Cover image for Beyond the barrier : the story of Byrd's first expedition to Antarctica
Title:
Beyond the barrier : the story of Byrd's first expedition to Antarctica
Author:
Rodgers, Eugene.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Annapolis, Md. : Naval Institute Press, [1990]

©1990
Physical Description:
xiv, 354 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes bibliographical references (p. 333-338) and index.
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780870210228
Format :
Book

Available:*

Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library G850 1928.B95 R63 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Central Library G850 1928.B95 R63 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Summary

Summary

Using Byrd's private papers, this study provides an honest and objective account of the 1929 expedition.


Reviews 4

Booklist Review

This specialized but outstanding volume tells the story of Admiral Richard E. Byrd's first ~antarctic expedition in the late 1920s. The text makes clear that Byrd was a major antarctic pioneer and a brave man but also abrasive, nearly an alcoholic, and often less than truthful about his own achievements. This is both a major addition to the history of American polar exploration and proof that a "revisionist" biography can still be done to the highest standards of scholarship and readability. For larger history collections. Notes, bibliography; index. ~--Roland Green


Library Journal Review

The ``plaster saint'' image of American polar explorer Richard E. Byrd, one of the great icons of the hero-worshipping 1920s, has been chipped away at in such books as Finn Ronne's Antarctica, My Destiny ( LJ 12/15/79) and David Roberts's Great Exploration Hoaxes (LJ 11/1/82). Now it has been shattered by free-lance author and Antarctica veteran Rodgers. Byrd was a man who ``measured against other leaders . . . comes out well,'' but who failed to live up to the image of perfection that he himself created. Byrd's demytholization shouldn't distract readers from the well-researched account of his 1928-31 Antarctic expedition, a notable achievement recounted in serviceable if uninspired prose. For readers of detailed accounts of polar exploration.-- J.F. Husband, Framingham State Coll. Lib., Mass. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


School Library Journal Review

For those who thrill to the courage and foolhardiness of exploits on the ice caps, there is a new adventure waiting. Rodgers had access to recently opened private papers and utilizes these sources to bring immediacy and insight to his subject. Admiral Byrd is revealed as a much more complex character than the saint who wooed the nation for support for his explorations. Not all the Byrd inconsistencies are resolved, but the story is nevertheless fascinating. Collections that admit only one arctic adventure should have Roland Huntford's Scott and Amundsen (Atheneum, 1984; o.p.), but this is a good addition. --Cathy Chauvette, Fairfax County Public Library, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Choice Review

The author of this new comprehensive study of Admiral Byrd writes with authority. In 1963 Rodgers became a public imformation officer for the US Antarctic Research Program. Research on Byrd began in that year but Rodgers came up against a veil of secrecy that had been woven around the explorer, whose supporters would not tolerate close evaluation of the man himself. Based on much new material, including private papers now lodged at Ohio State University, the book reveals that Byrd was not the superhero that his relatives and friends claimed. Byrd was not one to reject challenge. In 1926 he undertook a flight to the North Pole and was planning a trans-Atlantic flight when word reached him that Lindbergh had landed in Paris. Still, Byrd and crew flew to Paris in 1927. He hankered above all for exploration and after much preparation and frustration he set off with his large party for Antarctica in late 1928. His ship reached floating ice in December, and by year's end, the site of Little America had been selected. Conflicts within the group, however, dogged Byrd and the expedition; there were also the inevitable natural hazards. Rodgers suggests that Byrd was not in fact an outstanding navigator, that quite possibly he hated to fly and may not have been on the flight that discovered Marie Byrd Land. Still, on his return to New York, Byrd was given a hero's welcome and the legend began. Byrd, however, deserves, as the book points out, credit for his skills at organization and planning. Above all, the account does not detract from Byrd as much as it demythologizes him. Extensive chapter notes and a select bibliography, including archival materials and other papers. Sixteen pages of photos. College, university, and public libraries. -W. A. D. Jackson, University of Washington


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