Belgrave Ninnis collection

Scope and Content

The collection comprises of material relating to the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914 (leader Douglas Mawson) and correspondence by Ninnis to H E Meade

Administrative / Biographical History

Belgrave Edward Sutton Ninnis was born in 1887 in London, son of Dr Belgrave Ninnis who served as surgeon on the British Arctic Expedition, 1875-1876 (leader George Strong Nares). In 1908, he was commissioned in the Royal Fusiliers, advancing to lieutenant in 1912. He joined the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914 (leader Douglas Mawson) and was in charge of the Greenland dogs at the Adelie Land base. He died on 14 December 1912 when he fell into a crevasse on a sledge journey across King George V Land accompanied by Mawson and Xavier Mertz.


The collection is split into two sub-fonds comprising of expedition material and correspondence respectively

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 British polar exploration and research a historical and medallic record with biographies 1818-1999 by Lieutenant Colonel Neville W Poulsom and Rear Admiral John A L Myres, Savannah Publications London (2000) SPRI Library Shelf 737.2 and This everlasting silence. The love letters of Paquita Delprat and Douglas Mawson 1911-1914, edited by Nancy Robinson Flannery, Melbourne University Press Melbourne (2000) SPRI Library Shelf 92[Mawson] and Antarctic Chronology, unpublished corrected revision of Chronological list of Antarctic expeditions and related historical events by Robert Keith Headland (1 December 2001) Cambridge University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