Presentation on theme: "Hi I am Peter Henson – I live in the north of Greenland."— Presentation transcript:
1 Hi I am Peter Henson – I live in the north of Greenland. I am a unique individual – and my family story is amazing….Let me tell you about it…And about my links to the wider world
2 I live in Qaanaaq with my extended family who are nearly all Inuit / American descendents.
3 This is the small settlement of Qaanaaq with its colourful wooden homes with iron sheet roofs. You can sea the icebergs floating in the sea behind them.
4 Qaanaaq has the most northerly restaurant in the world!!
5 The hunting of seals, polar bears, birds, narwhals and walrus provides the only means of survival in a community which consists of one town with around 600 inhabitants and five settlements.The settlement of Siorapaluk is the northernmost community on earth,and is also well-known as the fictitious birthplace of Miss Smilla in the novel and film Smilla's Sense of Snow.
6 This is me – a Polar Inuit waiting at a seal breathing hole with my harpoonat a seal breathing holein the sea ice at sunset.
7 Qaanaaq – is in the north of the country called north Greenland Nuuk – main town – capital of Greenland
8 Qaanaaq is in the country called Greenland Nuuk is the capital of Greenland. The missionary Hans Egede founded Nuuk in 1728 as the very first town in Greenland. Greenland has been semi-autonomous since 1979,but Denmark remains in charge of foreign and defence policy for the 56,000 islanders.
9 This is GreenlandThis is the USAMy great grandfather is really famousTo many people he is a role model - a hero!
10 My great grandfather was Matthew A. Henson – I am Peter Henson remember.He was a polar explorer
11 This is my great grandmother Akatingwahwhen Matthew left Greenland for the last time in 1909 he never returnedso never saw my grandfather … his then unborn sonAnaukaq
12 Matthew returned to New York He married a girl called Lucy Ross.They lived together for 50 yearsbut they had no childrenSo we Greenland Hensons are his only surviving blood relations
13 In 1909 - my great grandfather Matthew Henson was the first man to reach the North Pole He got there 45 minutes before his colleague –Robert Peary.
14 Matthew HensonMatthew’s achievements were ignored for a long timeHis co-explorer Robert Peary got all the creditBecause Peary was a superior officer and Peary was whiteRobert Peary
15 Matthew was a Black American. It wasn't until 1937, at age seventy, that Henson got some of the attention he deserved.In that year he was made an honorary member of the famed Explorers Club in New York.
16 On April 6th 1988 Matthew and Roses’ bodies were reinterred with full Presidential Honours in Arlington National Cemetery.
17 April 6, 1909 American explorers Robert Peary and Matthew Henson reach the top of the world. Now All American children Black, White and Inuit learn about both heroes.
18 ". even if he is a negro, is an American "...even if he is a negro, is an American..." In 1909 the newspapers were ‘racist’ in their attitude to this story.For Black Americans reading Henson’s story was life changingHis life story blew my mind. And convinced me that black people could be heroes too.
19 Matthew is a hero nowAnd we his surviving descendants are proud of himWe live on in Greenland and we are proud of Akatingwah too.
20 It is a small worldAnd everyone has their place in itWe all depend on each otherAnd must get on togetherThere is nowhere else to go.