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Stromness Whaling Station, South Georgia

Stromness Bay is on the north coast of South Georgia - 54° 09' S, 36 41' W . It is named after the Orkney town of the same name by the whalers who first used the place. It is the place where Ernest Shackleton finally reached help in 1916 after the Endurance sank in the Weddell Sea. Help was given by the Norwegian whaling station manager.

Whaling activities began at Stromness in 1907 when the bay was first used as an anchorage for a floating factory ship. A shore station was built in 1912 and was run as a whaling station until 1931 when it was run as a ship repair yard until 1961 when it was abandoned.

Today the buildings, machinery and other paraphernalia of whaling and the ship yard lay around in various states of decay. In recent years an attempt has been made to repair the "Villa" where the station manager lived, though calling the building a villa is more of a relative description than absolute.

 

These are pictures from a trip to Antarctica in the summer of 2010 - 2011 for the purpose of researching former whaling stations and companies by Ulf Gustafsson of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands.

Pictures copyright Ulf Gustafsson.

   

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