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Camden, New Jersey: Statue of First Man at the North Pole

Expedition leader Robert Peary used to get all the credit, but Matthew Henson is honored with a statue acknowledging he was more-than-likely the first explorer to set foot on the North Pole.

1912 S. Broadway, Camden, NJ
On the south side of the city, in front of the Camden Shipyard and Martime Museum (an old church). I-676 exit 3. Drive west on Morgan St. to the end, then turn right onto S. Broadway. Drive a half-mile north. Statue is on the right.
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First man to reach the North Pole.

Statue of First Man at the North Pole

Although Robert Peary (white man) got the credit, Matthew Henson (black man) was more-than-likely the first explorer to set foot on the North Pole (Peary, leader of the 1909 expedition, was pulled there on a sled).

Exactly one hundred years later -- April 6, 2009 -- a statue of Henson was unveiled outside the Shipyard and Maritime Museum in Camden, New Jersey. The statue by sculptor John Giannotti shows Henson, bundled up and smiling, planting the American flag at the Pole as his faithful dog King looks on (Peary is nowhere to be seen). Camden has no direct connection with Henson, but the building behind his statue does; it was built using 20 tons of ballast stones from the failed Polar expedition of 1892, of which Henson was also a member.

[ Team, 04/21/2011]

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In the region:
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