Oates, correspondence

Scope and Content

  • MS559/166/1-2;D Letters (2) to Apsley Cherry-Garrard, 14 and 27 August 1918 [Regarding photograph of the cross and cairn erected where it is thought Oates died] 2 leaves, holograph
  • MS 100/88;D Letter to Hugh Robert Mill, 15 January 1930 [Regarding Stephen Gwynn biography on Scott] 2 leaves, holograph
  • MS 356/79/1-8;D Letters (8) to Robert Neal Rudmose Brown, 12 March 1924 to 26 March 1928 [Regarding her son and including text of a poem on him] 12 leaves, holograph

Correspondence to Caroline Oates:

  • MS 1016/391-419;D Letters (29) received by Mrs Oates on the death of her son, 1913-1914 [Miscellaneous correspondents many from Inniskilling Dragoons]

Administrative / Biographical History

The correspondence relates entirely to her son Lawrence Edward Grace Oates and the British Antarctic Expedition, 1910-1913 (leader Robert Falcon Scott) Lawrence was a member of the pole party with Scott, Henry Bowers, Edgar Evans and Edward Wilson he reached the South Pole on 17 January 1912. On the return journey, the weakened party faced exceptionally unfavourable weather and sledging conditions, and Oates suffered gravely from frostbite. On 16 or 17 March 1912, laid up in a blizzard and concerned that he was reducing his companions' chances of survival, he ended his life by leaving the tent, his famous last words being 'I am just going out. I may be some time.'



Related Material

The Institute holds over a hundred archival collections containing material relating to this expedition, including one for her son Lawrence, see SPRI collection GB 015 British Antarctic Expedition, 1910-1913 for more information.