The epic adventure of Sir Ernest Shackleton and his ship Endurance should certainly be well known to those interested in history.
That the crew of the Endurance survived—every one—after having their ship sunk, camping on ice floes until the Antarctic summer arrived, and sailing out into the stormy South Atlantic on two small boat voyages to reach their rescue is amazing enough and an enduring tribute to the bravery, skill, and—fittingly—endurance of Shackleton and his crew. Even more unbelievable is that Frank Hurley, the expedition photographer, kept a complete record of their travails, and never allowed his developed plates to be left behind, even when it meant carrying the plates instead of extra food.
The Royal Geographical Society has mounted an exhibition highlighting new digital scans of the glass photographic plates taken by the Endurance’s photographer. “Enduring Eye: The Antarctic Legacy of Sir Ernest Shakleton and Frank Hurley” opened in London on 21 November 2015, 100 years to the day after the Endurance was finally crushed by Antarctic pack ice and sunk.
For those of us unable to visit London, the Royal Geographical Society has created a very nice on-line version of the exhibition on its website as well.