Frank Wild & achievements


Ros Bowden: Well Frank Wild — whom you speak so highly of — was obviously a considerable person in your group. Why do you think he hasn’t been recognised like the others?

Moyes: He should — I was always hoping that when they named an Australian base they’d call it Frank Wild Base. But they never quite realised the value. You see, uh, when he — it was due to his resourcefulness that we landed there. Even when Captain Davis didn’t want us to and Captain Davis was Second in Command you see, and uh, Wild overcame that and we landed there and we discovered so much new land there that when it was added to what Mawson’s own party at base one had found, it meant that the Australian expedition had discovered more new land than any other great expedition. And you can see that largely was due to Frank Wild’s work. He was a wonderful man.

A writer in England has called him ‘The Antarctic Bridesmaid’ you know. There was the saying ‘always a bridesmaid, never a bride’. Because he was always just about at the top down there. You see he was in Scott’s first expedition when he did one of the bravest things I have ever heard of, he did so well, that when Shackleton was going to go to the Pole he wrote and asked Frank Wild to come with him and he was one of the three men who got within a hundred miles of the Pole with Shackleton.

Then he came as Second in Command to Mawson expedition and then he was there again with the Endurance expedition. He was the man who was left in charge of the men on Elephant Island and then he was with the Quest, the last man to see Shackleton, to bury Shackleton. A very wonderful man Frank Wild, but he did so much for Australia I think Australia should have remembered him in some way.