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xi

PREFACE

staying at home; and still not a good one, for he who
loves his work, and the field of his work, should not re-
tire till he has become useless. But there were good rea-
sons. If I succeeded in getting government or influen-
tial private backing, I wanted to be south to organize a
comprehensive arctic expedition, or series of expeditions.
But whether I succeeded or failed in that, I wanted to
remain south to continue my campaign of education with
regard to the arctic regions. I wanted especially to try
to reform the arctic sections of the geography textbooks
and in general to influence school and college teaching.
This seemed to me not only a duty to science but also
particularly my duty toward my native land, Canada,
whose future depends so much on what the arctic portions
of her territory are worth, and on how soon their real
nature can be understood and taken advantage of.

If I were to write here all my reasons for not going
North in 1921, this introduction would turn into a pro-
spectus of my hopes and plans for the rest of my life.
That would not interest the reader. What I have said,
when coupled with the narrative of the book, will surely
make it clear enough why I stayed when my associates
sailed away.

And who could be better qualified for going North than
the four young men who went? Galle was only nineteen,
it is true, but if you had seen him you would not have
thought him too young. At seventeen, Martin Kilian of
my 1913-18 expedition had proved himself one of our
good men; Peary had found Borup at twenty-three one
of the best men he ever had.

Crawford at twenty seems a little young only because he was
to be called commander. But history is full of commanders and great
leaders of various sorts who were at that age or near it. Alexander
Hamilton
was nineteen when he became one of the prime movers in the
American Revolution. That was no mere flash in the pan due to accident,
for the more his work is studied by historians the more his stature grow.
in comparison with that of his colleagues and contemporaries. Alexander
the Great
was twenty when he took command of the armies and began his
conquest of the ancient world. Lesser but famous captains in the armies,
of nearly every country have been young men. (Continue ¶)

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