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Born Oct. 25, 1888, in Winchester, Va.; died Mar. 12, 1957, in Boston. American polar explorer, pilot, and admiral. Leader of four major American Antarctic expeditions.
During his first expedition (1928-30) aircraft, radio communication, and mechanized transport allowed Byrd to penetrate the interior regions of Antarctica, which are difficult to reach. In November 1929, Byrd flew over the South Pole. Meteorological and geographical observations as well as geological studies were conducted in the Queen Maud Mountains. The second expedition (1933-35) carried out seismological research on the Ross Ice Shelf and confirmed the presence of large deposits of coal (Mount Weaver and Mount Blackburn in western Antarctica). The third expedition (1939-41) had the chief goal of asserting American sovereignty over specific portions of Antarctica (Marie Byrd Land, Graham Land, and others). The fourth expedition (1946-47), organized by the U. S. Department of the Navy, did aerial photography of a considerable part of the coast of western Antarctica and its interior regions.
During Byrd’s expeditions to Antarctica the Rockefeller Plateau, Grosvenor Range, Edsel Ford Range, Amundsen Glacier, Marie Byrd Land (1929), Horlick Mountains (1934), Hobbs Coast, Kohler Range, Walgreen Coast, Fletcher Islands (1940), and American Highland Plateau (1947) were discovered. An American scientific station was named after Byrd.
WORKSLittle America.… New York-London, 1930.
Antarctic Discovery: The Story of the Second Byrd Antarctic Expedition. London, 1936.
In Russian translation:
Nad luzhnym poliusom. Leningrad, 1935.
Snova v Antarktike. Leningrad, 1937.