stefansson-wrangel-09-13-044-001

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Knight

September 23st 1923

Dear Mr. Knight,

l have just received your letter of September 5th. It
lessens a little the bitterness of the Wrangell tragedy to
hear directly from you that you are taking the blow as I
would have expected. In tense situations, misunderstandings
arise easily. Yours is the first letter I have received
direct from any of the relatives, but I have heard indirectly
that the others take about the same view as you do.

I feel the tragedy partly directly and partly indirectly
through you and the other families concerned. Lorne was a
dear personal friend of mine and Maurer scarcely less. I
did not know Crawford so well but liked what I knew of him,
and the same was true of Galle. Still it is true that if
the four men lost had been equally dear to me but so uncon-
nected with others that the loss was wholly mine, I think my
sorrow would have been lessened by more than half.

It will only be when we read the diaries of all the
boys that we shall knkow just what happened and why. I do
hope they kept clear and full diaries. And I think the
complete story should be published. The editors both in
Great Britain and America generally take the view that
this is one of the heroic tragedies where the loss is to
those who are intimate and the gain for the whole world,
or at least that part of it which becomes familiar with the
story.

There are some misunderstandings in your letter about
the part that Noice has played. The despatches said that
Lorne had been buried at Wrangell Island. I hope that was
so and believe that you will feel similarly about it when
you have thought it over. It would be following the
tradition of Scott and Shackleton and many others who are
buried where they fell. The Roosevelt's felt that way
about Quentin's grave.

I am not sure whether or not you are under a wrong
impression about the half-hearted nature of Captain
Bernard's attempts last year. Certain Captain Bernard
has wide experience. What you say about the most advan-
tageous course appears to me to be right. On the other

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