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98/55/1-1 Harness, cotton / rope / wood, made and used by Charles Francis Laseron during Sir Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition, Australia / Antarctica, 1911-1913. Click to enlarge.

Safety harness made by Charles Laseron and used during Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition.

Made
This harness was made and used by Charles Francis Laseron (1887-1959) during Sir Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914. Laseron worked as taxidermist, biological collector, and general scientific assistant. This expedition, along with the British, Australian and New Zealand Antarctic Expedition 1929-1931, was one of the most important Australian scientific expeditions of the 20th century, laying the basis for Australia's later claim to almost 42 per cent of the …

Summary

Object No.

98/55/1-1

Object Statement

Harness, cotton / rope / wood, made and used by Charles Francis Laseron during Sir Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition, Australia / Antarctica, 1911-1913

Physical Description

Harness, cotton / rope / wood, made and used by Charles Francis Laseron during Sir Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition, Australia / Antarctica, 1911-1913

This harness consists of a wide, beige coloured, woven cotton waist band with a thickly woven cylindrical rope attached to its middle. Two, thinner, shoulder straps of the same material are attached to the outside of the waistband. The harness seems to have been hand made and hand stitched areas are visible around the top of the waistband. A chest strap has been hand sewn onto the shoulder strap which sits across the left side of the chest. This strap fastens to the other shoulder strap which sits on the right hand side of the chest, with a wooden toggle.

Dimensions

Width

690 mm

Production

Made

Notes

All items were once the property of Charles Laseron. There is no specific information which is relevant to object design.

History

Notes

This object was used by Charles Francis Laseron from 1911-1913 during Sir Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition, Australia, 1911-1914.

Charles Francis Laseron (1887-1959) was born in Wisconsin, USA, and arrived in Australia with his parents in January 1891. His father, David, was an Episcopalian clergyman, and in 1896 he took charge of a parish at Lithgow, NSW. Charles received his early schooling at Lithgow but was later educated at St Andrew's Cathedral Choir School, Sydney.

Laseron trained in geology at Sydney Technical College and later lectured there, becoming. The Sydney Technological Museum engaged Laseron in 1906 as a collector of botanical and geological specimens. Laseron took leave from the Museum to take part in Sir Douglas Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition, where he worked as taxidermist, biological collector, and general scientific assistant from 1911-1913. He was awarded the Polar medal for his work in the Antarctic and later published an account of his Antarctic experiences in 'South with Mawson' (1947).

On his return to Australia, Laseron joined the Australian Imperial Forces, and was wounded at the Gallipoli landing. He subsequently returned to Sydney in 1916, where he resumed work at the Sydney Technological Museum. He rose to secure the position of Officer-in-Charge of the Applied Art collection. In this capacity he wrote papers and collected a range of ceramic and porcelain artefacts and was instrumental in establishing the New South Wales Applied Art Trust. Laseron was forced to resign in 1929 after a long-running dispute with curator Arthur Penfold, who in 1927 launched a departmental inquiry into his position. Laseron later became a dealer and auctioneer and during World War II returned to the AIF where he became an Instructor in Map Reading and Topography with the Commonwealth Military Forces.

REFS:

Australian Dictionary of Biography Online, http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A090677b.htm?hilite=laseron

Davison, Graeme and Kimberley Webber (eds), 'Yesterday's Tomorrow: The Powerhouse Museum and its Precursors 1880-2005', Powerhouse Publishing, Sydney, 2005

Laseron, Charles, 'South with Mawson: reminiscences of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition', Angus & Robertson, Sydney, 1957

Cite this Object

Harvard

Safety harness made by Charles Laseron and used during Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition. 2022, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 1 December 2022, <https://ma.as/163575>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/163575 |title=Safety harness made by Charles Laseron and used during Mawson's Australasian Antarctic Expedition. |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=1 December 2022 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}