In the 1830s, much of the world was still unexplored territory to European and American travelers, and the forbidding Antarctic region represented perhaps the ultimate mystery. Was there, in fact, a new polar continent where James Cook during his voyages of the 1770s had encountered only "Firm Field and Vast Mountains of Ice?" The prospect of discovering a lucrative whaling ground made this as yet uncharted and unexploited region especially enticing. Three expeditions to the pole were launched simultaneously by the United States, France, and Britain, each nation vying to be the first to forge a path through the pack ice and venture farther south than any vessel had ever sailed before. The leaders of these expeditions paved the way for the explorers, traders, and whalers of what was to become known as the "Heroic Age" of Antarctic exploration. The Race to the White Continent is a colorful and captivating account of their travels and adventures.
About Alan Gurney
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Published September 1, 2000
by W. W. Norton & Company.
History, Sports & Outdoors, Travel, War.