Ernest Shackleton and dignitaries at Punta Arenas. Photograph by Frank Hurley (S0015602)
"My grandfather - William Mann Somerville - bank manager at Punta Arenas led the committee which raised the money for the rescue of Shackleton's crew. The money they put to the rescue fund had been originally acquired to buy an aeroplane for the use of the air force in the UK at the time of the First World War, but in the end all this money went to Shackleton.
I believe - though I have no proof as such - that he also stayed at my grandparents house and on leaving for the rescue he gave my father (aged about one year) a teddy bear. This bear is still in the family possessions of my aunt's family in Santiago de Chile."
With the help of the Chilean Government Shackleton organised two rescue attempts from Punta Arenas, Chile, for the relief of the men stranded on Elephant Island from. The second, on a small steam tug, named Yelcho, was successful, reaching Elephant Island on 30 August 1916.
Information kindly supplied by Lois Monica Mackay.
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