London: Chatto and Windus, 1938. Very Good in Very Good dust-jacket First Edition, 1st Printing. [10x7.75in]; xv, , 295 pp., , frontispiece image of Penola's deck, 80 plates of 121 sepia toned images, 4 color maps (3 folding), 4 maps and 3 diagrams in text, appendices and index; Original green cloth covers, red paper spine label with gilt lettered, top and fore edges trimmed, bottom edge untrimmed; Sepia toned dust jacket with white and black lettering on front and spine, image of ice filled bay and glacier covered mountains; Minor shelf wear to covers edges and corners, several dents along top back edge and area of darkening to lower back cover, top edges and text soiled, minor foxing spots along all text edges, old prior owner ink signature on front end paper, Steve Fossett bookplate on paste down front end paper; Dust jacket aged toned, soiled edges and spots with surface rubbing on joint edges, several small scrapes on back, several small chips and closed tears along edges and corners, minor crease lines. Overall a very good copy in a rare dust jacket. [Headland 1776, Conrad p.302, Spence 1018]. Item #13592
John Riddoch Rymill (1905-1968) was an Australian polar explorer and farmer. As a young boy, he became fascinated by polar literature and set his course to be an explorer. He gained experience in surveying, navigation and flying, and he studied polar travel at the Scott Polar Research Institute under Professor Frank Debenham. He was selected by H. Gino Watkins as a pilot/surveyor for the British Air Route Expedition to Greenland (1930-31). In 1932-33, Watkins then took Rymill as his second on a four man Greenland sledging expedition where Watkins died drowning. Rymill decided to continue Watkin's desire to explore the Antarctic and organized the British Graham Land Expedition (1934-37).
This was a small 10 man expedition that involved two base camps, air and sledging surveys and support ship, Penal manned by amateurs. From Conrad, "Working in a previously unexplored area of Antarctica, this expedition discovered Graham Land was part of the continent and not an archipelago as reported by Wilkins and Ellsworth." They sledged 1,300 miles and made a number of flights and discovered the King George VI Sound as well as contributed to the scientific program including meteorology, geology, glaciology and biology.
Steve Fossett (1944-2007) was a successful commodities trader and an adventurer that set world records in balloons, sailboats, gliders and unique powered aircraft. In the 1980's Fossett began developing a library collection of over 2,000 books on adventure and exploration. His collection included significant and authoritative accounts of aeronautics, polar, Asia, Australasia, circumnavigation's, mountaineering and others. In 2007, Fossett disappeared on a solo flight in a light aircraft over the eastern Sierra Mountains along the California and Nevada border. After an extensive search, the wreckage was found by hikers a year later along the rugged Mt. Ritter range in the Ansel Adams Wilderness in Madera County, about 10 miles east of Yosemite National Park.