Norwegian, Roald Amundsen, making the
first complete voyage of the passage in a little forty seven
ton herring sloop, the Gjoa (from the Gary MacMahon
The Search for a Northwest Passage
Since the fifteenth century, starting with John Cabot and
continuing with Martin Frobisher, navigators have searched for
a route to the Pacific from Atlantic. A shorter route that
also avoided rounding Cape Horn was sought. Subsequent
explorers whose names adorn the maps of North America and
Canada also search in vain for the elusive passage.
Men like John Davis, Henry Hudson, William Buffin and
Samuel Hearne explored the Canadian Arctic but found no route.
With the end of the Napoleonic Wars in 1815, the Admiralty, in
an attempt to secure its naval superiority and seek commercial
advantage, began what became a half-century of tireless
endeavour to discover the Northwest Passage.
Metal Boat Construction