The Fram Museum is proud to make Roald Amundsen’s diaries from the South Pole Expedition available to the public for the first time, almost a hundred years after they were written. Some of the contents will be known to readers of Amundsen’s book The South Pole, published in 1913, but much of it will be new material for most people. This includes Amundsen’s praise of his fellow crew members; his thoughts on the conflict with Hjalmar Johansen and details of daily life aboard the Fram and in the Framheim winter station.
The Amundsen diaries reveal in great detail every aspect of the preparations for the sledging expedition towards the South Pole and the “good life” in Antarctica. Amundsen is intensely proud of his comrades efforts and different solutions they come up with to improve their clothing and equipment. He muses on July 5 1911, ….no-one before us had equipment like this, not even remotely resembling it”. He also writes about his puzzlement over the British explorers choice of ponies and motor sledges and their lack of enthusiasm for dogs and fur clothing.
The Amundsen diaries give readers the opportunity to travel back in time to one of the highlights of international polar exploration. Amundsen kept his diary every day, so we can join him from the moment when the Fram left his home south of Oslo, until the telegram about his success was published all over the world in March, 1912. The diaries take us on a oceanographic cruise around the British Isles to Bergen, via Kristiansand and Madeira – where the crew was told about the change of plans for the expedition – and then on a four and a half month voyage to Antarctica through nine months of preparations under the ice in Framheim; 99 days of sledging to the South Pole and back, and the first part of the journey home.
This first publication of Roald Amundsen´s diaries from the Third Fram Expedition is illustrated with more than 270 photos from the expedition itself. Many of these are previously unpublished.
Roald Amundsen´s Diaries from the South Pole Expedition 1910-12
Roald Amundsen, Geir O. Kløver (red.)
The Fram Museum