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Scott's Forgotten Surgeon: Dr. Reginald Koettlitz, Polar Explorer [Paperback]

Aubrey A. Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Price: 18.44 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

14 Nov 2011
'...In this year celebrating the centenary of the conquering of the South Pole - it is more than fitting to have one of the unregarded figures of Antarctic history brought into the limelight of remembrance'. Extract from Introduction by Dr. Ross D.E. MacPhee, American Museum of Natural History As senior surgeon on board Discovery, Dr. Reginald Koettlitz played a vital role in the heroic period of polar exploration when Nansen, Amundsen, Shackleton and Scott dominated the headlines. He was awarded a medal by the Royal Geographical Society for his role in the Discovery Expedition, 1901-04. During the earlier successful three-year Jackson-Harmsworth Expedition to Franz Josef Land, Koettlitz fine-tuned his measures to prevent scurvy, became an experienced ski runner, dog and pony handler and expert in polar survival. These skills were available when Koettlitz was appointed senior surgeon on the Discovery Expedition led by Scott, but due to personal reasons and the inability to acknowledge Koettlitz's polar experience, both Scott's expeditions were beset by major life-threatening issues that Koettlitz had faced and resolved on Franz Josef Land. On the ill-fated Terra Nova Expedition Scott and his four companions died on their failed attempt to be the first to reach the South Pole. In addition, Koettlitz travelled across north-east Africa from Berbera to Cairo on foot, mule and camel, crossing the Blue Nile to Khartoum shortly after the Battle of Omdurman. Before leaving for South Africa he assisted Shackleton in planning the Nimrod Expedition which almost resulted in the South Pole being reached. This well-researched account is enriched with previously unseen archive material such as correspondence with Nansen and photographs relating to polar history during the period 1890-1916.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Whittles Publishing (14 Nov 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849950385
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849950381
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 17.1 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 661,076 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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' - this is a remarkable book, extremely well researched and wholly enlightening. - This thorough appraisal of a most gifted individual is well worth the price - ' The James Caird Society Newsletter

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful read and a Wonderful man 14 Jan 2012
This book is a must for anyone wishing to know more about polar exploration. Dr KOETTLITZ was shabbily treated by polar (experts!) This book puts it right, If Scott had followed this mans advice,he and his men would have returned safely home.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Scott's Forgotten Surgeon. 17 April 2012
I enjoyed this book immensely and now find myself fascinated by all things Polar. This is a real insight into the planning, dangers and difficulties of such expeditions, as are the details of food rations and clothing, '27 gallons of brandy and whisky' under 'Medical Comforts'!!. The level of scientific exploration undertaken is of great interest as is the huge experience gained by Koettlitz in Franz Josef Land and on the Discovery which sadly and bafflingly were not noted on Scott's return journey to the South Pole. Despite the lack of recognition for Koettlitz scientific and polar capabilities and skill, he remained a man of great dignity and duty.
An enjoyable and informative book, warmly told.(Despite the icy conditions)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Polar Adventures 3 Mar 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What a wonderful book - so very interesting, well written and easy to read, but full of information.
It is a catalogue of quite amazing adventures in the North and South Pole regions and also across Africa to the Blue Nile.
The grit and determination of these early explorers comes through loud and clear. The descriptions of the areas and the geology and people (in the case of Africa) are vividly described.
I recommend this book to everybody.
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Amazon.com: 1.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
1.0 out of 5 stars Cape Disappointment 26 Jan 2013
By Huwddu - Published on Amazon.com
This is a carefully researched book with some new information. However it comes across as a poorly written, repetitive anti Scott polemic complete with at least one spelling mistake. I hold no candle for RFS, but the crudely phrased anti Scott diatribes so widespread through the book are wearisome. More tedious still are frequent use of phrases like "as mentioned above" which have no place in a middle school term paper let alone a published book. A competent editor and a literate proof reader could have produced a worthy and readable book - but it would probably be 90 pages rather than 209 for this book. Oh yes; how should we spell "training" see page 152. Alas - spell checker where art though?
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