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  • Title
    Frank Hurley collection of diaries, 10 Nov. 1912 - 13 Aug. 1918, together with related papers, ca. 1920, miscellaneous material, 1909-ca. 1925, and photographs, 1914-1917
  • Creator
  • Level of description
  • Date

    1909-ca. 1925
  • Type of material
  • Reference code
  • Physical Description
    0.5 metres of textual material (5 boxes)

    James Francis Hurley, photographer, Antarctic explorer and author, was born in Sydney, N.S.W., on 15 Oct., 1885. In 1911, he became a member of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914, and was appointed to the staff of the Main Base Party as the official photographer. This party, consisting of 18 men, was led by Sir Douglas Mawson. They were landed on the Adelie Land coast, Antarctica, by the S.Y. Aurora on 8 Jan., 1912. From 10 Nov., 1912, to 10 Jan., 1913, Hurley accompanied Edward Frederick Robert Bage and Eric Norman Webb on the Southern Sledge journey. He remained at the Main Base, Adelie Land, until the 8 Feb., 1913, when the majority of the party was relieved by the S.Y. Aurora. In Oct., 1914, Hurley joined Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, 1914-1917; the aim of which was to cross the Antarctic continent via the South Pole. On 5 Nov., 1914, the Expedition party arrived at the remote whaling station of Grytviken, South Georgia, Atlantic Ocean, on board the Endurance. On 5 Dec., 1914, the Endurance departed from South Georgia for the Weddell Sea, Antarctica. During Jan. and Feb. of 1915, the Endurance became trapped in the ice. On 27 Oct., 1915, she was crushed. Consequently, the Expedition party was forced to camp on the ice floe which drifted towards Elephant Island in the South Shetland Islands. In three life boats from the Endurance the party was able to reach Elephant Island on 15 April 1916. One of the boats, named the James Caird, was strengthened, and Shackleton, together with five companions, sailed 800 miles across stormy seas to South Georgia to effect a rescue. The remainder of the party on Elephant Island lived in a structure of two upturned boats on rock walls and fastened together with canvas. These quarters, which housed in cramp conditions 22 men, were named the snuggery. They were rescued by the Chilean trawler Yelcho on the 30 Aug., 1916. Hurley arrived in London on 15 Nov., 1916, and immediately handed over his film record to Ernest Perris, the Expedition's agent in London. Because of gaps in the film, necessitated by the need to abandon many of the plates after the Endurance was crushed, Hurley volunteered to return to South Georgia to photograph suitable animal footage. Hurley left Glasgow, Scotland, on board the Pentaur on 15 Feb., 1917, arriving in South Georgia on 25 Mar., 1917. He returned to London in June, 1917, shortly after which he was appointed as official photographer to the Australian Imperial Force. He served in France and Palestine. Hurley died on the 16 Jan., 1962
  • Scope and Content
    SERIES 01
    Sledging diary, 10 Nov. 1912 - 10 Jan. 1913, kept while a member of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914, together with an edited typescript transcript.
    (MLMSS 389/1, Items 1-2: CY 1423 Diary, frames 1-148; Transcript, frames 149-190)

    SERIES 02
    Diaries, 5 Nov. 1914 - 25 Apr. 1917, kept while a member of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, 1914-1917, together with an edited typescript transcript.
    (MLMSS 389/2, Items 1-7: Diaries: CY 1423, frames 192-745; MLMSS 389/3-4: Transcripts: CY 3001, frames 1-535)

    SERIES 03
    Diaries, 21 Aug. 1917 – 13 Aug. 1918, kept while official photographer to the Australian Imperial Force, together with typescript transcripts and related papers, c. 1920.
    (MLMSS 389/5, Items 1-5: CY 3134, frames 1-470; Transcript is at frames 228-453)

    SERIES 04
    Miscellaneous material, 1909 – c.1915
    Includes photocopies of articles written by James Francis Hurley published in 'The Australian Photo-Review', 22 Mar. 1909 – 22 Dec. 1910, and a prospectus for the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914, scientific reports, c.1925.
    (MLMSS 389/6, Items 1-3)

    SERIES 05
    Shackleton Expedition photographs / Frank Hurley, 1914-1917
    (PXA 715)
  • General note

    This collection includes further pictorial material. See D 19 - D31 for war photographs and D 156 - D 162/10 for Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914, photographs.
  • Subject

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