Ellsworth, Lincoln

Usage Conditions Apply
The Smithsonian Institution Archives welcomes personal and educational use of its collections unless otherwise noted. For commercial uses, please contact photos@si.edu.

Narrow Your Results


Filter Your Results

Smithsonian Secretaries Information

Close Browse records and papers of the Smithsonian Secretaries, from 1846 until today. Pre-set filters help narrow searches by individuals who have held that office.

Expeditions Information

Close Browse records and papers documenting scientific and collecting expeditions either affiliated with the Smithsonian, or with which Smithsonian researchers participated. Pre-set filters help narrow searches by geographic regions predominantly represented in expedition records.

Professional Societies Information

Close Browse records of professional societies closely associated with the Smithsonian, that focus on areas of scientific research and museum studies. Pre-set filters help narrow searches by major topics and disciplines.

Biographical History

Lincoln Ellsworth (1880-1951) was born on May 12, 1880, in Chicago, Illinois. He studied both at Yale and Columbia University. After college he was a surveyor for the Grand Trunk Pacific Railroad. His true passion, however, was exploration. In 1925, he participated in his first Arctic expedition, which was to travel to the North Pole. It was the Amundsen-Ellsworth expedition, which only lasted 25 days although they never reached the North Pole. A year later, he tried the expedition to the North Pole again and finally reached it on May 12, 1926. He wanted to be the first to reach the North Pole, but the U.S. Navy beat him by three days. By the end of his career he traveled to Antarctica. On November 23, 1935, he successfully made his trans-Antarctic flight, becoming the first man to fly across Antarctica. On May 29, 1929, before he made his trans-Antarctic flight, he was honored the Congressional Gold Medal for his North Pole expedition. He died in New York City on May 26, 1951.

Birth Date


Death Date





Personal name