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Koettlitz, Reginald

Koettlitz, Reginald

Alias: None

Dates: 1861-1916

Nationality: Unknown

Awards: Polar Medal (silver)

Reginald Koettlitz was born on 23 December 1861. Of German extraction, he trained at Guy's Hospital and went into practice as a physician in Dover. In 1894, he volunteered as surgeon for the Jackson-Harmsworth Arctic Expedition, 1894 - 1897 (leader Frederick George Jackson) to Franz Josef Land and spent nearly three years north of the Arctic Circle. Sledging expeditions were undertaken and a famous meeting took place with the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen on 17 June 1896.
His experience gained him a place on the British National Antarctic Expedition, 1901 - 1904 (leader Robert Falcon Scott), where he doubled the role of senior surgeon with that of bacteriologist. He took part in several sledging expeditions, including an attempt to reach Cape Crozier in March 1902. After the expedition, he returned to his practice in Dover but failed to settle down, and in 1911 emigrated to South Africa. This proved a failure and he and his wife died of influenza within a few days of each other at Port Elizabeth in 1916.

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