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Polar Pictures: further information

Polar Pictures: further information


1. Expedition searching

This is straightforward but works best when you know both expedition leader and the date the expedition set out, e.g. for the first Antarctic expedition of Robert Falcon Scott, enter 'Scott' and '1901' (in any order) in the 'Expedition' box. If you only know the expedition leader, just enter this, e.g. 'Scott'. In this case, you will also retrieve references for Scott's second expedition. If you want information about all expeditions setting out in 1901, just enter '1901'. This will retrieve records on the Drygalski (1901-03), Scott (1901-04), and Nordenskjold (1901-04) expeditions.

Tip: If you know the expedition leader but not the date, enter the leader's name in the Expeditions box. Search and display. When you find a record for your expedition, note down the date given in the Keywords field and do a new search using this information. If you know neither leader nor date, enter whatever you do know in the general search box. Search and display. When you find a relevant record, obtain this information from the Keywords field and search again.

2. Making full use of the Search Boxes

The Searches Boxes are designed to help you to refine your searches.
They are not difficult to use. Here are some examples:

For photographs of the party left on Elephant Island during Shackleton's Endurance Expedition, 1914-16:
In the Expeditions box, enter 'Shackleton' and '1914'. In the Place box, scroll down to 'South Shetland Islands' and select. Now press 'Search'.

For photographs of specific individuals, enter 'portrait' in the uppermost search box together with the individual's name in the fullest form you know, i.e. 'Robert Falcon Scott' rather than just 'Scott' and 'Ernest Henry Shackleton' rather than just 'Shackleton'. If you enter just 'Scott' or 'Shackleton' and 'portrait', you will eventually find a suitable photograph but it may take time since you will also retrieve portraits of all other members of these expeditions!
Entering full names is particularly important for expedition leaders.

For illustrations of ships used on the British Graham Land Expedition (1934-37), led by John Rymill:
Enter 'vessels' in the uppermost search box. Select 'Rymill' and '1934' in the Expeditions box. Now press 'Search'.

Tip: Use the boxes to tailor the records displayed to your exact requirements.

4. Relevance Marking - How to select and add the most useful search terms

How can you be sure that you always use the best terms to find what you are looking for? Polar Pictures's search software can help you here. Use the checkbox by each publication to mark as relevant all those in which you are interested. Muscat will now automatically reorder your search results taking into account any additional terms used in indexing these publications. For still greater precision, use the 'Expand' function. Selecting this will display these additional terms and you can select those which are most useful.

Tip: Relevance marking is most useful where choice of search terms is particularly difficult.


In addition to Polar Pictures, a number of subsets of the Library's bibliographic database SPRILIB have been made available on the Internet. These are SPRILIB Antarctica, SPRILIB Ice and Snow and SPRILIB Russian North.

If you have any queries or comments, please contact the Librarian.

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