Skip to Content

Meet the Crew of the Ross Sea Party

Below are the members of the Ross Sea Party, part of Sir Ernest Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition 1914–17.  The Ross Sea Party occupied Scott's expedition base at Cape Evans from 1915 - 1917.

Aeneas Lionel Acton Mackintosh, Captain RNR

AO Stevens, Chief scientist, geologist

JL Cope, Doctor and biologist

AK Jack, Meteorologist

RW Richards, Physicist

Reverend AP Spencer-Smith, Padre and photographer

IO Gaze, General assistant

E Wild, General assistant

VG Hayward, Secretary

EEM Joyce, In charge of dogs and equipment

The above people all lived in Scott’s Cape Evan’s expedition base at varying times.

ALA Mackintosh

Born Tirhut India, 1879. Attended Bedford Modern School 1891–1894, then went to sea in the merchant navy service and served in the skysail ships Cromdale and Mount Stewart. In 1899, became a junior officer in RMS Victoria of the P & O Company. He was commissioned to the rank of sub-lieutenant, Royal Naval Reserve in 1908. Served on the Nimrod expedition and was awarded the Silver Polar Medal with clasp (Antarctic 1907–09) in 1909. Involved in an unsuccessful search for treasure in the Cocos Islands, and, in 1914, resigned his post, as Assistant Secretary to the Imperial Merchant Service Guild in Liverpool, to take up his position as leader of the Ross Sea Party ITAE. He led the sledging party that laid the southernmost depot at Mount Hope at latitude 83º 35’S, 171º 30’E on 26 January 1916. On 8 May, that year was lost when crossing the sea-ice to Cape Evans. Mackintosh is commemorated with Mount Mackintosh 74º 20’S, 162º 15’E.

Alexander O Stevens

Born Kilmarnock, Ayrshire, 1886. Educated at Kilmarnock Academy and, in 1907, graduated MA from Glasgow University. Taught for a short while at the Nicholson Institution, Stownaway, Isle of Lewis in the Hebrides. After the expedition, returned to England, married and served until 1919 with the Artist’s Rifles Ordinance Survey and, the same year, was appointed lecturer in geography at the University of Glasgow. His records were lost when the Medina was torpedoed in the English Channel. Participated in an expedition to Spitsbergen examining coal deposits. Appointed Dean of Science at the University of Glasgow and, in 1947, Professor. He retired in 1953 and died in 1965.

John Lachlan Cope

Born 1883, and second youngest appointment to the expedition. Attended Christ’s College, Cambridge in 1911–14, graduating BA in Natural Science and appointed to the expedition as biologist on the recommendation of Sir Arthur Shipley, Master at Christ’s. While the Aurora was being outfitted in Sydney, was appointed the expedition doctor. He returned to England, married and joined the Royal Naval Air Service as Lieutenant and Surgeon for the rest of the First World War. In 1918, sought public support for his British Imperial Antarctic Expedition 1919–22. This never eventuated and he then embarked on his British Graham Land Expedition 1920–22. He resumed study in medicine and qualified Licenciate, Society of Apocatharies and opened a private practice. In 1939–41 was Medical Officer of Health in Colchester. He died in 1947.

Andrew Keith Jack

Born 1885 at Brighton, Victoria, he received his early education at Brighton Grammar School and then progressed to an officer with an insurance company. Attended the University of Melbourne and graduated MSc (Hons) then taught science at Dookie Agricultural College from 1911 before joining the Ross Sea Party. After the expedition, volunteered for the Australian Expeditionary Force (AIF) but was seconded to the Commonwealth cordite factory in Maribyrnong. In World War Two went overseas on several occasions and, until his retirement in 1950, was Secretary of the Operational Safety Committee of the Department of Munitions and Supply in Australia. He died in 1966.

Richard Walter Richards

Born in Bendigo, Victoria, 1893. Won a scholarship for Teachers’ Training College and attended Melbourne University where he completed work in natural philosophy (physics and mathematics). Was at the university when he applied for a position on the expedition. In 1917, he resumed teaching in mathematics and physics at the School of Mines in Ballarat, Victoria and, in 1923, received the Albert Medal for gallant conduct in saving the lives of Mackintosh and Hayward, this was subsequently exchanged for the George Cross. Taught at Creswick Forestry School near Ballarat and, in World War Two, acted as scientific adviser on the production of optical apparatus in Australia. Appointed principal at the School of Mines and Industry in Australia, 1948, and retired in 1958. The last Shackleton man, he died in 1985. Dick Richards is commemorated with the Richard W Richards medal (1961) at the Ballarat College for Advanced Education, and Richards Inlet near the mouth of the Lennox-King Glacier 83º 20’S, 168º 30’E.

Arnold Patrick Spencer-Smith

Nicknamed ‘AP’. Born 1883 in Streatham, Surrey. Studied classics at Woodridge Grammar School and attended King’s College, London and Queen’s College, Cambridge where he graduated BA. In 1907, appointed Master at Murchiston Castle Preparatory School Edinburgh, teaching French and mathematics. Ordained Deacon at Edinburgh Cathedral 1910 and was Curate at All Saints Edinburgh. He died in 1916, following the laying of the depot at Mount Hope and was buried on the Ross Ice Shelf. Spencer-Smith is commemorated with Cape Spencer-Smith on White Island 78º 00’S, 167º 27’E.

Irvine Owen Gaze

Born in 1890, and a cousin of Spencer-Smith. Educated at Scotch College, West Australia, and was in business in Melbourne when he joined the expedition. After the expedition, went to England and joined the Royal Flying Corps and qualified as an instructor. He was shot down twice. Between the two World Wars held an executive position with the Clifton Shoe Company at Clifton Hill Victoria and in World War Two was an instructor with the RAAF and became a Squadron Leader. He then farmed sheep, and died in 1978.

Henry Ernest Wild

Nicknamed ‘Tubby’. Born at Nettleton, Lincolnshire in 1879, and went to sea at the age of 15. Spent the next 20 years in the Royal Navy, including three years in South African waters at the time of the Boer War. In 1908, when serving in the Mediterranean, assisted Italy after the earthquake in Messina, Sicily. After the expedition, he rejoined for the eighth time HMS Pembroke and, in 1918, transferred to HMS Biarritz. Contracted typhoid and died in the RN Hospital, Malta. In 1923, Wild was awarded posthumously the Albert Medal for gallant conduct for saving the lives of Mackintosh and Hayward.

Victor George Hayward

Known as ‘Vic’. Born in London, in 1889, he had experience with dogs on cattle ranches in Canada, and in office work in London. He died in 1916, when crossing the sea-ice from Hut Point to Cape Evans and, in 1923, was awarded posthumously the Albert Medal for gallant conduct in Antarctica.

Ernest Edward Mills Joyce

Born Bognor, England, 1875. Joined the Royal Navy, 1891, AB, on Discovery expedition, left Royal Navy to join Nimrod expedition. Member of Ross Sea Party, and awarded Albert Medal in bronze. Married a New Zealand woman. Died in London, 1940. Mount Joyce, 75º 36’S, 160º 38’E.

Joseph Russell Stenhouse

Born in 1887 at Dumbarton, Scotland. Educated at Barrow Grammar School, Lancashire. Became a clerk with Lloyd's register of shipping and left to become an apprentice on the sailing ship Springbank. Gained his master’s ticket and offered appointment as First Mate on the Aurora. After the Aurora was taken out in a blizzard in 1915, and with Captain Mackintosh marooned on Ross Island, Stenhouse became Captain and successfully brought the Aurora back to Port Chalmers where the ship was refitted for the relief expedition. In 1918, he sailed to Murmansk with Shackleton and other polar associates and trained Russian forces in methods and hygiene of polar transport and housing. Between the wars, held a variety of posts including, in 1923–29, as Captain and Nautical Adviser on Scott’s old vessel, RRS Discovery during whale research in the Antarctic. He then tried to get a private Antarctic tourism operation underway but this never succeeded. In 1931, was promoted to Commander.  He joined HMS Sheba and was posted missing during service in the Red Sea in 1941. Captain Stenhouse’s decorations included the DSC, DSO, OBE and Croix de Guerre. He is commemorated in Antarctica with Stenhouse Bluff in the South Shetland Islands 62º 04’S, 58º 24’W.