Browse "Explorers"

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Alejandro Malaspina

Alejandro Malaspina, explorer (b at Mulazzo, Italy 5 Nov 1754; d at Pontremoli, Italy 9 Apr 1810). Born to an illustrious but impoverished family, Malaspina entered the Spanish naval service. In 1784 he sailed around the world in the frigate Astrea.

Article

Roald Amundsen

   Roald Amundsen, arctic explorer (b at Sarpsborg, Norway 16 July 1872; d between Norway and Spitsbergen 18 June 1928). Amundsen went to sea as a young man. Determined to navigate the NORTHWEST PASSAGE, he purchased the Gjoa, readied it for arctic waters and embarked in 1903.

Editorial

Roald Amundsen Crosses the Northwest Passage

The great Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen clung grimly to the tiller of his little ship Gjøa. Adrift in the remote waters of Simpson Strait, the Gjøa had just spent two agonizing weeks in August 1905 avoiding the death grip of the polar ice. Over and over the exhausted crew begged Amundsen to turn back. Haggard and ill, he had not eaten for days and he dared not sleep. He knew that his dream of sailing across the top of the world was within his grasp.

Article

Anthony Henday

Henday, Anthony, explorer (probably b on the Isle of Wight, Eng; fl 1750-62). Henday travelled farther into western Canada than any white person had before him, and his journal contains important glimpses of how the indigenous population lived at that time.

Article

Arthur Jackman

Arthur Jackman, mariner, nicknamed "Viking Arthur" (b at Renews, Nfld 1843; d at St John's 31 Jan 1907). He commanded his first sealing steamer, Hawk, to the ice fields in 1872. His other vessels, in later years, included Aurora, Falcon, Terra Nova and Eagle.

Article

William Baffin

William Baffin, explorer (probably born in London, England, ca. 1584; died 23 January 1621 or 1622 in the Persian Gulf).

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Jean-Baptiste Gaultier de La Vérendrye

Jean-Baptiste Gaultier de La Vérendrye, fur trader, explorer, son of Pierre Gaultier de Varennes et de La Vérendrye (born 3 September 1713 on Île Dupas, Quebec; died 6 June 1736 at Lake of the Woods.) In 1731, Jean-Baptiste was a member of the first group to head west under his father's command. In autumn of 1731 he completed the building of Fort Saint-Pierre at Rainy Lake. His role in the construction of Fort Maurepas in 1734 establishes him one of the founders of present-day Manitoba (see also Francophones of Manitoba .)

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Robert Chevalier Beauchêne

Robert Chevalier Beauchêne, dit, adventurer, privateer (b at Pointe-aux-Trembles [Montréal] 23 Apr 1686; d at Tours, France Dec 1731). As a young man, Beauchêne served as a VOYAGEUR and on raiding expeditions against the English colonies. In 1707 he joined an Acadian privateer.

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John Bell

John Bell, fur trader, explorer (b on the Isle of Mull, Scot 1799; d at Saugeen, Ont 24 June 1868). John Bell joined the North West Company as a clerk in 1818.

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Robert Bell

Robert Bell, geologist, explorer (b at Toronto 3 June 1841; d at Rathwell, Man 17 June 1917). In 1857 Bell was junior assistant to the GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF CANADA.

Article

Vitus Jonassen Bering

Vitus Jonassen Bering, explorer (b at Horsens, Denmark 1681; d on Bering Island 8 Dec 1741). An officer in the Russian navy, Bering was appointed in 1725 by Peter the Great to explore the Siberian coast.

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Bjarni Herjolfsson

Bjarni Herjolfsson, Norse explorer (dates of birth and death unknown; lived in the 10th century). Herjolfsson was likely the first European to sight the east coast of North America. While sailing from Iceland to Greenland in 986 CE, Herjolfsson sighted lands that were later determined to be Baffin Island, Labrador and Newfoundland. Although Herjolfsson never set foot in North America, Leif Ericsson later retraced his voyage, establishing a settlement at what he called Vinland.

Article

Samuel Black

Samuel Black, fur trader, explorer (b at Pitsligo, Scot 3 May 1780; d at Kamloops, New Caledonia [BC] 8 Feb 1841). He joined the XY Co, which was absorbed by the NORTH WEST CO in 1804.