The Arctic Regions

The Arctic Regions

William Bradford

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Co-published with the Wilson Centre for Photography, this album, the first to capture the splendour of the Arctic through photography, was compiled following an 'art expedition' to Greenland in 1869 led by American painter and explorer, William Bradford.

The first volume of the ebook, The Arctic Regions – The Photographs displays the majestic 141 albumen prints that were captured during the expedition. Bradford led the expedition, taking with him two professional photographers, John L. Dunmore and George Critcherson, who were hired to document the voyage; while Bradford captured the scenery in pencil and oil impressions, his photographers were directed to record the landscape using their cameras. 

The second volume of the ebook The Arctic Regions – Digital Facsimile presents the original travelogue photographed page by page; it was originally printed in 1873, published in elephant folio with a limited run of no more than 300 copies – making the book extremely rare. Mounted photographs portray scenes from Arctic Greenland and North America, and Bradford's text, typical of the expeditionary narratives of the period, combines scientific observation with romantic hyperbole. 

It is the photographs that distinguish this book from the others of the period; the images are testament to the other worldly nature of the Arctic's frozen seas – an idea that had captured the Victorian imagination.