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My Hero!

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Mrs. Chippy and Perce Blackborow
Photography by Frank Hurley


I think it best we recall, from time to time, those Felis catus individuals who have established themselves in history. Such a cat is Mrs. Chippy, who bravely accompanied the Homo sapiens and Canis familiaris members of Sir Ernest H. Shackleton's expedition to Antarctica in 1914.

Let me assure you (lest you think otherwise) that whereas many people of various species assume Mrs. Chippy has long since passed away, such is not the case. When exploring the Antarctic those many years ago, he — as "Mrs." Chippy is in fact a male cat — was, according to reliable sources, embarked upon his very first lifetime. Hence, in all likelihood, he remains with us today!

For a fascinating account of Mrs. Chippy's singular adventure 87 years ago, I recommend Caroline Alexander's book Mrs. Chippy's Last Adventure: The Remarkable Journal of Shackleton's Polar-bound Cat (Harper Collins Publishers; New York, New York, United States of America; 1997). Ms Alexander has reproduced, for all to see, Mrs. Chippy's very own day-to-day recollections of that fabulous journey.

Now I ask you, dear readers of The Cat Site, to examine your hearts and see if you don't believe as I do: that Mrs. Chippy should, albeit posthumously according to Homo sapiens standards, be awarded some recognition for his daring exploit. Thus, the poll which you find above.

Thank you all for your kind attention to this matter. Let us pause for a moment and remember Mrs. Chippy, who is my hero — and I hope he will be your own, too.


[Felis catus]
post #2 of 14
Thread Starter 
I was away from home for a few hours and left my computer system running. Apparently, Michaela has been paying much closer attention to how these things work than I'd previously thought!

Well, she did pretty good — considering this was her first-ever thread on an inter-net message board. She made only one spelling error, "Antarctic" in the poll choices coming out "Antartic." But she got it right in the message itself, so she probably just made a typograhpical error. And, I really think she meant "grant" rather than "trust" in the poll.

In the event, I can't blame Michaela for wanting some say-so here at The Cat Site. Were I you, I'd keep a closer watch on this board just in case any of your cats decide to post messages or start threads.


post #3 of 14
What a wonderful story - I learned something new today -
Thanks for the information - Even though I voted, I think Mrs. Chippy should get all the awards!
post #4 of 14
Michaela/Mr.Cat; Thanks for posting this.

I voted for the veterinary scholarship fund (which is leading)

I had read about this "phenominal feline" a few years ago; thanks for reminding us. :

MoMo(that Monster Boy) would like me to ask if Michaela is "seeing anyone" at the current time? He made me go back to a pic of her and he thinks she is "The Cat's Meo-o-o-o-o-owow!!"

post #5 of 14
Forget Mrs. Chippy! I think Michaela should be given her own screen name! She even managed to post 2 images in one posting, something I've been unable to master!
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Michaela wishes to extend her gratitude and thanks to those who have replied to her original post! (She doesn't see any need to make this post herself, as I'm here to do it for her.) Presently, Michaela is contemplating the matter of a personal user-name and would welcome suggestions.

She further thanks our moderators for having corrected the typographical error which had appeared in the poll choices. I thank them, too!

Michaela also wishes to let it be known that, at present, she is not "seeing anyone" in particular. Further, she proclaims her willingness as Queen of this household to grant audiences to any of her feline brethren who wish to apply.

Lastly (for now), Michaela recognizes not only the vital contributions made by Mrs. Chippy to the Shackleton expedition but extends her appreciation to those Canis familiaris (dog) individuals who also braved the Antarctic:

"Above all else, the men were diverted by the care and exercise of the sledging dogs. These were not huskies but a mixed collection of big dogs brought out from Canada, where they had shown that they were adapted to the cold. Although the men continued to put the dogs, now divided into six teams, through their paces, they came to think of the dogs as pets more than working animals.

"After the Endurance was beset [the expedition's ship becoming fatally trapped in ice], the dogs were housed on the ice beside the ship in ice kennels, dubbed by the sailors 'dogloos.' Mrs. Chippy, the carpenter's cat, slept the winter away with the sailors in the fo'c's'le, the ship's forward quarters." (See URL http://www.amnh.org/exhibitions/shackleton/home.html.)

[by] Mr. Cat


P.S.: See image of Sir Ernest below.
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
Both Michaela and I have decided that with more than 1,000 registered members of The Cat Site, five replies to her thread just won't hack it!


post #8 of 14
i voted for the last option;

By establishing a trust in his name for students of veterinary medicine.

and you're welcome, Mr.Cat and Michaela

post #9 of 14
Mr. Cat,

I voted for the trust for veterinary students. Mrs. Chippy and Sir Ernest are amazing! And so is Lady Michaela. I'm surprised she doesn't have many male suitors calling as her beauty is remarkable!
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
There is a male suitor who calls upon Michaela! He's a black-and-white cat and is very polite and refined. Michaela and he meet at the door and visit through the screen.


Michaela is looking for her tiara, so the situation must be serious!

post #11 of 14
Michaela: MoMo has asked me to relay this message to "That Black and White Dude":

To Whom it my concern: I am known as MoMo THE MONSTER BOY for good reason!

Although I am "one heck of a lover" I can be "one Hell of a fighter if I have to be .....
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
I've passed MoMo's message on to Michaela, who is feigning disinterest but who is (I'm sure) pondering the merits of guys fighting over her.


Now, there's a psychological phenomenon worth exploring! As the song title affirms, "It Ain't Me, Girl!"

post #13 of 14

Why would Michaela be interested in any suitors? She knows she already has one guy at home hook, line, and sinker!
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
This is true.

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