Stanley, correspondence

Scope and Content

  • MS 248/476;D Letter to John Richardson, 12 July 1845 [HMS Erebus, Whalefish Island giving report on health of Sir John Franklin] handwritten copy

Administrative / Biographical History

The British Naval Northwest Passage Expedition, 1845-1848 (leader Sir John Franklin) was to search for a Northwest Passage in the unexplored region southwest of Barrow Strait. Sailing from London in May 1845 HMS Erebus (Franklin) and HMS Terror (Crozier) were last seen heading for Lancaster Sound by two whalers in northern Baffin Bay in late July 1845. After that, the expedition disappeared and Europeans never again saw its members alive. During the course of many search expeditions the main facts regarding the route taken and final fate of the expedition were established.

By discovering a channel of communication between known points in Barrow Strait and on the north coast, Franklin's men had effectively discovered the Northwest Passage.

Sir John Richardson had served with Franklin during his earlier overland Arctic expeditions.

Alternative Form Available

This is a copy

Related Material

The Institute holds several archival collections containing material relating to this expedition see SPRI collections GB 015 Sir John Franklin, GB 015 Geoffrey Callender, GB 015 John Colston, GB 015 Edward Couch, GB 015 Sophia Cracroft, GB 015 Francis Crozier, GB 015 Richard Cyriax, GB 015 Earl of Auckland, GB 015 John Fitzjames, GB 015 Jane Franklin, GB 015 Graham Gore, GB 015 John Gregory, GB 015 Edward Griffiths, GB 015 Alexander McDonald and GB 015 Charles Osmer

The Institute also holds an extensive archival collection for Sir John Richardson