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Captain Joe's Final Progress Report

Captain Joe's Final Progress Report

Captain Joe wrote, on 21 Aug 1998:

Although we had some delays with the finishing of the Shackleton Memorial Library, we are close enough to it that I can report "mission accomplished". All of the activities predicted in the 5th Progress Report have now been accomplished. These include completion of all of the Library decks, moving of books into these areas, completion of study areas, installation of the glass doors into the Shackleton Memorial Library, and much finish work.

So what remains to be done? The rotunda decking is not yet complete, and the shelves that fit around the circumference of the structure are installed but lack shelves. Thus, the books that will live there remain in temporary storage until early next month. Similarly, the basement is in the final stages of completion, and the maps and charts will be moved into the new basement at the same time as the books into the rotunda. However, the library is fully functional with most materials in their new locations.

The external works, or garden, in front of the rotunda, is under construction, and the Haymills extra materials and equipment are slowly moving off the site.

There is still a great deal of squaring away, correcting of small deficiencies (called a snagging list here, and a punchlist in America), cleaning and proper stowing and restowing going on all over the complex. There is still a little work to be done to install the new lighting in the foyer. However, all of our friends, shipmates, researchers, Visiting Scholars, and visitors who come to use the Library will find it ready. The Museum is still not open, but the Curator is busy getting ready for the official opening in November.

The Friends of SPRI - I know many of you will want to know more about this - contributed the glass doors leading into the Shackleton Memorial Library. These doors have profiles of Sir Ernest and Lord Edward facing each other in etchings in the glass. Over the doors is a 3-part stone, with SHACKLETON MEMORIAL LIBRARY engraved therein, and then highlighted in gold leaf. It is all very beautiful, and is a real tribute to the Shackletons father and son, in the Institute which is a tribute to Captain Robert Scott and his companions.

So Mary and I go back to America in a few days, our mission completed. We intended to stay a year, and ended up staying three. And we will return in November for the opening. If anyone wants to communicate about the Institute and especially the Library, there are plenty of e-mail addresses on this website. Especially for the Americans, I will be happy to answer any questions or comments you may have.

Written at 1 bell of the first dog watch on 21 August and signed by
Captain Joe