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Rediscovered History

March 26, 2021
Frank Wild and children

One of the lovely aspects of buying at auction is not knowing what you might find.  This was certainly the case for one buyer who stumbled across Frank Wild’s family album in a mixed lot of books. 

Frank Wild (1873 – 1939) was an English sailor and explorer who participated in five expeditions to Antarctica during the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration and was awarded the Polar Medal with four bars.  He was remembered as “Shackleton’s right-hand man”; left in charge of 21 men on a desolate island for the Antarctic winter while Shackleton took 5 men to seek rescue and taking over command of the Shackleton-Rowett Expedition in 1921-22, after Shackleton died of a heart attack.

Born in Yorkshire, there was no known family connection to the Scottish Borders.  Pictures within the album showed the gravestone of one of his siblings, also an Antarctic explorer, before it became clear it belonged to the Wild family.  The purchaser, keen for the album to be recorded, contacted Wild’s biographer, Angela Butler, and the book will now be restored and returned to the family.

If you have a story or images of purchases from Browns ASR Auctions in situ, the team would be delighted to hear from you.

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