Skip to main content

Typescript entitled 'On Land, Sea, and Ice. An Autobiography' by J. Burn Wood, including correspondence with Alexander F. Giles, 1947

 Item — Box: CLX-A-367
Identifier: Coll-1828/5

Scope and Contents

This typescript was donated with the papers of Alexander F. Giles but does not seem to be related to the rest of the documents. It came into Giles's possession when the author, who studied at the Univeristy of Edinburgh in the 1890s, sent it to him after 'the receipt of a circular sent out in support of the University of Edinburgh Graduates Association', in 1947. Giles was then the editor of the University of Edinburgh Journal. It does not appear that the typescript was published.
The typescript is 253-page long (with writing on the recto only) and contains the autobiography of J. Burn Wood, who was then serving at sea between the Cape and the West Coast of Africa. In his own words, the biography 'consists of travel, wars, an expedition to the Antarctic, life at sea as a ship's surgeon, and shipwreck'. The contents are detailed as follows:
  1. "Finished with engines"
  2. School and college days.
  3. The talismanic "M.B.C.M"
  4. I join the army.
  5. With the 19th Brigade.
  6. With the Victorian Mounted Riffles.
  7. With Boer prisoners to Bermuda.
  8. Peace comes to South Africa.
  9. My brother Bill.
  10. Settling down together.
  11. The first world war.
  12. The second battle of Ypres.
  13. The battle of Loos.
  14. War and other things.
  15. I move to the Cape.
  16. Down amongst the ice and whales.
  17. Circling the Antarctic.
  18. I become a merchant seaman.
  19. The ship from within.
  20. Mission to Russia.
  21. War comes once again.
  22. Engines start up again.


  • 1947


Conditions Governing Access

Open. Please contact the repository in advance.


1 volume

Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
George Square
Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
+44(0)131 650 8379