Robert Falcon Scott (1868 - 1912) and his four companions reached the South Pole on 7 January 1912, just one month after their rival Norwegian party, led by Roald Amundsen.
Realising that they had been beaten they attempted to make it back to their supply base but the journey was dogged by misfortune and all the men died.
Edgar Evans suffered a fatal concussion in February, and in March Scott’s diary records the heroic end of Captain Lawrence 'Titus' Oates who, stricken with frostbite, walked out from the camp to his death, with the words, 'I may be some time'.
Scott and his two remaining companions were caught in a blizzard and perished only 11 miles from the next supply depot. In his last diary entry he recognises that there is no hope of survival. He writes letters to his family and friends but, perhaps most famously, his final sentence, ‘for God’s sake look after our people’ was reiterated in his last message to the nation.
Along with Scott's diaries, the British Library also holds sledging orders from the Terra Nova expedition. These, along with the diaries, document all aspects of the expedition including the voyage, the establishment of the winter base, the scientific work they undertook, and the sledging expeditions.
To see more of the Diaries of Robert Falcon Scott please go to our award-winning Turning the Pages™.