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Description found in Archives
File consists of
Place of creation
Image: 21.000 x 13.000 cm (66 folios in a small bound volume consisting o)
Language of material
Scope and content
The first of two sketchbooks documenting R.N. Captain John Franklin's second overland expedition to the Canadian Arctic. As the expedition moved from New York state in March 1825 to its winter base at Fort Franklin on Great Bear Lake, along the routes of fur traders, a journey chronicled by this sketchbook, George Back took every opportunity to make pencil sketches of memorable views and events. After reaching Fort Franklin on August 11, 1825, Back used the next ten months to watercolour the sketches he had made en route. He also painted a number of portraits and views in and around Fort Franklin. Just three days before the expedition set out on the second stage of the journey to the Arctic coast, Back evidently completed this sketchbook, inscribing the title page with the date "June 21st, 1826". In conjunction with the sketchbook, Back also maintained a daily journal, rough and fair copies of which are now on deposit at the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, England. Copies of these journals are available under certain restrictions on LAC microfilm (A-820 and A-821, respectively). Four views from this sketchbook, including the two masterpieces "Portage La Lache between Lake La Loche and the Clearwater River, July 16, 1825" and "Winter View of Fort Franklin from the Little Lake" done in the winter of 1825-1826, were selected for illustration in Franklin's "Narrative of a Second Expedition...." published in London by John Murray, 1828. This is one of five separate sketchbooks owned by Library and Archives Canada done by George Back during various Arctic explorations (two sketchbooks from the 1819-1822 expedition; two sketchbooks from the 1825-1827 expedition, and one sketchbook from the 1833-1835 expedition). LAC also owns single-sheet watercolours from various sources, as well as many single-sheet prints.
Conditions of access
Sketchbook cannot be viewed without the
individual assistance of an art archivist or the art custodian.
Creator / Provenance
1. HISTORICAL EVENTS - 1825-1827.
2. Discovery and Exploration - 1825-1827.
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