Icebreaking: The Way Through the Bay


Click the image for a larger view.

Contour of Shelf Ice, Kainan Bay
Robert Charles Haun #64
Watercolor & pencil on paper, 27 January 1956

Sketch from the port side of U.S.S. Nespelen.


Ross Ice Shelf Looking Towards
Little America V After Bay Ice Breakup

Robert Charles Haun #13
Oil on canvas, 1956



U.S.S. Arneb (AKA-56) at
Kainan, Bay Antarctica

Robert Charles Haun #69
Watercolor & ink on paper, 1956



Goodwill Ambassadors Greet U.S.S. Arneb
Robert Charles Haun #1
Oil on canvas, 1956

These Adelie penguins look as if they are rushing out to greet the Navy ship. One of only two species restricted to Antarctica (the other species is the Emperor), the Adelie penguins range from eighteen to twenty-four inches high. The penguin became one of the symbols of Operation Deep Freeze I.

The men in the painting are laying the "deadmen." A "deadman" is a large, thick piece of timber placed into a hole dug into an ice shelf far inland. It is buried under layers of snow and then water is poured over it, freezing it firmly into the sea ice. A mooring line, or steel cable, is fastened around it, attaching it to the ship. This line holds tight but also may be released instantly should an ice alert or blizzard warning be sounded.


Laying the "Dead Men" - Greeted by Penguins
Robert Charles Haun #66
Watercolor on paper, 1956

Study for 88-192-A (above).



Ice Mooring
Standish Backus #43
Watercolor on scratch board, 1956

"The approved method of fastening a ship to the Antarctic Continent is to moor it to a 'deadman' buried in the ice. Symbolically, [the mooring line] might represent man's tenuous and probably temporary hold on Antarctica." --Commander Standish Backus



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