Endurance Obituaries |
ROBERT SELBIE . CLARK(11/09/1882 - 29/09/1950 )
BORN :ABERDEEN SCOTLAND
DIED : MURTLE, ABERDEEN. SCOTLAND
NICKNAME : BOB
DUTY : BIOLOGIST
CLARK, SHORTLY BEFORE HIS DEATH IN 1950
Awarded Silver Polar Medal (with clasp)
PHOTO FROM NATIONAL LIBRARY OF SCOTLAND
Robert Clark was born in Aberdeen, Scotland, in 1882 and was the son of William Clark. He was educated at Aberdeen Grammar School and graduated as an M.A. at Aberdeen University in 1908.Three years later in 1911 he attained a further degree B.Sc. (Batchelor of Science) and held the post of Zoologist to the Scottish Oceanographical Laboratory, Edinburgh.
He excelled at sport and was a keen golfer and enjoyed fishing.
In 1912 he was chosen to play cricket for the Scottish National Team. In 1913 he was appointed naturalist in the Plymouth Marine Biological Association
Clark was the Biologist on the expedition. Worlsey, shortly after the Endurance was abandoned wrote:
I felt sorry for Clark, as I lay there that night and realised that he had been obliged to leave on the Endurance the whole of his valuable collection that he had been at such pains to classify and study.
One of the crew wrote about Clark not being the politest of men and always had trouble with the word please. One of the many dittys composed by the men on Elephant Island went:
If I was Mr. Clark,
I would, I would,
Id give up collecting fleas,
And not forget my Please!
In 1916 on his return from the expedition, he married one Christine Ferguson.
Clark served on Minesweepers during WW1 as Lt, in the R.N.V.R. Quite a few of the Endurance crew were to serve on Minesweepers during the war.
In 1919 he returned once more to Plymouth.
In 1924 he was again selected to play for the Scottish National Cricket team. He was a batsman and his Cricket career statistics read:
Matches: 2 Innings: 4 Runs: 19 Catches : 2
In 1925 he returned to his academic studies and gained a D.Sc. (Doctor of Science).
He eventually became a biologist and director of the Fisheries Research station in Torry, Aberdeen. And in 1934 was appointed Superintendent of Scientific Investigations under the Fishery Board. During the course of his scientific work he wrote a number of papers on fish and fisheries.
He retired in 1948 and died 2 years later in 1950 at his home where he and his wife had lived for many years: The Cottage. Murtle, Aberdeenshire. Scotland.
Clark returns to the Endurance after a skiing session on the Weddell Sea Ice. 1915.