National Geographic : 1927 Jan
Photograph from J.P.Ault THE FIRST SOUTH POLAR LAND KNOWN TO MAN South Georgia was rediscovered by Captain Cook in 1775, and it was at Grytviken, King Edward Cove,here shown, that Sir Ernest Shackleton died. After gazing upon these bleak and desolate mountains, Cook sailed away with the comment that he did not believe anyone would ever bebenefited by the island's discovery. That did not deter him from noting, with his usual thoroughness, the seals, whichhecalled "sea-bears"; seaelephants, penguins, and also the albatrosses, terns, gulls, and other birds that circled over the surrounding waters. He even described the titlark (Anthus antarcticus), the one land bird peculiar to the island. Whales off South Georgia's shores provided glycerin for explosivesalong the Western Front during the World War (see text, page 125).