Fritz Heim collection

Scope and Content

The collection comprises of correspondence with fellow Antarctic explorer William Speirs Bruce (leader of the Scottish National Antarctic Expedition, 1902-1904) relating to the German South Polar Expedition, 1911-1912 (leader Wilhelm Filchner).

Administrative / Biographical History

Fritz Heim joined the German South Polar Expedition, 1911-1912 (leader Wilhelm Filchner), as geologist. Filchner planned to attempt the first crossing of Antarctica. With a strong scientific team on board, the expedition ship Deutschland left Bremerhaven on 11 May 1911, arriving in South Georgia in October and making a brief visit to the South Sandwich Islands. Heading south towards the Weddell Sea in December, the ship sailed southward off Coats Land and in January 1912, Filchner saw land, which he named Prinzregent Luitpold Land [Luitpold Coast]. Continuing westward, they discovered the Filchner Ice Shelf where an unsuccessful attempt was made to establish a station. Deutschland was beset and drifted in pack ice for nine months until freed in November 1912. Returning to South Georgia in December, the expedition headed back to Germany.


The correspondence is arranged chronologically.

Access Information

By appointment.

Some materials deposited at the Institute are NOT owned by the Institute. In such cases the archivist will advise about any requirements imposed by the owner. These may include seeking permission to read, extended closure, or other specific conditions.


Anyone wishing to consult material should ensure they note the entire MS reference and the name of the originator.

The term holograph is used when the item is wholly in the handwriting of the author. The term autograph is used when the author has signed the item.

Descriptions compiled by N. Boneham, Assistant Archivist with assistance from R. Stancombe and reference to SPRI Library Antarctic Biographies Card Index and Encyclopaedia of Antarctica and the Southern Oceans ed. Bernard Stonehouse, John Wiley & Sons Chichester, (2002) ISBN 0471986658 SPRI Library (7) and Robert Keith Headland Antarctic Chronology, unpublished corrected revision of Chronological list of Antarctic expeditions and related historical events, (1 December 2001) Cambridge University Press (1989) ISBN 0521309034

Other Finding Aids

Clive Holland Manuscripts in the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, England - a catalogue, Garland Publishing New York and London (1982) ISBN 0824093941.

Additional finding aids are available at the Institute.

Conditions Governing Use

Copying material by photography, electrostat, or scanning device by readers is prohibited. The Institute may be able to provide copies of some documents on request for lodgement in publicly available repositories. This is subject to conservation requirements, copyright law, and payment of fees.

Copyright restrictions apply to most material. The copyright may lie outside the Institute and, if so, it is necessary for the reader to seek appropriate permission to consult, copy, or publish any such material. (The Institute does not seek this permission on behalf of readers). Written permission to publish material subject to the Institute's copyright must be obtained from the Director. Details of conditions and fees may be had from the Archivist.


Further accessions possible.

Personal Names