Polar Explorers

rudolf-stolz-big-(3).pngRudolf Stolz (1872- ??)

Stolz was a general crew member and stoker on the 2nd Fram expedition.

Rudolf Stolz was born in Kristiania (Oslo) and he had his background from office work before the 2nd Fram expedition. This caused some problems on the expedition. His big wish was to participate on the long and strenuous dog-sledge trips that characterised the expedition. During the 4-year long expedition, the men managed to survey c. 150 000 km2 of previously uncharted land in what are today the northern Canadian Arctic islands in the province of Nunavut. However, Stolz was apparently not suited to this type of work and none of the others wished to have him along. He was naturally dismayed by this and he complained in a letter to Otto Sverdrup, both of them being of course on the same ship at the time. Sverdrup laid out the facts to him in a face-to-face on the Fram in February 1900. Stolz took this so hard that Sverdrup took him along on the next sledging trip. Unfortunately this only served to illustrate Sverdrup’s impression of Stolz when the latter’s dog sledge ended in the water.

Sverdrup continued to complain in his diary about Stolz, but Ivar Fosheim wrote in his that Stolz needed more self-criticism and less criticism of the others, but that he all in all was very kind-hearted and meant well. His problem was that he overestimated his own competence and capabilities in this sort of work.

"Victory awaits him, who has everything in order - luck we call it.  Defeat is definitely due for him, who has neglected to take the necessary precautions - bad luck we call it"

Roald Amundsen

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