$15.00 (E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to request special autographed personalizations in book.) 64 pages, 8 x 10 inches, soft cover
From the back cover:
SOUTHWARD BOUND Journey to the Bottom of the World
In 1913, British newspapers published the following advertisement at the request of Sir Ernest Shackleton, who was organizing an expedition to Antarctica:
"Men wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages. Bitter cold. Long months of complete darkness. Constant danger. Safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition in case of success."
Almost 5,000 men replied to the ad - and to the opportunity to be among the first to cross the Antarctic continent - including surgeons, engineers, meteorologists, physicists and geologists.
Shackleton chose 26 men, each according to his degree of strength, patience and, most importantly, optimism. Shackleton believed the mindset of an individual superseded every other quality he possessed, including his intelligence, experience and physical condition.
The ship, Endurance, became trapped in the rapidly forming winter ice, 100 miles off the coast of Antarctica. The crew, stranded 11,000 miles from home, waited for the spring thaw through nine long months of blizzards, gales and temperatures nearing 100 degrees below zero. They were alone at the end of the earth. With food scarce, the men watched in horror as their ship finally succumbed to the pressure of the frozen ocean, breaking to rubble before sinking to the bottom of the sea.
Their only hope of survival was to travel by foot across hundreds of miles of broken and jagged ice in search of open waters, wary of the killer whales that could nose up through the ice and swallow a man with ease. Realizing that hope of rescue was impossible, Shackleton took five volunteers and sailed the largest of the three lifeboats (salvaged from the wrecked ship) through the most treacherous waters in the world, to the nearest inhabited island, home only to a small whaling station, 800 miles away. Once on shore, Shackleton and his men then traversed an uncharted mountain range - "The Alps of the Southern Ocean" - in order to finally reach the whaling camp, and rescue. It would take months of battling the seas to bring the remainder of his crew to safety.
Nearly two years were spent on ice and ocean, and the journey was recognized as "the greatest survival story of all time." Endurance was more than the name of the ship, it was the Shackleton family motto: "By endurance we conquer." Everyone aboard the vessel journeying southward with Shackleton had to believe these words were true, for the southern seas would show them no mercy.