The Softer Side of Robert E. Peary

Story posted September 20, 2006

Proceeds from the sale of the Peary doll will support outreach initiatives.

The 100th anniversary of Robert E. Peary's 1908-09 North Pole Expedition is approaching, and Bowdoin students, staff, and faculty at The Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum and Arctic Studies Center are busy planning exhibits, publications, and serious and lighthearted programs and projects to celebrate.

One project has already been completed: the creation of a soft sculpture doll in the likeness of Robert E. Peary, Class of 1877, featuring a tag listing key aspects of the Arctic explorer's life.

The doll is dressed in traditional Inuit clothing and carries a patched American flag. Peary's wife Josephine made an American flag, which he carried with him on all of his expeditions. Each time he reached his farthest north point, he cut a piece from the flag and put it in a cache. When he reached the North Pole he cut a long strip from the flag and left it at the northernmost point on the earth.

The doll was created exclusively for the Arctic Museum by Creative Station, LLC/Famous Be'an® Collectibles with funds donated by the Friends of the College Fund. Emma Bonanomi, Class of 2005, who was the Museum's 2004-05 Gibbons Fellow, helped develop the doll and wrote its tag.

The doll is available in the Arctic Museum's shop and sells for $16. Proceeds will be used to support other outreach initiatives.

The Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum is located in Hubbard Hall on the Bowdoin College campus, Brunswick, Maine. Admission is free. Museum hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sundays 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.; and closed Mondays and national holidays.

For more information about the Museum or the Arctic program, call 207-725-3416.

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