Wellman Walter 


American journalist. 
Born in Mentor, Ohio. 
Already at the age of 14, he founded a weekly newspaper in Sutton, Nebraska, and seven years later, the evening newspaper Cincinnati Post. From 1884 to 1911, he was a Washington correspondent for the Chicago Herald newspaper. 
Wellman combined journalistic work with research expeditions, was one of the pioneers of the balloonists. His first journey was the expedition of 1891 to the Bahamas, where, according to him, he found the exact landing site of Christopher Columbus. In 1894 he organized an expedition, which reached a latitude of 81° northeast of Spitsbergen. 
In 1898–9999 
Wellman led an American-Norwegian expedition to the Franz Josef Land archipelago , equipped with funds from American scientific societies and a number of private individuals. The purpose of the expedition was to geographically explore the archipelago and reach the pole. The ship "Fritjof" was launched at the end of June, but it could not get through to the Franz Josef Land. Then Wellman returned to Norway, replenished food supplies and again went north in late July. The second attempt was more successful. Having reached Cape Flora, the expedition took one of the sheds of F. Jackson from there and moved to the wintering site of Cape Tegethof on Gall Island in the southeastern part of the archipelago. On the western shore of the Land of Wilczek, a subbase was organized on which two experienced sailors, Biervig and Bentsen, were left. From here, Wellman with three Norwegians in March 1899 went to the pole. At a latitude of 82º, he sprained his leg, and the pole group returned to base. After the work of the Wellman expedition, the length of the Franz Josef Land archipelago became clear, one of the largest islands of the Graham-Bell archipelago was discovered, valuable materials on the climate of the archipelago were obtained.


"Fridiof" off the coast of Franz Josef Land


In 1906, Wellman decided to fly to the North Pole in a balloon, trying to repeat the flight of S. Andre, who disappeared in 1897. Unfortunately, this his enterprise was even less successful than the previous one. Serious painstaking preparation, he preferred the advertising hype and inventing all sorts of unthinkable improvements, the apotheosis of which was the creation of a cross member (device for braking the ball) of a special design. This guide was a shell about 50 m long, stuffed with dried meat, peas and other food products and covered with metal scales from above. This sausage, the longest in the world, as F. Nansen put it, was supposed, according to Wellman, to drag on the ice and come off in pieces that could be used by aeronauts when returning as food stores. I can not believe that this may be true. 
Wellman made a base in Virgo Bay on Svalbard in the same place where Andre had a base. Constructed in France, the airship "America" was launched in September 1907, but because of the rising strong wind fell several miles on the glacier. Cheesless Wellman built a new airship "America II". The new flight took place in August 1909, also from Virgo Bay, and also ended in complete failure. Having flown several kilometers to the north, the ship lost the sausage and began to decline. If there was no vessel nearby, Wellman could have expected Andree’s fate. 
After the expedition of R. Peary to the North Pole, Wellman lost interest in flying to the pole. In October 1910, he made an attempt to balloon the Atlantic Ocean.An expedition consisting of five people started from Atlantic City, but the ball was blown away from the ocean by 400 km to the area of Norfolk, Connecticut.

Wellman spent his last years in New York, where he died of liver cancer. 
Cape in the east of Rudolf Island archipelago Franz Josef Land. Named by V. Wellman in 1899 in honor of his brother Arthur Wellman, who outfitted the ship “Capella” in 1899 at his own expense, which took the expedition of V. Wellman from the archipelago to the mainland.

The cliff on the island of Danish, Alberta Land in the north of the island of West Spitsbergen. The coordinates are 79° 40'N    10° 40'E.


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