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[2008 Henson Home Page]
Aviaq Henson going to North Pole!

Dear Verne.

100th Anniversary
I have wonderful news about Matthew Henson and his 100th years anniversary. I am going to North Pole! To celebrate with Dr. Allen Counter during his plan. We will be many who will go to North Pole on April 6th 2009. We will be: my father Vittus Henson and his brothers Ajako, Uusaqqak & Qillaq Henson. And Maassannguaq Avataq’s son, our translator Navarana, and two of Robert Peary’s grandchildren and Ootaaqs grandchild will also on journey with us. Otherwise Americans will travel with Dr. Allen Counter. And some journalist will also be on journey.

Matthew Henson Stamp
I have another great news. I have sent a suggestion to Greenland Post (national stamp and post office) to let them publish a stamp of Matthew Henson. And they agree with me, they will publish it on our national day June 21st 2009. The reason I have sent them a suggestion, was that they have published a stamp of Robert Peary in 2005, and I want them to publish of his companion Matthew Henson, because Matthew deserve it as much as Robert Peary.

The year of 2009 is going to be a great year.

Yours sincerely,

Aviaq Henson, Nuuk - Greenland
See also: Aviaq family photos / See also: More about Aviaq

"2009 is going to
be a great year"

Matthew Henson Stamp
I have sent a suggestion to Greenland National stamp and Post Office to let them publish a stamp of Matthew Henson. And they agree with me, they will publish it on our national day
June 21st 2009.


Matthew Henson's grandson Avataq died
Dear Verne, I looked up your posted website about me, wow, it looks great, it is so fun to read about myself on the web. I will send you some pictures after North Pole. And I will send you updates about the trip. Maybe, you can remember that Anaukaq – Matthew’s son have had 5 sons: Avataq, Uusaqqak, Ajako, Vittus and Qillaq, but unfortunately, the oldest son Avataq got in peace this summer, he was 74 years old when he died.

It was sad, if he was still alive, he would join us to the Pole. His son Maassannguaq will go to the North Pole for him. I think we will have lots of memories of Anaukaq and Avataq and not least of Matthew during the event.

I was in Los Angeles in March 2008, what a great country. We were 24 on a study tour from Teachers College in Greenland. When I someday come to California again, maybe I will visit you, It is could be nice if I could see you.

Yours sincerely, Aviaq
About Aviaq Henson
Matthew Henson's direct descendents all live in Greenland. Over 100 years ago Matt Henson and Akatingwah had a son named Anaukaq who married a woman named Aviaq and they had 5 sons. Aviaq was the great mother of the Henson-Inuit family making her name, Aviaq, a very special one. Today Aviaq Henson in Nuuk, Greenland is a daughter of Matt Henson's grandson Vittus Henson. She is training in Greenland to be a teacher, will graduate in 2009. More about Henson family tree...
Subject: Dear Matthew Henson Website / Date: Wed, 24 Dec 2008

Uuminnga aduarduggan damaiha qamannga pihuming Juudlimi pidluaqugikka. Aadaga Matthew, eqqaidlugu, ukiut 100-ut maduma hiorgnatigun, Juudlihiorramaneranni.

Qitdlaq Henson.
Greenland adventurers seek funds to reach Pole
"I feel that Greenland should celebrate the 100th anniversary...There are a group of us in Uummannaq that are all ready to go." Hammeken says.
[Full story at this Greenland newspaper]
1909—2009 is the 100 year anniversary
of Henson & Peary reaching the North Pole

Friday November 21, 2008

My English is far from perfect - but I'm right now very busy trying to plan to dogsled to the North Pole in the track of Peary, Henson, Uutaaq and the 3 other polar eskimoes.

Here the link to a Greenlandic newspaper Sermitsiaq, about the plan: http://sermitsiaq.gl/indland/article59705.ece?lang=EN

I'm very much in a hurry to try to succeed so I'm trying to contact as many as possible so Peary, Henson and Uutaaq can be celebrated propperly. All the best.

Ole Jorgen Hammeken
from Uummannaq in Greenland.

"Henson is one of my greatest heroes..."

A letter from Mt. Everest climber Ed Webster

2008 Kids Art & Literature contest

April Russo is the teacher of this delightful 3rd grade class. That's right—third graders!

While these are the youngest kids yet to send in artwork and essays their efforts are just as heart warming. And I was surprised at how well written are some of the Henson biographies. More
Click on the picture to learn more about these Henson motivated 3rd graders

Our new President
Barack Obama is as nice a person as Matthew Henson was. As Americans we are fortunate to have him as our President.

Click for larger image

Matthew Henson's direct descendants all live in Greenland
Aviaq Henson is studying to be a teacher. She lives with her family in Nuuk, Greenland.
Aviaq is traveling to Qaanaaq in north western Greenland. This is the area where Henson & Peary collected men & supplies for their expeditions 100 years ago. Your class can send
email or even mail letters to Aviaq Henson. More...
Aviaq 2006  • Laila Henson in Nuuk Aviaq Henson in Qaanaaq Henson Family tree

To the North Pole with Matt!
Student artwork celebrates Henson & Peary

2007—Alene Davis
submitted student artwork last year (see below), and has blessed us again this year with 16 new ones (see at right):

"I moved to Texarkana ISD School to start a new job. I am teaching 8th grade technology applications and of course I took them to the North Pole with Peary and Henson. They loved it and had never heard of him before. I have 140+ students here and after the 68 question virtual field trip, I had them create a Paint about their experience. I selected the best of show and have sent them to you."


Matthew Henson by Sophia

2006—Trey is a student of Technology/Computer teacher Alene Davis at Mae Luster Stephens Junior High School in Texas. Trey's charming update of the 1986 Henson & Peary 22 cent stamp is the first artwork generated by computer ever donated to Matt's website.

Student artwork contests
Your purchases help to pay all expenses related to running these educational, commercial free websites—thank you!
A Negro Explorer (1912) My Arctic Journal (1893)

Dark Companion (1947)

The High Point of 19th Century Exploration:  Henson is a charming, earthy writer who takes you with him across the Arctic Ocean to the North Pole. Josephine Peary—the first woman arctic explorer. She was a delightful writer whose intelligence, wit and cultural sensitivity make this an enduring classic.

We publish Matt's biography because it is such a marvelous read. The only official biography; written with Henson in 1947.

The 1-oz. sterling silver proof commemorative Henson Medal. This is the 5th medal issued by The American Negro Commemorative Society. Sculptured by Dudley Moore Blakely
For students

Introduction—Henson's special
place in History.

Matt's friends
Read the amazing compliments!
Henson is special—loved by all who knew him; a special man. Henson & Peary
18-years of Arctic exploration
Matt's & Peary's life. All the dates you need!
Just say "No!" to Henson misinformation
One "expert" claims Henson was too illiterate to write his own book. Yet Henson wrote letters, worked as a clerk and was promoted. Some claim Henson grew old carrying baggage and parking cars! Nonsense! Matt was a distinguished member of the Explorers Club in New York. Its all lies! And we have the documents to prove it. Henson was promoted in his Civil Service position; retired on a pension.

Polar Express movie sparks interest in North Pole history
Lets go to the North Pole with Peary & Matt!
North by Donna Jo Napoli
"...Alvin travels from Washington, D.C. towards Baffin Island in Canada. His goal is to follow the trail of his hero, African-American Arctic explorer Matthew Henson. Alvin doesn't have Henson's knowledge of the dangers of the Arctic, but he does have bravery, brains and a lot of luck.

He is rescued from a near-death experience by an Inuk man and ends up traveling across the Canadian Arctic in a dog sledge, eventually coming to live with a man named Idlouk Tana. Idlouk teaches Alvin how to live in the Arctic, complete with bear-fat cookies! Alvin returns home the following spring with a new sense of independence and appreciation for adventure.

Get ready for a cold, thrilling journey that takes Alvin to places where the sun only shines for an hour a day in the winter and seals are essential to survival. Life in the Arctic is harsh and even deadly, and Donna Jo Napoli makes it come to life with simple imagery that perfectly portrays, in Matthew Henson's words, the "fierce beauty" of the land there. -- Carlie Webber

George Borup with Eskimo pal, 1909
The "Tenderfoot" from Yale wrote this letter to dad...
"Dear Dad, Peary has been just great. This expedition from start to finish is a picnic compared to what sufferings most Arctic expeditions go through...Nares, the leader of the English expedition of 1875-6, says the men can't face a wind in a temperature of -30 degrees, but we did that and a darn sight lower, in the wind. He also says, "Only for life or death must a man go out in the fearful cold of March." We went out all winter, and the English didn't start from the boat till April 2. Just one example of the advantage of dog power instead of man power. Beaumont, a man of indomitable energy, of the English expedition, went to his furthest on the Greenland coast at thirty marches, which "Mac" and I covered in spite of two short ones on account of smashed sledges. He and his men were dead at the end, but we were going at a canter. We did it, coming back from the northern expedition, with ridiculous ease. Just a picnic from start to finish. This is not blowing my horn, but simply to state a few facts that will speak for themselves."
This remarkable 10-page letter from Borup to his father was first published by the New York Times in 1909. We have restored it for you to enjoy as a PDF download. It offers a unique insight into the 1909 expedition from an angle not revealed by any other writer. Borup was one hell of an athlete who just had way too much fun!

Matthew Henson had a son named Anaukaq with his Inuit girlfriend Akatingwah. More...
Matt's descendents live in Greenland  

Peary & Henson

On the way to the Pole in 1908


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