Pierre Esprit Radisson (1636-1710) was a French explorer and fur trader who settled in Canada in 1651. He and his brother-in-law, Médard Chouart de Groseillier, were the first European explorers to see what is now Minnesota. Radisson was instrumental in forming the Hudson’s Bay Company (an English fur trading monopoly which was founded in 1670). Radisson also trekked to Hudson Bay (in 1668 and 1670). Radisson wrote about his treks through the North American wilderness and his capture by the Iroquois (1651-1653).
John Rae (1813-1893) was a Scottish explorer, surveyor, and surgeon who explored the Canadian Arctic. Rae made three voyages, in 1848-1849, 1851, and 1853-1854, to find the Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin, who had disappeared together with his Arctic expedition. Rae surveyed and mapped over 1,400 miles (2255 km) of uncharted Canadian coastline. He also showed that King William Land was an island. On his third journey, Rae determined that Franklin and his expedition had died of starvation and exposure in the Arctic; Eskimos at Pelly Bay told Rae of Franklin’s fate. During his Arctic expeditions, the hearty Rae walked over 23,000 miles (37000 km).
Sir Walter Raleigh (1554-1618) was a British explorer, poet, historian, and soldier. Raleigh led expeditions to both North America and South America; he was trying to found new settlements, find gold, and increase trade with the New World. In 1585, Raleigh sent colonists to the east coast of North America; Raleigh later named that area Virginia, in honour of Elizabeth, the Virgin Queen. He is often credited with bringing tobacco and potatoes from the New World to Britain, but they were already known there. Raleigh was later executed by King James I for treason.
Sally Kristen Ride (May 26, 1951-2012) was the first American woman in space. Dr. Ride’s first trip into space was aboard NASA’s space shuttle Challenger (STS-7) in 1983 (June 18-June 24). Her second (and last) space flight was the eight-day Challenger (STS 41-G) mission (in October, 1984).
Sir James Clark Ross (1800 - 1862) was a British explorer and naval officer who went on missions to both the Arctic and the continent of Antarctica, doing magnetic surveys.
The Arctic: Ross went on Arctic expeditions with Sir William E. Parry from 1819 to 1827. Ross and his uncle, Sir John Ross, located the north magnetic pole on Boothia Peninsula (in northern Canada, north of King William Island) on May 31, - June 1, 1831.
Antarctica: James Ross led an Antarctic expedition (1839-43), commanding the “Erebus” while his friend Francis Crozier commanded the “Terror.” Ross charted much of the coastline and in 1841 discovered the Ross Sea, and the Victoria Barrier, which was later renamed the Ross Ice Shelf.