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With Byrd at the South Pole (1930)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard E. Byrd ...
Himself - Expedition Commander (as Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd)
Clair D. Alexander ...
Himself - Supply Officer
Bernt Balchen ...
Himself - Aviation Pilot
George H. Black ...
Himself - Seaman and Tractor Man
Quin A. Blackburn ...
Himself - Topographer
Kennard F. Bubier ...
Himself - Aviation Mechanic
Christopher Braathen ...
Himself - Seaman, Ski Man
Jacob Bursey ...
Himself - Seaman, Dog Driver
Arnold H. Clark ...
Himself - Fireman
Francis D. Coman ...
Himself - Medical Officer (as Dr. Francis D. Coman)
Frederick E. Crockett ...
Himself - Dog Driver
Victor H. Czegka ...
Himself - Machinist
Frank T. Davies ...
Himself - Physicist
Joe De Ganahl ...
Himself - Mate
E.J. Demas ...
Himself - Aviation Mechanic


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Drama of human daring and courage at the bottom of the world!





Release Date:

28 June 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

With Byrd at the South Pole: The Story of Little America  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System) (music and narration)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?


The first documentary film to win an Academy Award and the only documentary film to win an Academy Award for Best Cinematography. See more »


National Emblem
Music by Edwin Eugene Bagley
Played when the plane emerges from its hangar and again when it's being loaded
See more »

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User Reviews

breathtaking, daring...and human
30 March 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A few nights ago, my wife and I found ourselves talking about family problems at 3am. Sleep seemed impossible, so we went to the TV to find a more soothing mood. And there, on TCM, we found "With Byrd at the South Pole. Byrd stood nervously before the camera, stiffly, nervously trying to communicate the scope and dangers of his mission. The nervousness was in stark contrast to his absolute sure-handed, calm planning and control in the most trying circumstances.

We marveled at the thoroughness and foresight of his planning, his concern for the safety of his crew--no one died on the mission, despite blizzards, crevasses, 4 straight months of no sunlight,and icy , treacherous footing, with temperatures reaching -72 F.

Most outstanding was the Oscar-winning cinematography, unself-consciously artistic and breathtaking. We often wonder, watching adventure films, how cameramen somehow manage to be on a mountain peak before the climbers, wrestling heavy, awkward burdens of cameras, film and tripods. In this documentary, the visual thrills are endless and revelatory.

One of the most interesting aspects of the film is the quiet dignity, humanity and willing work of the 42 trekkers. There is no evidence of complaining,a quiet competency and absolute dedication to hard work.There is a moving episode as a lead dog, overcomes illness and infirmity in a heartbreaking attempt to stay with the sled dog teams.

This film is less "dramatic" than Flaherty's epics, but totally involving in terms of our emotional involvement.Find this film gem if you can...it's unforgettable.

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