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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 9, Issue 12 (March 1, 1935)

A Unique Monument

page 33

A Unique Monument

(Rly. Publicity photo.) The Scott Monument in Queenstown.

(Rly. Publicity photo.)
The Scott Monument in Queenstown.

IN the beautiful Public Gardens at Queenstown, Lake Wakatipu (one of New Zealand's most popular tourist resorts), embowered on all sides by towering alpine heights of most rugged grandeur, there may be seen the most striking and unique monument, surely, ever raised to the heroic dead. It is a memorial to Captain Scott and those of his fellow explorers who perished on the return journey from the South Pole.

Upon the face of an enormous solitary glacial rock there is inserted a polished marble slab (the stars of the Southern Cross engraved above) with the following inscription thereon:—

With Funds collected by the 42nd
Company Senior Cadets
To Commemorate
The Patient, Stubborn, Invincible
The Loyal Comradeship
And Brilliant Achievement
Captain Robert Falcon Scott,
Dr. Edwin Adrian Wilson, F.Z.S.
Captain Lawrence E. G. Oates,
Inniskilling Dragoons,
Lieut. Henry R. Bowers, R.I.M.
Petty Officer Edgar Evans, R.N.
Who Reached the
South Pole
On January 17th, 1912, and Perished
On the Return Journey.
They Rest in the Great
White Silence of Antarctica
Amid the Scenes of Their Triumph,
Wrapped in the Winding Sheet
Of the Eternal Snows.
Sub Umbra Crucis.

No more fitting environment could be imagined for such a monument. The Government Gardens are alone an inspiration—lovely for situation beyond compare.

Standing before this unique yet most eloquent shrine, the rapt beholder, in silent homage, has impressed unforgettably upon his imagination something of the unfading glory, tragic to the full though it be, of that last scene in the Great Adventure. And withdrawing one's self reluctantly from the sacred spot, overlooked by the towering peak of “Ben Lomond,” “The Remarkables,” and other alpine giants that look down from their dizzy altitudes, there is carried away not only the most vivid of memories, but also a thrill of soul caught from that eloquent tribute which shall tell forth for all time the glory of those heroic souls who sleep amid the eternal solitudes of the Great White Silence. New Zealand—“Last, Loneliest, Loveliest” of British Possessions—was the final port of departure of the explorers for the Antarctic (as also the first land reached by the ship on her return). And as the blue shore-line of Otago Peninsula dipped below the horizon, Captain Scott and his companions, heading out into the mystery and the tragedy of the frozen South, would have their last glimpse of civilisation. So it is meet that New Zealand should have provided this beautiful memorial (not her only one to the explorers) away up there by the shining waters of her inland sea—Wakatipu, enfolded by the mighty ramparts of the Southern Alps.

No one visiting Queenstown should miss seeing the monument. It is a splendid tribute to whoever conceived the idea.

(Rly. Publicity photo.) Queenstown, South Island, New Zealand.

(Rly. Publicity photo.)
Queenstown, South Island, New Zealand.