Fram Expeditions

The Expedition to the North Pole
In order to start the drift near the area where the Jeannette was wrecked, the Fram was sailed through the Northeast Passage and entered the drift ice on 25 September 1893 at 77°44’N. The rudder and propeller were raised, the sails stowed away and a windmill was erected to provide electric light. Doghouses were made first on deck, later on the ice. Routines were established for daily life and for all the scientific observations and measurements. The drift northwest went very slowly due to the northerly wind, causing huge frustration for Nansen. At one time it looked as though the expedition would take eight years.Was his theory wrong? Only once was the ship threatened: 5 January 1895 the ice pressure increased and pushed huge blocks up the ship’s side and on to the deck. After a short evacuation on to the ice, the men returned to the ship.The Fram drifted to a record 85°57’N at the end of November 1895. Otto Sverdrup captained the Fram after Nansen left in March 1895 and brought her out of the ice near Svalbard 14 August 1896. They reached Skjervøy 20 August, only a week after Nansen and Johansen had reached Norway.

The second Fram Expedition
Unlike Fridtjof Nansen, Otto Sverdrup was not so interested in scientific work on his expedition with the Fram 1898-1902. However, there was planned to be extensive scientific work on board and this time it was not as difficult as on the first Fram expedition to get scientists to join. In addition to Sverdrup, there were 15 men onboard. Five of these were scientists, including the doctor, and the remainder were officers and crew. Of the scientists one was Swedish and one Danish. Unfortunately two men died during the expedition, the doctor Johan Svendsen and the stoker Ove Braskerud.

Source: Onsite informationboard