Thursday, January 09, 2020

January 9th in stamps Victor Emmanuel II, Umberto I, Ernest Shackleton Nimrod Expedition

Here are some events that happened on January 9th. It could be an event or a person that died or was born on that day


1878 Died: Victor Emmanuel II of Italy (b. 1820)

Victor Emmanuel II (14 March 1820 – 9 January 1878) was King of Sardinia from 1849 until 17 March 1861, when he assumed the title of King of Italy and became the first king of a united Italy since the 6th century, a title he held until his death in 1878. Borrowing from the old Latin title Pater Patriae of the Roman emperors, the Italians gave him the epithet of Father of the Fatherland (Italian: Padre della Patria).

Born in Turin as the eldest son of Charles Albert, Prince of Carignano, and Maria Theresa of Austria, he fought in the First Italian War of Independence (1848-49) before being made King of Piedmont-Sardinia following his father's abdication. He appointed Camillo Benso, Count of Cavour, as his Prime Minister, and he consolidated his position by suppressing the republican left. In 1855, he sent an expeditionary corps to side with French and British forces during the Crimean War; the deployment of Italian troops to the Crimea, and the gallantry shown by them in the Battle of the Chernaya (16 August 1855) and in the siege of Sevastopol led the Kingdom of Sardinia to be among the participants at the peace conference at the end of the war, where it could address the issue of the Italian unification to other European powers. This allowed Victor Emmanuel to ally himself with Napoleon III, Emperor of France. France had supported Sardinia in the Second Italian War of Independence, resulting in liberating Lombardy from Austrian rule.

Victor Emmanuel supported the Expedition of the Thousand (1860–1861) led by Giuseppe Garibaldi, which resulted in the rapid fall of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies in southern Italy. However, Victor Emmanuel halted Garibaldi when he appeared ready to attack Rome, still under the Papal States, as it was under French protection. In 1860, Tuscany, Modena, Parma and Romagna decided to side with Sardinia-Piedmont, and Victor Emmanuel then marched victoriously in the Marche and Umbria after the victorious battle of Castelfidardo over the Papal forces. He subsequently met Garibaldi at Teano, receiving from him the control of southern Italy and becoming the first King of Italy on 17 March 1861.

In 1866, the Third Italian War of Independence allowed Italy to annex Veneto. In 1870, Victor Emmanuel also took advantage of the Prussian victory over France in the Franco-Prussian War to taking over the Papal States after the French withdrew. He entered Rome on 20 September 1870 and set up the new capital there on 2 July 1871. He died in Rome in 1878, and was buried in the Pantheon.

The Italian national monument Altare della Patria (or Vittoriano) in Rome was built in his honor.

Stamps from Italy depicting Victor Emmanuel II

Italy # 21  - King Victor Emmanuel II

Italy # 31  - King Victor Emmanuel II

Italy Victor Emmanuel II of Italy, King of Italy

Victor Emmanuel II



1878 – Umberto I becomes King of Italy.

Umberto I (14 March 1844 – 29 July 1900), nicknamed the Good (Italian: il Buono), was the King of Italy from 9 January 1878 until his assassination on 29 July 1900.
Umberto's reign saw Italy attempt colonial expansion into the Horn of Africa, successfully gaining Eritrea and Somalia despite being defeated by Abyssinia at the Battle of Adwa in 1896. In 1882, he approved the Triple Alliance with the German Empire and Austria-Hungary.

He was deeply loathed in leftist circles because of his conservatism and support of the Bava-Beccaris massacre in Milan. He was especially hated by anarchists, who attempted to assassinate him during the first year of his reign. He was killed by another anarchist, Gaetano Bresci, two years after the Bava-Beccaris massacre.

Stamps from Italy depicting Umberto I

1879 Kingdom Italy, Umberto I 25 cent blue

1889 Umberto I 1 Lira

1891 Kingdom Umberto I  5 Lire Carminio & Blue


1909 – Ernest Shackleton, leading the Nimrod Expedition to the South Pole,plants the British flag 97 nautical miles (180 km; 112 mi) from the South Pole, the farthest anyone had ever reached at that time.

Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton (15 February 1874 – 5 January 1922) was a British Antarctic explorer who led three British expeditions to the Antarctic. He was one of the principal figures of the period known as the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration.

Born in Kilkea, County Kildare, Ireland, Shackleton and his Anglo-Irish family moved to Sydenham in suburban south London when he was ten. His first experience of the polar regions was as third officer on Captain Robert Falcon Scott's Discovery expedition of 1901–1904, from which he was sent home early on health grounds, after he and his companions Scott and Edward Adrian Wilson set a new southern record by marching to latitude 82°S. During the Nimrod expedition of 1907–1909, he and three companions established a new record Farthest South latitude at 88°S, only 97 geographical miles (112 statute miles or 180 kilometres) from the South Pole, the largest advance to the pole in exploration history. Also, members of his team climbed Mount Erebus, the most active Antarctic volcano. For these achievements, Shackleton was knighted by King Edward VII on his return home.

The Nimrod Expedition of 1907–09, otherwise known as the British Antarctic Expedition, was the first of three expeditions to the Antarctic led by Ernest Shackleton. Its main target, among a range of geographical and scientific objectives, was to be first to the South Pole. This was not attained, but the expedition's southern march reached a Farthest South latitude of 88° 23' S, just 97.5 nautical miles (180.6 km; 112.2 mi) from the pole. This was by far the longest southern polar journey to that date and a record convergence on either Pole. A separate group led by Welsh Australian geology professor Edgeworth David reached the estimated location of the South Magnetic Pole, and the expedition also achieved the first ascent of Mount Erebus, Antarctica's second highest volcano.

The expedition lacked governmental or institutional support, and relied on private loans and individual contributions. It was beset by financial problems and its preparations were hurried. Its ship, Nimrod, was less than half of the size of Robert Falcon Scott's 1901–04 expedition ship Discovery, and Shackleton's crew lacked relevant experience. Controversy arose from Shackleton's decision to base the expedition in McMurdo Sound, close to Scott's old headquarters, in contravention of a promise to Scott that he would not do so. Nevertheless, although the expedition's profile was initially much lower than that of Scott's six years earlier, its achievements attracted nationwide interest and made Shackleton a public hero. The scientific team, which included the future Australasian Antarctic Expedition leader Douglas Mawson, carried out extensive geological, zoological and meteorological work. Shackleton's transport arrangements, based on Manchurian ponies, motor traction, and sled dogs, were innovations which, despite limited success, were later copied by Scott for his ill-fated Terra Nova Expedition.

On his return, Shackleton overcame the Royal Geographical Society's initial scepticism about his achievements and received many public honours, including a knighthood from King Edward VII. He made little financial gain from the expedition and eventually depended on a government grant to cover its liabilities. Within three years his southernmost record had been surpassed, as first Amundsen and then Scott reached the South Pole. In his own moment of triumph, Amundsen nevertheless observed: "Sir Ernest Shackleton's name will always be written in the annals of Antarctic exploration in letters of fire".

Farthest South refers the most southerly latitude reached by explorers before the conquest of the South Pole in 1911. Significant steps on the road to the pole were the discovery of lands south of Cape Horn in 1619, Captain James Cook's crossing of the Antarctic Circle in 1773, and the earliest confirmed sightings of the Antarctic mainland in 1820. From the late 19th century onward, the quest for Farthest South latitudes became in effect a race to reach the pole, which culminated in Roald Amundsen's success in December 1911.

Stamps from Great Britain and British Antarctica depicting Shackleton and or his expedition


GB 2016 Shackleton Expedition set

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