In May 1845, Sir John Franklin set sail from Britain in command of the most ambitious Northwest Passage expedition ever initiated by the Royal Navy. The expedition’s two ships and 129 men never returned. Now, 173 years later, the Canadian Museum of History invites visitors to explore one of history’s most enduring mysteries in the new exhibition, Death in the Ice – The Mystery of the Franklin Expedition, presented until September 30, 2018.
Through historical artifacts and Inuit oral histories, Death in the Ice provides the most comprehensive account to date of Franklin’s final voyage, and brings together more than 200 objects among others from the collections of the Canadian Museum of History and the National Maritime Museum in Britain. For the first time, iconic objects recovered in the decades following the Franklin Expedition are displayed alongside new information and other objects brought to light as a result of an ongoing collaboration between Parks Canada and the Government of Nunavut. This partnership contributed to the recent discovery of the Expedition’s two ships: HMS Erebus in 2014 and HMS Terror in 2016. The exhibition includes the famous Victory Point Note, the only firsthand account of the Expedition’s desertion of HMS Erebus and Terror. In addition, the exhibition highlights an array of Inuit artifacts and interviews, which introduce visitors to the critical role Inuit continue to play in solving the Franklin mystery. historymuseum.ca