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The discovery of the North Pole

Matthew Henson’s first magazine article was published in 1910 by a magazine called The World’s Work. It includes photos Henson took with his own camera during the 1909 expedition. Here is a restored copy in JPEG format for you to enjoy.

“No man in the expedition, except Peary himself, had as much Arctic experience as Matthew Henson. The credit of the discovery of the Pole is based on the trust these two brave men had in each other, cooperation, and dedication to a common cause.”

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Merrill Park Elementary School
5th grade class draws Matt’s trip to the North Pole with Peary. Russell R. wrote a narrative.

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The discovery of the North Pole is one of the noblest stories in the history of exploration. It is a story of the battle of two invincible Americans against the terrible elements of the Arctic; a battle which lasted eighteen years and left one of the Americans, a steel-willed man of grit, a cripple for life. It is a human story filled with tragic suffering, pathos and humiliation. And it is noble, because these two Americans, who made the last great discovery in the Northern Hemisphere, were a white man and a Negro.”

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“When Peary and Matthew Henson, America’s greatest Negro explorer, went to Greenland in 1891, the quest for the North Pole was just taking form in Peary’s mind. It grew into a determined challenge between these men and the elements in the subsequent expedition and the many that followed, until eighteen years later, on the seventh expedition, Peary, a tired man of fifty-three, crippled by the amputation of his toes ten years previously, and Henson, the great Negro, stood side by side at the apex of the earth.”

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Bradley Robinson, 1947