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Sailor's Housewife

Polar Equipment and Relics

Object details:

Object ID AAA2161
Description A relic of Sir John Franklin's last expedition 1845-8. A sewing kit found in an abandoned boat at Erebus Bay, King William Island, in May 1859 by the McClintock Search Expedition 1857-9. The 'housewife' is made of two strips of ribbon woven with clover plants, oak leaves and acorns. A strip of blue velvet is sewn on either end. It contains a thimble and a quantity of thread, a small package wrapped in cotton fabric held by a pin and a ball of wool. McClintock's party reached this site on the 30 May and discovered that Hobson had been there a few days before on the 18th. The boat was 28 foot long and mounted on a heavy sledge. McClintock found it just above high tide mark pointing back in the direction of the ships and containing a large quantity of abandoned personal possessions and two skeletons. F. L. McClintock 'The voyage of the Fox in the Arctic seas' p.366 'thread case'. It is shown on - 'Stereoscopic slides of the relics of Sir John Franklin's Expedition' photographed by Lieut. Cheyne RN at the United Services Museum, Whitehall, No. 6. Formerly exhibited at the Royal Naval Museum, Greenwich, Franklin Room, case 2 number 48.
Date made Before 1845

Artist/Maker Unknown
Credit National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London.
Materials cotton; silk
Measurements Overall: 45 x 432 x 150 mm
  • Sailor's Housewife (AAA2161)
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