BRITISH ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION 1910-1913 A collection of ephemera relating to Herbert George Ponting, comprising an Emerson medal for photography, silver-backed brushes and correspondence with the Royal Household, c.1910-1929

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Lot 145
BRITISH ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION 1910-1913
A collection of ephemera relating to Herbert George Ponting, comprising an Emerson medal for photography, silver-backed brushes and correspondence with the Royal Household, c.1910-1929

Sold for £ 2,125 (US$ 2,661) inc. premium
BRITISH ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION 1910-1913
A collection of ephemera relating to Herbert George Ponting, comprising: Peter Henry Emerson 'Silver' medal by J. Havard Thomas, showing Emerson in profile, with coat of arms and inscription 'Ad Arpes Excolendas' on reverse, in fitted case; a pair of silver-mounted oval hair-brushes, Mappin & Webb, London, 1913, monogrammed 'HGP', 132mm. long; a silver ovoid hip flask with screw cap and detachable parcel-gilt cup, flask bearing makers mark 'J.L', Birmingham, 1875 and monogram 'A.W.', cup maker's mark 'L.G.', Birmingham, date indistinct, 150mm. high; and a collection of some fifty items of correspondence to and from various members of the Royal Household, and some printed ephemera, including file-copies of Ponting's typed letters and letters sent on behalf of the Royal family, mostly thanks and acknowledgements, others making arrangements to give lectures, including a 3-page programme from Buckingham Palace entitled 'With Captain Scott in the Antarctic/Mr. Herbert G. Ponting/will present his/animated photographic record/of/Captain Scott's South Pole Expedition/and relate the story of the pictures/Tuesday/May 12th 1914', c.1910-1929

Footnotes

  • SCOTT'S 'CAMERA ARTIST'S' COMMAND PERFORMANCE

    Ponting was the first professional photographer and film-maker to accompany an expedition to the Antarctic. On his return he lectured extensively in London on the ill-fated Scott expedition and wrote reluctantly that "the outbreak of the Great War ended what had been a highly successful beginning to a novel feature in the entertainment world". In his account of the ill-fated Scott expedition The Great White South, published in 1921, he writes "I had the honour to receive the Royal Command to show my kinematograph record, and tell the story of the Scott Expedition at Buckingham Palace, before Their Majesties the King and Queen, the Royal Family, the King and Queen of Denmark, and several hundred guests". The present correspondence reveals that Ponting was presented with a scarf pin by the King in thanks and in return Ponting presented the King with a portfolio of photographic prints and subsequently copies of his books, although it was noted that "His Majesty prefers to receive books in the same form in which they are issued to the public and not specially bound" and that he shouldn't send films to Balmoral as, contrary to rumour, they don't have the equipment to play them.

    Ponting's Emerson Medal is one of only 57 awarded to photographers who had gained the admiration of P. H. Emerson, the well-known photographer of the life and landscape of the Norfolk Broads. He began awarding these in 1925 and Ponting thereby joined the illustrious ranks of Julia Margaret Cameron, Hippolyte Bayard, Alfred Stieglitz and Nadar.

    Provenance: Thomas Baker McLeroth, Ponting's executor, and by descent.
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