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Introduction

On 17 January 1775 Captain James Cook landed at Possession Bay, South Georgia and claimed it for Great Britain. This is known as Possession Day and is marked by a ceremony at Government House, Stanley each year.

The waters around South Georgia and the other Dependencies were rich in whales and on 16 November 1904 Carl Anton Larsen, a Norwegian whaler, founded Grytviken Whaling Station on South Georgia.

On 21 July 1908 Royal Letters Patent consolidated British claims in the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic regions, including South Georgia, as Dependencies of the Falkland Islands.

Most records held relate to South Georgia. They concern whaling and sealing activity, the issue of licenses, and the civil administration established at King Edward Point in 1912 consisting of a magistrate, customs office, radio station, meteorological station and post office. From these offices activities at the various whaling stations around the Island were supervised. There was also a government naturalist stationed there together with the shore base and laboratories for the Discovery Expeditions.

For the South Georgia Shipping Register see ONLINE COLLECTIONS - SHIPPING - SHIPPING REGISTERS

Following are scans of some of the records held.

 

World War II

pdfSGA-WW2-1-1 Staff Officer Freetown. Requests that movements of foreign whale factory ships should be reported by telegraph. Reporting officer. Correspondence to and from.pdf(4.23 MB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-2 Falkland Islands labour required by Messrs Salvesen and Coy for the 1939-40 whaling season.pdf(659.76 KB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-3 Question of installing some form of fixed defence in South Georgia.pdf(7.56 MB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-4 South Georgia defences. Question of installing some form of fixed defence in South Georgia. Part II.pdf(1.78 MB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-5 Permission granted to factory Thorshammer and seven catchers to operate from South Georgia for remainder of 1940-41 season.pdf(457.35 KB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-6 South Georgia. 1. Norwegian Detachment. 2. Defences.pdf(4.04 MB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-7 Report on visit of Colonel C D Allderidge Officer Commanding Troops to South Georgia.pdf(448.47 KB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-8 Proposed construction of emergency wireless sets at Grytviken and Leith Harbours South Georgia.pdf(926.1 KB)

pdfSGA-WW2-1-9 South Georgia. Norwegian Detachment complaints individual.pdf(198.81 KB)

 

Disclaimer

While every effort has been taken to ensure accuracy the Jane Cameron National Archives does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in these records.

Copyright guide

Copies of government records may be used freely for private research and educational purposes.  If material is to be used for commercial publication, exhibition or broadcast the written permission of the Jane Cameron National Archives must first be obtained. Whenever material from the Jane Cameron National Archives is reproduced in any form or in any medium, the user must acknowledge the Jane Cameron National Archives as the source and give all document references.  For non-government records it is your responsibility as the user to ensure that copyright is not infringed and any infringement that does occur is your responsibility.