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Wellman’s 1906 polar expedition: the subject of numerous newspaper stories and one obscure film


Jan Anders Diesen, Faculty of Television Production and Film Studies, Lillehammer University College, NO-2626 Lillehammer, Norway. Email:


The following contribution, by film researchers Jan Anders Diesen and Neil Fulton, is the second piece about Walter Wellman in this issue. Whereas Capelotti et al. (this issue) focus on technical aspects of Wellman’s aborted bid for the North Pole in 1906, Diesen and Fulton look at the media hype surrounding the event. They also describe an obscure short film that includes scenes of Wellman in Svalbard in 1906. Although Wellman’s credentials as a polar explorer can be questioned, there is no doubt that he excelled at publicizing his ambitious schemes to the world.

—The editor