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George Mallory

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This image depicts George Mallory, wearing his service uniform, in 1916.  It is cropped from a picture with his wife, Ruth.

Considered to be one of the greatest mountain climbers in the world, George Mallory was invited to climb Mount Everest after the end of World War I.  In 1922, He became part of an expedition to the world's highest mountain and achieved heights - just under 27,000 feet - which was a record at the time.

Even more impressive, Mallory and his climbing partners reached that height without using supplemental oxygen.

Geoffrey Winthrop Young, a colleague, described how Mallory climbed:

His movement in climbing was entirely his own. It contradicted all theory. He would set his foot high against any angle of smooth surface, fold his shoulder to his knee, and flow upward and upright again on an impetuous curve.

George Mallory and his climbing partner, Sandy Irvine, were trying to reach Everest’s summit on the 8th of June, 1924.  Noel Odell, the expedition’s cinematographer, saw Mallory and Irvine through a telescope.  The two men were on the mountain's northeast ridge, just a few hundred meters from the top of the world.

Then ... a cloud covered both men and they were never seen alive again. It remains a mystery whether they reached the summit before they disappeared.


Media Credits

Image of George Mallory, in 1916, online courtesy Spartacus.

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