McClintock, Sir Francis Leopold, 1819–1907, British arctic explorer. As a lieutenant in the navy he was assigned to his first arctic service in 1848, when Sir James Clark Ross went in search of the lost expedition of Sir John Franklin. On this voyage and on the Franklin search expedition (1850–51) under Capt. Horatio Austin, McClintock learned and developed the Eskimo art of sledging. On the Austin expedition he mapped much of the south coast of Melville Island; while on Sir Edward Belcher's expedition (1852–54), he discovered and mapped most of Prince Patrick Island. In 1857, Lady Franklin placed him in command of the Fox, in which he set forth in search of more definite knowledge of Franklin's fate. The Fox remained in the Arctic until 1859; McClintock discovered the channel that bears his name, explored Prince of Wales Island and the east coast of King William Island, and sledged to Boothia Peninsula. He found records that disclosed that Franklin and his party had left their ships alive and had begun the march toward Hudson Bay. McClintock also proved that Franklin had found the existence of the Northwest Passage before he perished. The account of McClintock's findings was published as The Voyage of the Fox (1859), which achieved great popularity. He retired from the navy in 1884 with the rank of admiral.
See biography by Sir Clements Markham (1909).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.