Peggotty Bluff

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Peggotty Bluff or Peggotty Camp, is a bluff on the north side and near the head of King Haakon Bay on the wild south coast of South Georgia at 54°9'S 37°17'W.


In 1916, the men of Ernest Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, shipwrecked by the crushing ice, had managed to reach Elephant Island in the South Shetland Islands. Shackleton and a small party set out from the island in a small boat, the James Caird, across the storm-tossed ocean to South Georgia to seek rescue. Cast ashore on the uninhabited south coast, they established a camp, using the upturned James Caird near the head of King Haakon Bay which they called Peggotty Camp, after the family in Charles Dickens's David Copperfield, who lived in a home made from a beached boat.[1]

While they were waiting in this camp, Henry McNish took screws from the boat and put them in the crew's shoes in order that they could walk across ice more easily, and from here they crossed the mountains to the whaling stations of the north coast.

During the South Georgia Survey, 1955-56, King Haakon Bay was surveyed and the approximate position of the camp deduced. The name Peggotty Bluff was given to the feature now described, which is close to Shackleton's campsite.


  • Gazetteer and Map of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands: Peggotty Bluff
  • Shackleton, Ernest (1985) [1919]. South. London: Century. ISBN 0-7126-0111-2. 
  1. Shackleton, p. 191
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