Sledge flag with anchor design and embroidered 'Hope On' 'Hope Ever'
A sledge flag embroidered with Sir John Barrow's motto ‘HOPE ON HOPE EVER’ made by Lady Jane Franklin for Lieutenant Bedford Clapperton Tryvillion Pim (1826-86). It was flown from HM sledge 'John Barrow' commanded by Pim when he made contact with the crew of 'Investigator' on 6 April 1853.
The flag is made of dark blue ribbed silk with an anchor and motto appliquéd in yellow felt— the details are picked out in gold coloured silk. It has been framed.
‘Investigator’ commanded by Robert McClure was beset in the ice north of Banks Island, having entered the North West Passage from the Pacific. After three winters in the Arctic her crew were starving and suffering from scurvy. The arrival of Pim heralded their eventual rescue. He had been sent in charge of a sledge party from HMS ‘Resolute’ following the recovery of a message from the trapped McClure. This was the first meeting of expeditions entering the North West Passage from opposite ends. Both vessels had been sent to the Arctic to search for the missing ships of Sir John Franklin’s expedition, 'Investigator' in company with Collinson's 'Enterprise' (although the two ships had become separated); ‘Resolute’ as part of a larger squadron under the overall command of Captain Sir Edward Belcher.
The flag is illustrated in the table of sledge flags shown in ‘Further Papers relative to the recent arctic expeditions in search of Sir John Franklin and the crews of HMS Erebus and Terror’ (London, 1855) p. 954. The flag also shown on the map opposite p. 680, this time in use by the sledge ‘Murchison’ also commanded by Pim.
Object number: AAA0834
Original dimensions: 609.6 mm x 939.8 mm
- Image reference: S0362
- National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
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