February 4, 1902 The first flights over Antarctica took place as part of a British exploration of that region of the world. The British National Antarctic Expedition, which was led by Royal Navy Captain Robert F. Scott, had departed from England in the wooden ship RRS Discovery in August 1901.  The ship crossed the Antarctic... Continue Reading →

January 17, 1947 The U.S. Navy ship USS Burton Island, which was named after an island off the coast of Delaware, began her maiden voyage from San Diego to the Antarctic region’s Ross Sea. Navy Commander Gerald L. Ketchum was in command of the ship. The 269-foot (82-meter)-long icebreaker was designed by the naval architectural... Continue Reading →

October 31, 1956 [Photo courtesy of McDonnell Douglas.] The first-ever aircraft landing at the South Pole took place as a key part of Operation Deep Freeze II, the codename for a series of U.S. missions to Antarctica during 1956-57. The U.S. Navy plane used for this touching down at Earth’s southernmost point was a ski-equipped... Continue Reading →

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