Read all about USS Jeannette's general description, specifications and time line.

Notes:

1. Latitude/longitude, including for days in port, show representative decimal positions for each day, as calculated by the Old Weather project's analysis program. As such, they differ by varying amounts from the positions recorded, usually at noon, in the log pages. In addition, some latitudes/longitudes have been amended in edited logs for errors in the logs, for errors in identifying locations by the analysis program, or simply for greater accuracy. In all cases, refer to the log-page scans for the positions as originally recorded. Not all log pages contain this information and the ships' positions have therefore often been estimated.

2. Full account of any day is available by clicking on the link above that day. Any groups of links may refer to log book covers and introductory information; some may be blank.


LOGS FOR JUNE 1880


50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005f1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_153_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005f3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_153_1.jpg)


1 June 1880

Lat 74.16, Long 177.02

31 May 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 9' 29"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 1'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 145 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 59 tons 558 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 118.5° between 12m & 1pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill driving the "boiler tube pump", and the Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

5 inches

4 inches


Sounded at noon in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift indicated by the lead line.

Commenced preparations for taking down the deck house. Removed felting from interior, took down steam piping heretofore used for auxiliary pump, and made a suitable re-stowage of provisions &c on deck. Carpenters engaged in finishing keel runners for boats.

Weather overcast and gloomy with occasional thick fog. Fresh S.E. breezes with falling barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Provisions condemned during the month

3 lbs flour – damaged by salt water

12 lbs roast beef – bad

4 lbs beef soup – bad

4 lbs mutton soup – bad

2 lbs haddock – bad


Moon 4° 42' N.

Last quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005f5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_154_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005f7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_154_1.jpg)


2 June 1880

No position

1 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 59 tons 338 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 108° between 3 & 4pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill driving the "boiler tube pump", while the Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

9 inches

6 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 33 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.N.W. indicated by the lead line. Lowered the dredge, obtained some small mollusks and other specimens.

Commenced taking down deck house. Painting inside galley house.

Generally overcast and gloomy. South-easterly veering to south-westerly winds, slowly falling, followed by a slowly rising barometer, and regularly varying temperature.


Moon 9° 42' N.

Last quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005f9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_155_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005fb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_155_1.jpg)


3 June 1880

No position

2 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 145 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 59 tons 193 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill driving the "boiler tube pump", and the Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

4 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to N. x E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Engaged in taking down deck house. Finished painting inside of galley house.

Gloomy and disagreeable weather. Brisk variable winds, backing from S.W. to southerly and easterly, and toward midnight veering again to W'd and moderating. Slowly falling barometer, rising with veering wind. Nearly uniform temperature. Occasional falls of snow which was driven in clouds by the brisk winds.


Moon 14° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 372):

Although the surface of our floe is soft and mushy, and we can see it waste away, and though the water is all around our ditch, we seem to be no nearer liberation. The ice at the sounding hole is yet forty-eight inches thick, and the body of the ship seems to be held firmly by ice which does not thaw, with such a layer of water on top of it as our ditch shows. That waste does occur to the surface of the floe is evident, not only from the sinking of ashes and dirt, but from the appearance again on the surface of objects which were long since buried. This seems to afford the dog's great satisfaction, for they occasionally unearth things which they buried months ago, and thus lost, which they now find to enjoy to their hearts' content.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005fd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_156_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0005ff: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_156_1.jpg)


4 June 1880

Lat 74.30, Long 177.28

3 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 17' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 16' 45"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.50pm E. 18° 6'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 2213 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 138° between 3 and 4pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill when the wind serves, and at other times by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Finished taking down the deck house. Lowered the steam cutter into place and secured her. Slushed spars. Painted rudder and finished painting galley house.

Weather generally clear and pleasant. Light variable breezes, rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Moon 18° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 372 ff):

Since May 31st we have advanced only nine miles to N. 27° E., or about three miles a day. Evidently the ice to the northward of us has no tendency to give way as yet, and we accordingly have cushioned off to the eastward. Now it is a very interesting problem (and we may have the good fortune to solve it) which way this ice goes, whether east or west, in the course of its path to an outlet. That it does not steadily set south and find an outlet through Behring Strait is proved by our drift N.W., and the fact that but little ice comparatively is met in Behring Sea in spring and none in summer. That it is not wasted entirely by solar heat is also evident. If it did not go somewhere, the accumulation of years would by this time have closed the Strait altogether. That it goes north is doubtful, because, probably, north of the 85th parallel the ice never breaks up enough to permit navigation. Hence it must go either east or west. To go east is in accordance with the earth's rotation and complies with theory, while in fact the Resolute drifted east through Barrow Strait out into Davis Strait. To go west is contrary to hypotheses based on the rotation of the earth and the supposed direction of equatorial currents; but we have gone N.W. by the prolonged action and force of S.E. winds. Therefore the wind may overpower the attraction of rotation, and set the ice in this ocean so far to the westward as to bring it within the influence of the Polar current about Spitzbergen, and discharge it thus into the Atlantic. Or we may in time, in accordance with my theory, pass from the region of S.E. winds to a region of N.W. winds, when, from their prevalence, they have generated an easterly set, which, encouraged as it were and accelerated by the motion of rotation above referred to, may carry the ice to the eastward through the Archipelago, and cause it to mingle with the Polar current known to be setting south through Smith Sound and Davis Strait, and so on to the Atlantic. As to there being any warm current reaching to a high latitude, I very much doubt. We have found none; and I am inclined to agree with Lieutenant Weyprecht when he says, "The Gulf Stream does not regulate the limits of the ice, but the ice, set in motion by winds, regulates the limits of the warmer Gulf Stream water, depriving the same of the last degrees of heat which it contains", and I pronounce a thermometric gate-way to the Pole a delusion and a snare. Of course if any warm current came through Behring Strait it would be the Kuro Siwo, and our sea temperatures indicated no such fact.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000601: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_157_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000603: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_157_1.jpg)


5 June 1880

Lat 74.25, Long 177.38

4 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 15' 16"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 23'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 1993 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 109° at 10am


The pumping is done by the wind mill when the wind serves, and at other times by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 34 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled dredge.

Crew engaged in stowing the planking &c of deck house out against the bulwark; in re-arranging provisions and other stores as deck load; in unpacking sleds heretofore loaded with 40 days provisions; and in general clearing up about the ship.

A thick fog prevailing nearly all day. Light variable winds, with corresponding variations of the barometer and thermometer.


Moon 21° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000605: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_158_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000607: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_158_1.jpg)


6 June 1880

Lat 74.18, Long 177.36

5 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 10' 54"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 21' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 1773 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 114° between 11am & noon


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

5 inches

4 inches


Sounded at noon in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled dredge.

Weather generally overcast and at times foggy with falls of light snow. Light northerly and easterly succeeded by southerly and easterly winds, rapidly falling barometer at midnight, and nearly uniform temperature.

Crew generally occupied in clearing up about the ship. Engineer’s force engaged in running line of steam-piping through coal bunkers to auxiliary steam pump now in forward store room.


Moon 23° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000609: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_159_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00060b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_159_1.jpg)


7 June 1880

Lat 74.21, Long 177.51

6 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 217 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 12' 19"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 30' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 1518 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 106° between noon & 1pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the Baxter boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N. x W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled dredge.

At 10am Commanding Officer inspected the ship. At 1pm read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. Performed divine service in the cabin.

Weather generally gloomy and unpleasant. Freshening southerly and easterly winds with falling barometer, followed by veering westerly winds and rising barometer.


Moon 24° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd00060d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_160_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00060f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_160_1.jpg)


8 June 1880

Lat 74.08, Long 177.45

7 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 4' 37"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 27'

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.30pm E. 19° 4'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 1518 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 122° at 2pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the Baxter boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

4 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 32 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to E.S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled dredge.

Crew engaged in scraping ships side. Carpenters engaged in fitting the keel runners to the keels of the boats and securing them there.

From this date discontinued fires in cabin and on the berth deck.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light westerly winds, rising, followed by steady barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Moon 24° 26' N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000611: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_161_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000613: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_161_1.jpg)


9 June 1880

Lat 74.01, Long 177.64

8 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 0' 31"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 38' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 1298 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 124° between 1 and 2pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill when the wind serves, and at other times by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. The distilling is done by the Baxter boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

6 inches

4 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in scraping ship's side, red-leading iron work, clearing out boats &c. Carpenters engaged in securing keel runners to boats.

Weather overcast and gloomy during forenoon, with occasional fog and very light snow. In the afternoon bright and pleasant, a fog coming up toward midnight. Light westerly winds, veering and becoming faint toward the close. Slowly rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Moon 23° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000615: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_162_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000617: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_162_1.jpg)


10 June 1880

Lat 73.98, Long 177.66

9 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 58' 53"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 39' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 1078 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 108° between noon & 1pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill when the wind serves, and at other times by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

1 inch

4 inches


Sounded at noon in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in scraping ships side, red-leading iron work, clearing out boats &c. Carpenters engaged in securing keel-runners to boats keels.

Weather generally clear and pleasant until 10pm. Calm until 6am when an easterly air sprung up, followed by rapidly freshening E.S.E. wind.


Moon 21° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000619: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_163_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00061b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_163_1.jpg)


11 June 1880

No position

10 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 858 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 89°


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the Baxter boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

A stormy disagreeable day. Fresh easterly breezes (until towards midnight when they veered and moderated) and steadily falling barometer. Almost continuous fall of very light snow, and much fog.

All work suspended on account of the weather.


Moon 18° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd00061d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_164_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00061f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_164_1.jpg)


12 June 1880

No position

11 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 638 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 121.8° between 10 & 11am


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler, the fire having been hauled under the Baxter boiler for scaling and cleaning purposes.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

4 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Gloomy and disagreeable weather. Light southerly and easterly winds veering in of ~ to northerly and westerly winds. Slowly rising barometer and uniform temperature. Almost continuous fog and light snow.


Moon 14° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000621: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_165_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000623: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_165_1.jpg)


13 June 1880

No position

12 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 528 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 110°


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

4 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Gloomy and disagreeable weather. Freshening N.W. winds, backing to brisk S.W. winds with fluctuating barometer but increasing temperature. Much fog and very light snow, and occasional rain.


Moon 10° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 378):

Though the ice is visibly wasting on the surface, and is sloppy and in places ankle deep in water, there is enough that is firm and solid below to hold us fast, and prevent lanes or openings.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000625: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_166_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000627: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_166_1.jpg)


14 June 1880

Lat 74.06, Long 176.90

13 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 74° 3' 46"

Longitude by chronometer from forenoon observations Sun E. 176° 53' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 308 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

6 inches

5 inches

5 ½ inches


Sounded at noon in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.E. x E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

A young fox was captured near the ship by one of the dogs.

Moderating westerly and south-westerly winds, rising followed by falling barometer with pleasant temperature.


Moon 5° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000629: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_167_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00062b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_167_1.jpg)


15 June 1880

No position

14 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 200 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 198 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom, a rapid drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in painting ship outside, in painting boats &c.


Moon 0° 34' S.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd00062d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_168_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00062f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_168_1.jpg)


16 June 1880

Lat 73.89, Long 177.06

15 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 190 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 53' 16"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 3' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 58 tons 88 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

4 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to E.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Crew engaged in painting ship side, and painting boats.

Weather squally and disagreeable. Fresh W.N.W. wind with occasional light snow. Slowly rising barometer and uniform temperature. Much water sky around the horizon and small ponds of water visible from aloft.


Moon 6° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 380):

Much water-sky all around horizon, and from aloft we can see ponds here and there at long intervals.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000631: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_169_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000633: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_169_1.jpg)


17 June 1880

Lat 73.68, Long 177.30

16 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 190 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 40' 54"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 18' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 2108 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

4 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 25 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.E. magnetic being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Sky generally overcast and cloudy. Weather cold and disagreeable. Moderate N.W. winds, blowing at times in sharp squalls. Occasional light whirls of snow.


Moon 11° S.

First quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000635: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_170_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000637: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_170_1.jpg)


18 June 1880

Lat 73.56, Long 177.45

17 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 190 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 33' 41"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 27' 15"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.40pm E. 19° 24'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 1888 lbs


Maximum temperature indicated by B.B. in vacuo = 135° between 4 and 5pm


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

6 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 22 fathoms, dark blue and sticky mud. A slight drift to E. x S. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in painting starboard side of ship, boats and iron work. Engineer’s force occupied in scaling and cleaning Baxter boiler.

Cloudy and disagreeable weather in the forenoon, clearing and becoming pleasant in the afternoon. Light northerly and westerly succeeded by freshening south-westerly and westerly winds, barometer falling rapidly after 3pm with strong indications of a N.W. blow for tomorrow. Generally uniform temperature. Fall of light snow until 9am.


Moon 16° S.

First quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000639: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_171_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00063b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_171_1.jpg)


19 June 1880

No position

18 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 180 miles N.W. of Herald Island


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 1668 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 21 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in painting starboard side of ship, boats and iron work.

Weather cloudy and disagreeable in the middle of the day, fairly clear and pleasant at other times. Fresh southerly and westerly, succeeded by fresh westerly and north-westerly winds, low barometer and generally uniform temperature.


Moon 20° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 381):

Water-sky in abundance indicates some ponds, if no larger opening; though as they change positions daily, no very considerable opening can have occurred. In our immediate vicinity where the water pumped from the ship froze over the old ice, the crust is thawing and forming ponds. This makes our walking uncertain, for without warning one is apt to break through and be in water over his knees. As all around the ship ashes and refuse have been spread, presenting a black surface, the ice underneath rapidly melts, and by the careful attentions of Melville, Dunbar, and the doctor, the resulting water is led by canals to the ditch, where, by its warmth, say 30°, it honey-combs the heavier ice beneath. By the wasting of the ice the ship is more uncovered, and within a day or two we have noticed that she has come up, "cradle and all," about four inches, as indicated by the falling of the water-level on her doubling.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd00063d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_172_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00063f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_172_1.jpg)


20 June 1880

Lat 73.48, Long 177.75

19 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 190 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 28' 48"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 45' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 160 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 1508 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 23 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in painting outside of ship and in various occupations inboard.

Stiff N.W. winds with occasional hard squalls. Light snow-flurries occasionally. Slowly rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Moon 23° S.

First quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000641: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_173_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000643: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_173_1.jpg)


21 June 1880

No position

20 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 190 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 330 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 1178 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the Baxter boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 24 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was read in the cabin.

Gloomy and disagreeable weather. Fresh southerly winds veering to westward. Rapidly falling barometer, increasing temperature, occasional showers of hail and rain, and light snow. Foggy and rainy as day ends.


Moon 24° 32' S.

First quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000645: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_174_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000647: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_174_1.jpg)


22 June 1880

Lat 73.41, Long 178.34

21 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 190 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 24' 36"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 21' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 60 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 1118 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 23 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom, a drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in painting the bridge, and ironwork about the spar deck.

Squally westerly and south-westerly winds during the day moderating toward midnight. Slowly rising followed by as slowly falling barometer, and nearly uniform temperature. Occasional rain and frequent falls of light snow.


Moon 24° S.

First quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000649: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_175_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00064b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_175_1.jpg)


23 June 1880

Lat 73.39, Long 178.48

22 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 180 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 23' 16"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 28' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 948 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 24 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged in blacking down rigging.

Light westerly and south-westerly winds with steadily rising barometer, and sudden fall of temperature toward midnight. Occasional light snow.


Moon 22° S.

Full moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd00064d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_176_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00064f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_176_1.jpg)


24 June 1880

Lat 73.35, Long 178.53

23 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 180 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 21' 12"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 31' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 778 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 ½ inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 24 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather clear and pleasant in the forenoon, cloudy and dull in the afternoon. Light southerly and westerly winds backing to southerly and easterly winds, freshening steadily until midnight at which time the wind was quite fresh with hard squalls.


Moon 18° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 386):

The thawing on the surface of the floe has kept everything sloppy, some places being an inch deep and more in water.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000651: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_177_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000653: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_177_1.jpg)


25 June 1880

No position

24 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 180 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 608 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 24 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom, a rapid drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Fresh breeze from southward and eastward veering to southward and westward. Steadily rising barometer and uniform temperature. Rain during forenoon.


Moon 13° S.

Full moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000655: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_178_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000657: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_178_1.jpg)


26 June 1880

Lat 73.46, Long 178.88

25 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 27' 32"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 53' 0"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 438 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 24 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Moderate south-westerly winds veering to north-easterly; steadily rising barometer and pleasant temperature.

Nine (9) seals were killed and brought in by hunting parties. A small bear shot, but escaped by taking to the water.

Long lane of water about 1 ½ miles S.E. of the ship, with numerous small ponds indicated by water sky in nearly all directions.


Moon 7° 49' S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 397 ff):

This day is worthy of record as bringing another Ross gull, shot by Aniguin, and no less than nine seals. Besides this Aniguin saw and shot his last cartridge into a young bear, but the animal, though bleeding freely, took to the water and escaped. The "water" referred to is the long lane about one and a half miles S.E. of the ship, which is daily visited by seal hunters. Thermometer is generally at 31° and 32°, but at three p.m. it was 37.5°. Oh, if we could have it at 100° for a week to melt this ice rapidly! That some melting is going on beneath is shown by the water-level going steadily down on the ship's side, the weight holding her down becoming less. We now have the sea-level at nine feet seven and a half inches forward.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000659: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_179_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00065b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_179_1.jpg)


27 June 1880

Lat 73.47, Long 178.45

26 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 28' 18"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 27' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 268 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 24 fathoms, muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally gloomy. Sky overcast and toward the end of the day there was much fog. Fresh north-easterly winds backing and moderating. Slowly rising barometer and pleasant temperature.

An opening ten feet in width occurred in the ice between the ship, and the long lane about 1 ½ miles to the SE. Much water sky to the northward.


Moon 2° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 388):

An opening ten feet wide occurred in the ice half way to the old opening one and a half miles S. E. of the ship. Much water-sky in all directions.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd00065d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_180_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00065f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_180_1.jpg)


28 June 1880

Lat 73.41

27 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 24' 39"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun No Observation


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 57 tons 98 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

6 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 23 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was read in the cabin.

From the "crow's nest" at the fore-topmast head a lane of water could be seen about a quarter of a mile in width and extending all around the ice immediately surrounding the ship at a mean distance of a mile.

Light breezes between north and S.W. Much fog at beginning and ending of the day.


Moon 3° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 388):

From the crow's nest we can see that we are in the centre of an ice island, a lane of water in some places a quarter of a mile wide surrounding us at a distance of a mile. This would show that the ice does sometimes open in these latitudes, a fact which I had begun to doubt hitherto.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000661: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_181_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000663: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_181_1.jpg)


29 June 1880

Lat 73.38, Long 178.33

28 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 22' 56"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 19' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 2168 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill and the distilling by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

3 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

The amount of water coming into the ship forward seems to have somewhat decreased, the pumping being less frequently required. The leak or supposed leak in the starboard side of the shaft alley has entirely ceased. The ice in the immediate vicinity of the ship is rapidly wasting; and the ice cradle which holds her down by its weight has apparently wasted away also, for the ship has risen with it until the water-level is at 9 feet 4 inches on her stem. The ship is heeled 4° to starboard with her doubling about 4 inches above the water, amidships on the side.

About a mile to N.W. (mag.) there is a lane of open water which is in places about 2/3 mile wide and extends at least 15 miles to the N’d. A boat went through it that distance today without seeing its termination. Towards midnight this lane commenced to close and freezing began on its surface.


Moon 8° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 388 ff):

Mr. Dunbar started out this morning with the dingy to go ducking, intending to go to the lane of water about one mile N.W. of us, and try luck. He came back about four p.m. with thirteen ducks, and informed me that he followed the lane (which he thought ran north) for nearly fifteen miles without coming to its end. The ice on each side (at times two thirds of a mile wide) was very old and heavy, five and six feet out of water, and so deep under water that he could not see the bottom of it. I began to look upon this as an avenue of escape, and ran over in my mind how I could get the ship through the mile of intervening ice into the lane and push on for something. But I need not have exercised my slumbering brain tissue, for toward midnight the lane commenced to close, and I had the melancholy satisfaction of realizing that had the ship been there she would in all probability have had a fine squeezing.

The ice right around us is wasting very fast, and we still continue to rise, bringing our cradle with us. To-day the water-line is at nine feet four inches on our stem. We are heeling 4° to starboard (3° all winter), and our doubling on the starboard side is about four inches above the water. The surface of our floe is dotted here and there with small lakes, which enable us to get water readily for our tank, and present so many excellent laundries for washing clothes. How disgusting it is to see ice form on the surface of our little lakes at the end of June.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000665: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_182_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000667: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_182_1.jpg)


30 June 1880

Lat 73.34, Long 178.41

29 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 20' 23"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 24' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 1998 lbs


The pumping is done by the wind mill when the wind serves, and at other times by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. The distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 23 ¼ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Light northerly and westerly breeze and an almost cloudless sky. Slightly fluctuating barometer and pleasant temperature.

The lane of water recorded in yesterday's log as extending 15 miles to the northward is closed in places today, a series of disconnected small ponds marking its general direction.

The ship has risen, the water level being now at 9 feet on her stem.

Crew engaged in various occupations about the ship, and in hunting.


Moon 17° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 389):

The lane of open water which Mr. Dunbar followed up for fifteen miles yesterday has closed again to-day, its general direction being indicated by disconnected small ponds here and there. The ship is still rising, the water-level being now at nine feet on the stem.




LOGS FOR JULY 1880


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000669: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_183_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00066b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_183_1.jpg)


1 July 1880

Lat 73.33, Long 178.46

30 June 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 19' 41"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 27' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 1828 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. The distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

3 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded at noon in 23 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

By order Commanding Officer, George W. Boyd (2nd class fireman) was given extra duty for 24 hours (watch and watch at the distilling apparatus) for profane and abusive language to a shipmate.

Bright and pleasant weather. From noon to midnight the sky was absolutely cloudless. Light northerly and easterly airs veering to S.E. with slowly falling barometer and exceptionally high barometer.


Provisions condemned during the month

150 lbs beans – damaged by salt water

4 lbs corn meal – damaged by salt water

30 lbs Rio coffee – damaged by salt water

16 lbs beef soup – spoiled

12 lbs roast beef – spoiled

3 lbs roast mutton – spoiled

1 ½ lbs canned turnips – spoiled


Moon 17° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 390):

To-day I had to inflict the first punishment of the cruise on Boyd, fireman, giving him watch and watch for twenty-four hours in the fire-room, for profane and abusive language to a shipmate.

Mr. Dunbar took the dingy out to the long lead to-day, but found it all closed up. No ducks, therefore, were brought back, but a Ross gull, which, though quite rare in Europe and America, is with us a drug almost, for we have seven.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd00066d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_184_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00066f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_184_1.jpg)


2 July 1880

Lat 73.35, Long 178.53

1 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 21' 14"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 31' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 1658 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump, and the distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded in 23 fathoms, muddy bottom, a slight N.W. drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Light southerly and easterly breeze, with slowly falling barometer and agreeable temperature.


Moon 20° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 391):

Our coal account shows that we have remaining fifty-six and one half tons. At all hazards I must retain thirty tons for keeping us warm and cooking and distilling next winter, so that I have just twenty-six tons that could be devoted to steaming in case I had a fair chance to accomplish anything. As our consumption per diem in steaming would be at least five tons, I have in round numbers five days' steaming. And with this I have to make the Pole, accomplish the N.W. Passage, or go back empty handed. What an ending the last would be compared with our beginning, — the yachts, the fort's salute, etc., etc. It makes my heart sick to think of it. What a return for the expenditure of money! What a realization of all my fond dreams and hopes!


To-day our men dug away the ice under and around our propeller well, hoping for a time soon to come when we can get the screw up and have a look at it. We still rise slowly, but there is yet a large mass clinging to us. Melville tried the other day to turn the screw shaft by jacking, but it was held too rigidly.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000671: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_185_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000673: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_185_1.jpg)


3 July 1880

Lat 73.38, Long 178.60

2 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 23' 02"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 36' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 1488 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump, and the distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


Sounded in 23 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Bright and pleasant weather with light variable airs and calms. Steadily falling barometer and high temperature.


Moon 23° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 391):

A temperature ranging from 34° to 46.4° and back to 32°, and ponds here and there to mock us with water that is too little for navigation and too salt for drinking — at all these we stand and look, and see one day more pass by without our having done a thing that is to our credit.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000675: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_186_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000677: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_186_1.jpg)


4 July 1880

Lat 73.40, Long 178.57

3 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 24' 13"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 34'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 1318 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump, and the distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Water in the ship to day


at 8am

at 4pm

at midnight

At fire room bilge

5 inches

5 inches

5 inches


The water has ceased coming into the ship forward, the fore peak and flour room being absolutely dry. The supposed leak in the shaft alley having ceased also for some time, it is considered that whatever water comes into the ship now must be found under the coal bunkers whence it finds its way to the fire room bilge. The amount of coal in the ship and the fact that the ice may be soon expected to break up, makes it impossible to examine into this part of the ship.

The amount of water is very small, a few strokes of the quarter deck bilge pump each hour being sufficient to lower it to 5 inches at about which depth it is kept in the fire room for convenient supply to the distilling apparatus.

The ship with her surrounding ice cradle has risen until the water level stands at a height of 8 feet 7 inches on her stem.

Sounded in 24 ¼ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather bright and pleasant. Light variable airs and calms. Slowly falling barometer to noon, thence steady barometer to midnight. Very pleasant temperature.


Moon 24° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 392 ff):

The melting of the surface ice around us has so much decreased the mass of ice surrounding the ship that it has been buoyed up by the water bringing the ship with it, and to-day the water-level is at a height, or perhaps more properly depth, of eight feet seven inches on our stem.

We have dug away all the ice we could get at under the stern, in the hope of liberating our screw in order to trice it up for examination. But enough ice remains under water to hold it firmly. Leaning 3° or 4° to starboard, the port side of our ship looms up like a frigate, and at a little distance we stand, seemingly, on top of the ice. Drawing but eight feet seven inches forward, and twelve feet aft, gives us a very "down at heel" look, and makes me wonder what we shall really draw when the ice-cradle breaks up under us and lets us down to our line of flotation.

The little ponds in our neighborhood have been freezing every night at midnight with the thermometer at 30° and 31°, thus indicating the comparative freshness of their waters. In the daytime our dogs drink freely from these ponds, and our men use them as convenient washing-places for clothes.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000679: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_187_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00067b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_187_1.jpg)


5 July 1880

Lat 73.41

4 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 24' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 1148 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump, and the distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Sounded in 24 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am called "all hands to muster". Read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The Commanding Officer inspected the ship and afterwards read divine service in the cabin.

Gloomy and disagreeable weather. Light N.W. wind veering to N.E. finally and freshening a little. Thick fog and mist nearly all day. Slowly rising barometer.


Moon 24° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdc7438ae05bd00067d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_188_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00067f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_188_1.jpg)


6 July 1880

Lat 73.44

5 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 26' 7"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 978 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump, and the distilling is done by the steam cutter's boiler.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Dressed ship with Union Jack forward. Ensigns at mast heads and flag staff and rainbow of signal flags in honor of the anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.

Gloomy and disagreeable weather. Thick fog until toward midnight. Light north-easterly and easterly wind with a slight fall in barometer and slight increase of temperature.

Crew engaged in collecting melting ice from the surface of the hummocks to be used if possible for cooking and drinking.


Moon 23° 43' N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 395):

Celebrated the anniversary of American Independence by dressing ship with ensigns at mast-heads, and signals in a rainbow; and I hope American Independence will feel sufficiently complimented by its celebration in this place for the first time. The weather prevented me from determining the exact spot of the celebration by observations. The latitude, 73° 26' 7" N., is all I could get. Thick fog and a searching mist made a wretched day. The flags were all covered with rime and frost when hauled down, and will need several days' good sunning to be dried.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000681: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_189_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000683: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_189_1.jpg)


7 July 1880

Lat 73.50, Long 178.06

6 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 30' 5"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 3' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 808 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump, and steam is raised in the steam cutter's boiler to thaw snow in water tank on deck.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Gloomy disagreeable weather. Much fog throughout the day. Easterly and E.S.E. winds with slowly falling barometer and uniform temperature.

Crew engaged in bringing in surface ice for drinking and cooking purposes.


Moon 21° 49' N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 396):

Parties going out to hunt return with the news that the ship is in the centre of an island of ice about two and one half miles in diameter, with a narrow canal running around it.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000685: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_190_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000687: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_190_1.jpg)


8 July 1880

No position

7 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 0 gallons

Water remaining on hand fit for use at Noon: melted ice 400 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 638 lbs


The pumping is done by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. A tank full of melted snow of sufficient purity for drinking and cooking purposes having been secured, the distilling is discontinued.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Foggy and gloomy weather. Light S.E. winds dying out toward midnight. Slowly falling followed by slowly rising barometer and uniform temperature.


Moon 19° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 397):

The running of the water over the floes in long lanes has made regular sluice ways through which the meltings run to find the sea-level. Our old sounding hole, about one hundred yards on the starboard quarter, offers an access to the sea, and several streams have scoured a way or had a way made for them. This running water has wasted the ice away until at the edges of the hole it is but two feet thick, and covered with six inches of water swirling about like a maelstrom. Through this we can see the seeming black cavern below, and in the monotony which hangs around us I almost feel tempted to jump down it to see where it goes to.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd000689: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_191_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00068b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_191_1.jpg)


9 July 1880

Lat 73.64, Long 177.89

8 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 38' 24"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 53' 30"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 170 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 468 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 24 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Light northerly and westerly breeze, with slightly rising barometer and nearly even temperature. Fog and mist during the forenoon; partially clear and pleasant weather in the afternoon.


Moon 15° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 397 ff):

I have hereinbefore mentioned that the greatest thickness of a single floe seen by us was seven feet ten inches, or say roughly eight feet. When, after ramming the ship through forty miles of leads last September, she was finally brought up, I pushed her into a crevice between two heavy floes which we subsequently found to be thirteen feet in thickness. I think this great depth was caused by the overriding of one floe on another, and regelation under pressure having taken place, the two became united as one mass. Mr. Dunbar, in his several tramps, has met ice which he describes as "so deep that you could now see how deep it was" This being rather vague, I directed him to-day to take with him a line, with hook attached, to catch under these floes, and thus give a measure of their thickness. Upon his return he reports that he measured floes ten and twelve feet thick, and some fourteen and fifteen feet thick, and the surface was "from a foot to eighteen inches above the water". It is, of course, impossible that such thicknesses should be ascribed to any one single floe. I am satisfied that when water has frozen to a thickness of eight feet the ice forms a blanket which effectually prevents the radiation of heat from the water beneath, and thus makes further freezing impossible. Any further thickness is due to deposits of snow on the surface, or the shoving under of another floe and a union by regelation between the two. When, last November, we were squeezed out of our icy bed and pushed out into water, we were as truly floating for a time as if in mid-ocean. The next day, however, we were iced in. This freezing continued from November 28th to January 17th, by which latter date the ice had a thickness of forty-eight inches (four feet). Subsequent measurements were rendered impossible by the smash up of the 19th of January, when floes so overrode and underrode our surrounding ice as to jumble it all in a heap. When we commenced to dig a canal around the ship we dug through four feet of ice before the water flowed in on us, but that depth was due to piling up, of course, and not to any direct freezing. As our leak has almost altogether subsided, it is safe to assume that we are buoyed up by a floe of ice extending down and under the keel, which floe, being lightened by its surface thawing under the ashes and refuse we had spread around us, is enabled to float so much higher. One of these days, let us hope, this mass will break and let us down to our bearings.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd00068d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_192_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00068f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_192_1.jpg)


10 July 1880

Lat 73.63, Long 177.92

9 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 37' 32"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 55'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 358 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 22 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 8am loosed sails to dry. At 3.30 furled them.

Weather clear and pleasant at times, at other times overcast and rainy. Light westerly winds succeeded by moderate southerly winds. Steady barometer, and, toward midnight, slight fall in temperature.


Moon 11° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000691: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_193_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000693: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_193_1.jpg)


11 July 1880

No position

10 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 248 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 22 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Rainy, foggy and disagreeable weather.


Moon 6° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000695: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_194_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd000697: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_194_1.jpg)


12 July 1880

Lat 73.63, Long 177.99

11 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 38'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 59' 30"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 138 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by Commanding Officer, after which divine service was held in the cabin.


Moon 1° N.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd000699: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_195_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00069b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_195_1.jpg)


13 July 1880

Lat 73.65, Long 177.90

12 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 39' 8"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 53' 45"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 56 tons 28 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 22 fathoms, muddy bottom. A slight drift N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled dredge.

Crew engaged in coal-tarring the elm doubling of the hull.

Ship listed 5° to starboard. The water level is near about at 7 feet on the stem and 12 feet on the rudder post.

Weather warm, bright and pleasant. Light easterly breezes, with slowly rising barometer.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 48.5°

2 fathoms = 37° x – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 48.5° x Miller-Casella No 25251

21 fathoms = 32.5° xx – Specific gravity = 1.026 at 46° xx Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 4° 36' S.

New moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd00069d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_196_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd00069f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_196_1.jpg)


14 July 1880

Lat 73.71, Long 177.84

13 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 42' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 177° 50' 30"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 2158 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very slight drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

The ice under and astern of the ship was measured to day with the following result:

Thickness of ice under the stern = 5 feet 4 inches below the surface of the water

Thickness of ice 50 feet astern = 4 feet 3 inches below the surface of the water

Thickness of ice 100 feet astern = 5 feet 0 inches below the surface of the water

Thickness of ice 150 feet astern = 5 feet 0 inches below the surface of the water

Thickness of ice 250 yards on starboard quarter = 5 feet 1 inch below the surface of the water

In each case the surface of the ice cut through was 4 inches above the water. The formation has occurred since November 30th, 1879. As well as can be determined the ship is lifted forward by a second large floe piece which was pushed against and under the surrounding ice on the 19th January and this piece extends as far aft as the main mast nearly. She is heeled to the starboard 5°. All of her port side is uncovered above a horizontal line connecting the height of 7 feet on her stem with the height of 12 feet on her rudder post – as the ice has melted more rapidly and evenly on the port side than on the starboard side.

Weather clear, bright, warm and pleasant until 6pm when a dense fog arose and with one hour exception continued until midnight. The wind freshened correspondingly to a rise in the barometer.


Water temperatures and specific gravities – insufficient water obtained in cup.

Surface temperature = 34°


Moon 10° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 399 ff):

Observations to-day show a drift since yesterday of three and seven tenths miles to N. 13° W. We seem to be coming up slowly, ice and all, as indicated by the gradual falling of the water-level on our hull. Heeling 5° to starboard still, and that is also slightly increasing. Of course I cannot say when this will stop. In order to get an idea of the correct thickness of the ice in our neighborhood (in case subsequent emergency should make it advisable to dig or saw out a dock, if possible, and make an effort to drag the ship into it), I directed Chipp to make borings, and he reports, as far as can be made out, the situation as follows: —


The ship is held firmly by a cradle of ice which, from the mainmast aft, averages five feet in thickness. (Under the stem it is five feet four inches thick below the surface of the water.) From ahead to the mainmast, about, there is a second floe piece which shoved under the first floe on January 19th.

Thickness of ice below the surface of the water: —


Under the stem

5 ft. 4 in.

50 ft. astern

4 ft. 3 in.

100 ft. astern

4 ft. 3 in.

150 ft. astern

5 ft. 0 in.

250 yds. starboard quarter

5 ft. 0 in.


The ice as a general thing has its surface about four inches above the level of the water. This is what is left of the direct freezing since November 30, 1879, of course thawing having taken place on the surface by reason of the sun's rays, and underneath by action of the warmth of the water, say 34°.


In company with Melville and Dunbar I walked one of Mr. Dunbar's mile estimates (about two and a half miles in fact) to the S.E., where there has been an opening affording seal shooting. In a straight line, as a bird would fly, it is about one and a quarter miles distant, the increased amount being caused by necessary detours, to go around small ponds which one cannot jump over, and which are in places over one's boot-tops in depth. These are, of course, formed from surface thawing. Arrived at the "open water" it proved to be nearly closed, a width of six feet only allowing a look down in the depths below. The ice seemed to be about four feet in thickness, but looking only was very deceptive. In this precious lane there floated a broken portion of the floe, and anxious to realize the sensation of being under way again I embarked on it and pushed myself across. Near the old opening there was considerable dirty ice, with shells and small pebbles, showing that this ice had been on the bottom, or had rubbed along the land, or (query?) was it refuse matter left on it by a walrus? Near by we found a log of birch (?), heavy from water soaking, but sound and fresh at the fractured end. Not being able to bring it in we stuck it up in a hummock, that some men might let their dogs drag it in tomorrow.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006a1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_197_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006a3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_197_1.jpg)


15 July 1880

Lat 73.71, Long 178.02

14 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 42' 50"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 1'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 2048 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Light westerly and south-westerly wind with unsteadily rising barometer and slightly varying temperature. Much fog throughout the day.

About 1 mile N.W. of the ship there is a lane of open water about ¼ mile wide and extending west.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 33° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 45°

2 fathoms = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 42°

22 fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.025 at 42° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 15° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 402):

About one and a fourth miles N.W. of the ship there is a lane of water one fourth mile in width, and extending W. Mr. Dunbar plans going to it to-morrow and cruising on it in our skin boat.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006a5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_198_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006a7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_198_1.jpg)


16 July 1880

Lat 73.68

15 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 40' 40"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1938 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 ¼ fathoms, muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Discovered this morning that the ship had risen forward one inch and gone down by the stern the same amount. This occurred since 8pm yesterday.

The lane of open water mentioned in yesterday’s log is found closed to day.

Aired furs and fur-clothing.

Weather pleasant and generally clear in the forenoon; overcast and rainy, varied by foggy and misty, weather prevailed in the afternoon. Freshening S.W. and S.S.W. winds veering toward midnight. Steadily falling barometer in unison with freshening wind. Very nearly uniform temperature but sensation of cold much intensified by the moisture of atmosphere.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 44 ½°

2 fathoms = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 43 ½°

22 ¼ fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.025 at 46° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 19° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 402):

Mr. Dunbar started out this morning, but soon returned, having found the lead of yesterday all closed up. Thus do things change in this part of the world. We made the discovery this morning that the ship had come up one inch forward, and gone down an inch aft, caused probably by the encradling underlying ice having melted sufficiently to change the point of support farther forward. It will give us something to watch from day to day.



50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006a9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_199_0.jpg)

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17 July 1880

Lat 73.61, Long 178.38

16 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 36' 21"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 22' 45"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1828 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 22 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. x E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

About 1 ½ miles S.E. of the ship the ice is broken into large blocks with narrow lanes of water among them. The extent of the broken ice cannot be estimated because of the hummocky nature of the surroundings limiting the view.

Generally foggy and misty during the forenoon; partially clear at times during the afternoon. Light westerly breezes, barometer steady (until toward midnight when it begins to fall) and nearly uniform temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 33.7° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 39.5°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 39.5°

21 fathoms = 29.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.02485 at 38.5° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 22° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 403):

Our observations to-day show a drift since the 14th of nine miles to S. 43° E. Rather discouraging as to direction, but hopeful as showing a loose condition of the ice, which admits of our readily moving in compliance with the wind. The open water (i.e. a crack in the ice), one and a half miles S.E. of the ship, has widened somewhat, and beyond it the ice seems broken up in large blocks, though from their uneven surfaces we cannot tell for how great a distance this broken condition extends.



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18 July 1880

No position

17 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1718 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 22 fathoms. Muddy bottom, a drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Much fog, mist, drizzling rain and occasional snow during the day. Sudden shift of wind from S.W. to S.E. at 6am followed by rapid fall of barometer. Again a sudden shift from S.E. to west at 1pm with a rapid increase of velocity and quick rise of the barometer. Thenceforward wind generally between north and west but not steady at any one point. Slightly varying temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 44°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 45°

21 fathoms = 29.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 45° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 24° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 404):

So slack does the ice seem, that a shift of wind is immediately noticeable in our change of drift.



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19 July 1880

Lat 73.47

18 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 28' 17"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1608 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and divine service was afterwards read in the cabin.

Fresh westerly breezes with squalls during forenoon; foggy and misty at times, and, during the afternoon a little snow fell. Barometer slowly rises at the beginning of the day but remains steady after 8am.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 41°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 40°

22 fathoms = 29° x – Specific gravity = 1.0258 at 39.5° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 24° S.

First quarter


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50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006b7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_202_1.jpg)


20 July 1880

Lat 73.39, Long 178.28

19 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 23' 10"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 16' 30"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1498 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 22 ½ fathoms, muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

The narrow lane of open water herein before mentioned as entirely surrounding and making an island of the ice in which the ship is held, has again opened and is the circumference of a circle whose radius is about 1 mile. The ice immediately surrounding the ship being of one season’s formation has an average thickness of 5 feet, except where under-riding or over-riding blocks and then freezing together have formed solid blocks whose thickness may be 10 or 15 feet. But at the edges of this ice island at the deep water there are large masses about forty feet in thickness whose surfaces are about three feet above the surface of the water.

Weather disagreeable during forenoon, with mist, drizzling rain and even snow; but in the afternoon it clears somewhat and becomes pleasanter. Light north-westerly breezes backing as far as south before midnight with falling barometer and but little change in the temperature.

The ship being held firmly in a cradle of ice, the surface of the water is at the heights of her stem and rudder post as follows:

Forward 7 feet 4 inches, aft 11 feet 8 ¼ inches, ship heeling 5 ½° to starboard.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 41.5°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 41°

21 ½ fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.026 at 40° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 23° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 405 ff):

Hoping to see something consoling, I took a team of dogs out to-day to the S.E., to the open lane of water; and after having been run away with twice and brought back to the ship by the dogs, I was forced to secure the services of Alexey to get me to my destination. A white man inspires no fear among these animals. Reaching the open water I found it was about one fourth of a mile in width, enough to handle a vessel in under steam, but made a circle around the ship irregularly. I am satisfied that nearly all the ice in our neighborhood is of this last winter's formation, having frozen over the small lake into which we were squeezed out from among the heavy ice on November 25th last. The borders of our island are formed of ice of great thickness, perhaps forty feet thick, whose surfaces are about three feet above the level of the water. The ice which immediately surrounds us has an average thickness of say five feet, except where crowding, as for instance under our bows, has caused one layer to ride over or under another, making a thickness of ten or fifteen feet.


Owing to decay, the cradle of ice holding the ship is becoming specifically lighter, and buoying us up; for to-day the water-level stands at seven feet four inches forward, and eleven feet eight and a fourth to starboard, it being now 5 ½°.



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21 July 1880

Lat 73.39

20 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 23' 24"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1388 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom, a slight drift to N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally disagreeable. Overcast or very cloudy all day with rain or mist or fog. Light south-easterly winds veering to S.W. in the afternoon. Slowly falling barometer to noon, thence slowly rising to midnight.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 42°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 40°

22 ½ fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0258 at 39.5° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 20° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 406 ff):

Desiring to learn something of the character of the ice at the borders of our island, I started at one p.m., accompanied by Melville and Dunbar and a heavy dog team. Going out to southeast, we got around to west in about two hours and a half; but as the sledging was in some places very bad over broken ice, the time was much longer than the actual distance would have required if on a level. The character of the ice is as indicated in yesterday's record, — one season's ice near the ship, and old and very heavy ice on the borders. Excepting a very narrow lead at west going a short distance to north, I saw no way of getting out of this neighborhood, even if we were afloat and at liberty to move. As far as our floating is concerned, that must be left to time. To-day the water-level is at seven feet four inches forward, and eleven feet nine and one half inches aft, and our heel 5 ½° to starboard.

As an addition to our trophies, a branch of birch and the skull of a codfish were brought in to-day.



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22 July 1880

Long 178.57

21 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun no observation

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 34'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1278 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 23 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom, a drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather foggy and misty during the forenoon; clearing partially in the afternoon with frequent snow flurries. Moderate breezes between N.W. and S.W. with corresponding fluctuations in the barometer.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 42°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 41°

22 ¾ fathoms = 29.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 40.5° x Miller-Casella No 25251


Moon 15° S.

Full moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006c1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_205_0.jpg)

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23 July 1880

Lat 73.34

22 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 20' 15"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1168 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. It is observed that 317 strokes in 24 hours keeps the water at five inches in the bilge, showing a slight increase in the leak, as only 240 strokes were required in the same length of time a week ago.

The water level stands at 7 feet 2 ¾ inches forward and 11 feet 11 ¾ inches aft, the ship heeling 5 ½° to starboard. Carefully marked buttons have been nailed on the stem and rudder post (on the port side) and the measurements of water level are read from these buttons.

Sounded in 23 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom, a rapid drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Brisk S.W. winds freshening at times to stiff squalls during the early part of the day. An almost continuous fall of very light snow, with an occasional passing shower of rain. Slowly rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature.

But little change in the lane of open water surrounding the ice-island within which the ship is confined. In places its width is about ½ a mile. At a point north of the ship and distant about 3 miles the lane was closing, ice of this last winter's formation and about 5 feet in thickness being up-ended in large blocks to a height of 15 or 20 feet, and by their breaking forming a confused rubble.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0015 at 40°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 39.5°

22 ¾ fathoms = 30.2° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 39° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 10° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 407 ff):

This afternoon I started out with Melville, Dunbar, Aniguin, and a dog team, to see some more of our ice-island. I succeeded, however, in getting around from west to north only, the traveling being very rough indeed. Arriving at north, I found the lane of water closing up, the five foot (one season's) ice piling up in huge slabs on some very old and heavy ice. The sight and the sound quite carried me back to our experience during the winter. As the soft state of the surfaces rendered impossible the high scream which we used to listen to, there was not much of the terror inspired; but one could not help being impressed with the tremendous force with which these blocks were crushed along, reared up, and tumbled over, and the silent grinning "surge" with which the force continued when one would suppose it counteracted and ended. Here I was ready to turn back, having been out three hours, and being wet through from wading and being dragged through ponds too wide to go around without immensely increasing the distance.


A truly wretched day, — squally, rainy, snowy, and what not. At six a.m. Chipp required seven letters to record the state of the weather, — o. c. m. q. p. r. s., — which shows it must have been somewhat mixed.



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24 July 1880

Lat 73.24, Long 178.83

23 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 14' 29"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 178° 49' 30"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 1058 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 24 ¼ fathoms. Muddy bottom, a rapid drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Moderate breeze from westward, steadying at W.S.W. in the afternoon. Generally uniform barometer and temperature. Some fog and mist during the forenoon, and an occasional snow squall during the entire day.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 37.5°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 37.5°

23 ¼ fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 36.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 4° S.

Full moon


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25 July 1880

No position

24 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 948 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 24 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Gloomy disagreeable weather. Brisk westerly breezes with occasional sharp squalls during forenoon with occasional light rain and snow. Breeze growing light during afternoon, but sky does not clear. Slowly falling followed by slowly rising barometer with nearly even temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 38°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 37.5°

23 fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 37° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 1° N.

Full moon


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26 July 1880

Lat 73.06, Long 179.06

25 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 3' 30"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 179° 3' 30"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 838 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 24 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to E.S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At the conclusion of the inspection divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally cloudy and gloomy. Occasional rain and snow. Light westerly winds backing to S.W., with but little change in barometer or temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 39.5°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 39.5°

23 ¾ fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 39° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 7° N.

Full moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006d1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_209_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006d3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_209_1.jpg)


27 July 1880

Lat 73.03, Long 179.31

26 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 1' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 179° 18' 45"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 728 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 25 fathoms. Muddy bottom, a drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Alexey (native hunter) had his hand badly cut to day. Attempting to pick the fulminate cap out of a Remington cartridge which had missed fire in his rifle, using his knife for that purpose, he succeeded in exploding the cartridge while it was held between the thumb and first finger of his left hand. The bullet was not detached from the metal case by the explosion, but the case itself was blown into ragged edges which lacerated the man's hand seriously.

Weather cloudy and gloomy all day. Light S.W. wind veering to northward with slowly rising barometer after noon, and marked fall in temperature. Almost steady fall of light snow until 8am.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 42.5°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.004 at 42.5°

24 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0256 at 42.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 11° N.

Full moon


50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006d5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_210_0.jpg)

50a27fdc7438ae05bd0006d7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol002of004/vol002_210_1.jpg)


28 July 1880

Lat 73.01, Long 179.30

27 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 0' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun E. 179° 17' 45"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5pm E. 18° 14'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 618 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 25 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Light snowfall nearly all day. Northerly and westerly, backing to southerly and westerly breeze with slowly falling barometer and rising temperature. Sky generally overcast until noon, and partially clear thereafter until near midnight.

No marked change occurs in the ice in the vicinity of the ship. She is held within our ice-island of irregularly curved shape and about four miles in its greatest diameter. The water surrounding this island varies in width from one hundred yards to a mile, the greatest width being as a rule on the windward side. The ice varies in thickness from four to twenty feet, with small holes here and there through the thinner ice. The ship is heeled 6° to starboard and the water level is to day at 7 feet 2 inches forward and 12 feet 4 inches aft. The ice forward probably extends down to her keel, being the formation caused by under riding floes on January 19th. From the mainmast aft she is held by ice about 5 feet in thickness the surface of which is from one to two feet under water. The amount of water now coming into the ship from the damaged garboards (as supposed) is pumped out by about 300 strokes of the hand bilge pump per day.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 38.5°

2 fathoms = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0035 at 38°

24 fathoms = 28.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 39° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 16° N.

Full moon



LOG BOOK – 29 JULY 1880 TO 14 FEBRUARY 1881


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Title Page

Commencing July 28th, 1880,

July 29th, 1880, at Lat. 73° 0' 45" N., Long 179° 17' 45" E., at which point the vessel still beset is drifting in the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean.

And ending February 13th (February 14th), 1881, at Lat 75° 4' N. Longitude 171° 3' E. (approximately), at which point, about 330 miles, N. 46° W. of Herald Island, the vessel, still beset, is drifting in the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean.


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List of officers and others

List of officers and others attached to and on board of the U.S: Arctic Steamer "Jeannette", commanded by Lieut. George W. DeLong, U.S.N., the 13th day of February 1881 in the Arctic Ocean.


George W. DeLong

Lieutenant

Charles W. Chipp

Lieutenant

John W. Danenhower

Master

George W. Melville

P.A. Engineer

James M. Ambler

P.A. Surgeon

Mr. Jerome J. Collins, Meteorologist

Seaman

Mr. Raymond L. Newcomb, Naturalist

Seaman

Mr. William Dunbar, Ice Pilot

Seaman

John Cole

Seaman

Alfred Sweetman

Seaman

W.F.C. Nindemann

Seaman

Walter Lee

Machinist

James H. Bartlett

1st class Fireman

George W. Boyd

2nd class Fireman

Walter Sharvell

Coal Heaver

Nelse Iverson

Coal Heaver

John Lauterbach

Coal Heaver

Louis P. Noros

Seaman

H.W. Leach

Seaman

Henry Wilson

Seaman

C.A. Görtz

Seaman

P.E. Johnson

Seaman

Edward Star

Seaman

H.D. Warren

Seaman

H.H. Kaack

Seaman

A.G. Kuehne

Seaman

F.E. Manson

Seaman

H.H. Erickson

Seaman

Adolph Dressler

Seaman

Charles Tong Sing

Seaman

Ah Sam

Seaman

Alexey

Hunter & dog driver

Aniguin

Hunter & dog driver


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Description of the instruments

[Paper insert:]

Description of the instruments used in making the meteorological observations recorded in the columns of the logbook


Barometer

The standard was a mercurial barometer made by Adie, London, No 1231, and was placed in the cabin. The entries in the logbook to and including midnight August 4th, 1880 are from reading of aneroid barometer N. 28051 which had been set by comparison with mercurial standard to a reading reduced to 32° Fahrenheit and placed in the port chart room.

From and after 3am August 5th, 1880 the entries in the log book are from direct readings of the standard mercurial barometer, Adie No 1231, and its attached thermometer.


Temperature.

The "Air Dry Bulb" was recorded from readings of standard mercurial thermometer No 4313, made by Green, New York, so long as the temperature was above the freezing point of the mercury of that instrument. At other times, the temperature was recorded from readings of spirit thermometers, uncolored or colored as marked in the log "clear" or "purple", and indicated by their numbers. All these thermometers were made by Green, New York.


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[Paper insert:]

Water Temperatures and Specific Gravities

The depth of water not being great, but one Casella-Miller thermometer was used which was attached to the lead line about one fathom above the lead. The number of the thermometer used is written in red ink abreast of the sounding. They were found upon comparison to agree with standard mercurial thermometer No 4313.

The temperature at a depth of two fathoms below the surface was obtained by allowing the water to enter the ship through one of the sea cocks in her bottom, (which sea cock was quite uniformly 12 feet below the surface) and after a short time, say a minute or two, filling a hydrometer cup with compared thermometer attached, and reading the height of the mercury therein.

Temperatures of surface water were obtained by immersing a compared thermometer in the first hole alongside the ship.


Water was brought up from near the bottom by a Sigsbee water cup attached to the lead line. Water from 2 fathoms below the surface, and from the surface, was obtained from the sea cock and fire hole as mentioned above.


The specific gravities were obtained from readings of a hydrometer marked "Tagliabue, New York. Specific gravity 60° F." of a scale ranging from 1.020 to 1.031, when the water was of a density within the scale. Otherwise the readings were of a more delicate hydrometer marked "Reinmann Baetz, 96 Fulton St. N.Y. specific gravity 60° F." Scale 1.000 to 1.040.


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[Paper insert:]

Wind Velocities

These were recorded from readings of an Anemometer marked

J. Green

Signal Service U.S.A

10

No 120

Until midnight August 4th, 1880 the readings were made every hour, but from that time forward the readings were made every three hours, and the difference in the register between observations was entered in the log as the number of "miles during the interval".


At all times the anemometer and thermometers for air temperature were exposed on the floe ice about 100 yards from the ship on her port quarter; the anemometer on a post and about 8 feet above the ice, and the thermometers in a Louvre-boarded box at least 4 feet above the ice.


Note. At the head of the page devoted to the "Record of the miscellaneous events of the day" there are frequently written the dates one in black ink and the other in red ink. It was not considered advisable to change the date for ship's purposes in crossing the 180th meridian of longitude; and therefore the old date was carried forward from day to day and the proper local date written under in red ink.


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29 July 1880

Lat 72.99

28 July 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 72° 59' 8"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 508 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 25 fathoms. Muddy bottom, a drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally gloomy and disagreeable. An almost steady fall of light snow all day, followed toward midnight by rain hail, and mist. Light S.W. breeze backing to S'd and S.S.E. during the afternoon and freshening to a moderate gale. A rapidly falling barometer and considerably increasing temperature accompanied the increase in wind velocities.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.0005 at 38°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.021 at 37°

24 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.026 at 37° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 19° 35' N.

Last quarter


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29 July 1880

Lat 73.04, Long -179.73

[Editor's note: The ship has crossed the 180th meridian to the east]

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 2' 40"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 179° 43' 45"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 288 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 25 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Cloudy and squally weather. Breezes from S.S.W. to south; steadily rising barometer and falling temperature. Snow squalls and passing showers of rain occurred frequently throughout the day.

An opening in the ice occurred about ½ a mile north of the ship and extending east and west with a width of about 30 yards.


The vessel being again east of the 180th meridian, the entry of a second date in red ink is discontinued.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 40°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0245 at 38°

24 ½ fathoms = 32° x – Specific gravity = 1.0261 at 38° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 22° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 413):

Mr. Dunbar, whose duties as ice-pilot are limited to daily visits to the crow's nest for a look at our surroundings, discovered this afternoon that a crack had occurred in the ice about half a mile north of us, and extending for a short distance east and west. Going out to examine he found it about fifty yards in extent, it being merely a separation of the old and heavy last winter's ice which surrounds us.



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30 July 1880

Lat 73.13

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 8'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 178 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 28 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N. x E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally cloudy and unpleasant. Fresh breezes from south and S. x W. with steady low barometer and uniform temperature. Squally during the forenoon. A steady fall of light snow from 2pm to midnight.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 42°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0257 at 41°

27 ½ fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0266 at 40.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 24° N.

Last quarter


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31 July 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 55 tons 68 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Fresh breeze from S. x W. and S.S.W. all day with slowly rising barometer and uniform temperature. Snow, mist and passing showers of rain during the forenoon, and snow with occasional mist during the afternoon.


Provisions condemned during the month

Carrots = 1 ¼ lbs spoiled

Beets = 1 ¼ lbs spoiled

Damsons = ¾ lbs spoiled

Roast mutton = 3 lbs spoiled

Oat meal = 124 lbs damaged by salt water

Rio coffee = 15 lbs damaged by salt water

Mutton broth = 4 lbs spoiled

Flour = 8 lbs damaged by salt water


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 39°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 39°

29 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 38.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 24° 32' N.

Last quarter



LOGS FOR AUGUST 1880


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1 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 2198 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am called "all hands to muster". Read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The Commanding Officer then inspected the ship and held divine service in the cabin.

Cloudy and gloomy weather with passing showers, fog. Snow and mist from time to time. Fresh southerly breeze dying out by 3pm and succeeded by light westerly and freshening N.W. wind. Steady barometer. Uniform temperature until midnight when a fall occurred.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 46.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 47°

29 fathoms = 32° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 47° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 24° N.

Last quarter


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2 August 1880

Lat 73.33, Long -178.60

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 20'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 178° 36'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 2088 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. x E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather cloudy but pleasant during the forenoon; bright and pleasant in the afternoon. Light northerly and westerly winds backing suddenly to S.W. at 10pm. Very nearly steady barometer, with unusually low temperature at the beginning and ending of the day.

An opening occurred in the ice about ¼ mile west of the ship, extending for a short distance, direction northerly.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 43°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 42.5°

30 fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 42° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 22° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 414 ff):

About 8.30 p.m. an opening occurred in the ice about one quarter mile west of the ship, and extending for a short distance in a north and south direction, and wide enough to steam the ship in.

Our humdrum existence is occasionally varied by finding shells, pieces of sponge, or bits of wood on the ice. These are being uncovered by the gradual melting of the snow and ice, and, of course, we cannot say how long they may have remained there or how they came there originally.



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3 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1978 lbs


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather rainy or snowy nearly all day. Freshening and unsteady southerly winds with rapidly falling barometer and increasing temperature.

Between 5 and 8pm a strong odor as of burning brush-wood filled the air, and from 7 to 10pm a very decided haze was observed. Whether there is any connection between the two circumstances remains to be investigated heretofore.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 43°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 43.5°

30 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 43.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 20° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 415):

Nothing seems to come of the ice opening mentioned yesterday, and the ice in general seems to be compact again in all directions.



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4 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1868 lbs


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to E. x S. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather gloomy. Sky overcast nearly all day. Light southerly and westerly winds with very low barometer, followed after noon by freshening northerly and westerly winds and rapidly rising barometer with decreasing temperature.

Water line on ship forward, 7 feet 1 inch; aft 12 feet 10 ½ inches – ship heeling 7° to starboard.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 45°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 45°

31 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 45.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 16° N.

Last quarter


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5 August 1880

Lat 73.36

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 21' 38"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1758 lbs


Max. temperature = 32.2°

Min. temperature = 28°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather gloomy and disagreeable. Brisk S.W. winds with slowly rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature. Squally and snowy in the afternoon.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 41°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 41.5°

32 fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 41° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 12° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 415):

Last night at midnight we ended a meteorological year of hourly observations, and, as a relief to all hands in making them, I ordered hereafter three-hourly readings of the instruments instead of hourly.



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6 August 1880

Lat 73.36, Long -177.25

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 21' 30"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 177° 14' 45"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.30pm E. 21° 30'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1648 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 28°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather gloomy and disagreeable during the forenoon; clear, bright and pleasant during the afternoon, until toward midnight when it began to rapidly cloud over. Fresh southerly and westerly winds backing to moderate southerly and easterly winds. A little snow fell at the beginning of the day.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 41°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 41°

32 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0265 at 41.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 7° N.

New moon


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7 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1538 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 28.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms (apparently hard bottom – lead clean) and a rapid drift to E.N.E. was indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather cloudy and gloomy. Moderate southerly veering to lighter northerly winds with rapidly rising barometer and falling temperature. Much fog and some rain in the middle of the day.

Water line on ships port side: forward 7 feet 1 ½ inches; aft 12 feet, 11 ¾ inches. Ship heeling 7° to starboard.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 45°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 45°

36 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0251 at 45° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 2° N.

New moon


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8 August 1880

Lat 73.38, Long -176.70

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 22' 55"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 41' 45"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1428 lbs


Max. temperature = 31.5°

Min. temperature = 23°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

Light unsteady (chiefly northerly and westerly) winds during the day with slightly rising barometer and markedly decreasing temperature. Light snow occasionally during the afternoon and a fog at midnight.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 33.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 46.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 46°

36 fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 45° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 3° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00072d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_022_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00072f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_022_1.jpg)


9 August 1880

Lat 73.41, Long -176.65

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 24' 32"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 39' 15"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1318 lbs


Max. temperature = 31°

Min. temperature = 21°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Light easterly and north-easterly airs, with partly cloudy and partly foggy weather alternating. Slowly falling barometer and low temperature.

A very high and heavy water sky between N.E. & S.E.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 43°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 42.5°

38 fathoms = 29.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0264 at 42.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 8° S.

New moon


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10 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1208 lbs


Max. temperature = 32°

Min. temperature = 28.2°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Gloomy disagreeable weather. Light northerly wind with much fog. Fluctuating barometer and temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 45°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0247 at 45°

37 fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 45° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 13° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000735: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_024_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000737: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_024_1.jpg)


11 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 1098 lbs


Max. temperature = 34.5°

Min. temperature = 21.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump. It is found that 1295 strokes of the bilge pump are now necessary each day to keep the ship free of water, whereas heretofore (and subsequent to July 15th) 240 strokes per diem were all that was required.

The ship is heeled 7° to starboard, and the water line is at 7 feet 0 ¾ inches forward and 13 feet 1 ¾ inches aft, and the increase of the amount of water coming into the ship is probably due to the melting of the ice at and around the injury to the stem. Measurements made of the thickness of ice at accessible localities show a diminution of 1 inch of the measurements recorded on the 13th, July.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Partially cloudy and foggy weather during the forenoon; thick and foggy during afternoon. Light northerly and westerly breeze veering to north-easterly breeze and light airs, and succeeded by a calm from 9pm to midnight. Very nearly steady barometer and increasing temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 44°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 44°

37 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 44° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 18° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 417):

Measurements of the thickness of the ice at accessible places show a diminution of one inch since July 13th; and it may so happen that the wasting away of that amount of ice (whether at the top, and so causing it to float higher, or at the bottom, and accomplishing the same effect) has uncovered the damaged stem and presented a freer access to the water.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000739: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_025_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00073b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_025_1.jpg)


12 August 1880

Lat 73.34, Long -176.46

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 20' 11"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 27' 23"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 988 lbs


Max. temperature = 35°

Min. temperature = 23°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally bright and pleasant until midnight. Light westerly airs backing to southward, with rising barometer and low temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 42.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0245 at 42°

35 fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0265 at 42° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 21° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00073d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_026_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00073f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_026_1.jpg)


13 August 1880

Lat 73.32, Long -176.23

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 19'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 13' 45"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 878 lbs


Max. temperature = 36.7°

Min. temperature = 23°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Rainbow at 10pm. Sunset at 10.20pm. This is the first day that it has been possible to see the sun at setting, since his again going below our horizon.

Light breezes followed by faint airs, backing from the S'd to N.E. with falling barometer and increasing temperature. A ~ fog during the forenoon. Very heavy dark sky to southward toward midnight.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 44.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 44°

37 ¾ fathoms = 32° x – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 44° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 23° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000741: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_027_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000743: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_027_1.jpg)


14 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 768 lbs


Max. temperature = 33°

Min. temperature = 31.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very slight drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Overcast and gloomy weather, with mist, drizzling rain and fog. Light northerly and easterly airs with falling barometer and uniform temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 44.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 44.5°

37 fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0264 at 44.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 24° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000745: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_028_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000747: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_028_1.jpg)


15 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 658 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 31.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am Commanding Officer inspected the ship, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

Thick foggy weather. Light northerly and easterly airs with steady barometer and uniform temperature. Passing rain showers between 10 and 11pm. Very heavy water sky to southward at midnight.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 45°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 44.5°

38 ½ fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 44.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 23° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 417 ff):

Our mild weather continues, and so does the fog. It is surprising to see how this latter cuts away the ice. The full sun of June 21st did not do half the execution that to-day's fog accomplished. The ice seems actually to be rotting away. The surface is soft and spongy, and fully honey-combed; and but for the fact that there remains ice varying in thickness from two to twenty feet, there is no reason why we should not resume our voyage. The ship is still held affectionately by ice gripping her nearly down to her keel, and by its attempt to rise, heeling her over 7 ½° to starboard. Here and there on either beam, holes varying in size from one to six feet extend down through the ice, and at a distance of one half mile on the starboard beam, and one mile on the port beam, there is a narrow lane of water (starboard with a W. wind, port with an E. wind, neither with any other), which serves to make our immediate vicinity an island; so that if we could get to this lane we might have the pleasure of sailing around a circle, were we not meanwhile crushed by the ice coming together, for beyond the lane in any direction is ice of the cheerful and consoling thickness of twenty to forty feet.

At midnight a remarkably heavy water-sky showed itself to the southward.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000749: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_029_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00074b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_029_1.jpg)


16 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 548 lbs


Max. temperature = 34.5°

Min. temperature = 31.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Light easterly breezes with steady barometer and nearly uniform temperature. Much fog and mist from noon to midnight.

Carpenters engaged in altering frames of deck house in anticipation of the new plan of housing proposed for next winter, i.e. extending the deck house to the bows.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.004 at 42°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 42°

38 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 41° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 21° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00074d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_030_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00074f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_030_1.jpg)


17 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 438 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 29.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight W.S.W. drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather gloomy, foggy and misty. Light northerly and easterly breeze growing very faint and at times dying away entirely. Slowly falling barometer and uniform temperature.

Carpenter continues work of altering frames &c of deck house.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.004 at 43°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 43°

37 fathoms = 30.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 43° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 17° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 420 ff):

Our water temperatures and soundings taken daily give no encouragement; the surface has generally a temperature of 34°, due, of course, to its exposure to the sun and retention for a long time of the heat imparted. Two fathoms below the surface the temperature is 31°, and at the bottom 30°. At a temperature of 7 ½° above the freezing point of salt-water, the lower ice cannot melt rapidly. On the surface, the sun's rays, or the cutting fog, or the warmer water at the edges, make a wasted and rotten material; but under water the ice has the same flinty hardness it had during midwinter. And it is of such irregular and varying thickness that no idea can be formed of its age or origin. We know that last November, when we were squeezed out of the heavy ice into our present location, we were in open water, — a lake, so to speak. By careful measurement we know that ice formed on this lake to a thickness of five feet four inches by February 4th. Then its thickness could no longer be accurately measured, because of under-riding floes; but it is reasonable to suppose that it got a thickness of seven feet. On the 13th July that ice was five feet in thickness; to-day it is three feet five inches thick. Either we have had our summer, or are yet to have it, which latter sounds absurd on this 18th day of August. If the former surmise is correct, three feet seven inches may be taken as the thaw of one summer, and the remaining: three feet five inches will form a basis for next winter. Already our little ponds have frozen over during the night, and remain frozen until noon of the next day. Thus much being said of ice which we have seen grow around us, how are we to discuss ice which is twelve feet, twenty-two feet, twenty-four feet, thirty feet, and forty feet in constant thickness? We see ice which has been piled up in confused masses twenty-four feet above the surface of the water, and can but guess at its thickness below. We drop a lead down to a projecting tongue twelve feet, and think we have the thickness of that floe at all events; but lo! a little further and we see another projecting tongue, or perhaps a third, or when we get to twenty-two feet we cannot obtain an up and down sounding by reason of surface irregularity.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000751: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_031_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000753: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_031_1.jpg)


18 August 1880

Lat 73.42

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 25' 15"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 328 lbs


Max. temperature = 40°

Min. temperature = 31°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 44 fathoms. Mud, gravel and fine sand. A very slight to S.W. drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

About 9.30am Heinrich H. Kaack (seaman) while passing along the berth deck of the ship fell, sticking his elbow on the edge of a hatch cover, and sustained a fracture of the right olecranon process.

Weather sultry and gloomy. Foggy nearly all day. Light southerly and easterly airs during forenoon, and an absolute calm from noon to midnight. Slowly rising barometer and unusually high temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35.2° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 46°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 46°

43 fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 46° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 12° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 421):

Another day of ice scenery without any perceptible change in our surroundings.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000755: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_032_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000757: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_032_1.jpg)


19 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 218 lbs


Max. temperature = 34.5°

Min. temperature = 31.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Mud and fine sand, a drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

A bear 6 feet 6 ½ inches long and 4 feet 7 inches in girth was shot about two miles east of the ship and brought aboard.

Weather cloudy and gloomy with very light northerly airs, slowly rising barometer and uniform temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 45°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0245 at 44.5°

39 fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0264 at 44.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 7° S.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000759: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_033_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00075b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_033_1.jpg)


20 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 54 tons 108 lbs


Max. temperature = 33.5°

Min. temperature = 32°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather cloudy and gloomy except for a short time in the afternoon where the sun was visible. Light northerly and westerly airs, with rising barometer and uniform temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 46.5°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0238 at 46.5°

39 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 46.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 1° S.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00075d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_034_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00075f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_034_1.jpg)


21 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 2238 lbs


Max. temperature = 35°

Min. temperature = 31°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather mild and pleasant (though cloudy) in the forenoon; foggy and misty from 3pm to midnight. Very light and variable airs with rising barometer.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35.5° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 42°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 41°

37 ½ fathoms = 32° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 41° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 4° N.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000761: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_035_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000763: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_035_1.jpg)


22 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 2128 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 31.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am Commanding Officer inspected the ship, after which divine service was read in the cabin.

A bear came within 300 yards of the starboard quarter during the afternoon and escaped unhurt.

Weather generally foggy during the forenoon; clearing a very little in the early afternoon; and ending with the sky entirely overcast. Light southerly airs, rising barometer and very pleasant temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.0015 at 49°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0238 at 48.5°

36 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 48° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 10° N.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000765: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_036_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000767: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_036_1.jpg)


23 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 2018 lbs


Max. temperature = 36.7°

Min. temperature = 32°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. x S. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Foggy and misty weather during the forenoon, and except for a few moments in the afternoon the sky was entirely overcast until midnight. Light N.E. air slowly falling barometer and pleasant temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 46°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0239 at 45°

36 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 45° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 14° N.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000769: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_037_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00076b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_037_1.jpg)


24 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1908 lbs


No observations


Max. temperature = 35.5°

Min. temperature = 31.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Generally foggy and misty weather, with a little drizzling rain and snow at 6am. Light northerly airs, slightly falling barometer and uniform temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 46°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0237 at 46.5°

39 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0261 at 47° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 18° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 428):

All reports seem to agree in pronouncing the ice in a wasted and disintegrated condition, needing only a fresh blow to send it into blocks and pieces.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd00076d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_038_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00076f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_038_1.jpg)


25 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1798 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 31°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Crew engaged during the day in sawing through the ice surrounding the stern in order to get up and examine the propeller. After sawing through ice varying in thickness from 4 ½ feet to 8 ½ feet, making a cut on each side, forward of the mizzen mast, extending out from the ships side, the floe suddenly broke in two pieces at about 2.30pm and floating to the surface was dragged clear of the ship. This ice had been clinging to the ship and was about 2 feet under the surface of the water while being sawed.

The ship immediately went down in the water aft 7 inches and came up forward ½ inch; the water level being now at a height of 7 feet 2 inches on the stem, and 13 feet 9 ½ inches on the rudder post. The heel is now 8 ¾° to starboard having been increased only ¼° by the change of immersion. The ship is yet firmly held by ice which extends from the main rigging on the port side around the bows and to the after part of the fore-rigging on the starboard side, and which where possible to measure is found to have a thickness of 10 feet 11 inches. It probably extends under her keel forming a cradle; and though it would perhaps be possible to haul the ship astern into a small pool of clear water it is not attempted for fear of increasing the facility with which water might enter through the damaged stem and so require additional labor or even steam pumping to keep the ship free, without a single lead of water in any direction accessible to the ship, her being navigated is impossible, and there would be nothing gained by her being floated into a small lake.

Hoisted the screw and found it in perfect order, the blades being neither bent nor twisted in all our encounters with the ice. From some causes, (perhaps the formation and lodgment of ice in the sleeve of the deadwood) the shaft could be revolved only a quarter of a turn; this will be overhauled by the engineer’s force. Lowered the screw again to its place.

Light north-easterly airs with slight fall of barometer and pleasant temperature. Fog, mist and occasional drizzling rain.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 44.5°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 44.5°

36 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 44° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 21° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 428):

The ice surrounding the ship's stern had a thickness of nine feet in some places, and its surface was about two feet under water.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000771: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_039_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000773: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_039_1.jpg)


26 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1688 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 31°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather foggy and misty all day. Light easterly airs with slightly falling barometer and uniform temperature.

Crew engaged during the day in sawing up into convenient blocks and removing the ice which was cut away yesterday from around the stern. Engineer’s force engaged in seeking the cause for not being able to revolve the screw shaft yesterday. Uncoupled the engine from the line shaft and found that the engine moved readily by means of the jacking-screw. Coupled the engine and removed the packing from the stuffing box of the stern bearing until the water ran freely through the box. Tried to jack the engine and shaft coupled together but without much effect. The difficulty seemed to be in the stern pipe or sleeve as there was noise as of grinding in the pipe, and supposing it to be occasioned by ice, the stuffing box was so arranged as to admit during the night a small steady stream of water to aid in thawing.

At 1.30pm a bear coming near to the ship on her port side was seen by the dogs and chased into a small pool when he was held at bay until killed by Mr. Nindemann. At 2.30 a bear and two cubs were seen approaching the starboard quarter, crossing leads and ice until about 300 yards from the ship, when they seemed disposed to retreat. A volley was then fired at them wounding the bear and one cub, as could be determined by the trails of blood. Though immediately chased by officers, men and dogs, and the second cub wounded, all three bears managed to escape by swimming across leads, (which for men required long detours,) and thus getting out of range.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.002 at 41°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 40.5°

35 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 40° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 23° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 434):

Lest I have not mentioned it heretofore, I mention here that Mr. Collins discovered some magnetic particles (meteoric iron) in a lot of sand and gravel found on the ice two miles to the eastward by Mr. Dunbar.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000775: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_040_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000777: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_040_1.jpg)


27 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 120 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1578 lbs


Max. temperature = 35°

Min. temperature = 31.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Foggy weather all day. Light easterly airs with slowly falling barometer and uniform temperature.

The engineer’s force were engaged in work of clearing the sleeve in the stern deadwood. Removed all the packing from the stuffing box of stern bearing, allowing free ingress to the water. After the first rush, it was found that the engines and shaft coupled together and connected with the screw could be revolved without difficulty, the ice being carried off. Repacked the stuffing-box of stern bearing. The engines and all their dependencies are in perfect condition for service.

The crew were engaged in sawing into convenient pieces the broken ice floes and removing them from alongside the ship.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.0015 at 46°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0243 at 46°

36 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0247 at 46° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 23° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000779: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_041_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00077b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_041_1.jpg)


28 August 1880

Lat 73.62, Long -177.23

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 135 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 37'

Longitude by chronometer W. 177° 13'

Two lines of position 3 and 4pm


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1223 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 31°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 36 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather foggy and gloomy all day. Light easterly and south-easterly airs with rising barometer. Drizzling rain at 3am.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 36° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 53°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0234 at 53°

35 ½ fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0239 at 53° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 24° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00077d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_042_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00077f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_042_1.jpg)


29 August 1880

Lat 73.68, Long -177.22

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 41'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 177° 13'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1213 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 28.2°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

Foggy and gloomy weather with occasional mist or drizzling rain. Light south-easterly airs freshening to light breezes with rising followed by steady barometer. Low temperature at the beginning of the day.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 50°

2 fathoms = 31.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0236 at 49.5°

36 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0237 at 49.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 23° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 437 ff):

The outlook from the crow's nest is dreary enough. Ice, ice, ice! In the little basin or valley in which we are numerous rivulets and pond-holes may be seen; but beyond what was once our encircling mountain ridge twenty to forty feet high, and now a ragged mass of confused chunks, is a seemingly endless ice desert, with a black pool here and there, but no leads, no channels, no avenues of advance or retreat.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000781: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_043_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000783: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_043_1.jpg)


30 August 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 145 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 1068 lbs


Max. temperature = 34°

Min. temperature = 26.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally foggy throughout the day, but clearing away toward 10pm rendering visible at midnight the Moon, Jupiter and Aldebaran above a line of fog.

Light southerly and easterly breezes with slightly falling barometer and a very marked decrease in the temperature.

Carpenters engaged in alterations to deck house and in repairing sleds.

Small flocks of Phalaropes flying to S'd & W'd.

Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 46°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0237 at 46°

36 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 46° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 21° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 438 ff):

Our little lakes and rivulets were covered with ice at midnight, and a white frost was deposited on all instruments at the observatory.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000785: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_044_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000787: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_044_1.jpg)


31 August 1880

Lat 73.77, Long -176.81

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 46' 6"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 48' 45"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 4.30pm E. 22° 4'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 958 lbs


Max. temperature = 36.2°

Min. temperature = 25.2°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to north being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Remarkably bright and pleasant weather. Light S.E. breeze with slowly falling barometer and unusually low temperature at the beginning and ending of the day.

Ice ¾ of an inch in thickness formed on the ponds in our neighborhood, during the low temperatures of last night. Sunset at 8.15. At 11.15 a faint auroral arch through zenith from E. to W., and at midnight pulsating curtain-patches from W. to E. about 20° in altitude.

Carpenters engaged in work on deck house and in repairing sledges. Engineer’s force engaged in shifting 8 tons of coal from starboard to port.


Provisions condemned during the month

14 lbs beef soup – spoiled

12 lbs mutton broth – spoiled

5 lbs roast beef – spoiled

2 ½ lbs flour – injured by salt water

Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.003 at 44.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0240 at 44.5°

38 fathoms = 32° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 44.5° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 17° 24' N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 1 p. 439):

A cheerful fall of temperature occurred during the night, and in consequence we find ice three quarters of an inch thick over all our ponds this morning.




LOGS FOR SEPTEMBER 1880


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000789: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_045_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00078b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_045_1.jpg)


1 September 1880

Lat 73.78

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 46' 54"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 848 lbs


Max. temperature = 36.5°

Min. temperature = 24°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. x N. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 9.25am the ship suddenly righted to an even keel and moved astern about two feet, settling until the water level was 8 feet 4 inches at the stem and at 13 feet 5 ¾ inches at the rudder-post. The stem being 16 inches clear of the groove in the floe against which it had been resting, it was supposed that the ship was afloat fore and aft; and an ice claw was carried out astern to the ice, and by an attached hawser it was attempted to haul the ship astern clear of the large masses of ice surrounding her bows. After parting one hawser and only turning the ship one point in azimuth without moving her otherwise, it was found that she was still held by the ice under her keel forward, a measuring rod striking hard ice at a depth of 7 feet 4 inches below the water level. A second and larger hawser was then got out and hove on with the capstan without effect. An ice saw was then employed to saw through a large piece of ice against the starboard bow, (and presumably extending below and under the keel) of a thickness of 11 feet.

After sawing through 5 or 6 feet, the leak (which had been carefully watched from the first movement of the ship) was found to increase and all sawing and attempts to drag the ship astern were at once discontinued. The gate in the extra bulkhead in the fore peak had been closed promptly at 9.35am and the increase of water made its way aft among the frames between ceiling and planking and under flooring of the fore peak.

The leak now requires 3200 strokes of the hand bilge pump per 24 hours against 1295 strokes on the 11th August. At 8pm the ship was on nearly an even keel with the water level at 8 feet 10 ¾ inches on the stem and 13 feet 4 ½ inches on the rudder post.

In the afternoon the carpenters were engaged at work on the deck house and in repairing sledges.

Weather bright and pleasant during the forenoon but foggy during the afternoon. Light easterly and S.E. airs with steady barometer.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 44°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0238 at 44°

38 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 44° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 13° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 411 ff):

At last we are on an even keel! This morning at 9.35 the ship suddenly righted, and moved astern about two feet. It was done very quietly and without shock, except to a dog who was on the gang-plank, and was suddenly tumbled, to his surprise, on to the ice below. Thin ice had formed around our free part to the thickness of nearly an inch, and the cracking and breaking of this film (?) was the only accompaniment to our movement. One or two large chunks of ice rose to the surface on the port side, and then all was still.


By previous orders, at the first movement Sweetman ran down in the fore peak and closed the opening in the extra bulkhead built last January. We feared that on taking the water again our leak might largely increase, but we found for the time no difference. The water-level on the ship was at the height of eight feet four inches on the stem, and thirteen feet five and three fourths inches on the rudder-post. Believing that the ship was fairly afloat (her stem being sixteen inches from the groove in which it had been resting), we carried an ice-claw to the floe astern, placing it on our port quarter, and, attaching a hawser, tried heaving with the capstan. To our surprise, beyond swinging her bow a little to starboard, perhaps a point, the ship was immovable. Thinking the ice on either bow was holding her, we took the ice-claw in a line right astern, and hove again until we parted the hawser. Then we went to examining the ice around her bows. The groove in which her stem had rested was in plain sight, and a crack in that floe extended right ahead. Right against the bows on either side there was water, but on reaching down a measuring rod under the starboard cat-head Chipp found it strike on ice at a depth of seven feet four inches. Evidently, then, her keel and forefoot were yet held in a cradle. Desiring to get a little away from the heavy floe which had damaged us last winter, a larger hawser was got out right astern and hove on, but without effect. The ice-saw, worked by a rope from the fore yard, was then brought into play, and put down a hole which we found in the cradle-piece, which, with its other part eleven feet in thickness, we commenced to saw through six feet, dinner time came and we stopped. A careful watch had been kept of the leak, and it was now found that more water was coming in than formerly. I was anxious naturally to get the ship afloat properly, but of course I did not want to do so at the cost of materially increasing the leak while there was no chance to navigate her. Upon reflection, I concluded to leave well enough (or bad enough) alone, and accordingly all sawing and hauling was suspended.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd00078d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_046_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00078f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_046_1.jpg)


2 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 738 lbs


Max. temperature = 33°

Min. temperature = 26.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. x N. indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Sky generally overcast during the day. A fog prevailing during the forenoon and snow falling in the afternoon.

Carpenters engaged in work on the deck house and in repairing sleds. Engineer's force occupied in shifting coal from starboard to port.

The surface of the ponds in our neighborhood remains covered with new ice about an inch in thickness. The lead extending across the bows about 1 mile ahead of the ship is open for a width of about 100 yards.

Numerous small flocks of birds (Phalaropes?) coming from N.E.

Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 44°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0238 at 44°

38 ½ fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0240 at 45° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 9° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 444):

The usual fog in the forenoon, and in the afternoon until midnight an almost steady fall of very light snow. In one day we seem to have jumped into winter. All our lakes and rivulets are covered with ice an inch in thickness, and that in turn being hidden by snow, the general view is as cold and cheerless as possible. While we had such mild temperatures, and the ice was in a soft and loose condition, how anxiously we hoped for a gale of wind to break upon us to give everything a good shaking up and, perhaps, release us from our fetters. But now that everything is beginning to freeze fast again our chances of liberation seem infinitesimally small.

Mr. Collins on returning from the lead, about two miles ahead of the ship, reports that it is about one

hundred yards in width.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000791: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_047_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000793: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_047_1.jpg)


3 September 1880

Lat 73.87, Long -176.85

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 52'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 51'


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 628 lbs


Max. temperature = 31.5°

Min. temperature = 25°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally cloudy, with snow in the middle of the day. Calms, and after noon, light northerly breezes. Slightly rising barometer and low temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 45.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0238 at 45.5°

38 fathoms = 31° x – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 46° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 4° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000795: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_048_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000797: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_048_1.jpg)


4 September 1880

Long -176.99

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun no observation

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 59' 15"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 518 lbs


Max. temperature = 31°

Min. temperature = 24.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather generally gloomy and disagreeable. Light freshening to moderate N.W. breeze with rising barometer and low but uniform temperature. Occasional falls of light snow throughout the day.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 35° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 52°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0239 at 52°

37 fathoms = 31.5° x – Specific gravity = 1.0258 at 52° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 2° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000799: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_049_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00079b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_049_1.jpg)


5 September 1880

Lat 73.75

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 45'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 408 lbs


Max. temperature = 28.5°

Min. temperature = 24.7°


The pumping is done by the wind mill, and, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to south being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

At 10am called "all hands to muster". Read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer and divine service was performed in the cabin.

Moderate northerly and westerly breezes with steady barometer and uniform temperature. Snow in the early morning and from 3pm to midnight.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34° – Specific gravity = 1.0025 at 46.5°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 46.5°

38 fathoms = 30° x – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 46° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 7° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00079d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_050_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00079f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_050_1.jpg)


6 September 1880

Lat 73.68, Long -177.20

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 41' 35"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 177° 12' 15"


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 398 lbs


Max. temperature = 27°

Min. temperature = 17°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps which are worked to prevent them freezing during the prevailing low temperature.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Moderate N.W. breezes backing to S.W. and growing light. Slightly falling followed a steady rising barometer. Sudden fall in temperature in the afternoon with a change of wind to S.W. Snow before noon, fog and snow after it.

At 10am sounds of cracking and breaking of young ice were heard from the S.W., the ice to the N.E. of the ship and about 800 yards distant being in a state of motion about the same time.

Carpenters engaged in putting up the deck house in its new place. Crew occupied in thrumming a spare topsail for possible use around the stem and under the fore-foot.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 34.5° – Specific gravity = 1.001 at 44°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 44°

36 fathoms = 29° x – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 44° x Miller-Casella No 24403


Moon 12° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 446):

At ten p.m. the effect of the changed wind was heard in the motion of the young ice to southwest, which split and cracked with the old familiar noise as the heavy ice got under way. Mr. Collins, on coming in from the lead to the northeast, reported the ice in motion about eight hundred yards from the ship. Our trouble may commence earlier this year than last, therefore.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007a1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_051_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007a3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_051_1.jpg)


7 September 1880

Lat 73.67

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 40' 19"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 110 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 188 lbs


Max. temperature = 27°

Min. temperature = 16.2°


The pumping is done by the wind mill and (in order to prevent the pumps freezing) occasionally by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift being indicated by the lead line. Lowered and hauled the dredge with no result; and in consequence of the low temperature the hauling of the dredge and taking of water temperatures are for the present discontinued.

Hoisted out the steam cutter and placed her at the cutter's davits on the port side; the cutter being shifted to the dinghy's davits after the metallic dingy had been lowered on the ice.

The closing-in of the deck house continues. The thrumming of the topsail made ready for the fore foot is completed.

Weather changing somewhat about noon and midnight, but generally cloudy and dull. A moderate S.W. breeze dies away about 7am and is succeeded by the freshening northerly wind. Barometer rises steadily, and after noon the temperature falls to an uncomfortable extent.

Fires were started in the stoves of cabin and berth deck during the afternoon.

The ice on the edges of the old lead at one time making our floe an island, was in motion to the S.W. of the ship this afternoon.


Moon 17° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007a5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_052_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007a7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_052_1.jpg)


8 September 1880

Lat 73.66

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 39' 36"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 145 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 53 tons 43 lbs


Max. temperature = 25.7°

Min. temperature = 12°


The pumping is done occasionally by the wind mill, but generally by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

The surface of the ponds in our neighborhood are covered with ice 3 inches in thickness. This is the result of the low temperature since the evening of August 30th.

Carpenters engaged in closing in after end of deck house. Crew engaged in stopping up running rigging clear of the rail.

Light airs from N.W. backing to S.S.W. and rapidly freshening to a stiff breeze. Steadily falling barometer and increasing temperature. Faint rainbow in N.W. at 6am. Weather bright and pleasant during the forenoon, dull and gloomy in the afternoon.


Moon 20° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 447):

All the ponds are covered long since with ice, and one can walk all around our neighborhood without getting his feet wet. I had a piece cut out and measured to-day, and it was found to be three inches thick. This is formed since the low temperature of the evening of August 30th.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007a9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_053_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007ab: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_053_1.jpg)


9 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Using melted ice

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 145 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 2138 lbs


Max. temperature = 33.5°

Min. temperature = 26°


The pumping is done, as required, by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.E. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy and gloomy all day. Brisk S.S.W. winds moderating after noon, and at midnight veering to W.S.W. Steady barometer and increasing temperature.

Ice ¾ of an inch in thickness formed on a small space of open water since 9am yesterday.

The surface ice being no longer free enough from salt to be used for drinking and cooking, the steam cutter's boiler is set to work distilling in the afternoon.

The liquid compasses were taken out of the binnacles and stored below; it being noticed that the spirit contained in them was oozing out over the glasses.

The carpenters are engaged in closing in and roofing the deck house.


Moon 23° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 447 ff):

Ice three fourths of an inch in thickness formed since nine a.m. yesterday over the water which was left when the three-inch block was cut out.


We have again arrived at the end of sufficiently pure ice for cooking and drinking, and as I was regretfully obliged to order the resumption of distilling, the steam-cutter's boiler was again called into use. A large patch of crimson snow was found about one half mile ahead of the ship, and a handkerchiefful brought in by Mr. Dunbar. I have had a quantity of it put away in a jar for carrying to the United States. Our liquid compasses seem very sensitive to cold weather. This morning the spirit was found oozing out around the edges of the glass covers. I had the compasses removed from the binnacles and stowed below.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007ad: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_054_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007af: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_054_1.jpg)


10 September 1880

Lat 73.67, Long -176.92

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 40' 15"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 55' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 1918 lbs


Max. temperature = 33°

Min. temperature = 19°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear about noon and midnight, cloudy and gloomy at other times. Mist and snow in the forenoon; fog and snow in the evening. Light S.W. breeze veering to north, and dying out at 8.30pm, with a light southerly breeze springing up toward midnight. Rising barometer and (except during the calm) uniform temperature.

Carpenters engaged in roofing in the deck house.


Moon 24° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007b1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_055_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007b3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_055_1.jpg)


11 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 330 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 1588 lbs


Max. temperature = 33°

Min. temperature = 27°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather gloomy and disagreeable throughout the day. Much fog prevailed. Freshening winds from S.S.W. until noon, followed by moderating veering breezes.


Moon 24° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007b5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_056_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007b7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_056_1.jpg)


12 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 150 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 180 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 1408 lbs


Max. temperature = 31.5°

Min. temperature = 26.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather gloomy and disagreeable. Light S.S.W. breeze with falling barometer and uniform temperature. At 10.30pm a faint auroral arch was visible passing through zenith and extending from N.E. to S.W.


Moon 22° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007b9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_057_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007bb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_057_1.jpg)


13 September 1880

Lat 73.67, Long -176.51

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 40' 27"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 30' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 185 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 1223 lbs


Max. temperature = 30°

Min. temperature = 18.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

The day commences with light S.S.W. breezes with mist and light snow. Clearing somewhat as day advances the wind veers, becomes squally, and finally settles at W.N.W. with dark and gloomy weather and threatening sky in S.E.

Carpenters engaged in finishing the roof of the deck house, while the crew were occupied in spreading over and lacing down a tent awning and spare topsail.


Moon 18° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007bd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_058_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007bf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_058_1.jpg)


14 September 1880

Lat 73.66

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 39 27"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun no observation


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 185 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 1038 lbs


Max. temperature = 24.7°

Min. temperature = 14.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally gloomy during the forenoon with light westerly breezes dying away to a calm by noon. In the afternoon weather clears, and a light S.E. breeze springs up which backs to E.N.E. by midnight, freshening somewhat. Steadily falling barometer and decreasing temperature.

The moon was on the southern horizon at 8pm and at the same time auroral flashes extended from the eastern horizon toward the zenith. At midnight the sky in the S.E. horizon was so brightly lighted by an aurora as to resemble an approaching daylight; while occasional successive green and red flashes brilliantly, changed the appearance of daylight to a resemblance of effects produced by burning signal lights.

Carpenters engaged in building porch around galley house on deck; and the crew were employed in nailing canvas on the sides of the deck house and their continuation, the bulwarks and bows.


Moon 14° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007c1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_059_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007c3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_059_1.jpg)


15 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 185 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 853 lbs


Max. temperature = 19.5°

Min. temperature = 9.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Clean lead. A drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Moderate N.E. wind backing to fresh W.N.W. gale with driving snow storm. Slowly falling followed by rapidly rising barometer, and low temperature. At 5pm the snow fall ceased but the air was kept full of clouds of drift flying before the wind.

Broke out the forward store room and restored it, after getting all the pemmican up and in the deck house. Carpenters work suspended by the stormy weather.

At 9pm lunar halo of great brilliancy with colors. At 9.30 an auroral curtain arch south of zenith 30° in altitude extending from S.E. to N.W., which by 11 had crossed the zenith and descended to 20° from the northern horizon.


Moon 9° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007c5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_060_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007c7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_060_1.jpg)


16 September 1880

Lat 73.61, Long -176.70

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 36' 19"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 42'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 598 lbs


Max. temperature = 14.5°

Min. temperature = 7.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Strong westerly winds keep the air filled with drifting snow throughout the day. Otherwise the weather was bright and pleasant with low temperature and steadily rising barometer.

After 8pm bright moonlight and starlight with brilliant lunar halo. At 10.15 faint auroral arches to northward extending from east to west, at altitudes of 60° and 30° respectively. At midnight faint auroral arch south of zenith and 60° in altitude extending from E. to W.

Carpenters engaged in building sheltering porch around galley house on deck.


Moon 3° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007c9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_061_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007cb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_061_1.jpg)


17 September 1880

Lat 73.50, Long -176.55

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 30' 12"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 33' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 343 lbs


Max. temperature = 15.7°

Min. temperature = 6°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally pleasant though at times fog and snow hid the sky from view. Light westerly backing to freshening easterly breezes, with steady followed by falling barometer, and increasing temperature.

Carpenters engaged in building porch around galley house on deck.


Moon 2° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 451):

Occasional fog indicating ice openings, soon turning into snow.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007cd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_062_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007cf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_062_1.jpg)


18 September 1880

Lat 73.53, Long -176.62

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 31' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 37' 15"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 3.30pm E. 22° 10'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 52 tons 88 lbs


Max. temperature = 22°

Min. temperature = 3.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pumps.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and pleasant. Fresh easterly wind at the beginning of the day, rapidly veering and growing light as the barometer quickly rises. Unusually low temperature.

The "lead" extending across the bows at a distance of about 2 miles is opening during the forenoon.


Moon 7° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 451):

A cheerful little fall of temperature to 3.7° makes this day exceptionally disagreeable, and seems to make assurance doubly sure that we are frozen in for another winter. Not a vestige is left of the many little ponds and streams which such a short time ago might be seen in our neighborhood; on the contrary, what with snow-drifts, and the freezing over of all water, one could readily believe that water had never been here at all.

The lead two miles ahead of the ship (southeast by south) is opening again, and, being visited by our hunting parties, two seals are brought in.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007d1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_063_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007d3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_063_1.jpg)


19 September 1880

Lat 73.54, Long -176.72

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 32' 10"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 43' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 2073 lbs


Max. temperature = 19°

Min. temperature = 12°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally clear and pleasant in the middle of the day, gloomy with light snow in the early morning, and dark and foggy for the remainder. Light S.W. airs veering and dying out by 3pm, followed by light northerly airs until midnight. Steadily rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Moon 12° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 454 ff):

Weather generally clear and pleasant from nine a.m. to three p.m., cloudy and dull the remainder. In the early morning light snow, and after three p.m. fog — resulting from a reopening of the old lead which made our floe an island. I am very much afraid that our expenditure of fuel this winter will be much greater than last winter. We are coming to much fine dusty stuff, a Nanaimo coal, which burns like powder, and requires a large quantity to generate heat. Last winter we had much anthracite coal in our daily issue, and that lasted longer and did better work.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007d5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_064_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007d7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_064_1.jpg)


20 September 1880

Lat 73.52, Long -176.97

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 31' 6"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 58' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 220 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 1853 lbs


Max. temperature = 17.5°

Min. temperature = 14.7°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the quarter deck bilge pump until 5.30pm. After 5.30pm, the gates in the forward water tight bulkhead are closed, and the greater part of the water coming into the ship is pumped out by hand at the forward spar deck bilge pump in the deck house; while such water as filters through the water tight bulkhead or under it aft into the fire room is pumped out from time to time by the steam cutter's boiler driving the altered main engine bilge pump.

This change in the manner of pumping is rendered necessary by the risk of freezing and bursting the quarter deck bilge pumps if kept longer in use.

The steam cutters boiler is also used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Except for a little clearing in the middle of the day the weather is generally cloudy and dull. Light north-easterly wind backing to fresher north-westerly wind which continued at midnight. Steadily rising barometer and uniform temperature.

Carpenters engaged in building porch outside of deck house door.


Moon 17° N.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007d9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_065_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007db: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_065_1.jpg)


21 September 1880

Lat 73.41, Long -176.90

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 24' 37"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 53' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 1598 lbs


Max. temperature = 15.5°

Min. temperature = 1.5°


The pumping forward is done as required by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, while such water as filters aft into the fire room is pumped out by the steam cutters boiler driving the altered main engine bilge pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is also used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright, clear and pleasant. Light W.N.W. breezes backing to S.W. and dying away to faint airs, with nearly steady barometer and very marked fall in temperature. At midnight the sky was absolutely cloudless, while bright moonlight and starlight made up for the absence of the sun. A bright red flush was visible on the northern horizon. At the same time there was visible an irregular auroral curtain-arch 15° in altitude above the S.E. horizon, and extending from N.E. to S.W. At its S.W. end it spread out into large patches. Showing a most brilliant green light.

Carpenters employed in finishing porch outside of deck house door.

A fog bank rested on the S.W. horizon during the afternoon.


Moon 20° N.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007dd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_066_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007df: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_066_1.jpg)


22 September 1880

Lat 73.38, Long -176.62

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 23'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 37'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 305 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 1293 lbs


Max. temperature = 20.5°

Min. temperature = 0.5°


The pumping is done as required by hand at the forward spar deck bilge pump. The engineer’s force is employed in remaking the Babbitt metal and plunger from the bilge pump attached to main engine and replacing the piston belonging to it; and in otherwise arranging the said pump so that it may be worked by hand, the additional amount of fuel required to work it by the steam cutter's boiler and engine being considered too great for our present supply.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant at times, but frequently a thick fog prevails. Almost calm during the forenoon, and light northerly and easterly airs during the afternoon. Slightly rising barometer and rapidly increasing temperature.

Carpenters engaged in securing feet padding to forward side of galleys house on spar deck.


Moon 23° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 458):

To-day Melville changed back our main engine bilge-pump to a piston-pump as before, and arranged it so that it could be worked by hand. To use the steam-cutter's boiler for pumping as well as distilling requires more coal than I think we can afford.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007e1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_067_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007e3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_067_1.jpg)


23 September 1880

Lat 73.42, Long -176.67

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at noon Sun N. 73° 25' 9"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations Sun W. 176° 40' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 1038 lbs


Max. temperature = 26°

Min. temperature = 14°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as leaks through the bulkhead aft into the fire room, is pumped at as required by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Carpenters employed in building a small house within the deck house for the accommodation of Alexey (native hunter) during the coming winter.

Weather bright and pleasant in the middle of the day, but dull and gloomy during the remainder. Light N.E. airs freshening to steady breeze and veering to east. Steady barometer and variable temperature.


Moon 24° N.

Full moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007e5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_068_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007e7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_068_1.jpg)


24 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 738 lbs


Max. temperature = 20.5°

Min. temperature = 8.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters through and under the bulkhead aft into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

The weather is foggy all day except for a short time at the beginning and ending of these twenty four hours when it is bright moonlight and starlight.

Light easterly winds, backing with steadily falling barometer, and rising followed by falling temperature.

At 3am faint auroral streamers in N.W. & S.E.

At 9.45am the ice opened about ½ mile astern of the ship, the "lead" extending a short distance to the N.E. and S.W.


Moon 24° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 459):

9.45 a.m. the ice opened at the old place about a half mile astern of the ship, the lead extending a short distance northeast and south-west.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007e9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_069_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007eb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_069_1.jpg)


25 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 528 lbs


Max. temperature = 23.2°

Min. temperature = 9.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.W. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy all day, with mist in the morning and light snow in the evening. Light N.E. breezes backing to north and freshening with steadily falling barometer and increasing temperature.

Much water sky to the S'd & E'd during the afternoon.


Moon 23° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007ed: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_070_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007ef: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_070_1.jpg)


26 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 273 lbs


Max. temperature = 31°

Min. temperature = 18°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and divine service was afterwards read in the cabin.

Generally cloudy weather except for a short time during the evening. Moderate easterly and north-easterly breezes with steadily rising barometer and pleasant temperature.

At 7.45pm auroral arch 50° in alt. above northern horizon and extending from east to W.N.W.; at 8 auroral arch through zenith and extending from east to west; and at 9 several faint auroral arches through zenith and extending also from east to west.


Moon 21° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007f1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_071_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007f3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_071_1.jpg)


27 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 51 tons 18 lbs


Max. temperature = 23.5°

Min. temperature = 16.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Cloudy and gloomy weather. Light N.E. breezes, slightly rising barometer and pleasant temperature. A fall of light snow at noon.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Moon 18° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007f5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_072_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007f7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_072_1.jpg)


28 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 2003 lbs


Max. temperature = 26°

Min. temperature = 15.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, while such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am a large bear coming near the ship was chased and brought to by the dogs until shot by Mr. Dunbar at a distance of about one-third of a mile from the ship. When brought alongside it was measured and found to be 7 feet 11 inches in length from the tip of his nose to the end of his tail; 5 feet 9 inches in girth abaft the fore shoulders; and to have a weight of 943 ½ pounds.

Weather overcast and gloomy all day until midnight, when the sky cleared somewhat, showing a few stars and disclosing auroral patches between north and north-east, at an altitude of 15° above the horizon.

Steady N.E. breezes with rising barometer and pleasant temperature. Misty in the early morning and a light snow at midnight.


Moon 15° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007f9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_073_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007fb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_073_1.jpg)


29 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 1748 lbs


Max. temperature = 24°

Min. temperature = 9°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather gloomy and dull, except for a short time about noon when the sky partly cleared. Moderate north-easterly breezes with steady barometer and generally falling temperature. Occasional light snow in the early morning and in the afternoon.

Crew engaged in the various operations pertaining to the routine of the ship. Engineer’s force engaged in repairing distilling pipe leading from steam cutter's boiler to waster cask; the bursting or cracking of said pipe having admitted salt water from the feed tank to the water cask and spoiled its contents.


Moon 10° N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007fd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_074_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd0007ff: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_074_1.jpg)


30 September 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 280 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 1468 lbs


Max. temperature = 9°

Min. temperature = 1.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 3.30pm a bear coming near the ship was chased, overtaken and brought to bay by the dogs, and killed by the natives Alexey and Aniguin. The carcass when brought alongside weighed 468 pounds.

By accurate measurement it is found that ice 7 inches in thickness has formed since August 31st.

A few breaks occur in the clouds in the course of the day. Moderate N.N.E. breezes back to N.N.W. by midnight, with slightly falling barometer and uniformly low temperature. A fall of light snow in the afternoon.


Provisions condemned during the month.

16 lbs canned tripe – spoiled

8 lbs canned roast beef – spoiled

3 lbs canned roast mutton – spoiled


Moon 5° N.

Last quarter



LOGS FOR OCTOBER 1880


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000801: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_075_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000803: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_075_1.jpg)


1 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 1213 lbs


Max. temperature = 20.5°

Min. temperature = 2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Mud and grey sand. A drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Gloomy disagreeable weather with a steady fall of light snow. Fresh N.N.W. breezes with falling barometer and increasing temperature.

Secured the tent-awning in place over the quarter deck for the winter.


Moon 0° 7' N.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000805: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_076_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000807: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_076_1.jpg)


2 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 130 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 958 lbs


Max. temperature = 16.5°

Min. temperature = 13°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.E. x S. indicated by the lead line.

Sky overcast nearly all day. Light snow in the forenoon, and fog in the afternoon. Light north-westerly breezes backing to light airs from W'd. Steady followed by rising barometer and uniform temperature.


Moon 5° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000809: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_077_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00080b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_077_1.jpg)


3 October 1880

Lat 73.68, Long -178.83

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N. 23° W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 41'

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 50'

Lines of position ✱✱ Capella, η Ursae Majoris


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 703 lbs


Max. temperature = 14°

Min. temperature = -7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift indicated by the lead line.

At 10am called "all hands to muster". Read the act for the government of the Navy, and mustered the crew.

The Commanding Officer then inspected the ship, and divine service was performed in the cabin.

Sky overcast at times during the day, but a little clearing occurred at intervals until at 9pm there was but a little fog resting on the horizon.

Light southerly and westerly airs dying away by midnight. Rapidly rising barometer and low temperature.

From 9 to 10pm a brilliant auroral arch 45° in altitude extended from N.W. to east, with curtains depending from the eastern extremity. This arch was remarkable for the intense white light displayed and for the solid appearance of the span.


Moon 11° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00080d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_078_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00080f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_078_1.jpg)


4 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 280 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 423 lbs


Max. temperature = 6°

Min. temperature = -12.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Calms and light variable airs throughout the day with fog or mist until midnight, when it becomes clear and pleasant with bright starlight. At the same time a bright auroral arch appears 30° south of the zenith and extending from E. to W. Rising barometer and falling temperature.


Moon 15° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000811: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_079_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000813: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_079_1.jpg)


5 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 50 tons 168 lbs


Max. temperature = 9.5°

Min. temperature = -14°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom and fine sand. No drift indicated by the lead line.

At 6am the noise of ice grinding under pressure was heard to the eastward. At midnight an irregular curtain-arch appeared 30° in altitude to the northward and extending from E. to W.

Weather bright and cloudless at the beginning and ending of the day. Light westerly airs veering to light N.N.W. breeze with nearly steady barometer and increasing temperature.

Crew occupied throughout the day in breaking out from below and storing on deck a quantity of provisions in readiness for any emergency during the winter.


Moon 19° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 466 ff):

At six a.m. Chipp heard a grinding of ice to the eastward, and I suppose we shall have the satisfaction now of waiting for the repetition of the anxious times of last winter, not knowing how soon we may have pandemonium around us.



50a27fdd7438ae05bd000815: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_080_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000817: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_080_1.jpg)


6 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 2153 lbs


Max. temperature = 15.5°

Min. temperature = 4.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Mud and fine sand. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Heinrich H. Kaack (seaman) (discharged from the sick list on September 30th) while passing along the spar deck fell and again sustained a fracture of the right olecranon process.

Crew engaged during the day in banking up snow against the ship's side to prevent radiation of heat during the winter.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light northerly breezes. Slowly rising barometer and variable temperature. A little snow during the forenoon.

At 3am an auroral demi-arch 30° in alt and extended from W. to N. with a few streamers.


Moon 22° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000819: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_081_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00081b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_081_1.jpg)


7 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 1898 lbs


Max. temperature = 15°

Min. temperature = 9.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Mud and fine sand. A drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Crew occupied throughout the day in banking up snow against the ship's side.

Sky overcast; dull and gloomy weather with almost steady fall of light snow; light northerly breezes backing as day advances. Steady barometer and moderate temperature.

At midnight the sky cleared somewhat, revealing a few stars and a faint auroral arch extending from N. to S. and about 30° in altitude above the western horizon.


Moon 24° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00081d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_082_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00081f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_082_1.jpg)


8 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 1498 lbs


Max. temperature = 11°

Min. temperature = 8°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 ¾ fathoms. Mud and fine sand. A drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Crew occupied throughout the day in banking up snow against the ship's side.

Dull and gloomy weather. Light northerly and westerly breezes, falling barometer and uniform temperature. An almost steady fall of very light snow.


Moon 24° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000821: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_083_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000823: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_083_1.jpg)


9 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 1243 lbs


Max. temperature = 11°

Min. temperature = 7.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Sky overcast all day. Dull and gloomy weather with almost steady fall of light snow after 6pm. Light N.W. breezes. Steady barometer and uniform temperature.

Crew engaged until noon in banking up snow against ship's side.


Moon 22° S.

New moon


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000825: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_084_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd000827: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_084_1.jpg)


10 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 918 lbs


Max. temperature = 13.5°

Min. temperature = 1.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally cloudy and gloomy. Light airs or calms, with occasional fall of very light snow, and some fog after noon. Slightly rising barometer.

A very remarkable water sky to the S.E. throughout the day.


Moon 19° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd000829: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_085_0.jpg)

50a27fdd7438ae05bd00082b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_085_1.jpg)


11 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 628 lbs


Max. temperature = 9.5°

Min. temperature = 1.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom with fine sand. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Dull and gloomy weather all day. Light northerly airs veering gradually until toward midnight when suddenly the wind came out briskly from S.W. Steady barometer, increasing temperature, and, from noon to midnight, a steady fall of light snow.

Crew engaged in banking up snow against ship's side.


Moon 15° S.

First quarter


50a27fdd7438ae05bd00082d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_086_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00082f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_086_1.jpg)


12 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 338 lbs


Max. temperature = 10°

Min. temperature = 5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Mud and fine sand. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Calms and light airs, with light snow, rising barometer and slightly falling temperature.


Moon 10° S.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000831: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_087_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000833: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_087_1.jpg)


13 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 49 tons 48 lbs


Max. temperature = 8°

Min. temperature = 4.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 ½ fathoms. Mud and fine sand. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Continuance of dull and gloomy weather. Light easterly airs freshening to gentle E.S.E. breezes, with rising barometer and but slight change of temperature. A fall of light snow at intervals throughout the day.

An opening occurred in the ice about a mile ahead of the ship, from which three seals were obtained.


Moon 5° S.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000835: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_088_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000837: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_088_1.jpg)


14 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 1888 lbs


Max. temperature = 18.5°

Min. temperature = -3.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 ½ fathoms. Mud and fine sand. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Dull and gloomy weather. Moderate to brisk easterly winds, veering after noon, with falling followed by steady barometer, and steadily rising temperature. Considerable water sky during the day, the same being very marked to the eastward at midnight.


Moon 1° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000839: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_089_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00083b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_089_1.jpg)


15 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 156 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 1598 lbs


Max. temperature = 22°

Min. temperature = 10.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms, muddy bottom. A rapid drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Dull and gloomy weather continues until 9pm when the clouds partly break away showing the moon at intervals. At midnight bright moonlight and starlight. Moderate S.W. breezes veering to west with rising barometer and falling temperature.

Heavy water sky to E'd. A lane of open water about 2 miles ahead of the ship closing again toward evening.


Moon 6° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd00083d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_090_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00083f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_090_1.jpg)


16 October 1880

Lat 73.45, Long -178.55

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 27'

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 33'

Lines of position Moon and ✱ Capella about 7.45pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 1308 lbs


Max. temperature = 10°

Min. temperature = -8°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift indicated by the lead line.

The ice about 2 miles S.E. and E. of the ship was found open this morning by hunting parties and large masses of ice 7 feet in thickness piled to the heights of 30 and 40 feet in irregular masses on the edges of the water lane, indicating severe pressures during the night. The ice between this water lane and the ship appeared to be subjected to considerable strain, and at times after noon and until midnight loud noises were heard from it around and about the ship. Numerous small cracks were found upon examination of the ice after these noises, and the ship experienced slight jars.

In the afternoon the ice to the S.E. was in motion, straining and grinding and piling up in ridges.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Light westerly breezes, rising barometer and low temperature. Bright moonlight and starlight before 6am and after 6pm.

At 9pm double auroral arch 60° in alt to the N'd and extending from N.W. to S.E. At midnight faint auroral streaks pulsating from W. to E. at an altitude of 45° to the S'd, and a faint arch from W. to E. 45° in altitude to the N'd.


Moon 11° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 472 ff):

The hunting parties, on going out this morning, found an opening in the ice about two miles southeast and east from the ship, and extending in alternate open and closed spots for a short distance. Where they were closed large ridges of piled-up slabs seven and eight feet thick rose to heights of thirty and forty feet. As this occurred since yesterday, the pressure and upheaval must have taken place during last night. While going out to the bear-trap yesterday with Mr. Dunbar we noticed several cracks along the ice, formed over what had been a lane of water an eighth of a mile northwest of the ship, which lane extended in an arc of a circle, or rather curve, around to northeast on one hand, and west on the other, at distances varying from one eighth mile to two miles, ending at rough and heavy ice-ridges. That ice appeared subjected then to some great strain, and to-day I was concerned to find that the new ice around us was receiving strains and pressure. The hunters — Mr. Dunbar especially — described the grinding and crashing having recommenced two miles ahead of the ship as they turned to come in; and when Nindemann came home, just before supper, he reported that the ice was at work heavily, or, as he expressed it, "the whole ocean was alive."


During the evening various snaps and cracks were heard around the ship, and occasionally we had a light jar. Going out repeatedly for examination, we at last found crevices and cracks meandering along ahead of the ship under the stern athwart ships, and here and there in other places.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000841: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_091_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000843: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_091_1.jpg)


17 October 1880

Lat 73.48, Long -178.77

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 29'

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 46'

Lines of position ✱✱ Jupiter and Capella about 7.45pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 1018 lbs


Max. temperature = -5°

Min. temperature = -15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather clear, bright and cold. Light westerly breezes, and steady barometer, and almost cloudless sky.

At midnight one half of the sky was covered by cumulo-stratus clouds moving from N. to S. and at that moment extending from the zenith to the southern horizon obscuring the moon and the stars. (North of the zenith the sky was clear, except a streak of cirro-stratus above a small bank of rising cumulo-stratus) Immediately following the cumulo-stratus clouds and near the zenith was a faint auroral arch extending from east to west, with its ends slightly curving to the southward and hidden by the clouds near the horizon. As the clouds nearly uncovered the east end, a mass of bright green light shot up, and spread like a fan over 10° of arc; and just as the east end was completely uncovered the mass changed into brilliant green spiral curtains terminating a bright white arch through zenith to west. After perhaps a minute, the clouds being well clear of the arch, the light paled and lost colors, and the arch-ends straggled back to N.W. and N.E., the center being at the zenith. The moon then became entirely uncovered, the floe seemed lighted as in mid day, and but few faint streaks of arches remained, thin and almost indeterminate.


Moon 15° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000845: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_092_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000847: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_092_1.jpg)


18 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 728 lbs


Max. temperature = 3.5°

Min. temperature = -12.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant during the forenoon, dull and gloomy in the afternoon. Light fall of snow in the middle hours of the day. Light westerly airs backing to east with slightly falling barometer and increasing temperature.


Moon 19° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000849: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_093_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00084b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_093_1.jpg)


19 October 1880

Lat 73.54, Long -178.50

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 140 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 32' 30"

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 30' 15"

Lines of position Moon and ✱ Jupiter


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 438 lbs


Max. temperature = 4°

Min. temperature = -6°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather partially clear and pleasant after 6am, overcast, dull and gloomy with fine snow previous to that hour. Steadily freshening E. wind with slightly falling barometer and falling temperature.


Moon 22° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd00084d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_094_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00084f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_094_1.jpg)


20 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 48 tons 148 lbs


Max. temperature = 14.5°

Min. temperature = -2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to W. being indicated by the lead line.

Cloudy and gloomy weather, with occasional light snow. Brisk easterly breezes, with falling barometer and increasing temperature.


Moon 23° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000851: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_095_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000853: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_095_1.jpg)


21 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 1988 lbs


Max. temperature = 16°

Min. temperature = 1.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy, though partially clear in the middle of the day. Between midnight and 3am the wind backs to the northward, grow light and is succeeded by a calm at 1pm. The barometer rapidly rises after 6am. At and after 6pm there is a light W.S.W. breeze. Rapidly falling followed by as rapidly rising temperature.

Very light snow fall all day.


Moon 24° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000855: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_096_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000857: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_096_1.jpg)


22 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 1698 lbs


Max. temperature = 14°

Min. temperature = 2.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather occasionally partly clear and pleasant, and at other times dull and gloomy. Light S.W. breezes, rising barometer and slightly varying temperature.


Moon 23° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000859: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_097_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00085b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_097_1.jpg)


23 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 145 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 1408 lbs


Max. temperature = 10.5°

Min. temperature = -13.8°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant until 9pm when it became and continued foggy. Moderate west winds veering in the evening and growing lighter. Rising and unusually high barometer, and low temperature.

Sun dogs on horizon at 9am. At 3pm the sun set in S.S.W. At 6pm auroral arch from E. to W. through zenith, a beautiful spiral at its eastern end. Stars were clearly visible through this arch for its entire length. At the same time a lunar halo 3° in diameter showed prismatic colors.


Moon 22° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd00085d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_098_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00085f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_098_1.jpg)


24 October 1880

Lat 73.73, Long -178.75

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 44'

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 45'

Lines of position ✱✱ Capella & Jupiter about 8pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 1118 lbs


Max. temperature = -4°

Min. temperature = -17.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and at the conclusion of the inspection divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light easterly breezes, rapidly falling barometer and low temperature. Occasional fog and frequent haze.

Sunrise at 9am in E.S.E. Sunset at 3pm in S.S.W.

At midnight patches of auroral light and sections of auroral curtains were visible in all directions at an altitude of 20°.


Moon 19° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 477 ff):

There is a considerable amount of doubt thrown on all observations taken during such cold weather as we experience in an Arctic winter. Sextants were never designed to be submitted to such contraction as they now undergo in use, and there is no way to allow for or remedy the changes produced in the length of the arc. The greater the cold the greater the contraction of course, but that gives no index error. A sextant very carefully adjusted to-day, and then having an index correction of 30", was found after a short exposure to have an index error of 4' apparently, but how much the arc was shortened it would be impossible to say. The mercury on the index and horizon glasses cracks and splits, and Chipp is kept busy in supplying new backs. For some time, over a month, I have been trying to get some satisfactory lunars to check our chronometers by, but they have all resulted so ridiculously, and no two alike, that I have despaired of getting anything reliable. As another resource I shall break out our zenith telescope, and see if it has power enough to define Jupiter's satellites, by whose eclipses, occultations, or transits I can get chronometer errors. The way of the Arctic navigator, drifting in the pack, is difficult to determine in winter.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000861: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_099_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000863: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_099_1.jpg)


25 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 828 lbs


Max. temperature = -11°

Min. temperature = -18°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Fresh easterly breezes; falling barometer and low temperature.

At 6pm auroral arch to the N'd 20° in alt. extending from E. to W. At 9 auroral curtains, and an arch to the N'd 30° in alt extending from E. to W. with its ends curling inwards and spiral in form. Lunar halo 3° in diameter. Very hazy at midnight. Moonlight and starlight much dimmed, and an apparent blending of ~ of ice and sky at short distances.


Moon 16° N.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000865: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_100_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000867: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_100_1.jpg)


26 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 538 lbs


Max. temperature = -7°

Min. temperature = -19.3°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant. Sunrise at 9. Sunset at 3. Bright moonlight and starlight until midnight when some opening in the ice caused a thick fog. Moderate easterly breezes, backing after noon and growing light, with rising barometer, and a sudden fall in temperature followed by a rise.

At 9pm auroral arches extended from N.E. to S.W., 20° in altitude north and south respectively, with patches of auroral light between the arches.


Moon 12° N.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000869: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_101_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00086b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_101_1.jpg)


27 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 248 lbs


Max. temperature = 1°

Min. temperature = -6°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to south being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light northerly breezes until noon, and a steadily freshening N.W. breeze thereafter to midnight. Steadily rising barometer and increasing temperature.

A 9am an opening in the ice about 6 feet in width was discovered about 500 yards from the ships port side.

At 11.30am the ship was considerably jarred by some movement in the underlying or surrounding ice, though no cause could be found for it in the appearance of things outside.


Moon 7° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 478 ff):

This morning at daylight a crack or lane six feet in width was discovered on our port beam, about five hundred yards distant. It extended to and joined with what was an open lane an eighth of a mile astern of the ship. (This last-named lane has remained closed or frozen over for nearly three months until a few days ago, when numerous cracks appeared in it, extending lengthwise, or, roughly, northeast and southwest. These cracks opened on Sunday to a width in some places of eight feet, and to-day they are again closed, a ridge of broken blocks four feet in height marking where the union was made.)


At 11.30 a.m. the ship received a considerable jar, causing the lamp-chimneys and shades to rattle and ring. Most of us were on the ice at the time, and there it was unnoticed by all seemingly excepting myself. I detected an earthquaky movement or two which seemed like a lift and a shove. This, however, is merely a beginning. Next month, if it is anything like last year, will be full of events.



50a27fde7438ae05bd00086d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_102_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00086f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_102_1.jpg)


28 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 47 tons 2198 lbs


Max. temperature = 4.5°

Min. temperature = -8°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy in in the forenoon, clearing partially in the afternoon. Light N.W. breezes backing toward midnight and freshening rapidly. Steadily rising barometer and variable temperature.


Moon 2° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 479):

Not a sound from the ice to-day, and evidently a period of rest or preparation.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000871: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_103_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000873: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_103_1.jpg)


29 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 1908 lbs


Max. temperature = -2°

Min. temperature = -19.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Fresh N.W. breezes backing after noon and growing light. Slightly rising barometer and steadily decreasing temperature.


Moon 3° S.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000875: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_104_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000877: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_104_1.jpg)


30 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 1618 lbs


Max. temperature = -8°

Min. temperature = -20.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant until noon, between which time and midnight the sky was overcast. Light westerly airs backing to S.S.E. with rising barometer and low temperature.

At 3am an auroral display to the northward, consisting of an arch 20° in altitude with a curtain depending from its west end. At midnight a curtain arch of pale green light, 10° in altitude to the S'd extending from E. to W. had a succession of masses of bright green light pulsating across it from E. to W.

Sounds of ice cracking were heard at 1am, 3am and 3pm. The cracks seemed to come from the ice under the stern and at a distance on the quarters.

A lane of open water was found about a mile ahead of the ship running across her bows and about 6 feet in width.


Moon 8° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 479):

Cracking and noises of grinding commenced just after midnight, the former seeming to be under the stern, and the latter coming from some distance on either quarter. The snaps and grinding lasted until nearly three a.m., and again set in for a short time about three p.m. No evidence of any disturbances could be seen around the ship, though a crack or narrow lane was found about a mile ahead where it has opened and closed before.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000879: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_105_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00087b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_105_1.jpg)


31 October 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 1328 lbs


Max. temperature = -0.5°

Min. temperature = -21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, after which divine service was performed in the cabin.

The ice in the immediate vicinity of the ship is found by actual measurement to be 24 inches in thickness, being the result of direct freezing since August 31st.

Weather generally bright and pleasant until 9pm from which time the sky was overcast. Light southerly airs, slowly falling barometer, and after 9am steadily rising temperature.


Provisions condemned during the month

2 lbs beef soup – bad

15 lbs roast beef – bad

3 lbs raspberries – bad

30 lbs Rio coffee – injured by salt water January 19th

340 lbs oatmeal – injured by salt water January 19th

150 lbs beans – injured by salt water January 19th

40 lbs hotch potch – bad


Moon 13° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 481):

Measurements of the ice thickness to-day gave twenty-four inches, direct freezing since August 31st.




LOGS FOR NOVEMBER 1880


50a27fde7438ae05bd00087d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_106_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00087f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_106_1.jpg)


1 November 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 1028 lbs


Max. temperature = 8°

Min. temperature = 0°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to north being indicated by the lead line.

The winter routine was commenced to day. Among other things it provides for an exercise of two hours daily of all hands on the ice, and a thorough ventilation of the ship during the absence of officers and men.

The examination by the surgeon of officers and men was resumed and a portion of it completed to day.

Weather generally dull and gloomy but exceptionally mild. Light S.E. breezes dying away at noon and succeeded by light veering westerly airs. Nearly steady barometer.


Moon 18° S.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000881: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_107_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000883: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_107_1.jpg)


2 November 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 158 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 748 lbs


Max. temperature = 10.5°

Min. temperature = -6°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

An opening occurred in the ice about 500 yards north of the ship extending a short distance to the eastward.

The medical examination was continued and completed to day.

Weather partially clear and pleasant at times, but frequently dull and gloomy with overcast sky and a slight fall of snow. Light S.W. airs veering to fresh N.E. breezes after noon, with falling barometer and pleasant temperature.

At 6pm segment of spiral auroral curtain in the east extending toward the zenith. At 9pm auroral patches in the east, and a faint arch through zenith. At midnight flashes of pale green light from west toward zenith and irregular curtain patches between N.W. and north.


Moon 21° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 481):

With to-day we have a new moon, and in prompt accordance with our experience of last year a crack occurs in the ice about five hundred yards north of the ship, in some places six feet wide, and extending to the eastward for a short distance. Beyond an occasional shriek of newly made ice being moved a little, there is no trouble received from the opening.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000885: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_108_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000887: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_108_1.jpg)


4 November 1880

Lat 73.73, Long 179.95

3 November 1880

[Editor's note: The ship has crossed the 180th meridian to the west again. The correct date is shown in top center, the ship log's date remained unchanged and is shown here each day.]

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 168 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 44'

Longitude by chronometer E. 179° 57'

Lines of position ✱✱✱ Capella, Arcturus and Vega about 6pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 458 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = -19.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to south being indicated by the lead line.

The ship is found to be west of the 180th meridian. In order to prevent confusion the date is not changed for ship's duties, but the correct date is entered in the log book in red ink under the old date.

Weather dull and gloomy during the forenoon, but bright and pleasant during the afternoon. Fresh N.W. breezes, backing after noon and becoming lighter. Rising barometer and low temperature.

A large seal weighing 149 pounds was killed and brought into the ship from an opening in the ice about 2 miles to the S.E.

At 1.45pm magnificent sunset. Solar circle showing segments with crimson-like tints. At 9pm faint auroral arch 10° in alt to the N'd. Sky covered with brilliant auroral patches and segments of curtain arches, which at times pulsated with pale green lights.


Moon 23° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 482):

Magnificent sunset at 1.45 (shorter and shorter grow the days), presenting a solar circle showing segments with crimson-like tints. At six p.m. a faint arch 10° in altitude to northward; but at nine p.m. the sky was literally covered with brilliant auroral patches and segments of curtain arches, which at times pulsated with pale green light. The galvanometer, with one hundred feet insulated wire extending nearly in plane of magnetic meridian, showed no disturbance, and the auroral light thrown on unsized paper by a mirror showed no effect in the sulphate of quinine spots.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000889: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_109_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00088b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_109_1.jpg)


5 November 1880

No position

4 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 168 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 46 tons 168 lbs


Max. temperature = 9°

Min. temperature = -10.5°


The ship is pumped out forward by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to north being indicated by the lead line.

Dull and gloomy weather all day. Brisk S.W. winds, rapidly falling barometer and pleasant temperature. Almost steady fall of very light snow.

The old lead ahead of the ship and about a mile distant opened to a width of 400 or 500 yards.

A piece of drift wood was found about 700 yards to the eastward of the ship and brought on board.


Moon 24° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd00088d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_110_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00088f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_110_1.jpg)


6 November 1880

No position

5 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 168 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 2083 lbs


Max. temperature = 9°

Min. temperature = -28°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Moderate northerly and westerly breeze, rising barometer and rapidly falling temperature.

At 11am an opening occurred in the young ice 1/8 mile to N.N.W. and extending in a general N.E. and S.W. direction in its length it opened rapidly until at 3pm it had a width of about 200 yards. Numerous snaps and jars were experienced on board ship between noon and midnight, but as no change could be detected in the ice surrounding the ship, it was impossible to say whether the noises were due to ice movements or the drawing of fastenings of the frames under action of cold.

At 9pm a double auroral arch with spiral curtain ends uniting in E. and W. and at altitude of 70° N. and 90° respectively. At midnight the sky was generally covered with auroral patches.


Moon 22° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000891: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_111_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000893: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_111_1.jpg)


7 November 1880

No position

6 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 168 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 1793 lbs


Max. temperature = -23°

Min. temperature = -33.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to south being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant but very cold, a remarkably low temperature prevailing all day. Light westerly breeze with slightly rising barometer.

At 6am sounds of ice grinding in the N.E. At 3pm the same sounds in W.S.W.

At 9pm an irregular auroral arch 20° in alt north, and extending from E. to W. At midnight the floe was illuminated by light from auroral loops, generally extending from E. to W. and covering the sky from the northern horizon to points 40° in altitude above the southern horizon.

At noon the sun was about two of his diameters above the horizon – probably his last appearance this year.


Moon 20° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 484):

The ice commenced screeching at six a.m. in the northeast, and at 3 p.m. in the west.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000895: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_112_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000897: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_112_1.jpg)


8 November 1880

No position

7 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 168 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 1393 lbs


Max. temperature = -25.5°

Min. temperature = -33°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am called all hands to muster. Read the articles for the government of the Navy, and mustered the crew. The ship was then inspected by the Commanding Officer.

At 1pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally clear and pleasant though very cold. Light westerly airs, and rising barometer.

The sun did not come in sight at all to day, though a bright red sky at noon indicated his position.

During the forenoon the ice was found to be cracked between the ship and the thermometer stand about 100 yards on her port quarter.

During the day and evening sounds of ice grinding to the S'd and at times a snapping and cracking of the surface crust was heard in the immediate vicinity of the ship.

At 9pm an auroral arch 15° in alt. to the N'd and extending from N.W. to east. At midnight curtain arches generally scattered over the sky from the northern horizon to the zenith, and in extent from E. to W.


Moon 16° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 485):

During the forenoon the ice was found to be cracked between the ship and the thermometer box, and I suppose the time is not far distant when we shall see the ice floating away from us again as it did a year ago. During the day and evening grinding of ice could be heard to the southward, and generally the snapping and crackling of the surface crust.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000899: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_113_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00089b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_113_1.jpg)


9 November 1880

No position

8 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 168 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 1103 lbs


Max. temperature = -24°

Min. temperature = -31°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather partially clear and pleasant though cold. Light southerly airs, and nearly steady barometer.

At 9pm and midnight sounds of grinding ice were heard on the starboard quarter.

At 3am auroral arches to the S'd at altitudes respectively of 70° and 20°. The latter arch breaking into curtain patches. Both arches extended from N.E. to S.W.


Moon 11° S.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd00089d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_114_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00089f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_114_1.jpg)


9 November 1880

Lat 73.66, Long -179.45

[Editor's note: The ship has crossed the 180th meridian to the east again, subtracted one day.]

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N’d & W’d of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 40'

Longitude by chronometer W. 179° 27'

Lines of position ✱✱ Vega & Saturn about 8.20pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 778 lbs


Max. temperature = -18°

Min. temperature = -28.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant though cold. Light S.E. breeze with falling barometer.

By extraordinary refraction the sun was above the horizon at noon. Some portion of his disc showing from 11am to 1pm. Moon rising at 3pm.

At 6pm dim auroral arch 20° in alt to the northward and extending from N.W. to S.E. at 9pm. Brilliant arch through zenith from N.W. to S.E., narrow and undulating. At midnight auroral patches north and south of zenith, generally in a N.W. and S.E. direction.


Moon 6° S.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008a1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_115_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008a3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_115_1.jpg)


10 November 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 488 lbs


Max. temperature = -18°

Min. temperature = -26.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. From 6pm to midnight bright moonlight and starlight and an absolutely cloudless sky. Light easterly and N.E. airs with slightly falling barometer.

By extraordinary refraction the sun was again above the horizon at noon. Same portion of his disc showing from 11am to 1pm.


Moon 1° S.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008a5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_116_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008a7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_116_1.jpg)


11 November 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 198 lbs


Max. temperature = -20.5°

Min. temperature = -30.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant, although a little hazy at the beginning and ending of the day. Light northerly airs, slightly falling barometer and low temperature.

A bear was sighted from the ship, at considerable distance, and chased by men and dogs without success.

At 3am faint auroral arch 60° in altitude to the S'd. At 6pm there was a magnificent lunar halo, 5° in diameter showing vivid prismatic colors in clearly defined circles.

Sounds of grinding ice to the southward.


Moon 5° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 486):

Sounds of grinding ice to southward at three a.m.



50a27fde7438ae05bd0008a9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_117_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008ab: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_117_1.jpg)


12 November 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 45 tons 2113 lbs


Max. temperature = -21°

Min. temperature = -30.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 26 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and cold. Light northerly airs, cloudless sky after 3pm, and nearly steady barometer.

At 3am faint auroral arch to S'd 8° in altitude; at 6am 3 auroral arches visible extending from E. to W., one through zenith, another 40° S. and the third 20° in altitude south.

At 11pm and midnight brilliant lunar halo showing deep colored and clearly distinct prismatic colors.


Moon 10° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008ad: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_118_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008af: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_118_1.jpg)


13 November 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 1823 lbs


Max. temperature = -9°

Min. temperature = -31°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 26 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

The day begins with a cloudless sky, but it becomes cloudy, and after 9pm foggy. Light airs rapidly veering until 3pm, and then freshening breezes as rapidly backing. Snowfall after 10pm. Rising barometer throughout the day with a sudden fall at midnight. Steadily increasing temperature.


Moon 14° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008b1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_119_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008b3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_119_1.jpg)


15 November 1880

Lat 73.65, Long 179.87

14 November 1880

[Editor's note: The ship has crossed the 180th meridian to the west again. As usual, the correct date is shown in top center, the ship log's date is shown here each day.]

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 39'

Longitude by chronometer E. 179° 52'

Lines of position ✱✱ Pollux & Vega


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 1533 lbs


Max. temperature = -5°

Min. temperature = -27.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to east being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

At 1.30am the ship sustained a very heavy shock from some undiscoverable ice movement. At 10am the lead one mile ahead of the ship and the lead 1/8 mile astern of the ship were found to be open again, the latter to the width of about a hundred yards.

At 6pm loud noises from grinding ice in the lead astern. At midnight a beautiful lunar halo, 5° in diameter and showing prismatic colors.

Generally bright and pleasant weather. Light breezes backing to S.S.W. by noon and there remaining until midnight. Rapidly rising barometer and decreasing temperature.

The ship being again west of the 180th meridian, the correct date is added in red ink, though for ships purposes the date is not changed.


Moon 18° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 487 ff):

At 1.30 a.m. I was startled by a severe shock to the ship, taking her as if she were sliding down an inclined plane and suddenly brought up, or as if she had been struck a severe blow under her stern. I ran for the man on watch, but he had noticed nothing he said, and there were no signs of disturbance in the ice. I learned afterwards that the shock had awakened everybody aft, but that no one forward had felt or noticed anything; it may be well to add that so callous have we become to such things as shocks that nobody turned out. At six p.m., while the ice was grinding in an ugly way in the lead one eighth mile astern, I was on the deck-house with the zenith telescope, looking out for occultations of Jupiter's satellites. Mr. Dunbar came up and quite earnestly asked me if I heard the pressure going on; but as I was watching Jupiter intently I made some such indifferent answer as, "Heard it some time ago," etc., quite to his astonishment. No doubt he thought that I was taking things easy, but the fact is I have long since concluded to borrow no trouble. We cannot prevent any disaster that may befall us, and we have made all possible provision for its coming. Human strength is of no avail and human wisdom of no value. In our position we have done all that man can do, and we must leave the rest with God. After breakfast, as soon as people began to move around, it was discovered that the lead a mile ahead of the ship, as well as the lead one eighth mile astern, were both open, the latter to a width of one hundred yards.



50a27fde7438ae05bd0008b5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_120_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008b7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_120_1.jpg)


16 November 1880

No position

15 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 1243 lbs


Max. temperature = -19°

Min. temperature = -25.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and cold. Sky absolutely cloudless the greater part of the day. Light S.S.W. breezes, barometer rapidly rising to an extraordinary height.


Moon 21° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008b9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_121_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008bb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_121_1.jpg)


17 November 1880

No position

16 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 953 lbs


Max. temperature = -10.5°

Min. temperature = -30°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant until 3pm after which time the sky rapidly became cloudy. Light southerly airs until the barometer had reached its highest point, when the wind backed to the E'd. After 9pm rapidly freshening breezes with as rapidly falling barometer and suddenly increasing temperature.

At 3pm sounds of grinding ice ahead and astern.

At 3pm lunar halo showing prismatic colors, and at midnight lunar circle showing in diameter 20°.


Moon 23° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 489):

Sounds of grinding ice were heard from ahead and astern at three p.m., but nothing remarkable occurred, and we must wait to see what to-morrow will bring forth.



50a27fde7438ae05bd0008bd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_122_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008bf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_122_1.jpg)


18 November 1880

No position

17 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 663 lbs


Max. temperature = 8.5°

Min. temperature = -9.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Gloomy weather. Moderate easterly gale with rapidly falling barometer and increasing temperature. Water sky to northward.


Moon 24° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008c1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_123_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008c3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_123_1.jpg)


19 November 1880

No position

18 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 373 lbs


Max. temperature = 7.5°

Min. temperature = 2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy all day. Fresh easterly breeze, moderating and backing to N.N.W. by midnight.

Very dark water sky to northward.


Moon 23° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008c5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_124_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008c7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_124_1.jpg)


20 November 1880

No position

19 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 44 tons 83 lbs


Max. temperature = 7.7°

Min. temperature = -8°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally cloudy and dull. Light north-westerly and westerly breezes, rising barometer and falling temperature.

Appearances of water sky to the northward during the middle of the day.

At midnight wind remains steady at W. x S.


Moon 22° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008c9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_125_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008cb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_125_1.jpg)


21 November 1880

No position

20 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 165 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 1923 lbs


Max. temperature = -2°

Min. temperature = -12°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather partially clear, but dull and gloomy. Light N.N.W. airs the greater part of the day with steadily rising barometer and falling temperature.

Stars visible at 9am. At midnight, faint irregular curtain arch of auroral light at an altitude of 25° to the northward, and extending from N.E. to N.W.


Moon 20° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008cd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_126_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008cf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_126_1.jpg)


22 November 1880

Lat 73.80, Long 179.82

21 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island


Latitude by observation N. 73° 48'

Longitude by chronometer E. 179° 49'

Lines of position ✱✱ Arcturus & Capella about 4pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 1633 lbs


Max. temperature = -7°

Min. temperature = -15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 26 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally cloudy and dull. Light northerly airs, rising barometer and uniform temperature.


Moon 17° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008d1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_127_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008d3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_127_1.jpg)


23 November 1880

No position

22 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 1343 lbs


Max. temperature = -4°

Min. temperature = -22.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 26 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light northerly and north-westerly airs, steady barometer, and low temperature. Between 6 and 9pm a sudden and large increase in the temperature due perhaps to an opening in the ice and escape of heat from the water beneath. At these hours the sky was entirely overcast and a haze prevailed.


Moon 13° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 490):

Low temperature as a rule, except at nine and six p.m., when some ice opening made heat escape from water exposed, and the temperature jumped up.



50a27fde7438ae05bd0008d5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_128_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008d7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_128_1.jpg)


24 November 1880

No position

23 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 1053 lbs


Max. temperature = -6°

Min. temperature = -21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 26 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant until midnight, when the sky became overcast, due no doubt to some ice-opening, as a marked rise in temperature occurred. Light N.W. airs and steady barometer.

During the forenoon a lane of water opening to N'd was found extending for a short distance from the lead 1/8 mile astern of the ship.

A hunting party while out came upon the trail of three bears, which though chased and overtaken by dogs escaped by crossing the water before mentioned.

At 3am faint auroral arch from W. to E. at an altitude of 25° to S'd. At 6am faint auroral arch from E. to W. through zenith. At 6pm faint auroral patch in E., and at 10pm bright arch through zenith from E.S.E. to W.N.W.


Moon 9° N.

Full moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008d9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_129_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008db: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_129_1.jpg)


25 November 1880

No position

24 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 763 lbs


Max. temperature = -2°

Min. temperature = -25°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 25 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light variable airs, rising barometer and falling temperature.


Moon 4° N.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008dd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_130_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008df: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_130_1.jpg)


26 November 1880

No position

25 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 473 lbs


Max. temperature = -12.5°

Min. temperature = -27.7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 25 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light easterly and N.E. airs, falling barometer and decreasing temperature.


Moon 1° S.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008e1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_131_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008e3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_131_1.jpg)


27 November 1880

No position

26 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 73 lbs


Max. temperature = -2.5°

Min. temperature = -24.5°


The ship is kept dry forward by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 25 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Freshening northerly winds, falling barometer and rising temperature. From noon to midnight fog and very light snow.


Moon 6° S.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008e5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_132_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008e7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_132_1.jpg)


28 November 1880

No position

27 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 174 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 42 tons 2023 lbs


Max. temperature = 0°

Min. temperature = -10°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 24 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light northerly breezes, steady barometer and slightly varying temperature.

At 3am faint irregular streaks of aurora in a general E. and W. direction, and from an altitude of 80°, to the southern horizon.


Moon 12° S.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008e9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_133_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008eb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_133_1.jpg)


29 November 1880

Lat 73.68, Long 178.95

28 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 176 miles to the N. 35° W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 41'

Longitude by chronometer E. 178° 57'

Lines of position ✱✱ Pollux & Aldebaran 8pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 43 tons 1698 lbs


Max. temperature = -1.5°

Min. temperature = -12.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 24 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light northerly breezes, rising barometer and moderate temperature.

At 9pm faint curtain arch of aurora, 10° in altitude to the N'd and extending from N.W. to E.


Moon 16° S.

Last quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008ed: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_134_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008ef: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_134_1.jpg)


30 November 1880

No position

29 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 176 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 42 tons 1408 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = -13.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 23 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant during the forenoon; dull and gloomy in the afternoon. Light E.N.E. breezes, veering after noon to east and rapidly freshening with quickly falling barometer and rising temperature. At midnight the wind was blowing in heavy squalls, while the air was filled with clouds of drifting snow.

At 3am auroral corona, and streaks, rays and curtains from zenith to 40° S. at 12.15pm a meteor fell in W. x S. of bright color showing for 2 seconds in the descent from an altitude of about 50°.


Moon 20° S.

Last quarter



LOGS FOR DECEMBER 1880


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008f1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_135_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008f3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_135_1.jpg)


1 December 1880

Lat 74.00, Long 178.25

30 November 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 198 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 74° 0'

Longitude by chronometer E. 178° 15'

Lines of position ✱✱ Arcturus & Capella 3pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 42 tons 1083 lbs


Max. temperature = 23°

Min. temperature = 5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 25 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Strong winds from east and S.E., moderating after 6am and sharply veering toward midnight. Falling barometer until noon, and thence steady until midnight. Remarkably high temperature.

At 3am faint patches auroral light in S.S.E. 35° in altitude. At 11.50am a bright meteor fell in the west. At 3pm bright auroral streamer in N.N.W. developing a faint curtain 20° in alt. to N'd. At 8pm, four brilliant auroral curtain arches with pale green spiral terminations, the whole extending from N.W. to E. at altitudes between 30° and 60°. Between the bright arches and the zenith were two faint arches. The brightest colored spirals were in the N.W.


Provisions condemned during the month

125 lbs oatmeal – damaged during leak

3 lbs gooseberries – spoiled

4 ¼ lbs roast beef – spoiled


The ice in the immediate vicinity of the ship is found by actual measurement to be 32 inches in thickness being the result of direct freezing since August 31st.


Moon 23° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 491):

Very rapid drift to N.N.W. At three p.m., by a Sumner of stars, the ship is placed in latitude 74° N., longitude 178° 15' E., showing a remarkable drift in two days of twenty-two miles to N. 32° W. Hardly believing that we could have gone so far, I got the meridian altitude of Jupiter at eight p.m., which gave a latitude of 73° 50', differing 10'. But as the meridian altitude was only 18°, and the refraction accordingly much in doubt, I decided to consider the Sumner nearer correct.



50a27fde7438ae05bd0008f5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_136_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008f7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_136_1.jpg)


2 December 1880

No position

1 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 198 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 42 tons 793 lbs


Max. temperature = 21.5°

Min. temperature = -10°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filtered aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 27 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.E. x E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy until after 9pm. Light N.W. breezes backing after 3pm, and rapidly freshening to moderate gale by midnight, with rapidly rising barometer and decreasing temperature.

At 9pm faint auroral patches in south. At 10 brilliant arch 80° in alt. to the N'd extending from N.W. to S.E. advancing to and receding from zenith in graceful motions, while a mass of bright light pulsated to right and left of center of arch.

At midnight auroral arch 45° in alt to N'd extending from N.W. to S.E., with a single detached spray above it.

Calculation of the amount of the work done by the pumps show that the leak today is about 119 gallons per hour, or exactly 2854 gallons from midnight to midnight.

The usual monthly examination by the surgeon of officers and men is begun and continued to day.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 23° – Specific gravity = 1.021 at 40°

2 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 43.5° Miller-Casella No 24415


Moon 24° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008f9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_137_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008fb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_137_1.jpg)


3 December 1880

No position

2 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 198 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 42 tons 393 lbs


Max. temperature = -8°

Min. temperature = -14.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to N.E. x E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright, though the air was filled at times with clouds of snow driven by the wind from the surface of the floe. Strong winds from S. x W. during forenoon, veering to S.W. blowing a fresh gale with very heavy squalls until midnight.

A large bear coming near the ship at 10am was killed by Mr. Dunbar and the two native hunters, Alexey and Aniguin. Its dimensions were: length 8 feet 3 ½ inches; girth abaft fore-shoulders 5 feet 9 ¼ inches; and its weight 800 pounds. Both bear traps were found sprung, but empty.

At 3am irregular curtain-arch from W. to E. 25° in alt to N'd., and a faint arch 20° in alt. to S'd; at 6am faint aurora in N. and E., and patches of auroral light in S.E; at 6pm four brilliant arches radiating from N.W. and converging in S.E. at alts of 60°, 70° and 80° N. and through zenith; and at midnight a curtain arch from N.W. to N.E. 45° in alt. to N'd.

The usual monthly examination by the surgeon of officers and men is continued and completed to-day.


Moon 23° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd0008fd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_138_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd0008ff: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_138_1.jpg)


4 December 1880

No position

3 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 198 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 42 tons 103 lbs


Max. temperature = -3°

Min. temperature = -20.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to E. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant until the close of the day. Strong W.S.W. wind, moderating as day advanced, and backing to light S.E. airs by 3pm with steadily rising barometer and decreasing temperature. After 3pm freshening easterly breezes, falling barometer and increasing temperature.

At 10am an opening occurred in the old lead about a mile ahead of the ship, and at 11am an opening was found in the old lead about ¼ mile astern of the ship.

At 3am streaks and patches of aurora from east, around by south, to N.W. between 5° and 40° in altitude. At 6am traces of aurora between 5° and 30° in alt. at all points of the compass. Meteor in S.S.W. falling vertically from altitude of 35° to 10° as bright as ✱ Capella, and another in S. falling vertically from altitude of 30° to 10° as bright as ✱ Polaris. At 9am faint arch from E. to W. through zenith.


Moon 21° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000901: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_139_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000903: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_139_1.jpg)


5 December 1880

No position

4 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 198 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 2018 lbs


Max. temperature = 19°

Min. temperature = -3°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to north being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Strong winds from E. and S.E. veering and moderating after noon, with falling barometer in increasing temperature. Very light snow at 9pm and midnight.


Moon 17° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000905: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_140_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000907: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_140_1.jpg)


6 December 1880

Lat 74.00, Long 179.17

5 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 198 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 74° 0'

Longitude by chronometer E. 179° 10'

Lines of position ✱✱ Capella & Vega about 10pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 1728 lbs


Max. temperature = 19°

Min. temperature = -29°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am called all hands to muster, read the act for the government of the Navy, and mustered the crew. The ship was then inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather rapidly clearing after noon, with moderate north-west and west winds, with rapidly rising barometer and rapidly falling temperature, the temperature for the day having an extreme range of 48°.

At 6pm faint auroral arch to the N'd; at 9pm a brilliant arch, with a regular twist like the lay of a strand in a rope, extended through the zenith from N.W. to E. while at its eastern end a low curtain arch, 5° in altitude, spanned the horizon from E. to E.N.E; and at midnight four brilliant curtain arches with bright spiral terminations, extending from N.W. to E. on each side of the zenith and at altitude respectively of 70° and 80°.

At 10am a crack in the ice was found about 300 yards to the east which opened a short distance, closing again, apparently, at 10pm as sounds of ice grinding and snapping were heard at that time from that direction.

At 9am frequent snappings were heard in the ship, due to the action of the low temperature on the metal fastenings.


Moon 12° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 492):

At ten a.m. a crack was found in the ice three hundred yards east. This is the line of the same break that occurred some time ago. At eleven p.m. the crack closed, grinding and groaning going on at a great rate.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000909: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_141_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00090b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_141_1.jpg)


7 December 1880

Lat 73.83, Long 179.17

6 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 183 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 74° 53'

Longitude by chronometer E. 179° 10'

Lines of position ✱✱ Arcturus & Capella


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 1403 lbs


Max. temperature = -25°

Min. temperature = -32°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant, but very cold. Light S.W. breezes with steady barometer.

✱ Capella and other stars of first magnitude clearly visible at noon.

At 3am faint irregular arch from E. to N.W. altitude 20° N. and one E.S.E. to W. altitude 25° S.; at 6am two faint arches, meeting at horizon in E. and W.N.W. at altitudes of 20° N. and S. respectively. At 9pm moon setting. At same time a double curtain arch, 10° in altitude, from N. to E.; and at midnight a brilliant arch from N.W. to E. through zenith, in form a broad band 10° in width with deeply fringed spiral curtain terminations.

At 3am occasional cracking of the ice to N.E.; at 6am sounds of ice grinding to N'd.


Moon 7° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd00090d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_142_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00090f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_142_1.jpg)


8 December 1880

No position

7 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 183 miles to the N'd and W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 1078 lbs


Max. temperature = -9.5°

Min. temperature = -26°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 28 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant during forenoon, cloudy and gloomy during afternoon. Light S.W. breezes backing to south before meridian, veering to S.W. x S. and rapidly freshening between noon and midnight. Steadily falling barometer and rising temperature.

At 3am bright auroral arch from E. to W.; at 6am auroral light in streaks and patches in all parts of the heavens; and at midnight patches of curtain arch 45° in altitude and from N. to N.E.


Moon 2° S.

New moon


50a27fde7438ae05bd000911: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_143_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000913: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_143_1.jpg)


9 December 1880

No position

8 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 183 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 788 lbs


Max. temperature = -5.5°

Min. temperature = -19°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy during forenoon, but generally bright and pleasant during afternoon. The day commences with fresh breezes from S.W. x W. veering by 9am to W.S.W. and while remaining there for the rest of the day, moderating after 9pm. Steady barometer and falling temperature.

At 3am faint aurora to N'd and at midnight a faint arch through zenith from N.W. to east.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 42° Miller-Casella No 24415

2 fathoms = 32° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 43°


Moon 4° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000915: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_144_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000917: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_144_1.jpg)


10 December 1880

No position

9 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 183 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 388 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -29.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant during forenoon with light W.S.W. airs; after noon the sky rapidly clouded while the wind freshened with steady barometer and increasing temperature.

During the evening several loud noises were heard and momentary shocks received, as if the ship were struck by masses of ice passing along the line of the keel.

At 3am faint streak of aurora in N. and N.E., and a meteor bright as a star of the first magnitude passed from near the zenith to the constellation "Cassiopeæ". At 6am patches and streaks of the aurora in all parts of the heavens.


Moon 9° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000919: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_145_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00091b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_145_1.jpg)


11 December 1880

No position

10 December 1880

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 183 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 41 tons 98 lbs


Max. temperature = -9°

Min. temperature = -21.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to E. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and pleasant. Fresh breezes from W.S.W., veering by midnight to W.N.W., the barometer then commencing to rise after a slight steady fall, and the temperature to decrease.

At 3am auroral arch through zenith from N.W. to S.E.; at 6am streaks and patches of auroral light in all parts of the heavens; at 9pm faint arch 30° N. from N.W. to N.E., and a lunar circle 30° in diameter; and at midnight an auroral "loop" from N. to N.E. 45° in altitude.


Moon 13° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd00091d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_146_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00091f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_146_1.jpg)


11 December 1880

Lat 73.73, Long -178.93

[Editor's note: The ship has crossed the 180th meridian to the east again, subtracted one day.]

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 44'

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 56'

Lines of position ✱✱ Arcturus & Capella about 3pm


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 40 tons 2013 lbs


Max. temperature = -19°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant but very cold. Very fresh W.N.W. wind, increasing to moderate gale from N.W. x W. by 6am with very rapidly rising barometer. After 6am the wind steadily moderates and after 6pm backs to W.S.W., while the barometer slowly but steadily rises.

Frequently during the day loud reports like the firing of heavy guns were heard close to the ship, giving her considerable shock. The noises can be accounted for only by a supposed rupture of the ice under the influence of contraction caused by the intense cold.

At 3am auroral arch from E. to W. through zenith. At 6am auroral light between altitudes of 5° and 25° at all points of the compass, though brightest to the S'd.


Moon 17° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 493):

Frequently during the day we were startled by loud reports like the discharges of heavy guns, and the ship was considerably jarred by them. I can only account for these noises by supposing that the heavy ice splits under contraction caused by the intense cold.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000921: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_147_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000923: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_147_1.jpg)


12 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 300 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 40 tons 1713 lbs


Max. temperature = -10.5°

Min. temperature = -37°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer; at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather clear and bright at the commencement of the day, but dull and gloomy with an overcast sky for the remainder. Light S.W. breeze, falling barometer and rising temperature.

At 3am a faint spiral of auroral light from zenith to 45° N. A burr around the Moon.


Moon 20° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000925: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_148_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000927: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_148_1.jpg)


13 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 40 tons 1388 lbs


Max. temperature = -10°

Min. temperature = -18°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling; and the engineer’s force is engaged during the day in forging a new pump brake for the bilge pump attached to the main engine, the old one having been broken.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light S.W. breezes, at one time backing to south, but finally veering to W.S.W. with occasional very fine snow. Slowly falling barometer and nearly uniform temperature.


Moon 22° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd000929: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_149_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00092b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_149_1.jpg)


14 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles N.N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 340 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 40 tons 1048 lbs


Max. temperature = -15.5°

Min. temperature = -39.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to E.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Sky clears rapidly as day advances, weather becoming bright and pleasant though very cold. Light S.W. airs veer and freshen to N.N.W. breezes, with rapidly rising barometer after noon and falling temperature.


Moon 24° N.

First quarter


50a27fde7438ae05bd00092d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_150_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd00092f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_150_1.jpg)


15 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 40 tons 723 lbs


Max. temperature = -40°

Min. temperature = -44.5°

Min. temperature by purple bulb = -48°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather remarkably bright, the sky being absolutely cloudless the entire 24 hours. Light N.W. breezes backing after 3pm, with steadily rising barometer and very low temperature.

Numerous cracks and snappings heard on board ship from the contraction of metal fastenings and occasional sounds from the ice.


Moon 24° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 493):

A very severe day, N.N.W. winds, backing after three p.m., and reaching W.N.W. by midnight. The temperature begins at minus 40°, and steadily falls until it reaches minus 43°; the lowest point of our mercurial thermometer 4,313, spirit thermometer 4,397, then reading minus 40°. The purple bulb spirit thermometer, which agreed very well with our mercurial last winter, was now exposed, and it went down until at midnight it read minus 48°. The sky has been absolutely cloudless all day.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000931: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_151_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000933: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_151_1.jpg)


16 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 40 tons 323 lbs


Max. temperature = -29.5°

Min. temperature = -45°

Min. temperature by purple bulb = -48°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather pleasant, sky partially cloudy, light breeze backing from W. to S., falling barometer and low temperature.

Total eclipse of the Moon beginning at 2am and ending at 3.30am.

At 3am auroral arch from E. to W. A very bright meteor in east falling from N. to S. burst with many colors.

Bright moonlight and starlight generally throughout the day.


Moon 23° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 494):

During the day we had numerous shakes and jars, as though we were passing over ice-cakes. One of these was sufficient to set my lamp swinging.


At three a.m., while lying awake, I heard two singing or humming sounds along our wires in the cabin, resembling the buzz of a bee, or the whiz of a mosquito. These came from the vibrating of the diaphragms in the Bell telephone receiver and sender, indicating an electric storm without, etc. This subject is now receiving particular attention from Chipp, and will be described thoroughly in a more suitable place than this journal.



50a27fde7438ae05bd000935: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_152_0.jpg)

50a27fde7438ae05bd000937: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_152_1.jpg)


17 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 330 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 2233 lbs


Max. temperature = -35°

Min. temperature = -42.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally pleasant, with partly cloudy sky. Light variable airs, falling barometer and low temperature.


Moon 21° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000939: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_153_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00093b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_153_1.jpg)


18 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 1908 lbs


Max. temperature = -21°

Min. temperature = -34°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy, with a cloudy sky until toward midnight. Light S.E. breezes backing to E.N.E. at end of day. Steady barometer and low temperature.

A large lunar circle from midnight to 9am. At end of these 24 hours auroral streaks and patches extending generally from the horizon toward the zenith.


Moon 18° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd00093d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_154_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00093f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_154_1.jpg)


19 December 1880

Lat 73.72, Long -178.77

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 43'

Longitude by chronometer W. 178° 46'

Lines of position Moon & ✱ Jupiter


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 1618 lbs


Max. temperature = -28.5°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer; and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally bright and pleasant though cold. Light easterly airs & slightly rising barometer.

At 3am five auroral arches spanned the sky from E.N.E. to W.S.W.; one passing through the zenith, and two on either side at altitudes of 30° and 60° respectively. The center arch steady, the others vibrating. At 6am faint auroral streaks in E. and W. from 5° to 40° in alt. At 7am bright circle around the Moon, 54° in diameter with three mock moons, one above, one to the right, one to the left, very bright and fringed with prismatic colors. At 9pm three auroral bands from N.N.W. to east.


Moon 14° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000941: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_155_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000943: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_155_1.jpg)


20 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 1293 lbs


Max. temperature = -19°

Min. temperature = -40°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light variable airs freshening to N.W. breezes, with steady barometer and rising temperature, and very light snow at end of day.


Moon 10° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000945: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_156_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000947: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_156_1.jpg)


21 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 1003 lbs


Max. temperature = -16.5°

Min. temperature = -21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather very dark, dull and gloomy. Steady and steadily freshening W.N.W. breeze, with slightly falling barometer and uniform temperature. Very light snow continued to fall all day.


Moon 5° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000949: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_157_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00094b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_157_1.jpg)


22 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 713 lbs


Max. temperature = -17°

Min. temperature = -26°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

The day begins with a moderate gale from W.N.W. and a fall of snow. Wind moderate after noon, barometer rapidly rises, and temperature falls. At times the clouds partially break giving glimpses of the stars overhead, but around the horizon everything continues dull, thick and gloomy. The light snow fall is scattered in clouds of drift along the surface of the floes.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 28.5° – Specific gravity = 1.022 at 44°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 44°


Moon 0° 18' N.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd00094d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_158_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00094f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_158_1.jpg)


23 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 39 tons 278 lbs


Max. temperature = -15°

Min. temperature = -26.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather exceedingly dark, dull and gloomy. Light N.W. and westerly breezes, steadying at N.N.W. and freshening by midnight to a strong wind, with steady fall of fine snow. Rising followed by falling barometer and increasing temperature.

Indications of heavy pressure from the N.W. on the ice about two miles from the ship in that direction. Smooth ice cracked and broken in many places.


Moon 5° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000951: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_159_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000953: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_159_1.jpg)


24 December 1880

Christmas

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 2193 lbs


Max. temperature = -3°

Min. temperature = -15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Strong north wind at beginning of the day, rapidly moderating as day progresses, being succeeded after noon with light variable airs and calms. Rising barometer and increasing temperature.

From 8 to 10pm the crew had a minstrel entertainment in the deck house.


Moon 10° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 495 ff):

In the evening we had a minstrel entertainment in the deck-house, somewhat improved over last year.


GRAND OPENING OF THE NEW" JEANNETTE OPERA HOUSE,

Corner Forecastle Ave. and Bowery,

Friday Evening, Dec. 24, 1880.

Doors open at seven o'clock. Performance at eight.

Complimentary.


The success of the evening, however, was Sharvell as a young lady, in an after-piece. Görtz, as costumer, had made out of our calico a fine dress, with panniers, etc., complete, and found means to construct a beautiful wig of long blonde hair. With these, white stockings and low shoes with blue rosettes, Sharvell transformed himself into a very comely young English miss, quite calm and self-possessed. A feature of the evening was presenting each guest, on entering, with a little button-hole bouquet of colored paper leaves.

The jokes were of the usual order, some broad ones being inevitable. The conundrums were rather feeble: "Should Melville give an alarm of fire, what place would it remind you of?" "Melville Sound." "Why was Chipp like McClellan?" "Because he was liked by his men." "Why was Danenhower like his native city, Washington?" "Because he was at the head of navigation." "Why was I like the mainmast?" "Because I was de long-un." "Why did the crew of this ship resemble the Captain?" "Because he is Commander, and they come-under, too," etc., etc.

Probably, however, the most acceptable occurrence was the issue of a double ration of whiskey, with which, hot water, and sugar, we tried to be cheerful, and make Christmas Eve rather less dreary than many of our days now seem.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000955: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_160_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000957: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_160_1.jpg)


25 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 1868 lbs


Max. temperature = -11.5°

Min. temperature = -7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Light breezes from N'd veering to S.S.E. by noon, and thereafter variable and very light until midnight. Falling barometer and pleasant temperature.

Low red dawn at 9am & bright starlight. At 9pm auroral streaks in N.W. radiating like a fan; at midnight an auroral arch extended from N.W. through zenith to S.E.


Moon 14° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 496):

The day was made as acceptable as possible fore and aft, by the providing of a good dinner from our resources. And I think we may refer to our bills of fare with pardonable pride. Our mince pies were a work of art; though they were made from pemmican and flavored by a bottle of brandy, they were as delicate to the taste as if compounded from beef fresh from market. Hot whiskey punch in the evening fore and aft brought an agreeable close to our second Christmas in the pack.


CHRISTMAS DINNER, 1880


CABIN

BERTH DECK.

The usual Saturday Soup

Soup

Roast Seal, Apple Jelly

Roast Seal, Apple Jelly

Tongue

Bacon (broiled)

Macaroni

Macaroni

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Mince Pies

Mince Pies

Plum Pudding

Figs

Figs

Raisins

Raisins

Dates

Dates

Nuts

Nuts

Candy

Candy

Chocolate or Coffee

Chocolate and Coffee





50a27fdf7438ae05bd000959: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_161_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00095b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_161_1.jpg)


26 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 160 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 1543 lbs


Max. temperature = 4.5°

Min. temperature = -27°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the Commanding Officer inspected the ship. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather dull and gloomy with almost steady fall of light snow, until toward midnight when the sky cleared entirely save for a slight haze about horizon. Light variable airs to noon, steady barometer and pleasant temperature; after noon light W.S.W. breeze, rising barometer and very rapidly decreasing temperature.

At midnight curtain arch through zenith from N.W. to E.S.E.


Moon 18° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd00095d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_162_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00095f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_162_1.jpg)


27 December 1880

Lat 73.62, Long -179.53

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation N. 73° 37'

Longitude by chronometer W. 179° 32'

Lines of position ✱✱ Vega & Arcturus about 10am


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 1218 lbs


Max. temperature = -25°

Min. temperature = -35°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant but very cold. Light S.W. airs backing to S.S.E. with slightly rising barometer. Bright red glow on southern horizon.

At 3am a very remarkable auroral display was observed as follows: a bright auroral curtain about 10° above the horizon from E.N.E. to N.W., generally white but occasionally showing a green shade, and rarely a brownish-red color, which disappeared as soon as seen. Above this curtain the sky was of a deep blue-black color, through which the stars shone brilliantly as they also did through the deepest part of the curtain. Above the deep blue-black color there were irregular spirals and streaks of white light which were in continuous motion, appearing and disappearing rapidly. From E. to W. through zenith was an irregular arch formed of detached streaks of brownish-red light, among which white light would suddenly appear and as suddenly vanish. This arch was about 5° broad. Stars shone with apparently undiminished brilliancy through the deepest color.

Between this arch and a bank of stratus clouds above the southern horizon, the sky was covered with irregular patches and streaks of light which seemed to drift away to windward (S.W.).

At 3.30 all had broken up and drifted to S.W., and there succeeded white flashes all over the sky.

At 6am faint arch from E. to W. through zenith; at 9am faint arch from E.N.E. to N.N.W. alt of 20°. Low faint dawn. At 6pm faint arch 5° in alt N.W. to E; at 9pm double curtain 10° in alt from N.W. to E.; and at midnight irregular curtains 40° and 50° in alt from N.W. to E.


Moon 22° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000961: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_163_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000963: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_163_1.jpg)


28 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 928 lbs


Max. temperature = -32°

Min. temperature = -42°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant though extremely cold. Light southerly and easterly airs and steady barometer.

At 3am auroral streaks and patches in all directions; at 6am faint streaks of aurora through zenith from 20° W. to E. horizon. Bright starlight; at noon bright red glow on southern horizon, continuing until 2pm.

From 6pm to midnight there were brilliant arches and curtains from N.W. to S.E. at altitudes north of 40°, 60°, 75° and 90°, and generally broad streaks and bands of aurora at all points south of zenith. The curtain-arch passing through the zenith would frequently twist up into a spiral, and masses of light would pulsate across it to a large mass at S.E. extremity. Light generally white flashing into pale green.


Moon 23° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000965: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_164_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000967: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_164_1.jpg)


29 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 603 lbs


Max. temperature = -20°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather sometimes bright and pleasant, at other times dull and gloomy, the sky being covered by leaden masses of vapor and haze. During the forenoon light south-easterly airs and low temperature, but in the afternoon the wind backs to the northward of east and a marked rise occurs in the temperature. Slightly falling barometer.

At 3am two bands of aurora; one from E. to N., and the other from east around through south to north-west. At 6am broad faint auroral arch from E.S.E. to west, 20° above southern horizon. Streamers from E. extremity reaching to an altitude of 40°. Patches and streaks of auroral light to N'd, and to N'd & E'd between altitudes of 10° and 30°.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0255 at 33.5°

2 fathoms = 28.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0256 at 36°


Moon 24° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000969: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_165_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00096b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_165_1.jpg)


30 December 1880

No position

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 170 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 38 tons 213 lbs


Max. temperature = -4°

Min. temperature = -21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally pleasant, though sometimes dull and gloomy. Light airs steadily from E. by N. with falling barometer. Temperature rises until noon, and then steadily falls until midnight.

At 9pm faint arch 10° in altitude N. extending from N. to E. At midnight bright curtain 45° in altitude to S'd extending from E. to W. and a broken arch 45° in alt. to N'd extending from N.W. to E.


Moon 22° S.

Last quarter



LOGS FOR JANUARY 1881

Minstrel Show


50a27fdf7438ae05bd00096d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_166_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00096f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_166_1.jpg)


1 January 1881

Lat 73.80, Long 177.53

31 December 1880

[Editor's note: The ship has crossed the 180th meridian to the west again. The correct date is shown in top center, the ship log's date is shown here each day.]

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 196 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Jupiter 6pm N. 73° 48'

Longitude by chronometer from observation ✱ Vega 6pm E. 177° 32'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 37 tons 2118 lbs


Max. temperature = -14°

Min. temperature = -36°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant, though very cold. Light S.S.E. airs begin the day but they veer and finally reach N. by midnight. Steadily rising barometer. As these 24 hours end a bright twisted auroral arch spans the sky from N.W. to S.E. through the zenith.

By actual measurement the thickness of the ice in the immediate vicinity of the ship is found to be 54 inches, being the result of direct freezing since August 31st.

Between 8 and 10pm the crew had a minstrel entertainment in the deck house, and at its termination the Commanding Officer addressed the men assembled a few words of cheer and encouragement in relation to the past and future portions of the expedition.


Provisions condemned during month

14 lbs corned beef

187 lbs oatmeal


Moon 19° S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 497 ff):

The last day of the year and I hope all our trials and troubles have gone with it.

The men had a celebration from eight to ten p.m. in the deck-house, very good minstrels and single acts making an acceptable programme.


THE CELEBRATED JEANNETTE MINSTRELS.


PROGRAMME.


Part I.


Overture

Orchestra

Ella Ree

A. Sweetman

Shoo Fly

H. Wilson

Kitty Wells

Edward Starr

Mignonette

H. Warren

Finale

Company


Intermission.


Part II.


The World-Renowned Aniguin, of the Great Northwest, in his original Comicalities.

The Great Dressier, in his favorite Accordeon Solos.

Mr. John Cole, our favorite Clog and Jig-Dancer.

Wilson, as the great Captain Schmidt of the Dutch Hussars.

Violin Solo. By George Kuehne (Ole Bull's great rival).


Intermission.


Part III.


Concludes the performance with the side-splitting farce of

"MONEY MAKES THE MARE GO."


Mr. Keene Sage

George Boyd

Miss Keene Sage

Miss Sharvell

Charles Tilden, a promising young man in love with Miss Sage

H. Leach

Julius Goodasgold

H. Warren


Costumer, A. Görtz. Property Man, Wm. Nindemann.


JEANNETTE MINSTREL TROUPE.


PROGRAMME.


Part I.


Overture

Company

The Slave

Mr. Sweetman

Nellie Grey

Wilson

What should make you Sad

Boyd

The Spanish Cavalier

Starr

Our Boys

Warren


Part II.


The Great "Ah Sam" and "Tong Sing," in their Wonderful Tragic Performances.

Accordeon Solo, by the Celebrated Artist "Herr Dressler".

Mr. Henry Wilson, in his Serio-Comic Songs.

Alexey and Aniguin still on the Role.


Violin Solo

G. Kuehne

Ellagic Views

Mr. Sweetman


Part III.


To conclude with the popular play

"THE SIAMESE TWINS"


Professor

G. W. Boyd

Agent, in love with Professor's Daughter

H. W. Leach

Professor's Daughter

Miss Chicken

The Twins

P. E. Johnson


H. D. Warren


Friday, December 31st, 1880, "Star Spangled Banner" Company.


Everybody was bright and cheerful, and the performance closed by all hands singing the "Star Spangled Banner." For the sake of saying something cheering to the men, I then made a few remarks to the effect that we were about to turn our backs on the old year and our faces to the new; that this cruise, like every event in life, might be divided into two parts, that which has been and that which is to be. During the past sixteen months we had drifted 1,300 miles, far enough, if in a straight line, to reach the Pole and beyond it; but we were only actually 220 miles north-west of where we were first beset; we had suffered mishap, and danger had confronted us often; we had been squeezed and jammed, tossed and tumbled about, nipped and pressed, until the ship's sides would have burst if they had not been as strong as the hearts they held within them; we had pumped a leaking ship for a year and kept her habitable; we were not yet daunted, but were as ready to dare as ever. We were all here, in good health, etc. We faced the future with a firm hope of doing something worthy of ourselves, worthy of the enterprise of the gentleman whose name was so closely connected with the expedition, worthy of the flag which floats above us, as by the blessing of God we would, and then we could go back to our homes, and with pardonable pride exclaim in the future, "I, too, was a member of the American Arctic Expedition of 1879."



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000971: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_167_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000973: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_167_1.jpg)


2 January 1881

No position

1 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 196 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 37 tons 1793 lbs


Max. temperature = -16.5°

Min. temperature = -31°


The New Year was ushered in by the ringing of the ship's bell and the cheering of the crew assembled on the quarter deck.

The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and bright. The day begins with light north airs, which soon veer to N.E. x E. and rapidly freshen, blowing strong at midnight. Steady barometer and slowly increasing temperature.

At 3am auroral patches in irregular loops from N.W. to S.E.


Moon 14° S.

New moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000975: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_168_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000977: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_168_1.jpg)


3 January 1881

No position

2 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 196 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 37 tons 1468 lbs


Max. temperature = -15.5°

Min. temperature = -17.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am called "all hands to muster". Read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The Commanding Officer then inspected the ship. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally bright and clear. Moderate E.N.E. gale, with rising barometer and uniform temperature. Heavy squalls from 9pm to midnight. A light fall of snow at 3am and for the rest of the day the snow was drifted in clouds along the surface of the floe.

At 6am faint streaks of aurora from horizon at E.N.E. to 45° in altitude. Faint auroral light about 5° above S.E. horizon. At midnight faint arch through zenith from N.W. to S.E.


Moon 9° S.

New moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000979: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_169_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00097b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_169_1.jpg)


4 January 1881

No position

3 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 196 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 37 tons 1108 lbs


Max. temperature = -9.5°

Min. temperature = -18°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded at noon in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

The usual physical examination of officers and men, each month, was made to-day by the surgeon.

The wind continued at E.N.E. blowing a moderate gale, with slowly rising barometer and increasing temperature. Very heavy squalls at times whirling the surface snow in clouds and drifting them in large masses against and on board of the ship. By midnight the ship was heavily banked-in up to her rail.

Generally bright weather. A bank of clouds, or something resembling a bank of clouds, laid low in the S.W. horizon with no movement or change during the entire day.

At midnight a bright twisted arch extended through the zenith from N.W. to E.N.E.


Moon 4° S.

New moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd00097d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_170_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00097f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_170_1.jpg)


5 January 1881

Lat 74.13, Long 175.53

4 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Jupiter 6pm N. 74° 8'

Longitude by chronometer from observation ✱ Vega 6pm E. 175° 32'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 37 tons 748 lbs


Max. temperature = -9.5°

Min. temperature = -23.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and, except the low bank mentioned yesterday, cloudless. After 3pm this bank could be no longer distinguished.

Moderate gale, from E. x N. moderating rapidly after noon with decreasing temperature. Barometer rapidly rises.

At 3am two auroral bands from E. to W; at 6 bright streaks of aurora from E.N.E. to N.N.W. at an altitude of 50° and a faint arch from E. to S.W. at an altitude of 20°, with detached patches above the arch.

At 6pm pencils of auroral light making an arch 5° in alt from N.W. to N.E. and at midnight an irregular curtain arch 15° in altitude from N.W. to N.E.

An old crack in the ice, about 250 yards east of the ship, opened to day to a width of one foot.

The planet Venus was on the meridian at 3pm about 2° above horizon, very bright and dazzling, and much enlarged, caused to seemingly dance about by refraction.


Moon 2° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 503):

The old crack, two hundred and fifty yards east of the ship, opened again to the width of one foot.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000981: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_171_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000983: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_171_1.jpg)


6 January 1881

No position

5 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 37 tons 423 lbs


Max. temperature = -17°

Min. temperature = -26.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant at the beginning of the day, but somewhat dull and gloomy during the remainder. E.N.E. breezes growing light, backing to north and finally dying out. Slightly falling barometer and varying temperature.

Between 2.50 and 3am the ice seemed to be in general motion though nothing could be detected by the eye. The ship received several sharp pressures. The lead mentioned yesterday as opening to a width of one foot was found closed to-day.

At 3am faint arch from E. to W. 80° above southern horizon; at 6am faint arch 15° above southern horizon. At 9pm faint arch from N.W. to S.E. through zenith; and at midnight faint auroral patches at irregular intervals.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 46.5°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 47.5°


Moon 7° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 503):

At three a.m. one would have believed we were in for a lively time. At 2.50 the ice seemed in general excitement, snapping and grinding, while the ship experienced several severe nips. The quartermaster was running into the cabin to report, but was met by Chipp on his way to make weather observations, so I was not aware of it. The quartermaster's impression was that everything was about to turn upside down. Chipp says the ice was cracking and grinding under his feet right alongside. In ten minutes all was quiet again, and when daylight came the only sign of any change was the closing together of the lead opened yesterday.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000985: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_172_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000987: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_172_1.jpg)


7 January 1881

No position

6 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 445 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 2218 lbs


Max. temperature = -6.5°

Min. temperature = -27°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather at times dull and gloomy, and occasionally bright and pleasant. Light northerly airs, slowly falling barometer and rapidly increasing temperature. Light flurries of snow at 3 and 6pm.

At 6am faint auroral arch from E.S.E. to N.W. at an altitude of 75° above N.E. horizon.


Moon 12° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000989: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS /Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_173_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00098b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_173_1.jpg)


8 January 1881

No position

7 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 1928 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = -4°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light N.E. breeze, steady barometer, and pleasant temperature. Light flurries of snow from time to time.


Moon 16° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 504):

The gale which we had some days ago, and which sent us spinning away to the northwest, played some curious freaks. It not only buried the ship to her rails, but it laid out the surface snow into long ridges sastrugi, which give our surrounding floe the appearance of a newly-plowed field. These ridges piled up in straight lines running to leeward and as hard as ice, and making walking difficult, lead me to many a tumble as I poke about with a lantern, reading thermometers, etc.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd00098d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_174_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00098f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_174_1.jpg)


9 January 1881

No position

8 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 330 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 1598 lbs


Max. temperature = -1.5°

Min. temperature = -15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. x S. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and pleasant during forenoon, dull and gloomy during the afternoon. Up to 12.30pm the sky has a hard windy look, but at that hour the cloud forms suddenly change and the sky assumes a soft and fleecy appearance.

Light northerly airs backing to west toward noon, with rapidly rising barometer thence forward. Variable but generally decreasing temperature.


Moon 19° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000991: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_175_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000993: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_175_1.jpg)


10 January 1881

No position

9 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 330 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 1268 lbs


Max. temperature = -10°

Min. temperature = -32°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 29 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to south being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally bright and pleasant though very cold in the middle of the day. Light N.W. breezes veering to E.N.E. by 9pm; to which hour the barometer steadily rises but then begins to fall.


Moon 22° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000995: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_176_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000997: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_176_1.jpg)


11 January 1881

No position

10 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 233 miles to the N'd & W'd of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 330 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 938 lbs


Max. temperature = 6.5°

Min. temperature = -25°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Fresh E.N.E. wind blowing, whirling the surface snow in drifts. Falling barometer and rapidly increasing temperature.


Moon 23° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000999: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_177_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00099b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_177_1.jpg)


12 January 1881

Lat 74.22, Long 174.32

11 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 251 miles to the N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Jupiter 6pm N. 74° 13'

Longitude by chronometer from observation ✱ Vega 6pm E. 174° 19'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 578 lbs


Max. temperature = 10°

Min. temperature = -19.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy during the forenoon, bright and pleasant during the afternoon. Moderate east wind veering to light southerly airs with slightly rising barometer and rapidly decreasing temperature.

From 6pm to midnight lunar halo 5° in diameter. Showing brilliant prismatic colors.


Moon 24° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd00099d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_178_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd00099f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_178_1.jpg)


13 January 1881

No position

12 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 251 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 36 tons 288 lbs


Max. temperature = 6°

Min. temperature = -21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Light easterly airs and moderate breezes from E. x N. with slightly falling barometer and rapidly increasing temperature.

At 3am lunar halo showing prismatic colors. At midnight a very heavy water sky close to horizon from N.W. to east.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 47°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 48°


Moon 23° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009a1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_179_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009a3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_179_1.jpg)


14 January 1881

No position

13 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 251 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 2093 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = -5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Light variable airs, slightly rising barometer and pleasant temperature.


Moon 21° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009a5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_180_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009a7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_180_1.jpg)


15 January 1881

No position

14 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 251 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 1803 lbs


Max. temperature = -1°

Min. temperature = -13.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Light variable airs settling by 6pm to a light breeze from E.N.E. Rising barometer and steadily decreasing temperature. Occasional flakes of snow at and after 9pm.


Moon 19° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009a9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_181_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009ab: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_181_1.jpg)


16 January 1881

Lat 74.23, Long 173.99

15 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Jupiter 6pm N. 74° 14'

Longitude by chronometer from observation ✱ Vega 6pm E. 173° 59' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 1513 lbs


Max. temperature = -14°

Min. temperature = -40.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy at the beginning of the day, but becomes bright and pleasant though intensely cold. Light easterly breezes backing to light westerly airs with rising followed by steady barometer.

At 3pm planets and stars of the first magnitude were plainly visible. At 9pm and midnight faint irregular auroral arch from N.W. to east 20° in altitude.


Moon 15° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009ad: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_182_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009af: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_182_1.jpg)


17 January 1881

No position

16 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 1188 lbs


Max. temperature = -18.2°

Min. temperature = -42.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Light westerly breezes, with falling barometer. Intensely cold during the forenoon, but rapidly moderating toward midnight.

About 1pm the ship received several shocks aft as if pieces of ice were passing under her and striking her keel.


Moon 11° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009b1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_183_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009b3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_183_1.jpg)


18 January 1881

No position

17 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 898 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -20.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy, dull and gloomy with occasional snow after noon. Light westerly breezes, falling barometer and rising temperature.


Moon 6° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009b5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_184_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009b7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_184_1.jpg)


19 January 1881

No position

18 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 463 lbs


Max. temperature = -12.5°

Min. temperature = -28°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy until noon, bright and pleasant afterwards. Light westerly breeze backing steadily and growing lighter, ending the day with a light E.S.E. air. Steadily rising barometer and as steadily falling temperature.

A light fall of snow at 6 and 9am.

At 6pm auroral patches 10° above horizon in all directions. At midnight lines of faint aurora diverging from a point N.E. and converging to a point S.W., passing north and south of zenith, while all around the compass at an altitude of 15° lay masses of cloud-like auroral light resting seemingly on a band of nimbus clouds.


Moon 2° N.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009b9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_185_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009bb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_185_1.jpg)


20 January 1881

No position

19 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 35 tons 173 lbs


Max. temperature = -21.2°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

By calculation of the amount of water pumped out during these 24 hours, the amount of the leak estimated at 2692 gallons per diem.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to north being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy to 3pm, and after that time bright and pleasant. Light south-easterly airs and breezes, rising barometer and rising succeeded by rapidly falling temperature.

Thermometers and other meteorological instruments are read at noon without the aid of artificial light.

At 10pm brilliant auroral arch, in thin streaks, from east to west through zenith


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 42°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 42°


Moon 3° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009bd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_186_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009bf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_186_1.jpg)


21 January 1881

No position

20 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 1978 lbs


Max. temperature = -41°

Min. temperature = -45.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Light airs from S.E. veering to S.W. with almost steady barometer and intensely cold weather. Sky nearly clear in the middle of the day and absolutely cloudless before 9am and after 6pm.

At 6pm a curtain arch extended from N.W. to E. 15° in altitude; at 9pm an irregular arch extended from N.W. to E. 30° in altitude; and at midnight patches of faint auroral light were scattered over the whole sky.


Moon 8° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009c1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_187_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009c3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_187_1.jpg)


22 January 1881

No position

21 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 1653 lbs


Max. temperature = -35.5°

Min. temperature = -43.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Light S.W. airs with steady rising barometer and low temperature.

At 6am faint streaks of aurora in E. and W. direction from zenith to 10° above southern horizon; at 6pm, a bank of auroral light extended from E. to W. through south, parallel to and 10° above horizon from which pencils of light shot upward; at 9pm patches and pencils of auroral light with broken curtain fringes from N.W. around by north to S.S.E.; and at midnight a spiral curtain arch of pea-green light passing through zenith extended from E.N.E. to W.S.W. and a curved bank south from S.E. to S.W. and 10° in altitude showed a dark segment beneath extending to the horizon. Numerous detached pencils or sprays of auroral light were scattered over the sky.


Moon 13° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009c5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_188_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009c7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_188_1.jpg)


23 January 1881

Lat 74.13, Long 173.43

22 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Jupiter 4.30pm N. 74° 8'

Longitude by chronometer from observation ✱ Vega 4.30pm E. 173° 26'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 1328 lbs


Max. temperature = -31°

Min. temperature = -45°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and bright except in the middle of the day when it was dull and gloomy with an overcast sky. Light southerly airs, rising barometer with very low temperatures. Between 9am and 3pm there was a marked rise in temperature and a stand at a comfortable degree of heat, but it was followed by a return to the usual low figure.

At 3am patches of aurora from E. to W. through zenith; at 6am patches of aurora from N. around by E. to S.W. between altitudes of 5° and 10°. At 9pm brilliant arch from N.W. to S.E. through zenith with ends curving to N'd, while north and south of zenith respectively was a less brilliant arch extending parallel to the first and reaching nearly to the horizon; at 10pm a number of brilliant arches generally from N.W. to S.E. through or near zenith, with brilliant loops and curtain patches in all directions; and at midnight the same display continued but much fainter in brightness.


Moon 17° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009c9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_189_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009cb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_189_1.jpg)


24 January 1881

No position

23 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 1038 lbs


Max. temperature = -44°

Min. temperature = -47°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant, the sky being cloudless much of the time. Light southerly airs veering to light S.W. breeze with rapidly rising and extraordinarily high barometer, and uniformly very low temperature. At noon there was a bright red glow on southern horizon, and at 3pm the S.W. (true) horizon had a warm red glow. Remarkably clear atmosphere in all directions, though the horizon was much raised by refraction.

At 3am an auroral arch from S.E. to S.W. 10° in altitude, and also broken curtain and irregular streaks and patches from W.N.W. around by north to S.E. 10° to 15° in altitude, at 6am arch from S.E. to S.W. 10° in altitude, with streaks and patches in E. and W. direction from arch to zenith.

About 9pm there was a remarkable auroral display which is described by Lieut. Chipp as follows: "At about 8.50pm there were 3 auroral curtains extending in arches from a mass of green and yellow light near the N.W. horizon to near the east horizon. The upper arch was about 60° and the others about 45° and 30° respectively. The highest arch was the most brilliant. The general color was a bright yellow. Suddenly a brown-red color flashed across from N.W. to E., and the curtains were violently agitated. Luminous rays formed, darting across the curtains with variable lengths. Meanwhile the curtains undulated violently with short quick waves from N.W. to E., and at the same time would change their altitudes up and down about 5°, keeping about the same space apart. The darting of rays and rapid undulations, gave the arches the appearance of torrents of light rushing from N.W. to E. The lower parts of the curtains were cherry-red, next green, while the greater part was of a bright yellow. The cherry-red rays from the bases of the curtains flashing in with rays of green and yellow caused many colors to be seen, so that the lower halves of the curtains looked not unlike irregular rainbows violently agitated. During this display the north end of the galvanometer needles connected in the cabin was deflected 20° E. (not an unusual amount) having been 10° east at 8pm and again at 9.10pm when the great brilliancy had ceased."

Another description, by Lieut. DeLong is as follows: "At 9pm from the N.W. horizon there projected upward a curving column of brilliant green and reddish-pink light in violent movement (resembling the movement but far exceeding the brightness of a flame shooting from a Castan signal light) which, while undergoing twistings and undulations every half second spread out at an altitude of 10° above the horizon into 3 magnificent curtain arches spanning the sky at altitudes of 35° 40° and 45° respectively and extending to the eastern horizon. These arches were in a state of violent agitation, flashing, trembling and pulsating every half second while receiving and passing along repeated changes from the supplying column. The upper portion of each curtain was of the usual greenish-white color, the middle portion was of a vivid pale green; and the under portion consisted of an exceedingly delicate pink fringe which trembled and quivered without rest. Numerous bands above and beneath the arch showed the pulsations of colored lights also but to no very marked extent. In about 15 minutes the supply seemed to diminish in the column and the lights to grow faint. The arches and bands then rose, massing at the zenith in an arch 10° in width while some of the pulsations were repeated, but backward, as if returning to their source, and the broad arch separated into several narrower ones, loops, and coronas, leaving the sky in a state of general illumination."


Moon 21° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009cd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_190_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009cf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_190_1.jpg)


25 January 1881

No position

24 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 748 lbs


Max. temperature = -36°

Min. temperature = -50°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant though intensely cold. Light S.W. airs, backing to an increasing breeze from E.N.E. The barometer rises to the extraordinary height of 31.124 by 9am, but commences to fall with the setting in of the E.N.E. wind, and is falling steadily at midnight, while the temperature steadily increases.

At 6am faint arch from E.N.E. to N.W. 20° in alt. with patches and streaks from E. to S.W. between 30° and 5°. At 9pm irregular arch N.W. to E. 45° in altitude.


Moon 23° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009d1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_191_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009d3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_191_1.jpg)


26 January 1881

No position

25 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 423 lbs


Max. temperature = -4.5°

Min. temperature = -36°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

E.N.E. wind increasing to fresh gale driving clouds of snow from the surface of the ice and banking them up against and on board of the ship.

Rapidly falling barometer and steadily increasing temperature. Toward midnight the wind abated somewhat and there were frequent lulls.


Moon 24° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009d5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_192_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009d7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_192_1.jpg)


27 January 1881

No position

26 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 260 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 34 tons 63 lbs


Max. temperature = 3.5°

Min. temperature = -4°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump. The engineer's force are engaged in repairing the socket of the pump brake of the bilge pump to the main engine, which socket was broken yesterday by attempting to pump while water had frozen in the plug cock of the discharge pipe.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with a blank leaden-gray sky. Easterly gale rapidly moderates and finally dies out, a perfect calm succeeding at midnight. Slowly falling barometer and uniformly pleasant temperature. Very fine north falling at midnight. Beautiful deposit of frost feathers and all exposed objects during the afternoon.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0236 at 45°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 46°


Moon 23° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009d9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_193_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009db: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_193_1.jpg)


28 January 1881

Lat 74.35, Long 173.17

27 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 272 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude Jupiter N. 74° 21'

Longitude by chronometer from time sight ✱ Capella E. 173° 10'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 485 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 33 tons 1818 lbs


Max. temperature = 2°

Min. temperature = -27°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump. The engineer's force are still engaged repairing pump brake socket of the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy in the forenoon but bright and pleasant in the afternoon. Light S.W. airs with rapidly rising barometer and as rapidly falling temperature. Occasional light snow during the forenoon.

From 6pm to midnight auroral streaks resembling cirro-stratus clouds were to be seen to the N'd.


Moon 21° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 508):

Light southerly airs, position obtained showing a drift of thirteen and one fourth miles N. 20° W. since 22d. Latitude 74° 20' 56" N., longitude 173° 10' E., — the highest latitude we have obtained in the nineteen months' cruising! Slow music!



50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009dd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_194_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009df: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_194_1.jpg)


29 January 1881

No position

28 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 272 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 33 tons 1528 lbs


Max. temperature = -2°

Min. temperature = -25.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

The day commences with light S.E. airs which increase to light E. and E.N.E. breezes, and they continue until 2pm when the wind steadily and slowly backs to W.N.W. and freshens considerably; a falling barometer changing to a rising barometer, and an increasing temperature changing to a rapidly falling one, in remarkable correspondence with the shifts of wind.

At midnight there were auroral streaks in all directions at a general altitude of 10° above the horizon.


Moon 17° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009e1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_195_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009e3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_195_1.jpg)


30 January 1881

No position

29 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 272 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 33 tons 1238 lbs


Max. temperature = -14.5°

Min. temperature = -30°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant during the forenoon, dull and gloomy during the afternoon. Light N.W. breezes veering to E.N.E. and freshening, with uniformly high barometer and slowly rising temperature.

At 6pm sounds were heard of grinding and moving ice in the N.E.

At midnight auroral patch in E.N.E.


Moon 12° S.

New moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009e5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_196_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009e7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_196_1.jpg)


31 January 1881

No position

30 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 272 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 33 tons 948 lbs


Max. temperature = -3.5°

Min. temperature = -15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 30 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to W. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Easterly gale all day, blowing hardest about noon. Steadily falling barometer and increasing temperature. A little snow fell about 6pm, but clouds of drift were swept from the surface of the ice and banked up against and on board of the ship.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.


Moon 6° S.

New moon



LOGS FOR FEBRUARY 1881


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009e9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_197_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009eb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_197_1.jpg)


1 February 1881

No position

31 January 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 272 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 33 tons 623 lbs


Max. temperature = 0.5°

Min. temperature = -4°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 ¾ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Easterly gale moderating slowly to a strong wind from E.S.E. Steadily rising barometer and uniformly high temperature. Clouds of drifting snow during the day and a light snow falling at midnight.

At noon a dark streak in the sky to the eastward indicated a strip of open water in that direction.

The thickness of the ice is found to be 5 feet 4 inches, being the result of direct freezing since August 31st 1880.


Provisions condemned during month

2 7/8 lbs vegetable soup – spoiled

6 lbs roast mutton – spoiled

4 ¼ lbs roast beef – spoiled


Moon 30' S.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 508):

Ice found by actual measurement to be five feet four inches thick by direct freezing since August 31st, and a gain of ten inches in the past month. As all our measurements are made by boring in a protected place, no increase of thickness is due to snow-drift freezing on the surface. We get the actual growth, and naturally all increase is on the underside.


It is worthy of note, that the upper half is much the harder. It is with great difficulty that the auger is got down, the ice offering as great resistance as plate-glass or rock, and the pieces broken out by the auger threads being as firm as flint. Through the lower half the boring is much easier, the ice seeming to be softer and more yielding.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009ed: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_198_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009ef: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_198_1.jpg)


2 February 1881

Lat 74.65, Long 172.42

1 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 295 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude Jupiter N. 74° 39'

Longitude by chronometer from time sight ✱ Capella E. 172° 25'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 33 tons 298 lbs


Max. temperature = 0.5°

Min. temperature = -13.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 33 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to north being indicated by the lead line.

Strong E.S.E. wind all day with rising barometer and decreasing temperature.

The usual monthly examination into the physical condition of officers and men was commenced and concluded by the surgeon.

At 3am streaks of aurora through zenith in E.S.E. and W.N.W. directions; at 6am patches of auroral light at from 10° to 30° in alt. At noon a bright red glare showed the proximity of the Sun to our horizon. At 3pm the Moon, Jupiter, Saturn, Venus and Aldebaran only were visible. At 9pm auroral patch E.N.E. 5° in alt; and at midnight a faint auroral arch from S.E. to N.W. 60° above southern horizon.


Moon 5° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 508 ff):

Taking advantage of a break in the generally prevailing cloudiness, Chipp gets a set of sights to-day by which our position is determined to be in 74° 39' N., and 172° 25' E., a drift since the 27th January of thirty-two miles N. 33° W. This is our highest latitude thus far, but not the highest I hope for the cruise.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009f1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_199_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009f3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_199_1.jpg)


3 February 1881

No position

2 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 295 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 2138 lbs


Max. temperature = -6.2°

Min. temperature = -13°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Strong S.E. wind all day with rapidly falling barometer and slowly rising temperature. What little snow is left on the surface of the ice is swept along in drifts here and there.

During the forenoon the old lead ½ mile astern of the ship opens to a width of 50 yards, and extending in a curve from N.W. to east.

Alexey and Aniguin, going out to the lead, see, kill and bring in a seal.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 41.5°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 42.5°


Moon 10° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 513):

The old lead astern is opened to-day, and before ice can form Alexey and Aniguin go out to it and fortunately get a seal.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009f5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_200_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009f7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_200_1.jpg)


4 February 1881

No position

3 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 295 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 1703 lbs


Max. temperature = 0.5°

Min. temperature = -5.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Clean lead. A rapid drift to N. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Fresh breezes from S.S.E. and S.E. x S. with rapidly falling barometer and increasing temperature.

Steady snow fall from 12.30pm to midnight.


Moon 15° N.

New moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009f9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_201_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009fb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_201_1.jpg)


5 February 1881

No position

4 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 295 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 1378 lbs


Max. temperature = 0.5°

Min. temperature = -21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 42 fathoms. Bottom of thin mud. A moderate drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy until midnight when the sky clears somewhat. The day commences with a fresh S.E. breeze which veers slowly and moderates until it reaches west when the wind freshens, gaining strength at midnight ~ W.N.W. Slightly falling barometer with increasing temperature, followed by rapidly rising barometer and as rapidly decreasing temperature.

Occasional light snow fall.

At midnight faint auroral arch from N.W. to E.N.E. through zenith.


Moon 19° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009fd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_202_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd0009ff: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_202_1.jpg)


6 February 1881

Lat 74.82, Long 171.82

5 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude Saturn N. 74° 49'

Longitude by chronometer from time sight ✱ Capella E. 171° 49'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 1088 lbs


Max. temperature = -21°

Min. temperature = -43°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant though very cold. Fresh westerly breeze growing light as the day advances and backing to E.N.E. by midnight with but slightly changing barometer.

The sun showing himself on our horizon at noon, for the first time since November 10th, 1880.

At 6am bright auroral arch from E.S.E. to west 10° in altitude: at 9pm faint spiral curtain from N.W. to E. through zenith.


Moon 21° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 514 ff):

To-day we commenced with N.W. wind, but it backs, and grows light in so doing, until at midnight it is from east, and the temperature falls to a disagreeably low figure; though between nine p.m. and midnight it jumps up from minus 36.5° to minus 26.5°. I may say, however, with perfect correctness that the cold seems to affect us less this year than it did last, and though our night has been longer now than then, it has passed away with seemingly greater speed. I cannot explain the first fact, because it is contrary to general experience; the second, however, is easily accounted for by our exemption from pressures and ice movements. Last year we were never easy — jam, smash, jam, and smash — until finally we had our stem sprung, and a leaking ship to care for and preserve. This year we have not been disturbed at all. The doctor puts it very well when he says, "Last winter I went to bed expecting to be turned out, and was surprised that I was not; but this winter I go to bed expecting not to be turned out, and would be very much surprised if I were."



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a01: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_203_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a03: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_203_1.jpg)


7 February 1881

No position

6 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 653 lbs


Max. temperature = -23°

Min. temperature = -41°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The Baxter boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 41 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant though very cold. After 8pm the sky was absolutely cloudless, with bright moonlight and starlight. Light E.N.E. wind backing steadily, growing lighter in the afternoon, and reaching west by midnight. Slowly falling barometer to noon, followed by slowly rising barometer.

At 6pm bright spiral arch from N.W. to E.N.E. 60° above northern horizon; at 9pm low flat arch E.N.E. to N.W. 20° above southern horizon which arch had pencils of light shooting upward from its E.N.E. end; and at midnight auroral patches and streaks 20° above N. horizon and extending from E. to W.

At 11am called all hands to muster, read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The ship was then inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was read in the cabin.


Moon 23° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a05: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_204_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a07: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_204_1.jpg)


8 February 1881

No position

7 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 363 lbs


Max. temperature = -33.5°

Min. temperature = -45.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S. x E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant though very cold. Light west breeze veering to N.E. with rising barometer.

At 3am faint arch from E.S.E. to W.S.W. 15° in altitude; at 6am faint arch E.N.E. to W.S.W. through zenith, with auroral patches in N.E.; at 9pm bright auroral streamers from N.W. toward zenith; and at midnight auroral streaks and bands, N.W. to E. between 10° and 50° above horizon.

Sunrise 10h 22m, sunset 1h 10m. Low clear dawn in E.S.E. at 6am.


Moon 24° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a09: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_205_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a0b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_205_1.jpg)


9 February 1881


No position

8 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 32 tons 38 lbs


Max. temperature = -3°

Min. temperature = -34.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.W. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. The sun was hidden by clouds all the time he was above the horizon. Fresh N.E. breezes veering to E.S.E. and growing lighter. Falling barometer followed by rising barometer, and steadily rising temperature. A few flakes fell about 6pm.


Moon 23° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a0d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_206_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a0f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_206_1.jpg)


10 February 1881

No position

9 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 1953 lbs


Max. temperature = -4.5°

Min. temperature = -18.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to west being indicated by the lead line.

Light S.E. and E. airs with steadily rising barometer and decreasing temperature. The sun showed the upper limb of his disc for a few moments only at noon above a cloud bank.

The lead ½ mile astern of the ship opened to a width of about 50 yards in some places, the opening extending generally in a curve from N.W. to E.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 48°

2 fathoms = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 48°


Moon 22° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a11: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_207_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a13: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_207_1.jpg)


11 February 1881

No position

10 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 1628 lbs


Max. temperature = 9°

Min. temperature = -16°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler was used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Sunrise 10h 14m, sunset obscured. Streaks of daylight in S.W. at 6pm.

Weather dull and gloomy during the forenoon, clearing partially between noon and midnight. Light easterly airs veering to moderate S.E. breeze. Slightly falling barometer and steady increase of temperature.

At 9pm streak of water sky in E.S.E.

At midnight two rays of auroral light started from the E.N.E. horizon and, diverging at an angle of 45°, extended to an altitude of 25°.


Moon 19° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a15: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_208_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a17: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_208_1.jpg)


12 February 1881

No position

11 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 1338 lbs


Max. temperature = 9°

Min. temperature = -7.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and pleasant, though considerable fog extended at times to an altitude of 30° from all compass points. Light S.E. breeze backing to easterly airs with rising barometer and pleasant temperatures.

The upper limb of the sun showed above a fog bank at noon. His rising and setting were both obscured. From 6pm to midnight, a lunar halo showing brilliant prismatic colors; and a double fog bow.


Moon 16° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a19: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_209_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a1b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_209_1.jpg)


13 February 1881

No position

12 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 1048 lbs


Max. temperature = 15.5°

Min. temperature = -6.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 42 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to north being indicated by the lead line.

Light airs from E.N.E. veer, and freshen to strong breezes in so doing, until they reach W.N.W. at midnight. Barometer falls until the wind in veering passes south, when it rises quickly reaching an unusual height at close of these 24 hours. The thermometer steadily rises to an unusual height in like conformity with the veering wind and then quickly falls. The clouds are of a generally soft character in appearance.

At midnight a lunar halo 5° in diameter showing faint prismatic colors.


Moon 12° N.

First quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a1d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_210_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a1f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol003of004/vol003_210_1.jpg)


14 February 1881

No position

13 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 308 miles to the N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 758 lbs


Max. temperature = 2°

Min. temperature = -17°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to south being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather sometimes bright and pleasant, and frequently dull and gloomy with a heavily clouded sky. Strong N.W. winds growing lighter as they veer, reaching east by 9pm and there remaining as day ends. Barometer rises to a remarkable height, slightly falling toward midnight. Rapidly falling followed by slowly rising temperature.

Sunrise obscured, but the sun in sight at 9am above a low bank of cloud. Sunset at 2h 40m.


Moon 8° N.

Full moon



LOG BOOK – 15 FEBRUARY 1881 TO 11 JUNE 1881


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a21: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_001_0.jpg)

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Title Page

Commencing February 14th, 1881 (February 15th, 1881) at Lat 75° 4' N., Long 171° 3' E., at which point the vessel still beset is drifting in the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean, Herald Island bearing S.E. (true) and distant 330 miles


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a29: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_003_0.jpg)

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50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a3f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_008_1.jpg)


15 February 1881

Lat 75.07, Long 171.05

14 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation 7.15am meridian altitude ✱ Capella N. 75° 4'

Longitude by chronometer from observation 7.15am ✱ Arcturus E. 171° 3'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 468 lbs


Max. temperature = -0.5°

Min. temperature = -13°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 44 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant, and at times absolutely cloudless with bright moonlight and starlight. East winds veered to S. x E. and freshened considerably in so doing, with steadily falling barometer and as steadily increasing temperature.

Sunrise obscured. Sun first sun above cloud bank at 9h 15m. Sunset at 2h 49m.

At 6pm a beautiful segment of a curtain arch formed regularly from N.W. to N. beginning with a single pencil from a point 10° above horizon. At midnight two bright curtain arches from N.W. to E.N.E. at 45° and 60° altitude, and two faint arches south of zenith from N.W. to S.E. at altitude also of 45° and 60°. The ends of the curtain arches were spiral in shape and bent back to the N'd from E.N.E. just clear of the horizon.


Moon 3° N.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 517):

Mr. Newcomb while out to-day noticed a piece of ice of this year's formation, he thinks, with icicles a foot or more in length, from which drops of water were ready to fall. These icicles were hanging from the south side of the piece of ice, and were sharpened to quite an edge southeast and northwest, as if cut by a blast of drifting snow during our late heavy southeast winds. The sun was about 5° above the horizon, the temperature of the air minus 9°. He brought a piece on board with icicles depending, and upon melting it I tasted some of the water, and found it unpleasantly salt, accustomed as I am to distilled water. The specific gravity proved, however, to be 1.0005, and that is fresher than anything we have seen thus far from sea-water ice.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a41: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_009_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a43: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_009_1.jpg)


16 February 1881

Lat 74.98, Long 171.94

15 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 314 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Aldebaran 6.30pm N. 74° 59'

Longitude by chronometer from observation time sight Venus E. 171° 56' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 31 tons 178 lbs


Max. temperature = -0.5°

Min. temperature = -18.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded at 10am in 57 fathoms. Brown mud. A very rapid drift to E. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant, and after 9am the sky was absolutely cloudless. The day opens with strong southerly winds which moderate rapidly after noon, and veer steadily reaching E.N.E. by midnight and there blowing in light airs. Barometer falls slowly until the wind in veering passes west when it rises rapidly. Steadily falling temperature.

Sunrise 9h 5m, sunset 3h 5m.

At 3am a very beautiful aurora was visible, and is thus described by Passed Assistant Surgeon Ambler: "An auroral curtain arch extended from N.W. x W. through the zenith to S.E. x E. It was composed of striae of great brilliancy, while between them were masses of luminous nebulae not so intense in brightness. The lower edge of the whole arch was frequently interrupted in its regular form, as if made up of rays of greater intensity and longer axes than the luminous nebulae before referred to. Pulsations of the most brilliant purple, green, and white colors went from one end to the other. As I looked, the arch flashed into a corona. The rays ascended, forming as they lengthened, a hollow cane into the inside of which I could see. The most rapid change of color took place up and down the side of the cane (the colors being more beautiful than I ever saw them) and most brilliant at the apex. The angle of inclination of the striae corresponded seemingly with the angle of the dipping-needle."

At 9pm three irregular auroral bands from S.E. to N.W. 20°, 30° and 40° respectively above the southern horizon; and at midnight a bright curtain arch, 15° above northern horizon, from N.W. to N.E., and a faint curtain arch 15° above southern horizon from S.W. to S.E.


Moon 2° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a45: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_010_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a47: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_010_1.jpg)


17 February 1881

No position

16 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 314 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 2128 lbs


Max. temperature = -16°

Min. temperature = -18.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded at 10am in 52 fathoms. Sticky mud bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear and bright, the sky being absolutely cloudless all day. Light easterly breezes veering to S.E. with slightly rising barometer and uniform temperature.

Sunrise 8h 57m, sunset 3h 5m. Low red dawn at 6am.

At 3am faint auroral arch from S.E. to S.S.W. at an altitude of 10°; at 6am streaks of aurora in E. and W. directions extending from zenith to 5° above southern horizon. At 9pm, a mass of auroral light, in shape resembling a cornucopia, at E.S.E. horizon shot forth lines and streamers which enlarging to a band 30° in width at the zenith terminated at W.N.W. horizon in a spiral curtain. Pulsations from E.S.E. to W.N.W. Suddenly the whole brightened and formed a curtain-arch 70° in altitude above northern horizon, with trembling pink fringe, and the pulsations of light were seemingly returned from W.N.W. to E.S.E. At midnight spiral masses of green light were in the N.W. at about 45° altitude.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 39°

2 fathoms = 29.2° – Specific gravity = 1.0251 at 40°

51 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0265 at 39°


Moon 7° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a49: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_011_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a4b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_011_1.jpg)


18 February 1881

No position

17 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 314 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 1728 lbs


Max. temperature = -17°

Min. temperature = -24°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 50 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant with an absolutely cloudless sky. Light southerly and easterly airs, slightly rising barometer and falling temperature.

Sunrise 8h 39m, sunset 3h 15m. Low red dawn at 6am.

At noon the horizon in all directions was raised by mirage, giving the hummocky ice the appearance of white cliffs on a coast.

At midnight auroral streaks from N.W. to S.E. through zenith.


Moon 12° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a4d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_012_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a4f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_012_1.jpg)


19 February 1881

No position

18 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 314 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 1438 lbs


Max. temperature = -21°

Min. temperature = -25°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 51 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant with an absolutely cloudless sky the greater part of the day. Light southerly airs, slightly falling barometer and uniformly low temperature.

Low red dawn at 6am, sunset 3h 22m.

At 3am slight aurora N.W. toward zenith. At midnight a curtain arch from east to S.W. 10° above southern horizon. At the east end bright rays shot upward from a mass lying on the horizon which gave a glow to the sky above it such as is produced by the lights of a city. The rays were in loose striae, and their northern edges were of a brilliant green color.

A small bear coming near the ship was attacked by the dogs and killed by them. The animal was 5 ft 6 inches in length over all. Height 2 feet 2 inches and weighed only 129 pounds.


Moon 12° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 519 ff):

When Aniguin came back from his cruise this afternoon he astonished us considerably by the news that he had found a "house" big enough for two men to live in about two miles southeast of the ship. I think he was considerably frightened at his find, and looked upon it as something uncanny. By close questioning it was elicited that the house was of canvas, that it had a piece of brass served in it; and then it occurred to us that he had found a piece of tent-awning we had left behind in the smash up November 25, 1879. The "piece of brass served in it" meant a brass eyelet, one of a number along the edge for lacing. Though many times since we have hunted for our old resting place, it has remained hidden. Chipp will go out to-morrow with a sled and bring in the valuable relic.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a51: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_013_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a53: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_013_1.jpg)


20 February 1881

Lat 75.02, Long 171.52

19 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Aldebaran 6.30pm N. 75° 1'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 6.30pm E. 171° 31'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 1148 lbs


Max. temperature = -20.5°

Min. temperature = -27°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 46 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light westerly airs veering at first, and then backing steadily to east with slowly falling barometer and uniformly low temperature. At 9pm a small opening in the ice to the W'd produced some mist in the atmosphere.

Sunrise 8h 34m. Sunset 3h 36m.

At 3am faint auroral arch from E. to W. 20° above southern horizon with faint streaks and patches to N'd. At midnight brilliant waving and undulating arch from west to east through zenith with pulsations of bright light in same direction. At 45° above the E. horizon the arch shot out a branch which doubled back toward the main column.


Moon 20° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 520):

Our anticipations of yesterday with respect to the house which Aniguin found have been verified. Chipp went out this morning and brought the trophy into the ship. He found it about three miles southeast of the ship, and in a location which gave evidence of about six feet of the surrounding ice having melted last summer. Nothing was found of two barrels, which, being empty, were not looked after when we broke away.



50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a55: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_014_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a57: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_014_1.jpg)


21 February 1881

No position

20 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 858 lbs


Max. temperature = -15°

Min. temperature = -23°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 42 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No drift indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer, and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally cloudy but pleasant otherwise. Light easterly airs veering to W'd, with falling barometer and variable temperature.

Sunrise 8h 22m, sunset not visible on account of cloudiness.

At 3am bright curtain arch from E. to W. through zenith. At 9pm an arch from N.W. to S.E. 75° above northern horizon, broken into small sections by stratus and nimbus clouds into it. Curtain patches visible between N. horizon and 50° in altitude. The arch slowly faded leaving a general mass of light alternating apparently with clouds in covering the whole sky.

At 10pm the sky was covered by nimbus clouds except in a space between N.W. and north when there was a bright spot extending from the horizon to an altitude of 10° at its highest part and somewhat of this shape
Log Fragment 1
The clouds terminating in a sharply defined horizontal line. From and two degrees below this line, auroral light of a bright green color lay in a band with a fine streak at each extremity making the curved lines of the cloud form as indicated above. Suddenly the band changed into a beautiful vertically-striated curtain with pink fringe which swayed and trembled with rapid flashes, and brightened and paled as pulsations crossed from right to left. There seem to be some great electric disturbance going on behind the clouds, of which disturbance but one edge could be seen; far, soon after fainter lights could be seen through the clouds to the S.E., and the clouds overhead opened somewhat showing a general background of green light. The fringed curtain had by this time subsided into a quiet mass of green light.


Moon 22° S.

Full moon


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a59: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_015_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a5b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_015_1.jpg)


22 February 1881

No position

21 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 568 lbs


Max. temperature = -15°

Min. temperature = -35°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 45 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather generally bright, clear and pleasant. Light westerly airs, rising barometer and low temperature.

Sunrise 8h 20m, sunset 3h 40m.

At 3am faint appearance of aurora at various points, at cloud edges. At 9pm auroral streaks from N.W. to north, and at midnight an arch extended from N.W. to S.E. at an altitude of 45° above southern horizon, with streaks and patches generally from zenith to northern horizon.


Moon 23° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a5d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_016_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a5f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_016_1.jpg)


23 February 1881

No position

22 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 30 tons 278 lbs


Max. temperature = -34°

Min. temperature = -40.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 45 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Dressed ship from sunrise to sunset with United States ensigns at the mast heads and flag staff, and the Union Jack forward, in honor of the anniversary of the birthday of George Washington.

Sunrise 8h 15m, Sunset 3h 49m.

Weather generally clear and pleasant, with an absolutely cloudless sky after 3pm. Light southerly and S.W. airs with rising barometer and falling temperature.

At 3am streaks and patches of auroral light in all parts of the heavens, except N.N.E. At midnight a bright green curtain arch from N.W. to E.S.E. 45°, above northern horizon with fringes here and there. The N.W. end terminated in a spiral. Patches of pale green light between zenith and N. horizon bounded by the extremities of the arch.


Moon 23° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a61: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_017_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a63: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_017_1.jpg)


24 February 1881

No position

23 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 29 tons 2228 lbs


Max. temperature = -30.5°

Min. temperature = -42.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 47 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant, but very cold. Light airs and calms until noon, after which a light breeze springs up from E.N.E. with slowly falling barometer.

Sunrise cloudy, sunset 3h 50m. Low red dawn at 6am.

At 9pm a double auroral arch extended from N.W. to E. 45° above northern horizon. At midnight, curving and spiral curtain segments formed an irregular arch 45° in alt. from N.W. to E., with loops and patches and sprays, above and below the arch, from zenith to N. horizon.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 38.5°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 40°

46 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0276 at 40°


Moon 22° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a65: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_018_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a67: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_018_1.jpg)


25 February 1881

No position

24 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 29 tons 1793 lbs


Max. temperature = -1°

Min. temperature = -30.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 41 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Moderate E.N.E. gale all day, blowing at midnight with hard squalls, having also veered to east. Clouds of surface snow were swept over and on board the ship, rendering invisible objects at a short distance. At 9pm snow fell in large flakes. Falling barometer and rapidly increasing temperature.

At 3am auroral arch extending through zenith from N.W. to east.


Moon 18° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a69: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_019_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a6b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_019_1.jpg)


26 February 1881

No position

25 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 29 tons 1433 lbs


Max. temperature = -1°

Min. temperature = -14.2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 41 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh east gale all day with rising barometer and falling temperature. Sky partially cloudy, but such masses of surface drift were swept into the air as to prevent exact observation.

At 3am faint aurora from altitude 10° bearing E. to altitude 10° bearing west, 30° above southern horizon. At 9pm segments of auroral curtains and arches from E. to W. between zenith and north horizon.


Moon 14° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a6d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_020_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a6f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_020_1.jpg)


27 February 1881

Lat 75.18, Long 170.58

26 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Aldebaran 6pm N. 75° 11'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 6pm E. 170° 35'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 29 tons 1073 lbs


Max. temperature = -12.2°

Min. temperature = -32.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 41 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Easterly gale continues until noon, and then it rapidly moderates while the wind backs. Rapidly rising barometer and falling temperature, sky quickly clearing.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 4h 11m.

From 9pm to midnight auroral arches (generally from E. to W. 40° and 45° in alt N. & S.) and bands of auroral lights (parallel to the horizon) covered nearly the whole sky.


Moon 9° S.

Last quarter


50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a71: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_021_0.jpg)

50a27fdf7438ae05bd000a73: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_021_1.jpg)


28 February 1881

No position

27 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 395 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 29 tons 678 lbs


Max. temperature = -30°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 41 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather clear and bright, with an absolutely cloudless sky the greater part of the time. Light N.E. breeze backing to W.N.W. and freshening. Slightly falling barometer and low temperature.

Sunrise 7h 35m, sunset 4h 22m.

At 3am diffused patches of auroral light around horizon. At 9pm three arches from N.W. to E. through zenith, and one from N.W. to E. 20° above southern horizon. At midnight a thin wire-drawn arch from N.W. to E. through zenith with patches in layers generally parallel to southern horizon from one end of the arch to the other.


Moon 3° S.

New moon



LOGS FOR MARCH 1881


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a75: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_022_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a77: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_022_1.jpg)


1 March 1881

No position

28 February 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 29 tons 318 lbs


Max. temperature = -24.5°

Min. temperature = -34°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh north-westerly breezes, with variable barometer and thermometer. Light snow in the early morning and at midnight, and considerable fog after 8pm due probably to an ice opening in our vicinity.

At 1, 8 and 9pm the ship was heavily jarred and much snapping and cracking occurred in the ice surrounding her.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 4h 25m.

By direct measurement the ice surrounding the ship was found to be 6 feet in thickness, the result of direct freezing since August 31st 1880.


Provisions condemned during month

9 lbs roast mutton – spoiled

20 lbs beef soup – spoiled

1 ½ lbs chicken – spoiled


Moon 2° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 523):

We had some little disturbance to-day in the jarring of the ship at one, eight, and nine p.m., and the frequent snapping and cracking of the ice. After so much E. and S.E. wind, I suppose some slack place has been made in those directions; and as we have to-day fresh N.W. winds, a closing up has occurred, which would explain the disturbance. Some snow and fog indicated openings in the ice in our neighborhood, and the barometer and temperature readings were in accordance with such changes going on.

By measurement the ice around us was found to be six feet thick, direct growth since August 31st.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000a79: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_023_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a7b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_023_1.jpg)


2 March 1881

No position

1 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 2233 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -24.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull, gloomy and unpleasant. Fresh N.W. gale, falling and drifting snow. Slightly falling followed by slightly rising barometer. Slowly increasing temperature. After 9pm the sky partially cleared, showing faint auroral arches from N.W. to east through zenith.

The usual monthly physical examination of officers and men was commenced to day by the surgeon.


Moon 8° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a7d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_024_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a7f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_024_1.jpg)


3 March 1881

No position

2 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 1873 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -20°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Moderate N.N.W. gale, decreasing to strong breeze after 3pm, rising barometer and but slightly varying temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 4h 30m.

The usual monthly physical examination of officers and men was continued and completed to day by the surgeon.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0235 at 45°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 41°

34 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0260 at 40°


Moon 13° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a81: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_025_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a83: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_025_1.jpg)


4 March 1881

No position

3 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 470 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 1403 lbs


Max. temperature = -18°

Min. temperature = -35°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light N.N.W. breezes, rising barometer and decreasing temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 4h 48m.

At 3am streaks and patches auroral light visible through thin and broken clouds. A circle of pale green light, 20° in diameter, moved slowly from near zenith to 10° above S.E. horizon.

At midnight a curtain arch from E.S.E. to west 45° above southern horizon composed of the most brilliant striae: flashing, trembling, dancing up and down, breaking into segments, appearing for a moment as two arches advancing toward zenith and then receding, turning into spirals, and generally in a state of violent agitation. The prevailing colors seemed to be a pale green, and the fringe a bright pink. The pulsations of light and movement from the E.S.E. In 15 minutes it quieted down leaving the sky nearly covered by bands and patches without movement.


Moon 17° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a85: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_026_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a87: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_026_1.jpg)


5 March 1881

No position

4 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 340 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 1078 lbs


Max. temperature = -29.5°

Min. temperature = -39.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant, though cold. Light northerly airs and steady barometer.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 4h 49m.

At 9pm a bright auroral arch W.N.W. to east 30° above northern horizon. At midnight two bright arches 45° above southern horizon, extending from E.N.E. to west, turned into a flashing curtain with pink fringe, which rose and advanced to zenith. It then spread out in an elongated corona, (elongation E.N.E. and west) resembling a flattened open umbrella of many hundred ribs, all in a state of great agitation. Flashes of pink and green light jumped up and down the so-called ribs, while a mass within and close to the vortex was violently agitated, the flashes of light whirling around its circumference, sometimes right-handed, sometimes left-handed.


Moon 20° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a89: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_027_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a8b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_027_1.jpg)


6 March 1881

Lat 74.87, Long 170.83

5 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Pollux 9pm N. 74° 52'

Longitude by chronometer from observation ✱ Arcturus 9pm E. 170° 50'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 718 lbs


Max. temperature = -35.5°

Min. temperature = -42.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant with light airs and slightly falling barometer.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 4h 58m.

At 3am faint appearance of aurora to the N'd; and at midnight a pale arch from E.S.E. to N.W. through zenith.


Moon 22° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a8d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_028_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a8f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_028_1.jpg)


7 March 1881

No position

6 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 393 lbs


Max. temperature = -35°

Min. temperature = -43°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Light westerly airs backing toward midnight, slightly rising barometer and uniformly very low temperature.

At 11am called all hands to muster; read the act for the government of the Navy, and mustered the crew. The Commanding Officer then inspected the ship. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 5h 4m.

About 8am a bear coming up astern was attacked by the dogs and, after a severe fight with them, was killed by William Nindemann and Henry Wilson (seaman). Many of the dogs were cut and torn, two of them badly so. And the bullet fired by Nindemann after passing through the bear, and flattening and glancing in so doing, penetrated the lungs of another dog, causing death.

The weight of the dead bear was 374 lbs.

At 3am faint streaks aurora N.N.W. around by E. to S.W. 5° to 20° in altitude; and at midnight streaks and bands of auroral light parallel to the horizon and 20° in alt. A mass of auroral light moved at same time slowly from N.E. to S.W. merging into the banks upon reaching them.


Moon 23° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a91: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_029_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a93: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_029_1.jpg)


8 March 1881

No position

7 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 28 tons 68 lbs


Max. temperature = -34.5°

Min. temperature = -42°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light S.W. breezes gradually freshening with falling barometer and low temperature.

Sunrise 7h 10m. Sunset 5h 3m.

At 2 and 4pm the ship was heavily jarred, and the snapping and grinding of ice were heard as from close alongside. Nothing however could be seen on the surface.

At 9pm two arches north and one arch south of zenith, each 20° in altitude, and extending from east to west.


Moon 23° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 525):

Something is getting ready for a move, for three times to-day, seven a.m., two and four p.m., the ship was heavily jarred, and the grinding and snapping of the ice occurred alongside of us, though nothing could be seen.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000a95: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_030_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a97: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_030_1.jpg)


9 March 1881

No position

8 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 27 tons 1948 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -36°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 36 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh S.W. gale veering to S.W. toward midnight. Rapidly falling barometer and as rapidly increasing temperature. The air was filled with clouds of drifting snow from the floe surface and large quantities even blown on board ship.


Moon 22° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a99: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_031_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a9b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_031_1.jpg)


10 March 1881

No position

9 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 395 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 27 tons 1553 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -41.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to E.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy during the forenoon, clear, bright and pleasant during the afternoon. Strong west wind moderating rapidly and, by 6pm, backing to S.W. and growing light. Steadily rising barometer and rapidly falling temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 5h 13m.

At midnight a single spray of auroral light from east point of the horizon extending 45° toward zenith.


Moon 20° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000a9d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_032_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000a9f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_032_1.jpg)


11 March 1881

No position

10 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 470 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 27 tons 1083 lbs


Max. temperature = -17°

Min. temperature = -43°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear and pleasant until noon; but the sky rapidly clouds up after noon, with much haze, then light snow and a large amount of fog. Light S.S.W. breezes back to S.E. and freshen considerably for a while. Slightly falling barometer and steadily increasing temperature.

Sunrise 6h 25m. Sunset cloudy.

At 3pm a considerable pressure was exerted on the ice immediately surrounding the ship. A long break, running N. and S. and 500 yards E. of the ship, occurred in the ice, and the broken floe edges were piled up by the advancing and lapping floes from further beyond.


Moon 17° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 525):

A light S.W. breeze and steadily increasing temperature. Just as the wind changed, at three p.m., the ice commenced to jar the ship. The sound of our going over some underlying pieces was apparent, and considerable strain seemed to be received. Five hundred yards east of the ship a long crack occurred running north and south, and the ice beyond immediately commenced crowding in, breaking up edges and piling a ridge all along its length. This advance looked something like our old experience of November, 1879.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000aa1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_033_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aa3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_033_1.jpg)


12 March 1881

No position

11 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 27 tons 758 lbs


Max. temperature = -17°

Min. temperature = -39.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light S.S.E. breeze veering to N.N.W. by noon, and then backing to W.N.W. by midnight. Rapidly rising barometer and as rapidly decreasing temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 5h 23m.

At 9pm twilight in horizon to N.W. (true). At midnight brilliant flashes of dancing curtain segments from W.S.W. horizon to zenith. At same time sharp whistlings and snappings from the ice.


Moon 13° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 525 ff):

At midnight brilliant flashing of an auroral mass of curtain segments west between horizon and zenith. At the same time I remarked what I have frequently heard before, noises from the ice all around me like the singing which a whiplash makes in cutting through the air, or a noise produced by switching a rattan.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000aa5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_034_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aa7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_034_1.jpg)


13 March 1881

Lat 74.90, Long 171.27

12 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation meridian altitude ✱ Procyon N. 74° 54'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus E. 171° 16'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 470 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 27 tons 288 lbs


Max. temperature = -35.5°

Min. temperature = -43°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant, though a fog hangs around the horizon from 9am to 6pm. Light westerly airs backing to light E.S.E. breeze with slightly rising barometer and uniformly low temperature.

Sunrise 6h 18m. Sunset 5h 25m. At 9pm twilight in W.N.W. At 3am low dawn N.N.E.

Between 6 and 8am the ice was moving at the old crack 500 yards E.S.E. from the ship. Between noon and 1pm much noise was occasioned by the grinding and moving of the ice ahead of the ship.

At 3am faint streaks of aurora from E.N.E. to N.N.W. between 5° and 20° in altitude. Faint arch from E.S.E. to S.W. altitude of center 7°. At 9pm single spray of auroral light from W. horizon toward zenith. At midnight in a space 45° N. to 45° south of the zenith in lines parallel to the horizon as well as in arches through zenith, ran ribbons and curtain patches of green and yellow light with pink fringe, the whole in a state of violent agitation. At times the ribbons and curtain patches separated into clearly defined striae which seemed to descend to our masthead and then be quickly drawn back again.


Moon 13° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 526):

The ice five hundred yards south-east of the ship got under way between six and eight a.m. and made quite a disturbance, and between noon and one p.m. the screaming and grinding commenced ahead. This motion of the ice, after our long quiet of over a year, is incomprehensible, unless by some happy chance we are as close to the northern edge now as we were to the southern edge then of a great icy barrier.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000aa9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_035_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aab: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_035_1.jpg)


14 March 1881

No position

13 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 2168 lbs


Max. temperature = -18.5°

Min. temperature = -39.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy, with overcast sky. Occasional fine snow. Fresh S.E. breeze with slightly falling barometer and rapidly rising temperature.

Sunrise 6h 7m. Sunset cloudy.

At 9am sound of ice grinding S.W. of ship.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.


Moon 5° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 526):

As an evidence of our vagaries in the Arctic we have taken to flying kites, Chipp of a scientific kind for electrical effects, and the Chinamen of a fancy kind for their own amusement, and in their enjoyment of the fun they amuse the whole ship's company.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000aad: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_036_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aaf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_036_1.jpg)


15 March 1881

Lat 75.08, Long 171.63

14 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 5'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 8pm E. 171° 38'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 1843 lbs


Max. temperature = -19°

Min. temperature = -43°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 50 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Fresh southerly breezes veering to light westerly airs, with rapidly rising barometer and quickly falling temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 5h 47m.

Crew engaged forenoon and afternoon in digging away snow from the rail amidships on the port side.


Moon 1° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ab1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_037_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ab3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_037_1.jpg)


16 March 1881

No position

15 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 1483 lbs


Max. temperature = -36.5°

Min. temperature = -45°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 46 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant though very cold. After 6am the sky was absolutely cloudless. Light westerly airs backing E.S.E. breeze with slightly falling barometer.

Sunrise 6h 7m. Sunset 5h 55m.

By computation of the work done by the pumps, from noon of yesterday to noon of today it is found that the leak amounts to 4795 ½ gallons per day, or about 200 gallons per hour.

At midnight thin streak of aurora from W.N.W. to E.S.E. through zenith.


Moon 5° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ab5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_038_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ab7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_038_1.jpg)


17 March 1881

Lat 75.12, Long 171.80

16 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 7'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 8pm E. 171° 48'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 1123 lbs


Max. temperature = -26.5°

Min. temperature = -43°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead, into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded at 10am in 60 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright, clear and pleasant during the forenoon, cloudy with increasing cloudiness in the afternoon. Moderate S.E. breeze, falling barometer and rising temperature.

Crew engaged in removing snow from alongside amidships.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 28.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0228 at 44°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 46°

58 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0270 at 47°


Moon 10° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ab9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_039_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000abb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_039_1.jpg)


18 March 1881

No position

17 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 470 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 653 lbs


Max. temperature = -21.5°

Min. temperature = -36°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 67 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy during the forenoon, clear and bright during the afternoon. Moderate S.S.E. breezes veering and backing throughout the day and resting at east with light airs at midnight. Steady barometer and falling temperature.

Fine snow at 9am.

Sunrise 5h 57m. Sunset 6h 12m. Dawn light high on northern horizon at midnight.

At 9pm segment of auroral arch from E.N.E. horizon toward zenith. At midnight bright green spiral arch from E.S.E. to W.N.W. 60° above southern horizon.


Moon 15° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000abd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_040_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000abf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_040_1.jpg)


19 March 1881

No position

18 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 320 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 328 lbs


Max. temperature = -19.5°

Min. temperature = -38°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 66 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Moderate E.S.E. breeze, slightly falling barometer and increasing followed by decreasing temperature.

Sunrise 5h 38m. Sunset 6h 10m.

Adolph Dressler (seaman) while carrying provisions forward to the berth deck, attempted to open door of deck house with one hand, and, in so doing, dislocated the os magnum of the right wrist joint.

At 3am auroral arch from E.S.E. to W.S.W. 10° above southern horizon. Streaks and patches to N'd & E'd between 5° and 7° in altitude. At midnight pale corona formed of rays separating widely at their lower extremities. The rays in an east and west direction reached to the horizon while those in a north and south direction extended only half way, the whole making an elliptic canopy or dome whose major axis was at right angles to the magnetic meridian.


Moon 18° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ac1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_041_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ac3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_041_1.jpg)


20 March 1881

Lat 75.25, Long 171.61

19 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 15'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 8pm E. 171° 36' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 26 tons 3 lbs


Max. temperature = -20°

Min. temperature = -29°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 71 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Considerable cloudiness but generally pleasant weather. Moderate S.E. and E.S.E. breezes, with slightly rising barometer and nearly uniform temperature.

Sunrise 5h 39m. Sunset cloudy.

At 3am auroral patches in N.W.


Moon 21° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ac5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_042_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ac7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_042_1.jpg)


21 March 1881

Lat 75.28

20 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 17'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 25 tons 1918 lbs


Max. temperature = -16°

Min. temperature = -29.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 73 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.W. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Considerable cloudiness but generally pleasant weather. Light E. and S.E. breezes, rising barometer, and a higher temperature in the middle of the day.

At 11am the Commanding Officer inspected the ship; and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Moon 23° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ac9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_043_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000acb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_043_1.jpg)


22 March 1881

No position

21 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 25 tons 1558 lbs


Max. temperature = -23.5°

Min. temperature = -37°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 68 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light easterly airs veering to south with slightly rising barometer and low temperature.

Sunrise 5h 35m. Sunset 6h 25m.

At midnight a single column of auroral light from E. horizon curving to the northward at an altitude of 45° and spreading out into a broad patch.

A crack was found in the ice under the bows and under the stern, running in the direction of the keel, and the ice and snow walls alongside were found removed several inches from the ships side. From the doubling downward, however, the ice seems to cling closely to the ship.


Moon 23° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 529 ff):

This morning we found a track ahead of the stem, and one leading astern, as if our floe were split in a line with the keel. At the same time we noticed that our snow walls were an inch or two away from the sides, as if an opening and spreading outward were about to occur. We can but await developments, as we did in the fall of 1879, for I have long since ceased to build any castles in the air on probabilities or possibilities.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000acd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_044_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000acf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_044_1.jpg)


23 March 1881

No position

22 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 25 tons 1198 lbs


Max. temperature = -26°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 68 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and very pleasant. Light S.E. airs backing to N.E. with rising barometer. Low temperature except during the middle of the day.

Sunrise 5h 15m. Sunset 6h 39m.

At midnight bright curtain arch from E. through to zenith to W.N.W. with pencils of light to the northward of the arch, and a hand to the southward 45° in altitude.


Moon 22° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ad1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_045_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ad3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_045_1.jpg)


24 March 1881


No position

23 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 25 tons 873 lbs


Max. temperature = -27.5°

Min. temperature = -39°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 68 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and very pleasant. Light E.N.E. breeze, slowly falling barometer, and low temperature except in the middle of the day.

Sunrise 5h 7m. Sunset 6h 45m.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 28.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 43°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 44°

66 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0274 at 43°


Moon 19° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ad5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_046_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ad7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_046_1.jpg)


25 March 1881

No position

24 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 25 tons 438 lbs


Max. temperature = -26°

Min. temperature = -33°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 64 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. E.N.E. breeze, slightly falling barometer and a slightly warmer temperature than yesterday.

Sunrise at 5h 12m. Sunset 6h 50m.

At midnight a thin ribbon of auroral light made an arch from east, through zenith to W.N.W.


Moon 15° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ad9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_047_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000adb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_047_1.jpg)


26 March 1881

No position

25 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 25 tons 78 lbs


Max. temperature = -18.5°

Min. temperature = -31.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 64 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light easterly airs and breezes, rising barometer at end of the day, and generally low temperature. Fine snow fell at 9am.

Sunrise 5h 8m. Sunset cloudy.

At midnight a narrow arch of auroral light from E. to W. through zenith.


Moon 11° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000add: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_048_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000adf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_048_1.jpg)


27 March 1881

Lat 75.40

26 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 24'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 24 tons 1993 lbs


Max. temperature = 1°

Min. temperature = -35°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 61 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy, with almost constant fog and fall of fine snow. Light N.N.E. breezes veering and freshening with falling barometer and a remarkable rise in temperature.

Sunrise and sunset obscured.

The lead 1/8 of a mile astern was found open here and there, and 2 miles beyond that to the N'd a large opening existed some 60 yards in width and extending for a mile or so in an E. and W. direction.


Moon 5° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ae1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_049_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ae3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_049_1.jpg)


28 March 1881

No position

27 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 330 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 24 tons 1633 lbs


Max. temperature = 6°

Min. temperature = -26.5°


The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 62 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy until 3pm with some fog and a steady fall of thin snow. After 3pm the weather became clear, bright and pleasant. S.E. breezes veer to S.W. and grow lighter. Barometer at first falls slowly and then rises rapidly. In the same manner, the temperature at first slowly increases and then rapidly decreases. Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 7h 14m.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

At 9pm a single spray of auroral light shot up toward zenith from eastern horizon, and at midnight there was a faint irregular curve of light from eastern horizon through zenith toward N.W.


Moon 0° 18' N.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ae5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_050_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ae7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_050_1.jpg)


29 March 1881

Lat 75.45, Long 170.43

28 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 350 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 27'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 8pm E. 170° 26'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 24 tons 1273 lbs


Max. temperature = -13.5°

Min. temperature = -30°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 64 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to east being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Light S.W. airs backing to N.E. with rising barometer, and low temperature except for a short time in the middle of the day.

Sunrise 4h 40m. Sunset 7h 15m.

At 6am a very dark mist rose from the ice between N.W. (around by N.) and E.S.E. At noon a large opening could be seen between those points, and other openings occurred to south and S.W. The ice was grinding and moving at noon and midnight. Some of the openings were 150 feet in width.


Moon 6° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 532 ff):

We have been quite excited to-day about ice openings. At six a.m. masses of dark vapor were rising in clouds from north northwest. Around by north to southeast and from aloft a very large opening could be seen. Toward four p.m. another opening occurred in the southwest, and the old lead one eighth of a mile astern (north) opened also. All the hunters were out, of course, and made for the water. But three seals were seen, too far to shoot at, and no bear-tracks. By using a glass from aloft, ice could be seen across this large opening to the northward. So we were not on the edge of an open sea, as we might have hoped. Generally speaking, however, the ice is full of small cracks, and it seems as if a good southwest blow would send it streaming away to the northeast without any difficulty, and getting these fields into deep water break them up, and so allow us a chance to get our poor ice-ridden ship under way.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000ae9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_051_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aeb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_051_1.jpg)


30 March 1881

No position

29 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 350 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 24 tons 913 lbs


Max. temperature = -3°

Min. temperature = -32°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 60 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift westward being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally cloudy and dull. Light N.E. airs freshening and veering to E.S.E. with falling barometer and rising temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset cloudy.

All the openings in the ice noticed in yesterday's log, are to day found closed. The ice seems jammed together solidly in all directions.


Moon 11° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 533):

As if by magic every ice opening of yesterday is closed to-day, and not a drop of water is to be seen. A light N.E. breeze veers to E.N.E. and to S.E., and the ice is all solid again. To the southwest of us it came together with some force, for a ridge of broken lumps marks the line of closing.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000aed: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_052_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aef: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_052_1.jpg)


31 March 1881

No position

30 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 350 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 24 tons 588 lbs


Max. temperature = -10°

Min. temperature = -25.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 63 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light easterly breezes, steady barometer and falling temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 7h 30m.

At 6 and 9am a heavy water sky between west and north, at the last named hour even extending to the S.W.

At midnight faint auroral streaks and patches between zenith and southern horizon.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 28.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 48°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 49°

61 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0272 at 48°


Moon 15° N.

New moon



LOGS FOR APRIL 1881


50a27fe07438ae05bd000af1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_053_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000af3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_053_1.jpg)


1 April 1881

Lat 75.58, Long 169.80

31 March 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 35'

Longitude by chronometer from observation Planet Venus 8pm E. 169° 48'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 470 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 24 tons 118 lbs


Max. temperature = -16.5°

Min. temperature = -30.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 61 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light easterly and north-easterly airs veering to S.S.E. by midnight with rising barometer and variable temperature. Much fog at midnight between N.W. and N.E.

Sunrise 4h 15m. Sunset 7h 38m.

By actual measurement the ice surrounding the ship was found to be 6 feet 9 inches in thickness being the result of direct freezing since August 31st, 1880.

By computation of the work done by both bilge pumps, the leak is found to amount to 4231 gallons per day, or about 176 gallons per hour.


Moon 19° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000af5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_054_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000af7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_054_1.jpg)


2 April 1881

No position

1 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 23 tons 2033 lbs


Max. temperature = -14°

Min. temperature = -27.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 61 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear and pleasant after 9pm. Previous to that time considerable fog prevails. Light southerly airs veering to west, with steady barometer, and, except during the middle of the day, low temperature.

Sunrise 4h 15m. Sunset 7h 39m.

The usual monthly examination of officers and men by the surgeon is commenced and continued to day.

The spring and summer routine of duties and exercises goes into effect.


Moon 21° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000af9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_055_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000afb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_055_1.jpg)


3 April 1881

No position

2 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 23 tons 1708 lbs


Max. temperature = -11°

Min. temperature = -30°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 63 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Considerable fog prevailed all day. At times when the horizon was visible much water-sky was in sight from N.W. around by north to E.S.E. Light S.W. airs freshening to light breeze, with slightly falling barometer and our usual changes of temperature.

Sunrise hidden. Sunset 7h 48m.

The surgeon continued and completed the monthly physical examination.


Moon 23° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000afd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_056_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000aff: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_056_1.jpg)


4 April 1881

Lat 75.58, Long 169.65

3 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 35'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 39'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 23 tons 1383 lbs


Max. temperature = -11.2°

Min. temperature = -20°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 60 ½ fathoms. Sticky green mud. No perceptible drift.

At 11am called all hands to muster. Read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The ship was then inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light airs and breezes backing from west to S.S.E. with rising barometer, and a temperature falling toward midnight.

Sunrise hidden. Sunset 8h.


Moon 23° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b01: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_057_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b03: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_057_1.jpg)


5 April 1881

No position

4 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 23 tons 1023 lbs


Max. temperature = -12°

Min. temperature = -20°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 62 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift north being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light S.E. and S.S.E. breezes, rising barometer and pleasant temperature.

Sunrise 3h 54m. Sunset 8h 2m.

Crew engaged in breaking out the forward store room preparatory to scraping away the ice.


Moon 22° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b05: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_058_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b07: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_058_1.jpg)


6 April 1881

Lat 75.63, Long 169.77

5 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 38'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 46'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 23 tons 698 lbs


Max. temperature = -4°

Min. temperature = -22.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 65 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather sometimes clear, bright and pleasant, at other times much fog prevailed. A heavy water sky between west around by north to S.E., indicating ice openings in those directions though at a considerable distance. A lane of water between N.N.W. and N.N.E. was found 2 1/8 miles from the ship.

Light south and S.W. breezes rapidly rising barometer and marked increase of temperature.

Sunrise 3h 50m. Sunset obscured by fog.

A seal was killed and brought in and two guillemots (?) were seen and fired at. One was seen yesterday also being the first bird seen this year.

Crew engaged in breaking out, cleaning, and restowing forward store room.


Moon 21° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b09: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_059_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b0b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_059_1.jpg)


7 April 1881

No position

6 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 23 tons 373 lbs


Max. temperature = -4°

Min. temperature = -18°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 68 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather generally cloudy or foggy. Light S.W. breeze backs to E.S.E. and freshens while backing, with falling barometer and decreasing temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 8h 13m.

At 6am heavy black water sky in all directions, heaviest however to the northward.

Crew engaged in restowing forward store room.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 46.5°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 47°

66 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0276 at 47°


Moon 18° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b0d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_060_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b0f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_060_1.jpg)


8 April 1881

No position

7 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 2178 lbs


Max. temperature = 6°

Min. temperature = -16°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 72 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift north being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy with an overcast sky. Fresh breezes from E. to S.E. moderating rapidly after 6pm. Falling barometer and rapidly increasing temperature. Fine snow fell after 3pm to midnight.

Sunrise 3h 49m. Sunset cloudy.

Crew engaged in scraping ice out of the deck house.


Moon 14° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b11: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_061_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b13: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_061_1.jpg)


9 April 1881

Lat 75.77, Long 169.95

8 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 46'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 57'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 1853 lbs


Max. temperature = 6°

Min. temperature = -10°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 75 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant until after 6pm when extensive ice openings caused considerable fog. Light W.N.W. airs backing to south and blowing fresh breeze at midnight in squalls. Generally steady barometer and variable temperature.

Sunrise and sunset both obscured by clouds or fog.

Crew engaged in clearing out frost deposits from deck house.

At 6pm the ice opened about two miles to the W'd -, and by 9 the opening extended in an irregular curve from west around by north to N.E. averaging two miles in distance from the ship and varying in width from two feet to fifty yards.

At midnight the ship received several severe shocks as if passing over and striking blocks of ice. As all ice openings had closed to the N'd and a small opening had occurred to the southward, the shocks may have been caused by the coming together of floes.


Moon 10° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 534):

At six p.m. the ice commenced to open about two miles west of the ship, and by nine p.m. the opening had extended in an irregular curve around by north to north-east, and the condensation caused a thick fog. The water could be plainly seen from the deck-house about two miles distant, the width of the opening varying from a few feet to one hundred and fifty yards. At midnight, however, the opening had closed and a small one had occurred to the southward. The ship received several severe shocks at midnight, presumably caused by the floes coming together.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b15: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_062_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b17: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_062_1.jpg)


10 April 1881

No position

9 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 1563 lbs


Max. temperature = 8°

Min. temperature = -12.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 77 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift east being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh westerly gale, moderating rapidly after 6pm. Barometer rises rapidly to an unusual height, and the temperature, which at first increases, rapidly decreases.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 8h 37m.

Crew engaged in clearing up generally about the ship.


Moon 6° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b19: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_063_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b1b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_063_1.jpg)


11 April 1881

Lat 75.73, Long 170.32

10 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 365 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 44'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 170° 19'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 1273 lbs


Max. temperature = -2°

Min. temperature = -14°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 77 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Fresh southerly winds, unusually high barometer and pleasant temperature.

Sunrise 3h 13m. Sunset 8h 45m.


Moon 1° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b1d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_064_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b1f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_064_1.jpg)


12 April 1881

Lat 75.83, Long 170.55

11 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 360 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 47'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 170° 33'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 983 lbs


Max. temperature = 4°

Min. temperature = -14.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 84 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy at times and occasionally clear, bright and pleasant. Fresh S.S.E. and south winds, rapidly falling barometer and comfortable temperatures.

Sunrise 3h 0m. Sunset 8h 50m.


Moon 4° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b21: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_065_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b23: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_065_1.jpg)


13 April 1881

Lat 75.80, Long 170.62

12 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 360 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 48'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 170° 37'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 693 lbs


Max. temperature = 2.5°

Min. temperature = -10.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 85 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift north being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Moderate southerly breezes veering to light N.N.W. airs with slightly falling barometer and pleasant temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 9h 5m.


Moon 9° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b25: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_066_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b27: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_066_1.jpg)


14 April 1881

No position

13 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 360 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 333 lbs


Max. temperature = -4°

Min. temperature = -13°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 85 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift south being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with considerable fog. Light airs, generally from north with slightly rising barometer and comfortable temperature.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset cloudy.

At midnight very heavy water sky between S.E. and S.W.


Moon 13° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b29: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_067_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b2b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_067_1.jpg)


15 April 1881

No position

14 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 360 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 22 tons 43 lbs


Max. temperature = 6°

Min. temperature = -13°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 82 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy until after 3pm when the sky cleared. Light northerly airs freshening to moderate E.N.E. breeze with rising barometer, and at first rapidly rising but finally rapid falling temperature. Fine snow falling until 9am.

Sunrise cloudy. Sunset 9h 20m.

An opening occurred in the ice about 500 yards ahead of the ship and extended in an irregular curve around her bows for several miles.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0230 at 47°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0248 at 47°

80 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0274 at 47.5°


Moon 17° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 535):

An opening occurred in the ice about five hundred yards ahead of the ship, and extended in an irregular curve around her bows for several miles.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b2d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_068_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b2f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_068_1.jpg)


16 April 1881

Lat 75.87, Long 169.93

15 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 370 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 52'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 56'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 400 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 21 tons 1883 lbs


Max. temperature = -11°

Min. temperature = -25°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 82 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant, the sky being absolutely cloudless for nearly the whole of the day. Moderate E.N.E. breezes backing to N.E. and growing lighter toward midnight. Generally steady barometer, but an unusually low temperature.

Crew engaged forenoon and afternoon in hunting according to daily practice.

Sunrise 2h 30m. Sunset 9h 37m.

By actual measurement the ice surrounding ship was found to be 7 feet 2 inches in thickness the result of direct freezing since August 31st 1880.


Moon 20° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 535):

By measurement to-day in the most accurate manner, we find the ice to have attained a thickness of eighty-four inches direct freezing since August 31, 1880.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b31: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_069_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b33: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_069_1.jpg)


17 April 1881

Lat 75.89, Long 169.75

16 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 370 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 53' 30"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 45'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 21 tons 1593 lbs


Max. temperature = -15°

Min. temperature = -26°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room, is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 84 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light N.E. airs backing to moderate N.N.W. breezes. Steady barometer and slightly increasing temperature.

Sunrise 2h 15m. Sunset cloudy.


Moon 22° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b35: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_070_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b37: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_070_1.jpg)


18 April 1881

Lat 75.88, Long 169.43

17 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 380 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 53'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 26'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 21 tons 1303 lbs


Max. temperature = -11.5°

Min. temperature = -21.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 84 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Moderate northerly breezes. Steady barometer and a continuance of unusually low temperature.

Sunrise 2h 15m. Sunset 9h 55m.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was read in the cabin.


Moon 23° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b39: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_071_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b3b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_071_1.jpg)


19 April 1881

Lat 75.90, Long 169.06

18 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 385 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 53' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 169° 3' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 21 tons 978 lbs


Max. temperature = -9°

Min. temperature = -23.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft, through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 82 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant until 9pm at and after which time the sky is overcast, and a light snow falls. A heavy water sky at such time indicates openings in the ice at some distance.

Sunrise 2h 4m. Sunset cloudy.

Fresh N.N.E. breezes all day, with steady barometer and rising temperature.


Moon 22° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b3d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_072_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b3f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_072_1.jpg)


20 April 1881

Lat 75.91, Long 168.78

19 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 390 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 54' 30"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 168° 46' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 21 tons 653 lbs


Max. temperature = -4.5°

Min. temperature = -15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 81 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift W. x S. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather bright and pleasant in the middle of the day, dull and gloomy during the remainder. Fresh N.E. breezes veering finally to E. x N. and increasing to strong wind. Steady barometer and increasing temperature.

Sunrise and sunset both obscured.

Two of our dogs having strayed away from the ship to day, were seen in conflict with a bear about 5 miles to the W'd of the ship. But though chase was given by two men they were unable to get within range of the bear or to call back the dogs. The running fight continued as long as the animals could be seen, and the dogs have failed to return.


Moon 20° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b41: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_073_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b43: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_073_1.jpg)


21 April 1881

Lat 75.93, Long 168.33

20 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 390 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 75° 56'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 168° 20'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 21 tons 363 lbs


Max. temperature = 0°

Min. temperature = -7°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 83 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Moderate gale from E. x N. all day driving the surface snow along in low clouds. Weather generally bright and pleasant. Rising barometer and uniformly varying temperature. At 7.05pm the ship received a jar as if she had struck submerged ice.

Sunrise 1h 37m. Sunset 10h 45m.

A party of men with dogs were sent away after noon to look for the strayed and missing dogs of yesterday, but though tracks of a bear and accompanying tracks of the dogs were followed for upwards of 10 miles, the animals themselves could not be found.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0250 at 44°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0252 at 44.5°

81 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0266 at 44.5°


Moon 16° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 538):

At 7.05 p.m. the ship received a jar as if striking in going over a submerged piece of ice.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b45: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_074_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b47: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_074_1.jpg)


22 April 1881

Lat 76.04, Long 167.76

21 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 400 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 2' 34"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 167° 45' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 435 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 2168 lbs


Max. temperature = -0.5°

Min. temperature = -9°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 81 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh easterly gale with slightly falling barometer and increasing temperature. The surface snow is driven in clouds over the ship's rail.

Sunrise 1h 25m. Sunset cloudy.


Moon 12° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b49: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_075_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b4b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_075_1.jpg)


23 April 1881

No position

22 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 400 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 1808 lbs


Max. temperature = 5.5°

Min. temperature = -0.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 60 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift W. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Increasing easterly gale with falling barometer and warmer temperature. Very heavy squalls at times between noon and midnight. Clouds of drift-snow are blown over the ship, and large masses of it are piled up around her.


Moon 6° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b4d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_076_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b4f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_076_1.jpg)


24 April 1881

No position

23 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 400 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 1483 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = 2.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A very rapid drift W. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Strong easterly gale with heavy squalls until after 3pm when the wind rapidly moderated, and the barometer ceased to fall. Snow falling from 9pm to midnight.


Moon 1° S.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b51: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_077_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b53: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_077_1.jpg)


25 April 1881

Lat 76.33

24 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 400 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 20'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 360 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 1123 lbs


Max. temperature = 6.5°

Min. temperature = 4°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift S.W. x S. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with an almost steady fall of fine snow. Fresh N.E. wind with rapidly rising barometer and even temperature.

At 11am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was read in the cabin.


Moon 4° N.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b55: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_078_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b57: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_078_1.jpg)


26 April 1881

Lat 76.32, Long 164.75

25 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 445 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 19'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 164° 45'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 325 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 798 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = -6°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift S. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Pleasant weather with winds varying between north and N.E. with steadily rising barometer. Uniform temperature until 6pm from which time it grows colder and at midnight gets below zero for the first time in several days.

At midnight the sun is above the horizon.


Moon 9° N.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b59: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_079_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b5b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_079_1.jpg)


27 April 1881

Lat 76.31, Long 164.45

26 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 445 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 18' 30"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 164° 27'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 508 lbs


Max. temperature = 3°

Min. temperature = -11°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift S.W. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally bright and pleasant. Moderate N.E. breezes with steady barometer and unusually low temperature.

Crew engaged during the day in breaking out the after store room and scraping down the frost accumulations.

One of the dogs which strayed away from the ship on the evening of the 19th inst. returned on board this morning.


Moon 14° N.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b5d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_080_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b5f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_080_1.jpg)


28 April 1881

No position

27 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 445 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 20 tons 253 lbs


Max. temperature = 7°

Min. temperature = -13.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 35 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift S.S.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy to a considerable extent, but still pleasant. Light N.E. breeze backing to south and becoming very near calm. Slightly falling barometer and a warmer temperature.

Crew engaged in clearing and restowing after store room.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0245 at 44°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0247 at 44°

33 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0270 at 44°


Diatoms (Coscinodiscus) found in the bottom specimen for the first time. It is assumed that we are within the area of deposits from the Kolyma River.


Moon 17° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b61: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_081_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b63: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_081_1.jpg)


29 April 1881

Lat 76.30, Long 164.35

28 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 445 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 18'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 164° 21'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 365 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 2128 lbs


Max. temperature = 10°

Min. temperature = -3°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Light southerly airs backing to freshening east wind, with steady barometer and pleasant temperature.


Moon 20° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b65: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_082_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b67: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_082_1.jpg)


30 April 1881

No position

29 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 445 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 1873 lbs


Max. temperature = 9.5°

Min. temperature = 6°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under the bilge and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift W. x S. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Moderate east and N.E. gale, with falling barometer and uniform temperature. Much drift of the surface snow.

Crew engaged in finishing the re-stowage of the after store room, and in clearing up the spar deck.

At 10pm a bear came close to the ship but being surrounded and chased by the dogs before he could be fired at, made his escape unharmed.


Moon 22° N.

New moon



LOGS FOR MAY 1881


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b69: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_083_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b6b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_083_1.jpg)


1 May 1881

No position

30 April 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 445 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 1583 lbs


Max. temperature = 7°

Min. temperature = 4.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift S.W. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Moderate N.E. gale, with steady fall of snow after 6am, with falling barometer and uniform temperature.

From computation of the amount of work performed by the bilge pumps, the amount of water coming into the ship is found to be 7467.3 gallons per day or about 311 gallons per hour.

By actual measurement the thickness of the ice immediately surrounding the ship is found to be 7 feet 6 inches, being the result of direct freezing since August 31st, 1880.


Provisions condemned during the month

7 ½ lbs mutton soup

10 lbs beef soup

1 ½ lbs mackerel

8 ¼ lbs carrots

10 lbs flour

15 lbs roast mutton

23 ¼ lbs roast beef

8 ¼ lbs roast turkey

12 lbs pumpkin

30 lbs roast Rio coffee

1 bottle tomato catsup


Moon 23° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 540):

Ice found to be seven feet six inches in thickness, direct freezing since August 31, 1880.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b6d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_084_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b6f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_084_1.jpg)


2 May 1881

Lat 76.32, Long 163.17

1 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 460 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 19'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 163° 10'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 1293 lbs


Max. temperature = 8°

Min. temperature = -2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to S.W. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

At 10am all hands were called to muster. Read the act for the government of the Navy and mustered the crew. The ship was then inspected by the Commanding Officer.

At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

Fresh northerly breezes growing light after noon, with rising barometer and falling temperature.

At 5pm the ship received a shock under the stern, and shortly afterwards it was found that the ice had opened about 180 yards from her, making a lane of water from 10 to 20 feet in width and extending in an irregular bow and quarter line as far as could be seen among the rough ice.


Moon 23° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 540):

At five p.m. we got a sharp shock under the stern, and soon after we found the ice open about one hundred and eighty yards from the ship, and running in an irregular bow-and-quarter line as far as we could see it through the rough ice. It gave a chance for Chipp to make some interesting measures of ice thickness which I put in my general items book.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b71: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_085_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b73: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_085_1.jpg)


3 May 1881

No position

2 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 460 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 1003 lbs


Max. temperature = 4°

Min. temperature = -10°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Light N.N.E. breezes veering to light E.N.E. breezes, with rising barometer and falling temperature.


Moon 21° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b75: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_086_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b77: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_086_1.jpg)


4 May 1881

Lat 76.32, Long 163.18

3 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 460 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 19'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 163° 11'

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.45pm E. 17° 30'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 748 lbs


Max. temperature = 7°

Min. temperature = -12°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 33 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Light variable airs, steady barometer and uniformly changing temperature.

Crew engaged in digging away from the ship's side the masses of drifted snow by which she is surrounded.


Moon 19° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b79: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_087_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b7b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_087_1.jpg)


5 May 1881

No position

4 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 460 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 493 lbs


Max. temperature = 5°

Min. temperature = -14°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather bright and pleasant generally, though at times considerable fog prevailed. Light N.N.E. airs backing to west. Rising barometer succeeding a fall, and uniformly varying temperature.

Crew engaged in removing from the ship's side the masses of drift snow.

During the forenoon a flock of 10 geese were seen flying to the westward; and in the afternoon a flock of ducks were seen flying in the same direction.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 50°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 50°

30 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0254 at 50°


Moon 15° N.

New moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b7d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_088_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b7f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_088_1.jpg)


6 May 1881

No position

5 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 300 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 19 tons 193 lbs


Max. temperature = 10°

Min. temperature = -13.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather cloudy and somewhat dull much of the day with occasional clearing and brightening. Light S.W. airs and breeze with steady barometer and considerably varying temperature.

About 11am while a party of men were about a mile ahead of the ship a bear was sighted by them, and, being brought to by the dogs, was killed by Henry Wilson (seaman). The dimensions of the animal were: length 7 feet 11 inches, height 3 feet 11 inches, girth 5 feet 4 inches, and his weight 790 lbs.

During the forenoon a flock of 6 geese were seen flying to the westward.


Moon 12° N.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b81: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_089_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b83: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_089_1.jpg)


7 May 1881

No position

6 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 2178 lbs


Max. temperature = 4°

Min. temperature = -5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 31 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Light variable airs settling into a freshening E.N.E. breeze with falling barometer. Temperature increases until 6pm and then commences to fall.

At 1 and 4am the ship received several severe jars. After the last named hour, the opening of the 1st inst. about 180 yards distant was found to have partially closed; and cracks in the ice immediately surrounding the ship were discovered. One in the prolongation of the keel, ahead, and one extending from the starboard quarter were the most important cracks.

A flock of ducks, flying west, were observed during the afternoon.


Moon 7° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 541):

At one and four a.m. the ship received some severe shocks, and in the forenoon, when we came to look around, we found that the lead, one hundred and eighty yards off, had partially closed; that a crack extended ahead in line with the keel; one from our starboard quarter toward the one hundred and eighty yard lead, and several between the bow and beam on the starboard side. Not of importance any of them, unless as indicating a future line of opening.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b85: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_090_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b87: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_090_1.jpg)


8 May 1881

No position

7 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 1923 lbs


Max. temperature = 3.5°

Min. temperature = -4.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 32 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy generally, with fresh N.E. breezes, slightly falling barometer and low temperature.

During the afternoon the ice opened a little on the starboard bow and astern about 1 mile distant in both cases.


Moon 3° N.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 542):

Brisk east wind. The only effect seen resulting from this brisk wind was a re-opening of the one hundred and eighty yard lead and some water spaces a mile on the starboard bow and astern.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000b89: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_091_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b8b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_091_1.jpg)


9 May 1881

No position

8 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 1633 lbs


Max. temperature = 8.5°

Min. temperature = -4°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally cloudy and dull. Fresh E.N.E. breezes growing lighter after noon and veering finally to E.S.E. with steady barometer and rising temperature. Occasional fall of fine snow. Considerable water sky about the horizon at midnight.

Inspected at 10am. Divine service at 1.30pm.


Moon 2° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b8d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_092_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b8f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_092_1.jpg)


10 May 1881

No position

9 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 1343 lbs


Max. temperature = 17°

Min. temperature = 8.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather dull and gloomy with a nearly continuous fall of snow. Light easterly and S.E. breezes with steady barometer and very pleasant temperature.


Moon 7° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b91: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_093_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b93: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_093_1.jpg)


11 May 1881

No position

10 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 1088 lbs


Max. temperature = 18.5°

Min. temperature = 9.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift W. x S. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Moderate breezes from E'd with slightly falling barometer and increasing temperature. A steady fall of snow.


Moon 11° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b95: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_094_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b97: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_094_1.jpg)


12 May 1881

No position

11 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 465 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 290 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 798 lbs


Max. temperature = 18.5°

Min. temperature = 13°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 36 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift north being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with an overcast sky and frequent snow falls. Light easterly breezes veering to S.S.E. with steady barometer and comfortable temperature.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0244 at 49°

2 fathoms = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 49.5°

34 fathoms = - – Specific gravity = 1.0266 at 50°


Moon 16° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b99: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_095_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b9b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_095_1.jpg)


13 May 1881

Lat 76.55, Long 161.85

12 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 490 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 32' 43"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 51' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 365 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 433 lbs


Max. temperature = 13.5°

Min. temperature = 8°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded at noon in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Light S.E. breezes, rising barometer and comfortable temperatures.


Moon 19° S.

First quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000b9d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_096_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000b9f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_096_1.jpg)


14 May 1881

Lat 76.59, Long 161.68

13 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 495 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 35' 34"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 40' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 178 lbs


Max. temperature = 9°

Min. temperature = 5.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift N.E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy generally, though the sun was occasionally visible. Light S.E. breezes, rising barometer and uniform temperature. Almost continuous snow fall.


Moon 22° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ba1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_097_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ba3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_097_1.jpg)


15 May 1881

Lat 76.64, Long 161.79

14 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 490 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 38' 10"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 47' 15"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 18 tons 178 lbs


Max. temperature = 10°

Min. temperature = 5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Dull and gloomy weather, the sun being visible occasionally only. Moderate S.E. breezes, slightly falling barometer and increasing temperature. Almost continuous snow fall.

A flock of Eider Ducks were seen flying west during the forenoon.


Moon 23° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ba5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_098_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000ba7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_098_1.jpg)


16 May 1881

No position

15 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 490 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 1908 lbs


Max. temperature = 18.5°

Min. temperature = 10°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 44 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N. x E. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather continues dull and gloomy. Light S.E. and S. breezes, steady barometer and increasing temperature.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer. At 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.


Moon 22° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000ba9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_099_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bab: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_099_1.jpg)


17 May 1881

New discoveries - Jeannette Island

Lat 76.72, Long 161.90

16 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 500 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 43' 20"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 53' 45"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 6pm E. 17° 59'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 1653 lbs


Max. temperature = 14.5°

Min. temperature = -4°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 43 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy in the forenoon, clear and bright and pleasant in the afternoon. Light southerly breezes backing to N.E. finally, with rising barometer and remarkable fall in temperature below zero.

Lowered and hauled the dredge. A flock of wild geese seen flying west during the afternoon.

At 7pm land was sighted from aloft by Mr. William Dunbar, ice pilot, and bearing S. 78° 45' W. (magnetic) or N. 83° 15' W. true. It appears to be an island and such portion of it as is visible is of this shape;
Log Fragment 2
but owing to fog hanging partly over it and partly to the northward of it no certainty is felt that this is all of it. It is also visible from the deck, but no estimate can be made of its distance.

As no such land is laid down upon any charts in our possession, belief that we have made a discovery is permissible.

This is the first land of any kind seen by this ship since March 24th, 1880, at which date we saw for the last time the north side of "Wrangel's Land".


Moon 20° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 544 ff):

Land! There is something then besides ice in this world. About seven o'clock this evening Mr. Dunbar, who usually winds his way aloft several times a day, could hardly believe his eyes when they rested on an island to the westward. He called Chipp to look at it, and Chipp saw it was land sure enough, and sent Ericksen to inform me. I had just finished working out our position when the extraordinary news came, and was writing out the result: Latitude 76° 43' 20" N., longitude 161° 53' 45" E., a drift since the 14th of five and a half miles to N. 16° E. Of course I dropped my books and ran up to the fore yard, and there, sure enough, I saw a small island one half point forward of our starboard beam, the first land that has greeted our eyes since March 24, 1880, nearly fourteen months ago. And our voyage, thank God, is not a perfect blank, for here we have discovered something, however small it may be.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000bad: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_100_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000baf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_100_1.jpg)


18 May 1881

Lat 76.73, Long 161.71

17 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 500 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 43' 38"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 42' 30"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 6pm E. 19° 12'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 1398 lbs


Max. temperature = 11.5°

Min. temperature = -5.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 43 fathoms. Muddy bottom with pebbles. A slight drift N. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally clear, bright and pleasant. Light N.E. breezes, rising barometer, with a rising temperature until 3pm, and a falling temperature thence to midnight.

The land sighted yesterday remains visible all day but with greater clearness and distinctness. We are now able to determine its shape with greater exactness, and it is as below roughly sketched.

Log Fragment 3

The clouds of yesterday, or fog bank as then called, having disappeared from the upper part of the island, we are able to see apparent rocky cliffs with a snow-covered slope extending back to the westward from them, and terminating in a conical mass like a volcano top.


Moon 17° S.

Full moon


50a27fe07438ae05bd000bb1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_101_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bb3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_101_1.jpg)


19 May 1881

Lat 76.75, Long 161.51

18 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 500 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 44' 50"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 30' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 1143 lbs


Max. temperature = 11°

Min. temperature = -2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 56 fathoms. Mud and fine sand. A moderate drift to W. x N. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Freshening breezes from E.N.E., with falling barometer and an increasing temperature until 3pm from which time it again decreases.

Crew engaged in digging down through the ice on the port side of the stem, in an effort to reach the fore-foot. The ice was first bored to a depth of 10 feet 2 inches without getting to the bottom of it; next a hole was dug 4 feet in depth, and from the bottom of this hole a boring was made to a depth of 10 feet 2 inches, still not reaching the bottom of the ice at 14 feet 2 inches; but water now came oozing in to fill up the space dug, and further effort was not made. It is fair to assume that the thickness is of more than one floe, and that the water flows in between the blocks as they lie one above the other.

An opening occurred in the ice about 500 yards to the eastward of the ship, and partially closed at 10pm, the ship receiving several slight shocks as the edges of the ice came together.

The island remains in plain view all day, and at times after 6pm a very strong appearance of higher land beyond and to the westward is seen, seemingly connected by a snowy slope into what we have called an island.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0242 at 46°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0246 at 46°

54 fathoms = 30.5 – Specific gravity = 1.0274 at 46°


Moon 13° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 547):

The ice opened in a crack about five hundred yards to the eastward of the ship, and came together toward midnight, the ship receiving several slight shocks when the ice edges met.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000bb5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_102_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bb7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_102_1.jpg)


20 May 1881

No position

19 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 500 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 365 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 778 lbs


Max. temperature = 14°

Min. temperature = 2°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 41 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh east winds all day, at times blowing a moderate gale. Falling barometer and rising temperature.

At 9.30am the ice opened 70 yards from the starboard bow, leaving a lane of water about 20 feet in width and extending in a north and south direction about 3 miles. At the same time several other openings could be seen from aloft towards the N.W.

The island remains in plain view all day, though nothing can be seen of the high land beyond, the strong appearance of which is noted in yesterday's log.

The center of the island now bears west true, but as no observations could be attained to day its position and distance can not be determined by the change of bearing.


Moon 7° S.

Full moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 547 ff):

At 9.30 a.m. the ice quietly opened seventy yards from our starboard bow, and a lane of water about twenty feet in width extended north and south for about three miles, and several other cracks and lanes were visible to the northwest. Whether when we get to the westward of our island the ice will spread and open remains to be seen; but this lane is quite close enough, unless we can use it for an advance. We have a crack under our starboard counter that may connect, and a crack ahead in the line of our keel as a starter, which may at any time leave our whole starboard side bare.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000bb9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_103_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bbb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_103_1.jpg)


21 May 1881

Lat 76.87, Long 161.13

20 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 510 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 52' 22"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 161° 7' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 523 lbs


Max. temperature = 16.5°

Min. temperature = 11.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 42 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Fresh east winds continue at times increasing to moderate gale with steady barometer and nearly even temperature.

At 8.30am the ship received a blow under water, seemingly near the stern-post, caused no doubt by her coming in contact with a submerged and drifting block of ice.

The point of the island which on the 16th inst. bore N. 83° 15' W. (true), to day bears S. 78° 30' W. (true), from which change of bearing it is computed that the island is now 24 3/5 miles distant. The position of the observed point is therefore Lat 76° 47' 28" N., Long 159° 20' 45" E.

From measurement by a sextant it is found that the island as seen to day subtends an angle of 2° 10'.


Moon 2° S.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 548):

At 8.30 a.m. the ship received a blow under water, seemingly near the stern post, and doubtless from some drifting, submerged ice-block.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000bbd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_104_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bbf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_104_1.jpg)


22 May 1881

Lat 76.98

21 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 515 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 76° 58' 39"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations No observation


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 268 lbs


Max. temperature = 17.5°

Min. temperature = 10°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 42 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Moderate gale from E. x S. all day. Nearly steady barometer until toward midnight when it commenced to fall. Steadily increasing temperature. Snow falling after 6pm.


Moon 3° N.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000bc1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_105_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bc3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_105_1.jpg)


23 May 1881

No position

22 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 515 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 17 tons 13 lbs


Max. temperature = 30.5°

Min. temperature = 17°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 44 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with an almost steady fall of snow. Moderate easterly gale blowing at times in hard squalls, with rapidly falling barometer and as rapidly increasing temperature.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer; and at 1.30pm divine service was performed in the cabin.

At 9am the ship received a severe shock, caused probably by a block of ice striking her under water.


Moon 8° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 549):

At nine a.m. the ship received another severe shock, probably striking ice under water.



50a27fe07438ae05bd000bc5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_106_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bc7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_106_1.jpg)


24 May 1881

No position

23 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 515 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 1998 lbs


Max. temperature = 30.5°

Min. temperature = 20.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 44 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A rapid drift to N.N.W. (magnetic) being indicated by the lead line. - (the word "magnetic" on the line above is introduced inadvertently, for all bearings recorded in the log are magnetic unless otherwise mentioned.)

Dull and gloomy weather. Fresh E.S.E. breezes veering and backing alternately through the day, finally dying away at E.N.E. and being succeeded by a calm. Barometer still falling and temperature slowly decreasing. Almost steady fall of large soft snow flakes.


Moon 12° N.

Last quarter


50a27fe07438ae05bd000bc9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_107_0.jpg)

50a27fe07438ae05bd000bcb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_107_1.jpg)


25 May 1881

Henrietta Island

Lat 77.27, Long 159.56

24 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 16' 3"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 159° 33' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 1743 lbs


Max. temperature = 27°

Min. temperature = 21°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

The engineer’s force are occupied in putting the wind mill pumping gear into working order.

Weather generally dull and gloomy, the sun occasionally however breaking through the clouds. Light variable airs and calms. Rising barometer and uniform temperature.

John Lauterbach (coal heaver) sustained a severe sprain in the back by reason of an accident in the transporting of a skin boat over the ice. He was one of a party of men engaged in this work, and while carrying the boat on their shoulders, it slipped and brought too much weight on this single man.

At 8am the ice was found to have opened in numerous long lanes, some connected and some single extending generally in the N.N.W. and S.S.E. direction. By making occasional portages boats were able to go several miles from the vessel, but for the ship herself there were no ice openings of sufficient magnitude.

Sounded in 40 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

The strong appearance of land mentioned on the 18th inst. proves to day to have been land in fact, and for reasons similar to those herein set forth (in the remarks of the 16th inst) it may be recorded as another discovery. This second land is an island, of which the position and present distance are yet to be ascertained. The following bearings were taken.

Ship's head = S. 14° W. true

Eastern end of island first seen on 16th inst. = S. 17° W. true

Nearest end (southern?) of island seen to day = S. 69° 30' W. true

The following sextant angles were taken from the crow's nest.

Island first seen subtends an angle of 2° 42' – island seen to day subtends an angle of 3° 35'

Island first seen has an altitude of 0° 16' – island seen to day has an altitude of 0° 10'

Interval between two islands = 49° 55'


Moon 17° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 550 ff):

The first thing I heard upon arising this morning was that more land was in sight, and the next thing was that the ice was very slack, with many large lanes of water. The strong appearance of land on the 20th, towards midnight, proves to have been land in reality, — another island being added to our discoveries, somewhat longer (if not less distant) than our first named. Upon going up to the crow's nest I had a good view of both islands and of more water than we have seen since September, 1879. In consequence of the subsidence of the wind, the ice has become very slack, and numerous long openings or lanes have occurred, varying in width from twenty to one hundred feet, and in length from one eighth mile to three miles. Unfortunately for purposes of navigation they are not connected, and though having a general northwest and southeast direction, do not lead to anything. Just at this moment I would be contented if by any means I could get the ship into one of these islands for a temporary breathing spell, and a chance to get some game for our supplies; but, unfortunately, I cannot saw through thirty miles of ice or blast that amount out of my way. The lanes of water are very tantalizing, for they indicate what might be done if there were more of them. They seem to be in our neighborhood only, or within a radius of five miles, while the islands are thirty, and say forty miles off, — and from that five miles radius to the islands the ice is as close and compact as ever.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000bcd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_108_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bcf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_108_1.jpg)


26 May 1881

Lat 77.30, Long 159.54

25 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 18' 11"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 159° 32' 15"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.30pm E. 18° 33'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 1488 lbs


Max. temperature = 27°

Min. temperature = 20.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather cloudy but pleasant until midnight, when the sky becomes entirely overcast. Light N.E. breezes backing to north and freshening somewhat with rising barometer and uniform temperature.

Many of the lanes of water mentioned in yesterday's log are found closed this morning, the ice having come together during the night. Over the remainder a thin film of ice has formed.

Carpenters engaged in repairing light McClintock dingy.

Hauled the dredge which was lowered at 10pm yesterday.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 30° – Specific gravity = 1.0234 at 53°

2 fathoms = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0230 at 53°

37 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0262 at 52.5°


Moon 20° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 553):

Many of our lanes are found closed to-day, the ice having come together during the night. A light film, say one eighth of an inch of ice, formed over the lanes not disturbed.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000bd1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_109_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bd3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_109_1.jpg)


27 May 1881

No position

26 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 365 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 1123 lbs


Max. temperature = 23°

Min. temperature = 17.5°


Until 8pm the pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine. After 8pm the starboard flood gate in the forward bulkhead was opened and the water allowed to flow aft, upon which the wind mill was set to work and pumped out the water as it accumulated in the fire room.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather dull and gloomy with an overcast sky nearly all day. North-west breezes of variable velocities, at times blowing in strong puffs and at other times almost dying away. Rising barometer and uniformly changing temperature.

The ice seemed to be quite slack again. Numerous small ponds and disconnected lanes of water being visible from aloft. Both islands were hidden from view until after 6pm.


Moon 22° N.

Last quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 553):

The ice seemed to slack up again to-day, numerous unconnected lanes and ponds showing themselves, but of no use to us yet.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000bd5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_110_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bd7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_110_1.jpg)


28 May 1881

Lat 77.25, Long 159.27

27 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 14' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 159° 16'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 868 lbs


Max. temperature = 25°

Min. temperature = 17.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

At 8am closed the gates of the forward bulkhead.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy generally. Light variable airs and calms, with steady barometer and uniformly changing temperature.

Crew engaged throughout the day in clearing away ice and snow from the spar deck and in airing and drying boats, sails and covers, and travelling tents and blankets.


Moon 23° N.

New moon


50a27fe17438ae05bd000bd9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_111_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bdb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_111_1.jpg)


29 May 1881

No position

28 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 613 lbs


Max. temperature = 19°

Min. temperature = 15.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift west being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Variable light airs and breezes with falling barometer and low temperature.


Moon 23° N.

New moon


50a27fe17438ae05bd000bdd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_112_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bdf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_112_1.jpg)


30 May 1881

No position

29 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 358 lbs


Max. temperature = 23°

Min. temperature = 16°


A great deal of the pumping to day is done by the wind mill pump, and the gate in the bulkhead forward is kept open in order to let the water flow aft readily.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 40 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to N.W. x W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with a constantly overcast sky. Light easterly breezes, slightly rising barometer and generally increasing temperature.

At 10am the ship was inspected by the Commanding Officer; and at 1.30pm divine service was read in the cabin.

During the afternoon the horizon cleared a little and both islands heretofore mentioned were visible, and a third island was discovered, situated beyond these two and visible between them on a bearing of about S.W. x S. true. As by reason of intervening hummocks and ice ridges, exact bearings cannot be obtained from deck, the bearing of this island is estimated in points from the crow's nest aloft.

At 7pm an immense flock of ducks, estimated at 500, passed the ship, flying low and disappeared to the north (true).


Moon 22° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 555):

The ice seems to be very close again, an easterly breeze setting it in motion enough to press against the islands and close all lanes.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000be1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_113_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000be3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_113_1.jpg)


31 May 1881

Excursion to Henrietta Island

No position

30 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 16 tons 103 lbs


Max. temperature = 20°

Min. temperature = 15°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 46 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift N.N.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with a steadily overcast sky, and occasional snow fall during the forenoon. Light northerly and north-easterly breezes with rising barometer and generally falling temperature.

The ice seems very compact again in every direction, nearly all lanes having closed. A few spots are visible here and there covered with young ice.

Carpenters engaged in removing porch from starboard side of galley house. Crew engaged in digging a trench around the vessel, and after 4pm in getting up provisions &c in readiness for sledge party directed to leave the ship tomorrow morning.


Moon 19° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 555):

I have decided to send a party to try to make a landing on Henrietta Island. Tired of waiting for a chance to get observations to determine its position, I accept twelve miles as its probable distance southwest and a half west, true. Though I know the traveling will be heavy, I hope that by sending two officers, four men, fifteen dogs, with a sled and light dingy (for ferriage), and seven days' provisions, as the only heavy weights, they will be able to accomplish my object, — landing, leaving a record of our condition, and perhaps bringing back a good supply of birds. Having but one commissioned officer available, Melville, he must take charge of the party. With Chipp and Danenhower both on the sick-list, they can neither be sent, nor left in charge of the ship if I go myself, as is my strong desire. The doctor cannot go, for his steady sick-list puts him hors concours, and my responsibility for the ship and the safety of all hands will not permit me to leave her in charge of Mr. Dunbar, the only sailor man in the cabin besides myself fit for duty. Consequently I make out orders for Mr. Melville to go in command, and to take Mr. Dunbar, Nindemann, Ericksen, Bartlett, and Sharvell with him, and to start to-morrow morning. The weather continues good, with light winds, and barometer rising to 30, and I think we are drawing in toward the island all the time with the ship. Such arrangements as I have made for them and their return I will write out in full to-morrow.



LOGS FOR JUNE 1881


50a27fe17438ae05bd000be5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_114_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000be7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_114_1.jpg)


1 June 1881

No position

31 May 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 45 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 2088 lbs


Max. temperature = 17°

Min. temperature = 9°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift south being indicated by the lead line.

Weather continues dull and gloomy until 9pm when it partially clears, the sun showing occasionally. Light northerly airs, rising barometer and unusually low temperature.

At 9am a party consisting of Passed Assistant Engineer G.W. Melville, Mr. William Dunbar, W.F.C. Nindemann (seaman), H.H. Erickson (seaman) J.H. Bartlett (1st class fireman) and Walter Sharvell (coal heaver) started to make an attempt to land upon the island discovered by us on the 24th inst., and which bears S.W. ½ W. true at an estimated distance of 12 miles. They carried with them the light dinghy secured upon a sled drawn by 15 dogs and provisions for 7 days besides knapsacks, tent sleeping bags and arms.

All hands assembled on the ice to witness departure and cheers were exchanged as the sled moved off. At 6pm the travelling party could be seen from aloft at about 5 miles distance from the ship.


Provisions condemned during the month

62 lbs oatmeal – spoiled by salt water


Moon 16° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 556 ff):

At nine a.m., everything being ready, the sledge party, in charge of Melville, started. Mr. Dunbar, Nindemann, Ericksen, Bartlett and Sharvell composed the personnel, and the following the material:


15 dogs,

6 sleeping-bags,

42 lbs. American pemmican,

10 ½ lbs. sardines,

21 lbs. pigs' feet,

42 lbs. mutton-broth,

42 oz. lime juice,

5 ¼ lbs. coffee,

1 McClintock sled,

2 5/8 lbs. tea,

1 McClintock dingy,

5 ¼ lbs. chocolate,

1 tent,

10 ½ lbs. sugar,

5 tent-poles,

2 rubber blankets,

210 lbs. English pemmican,

6 packed knapsacks,

42 lbs. bread,

2 rifles,

1 cooking-stove and mess gear,

2 shot-guns,

Sextant, artificial horizon, prismatic compass, opera-glass, ensign, medicine, etc.


We all assembled on the ice, and of course cheers were exchanged. Away they went merrily enough until they came to an ice opening, where they were obliged to make a ferriage. Here some of their dogs ran away and returned to the ship, but I sent them back at once, and followed up the sled until they made a new departure. I watched them frequently from the crow's-nest, and at six p.m. I saw them about five miles from the ship, evidently halting for a rest.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000be9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_115_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000beb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_115_1.jpg)


2 June 1881

Lat 77.27

1 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 16' 14"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 1833 lbs


Max. temperature = 15°

Min. temperature = 8.5°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift. Lowered and hauled the dredge.

Weather dull and gloomy. Light N. and N.W. breezes, rising barometer and increasing temperature.

The ice seems slack again, a large opening having occurred during the night near the ship, extending about a mile S.S.W. and N.N.E., in places a hundred feet in width, and distant about 200 yards.

During the afternoon the travelling party was in sight from aloft seemingly more than half way to the island.

The following bearings were taken:

Ship's head S. 10° W. (true)

E. end of island No 1 = S. 10° 30' E. (true)

S. end of island No 2 = S. 51° W. (true)

N. end of island No 2 = S. 57° W. (true)


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0235 at 50°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0234 at 50°

37 fathoms = 31° – Specific gravity = 1.0266 at 50°


Moon 13° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 558f):

What next? The doctor informs me this morning that he is of opinion that several of our party under his treatment are suffering from lead poisoning.

But upon examining our tomatoes, they were found to show traces of lead in larger amounts than the water, and the doctor thinks that the distemper, if I may so call it, is due to our large consumption of that vegetable. The acid of the tomato acts chemically upon the solder used in the tins, and the dangerous mixture is formed; and since we have had tomatoes every day for dinner subsequent to May 4th, it is assumed that we have become largely dosed with lead, and some of us have had to succumb.

Dull and gloomy weather; temperature, maximum 15°, minimum 8°, — lovely for a June day. (Strawberries will be late this year in these latitudes.) The ice seems to have slacked up again, a wide opening occurring about twenty yards west of the ship, and extending for a mile north northwest and south-southeast.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000bed: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_116_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bef: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_116_1.jpg)


3 June 1881

Lat 77.23, Long 158.25

2 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 540 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude assumed N. 77° 14'

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 158° 15'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 365 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 1468 lbs


Max. temperature = 16.5°

Min. temperature = 11°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump, and such water as filters aft through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by hand at the bilge pump attached to the main engine.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 45 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift south being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy. Light N.W. breezes, steady barometer and uniform temperature.

No water in sight. All the openings of yesterday are covered with young ice.


Moon 9° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 561):

Everything about the ice seems to have come to a stand again. Ice has formed over all openings.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000bf1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_117_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bf3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_117_1.jpg)


4 June 1881

Lat 77.21, Long 158.20

3 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 560 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 12' 55"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 158° 11' 45"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 1213 lbs


Max. temperature = 14°

Min. temperature = 12°


The pumping forward is done by hand at the spar deck bilge pump. During the afternoon the quarter deck bilge pumps are rigged for an hour and all the water which filtered through and under and bulkhead into the fire room is pumped out by them.

It is computed that the amount of leak is 4874 gallons per day or about 203 gallons per hour.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather continues dull and gloomy. Light N.N.W. breezes, steady barometer and even temperature.

From the domed and cracked appearance of the ice around the stern it would seem that the ship is endeavoring to rise from her ice deck. To facilitate her rising, and to relieve the strain upon the keel under the propeller, the men are engaged forenoon and afternoon in digging away the ice under the counters and in the neighborhood of the propeller-well. The said ice is of a flinty hardness and clings so closely to the ship as to show the grain of the wood, and to tear out the oakum visible where the ship's rising has left open spaces.

Carpenters engaged in repairing steam cutter's rail.

Bearings of the island toward which the travelling party was sent:

South end = S. 52° W. (true)

North end = S. 61° W. (true)


Moon 4° N.

New moon



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 561 ff):

We discovered this morning that the ice under the stern was domed up and cracked, and we came to the conclusion that the ship was trying to rise in her bed. To facilitate this operation, and to prevent too much strain being brought on her keel which prolongs under the rudder, the men were set to work digging away the ice. It was a tough job, for it is as hard as flint, and clings like an old and tried friend. Here and there the mark of the fibre of the wood shows in the attached ice, and in several places the oakum has been torn out of the seams when the ship has been raised a little.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000bf5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_118_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bf7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_118_1.jpg)


5 June 1881

No position

4 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 560 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 958 lbs


Max. temperature = 17.5°

Min. temperature = 12°


The pumping generally is done by the wind mill pump; and for an hour in the afternoon the quarter deck bilge pumps are rigged and manned and all the water pumped out which lodged in the engine room abaft the suction of the wind mill pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift S.S.E. (mag) being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with occasional snow flurries. Light N.W. breezes, steady barometer and uniform temperature.

At 11am started a fire on the ice ahead of the ship, adding tar and oakum to make a black smoke as a signal of our location to the absent travelling party. At 4pm the weather being foggy, fired a charge from the "brass gun" and one from a "whale gun" as a similar signal.

At 5pm a bear came near the ship from the leeward, but escaped unhurt though fired at and chased.

Crew engaged in digging away the ice under the stern.

Carpenter finished repairs to steam cutter.


Moon 0° 30' S.

First quarter


50a27fe17438ae05bd000bf9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_119_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000bfb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_119_1.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000c11: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_125_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000c13: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_125_1.jpg)


6 June 1881

The party returns

No position

5 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 560 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 703 lbs


Max. temperature = 16°

Min. temperature = 13°


The pumping throughout the day is done by the wind mill pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 39 fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather dull and gloomy with occasional snow squalls. Moderate N.W. breezes, steady barometer and rising temperature.

At 10am called all hands to muster and read the act for the government of the Navy. The Commanding Officer then inspected the ship. At 1.30pm divine service was read in the cabin.


At 6am sighted the travelling party making their way back to the ship. As soon as possible sent the starboard watch out to assist them in. At 9am the sled arrived alongside drawn by the dogs, and accompanied by W.F.C. Nindemann (seaman), H.H. Erickson (seaman) and J.H. Bartlett (1st class fireman). Mr. William Dunbar (ice pilot) was brought in by the party, having been disabled by snow blindness. P. A. Engineer Melville and Walter Sharvell (coal heaver) remained about a mile from the ship with the McClintock dingy, the sled having broken a runner. Sent the port watch with sled to bring in boat, and at 9.40am P.A. Engineer Melville and Walter Sharvell (coal heaver) with all remaining travelling gear arrived on board.


The party landed on the island at 5.30pm Thursday June 2nd (Friday June 3rd) hoisted our national ensign and took possession of our discoveries in the name of the United States of America.


The island discovered on May 16th has been named and will hereafter be known as Jeannette Island. It is situated in Lat. N. 76° 47' and Long E. 158° 56'.


The island discovered on May 24th and landed upon as above stated has been named and will hereafter be known as Henrietta Island. It is situated in Lat N. 77° 8', and Long E. 157° 43'.


Moon 5° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 563 ff):

At six a.m., Manson, the man on watch, informed me that the traveling party was in sight. Going out on deck, I could see the silk flag here and there appearing among the hummocks as the sled advanced through the ice. I ordered our colors to be shown, and the men to be turned out to receive the travelers, and then hastening out on the ice tried to fire the whale-gun as a signal to our people that they were seen. After failing once or twice, I left the gun in charge of the men who had come on deck, and came on board.

To my relief I could count six people, and all hands seemingly had come to a halt. As soon as possible, I sent out Mr. Cole and the starboard watch to meet them and help them in. At 8.50 a.m. along came the sled, drawn by the dogs and three of the six travelers. Melville and Sharvell had remained with the boat, and Mr. Dunbar was carried part way and walked part way, and reached the ship snow-blind. He was disabled at noon on the third day out, and led or carried thenceforth. Melville sent me the following message, on receipt of which I sent the port watch in Sweetman's charge with a spare sled, and, accompanied by the doctor, I went forward shortly after. By 9.40 a.m. I had them all on board, worn and tired, it is true, but no one disabled but Mr. Dunbar.

Melville's message:


"10.30 a.m. I have just broken the sleigh runner, dismounted my boat, and am in the midst of a heavy jam of ice. Please send another sled at once. Landed on the island 5.10 p.m., third day out.

Respectfully, Melville.

To Lieutenant De Long, Commanding Jeannette."


The party landed on the island on Thursday, June 2d (Friday, June 3d), hoisted our silk flag, took possession of the island in the name of the Great Jehovah and the United States of America, and, agreeably to my orders, named it Henrietta Island. They built a cairn and placed within it the record which I sent with them, and made as much examination of the island and search for vegetation as their limited stay would permit. The island is a desolate rock, surmounted by a snow-cap, which feeds several discharging glaciers on its east face. Dovekies nesting in the face of the rock are the only signs of game. A little moss, some grass, and a handful of rock were brought back as trophies. The cliffs are inaccessible, because of their steepness. The ice between the ship and the island is something frightful.


Road-digging, ferrying, and its attendant loading and unloading, arm-breaking hauls, and panic-stricken dogs made their journey a terribly severe one. Near the island the ice was all alive, and Melville left his boat and supplies, and carrying only a day's provisions and his instruments, at the risk of his life went through the terrible mass, actually dragging the dogs, which from fear refused to follow their human leaders. If this persistence in landing upon this island, in spite of the superhuman difficulties he encountered, is not reckoned a brave and meritorious action, it will not be from any failure on my part to make it known. I issued a general order communicating the names and positions of the two islands: Jeannette Island (our discovery of May 16th), in latitude N. 76° 47', longitude E. 158° 56'; and Henrietta Island (our discovery of May 24th), in latitude N. 77° 8', longitude E. 157° 43'; and in the evening I ordered a double ration of whiskey served out forward.

Thank God, we have at least landed upon a newly discovered part of this earth, and a perilous journey has been accomplished without disaster. It was a great risk, but it has resulted in some advantage.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000c15: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_126_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000c17: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_126_1.jpg)


7 June 1881

Lat 77.17

6 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 560 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 11' 10"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 448 lbs


Max. temperature = 22°

Min. temperature = 13°


The pumping throughout the day is done by the wind mill pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 38 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A moderate drift S.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather generally dull and gloomy. Toward 6pm it commenced to clear a little, but from thence to midnight much fog prevailed. Large ponds of water in sight in all directions and great activity in the ice. Lanes of water opening and closing during the forenoon, and wherever edges of ice fields come together, large ridges and confused heaps of floe pieces are thrown up. The ship and her surrounding floe are drifting to the S'd and W'd, and sometimes due west, and are going to pass across the north face of Henrietta Island. The floe surrounding the ship (and it is an irregular island whose greatest diameter is about 1 mile, and least diameter about ½ mile) seems to be the firmest ice in the neighborhood of the island; but beyond our floe there is nothing but a chaotic mass of rubble ice, grinding and crashing and piling up whenever it meets resistance, and settling down and spreading apart when the impeding obstacle is removed. This, seemingly, continues from the edge of our surrounding floe to the shores and cliffs of Henrietta Island and is no doubt occasioned by the passage of the ice fields across the north face of that island. There are no connected lanes or ponds giving an egress in any direction.

In anticipation of our floe breaking up and our being launched into the confusion reigning about us, hoisted the steam cutter, brought aboard the kayaks and oomiak, and removed from the ice such of our belongings as could not be secured at a few moments notice.


Moon 10° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 566):

While the ocean around us has been alive all day we have remained perfectly calm and undisturbed. This morning we found that such a disruption of the ice-fields had occurred as to leave us on the western side of a floe island, about one hundred yards from its edge, and that the whole of the outside ice was broken up into a terribly confused heap of rolling, tumbling, and grinding floebergs, forcibly reminding us of our experiences of November, 1879. We were evidently in transit across the north face of Henrietta Island, and bound westward ho!


Our ice-island was irregular in shape, with its longer diameter about a mile in extent, and its shorter diameter about half that amount. Close to us we had plenty of water, but it was in disconnected spots, and we should have been infinitely worse off had we been in one of them. No lead making toward Henrietta Island was to be seen, and in fact the changes going on all over, except in our isolated spot, were so kaleidoscopic that it would have been impossible to detect such a lead if it had existed. Lanes and openings were forming and closing during all the forenoon, and every once in a while the sudden rearing up of some ridge of broken floe pieces, twenty and thirty feet high, showed where a lane had closed, or the sudden tumbling of a mound showed where a lane was opening. In all this confusion worse confounded we remained as quiet as ever. We were moving along slowly and grandly, a dignified figure in the midst of a howling wilderness. Had our floe broken up and hurled us adrift we should have had the liveliest time in our cruise, for to have escaped destruction would have been a miracle, and to have got anything or any person out of the ship in case of accident an impossibility. One can hardly fall back upon yawning chasms for launching boats or depositing provisions.



50a27fe17438ae05bd000c19: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_127_0.jpg)

50a27fe17438ae05bd000c1b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/final/USS Jeannette/vol004of004/vol004_127_1.jpg)


8 June 1881

No position

7 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 560 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


No observations


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 15 tons 193 lbs


Max. temperature = 17.5°

Min. temperature = 12°


The pumping throughout the day is done by the wind mill pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 37 fathoms. Muddy bottom. A slight drift to W.S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather dull and gloomy with occasional fog. Moderate N.E. breezes, steady barometer and uniformly changing temperature. An almost steady fall of light snow.

So thick was the fog until 10am that our position with reference to Henrietta Island could not be determined. But at that hour the fog cleared away and the island was sighted right ahead and at a distance of about 4 miles. As indicated yesterday we were being drifted across the north face.


The following bearings were taken at 10am and 8pm:



10am

8pm

Ship's head

S. 8° 00' W. true

S. 8° 00' W. true

Glacier Point

S. 4° 30' W. true

hidden

Glacier edges

S. 5° 30' W. true, S. 6° 00' W.

hidden

Black Head

S. 7° 30' W. true

S. 19° 30' E. true

1st cliff

S. 17° 00' W. true

S. 9° 30' E. true

2nd cliff

S. 19° 30' W. true

S. 7° 30' E. true


and a new point opened to view, probably S.W. end S. 3° 30' E. true


All of the large openings near us have closed; and the general appearance of the ice to the west and N.W. is that of an immense field broken up in many places by the large piles of broken floe pieces, but with no water spaces.

Considerable water sky is visible to the S. and S.W., and several unconnected lanes of water are to be seen in those directions. The ice having passed the obstruction caused by Henrietta Island has closed up again and resumed its accustomed drift to the N.W.


Moon 14° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 568 ff):

At ten a.m. the fog cleared away for the first time since five p.m. yesterday, and we saw the island right ahead (S. 80° W. true), and about four miles distant. We were clearly in transit across the north face of the island, and so steadily did we move that it was easy to check our flying-jib stay as it passed slowly from point to point. The confusion worse confounded of yesterday was tranquillized, though many ridges of piled up floe pieces between us and Henrietta Island showed that the fight must have gone on all night, as our fields ground and ploughed their way along. Many of the large water spaces had closed tightly, and the very large one which was on the west side of our ice-island had disappeared. A long ridge of ice-slabs and blocks six and seven feet thick had fenced us in on that side, showing where a meeting had taken place and a crush had occurred, of which we had been quite unconscious, though it was only one hundred and fifty yards distant. Considerable water-sky was visible to the southward and south-west, and several unconnected lanes were to be seen in those directions. The ice having passed the obstruction caused by Henrietta Island had seemingly closed up again and resumed its accustomed drift N.W. In that direction the ice extended in a limitless field.



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9 June 1881

Lat 77.25, Long 156.69

8 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 580 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 14' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 156° 41' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 14 tons 2178 lbs


Max. temperature = 16.5°

Min. temperature = 12°


The pumping throughout the day is done by the wind mill pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 34 ½ fathoms. Brown mud. A rapid drift S.W. being indicated by the lead line.

Weather continues dull and gloomy. Fresh N.E. wind. Steady barometer and uniformly low temperature.

A little lane of water remains on what were the north and east sides of an ice island, but everywhere else the ice seems firmly closed. A few spots of Henrietta Island occasionally seen bearing S.E. x S. true.

Lowered and hauled the dredge.


Water temperatures and specific gravities

Surface temperature = 29.5° – Specific gravity = 1.0234 at 46°

2 fathoms = 29° – Specific gravity = 1.0234 at 46°

33 fathoms = 30° – Specific gravity = 1.0264 at 45.5°


Moon 18° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 569):

A little lane of water remains on what were the north and east sides of our island, but otherwise the ice-field seems as boundless as ever. We are leaving Henrietta Island rapidly to the eastward of us, and before many days it may be lost to view. Inasmuch as we have passed it already, one might call it a thing of the past. (I am afraid that is a poor joke, but since the windmill struck me I can do no better.)



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10 June 1881

Lat 77.24, Long 156.13

9 June 1881

Beset and drifting in the pack ice about 590 miles N.W. of Herald Island, Arctic Ocean


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 14' 20"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 156° 7' 30"

Variation of the compass by azimuth Sun observed at 5.20pm E. 18° 36'


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 365 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 14 tons 1813 lbs


Max. temperature = 14.5°

Min. temperature = 10°


The pumping throughout the day is done by the wind mill pump.

The steam cutter's boiler is used for distilling.

Sounded in 33 ½ fathoms. Muddy bottom. No perceptible drift.

Weather clear, bright and pleasant. Moderate N.E. breezes, rising barometer and uniform temperature.


The following bearings of Henrietta Island were taken at 5.20pm:

Ship's head = S. 13° 30' W. true

S.W. point of island = S. 59° 24' E. true

2nd cliff = S. 64° 30' E. true

Black Head = S. 66° 30' E. true


At 11pm the ship received several severe jars. At 11.30 the ice 80 yards to the westward opened to a width of 10 feet, and after several shocks from the ice the ship was found to have risen an inch forward. At midnight there was considerable motion to our surrounding floe, and strong indications of a breaking up of the ice alongside the ship.


Moon 21° S.

First quarter



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 570):

At eleven p.m. the ship received several severe jars. At 11.30 the old eighty-yard lead, or what was left of it, opened to a width of ten feet, and at midnight such a snapping and cracking took place around us that I concluded we were in for a time, and hastily bundling on my clothes I rushed out.



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Editor's note: This page is a copy of the left-hand page of 11 June 1881

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11 June 1881

Crushed by the ice

Lat 77.23, Long 155.78

10 June 1881


Latitude by observation at Noon N. 77° 13' 45"

Longitude by chronometer from afternoon observations E. 155° 46' 30"


Water expended during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Water distilled during the preceding 24 hours: 35 gallons

Coal consumed during the preceding 24 hours: 255 lbs

Coal remaining on hand at noon: 14 tons 1558 lbs


At 12.10am the ice suddenly opened alongside and the ship righted to an even keel. Called all hands at once and brought in the few remaining things on the ice. The ship settled down to her proper bearings nearly. The draft forward being 8 ft. 11 in. forward and 12 ft. 6 inches aft. A large block of ice could be seen remaining under her keel. At the first alarm the gate in the water tight bulkheads forward was closed, but the amount of water coming into the ship was found to decrease, a small stream trickling aft, being all that could be seen.


There being many large spaces of water near us and the ice having a generally broken up appearance, it was concluded to ship the rudder to be ready for an emergency awaiting the moving of the ship. After some trouble in removing accumulations of ice around the gudgeon the rudder was shipped, and everything cleared away in the wake of the booms and yards for making sail.


As well as could be judged by looking down through the water under the counters there was no injury whatever to the after booy of the ship. As soon as possible a bow line and quarter line had been got out and the ship secured temporarily to the ice which remained on the starboard side, as nearly in the same berth as she could be placed. By looking down through the water alongside the stern on the port side, one of the bow straps near the fore foot was seen to be sprung off, but otherwise no damage could be detected.


It was assumed by me that the heavy ice which all along bore heavily against the stem had held the plank ends open at the garboards, open, and that as soon as the ship was able to move from the heavy ice the wood ends came together again closing much of the opening and reducing the leak. The water line or rather water level being below the berth deck, no difficulty was anticipated in keeping the ship afloat and navigating her to some port should she ever be liberated from the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean. Sounded in 33 fathoms. Bottom mud. Rapid drift W.S.W.



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 571):

At 12.10 a.m. the ice suddenly opened alongside, and the ship righted to an even keel. Called all hands at once, and brought in the few remaining things on the ice. The ship settled down to her proper bearings nearly, the draft being eight feet eleven inches forward, and twelve feet five inches aft. A large block of ice could be seen remaining under her keel. At the first alarm the gate in the water-tight bulkhead forward was closed, but the amount of water coming into the ship was found to decrease, a small stream trickling aft being all that could be seen.

There being many large spaces of water near us, and the ice having a generally broken up appearance, it was concluded to ship the rudder, to be ready for an emergency awaiting the moving of the ship. After some trouble in removing accumulations of ice around the gudgeons the rudder was shipped, and everything cleared away in the wake of the booms and yards for making sail.


As well as could be judged by looking down through the water under the counters, there was no injury whatever to the after body of the ship. As soon as possible a bow line and quarter line had been got out, and the ship secured temporarily to the ice which remained on her starboard side as nearly in the same berth as she could be placed. By looking down through the water alongside the stem on the port side, one of the bow straps near her forefoot was seen to be sprung off, but otherwise no damage could be detected. It was assumed by me that the heavy ice which all along bore heavily against the stem had held the plank ends open at the garboards, and that as soon as the ship was able to move from the heavy ice the wood ends came together again, closing much of the opening and reducing the leak; the water-line, or rather water-level, being below the berth deck. No difficulty was anticipated in keeping the ship afloat and navigating her to some port, should she ever be liberated from the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean.



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12 June 1881


11 June 1881



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 572 ff):

At 7.30 a.m. the ice commenced to move toward the port side, but after advancing a foot or two came to rest. Employed one watch in hauling heavy floe into a small canal on the port bow, to close it up, and receive the greater part of the thrust.

The ice at ten a.m. had advanced toward the port side until these floe pieces had received the thrust, and everything quieted down again. The situation of the ship and her surroundings may be seen below.


At four p.m. the ice came down in great force all along the port side, jamming the ship hard against the ice on the starboard side of her, and causing her to heel 16° to starboard. From the snapping and cracking of the bunker sides and starting in of the starboard ceiling, as well as the opening of the seams in the ceiling to the width of one and one fourth inches, it was feared that the ship was about to be seriously endangered, and orders were accordingly given to lower the starboard boats, and haul them away from the ship to a safe position on the ice floe. This was done quietly and without confusion. The ice, in coming in on the port side, also had a movement toward the stern, and this last movement not only raised her port bow, but buried the starboard quarter, and jamming it and the stern against the heavy ice, effectually prevented the ship rising to pressure. Mr. Melville, while below in the engine-room, saw a break across the ship in the wake of the boilers and engines, showing that so solidly were the stern and starboard quarters held by the ice that the ship was breaking in two from the pressure upward exerted on the port bow of the ship. The starboard side of the ship was also evidently broken in, because water was rising rapidly in the starboard coal bunkers. Orders were now given to land one half of the pemmican in the deck-house, and all the bread which was on deck, and the sleds and dogs were likewise carried to a position of safety. At 4.30 there was a lull in the pressure, and it was assumed for the moment that the ice had united under the ship, and being as close together as it could come would occasion us no further injury, and that we might be able to take care of the ship yet. The ship was heeled 22° to starboard, and was raised forward 4' 6", the entire port bow being visible also to a height of 4' 6" from the forefoot. (In the early morning we had been able to see through the water down alongside the stem on the starboard side, and we could see that the forefoot was bent to starboard about a foot. This would indicate that the pressure received on the 19th January, 1880, was from port to starboard, instead of the other way, as we then supposed.) But at five p.m. the pressure was renewed and continued with tremendous force, the ship cracking in every part. The spar deck commenced to buckle up, and the starboard side seemed again on the point of coming in. Orders were now given to get out provisions, clothing, bedding, ship's books, and papers, and to remove all sick to a place of safety. While engaged in this work another tremendous pressure was received, and at six p.m. it was found that the ship was beginning to fill. From that time forward every effort was devoted to getting provisions, etc., on the ice, and it was not desisted from until the water had risen to the spar deck, the ship being heeled to starboard about 30°. The entire starboard side of the spar deck was submerged, the rail being under water, and the water-line reaching to the hatch-coamings. The starboard side was evidently broken in abreast of the mainmast, and the ship was settling fast. Our ensign had been hoisted at the mizzen, and every preparation made for abandoning, and at eight p. m. everybody was ordered to leave the ship.



13 June 1881


12 June 1881



Captain’s Journal (vol. 2 p. 578):

At one a.m. were turned out by the ice opening in the midst of our camp. Transported all our gear and belongings to a place of safety, and again piped down at two a.m., leaving a man on watch. At one a.m. the mizzen mast went by the board, and the ship was so far heeled over that the lower yard-arms were resting on the ice.

At three a.m. the ship had sunk until her smoke-pipe top was nearly awash.

At four a.m. the Jeannette went down. First righting to an even keel, she slowly sunk. The maintop-mast fell by the board to starboard, then the foretop-mast — and finally the mainmast, near the main truss — when she finally sank; the foremast was all that was standing.



Editor's note: Volume 2 goes on at length to journal the crew’s experiences on land after the sinking of the Jeannette until the survivors were found and rescued, with several appendices. De Long's private journal Volumes 1 & 2 were edited and published by his wife, Emma De Long, as “The voyage of the Jeannette. The ship and ice journals of George W. De Long, lieutenant-commander U.S.N. and commander of the Polar expedition of 1879-1881” (pub. 1884). Quotes from the journal in this transcription are from this online illustrated edition:

https://archive.org/details/voyageofjeannett001delo

https://archive.org/details/voyageofjeannett02delo