Science: In the North

Amundsen. Washed, shaven, rested, rid of his heavy Arctic furs, bareheaded. Explorer Roald Amundsen paced the bridge of the collier Albr. W. Selmer. At the ship's bows, a grinding noise. Up came the anchor, off went a thunderous salute from the Norwegian Government steamer Heimdal near by. Spectators ashore raised their voices in the Norwegian national anthem and the Albr. W. Selmer puffed laboriously out of Kings Bay, Spitsbergen (Norwegian possession), bound for Horten, Norway, about 1,500 miles northeast of there.

Knowing well that his time would be much occupied when he...