Ross, Sir James Clark, 1800–1862, British polar explorer and rear admiral. In 1818 he accompanied his uncle, Sir John Ross, in search of the Northwest Passage and commanded the Erebus. He later studied Eskimo life while on several arctic voyages (1819–27) with W. E. Parry. In another expedition (1829–33) with his uncle, he located (1831) in Boothia Peninsula the north magnetic pole (now located in Prince of Wales Island). In command of an expedition (1839–43) to study earth magnetism in Antarctica, Ross discovered Ross Sea, reaching Ross Island and following the Ross Ice Shelf eastward for c.350 mi (560 km). He also discovered Victoria Land and much of North Graham Land. He recorded his experiences in his Voyage of Discovery and Research to Southern and Antarctic Regions (1847). In 1848–49 he made another visit to the Arctic in search for Sir John Franklin.
See E. S. Dodge, The Polar Rosses (1973); A. Gurney, The Race to the White Continent (2000).
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