Cover of: Across the Top of the World | James P. Delgado

Across the Top of the World

The Quest for the Northwest Passage

Published by Checkmark Books in New York, NY .
Written in English.

About the Book

Like George Mallory, Sir John Franklin died at an icy extreme of the globe. The cumulative efforts of those who followed Franklin (1786-1847) into the Arctic in order to discover what became of him eventually led to the charting of the Northwest Passage, a sea route from the Atlantic to the Pacific via the coast of North America. The history of the European quest for the Passage is full of dramatic stories of men at their best and worst in harsh conditions. Delgado's workmanlike history stretches from Martin Frobisher's voyages (1576-1578) through the doomed expedition of Franklin (1845-1847) to Norwegian Roald Amundsen's successful voyage through the Passage in 1906. The saga is filled with cannibalism, lack of foresight, heroism, resourcefulness, greed and the stiff upper lips of 19th-century British naval officers weathering the rigors of Arctic winters. Delgado, executive director of the Vancouver Maritime Museum, gives blow-by-blow accounts of all the major voyages, noting those commanders, such as William Parry (1790-1855), who exhibited good judgment and a respect for the Arctic natives and those who, like Frobisher, confronted both the landscape and its inhabitants with imperial contempt. Delgado clearly did thorough research in an effort to place as many pertinent facts as possible between two covers. The result is an account of the European encounter with the Arctic that is stronger on detail than on drama. But the book is a spectacular reference. Readers who wish to read further about the Arctic would do well to have Delgado's book handy as they read Parry's journals or Barry Lopez's beautiful Arctic Dreams. 80 full-color photos; 100 b&w illus.; 6 maps; bibliography; index.

Edition Notes

Includes bibliographical references (p. 212-221) and index.


Dewey Decimal Class
Library of Congress
G640 .D45 1999

The Physical Object

xii, 228 p. :
Number of pages
11.5 x 8 x .5 inches
2.8 grams

ID Numbers

Open Library
Internet Archive
LC Control Number
Library Thing

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December 16, 2018 Edited by Lisa Added new cover
December 16, 2018 Edited by Lisa Update covers
August 12, 2018 Edited by mountainaxe Edited without comment.
May 1, 2012 Edited by ImportBot import new book
April 1, 2008 Created by an anonymous user Initial record created, from Scriblio MARC record.