Captain Scott. ('The Strand' magazine, August 1913)
'This is perhaps the most characteristic portrait of Captain Scott, showing him as he actually appeared on his last journey.'
'The Strand' magazine's photo of Captain Robert Falcon Scott was taken by Herbert Ponting, photographer for the British Antarctic Expedition of 1910-1913.
It shows Scott before he led a small team on the quest to reach the South Pole.
Hauling their equipment and supplies on sledges, the five-man party arrived at the pole on 17 January 1912. They found the pole already claimed and the Norwegian flag flying.
With morale dented, and battling the Antarctic's hostile environment and the harshness of polar winter, they began the hazardous journey back to the expedition ship. They were never to arrive.
Scott was the last of the pole party to die of cold and hunger, probably on 29 March 1912 — only 11 miles from a supply depot.
His diary recorded his final words, which told of the 'hardiness, endurance and courage' of his companions, and included a 'message to the public' to 'look after our people'.
[NLS shelfmark: GB.C.119]
This image appeared in our display on 'Scott's last expedition', which ran from 12 January to 25 March 2012.