"...I hope this may reach you - I fear we must go and that it leaves the Expedition in a bad muddle - But we have been to the Pole and we shall die like gentlemen - I regret only for the women we leave behind... If this diary is found it will show how we stuck by dying companions and fought this thing out well to the end. I think this will show that the spirit of pluck and the power to endure has not passed out of the race - If recognition of this fact can be given by people will you please do your best to have our people looked after, those dependent on us. I have my wife and child to think of... I am sure you will do your best to see this provision made... Wilson, the best fellow that ever stepped, who has sacrificed himself again and again to the sick men of the party, leaves a widow entirely destitute. Surely something ought to be done for her and for the humble widow of Edgar Evans... We very nearly came through and it's a pity to have missed it, but lately I have felt that we have overshot the mark - no one else is to blame and I hope not attempt will be made to suggest that we lacked support..."
Explorers, adventurers, scientists and armchair travelers have spent countless hours examining arguing, and dissecting Robert Falcon Scott's final Antarctic expedition. Today, based upon the last date in his diary and final letters, is believed to be the centenary of his death.
The letter above was found on Scott's body and was meant for Sir Edgar Speyer's the expedition's treasurer, and is for sale.
Tomorrow, at 2 pm London time Bonhams Auction House is holding a Polar sale, filled with items that belonged, accompanied or told the story of, most of the earliest polar expeditions. Scott's final farewell is the star attraction. Telephone action most certainly welcome.