Date of Completion


Document Type

Honors College Thesis



Thesis Type

Honors College, College of Arts and Science Honors

First Advisor

David Massell


Arctic, Press, Greely Expedition, Newspapers


On the morning of August 12, 1884, readers of the Evening Bulletin from San Francisco were greeted with the sensational title: “A Terrible Story: Charges of Cannibalism Against the Greely Arctic Explorers.”[1] Meanwhile, in West Virginia, the Wheeling Register produced an even more sensational title the next day, “Torn from Arctic Graves. A Horrible Story of Cannibalism. Can these Things be True?”[2] In the Northeast, TheNew Haven Evening Registerprinted its own article titled: “The Greely Sensation: The Government Officials Very Reticent Regarding Alleged Cannibalism.”[3] It would appear that a wave of sensation was crossing the nation as papers printed similar stories on the charges of cannibalism. These charges were the latest topic to become publicized by the press pertaining to the Greely Expedition to Lady Franklin Bay in the Arctic. The events and stories of the Greely Expedition unfolded between the pages of a newspaper for the American public. How the press represented the expedition to the American people clarifies our understanding of the press’s and the American public’s interest in arctic exploration in the late nineteenth century.

[1]Evening Bulletin, “A Terrible Story,” August 12, 1884

[2]Wheeling Register, “Torn from Arctic Graves,” August 13, 1884.

[3]The New Haven Evening Register, “The Greely Sensation,” August 13, 1884.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.