Books from the Polar Regions from Aquila Books
Here is a most unusual bibliophilic object from the Antarctic, a "survivor" of Scott's expedition. Item 69 is a sledge from Scott's ill-fated journey, brought back by Charles S. Wright. Wright was a Canadian physicist who participated in the relief party. He was the first to spot the top of the tent in which Scott died. Wright brought back one of the sledges that had been used by Scott's party (though not one taken on his final successful, but fatal, assault on the Pole). He then cut the thing in half and turned it into a pair of bookcases! As you can see from the image (click the thumbnail image left), sledges, with the addition of a few shelves, make excellent bookcases. $15,000.
Item 21 is an archive of 20 documents from the Dominion Reindeer Company, dated from 1929-1931. This was a Vancouver, B.C., based company that maintained a herd of reindeer in Alaska. We aren't sure what they did with the reindeer, but whatever it was, they believed it to be a good business. One letter states, "The present crash of the New York Stock Exchange has not affected the price of Reindeer shares one penny..." Reindeer, Inc., may have survived the crash of 1929, but something else must have gotten them as I can find no other information about the company. $475.
This is one of those obscure, tragic stories, a son kept alive by his family through the publication of a book. Item 36 is Michael's Arctic Diary May-July 1957. Michael Holland was one of four people headed by glaciologist and author Borge Fristrup of Copenhagen University who went exploring in Greenland that year. Evidently, Holland and another slipped into a crevasse and died of exposure. His diary was published by the family in 1962. This copy includes a letter from an English bookseller containing a brief biography of Holland. $125.
Aquila Books may be reached at 403-282-5832 or Aquila@Aquilabooks.com. The wesbite is www.aquilabooks.com.