The Arctic Voyages of Martin Frobisher: An Elizabethan Adventureby Robert McGhee
Using reports from the men who participated in the venture, details preserved in the oral histories of the Inuit, and archaeological information recovered from the sites of Elizabethan activities on Baffin Island, Robert McGhee describes Frobisher's expeditions and offers new insights into this audacious undertaking. How could Martin Frobisher have convinced himself that a narrow bay on the coast of Baffin Island was a northwest passage to the Pacific? What became of the five members of his company who went ashore and were never seen again? What role, if any, did Frobisher play in the gold-mining fraud? Some of these questions may never be answered but, despite apparent failure, Martin Frobisher's ventures launched England's long period of intense exploration and discovery in this new land.
"Robert McGhee's The Arctic Voyages of Martin Frobisher conclusively demonstrates that human venality and cupidity four centuries ago was well up to modern standards. McGhee casts new light upon one of the most controversial of all arctic ventures - a colossal mining scam perpetrated by Martin Frobisher and his associates in the late sixteenth century - which McGhee tellingly likens to the infamous Bre-X fraud of our own times." Farley Mowat
- University of Washington Press
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 9.50(w) x 8.75(h) x 0.75(d)
Meet the Author
Robert McGhee is curator of Arctic Archaeology at the Canadian Museum of Civilization.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews
An interesting update of one of England's less than glorious steps towards a world empire. To review - Frobisher lead three expeditions to the southern end Baffin Island. The large bay on the southern side carries his name to this day. The 2nd and 3rd trips to the area were primarily to recover more "ore" for transport back to England to be smelted to extract gold, although the search for the Northwest Passage as another stated purpose of his explorations. Except there was no gold on Baffin Island, not then and not now. The author updates the story of this fiasco with research into oral tales of the local Inuit that have survived since the 16th century was well as recent archeological studies and satellite images. The author also explains, without any modern sanctimony injected, the English racist views of the Inuit at the time. Today one can find some of the "ore" that came from the Canadian Arctic still in use as a lovely country wall in England.