Mail Bag

This page is reserved for interesting letters (yes, people still do write letters!) and emails that Paul Dalrymple, other Members and the Webmaster receive from Members and friends of the Society. They may be very recent or decades old.

There is also the Philatelic Corner, where envelopes, first-day covers and stamps related to the Antarctic and collected by members are displayed.

 

In Defense of Bernt Balchen

Lisle Rose has recently published a biography of Admiral Richard E. Byrd that is very critical of Byrd's colleague and pilot of his 1929 flight over the South Pole, the late Bernt Balchen. This has so offended Balchen's family that they wrote this letter to the publisher. It is signed by Balchen's children, Bernt Balchen, Jr. and Lauritz Balchen, and includes additional comments by Balchen's widow, Mrs. Bess Urbahn. Click Here to view the letter. 

 

Byrd Expeditions

These are letters written by members of Admiral Richard Byrd's Antarctic Expeditions, BAE I from 1928-30 and BAE II from 1933-35. Their correspondence with Paul Dalrymple from 1979 to 1987 provide interesting glimpses into those historic expeditions and particularly Admiral Byrd himself. Henry Harrison was the meteorologist on BAE I. John Dyer was a physicist and the radio operator on BAE II. Dr. Al Lindsey was a close friend of Paul Siple as a member of BAE II who - like Siple - went on to a distinguished scientific career.

Harrison Letter of March 8, 1979

Harrison Letter of November 25, 1979

Harrison Letter of January 16, 1980

Harrison Letter of January 30, 1980

Harrison Letter of May 31, 1980

Harrison Letter of January 4, 1981 with Pete Demas Story

Dyer Letter of March 12, (?)

Lindsey Letter of December 19, 1987

 

Antarctic Associates of Sir Edmund Hillary

The February, 2008 issue of the Antarctican Society Newsletter focused on Antarcticans that were friends and colleagues of Sir Edmund Hillary. The letters from Murray Ellis and Peter Mulgrew discuss their times with Hillary, particularly his controversial role in the Trans-Antarctic Expedition of Sir Vivian Fuchs.

The letter from Peter Mulgrew is especially poignant because it was written only months before his fatal trip aboard the New Zealand DC-10 tourist flight that crashed into Mount Erebus in November, 1979. Mulgrew served as an Antarctic expert on that flight, a role that was originally scheduled for Edmund Hillary. Sir Edmund had a conflict and offered the position to Peter Mulgrew.

Murray Ellis Letter of June 6, 1979

Murray Ellis Letter of September 4, 1979

Peter Mulgrew Letter of July 9, 1979
 

Dr. Schullinger Letter

Dr. Schullinger Letter January 8, 2008