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McNeish's account of abandoning ship...

Harry McNeish Journal, October 27, 1915


We have left the ship this afternoon as she is going to pieces fast the stern post broke this evening & then the keel was torn out of her then she filled rapidly.


We have passed our first night on the floe & we had to shift our camp about 1 am this morning as the ice split about 1 yard from our tent I am in a tent with with Mr Wild Dr McIlroy & Mr Wordie it is Thursday night [28th] now & we have shifted our camp 3 times we got a seal today I am busy getting the two boats fixed on sledges we have all been fitted out with a new rig out of warm clothing & 1 pound of tobaco & sleeping bags there was only 18 skin bags & we cast lots for them & I was lucky for the first time in my life for I drew one.


NOTE: Shackleton and some of the senior officers arranged for the reindeer skin sleeping bags - perceived as the better, warmer sleeping bags - to go to the crew members. The rest made do with Jaeger woolen sleeping bags and they were also provided with floorcloths to prevent the melting snow from seeping through.



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