Obrazy na stronie

cumbered with ice to the distance of four or land, and ascended the hill, and then say five miles all round them, while the strait that the ice in Barrow's Strait was all adrift was generally as clear and navigable as any and broken up, to the utmost limits of vision part of the Atlantic.” Before the last Com- assisted by a telescope. On the 10th of mittee, M'Clintock stated that there was no July, as we learn from Osborn appearance of the sea being navigable west of Melville Island — and then followed some west in Barrow's Strait, except between Grif

Not a particle of ice was to be seen east or questions by Parry:

fith’s Island and Cape Martyr, where, some ten the whole of the ice to the southward of Melville where else a clear sea spread itself, sparkling and Sir E. Parry: — Does that remark apply to miles from the water, and in the centre of a fixed

floe, our unlucky squadron was jammed. EveryIsland ? M'Clintock. — No. Purry. — State whereabouts in your opinion it was likely to be

breaking under a fresh southerly breeze. navigable to the south of Melville Island. Surely this must have taught our young lieuM'Clintock. – I think to the east of Winter tenant that it was very possible for a navigaHarbor. Parry. — Then you think a ship could ble sea to exist, at some miles' distance from probably get to the southward and westward

an ice-bound coast. It was August before more easily to the eastward of Winter Harbor: the ships were free. Captain Austin then than by going on to the west part of Melville Island ? M'Clintock. — Yes.

addressed an official note to Penny, distinctly

asking " whether you consider that the search When Parry himself was off the east end of Wellington Strait, made by the expedition of Melville Ísland, he found his soundings under your charge, is so far satisfactory as to uniformly increase as he went to the south. render a further prosecution in that direc" In standing to the southward, we had grad- tion, if practicable, unnecessary?” The reply ually deepened the soundings to 105 fathoms," was — Here is proof of deep water in the direction

Assistance Bay, 11th August, 1851. Franklin was ordered to take; nor is there SIR — Your question is easily answered. My any evidence to show that there may not be, opinion is, Wellington Channel requires no at certain seasons, a navigable sea to the further search. All has been done in the power south, which may lead, as M'Clintock sup- of man to accomplish, and no trace has been poses, far to the west of the Parry group. found. What else can be done? I have, &c. Of Penny's parties one followed the west

WILLIAM PExxy. ern and the other the eastern side of Wel

The lington Channel, until both were stopped by entrance of Wellington Channel was then full

The following day Penuy put to sea. reaching open water. Captain Stewart, on of heavy ice, nor did there appear any probathe east, or rather north side of the channel, bility that it would break up that season. reached Cape Becher 30th May; from hence he could see water washing the land all Penny, states that he now determined to get

home before the other ships. along, with much broke-up ice in the offing. Mr. Goodsir, on the opposite shore, first saw When I saw Sir John Ross taken in tow by open water from Disappointment Bay on the Captain Austin, from this moment I was deter20th of May. To the west an open channel mined I should go home before him, and had appeared. "Penny himself, traversing the great cause to be satisfied with the decision, for channel from south to north, reached the I had every reason to suppose that disrepute islands which divide the strait into three nar- would be thrown upon what we had done, and I row channels. From Point Surprise, on the told this to my officers. Penny's Evidence. north of Baillie Hamilton island, he beheld a Pushing forward with all speed, Penny ar vast expanse of open water, and here, he tells rived in London on the 12th of September. us," the expression that escaped me was, Austin's ships explored the entrances of Jones' • No one will ever reach Sir John Franklin ; Sound and Smith's Sound, and did not reach here we are, and no traces are to be found;' home for a fortnight or three weeks later. so we returned to the sledges very much dis- In the mean time Mr. Penny addressed a letter appointed.” (Suth. ii. 132.) Determining to the Admiralty, asserting his conviction to prosecute the search further in a boat, ho that the missing expedition had gone up returned to the ships with all speed, and suc- Wellington Channel, and that “its course ceeded in getting a boat to the edge of the should be therein followed with the utmost water by the 17th of June, but a succession energy, determination, and despatch.". This of contrary gales prevented him after all from suggestion was so contrary to the spirit of getting further than Baring Island — though his note to Austin on the 11th of August, there was open water to the north-west. He that he was called on by the Admiralty to got back to his ships on the 25th of July. transmit a copy of his oficial correspondence.

Towards the close of June the ice in Bar- In place of doing so, he made statements to row's Strait broke up. Mr. Stewart, under the effect that he had entreated Captain date of the 27th, writes : -"I went to the Austin to give him a steamer to make an

effort to get up. Wellington Channel, and Fitzjames there is, under date of June 6, that his last words to Austin were, “Go up 1845, one very remarkable passage : Wellington Channel, sir, and you will do good service to the cause." As the result

At dinner to-day Sir John gave us a pleasant of these, and other statements of a like kind, account of his expectations of being able to get a committee of Arctic officers was appointed through the ice on the coast of America, and his to inquire into the circumstances. They disbelief in the idea that there is open sea to the properly came to the conclusion that Captain northward. He also said he believed it possible

to reach the pole over the ice by wintering at Austin could put only one construction on Spitzbergen, and going in the spring, before the Mr. Penny's letters, and would not have been ice broke up and drifted to the south, as it did justified in commencing a fresh search in a with Parry on it. — Mangles, 78. direction concerning which he naturally considered himself to have received the most au To our mind these words are conclusive as thentic information.

to Franklin's hopes and intentions. In his At the time when open water was dis- second journey to the Mackenzie river, 1825-6, covered bigh up Wellington Channel the sea he himself writes that from the summit of in every other direction was covered with | Garry Island solid ice. The fact is remarkable, whatever conclusion may be drawn from it. The

the sea appeared in all its mnjesty, entirely free prevalent opinion seems to be that Franklin, its navigation ; and never was a prospect more

from ice, and without any visible obstruction to istence of this open water, thenceforth di- gratifying than that which lay open to us. rected all his energies to meet it, and suc- Then he had ardently wished for a ship in ceeded in the attempt. There are, however, / which he could leave that shallow shore, and not inconsiderable difficulties in the way of steer direct for Behring's Strait. It was this this supposition. Bo it conceded that in the sea which he was instructed to reach, and summer of 1846 Franklin found the entrance which there seemed every probability of his of the channel open, and knew of the sea reaching by pushing to the south-west between beyond it, does it follow, as matter of cer- 100° and 110° W. long. It was greatly in tainty, that he would take that course? The favor of his attempting this passage that, even mere fact of a prospect of open water to the should he meet with obstructions, he might north might not appear to him of much im- reasonably hope to reach the North American portance, as it is commonly found throughout shore by boats, or by a journey across the ice, the winter at the head of Baffin's Bay and and thus connect the discoveries of Parry with in gulfs on the coast of Greenland, where the his own. tide, as in Wellington Channel, runs high Fairly stated the case stands thus : - On the and sets strongly. We know that Sir John supposition that he ascended the Channel, we Barrow warned Franklin and his officers must suppose either that he disobeyed the Adagainst attempting Wellington Channel miralty orders (which all who know him agree not because it inight be closed, but because, he would not do), or that he tried to penetrate

to the south-west before he entered his winter as far as experience went, it was always entirely harbor or immediately on quitting it. Could free from ice to what extent it might go, or into what diffi- he have made the attempt in 1815? He left culties it might lead. — Mungles, 37, 38.

Disco Island on the 12th July, and at the close

of that month was struggling with the middle We have seen what his Instructions were ; ice in Baffin's Bay. He had himself, as we and Richardson observes :

learn from Fitzjames, a perfect knowledge of It is admitted by all who are intimately ac

the difficulty there would be in getting to Lan

caster Sound : quainted with Sir John Franklin, that his first endeavor would be to act up to the letter of his

Parry was fortunate enough, in his first Instructions.

voyage, to sail right across in nine or ten days Sir F. Beaufort says, " He was not a man

- a thing unheard of before or since. In his to treat his orders with levity;" and such is through

fields of ice, and did not get in till Sep

next voyage he was fifty-four days toiling the testimony of all the important witnesses. tember - yet Lancaster Sound is the point we It is only on the supposition that Franklin look to as the beginning of our work. found it impossible to penetrate to the southwest that any of his friends imagine he Now, progress from Disco Island to Lancasmight have tried Wellington Channel. ter Sound took Ross (Sir John) in his first

Setting aside all gossiping communication, voyage from 17th June to 30th August. Sir usually a fertile source of error, and oftener James Ross, in 1848, was from 20th July to 20th supplied by imagination than by memory, August, struggling through the middle ice,

are not without decisive evidence of and did not reach Cape Yorke till 1st SeptemFranklin's real opinion. In the diary of l ber. Penny's ships were at Disco Island May CCCCLXX.





3rd, 1850, and did not reach Beechey Island make more than imperfectly known. Franktill 26th August. To make the same distance lin's ships may have been, as the Fury was, took Mr. Kennedy, in 1851, from the com- forced ashore in some narrow, ice-choked mencement of July till the 4th September, channel far to the west, or they may have and Sir E. Belcher, in the remarkably open been caught in the bottom of some gulf from season of 1852, from June 12th to August 11th. which they have been unable to escape. It is not probable that Franklin could have Between him and the American continent reached Barrow's Strait until the end of there may be mountainous land, and immense August or beginning of September; and it is fields of that peculiar sharp-pointed ice which hardly conceivable that he could that season Kellett says it would be impossible to traverse have satisfied himself that there was no pas- by any exertion or contrivance. He describes sage to the south-west — more especially as it as he must have taken up his station early, and before

very much broken, or rough, with pinnacles of young ice began to form.

considerable height. Travelling over it for any Shall we suppose, then, that, on getting distance is, I should say, impossible ; many of out of harbor, he advanced to the south-west, the floes are nearly covered with water, the and, baffled in his efforts, returned to Welling- mirage from which distorted objects in the most ton Channel ? The absence of any signals on extraordinary way. the shore either way must go far to negative the idea ; and it is more than doubtful

In the same way Pullen gives it as his whether the two months of an Arctic summer opinion that there would be no possibility of would suffice for such an exploration. Wel-reaching the North American coast across the lington Channel is intricate, and, for ships of heavy hummocky ice he saw to the north. the size of the Erebus and Terror, would re- We are constrained, indeed, to admit that the quire great caution. Penny states that

fact of no trace of Franklin having as yet

been found furnishes a strong presumption the fearful rate the tide runs (not less than six that he is no longer in existence ; but we say knots) through the sounds that divide the Chan- that that fact alone is not stronger against his nel renders it dangerous even for a boat, much having taken a south-west than a north-west more so a ship, unless clear of ice, which, from course, as the one might have led him into as the appearance of the ice here, will not be clear great peril as the other, and as completely this season.

have deprived him of the possibility of comThe experienced Abernethy says:

municating with any point where he might

hope for assistance. Wellington Strait is a dangerous navigable We are not ignorant of what may be urged passage, the ice flowing about with the tide. It on the other side ; that the most experienced would not be safe for a ship to go up there. Arctic navigators hug the northern shore ; Lieut. Aldrich conceived there must be o vast that - in spite of the evidence of Dr. Sutherdifficulty in navigating the Strait ;” and land and others as to the usually later breakCaptain Austin observes that the navigation ing up of the ice in Wellington Channel — of the Channel must be “ very critical, as all Franklin might have met with an impenetranarrow straits in icy seas are.We do not ble barrier of ice to the west, while the quote these statements as evidence that the entrance of that channel was open ;* and that Strait cannot be navigated, for Sir E. Belcher Parry in his first voyage in vain attempted to has settled that question ; but to prove how find an opening in the ice to the south. Our uulikely it is that the Channel could be argument is not that Franklin must have passed through rapidly. On the supposition taken any one particular course,

but only that Franklin went up it, how are we to that, so long as the space between 104' and account for the absence of cairns or flag- 1160 W. long is unexplored, it cannot be said staffs, which would show he had visited, or that Franklin has been fairly sought in the taken possession of, the newly-found land? direction he was ordered to pursue. – for no shores have been so minutely ex

The search was maintained by one vessel plored as these.

only in the following year. The Prince In our total ignorance of the geography of Albert, which returned home in 1850. after that region which Franklin was directed to her unsuccessful cruise, was refitted, and examine, it would be rash to speculate on sailed early in 1851, under command of Mr. the difficulties into which an opening to the William Kennedy, who has published a short south-west might lead. Before Lancaster and sensible narrative of his voyage. M. Sound was explored no one could have sup- Bellot, a lieutenant in the French pary, posed that it would open out so many intricate channels, or display that intermingling whether it was his opinion that the ice broke up

* Dr. Sutherland, when asked by Sir E. Parry of land and sea on either side north and sooner in the direction of

Cape Walker than at the south, which the skill of our best naviga- entrance of Wellington Channel, repliod, tors for the last thirty years has failed to two months sooner."

66 Yes;

joined as a volunteer, and his generous ardor house is as air-tight as an egg. Narratire, and lively spirits seem to have contributed 78, 79. greatly to the efficiency of the expedition. Kennedy wintered at Batty Bay, on the west

As respects their provision, they were side of Regent's Inlet. In his spring journey. Fury, which they found not only in the best

materially indebted to the old treasures of the of 1852 he showed what it was in the power of a really intrepid traveller to accomplish. preservation, but much superior in quality, Following the coast to the south, he found a

after thirty years of exposure to the weather, channel in Brentford Bay leading westward to some of our own stores and those supplied Traversing this channel he came again upon travelling they had a cup of hot tea night and

to the other Arctic expeditions." * While large island. On his right, to the north, morning a luxury they would not have the land appeared continuous. By Lieut exchanged for the mines of Ophir.” A gill Browne's examination of Peel's Sound (or

and a half of spirits of wine boiled a pint of Oinmaney Inlet) from Barrow's Strait, we had but one meal daily, and took ice with

water, When detained by bad weather they which would so far correspond with İlr. Ren- their biscuit and pemmican to suve fuel. On nedy's observation. As an open sea appeared and here stopped a week to recruit ; all suf

the 15th of May they reached Whaler Point, that it may be continued to the Victoria fering much from scurvy; At this early Strait of Rae ; in that case the narrow chan- period Regent's Inlet and Barrow's Strait nel of Brentford Bay would prove that at were free from ice as far as the eye could least one south-west passage existed. Con- reach. In a notice left at Whaler Point it tinuing his course nearly west, until he passed

was said “ Cape Walker was carefully ex100° west long., he turned to the north, amined, but bore no evidence whatever of its struck the sea at that point reached by Capt having been visited by Europeans.” Now, as Ommaney in exploring the bay which bears the large cairns, formed by the parties of his name, then turned to the east and to the Ommaney and Osborn the previous spring, north till he reached Cape Walker, returning could thus be overlooked, might not signals to his ship by the north shore of North Somo erected by Franklin have been equally undis. erset, having successfully performed a journey tinguishable amid the deep snow which enof eleven hundred miles, and been absent from veloped this bleak and rugged coast? · the ship for ninety-seven days! During the

By the 30th of May the travellers were back whole time they knew no other shelter than at Batty Bay, where all had gone on well : the snow-houses they threw up at each rest- but it was not until the 6th of August that ing-place.

the ship, by saving and blasting, could be In his modest narrative Mr. Kennedy de- got clear of the ice. On the 19th of August scribes the general order of his arrangements. Kennedy reached Beechey Island, where he His party, including M. Bellot and himself, had the satisfaction of finding the North consisted of six persons. Their luggage and Star engaged in sawing into winter-quarters. stores were borne on sleighs made after the The

expedition of Sir E. Belcher – consisting Indian fashion, five Esquimaux dogs very

of the two brigs and their attendant steamers materially assisting in their draught. With previously commanded by Austin, with the out the aid, indeed, of these much-enduring North Star as a depôt-ship — had left the animals so long a journey could scarcely have Thames on the 21st of April, and arrived at been performed ; and, as nothing came amiss Beechey Island on the 10th of August. The to them in the way of food, it being found season was remarkably open; Wellington that “ they throve wonderfully on old leather Channel and Barrow Strait were equally clear shoes and fag-ends of buffalo-robes," the of ice; on the 14th of August Sir E. Belcher sleighs were not much burdened by care for (with a ship and a steamer) stood up the their provision. With a little practice all Channel, and the following day Captain Kelhands became expert in the erection of snow- lett (with the other brig and steamer) sailed houses, which presented

in open water for Melville Island. From the

North Star Mr. Kennedy received despatches a dome-shaped structure, out of which you have for England. He would gladly have remained only to cut a small hole for a door, to find your- out another season, but, as his men were self within a very light, comfortable-looking berhive on a large scale, in which you can bid defiance to wind and weather. Any chinks between of the preserved meats, 10,570 lbs., in tin canis

* On a strict and careful survey, made last July, the blocks are filled up with loose snow with the ters, supplied to the Plover, they were found in hand from the outside ; as these are best de-a pulpy, decayed, and putrid state, totally unfit. tected from within, a man is usually sent in to for men's food." The whole were thrown into the drive a thin rod through the spot where he dis- sea, as a nuisance. It is much to be feared that covers a chink, which is immediately plastered Franklin's preserved meats may have been of no over by some one from without, till the whole better quality.

bent on returning, he was compelled to I will be provisioned for four years. Mr. Kenrelinquish his design, and bring his ship nedy hopes he shall be able to pass the strait home.

this year, and take up a position for the A fortnight after his departure, Captain winter somewhere near Point Barrow, whence Inglefield, in the Isabel screw-steamer, com- in the winter and spring he might explore to municated with the North Star. The Isabel the north and east, in the direction of Melhad been purchased by Lady Franklin, with ville Island and Banks' Land. Captain Ingleassistance from the Geographical Society and field, in the Phoenix steam-sloop, will start others. In her Captain Inglefield quitted this spring for Beechey Island, accompanied England on the 6th of July last ; coasted the by a store-ship containing an ample supply northern shores of Baffin's Bay ; advanced of provisions. A new expedition is also, we much further up Whale Sound than any pre- observe, to be fitted out by the beneficent Mr. vious navigator, finding as he proceeded an Grinnell, of New York. immense expanse of open water; ran a con The present state of the search then is siderable distance up Smith's Sound and this : -Sir E. Belcher is engaged in a survey Jones' Sound without discovering any op- of Wellington, while Captain Kellett is probposing land; and then made for Beechey ably safely anchored in Winter Harbor, the old Island, which he reached on the 7th of Sep- quarters of Parry. Each has a well-stored tember. It is the opinion of this skilful ob- ship with an attendant steamer ; while the server that all the three great sounds at the North Star, within reach no doubt of parties head of Baffin's Bay are channels leading into from either vessel, remains in Franklin's harthe Polar Ocean. It is to be regretted that, borage at Beechey Island. On the Pacific in so favorable à season, he had not the side, the Plover, we may presume, is adopportunity of determining this question, vanced to Point Barrow. We have no intelwith regard to one of them at least. But, on ligence of M'Clure since, under a press of the whole, considering the limited time at his canvas, he stood for the pack-ice off Icy Cape, disposal — his whole voyage lasting but four in August, 1850 ; nor from Collinson since he months - he must be allowed to have exerted passed Behring's Strait in July of the followhimself very laudably.

ing year. Our consul at Panama indeed The last parliamentary paper prints the in- writes that Collinson had been spoken hy telligence received from Behring's Strait to whalers, but, without details, we know not the end of August, 1852. Cominander Ma- what credit is to be attached to the report. guire, who was sent out to relieve Captain M'Clure supposed he should be able to reach Moore in the Plover, arrived at Port Clarence England by way of Barrow's Strait some tiine on the 30th of June. The crew, with the in this year, either by navigating his vessel exception of some frost-bites, were well, and through the unknown sea which stretches had behaved admirably. Constant intercourse north of the American continent, or by had been kept up with the natives, but no quitting his ship and making for Melville tidings had been heard as to any subject of Island, or some point nearer home. Stirring anxiety. The Plover, under her new com- tidings of some kind will most likely reach mander, put to sea on the 12th of July, and us in the course of a few months. The search, arrived at Icy Cape on the 19th, whence so long and so ardently prosecuted, continues Maguire proceeded in a boat to Point Barrow not only to interest the scientific and enterpristo take soundings for anchorage. In his lasting, but to carry with it the sympathies of the despatch, 20th of August, he intimates his whole nation. The public mind is made up expectation that he shall be able to place the that the fate of the missing ships shall be Plover in winter-quarters there about the determined, if human energy can determine beginning of September. He much advises it - and the resolve is as wise as generous. that a steamer should be sent out to open a To our navy, under God, we owe our greatcommunication with him ; and, considering ness and safety; and, in sending forth our how strongly a vessel of this kind has been gallant seamen on hazardous enterprises, we recommended for the service by Admiral are bound by every possible obligation to inBeaufort and other high authorities, we are spire them with a full confidence that they quite at a loss to understand why one was not are under the eye and guardianship of their sent out in place of the Rattlesnake recently country, and that its resources will be exerted despatched.

to the utmost in their behalf. The pecuniary Mr. Kennedy is about to depart in the Isa- cost of the search is not to be regarded in bel for Behring's Sea. Lady Franklin, aided comparison with its object ; and it is better by 10001. subscribed by some generous for a thousand lives to be perilled in the disfriends in Van Diemen's Land, who grate-charge of duty than for one to be sacrificed fully remember Sir John's rule, will again be through neglect. at the charge of the expedition. The Isabel

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