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Scotsman claims North Pole for self
15 years before writing Noose of Laurels Wally Herbert wrote to Cook Society author Hugh Eames*

"...the general public could easily be fooled...do not appear to have a chip on your shoulder—let the reader form his own conclusions...if it is merely a David and Goliath situationwhere you are determined to take on the American "establishment" and fell it with one well-timed book—beware!..."
*Eames authored Winner Lose All, a book that claims Cook climbed Mt. Mckinley and reached the North Pole but was suppressed by some conspiracy of wealthy men. Original letter at Ohio State University Archives
The myth that Peary may have missed the North Pole has reached "urban legend status". In the last 15 years a certain segment of the public have begun to believe it is true without any substantial proof, only a book author's theory. And that author faked the evidence.
Herbert's conspiracy theories make him seem paranoid. It is hypocritical to portray Peary as a 'weather beaten old fanatic'...given Herbert's own appearance & fanatical theories. This photo of Peary, after he had returned from the Pole shows a man who appears stronger & more physically fit than Herbert did at the Pole.
"The financial motive is all too obvious. Herbert's website openly proclaims himself, not Peary, as first to reach the North Pole ...selling pictures for as much as US $15,000..."
[from Herbert's website]
"The 6th of April, 1969—The day on which the North Pole was reached for the very first time by a party of men on foot."
(above) The caption is a shocking insult to American history. It requires an explanation: The British Royals literally hate Peary because he didn't take Bartlett to the Pole.
Herbert's theories all proved false. But his best selling book had far more impact than a single magazine article in one issue of the National Geographic. Many people do not even know this proof exists.
 
"...which one is really the...weather-beaten old fanatic?"
Derived image of Wally Herbert; his website claims he is "...an artist whose paintings are now owned by Royals and investors all over the World." Prices: US$6,000 to $15,000 and up.
The encyclopedia Britannica concise offers this misinformation as a result of the success of Herbert's book: "Examination of Peary's expedition diary and new documents in the 1980s suggested he may only have reached a point 30-60 mi (50-100 km) short of the pole."

"Who examined Peary's diary?" Wally Herbert examined it. And do you know what? Wally Herbert lied about what he found. Let me say that again so there is no mistake. He lied. Oh, yes, people who don't know what they are talking about parrot the dust jacket remarks that Noose of Laurels is "well researched." It was not. 

"What new documents are the Britannica referring to?"  There were no new documents; only the infamous Dennis Rawlins blunder. But that was a mistake. So the Encyclopedia Britannica is wrong again? (Yes, that too is a fact.) The Cook Society ran a budget item called "The Encyclopedia Project" to pay graduate students to author material for submission to the best know encyclopedias.

Let me say this again, clearly, so you understand. Herbert did not perform any research that is any different than what was required in my college freshman English composition class for a basic term paper. I am not exaggerating. Maybe so few people have gone to college or somehow never took English composition 101 (the basic requirement for all freshman) that this is not understood. In fact, Herbert did not even pass the basic requirement of telling the truth. He lied. He faked his term paper.

Research is simply going to a library and making bibliographic notes (on file cards is a common method) while reading appropriate sources. This is freshman level stuff. True, Herbert has persuasive writing skill and that is why his book was so successful. But we are discussing the foundation of his work here; the facts obtained by research. Those facts are false. Do you doubt this? Peary's diary mentions reaching the North Pole in several places. That is a fact you can verify for yourself. Now read Herbert's book. Herbert says the diary does not mention reaching the Pole. That is false. Herbert lied, or Herbert was so sloppy he never found any of Peary's notes about the "North Pole." If the latter than he is merely a sloppy researcher.

If Herbert is innocent of malice, he is guilty of unprofessional research. He claims there is something "wrong" with Peary's diary because Peary did not write "North Pole" on the cover. No, that proves it is authentic! If Peary were alive he would simply say "Ok, Mr. Herbert, here—let me write "North Pole" on the cover. Now are you happy?"

Herbert similarly made research mistakes by overlooking the complete wind data from notes made by Peary's team. If he had been more thorough, as Doug Davies has been, he would have realized that his major theory of westward drift has no basis in fact.
In fact, they know that Peary had stated in a letter to Bartlett that he did not want the discovery to be a joint America-British victory. No British Royal financed any of Peary's expeditions; not a single dollar. Peary was an officer in the US Navy who went to the arctic under orders from his Commander in Chief, President Theodore Roosevelt.  Not the Queen of England!

Bartlett, on the other hand, was paid to be the captain of Peary's ship—never a co-discovered at the Pole. Britain honored Peary in 1910 and declared him the first to reach the North Pole, not Wally Herbert. However, this was before their polar bungler (that is what historians call Robert Falcon Scott) lost the South Pole to Roald Amundsen. Thus the British ended up with no polar victories, only humiliating defeat. So they turned on Peary.

• Now, about that caption to the watercolor Herbert sells: "The 6th of April, 1969—The day on which the North Pole was reached for the very first time by a party of men on foot." Obviously that statement is a lie. Peary reached the Pole 60 years earlier. Herbert only made this claim 17 years later when he tried to rewrite history to make people believe Peary was a fraud. But it is not true. Another strange aspect of this claim is the fact that Herbert only arrived at the Pole because of massive re-supply from airplanes. Perhaps he should claim to be the first to reach the Pole by means of an Air Force?
"...according to His Royal Highness, Prince Charles, (he suggests having Wally) stuffed and put on display!" (from Herbert promotional info on his website)
This Royal Prince, and his brother Prince, are both fond supporters of Wally Herbert. [London, June 24, 2002.(Pool/Reuters)]

• Understanding the psychological background for this requires one to recall that while the USA landed on the moon, England's Royals tried to steal the North Pole prize from Peary. Although these Royals had honored Peary in 1910, that was before their beloved Scott starved to death in a humiliating defeat at the South Pole. Amundsen, you see, used Peary's navigation, logistics, and travel methods. He succeeded with ease, while England's team suffered slow, horrible deaths. Now you understand why Britain Royals came to hate Amundsen, and later extend their resentment to Peary for not taking Bartlett. This is well documented in a 1929 book by English cleric Rev. Hayes who wrote a British version of the anti-Peary vitriol North Pole fraud Dr. Cook started.
 

Artwork for the "made for TV movie" Cook & Peary.

Tireless troublemaker Vetters brown-nosing Chamberlain on Cook & Peary film set.
"Wally Herbert's paintings...range from £4,000...up to £10,000 (and occasionally more)...these paintings are very definitely collectors works due to the unique relationship (in this case) between the artist and the explorer and that NOW is the time to commission."

Wally Herbert, Rowan Cottage, Catlodge, Laggan
InRustyss-shire, Scotland, UK
 
Why did Peary let Bartlett earn the honor of farthest north?
"...because of (Bartlett) saving me hundreds of petty annoyances...I felt it appropriate ...that it should be a British subject who could boast that next to an American he had been nearest to the Pole."
(From Peary's Diary) "Bartlett has done good work and been a great help to me. I have give him this post of honor because he was fit for it, because of his handling of the (ship) Roosevelt because of his saving me hundreds of petty annoyances, & because I felt it appropriate in view of England's magnificent Arctic work covering ____ years that it should be a British subject who could boast that next to an American he had been nearest to the Pole."
Why did Peary allow his employee Bob Bartlett the "Second Nearest to The North Pole" team position? Peary did not want him at the Pole because he saw no reason to make any employee his equal as an explorer; it would only benefit Bartlett by forever tying his name to Peary's great geographic prize. Bartlett was technically a "British subject" even though he lived in Newfoundland which was "...settled by Indians and Eskimos ...Viking ruins from circa 1000 AD ...found in the North of the island. Englishman John Cabot claimed the island for England in 1497...France and England disputed possession...England retained control with the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht, controversies over fishing rights (the famous Grand Banks) continued through the 19th century. Newfoundland became a Canadian province in 1949."
Herbert had numerous motives:
1) To make money with a sensational book.
2) To boost his fading "career." It worked!
3) To be knighted in England. He was!
4) To sell himself as a speaker (he has an agency for bookings). But who believes him?
5) To sells paintings of himself discovering the North Pole. He sells them for up to $10,000.
Herbert made a foolish research blunder by misreading Peary's handwriting. He thought the section on the "Dash" to the Pole was the "Dark." This spun his brain to weave a morbid psychological theory that has absolutely no merit. That isn't research, that is nonsense.

Herbert made his most foolish assertion when he contradicted himself over the westward drift. His other theory was that it was impossible for Peary to have traveled 133 miles to the Pole after leaving the last supply camp. But Herbert's drift theory has Peary going the 133 miles, only off to the west. Thus one theory makes his other theory impossible.

Herbert did not have  Peary's ocean depth measurements data correlated to the actual ocean floor depth. This was impossible back in the days of those "polar controversy" books he told Eames are out of print. This is new information obtained from submarines. Herbert shunned it. Why? Because it disproves his westward drift theory.

Herbert also knew that the ocean depth measurements lined up in a vector pointing to the North Pole. So in the final analysis Herbert had nothing. No evidence that Peary did not reach the Pole. The obvious conclusion is that Peary simply did what he said he did and what everyone on his expedition said they did.

Making money by writing a book requires something sensational that will sell in large enough quantities that royalties will be lucrative. No one can do that with a dull, matter of fact book. Thus Herbert embellished the old anti-Peary arguments set down by colossal fraud Cook; what Herbert referred to as "...the general public could easily be fooled that what you have to say has never before been said..." Do you understand the significance of this letter? Herbert is boasting that you, the American public, "could easily be fooled." Notice how Herbert advises Eames to "let the reader form his own conclusions." But keep in mind that those conclusions will be deliberately predetermined by the author as he crafts his text. This letter is simply one of many in the Cook Society Archives between Vetters, Gibbons, Eames, and Herbert. If you want to understand this long standing vendetta of anti-establishment, anti-Peary sentiment you may order copies of the files yourself. You will see that I am not exaggerating.

But who is Wally?
"Sir" Wally sells watercolors from his website somewhere in the Scottish fairy tale country called the United Kingdom. (Kingdom? What "Kingdom"?) In 1969, while America landed on the moon, Herbert went on a marathon luxury-camping trip across the Pole. It was generously air supplied by the British and Canadian air forces. But no one paid much attention to his trip in that time of the Vietnam War and the Apollo Moon landing. Literally, when the USA went to the moon, England camped out on the North Pole and now claim they, not the USA, were first to reach it. What the...? Yes, this is true.

17 years after the camping marathon, Herbert struck gold with his controversial anti-Peary conspiracy theory book, Noose of Laurels (1989), the media gave it the kind of sensational attention that profession is so well known for. Who put Herbert up to this book? The National Geographic Society in the tradition of upper-class excess they are so well known for. By the way, did you know that the National Geographic Society was founded by Gilbert Grosvenor and has been run by Gilbert Grosvenor since the 1880's? It is true. Only the middle initial changes from generation to generation.

In its haste to investigate the Peary matter the National Geographic hired Wally Herbert to examine Peary's diary and other records at the National Archives and commissioned him to write an article for the NGS magazine. They should have read the beginning of Herbert's 1973 book Across The Top of The World in which He sides with some unnamed "critics" who stated Peary was 60 miles short of the Pole (P.35). He references Peary's "incredible distances" as "physically impossible"(P.30). Instead the NGS gave Herbert a paid opportunity to concoct his best shot at Peary, a shot that ended up in the British encyclopedia as: "...new documents in the 1980s suggested (Peary) may only have reached a point 30-60 mi (50-100 km) short of the pole."

How did this happened?
Well, its a long story. Gil Grosvenor at the National Geographic was disgusted by the efforts of the anti-Peary conspiracy—a vendetta perpetuated by Dr. Cook's daughter—that led to a 1983 TV movie starring Richard Chamberlain as Dr. Cook. This Helene Vetters instigated production portrayed Peary and Henson as too dumb to find the North Pole with Dr. Cook as the hero who was cheated out of his discovery. It was absolutely trash. It was more historically inaccurate than anyone (who knows about these events) could have imagined. For example: Chamberlain, as Dr. Cook, had to explain why his Eskimos testified that they never left the sight of land. He claimed that there are "mirages" all the time on the horizon and he let the silly savages think that these were land so they wouldn't be afraid—Cook was a ceaseless liar.

Continued...


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