"); If you'd like to comment please contact me, McNish was an outspoken, opinionated Scotsman. Copyright © Patrick Roberts & Purr 'n' Fur UK 2003-17 Macklin, Crean, and the carpenter seemed to feel the loss of their friends rather badly. For some years he has worked on independent musical projects, producing and releasing CDs particularly in the Celtic genre, and highlights from his albums can be found on major-label compilations next to songs by the likes of Clannad, Enya and Mike Oldfield. (if this happens, use Refresh from your toolbar to reload the page). Mrs. Chippy had been stranded in the ocean’s icy waters for a full 10 minutes before the crew was able to rescue the pet. No doubt he had some extra 'treats' to eat, as a relief from the usual fare of sealmeat for breakfast, sealmeat for lunch and sealmeat for supper. In a diary entry dated 29 October 1915 he recorded: This afternoon Sallie's three youngest pups, Sue's Sirius, and Mrs. Chippy, the carpenter's cat, have to be shot. mrs. chippy was also killed, chippy the carpenter (and maybe others) lamented this too. These dogs suffered from lack of exercise and oddly, considering the important role they would be expected to play later were not very well looked after; indeed, poor condition led to the early demise of several of them. Nor, indeed, ultimately for the dogs, who despite being rationed were consuming more meat than the men. It was taken by expedition photographer Frank Hurley and looks as though it might have been taken outside the galley. The upshot, as is well known, was that eventually, after three and a half months and against great odds, Shackleton did manage to lead all the crew to safety and no human life was lost. He was in the freezing water for ten minutes or more, but soon recovered although undoubtedly one of his nine lives had been used up! LIFE ON THE ICE. His crew were entirely loyal to Shackleton and respected his judgement, and so the decision had to be made. document.write("?subject=Mrs Chippy\">"); Fully and proper tribute cannot be given to the intrepid expeditioners until the photos are posted. Images and content (whether original or used at Purr 'n' Fur with permission) may NOT be reproduced Crew members paid their respects with a caress, a stroke or a tickle under the chin; the cat had been their companion throughout all their adversity and a great source of comfort in their numerous hardships. What he did not like were the 70-odd Canadian sledge dogs that lived a rather miserable life chained up in lines of restrictive kennels on each side of the deck. He was a handsome, intelligent, good-natured and affectionate animal, and a first-rate mouser and ratcatcher to boot. We could not undertake the maintenance of weaklings under the new conditions. chippy is the nickname of carpenters in england, and the ship’s carpenter brought his kitten for the trip. Well you might ask. An extraordinary thing happened during the night. The incident is recorded in the diary of Thomas Orde-Lees, 13 September 1914 (in which he refers to the cat as 'she'). What did the men do for fun when the boat was blocked by ice? Artwork and an accompanying booklet feature original photographs taken by expedition photographer Frank Hurley and licensed by the RGS in London and the SPRI in Cambridge. The carpenter … McNish had little time to mourn his beloved cat, as he had much work to do preparing and modifying the three lifeboats for sea; the lives of all the men would depend on these boats. , Cat who accompanied Sir Ernest Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, "South Georgia Newsletter, February 2011", Purr 'n' Fur: Mrs Chippy, of Shackleton's, The Great Cat: Cats in 20th Century History (Mrs. Chippy), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mrs_Chippy&oldid=991697792, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 1 December 2020, at 10:47. WWI. Direct linking (hotlinking) to ANY images on this site is strictly forbidden. His eyes lit up like saucers, frantic, like a mad man, for a moment, “He shot my fucking cat!” he announced at the top of his voice for all the bar to hear. But new circumstances brought new priorities; Shackleton had three of the youngest pups shot along with the cat. The cat spent a lot of time grooming and the diet now changed to pemmican seemed to suit him. It seems that after the crew had made their farewells McNish probably took the cat into his tent to say his goodbyes, when the steward Blackborow somehow rustled up a bowl of sardines Mrs Chippy's favourite and a real treat. Harry McNish and Mrs. Chippy. Shackleton was pleased to have the cat join the crew, as a good mouser was important on board ship to keep rodents under control and prevent them damaging the stores (as of course the crew of Amethyst would later confirm: see the story of Simon and HMS Amethyst). 'The only thing I remember him saying,' says Norris, 'was that Shackleton s… Page created November 2004, with later revisions and additions, Imperial Trans-Antarctica Expedition 1914-17, Tribute to cat killed by Shackleton in Antarctic. His gravestone, however, uses the McNeish spelling. seal meat and blubber. In spite of the name he was a tough tomcat from Glasgow, and he belonged to Henry (Harry) McNish, ship's carpenter and master shipwright. However, played by 'Mac', Mrs Chippy did feature in the 2002 Channel 4 film Shackleton, starring Kenneth Branagh in the title role and with Ken Drury playing McNish (available on DVD). He soon established himself and became a favourite with most of the crew. Unfortunately, Mrs. Chippy's journal comes to an abrupt end when the Endurance is crushed by the ice, and Alexander makes no mention of what happened on that day. Of course, animals were the original test pilots for space missions. Mrs Chippy continued to sleep through much of what was happening, prompting the remark, years later, from a crew member: 'Mrs Chippy's almost total disregard for the diabolical forces at work on the ship was more than remarkable it was inspirational. Featuring Felines MRS CHIPPY. After word got around the office Mrs. Landingham purchased her first new car, the president asked her to come back to the White House after picking it up so he could see it. Who was in charge of the photography? Chippy’s Last Expedition” is a wonderful account of life on ship during those 10 months of entrapment in the ice. Further examples of Chris Elliott's work can be seen at his website. , McNish was very attached to Mrs Chippy and never forgave Shackleton for having him killed. Dogs were also popular companions on the warfront. These were called 'dogloos'. See our companion article describing some other Antarctic Cats But by then the name had stuck. There is a postscript to the story of the unfortunate Mrs Chippy. Mrs Chippy’s voyage was not without incident. A tabby cat taken on board by the carpenter Harry McNish, "Mrs Chippy" was later found to be male! Not unexpectedly they howled and made a lot of noise, and this rather unnerved the cat at first. 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