Sir John Franklin
KCH FRGS RN
|Lieutenant Governor of Van Diemen's Land|
5 January 1837 – 21 August 1843
|Preceded by||Sir George Arthur|
|Succeeded by||Sir John Eardley-Wilmot|
16 April 1786|
Spilsby, Lincolnshire, England
|Died||11 June 1847
in the sea near King William Island, Canada, aboard HMS Terror
|Spouse(s)||Eleanor Anne Porden
|Years of service||1800–1847|
|Battles/wars||French Revolutionary Wars
Rear-Admiral Sir John Franklin KCH FRGS RN (16 April 1786 – 11 June 1847) was a British Royal Navy officer and Arctic explorer. Franklin also served as governor of Tasmania for several years. He disappeared on his last expedition, attempting to chart and navigate a section of the Northwest Passage in the Canadian Arctic. The icebound ships were abandoned and the entire crew perished from starvation, hypothermia, tuberculosis, lead poisoning and scurvy.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Historical legacy
- 3 Works about John Franklin
- 4 References
- 5 Further reading
- 6 External links
Franklin was born in Spilsby, Lincolnshire, in 1786 and educated at King Edward VI Grammar School, Louth. He was the ninth of the twelve children of Willingham Franklin, the descendant of a long line of country gentlemen, and his wife Hannah Weekes. One of John's sisters, Sarah, was the mother of Emily Tennyson. Franklin's father initially opposed his son's interest in a career at sea. However, Franklin was determined and his father reluctantly allowed him to go on a trial voyage with a merchant ship. This hardened young Franklin's resolve, so at the age of 14 his father secured him a Royal Navy appointment on HMS Polyphemus.
Franklin was later present at a number of historic voyages and naval battles. These included the Battle of Copenhagen in 1801, an expedition to explore the coast of Australia on HMS Investigator with his uncle, Captain Matthew Flinders, a return to the Napoleonic Wars, serving aboard HMS Bellerophon at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, and he was at the Battle of New Orleans.
1819: Coppermine River
In 1819, Franklin was chosen to lead an expedition overland from Hudson Bay to chart the north coast of Canada eastwards from the mouth of the Coppermine River. On his 1819 expedition, Franklin fell into the Hayes River at Robinson Falls and was rescued by a member of his expedition about 90 metres (98 yd) downstream.
Between 1819 and 1822 he lost 11 of the 20 men in his party. Most died of starvation, but there were also at least one murder and suggestions of cannibalism. The survivors were forced to eat lichen and even attempted to eat their own leather boots. This gained Franklin the nickname of "the man who ate his boots".
1823: Marriage and third Arctic expedition
In 1823, after returning to England, Sir John Franklin married the poet Eleanor Anne Porden. Their daughter, Eleanor Isabella, was born the following year. Eleanor (senior) died of tuberculosis in 1825, shortly after persuading her husband not to let her ill-health prevent him from setting off on another expedition to the Arctic.
In 1825 he left for his second Canadian and third Arctic expedition. The goal this time was the mouth of the Mackenzie River from which he would follow the coast westward and possibly meet Frederick William Beechey who would try to sail northeast from the Bering Strait. With him was John Richardson who would follow the coast east from the Mackenzie to the mouth of the Coppermine River. At the same time William Edward Parry would try to sail west from the Atlantic. (Beechey reached Point Barrow and Parry became frozen in 900 miles east. At this time the only known points on the north coast were a hundred or so miles east from the Bering Strait, the mouth of the Mackenzie, Franklin's stretch east of the Coppermine, and a bit of the Gulf of Boothia which had been seen briefly from land.) Supplies were better organized this time, in part because they were managed by Peter Warren Dease of the Hudson's Bay Company.
After reaching the Great Slave Lake using the standard HBC route he took a reconnaissance trip 1,000 miles down the Mackenzie and on 16 August 1825 became the second European to reach its mouth. He erected a flagpole with buried letters for Parry. He returned to winter at Fort Franklin on the Great Bear Lake. Next summer he went downriver and found the ocean frozen. He worked his way west for several hundred miles and gave up on 16 August 1826 at Return Reef when he was about 150 miles east of Beechey's Point Barrow. He reached safety at Fort Franklin on 21 September. He left Fort Franklin on 20 February 1827 and spent the rest of the winter and spring at Fort Chipewyan, Alberta. He reached Liverpool on the first of September 1827. Richardson's eastward journey was more successful.
On 5 November 1828 he married Jane Griffin, a friend of his first wife and a seasoned traveller who proved indomitable in the course of their life together. On 29 April 1829 he was knighted by George IV. On 25 January 1836 he was made Knight Commander of the Royal Guelphic Order by King William IV. He was made a Knight of the Greek Order of the Redeemer as well.
1836: Lieutenant-Governor of Van Diemen's Land (Tasmania)
Franklin was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Van Diemen's Land in 1836, but was removed from office in 1843. He did not endear himself with the local civil servants, who particularly disliked his humane ideals and his attempts to reform the Tasmanian penal colony. His wife, Jane, was quite liberated for a woman of her day, known for "roughing it" to the extent that an expedition had to be mounted after she and Franklin were delayed in their crossing of Tasmanian south-west wilderness. Such exploits further distanced the couple from "proper" society, and may have contributed to Franklin's recall. Nevertheless, he was popular among the people of Tasmania.
He is remembered by a significant landmark in the centre of Hobart—a statue of him dominates the park known as Franklin Square, which was the site of the original Government House. On the plinth below the statue appears Tennyson's epitaph:
- Not here! The white north hath thy bones and thou
- Heroic sailor soul
- Art passing on thine happier voyage now
- Toward no earthly pole
His wife worked to set up a university, which was eventually established in 1890, a museum, credited to the Royal Society of Tasmanian in 1843 under the leadership of her husband. Lady Franklin may have worked to have the Lieutenant-Governor's private botanical gardens, established in 1818, managed as a public resource. Lady Franklin also established a glyptotek and surrounding lands to support it near Hobart; it was her intent to civilise the colony. The village of Franklin, on the Huon River, is named in his honour, as is the Franklin River on the West Coast of Tasmania, one of the better known Tasmanian rivers due to the Franklin Dam controversy.
1843: Visit to Victoria
Shortly after leaving his post as Governor of Tasmania Franklin revisited a cairn on Arthur's Seat, a small mountain just inside Port Phillip Bay, that he had visited as a midshipman with Captain Matthew Flinders in April 1802.
1845: Northwest Passage expedition
Exploration of the Arctic coastal mainland after Franklin's second Arctic expedition had left less than 500 kilometres (311 mi) of unexplored Arctic coastline. The British decided to send a well-equipped Arctic expedition to complete the charting of the Northwest Passage. After Sir James Ross declined an offer to command the expedition, an invitation was extended to Franklin, who accepted despite his age (59). A younger man, Captain James Fitzjames, was given command of HMS Erebus and Franklin was named the expedition commander. Captain Francis Rawdon Moira Crozier, who had commanded HMS Terror during the Ross 1841–44 Antarctic expedition, was appointed executive officer and commander of HMS Terror. Franklin was given command on 7 February 1845, and received official instructions on 5 May 1845.
HMS Erebus at 370 long tons (380 t) and HMS Terror at 340 long tons (350 t) were sturdily built and were outfitted with recent inventions. These included steam engines from the London and Greenwich Railway that enabled the ships to make 4 knots (7.4 km/h) on their own power, a unique combined steam-based heating and distillation system for the comfort of the crew and to provide large quantities of fresh water for the engine's boilers, a mechanism that enabled the iron rudder and propeller to be drawn into iron wells to protect them from damage, ships' libraries of more than 1,000 books, and three years' worth of conventionally preserved or tinned preserved food supplies. Unfortunately, the latter was supplied from a cut-rate provisioner who was awarded the contract only a few months before the ships were to sail.
Though his "patent process" was sound, the haste with which he had prepared thousands of cans of food led to sloppily-applied beads of solder on the cans' interior edges and allowed lead to leach into the food. Additionally, the water distillation system may have used lead piping and lead-soldered joints, which would have produced drinking water with a high lead content. Chosen by the Admiralty, most of the crew were Englishmen, many from the North of England with a small number of Irishmen and Scotsmen.
The Franklin Expedition set sail from Greenhithe, England, on 19 May 1845, with a crew of 24 officers and 110 men. The ships travelled north to Aberdeen and the Orkney Isles for supplies. From Scotland, the ships sailed to Greenland with HMS Rattler and a transport ship, Barretto Junior. After misjudging the location of Whitefish Bay, Disko Island, Greenland, the expedition backtracked and finally harboured in that far north outpost to prepare for the rest of their voyage. Five crew members were discharged and sent home on the Rattler and Barretto Junior, reducing the ships' final crew size to 129. The expedition was last seen by Europeans on 26 July 1845, when Captain Dannett of the whaler Prince of Wales encountered Terror and Erebus moored to an iceberg in Lancaster Sound.
It is now believed that the expedition wintered in 1845–46 on Beechey Island. Terror and Erebus became trapped in ice off King William Island in September 1846 and never sailed again. According to a note later found on that island, Franklin died there on 11 June 1847. To date, the exact location of his grave is unknown.
After two years and no word from the expedition, Franklin's wife urged the Admiralty to send a search party. Because the crew carried supplies for three years, the Admiralty waited another year before launching a search and offering a £20,000 reward for finding the expedition. The money and Franklin's fame led to many searches. At one point, ten British and two American ships, USS Advance and USS Rescue, headed for the Arctic. Eventually, more ships and men were lost looking for Franklin than in the expedition itself.
Ballads such as "Lady Franklin's Lament", commemorating Lady Franklin's search for her lost husband, became popular. In the summer of 1850, expeditions including three from England as well as one from the United States joined in the search. They converged off the east coast of Beechey Island, where the first relics of the Franklin expedition were found, including the gravesites of three Franklin Expedition crewmen.
In 1854, the Scottish explorer Dr. John Rae, while surveying the Boothia Peninsula for the Hudson's Bay Company, discovered the true fate of the Franklin party from talking to Inuit hunters. He was told both ships had become icebound, the men had tried to reach safety on foot but had succumbed to cold and some had resorted to cannibalism. Rae's report to the Admiralty was leaked to the press, which led to widespread revulsion in Victorian society, enraged Franklin's widow and condemned Rae to ignominy. Lady Franklin's efforts to eulogise her husband, with support from the British Establishment, led to a further 25 searches over the next four decades, none of which would add any further information of note.
In the mid-1980s, Owen Beattie, a University of Alberta professor of anthropology, began a 10-year series of scientific studies known as the "1845–48 Franklin Expedition Forensic Anthropology Project", showing that the Beechey Island crew had most likely died of pneumonia and perhaps tuberculosis. Toxicological reports indicated that lead poisoning was also a possible factor.
In 1997, more than 140 years after Dr. Rae's report, his account was finally vindicated; blade-cut marks on the bones of some of the crew found on King William Island strongly suggested that conditions had become so dire that some crew members resorted to cannibalism. It appeared from these studies that a combination of bad weather, years locked in ice, disease including scurvy, poisoned food, botulism and starvation had killed everyone in the Franklin party.
In October 2009 Robert Grenier (a Senior Marine Archaeologist at Parks Canada) outlined recent discoveries of sheet metal and copper which have been recovered from 19th century Inuit hunting sites. Grenier firmly believes these pieces of metal once belonged to the Terror and formed the protective plating of the ship's hull.
A quote from the British newspaper The Guardian states the following:
"After studying 19th-century Inuit oral testimony – which included eyewitness descriptions of starving, exhausted men staggering through the snow without condescending to ask local people how they survived in such a wilderness – he believes the 19th-century official accounts that all the surviving expedition members abandoned their ice-locked ships are wrong. He believes both ships drifted southwards, with at least two crew remaining until the final destruction of their vessels. One broke up, but Inuit hunters arriving at their summer hunting grounds reported discovering another ship floating in fresh ice in a cove.
"They're not very strong on location or date," Grenier said. "They have all the space and time in the world, but what they reported seems quite clear."
The ship, probably the Terror, was very neat and orderly, but the Inuit descended into the darkness of the hull with their seal-oil lamps, where they found a tall dead man in an inner cabin. Grenier believes it was there they recovered the copper, which was more valuable than gold to them, and tools including shears from the ship's workshop with which to work it. Hauntingly, they also reported that one of the masts was on fire. Grenier wonders if what they saw was the funnel from the galley still smoking from a meal cooked that morning, before the last of Franklin's men disappeared from history.
For years after the loss of the Franklin party, the Victorian era media portrayed Franklin as a hero who led his men in the quest for the Northwest Passage. A statue of Franklin in his home town bears the blatantly false inscription stating "Sir John Franklin — Discoverer of the North West Passage". Statues of Franklin outside the Athenaeum in London and in Tasmania bear similar inscriptions. Although the expedition's fate, including the possibility of cannibalism, was widely reported and debated, Franklin's standing with the public was not diminished.
The mystery surrounding Franklin's last expedition was the subject of a 2006 episode of the Nova television series Arctic Passage and a 2006 documentary "Franklin's Lost Expedition" on Discovery HD Theater. The expedition has inspired many artistic works including a famous ballad, Lady Franklin's Lament, a verse play by Canadian poet Gwendolyn MacEwen, a children's book, a short story and essays by Canadian author Margaret Atwood, and several novels, and is referenced in Canadian musician Stan Rogers' ballad Northwest Passage.
There is also a direct reference to John Franklin's ill-fated expedition in the Irish-American group Nightnoise's album Something of Time, specifically in a track titled "The Erebus and the Terror". Additionally in 2007, a fictional account of the expedition was authored by Dan Simmons titled The Terror (ISBN 978-0-316-01744-2). Guitarist Bert Jansch and the band Pentangle (band) also interpreted the traditional song 'Lord Franklin'.
From 1954 to the introduction of decimal currency in 1966, Franklin's image appeared on the Australian £5 (five pound) note.
He is the namesake for the R/V Franklin, a research vessel built in Queensland. She currently flies the Swedish flag and serves in northern Europe.
Franklin was commemorated by several geographic names, including two islands in Antarctica and Greenland, Franklin Sound north of Tasmania and Franklin Strait in Arctic Canada, whereas his wife has given name to Lady Franklinfjord in Svalbard.
The wintering site of Franklin's second Canadian expedition, in Deline, Northwest Territories, was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1996. The explorer was also remembered when one of Canada's Northwest Territories subdivisions was named the District of Franklin. Including the high Arctic islands, this jurisdiction was abolished when the Territories were divided in 1999.
On 29 October 2009 a special service of thanksgiving was held in the chapel at the Royal Naval College, Greenwich, to accompany the rededication of the national monument to Sir John Franklin there. The service also included the solemn re-interment of the remains of Lieutenant Henry Thomas Dundas Le Vesconte, the only remains ever repatriated to England, entombed within the monument in 1873. The event brought together members of the international polar community and invited guests included polar travellers, photographers and authors and descendants of Franklin, Captain Francis Rawdon Moira Crozier and their men, and the families of those who went to search for them, including McClintock, Rear Admiral Sir John Ross and Vice Admiral Sir Robert McClure among many others.
The gala was directed by the Rev Jeremy Frost and polar historian Dr Huw Lewis-Jones and was organised by Polarworld and the High Commission of Canada to the United Kingdom. It was a celebration of the contributions made by the United Kingdom in the charting of the Canadian North, which honoured the loss of life in the pursuit of geographical discovery. It also marked the 150th anniversary of Francis Leopold McClintock's voyage aboard the yacht Fox, returning to London with news of the tragedy. The Navy was represented by Admiral Nick Wilkinson, prayers were led by the Bishop of Woolwich and among the readings were eloquent tributes from Duncan Wilson, chief executive of the Greenwich Foundation and H.E. James Wright, the Canadian High Commissioner.
At a private drinks reception in the Painted Hall which followed this Arctic service, Chief Marine Archaeologist for Parks Canada Robert Grenier spoke of his ongoing search for the missing expedition ships. The following day a group of polar authors went to London's Kensal Green Cemetery to pay their respects to the Arctic explorers buried there. After some difficulty, McClure's gravestone was located. It is hoped that his memorial, in particular, may be conserved in the future. Many other veterans of the searches for Franklin are buried there, including Admiral Sir Horatio Thomas Austin, Admiral Sir George Back, Admiral Sir Edward Augustus Inglefield, Admiral Bedford Clapperton Trevelyan Pim, and Admiral Sir John Ross.
Franklin's redoubtable wife Jane Griffin, Lady Franklin, is also interred at Kensal Green in the vault, and commemorated on a marble cross dedicated to her niece Sophia Cracroft.
Works about John Franklin
- Franklin Saga Deaths: A Mystery Solved? National Geographic Magazine, Vol 178, No 3, Sep 1990.
- Beardsley, Martyn. Deadly Winter.
- Beattie, Owen, and Geiger, John (1989). Frozen in Time: Unlocking the Secrets of the Franklin Expedition. Saskatoon: Western Producer Prairie Books. ISBN 0-88833-303-X.
- Beattie, Owen and Geiger, John (2004). Frozen In Time: The Fate of the Franklin Expedition (Revised edition)
- Berton, Pierre The Arctic Grail.
- Coleman, E. C. (2006). The Royal Navy in Polar Exploration, Franklin to Scott.
- Coleman, E. C. (2006). The Royal Navy in Polar Exploration, Frobisher to Ross. ISBN 0-7524-3660-0.
- Cookman, Scott (2001). Ice Blink: The Tragic Fate of Sir John Franklin's Lost Polar Expedition. ISBN 0-471-40420-9
- Hutchinson, Gillian (2009) "Searching for Franklin and the Northwest Passage". ISBN 978-0-948065-84-2.
- Joel, C. R. (2011) A Tale of Ambition and Unrealised Hope: John Montagu and Sir John Franklin. ISBN 978-1-921509-82-7
- Owen Beatle and John Geiger (1992) "Buried in ice: The mystery of a lost arctic expedition" ISBN 0-590-43849-2
- Lambert, Andrew (2009) Franklin: Tragic Hero of Polar Navigation. ISBN 978-0-571-23160-7.
- McGoogan, Ken Fatal Passage.
- McGoogan, Ken Lady Franklin's Revenge.
- Mirsky, Jeannette (1970). To the Arctic!: The Story of Northern Exploration from Earliest Times. ISBN 0-226-53179-1.
- Murray, David. (2004). The Arctic Fox: Francis Leopold McClintock, Discoverer of the fate of Franklin. Cork: The Collins Press, ISBN 1-55002-523-6.
- NOVA – Arctic Passage Part 1 – Prisoners of the Ice (TV documentary). See also program transcript.
- Payton, Brian (2009) The Ice Passage ISBN 978-0-385-66532-2
- Poulsom, Neville W. & Myres, J. A. L. (2000). British polar exploration and research : a historical and medallic record with biographies, 1818–1999 . London: Savannah.
- Sutton, Ann, and Myron Sutton. Journey into Ice; John Franklin and the Northwest Passage,. Chicago: Rand McNally, 1965.
- Stefánsson, Vilhjálmur (1938). Unsolved Mysteries of the Arctic.
- Woodman, David C. Unraveling the Franklin Mystery: Inuit Testimony.
- The Discovery of Slowness, Sten Nadolny, Novel, 1983.
- The Rifles (novel), William T. Vollmann, Novel, 1994.
- The Terror (novel), Dan Simmons, Horror novel, 2007.
- The Broken Lands, Robert Edric, Novel, 1992
- The Ice Child, Elizabeth McGregor, Dutton, 3 May 2001
- Solomon Gursky Was Here, Mordecai Richler, 1989
- The Adventures of Captain Hatteras, Jules Verne, 1864, a novel in which Captain Hatteras shows many similarities with John Franklin.
- The Voyage of the Narwhal, Andrea Barrett, Novel, 1998
- Arctic Drift, Clive Cussler, Novel, 2008.
- Wanting, Richard Flanagan, Novel, 2008.
- Heart of Darkness (novel), Joseph Conrad,1902. See paragraph 6 in any edition for thematic references to John Franklin.
- "Lady Franklin's Lament", Traditional Ballad
- "Northwest Passage", Stan Rogers, a modern ballad explicitly citing Franklin and others, is a staple of Canadian political discourse
- The band Nightnoise included a track called The Erebus and the Terror in their 1987 album Something of Time.
- John Franklin: Traveller on Undiscovered Seas By John Wilson
- Elliott, Ray (July 2001). St Mary's Horncastle – a church tour. The Parochial Church Council of the Ecclesiastical Parish of St Mary's, Horncastle.
- "Dictionary of Canadian Biography online – Sir john Franklin". Retrieved 30 November 2008.
- "Great Canadian Rivers: The Hayes". Great Canadian Rivers. TV Ontario. 2001-10-29. Retrieved 2013-12-14.
- Franklin, John. Gutenberg.org Narrative of a Journey to the Shores of the Polar Sea, Volume 2, 3rd Edition. p. 279.
- The Hobart Town Courier (Tas: 1827–1839) Friday 26 1837, Page 2 – NLA Australian Newspapers
- Serle, Percival. "Franklin, John (1786–1847)". Dictionary of Australian Biography. Project Gutenberg Australia. Retrieved 1 May 2008.
- Kathleen, Fitzpatrick (1966). "Franklin, Sir John (1786–1847)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 1 May 2008.
- McClear, Colin. A Dreamtime of Dromana. A History of Dromana through the eyes of a pioneering family. pp 50 Published by Dromana Historical Society. March 2006 pp 22 ISBN 0-9757127-6-4
- Gibson, F.R.G.S., William (June 1937). "Sir John Franklin's Last Voyage: A brief history of the Franklin expedition and the outline of the researches which established the facts of its tragic outcome". The Beaver: 48.
- Battersby, William, "Identification of the Probable Source of the Lead Poisoning Observed in Members of the Franklin Expedition", Journal of the Hakluyt Society, 2008. Retrieved 25 November 2008.
- M'Clintock, Francis L. (1860). The Voyage of the 'Fox' in the Arctic Seas. A Narrative of the Discovery of the Fate of Sir John Franklin and His Companions. Boston: Ticknor and Fields. p. 336. ISBN 0-665-91060-6.
- McGoogan, Ken (2002). Fatal Passage: The True Story of John Rae, the Arctic Hero Time Forgot. New York: Carroll & Graf. ISBN 0-7867-0993-6.
- Amy, Roger; Bhatnagar, Rakesh; Damkjar, Eric; Beattie, Owen (15 July 1986). "The last Franklin Expedition: report of a postmortem examination of a crew member". Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) 135 (2): 115–117. PMC 1491204. PMID 3521821.
- Notman, Derek N.H.; Anderson, Lawrence; Beattie, Owen B.; Roger (1987). "Arctic Paleoradiology: Portable Radiographic Examination of Two Frozen Sailors from the Franklin Expedition (1845–48)" (PDF). American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR) (American Roentgen Ray Society) 149: 347–350. ISSN 0361-803X.
- Kowall, Walter; Beattie, Owen B.; Baadsgaard, Halfdan (25 January 1990). "Did solder kill Franklin's men?". Nature 343 (6256): 319–320. Bibcode:1990Natur.343..319K. doi:10.1038/343319b0.
- Kowall, W.A.; Krahn, P.M.; Beattie, O. B. (Received:1988-06-29). "Lead Levels in Human Tissues from the Franklin Forensic Project". International Journal Environmental Analytical Chemistry (Gordon and Breach Science Publishers) 35 (2): 119–126. doi:10.1080/03067318908028385.
- Keenleyside, Anne; Bertulli, Margaret; Fricke, Henry C. (1997). "The Final Days of the Franklin Expedition: New Skeletal Evidence" (PDF). Arctic (The Arctic Institute of North America) 50 (1): 36–46. ISSN 0004-0843.
- Kennedy, Maev (28 October 2009). "Copper clue may solve mystery of doomed Victorian Arctic expedition". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 May 2011.
- Franklin rose
- Déline Fishery / Franklin's Fort National Historic Site of Canada. Canadian Register of Historic Places. Retrieved 4 October 2013.
- Article by Dr Huw Lewis-Jones
- Online review of recent Service of Thanksgiving
- Online blog of Service of Thanksgiving
- Online blog at McClure's Memorial in London
- "Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to end by leaving you with a line from Stan Rogers’ unofficial Canadian anthem – Northwest Passage." Address by the Prime Minister Stephen Harper, 17 August 2006 in Yellowknife
- Canadian Encyclopedia
- Alexander, Alison (editor) (2005)The Companion to Tasmanian HistoryCentre for Tasmanian Historical Studies, University of Tasmania, Hobart. ISBN 1-86295-223-X.
- Robson, L.L. (1983) A history of Tasmania. Volume 1. Van Diemen's Land from the earliest times to 1855Melbourne, Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-554364-5
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to John Franklin.|
- Franklin and the North-West Passage Original reports from The Times
- [http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/arctic/ NOVA's companion website for Arctic Passage
- Biography at the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online
- The Fate of Franklin (Russell Potter)
- The Life and Times of Sir John Franklin
- List of artefacts recovered from the Franklin Expedition
- Paper from the Universary of Calgary about the discovery of skeletal remains in 1992
- Works by John Franklin at Project Gutenberg
- Ottawa plans search for Franklin ships, Toronto Star, 14 August 2008.
- Search for Franklin from Frozen Ocean: Search for the North-west Passage
Sir George Arthur
|Lieutenant Governor of Van Diemen's Land
Sir John Eardley-Wilmot