte Clairée had been seen
by Balleny in the pre
seven weeks. Although the western point of the ages, and the lat. 71° 30', long. 15° west, ceding summer, it was mistaken by him for an formed the limit of their southward cruise. enormous iceberg, and the land he at first imagined The ships gained the Cape of Good Hope he saw behind it he afterwards thought might only on the 4th of April, 1843, within two days be clouds. These circumstances are mentioned in of three years after they had first quitted the log book of the Eliza Scott, but are not inthose parts.
serted here with the least intention of disputing We do not profess in the above summary honor of this very important discovery.
the unquestionable right of the French to the to have enumerated all the commanders
“ The result of the American expedition was, who, between the period of Cook's expedi- in compliance with the instructions of the governtion and the year 1840, had attained high ment, kept profoundly secret on their return to southern latitudes in various directions, or Sydney, and nothing appeared in the local papers even made discoveries of land. We be- respecting their extensive operations but uncertain lieve, however, that from it our readers conjectures and contradictory statements. I felt, may derive a correct general notion of the therefore, the more indebted to the kind and genecondition and progress of Antarctic disco- rous consideration of Lieutenant Wilkes, the disvery down to the period when the French tinguished commander of the expedition, for a long
letter on various subjects, which his experience and American expeditions, under D’Ur- had suggested as likely to prove serviceable to me, ville and Wilkes, gained, nearly simultane- under the impression that I should still attempt to ously, some ten months' start of Ross in penetrate to the southward on some of the merithese seas. The result of these expeditions, dians he had visited; a tracing of his original so far as concerns our present subject, may chart accompanied his letter, showing the great best be given in the following passages those parts of the coast which he thought we
extent of his discoveries, and pointing out to me from Sir James Ross's work :-*
should find most easily accessible. These docu. “ The most interesting news that awaited us on ments would indeed have proved of infinite value our arrival at Van Dieman's Land [August, 1810], to me had I felt myself compelled to follow the related to the discoveries made, during the last strict letter of my instructions, and I do not the summer, in the southern regions by the French ex- | less appreciate the motives which prompted the pedition, consisting of the Astrolabe and Zelée, communication of those papers because they did under the command of Captain Dumont D'Urville, not eventually prove so useful to me as the Ameand by the United States expedition under Lieute- rican commander had hoped and expected ; and I nant Charles Wilkes, in the frigate Vincennes. avail myself of this opportunity of publicly ex
“The accounts published, by the authority of pressing the deep sense of thankfulness I feel to Captain D'Urville, in the local papers, stated, that him for his friendly and highly honorable conduct. the French ships sailed from Hobart Town on the “ The arduous and persevering exertions of this 1st of January, 1840, and discovered land on the expedition, continued throughout a period of more evening of the 19th ; and, on the 21st, some of the than six weeks, under circumstances of great officers landed upon a small islet lying some dis- peril and hardship, cannot fail to reflect the highest tance from the mainland, and procured some speci- credit on those engaged in the enterprise, and exmens of its granitic rock. D'Urville traced the land cite the admiration of all who are in the smallest in a continuous line one hundred and fifty miles, degree acquainted with the laborious and difficult between the longitudes of 136° and 140° east, in nature of an icy navigation; but I am grieved to about the latitude of the Antarctic circle. It was be obliged ta add, that, at the present time, they do entirely covered with snow, and there was not the not seem to have received either the approbation least appearance of vegetation : its general height or reward their spirited exertions merit. The narwas estimated at about one thousand three hun- rative of their comprehensive labors is now in the dred feet. M. D'Urville named it Terre Adélie. hands of the public; I need, therefore, make no Proceeding to the westward, they discovered and further remark here on the subject. sailed about sixty miles along a solid wall of ice, " That the commanders of each of these great one hundred and fifty feet high, which he, believ- national undertakings should have selected the ing to be a covering or crust of a more solid base, very place for penetrating to the southward, for named Côte Clairée. It must have been extremely the exploration of which they were well aware at painful to lhe enterprising spirit of D'Urville to be l the time that the expedition under my command
was expressly preparing, and thereby forestalling such a work. To Captain Wilkes we must
scientific, which they will not be found qua-
conviction that, however rivalled by our equally unsuccessful issue to an attempt we Anglo-Saxon relations in blue water, we as might make where the Americans and French had yet manage matters better in the dockyard. so signally_failed to get beyond even the 670 of If, with respect to an isolated occurrence latitude. For I was well aware how ill-adapted in this instance, a controversy has risen in their ships were for as ervice of that nature, from which the evidence appears to us conclusive not being fortified to withstand the shocks and in favor of Sir J. Ross, we are less inclined pressure they must have been necessarily exposed to leave unnoticed the fact that the Ameto, had they ventured to penetrate any extensive body of ice. They would have equally failed had rican ships appear to have been not only they tried it upon the meridian I had now chosen, insufficiently strengthened for this Polar for it will be seen we met with a broad belt of ice, navigation-which in their case, as in that upwards of two bundred miles across, which it of Captain Cook, formed but an episode of would have been immediate destruction to them to their instructions, but ill-found for an exhave encountered; but which, in our fortified ves- tensive voyage of discovery in any direcsels, we could confidently run into, and push our
tion. way through into the open sea beyond. Without such means it would be utterly impossible for
It was on the 11th of January, 1841,
any one, under such circumstances, however bold or and in that 71st degree of south latitude pereevering, to attain a high southern latitude.”- which formed the limit of Cook's southward Vol. i., pp. 113-118.
course, that the first distinct vision was ob
tained by Ross's expedition of the vast volAny detailed notice of the published canic continent which bars access to the voyages of the two able and distinguished southern magnetic pole, and probably to navigators with whom the pursuit of a com- the pole of the earth. Appearances of mon object brought Captain Ross into a land there had been some days earlier, sufgenerous and peaceful ri alry, is beside our ficiently plausible to have deterred less expresent purpose. We must pay, however, perienced navigators, and perhaps to have our tribute of admiration to the skill of left spurious traces on maps which might French artists and the liberality of French have waited long for correction. On this Government patronage, as illustrated in day, however, Mount Sabine rose conspicuthe splendid atlas of D'Urville. Nor canous in the view, attaining, as was afterwe omit to lament the dreadfrl and un-wards ascertained, the height of nearly timely death, by the catastropue on the 10,000 feet, at a distance of some thirty Versailles railroad, of the man whose genius miles from the coast. A long range of and enterprise furnished the material for mountains of scarcely less elevation wag
perceived towards the northwest. The struggled on to the southward, generally magnetic observations taken here placed against adverse winds, to the 73d degree, the magnetic pole in lat. 76o; long. 145o discovering and naming, after various offi20' E., therefore in the direction true ciaľ and scientific individuals, new mounsouthwest from the position of the ships, tains and islands. In a moment of calm and distant some 500 miles. The land, the dredge was let down in 270 fathoms; however, Sir James says
and the result was a variety of living plun
der, the Captain's remarks whereupon must • interposed an insuperable obstacle to our direct be quoted :approach to it; and we had to choose whether we should trace the coast to the north west, with the
“ It was interesting among these creatures to hope of turning the western extreme of the land, recognise several that I had been in the habit of and thence proceed to the south, or follow the taking in equally high northern latitudes; and alsoutherly coast-line and thence take a more
though contrary to the general belief of naturalists, westerly course. The latter was preferred, as
I have no doubt that from however great a depth being more likely to extend our researches into we may be enabled to bring up the mud and stones. higher latitudes, and as affording a better chance of of the bed of the ocean, we shall find them teem. afterwards attaining one of the principal objects ing with animal life ;. the extreme pressure at the of our voyage ; and although we could not but greatest depth does not appear to affect these creafeel disappointed in our expectation of shortly tures. Hitherto we have not been able to deterreaching the magnetic pole, yet these mountain's mine this point beyond a thousand fathoms; but being in our way, restored to England the honor from that depth several shellfish have been brought of the discovery of the southernmost known land, up with the mud.”—P. 202. which had been nobly won by the intrepid Bel.
On the 22d of January the reckoning of linghausen, and for more than twenty years re- the ships gave the latitude 74° 20' south, tained by Russia.”—P. 187.
and a double allowance of grog was issued The mainland, fenced by a projecting to celebrate the first attainment of a higher barrier of ice, on which a tremendous surf
dell. was breaking, defied all attempts at access,
After struggling through the heavy but at much risk a hasty landing was effect- pack ice which fringed the coast for 50 ed on one of a group of islands situated in miles, they gained clear water on the 20th ; lat. 71° 56', and long. 171° 7' E. The Mount Melbourne, a peak some 12,000 usual ceremonies of taking possession were
feet high; being visible at a distance of solemnized under a heavy assault from the perhaps eighty miles. A landing was with aboriginal inhabitants, the penguins, who much difficulty effected on an island twelve disputed with their beaks the title of Queen Franklin ; and this proceeding led' Ross to
miles long, honored with the name of Victoria. Not a trace of vegetation was the conclusion that the vegetable kingdom perceived; but that of our Australasian has no representative whatever in those lacolonies may one day profit by the accumulated guano of ages, which annoyed the titudes. Animal vitality, however, triumphs stoutest of the invaders by its stench.
here over all obstacles, both on land and in Whales were swarming in all directions, the seal swarm about precipices of igneous
the ocean; and the petrel, the gull, and unconscious that the spell of that long rock, which leave no ledge on which the security which they had enjoyed in this re- footboard of a captain's gig can be planted. mote region was probably broken ; thirty In the night of January 27, the ship stood were counted at one time. We can hardly, in clear weather, towards some land which however, share Sir James's anticipations as to the future success of our whale-fishers in at first seemed an island, but which turned this quarter. For the present, at least,
out to be the peak of a volcano 12,600 feet believe that in such distant regions 'the in height, in full activity upon the conti
nent. whale-fishing can only be pursued with
This magnificent and impressive profit in conjunction with the chase of the object was named Mount Erebus; and an seal. The precipitous cliffs of the circum- extinct, or at least inactive neighbor, of polar continents, or islands, would appear Mount T'error.
about 11,000 feet in elevation, was called
We find what follows in in no instance to afford that line of beach which is essential for the capture of the the Notes to the “Botany of the Antarctic seal; and we cannot believe that under- Expedition,” drawn up by Sir W. Hooker, writers would insure on moderate terms
from the journal of his son, the accomagainst the chances of packed ice, beyond a plished naturalist to the expedition :certain latitude. From this date the ships " It was on the following day, Jan. 28, in lat.. VOL. XII. No. I.