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Admiral Robert E. Peary: The Man and His Island

Robert Peary self-portrait c. 1909

Maine Public TV Air Times:
Thur., April 9 at 9:00 pm
Sat., April 11 at 2:00 pm

The life of Admiral Robert E. Peary and his life-long dream of being the first to reach the North Pole, plus his love affair with his summer home on Eagle Island.

Admiral Peary was born in Cresson, PA in 1855. His father died when he was three years old and he and his mother moved to Cape Elizabeth, Maine. He attended Portland High School and in 1877 graduated from Bowdoin College with a degree in Engineering. After graduation he set up shop in Freyburg, Maine as a surveyor. Eventually he took a job in Washington D.C. as a draftsman and later joined the US Navy Civil Engineering Corps as a Lt. He led a team that surveyed an alternate canal route across Nicaragua, but continued to dream about Arctic exploration. He obtained a leave of absence from the Navy several times, to pursue his dream in the arctic. After seven expeditions, Peary’s dream was realized on April 6, 1909 when he, Mathew Henson and some Intuits — after traveling more than 400 miles over treacherous Arctic ice, finally reached the Pole.

Produced by The Friends of Eagle Island.