Arctic exploration

Author Alec Wilkinson Explores Arctic Adventures

Lee Polevoi

Swedish engineer Salomon August Andrée and two compatriots set out in 1897 to fly to the North Pole via a hydrogen balloon. The plan was to begin the trip as close to 90 degrees north as possible, so the balloon would sail over the pole and come to a landing in Alaska. This breathtaking (and wholly unprecedented) expedition caught the attention of the world, but after the balloon lifted off an island in the Svalbard archipelago, it and the men aboard were never seen again.

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