James Cook Essay, Research Paper
Captain James Cook~ World’s Greatest Explorer
Captain James Cook, an English Navigator and explorer, discovered Austria and the Hawaiian Islands on three famous voyages through the south pacific. Cook became an explorer because of his love of adventure and curiosity about distant lands and their people. Cook was born in Yorkshire, England in the year 1728. Then in the year 1755, Cook joined the British Navy. As a member of the Navy, he became an expert surveyor and astronomer. He was privileged in many situations; for instance, he was the man to help map the Saint Lawrence River and the coasts of Labrador and Newfoundland.
His skill in sounding, surveying, and charting this river won for him the post of marine surveyor of the coasts of Newfoundland and Labrador . When Cook reported a solar eclipse off the coast of North America, he soon became known as Astronomer and a mathematician.
Cook set out in 1768 on his first voyage through the pacific on a ship called the Endeavor in search for the “Terra Australia’s”, which was believed to be a great continent that might have existed in the far south, he was determined to find whether or not it existed. Besides heading out in search for the unknown land, Cook also wanted to observe the eclipse of the planet Venus and find the Cape of Good Hope. He spent six months circumnavigating and mapping the Coast of New Zealand, but because of the hostility of the natives, Cook was unable to explore the inner land. Not only did he sail along New Zealand, but he also wandered into Tahiti where he had discovered new land. Cook also explored the East Coast of Austria in which he named to Britain. After exploring the coast of New Guinea, Cook decided to return home for a break.
In 1771, Cook set sail from England, this time with two ships, the “Resolution” and the “Adventure”. This time, he was in search to prove that a great continent in the South Pacific Ocean did exist. This voyage was recorded as his longest voyage of all. It is said that this voyage lasted for three years and that he traveled about 70,000 miles. While on this voyage, he sailed across the Antarctic Circle; he was the first European to do so. Unfortunately, Cook did not travel far enough South to discover the true Antarctica Continent. He also discovered New Caledonia and the Cook Islands, which he named after himself.
On his third expedition, which was in 1776, he set sail with two new ships looking for the Northwest Passage. These two ships were the “Resolution” and the “Discovery”. The Northwest Passage was a way to sail from Northern Atlantic Ocean to the Northern Pacific Ocean. On this voyage, Cook had discovered the Hawaiian Islands in 1778. As he sailed along the West Coast of Northern America, from Oregon to the Artic Circle, he surveyed the area. During this time, he also sailed through the Bering Strait. Beyond the Bering Strait, he found that a solid wall of ice blocked the passage. Forced to turn back, he returned to Hawaii. He had won the friendship of the people there by his sensible and kind treatment.
From West to East, Cook explored the entire far Southern Pacific. He mapped many old islands, but he also discovered many new ones at the same time. Cook was eager to make as many new discoveries as he could, each and every time he set sail, he only dreamed of coming across land that had not yet been discovered, and most of the time, he lived his dream.
Cook made extensive explorations of the northwestern coast of North America, seeking an inlet. Trouble arose, however, when one of the ship’s boats was stolen. Cook took some men ashore to recover the boat. A fight with some islanders occurred because of the theft, and on February 14, 1779 Hawaiian natives stabbed Cook to death. Without Cook, The expedition arrived back in England in October of 1780.
Like Captain James Cook, they’re where many other explorers that voyaged out into the unknown sea in search to find a given destination. Not knowing if it had existed they set sail anyway. Cook knew he was in danger each time he set sail, but he was known as one of the greatest captains of all time. Cook was the first one to prevent the spread of scurvy, which is a deficiency of Vitamin C, aboard each of his ships. Scurvy was the main cause for most deaths that occurred on any given ship while at sea.
Captain James Cook was an immense voyager, as he is now, he will continue to be remembered as one of the greatest explorers of all time. In only three separate voyages, he discovered more of this land, planet earth, than any other man alone. Cook will always be remembered for his fascinating work and discoveries, and when we look back on the past, he will certainly be one of the most important men in the history of our planet.
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