With food and equipment for 3 years stuffed into every available space, the Southern Cross left London in August 1898. A huge crowd cheered the men on their way, while the dogs howled back from the deck.
The ship travelled south for the remainder of the year, stopping in Hobart for final provisioning. In December, the expedition departed the Hobart docks, saying farewell to the comforts of everyday life.
The Southern Cross departed with over 500 Union Jack flags on board. They proved useful on celebration days like New Year.
This wind-battered example is the only one that survives at Cape Adare
English publishing magnate Sir George Newnes funded the expedition. He had his eye on the story sales that would result from the daring exploits. Newnes’ investment was £35,000, a staggering NZ$7.6 million today.