Schooner 'Bowdoin,' Greenland, 1939


Moored near an iceberg in Kangerdluk Fjord, Greenland, the schooner Bowdoin was on a three-month expedition to study glaciers and deep fjords. Her crew of college and high-school age students did scientific work, including botany, ornithology, oceanography, and glacier studies.

Built in 1921 for Arctic work, the schooner Bowdoin under captain Donald MacMillan was a pioneer in experiential education. MacMillan gave dozens of young men an opportunity to experience the North while working hard aboard the vessel and ashore.

In an interview he gave to the Christian Science Monitor in 1949, MacMillan explained his philosophy: "No man can be successful without loving his work. I like to work with the boys and help them find the thing in life that they will love."

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