The Canadian Arctic Expedition

The white leaders of the 1913–18 foray into the Arctic got the glory but it was the Inuit who made it all possible.

Written by Canada’s History

Posted October 27, 2015

The Canadian Arctic Expedition of 1913–18 was, in its time, the largest Arctic expedition ever mounted by the Canadian government. It comprised more than a hundred people, including scientists, sailors, a surgeon, a photographer, and dozens of Inuit hunters, dogsled drivers, and seamstresses.

Black and white photograph
The southern party, headed by Dr. R.M. Anderson, undertook geographic and scientific surveys of the Arctic coast, while the northern party, under Vilhjalmur Stefansson, searched for undiscovered land in the Beaufort Sea.

For more about the CAE, go to the Virtual Museum of Canada and view Northern People, Northern Knowledge: The Story of the Canadian Arctic Expedition 1913–1918, an online exhibit created by the Canadian Museum of History and Arctic historian David Gray.

And, read “Forgetten Explorers,” by Kate Jaimet in the December-January 2016 issue of Canada’s History magazine. 


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