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Dundee, City of Discovery, is known around the world for its innovation, its jute and music, and its vibrant culture. But the critical role of the city's whaling fleet and the wealth it generated for Dundee for more than a century is less well known. Ancestors in the Arctic is a remarkable collection of photographs from the McManus: Dundee's Art Gallery and Museum, and tells the story of Dundee whaling and the men who sailed the frozen Arctic seas. This was a brutal, dangerous business which required the hardiest of men, prepared to head out to sea in all weathers and in terrible conditions in search of the elusive mammal and in the hope of a profit from whalebone, skins and the whale oil which was essential for the city's jute mills and factories. And as they sailed the dangerous Arctic waters, the ship's captains became well known - including Captain William Adams, who sailed farther north than any other Dundee whaling master and Captain Harry MacKay of Terra Nova and rescuer of the trapped Discovery in 1903. More numerous were the crewmen, the hardworking Dundonians who rowed the whaleboats and manned the ships, and many of whose descendants still live in Dundee. Ancestors in the Arctic tells their remarkable stories as they sailed north, traded with the Inuit and hunted whales across forbidding freezing seas.
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