Born: 1869, Marlborough House, London, England
Died: 1938, The London Clinic, London, England
Maud was Norway’s queen from 1905 until her death in 1938. Although originally an English princess and fond of her fatherland, she was active in ensuring that her son, Crown Prince Olav, grew up to be a true “Norwegian” boy. Queen Maud enjoyed the outdoor life, including skiing, after her introduction to it by close family friend Fridtjof Nansen.
On June 2, 1910, a few days before Amundsen’s Fram expedition set sail, King Haakon and Queen Maud came on board the polar ship in Kristiania (Oslo). They brought gifts of a silver mug and signed photographs of themselves and Crown Prince Olav. The royal couple’s portraits were hung proudly in the salon on board Fram, and would later accompany Amundsen on both the Maud expedition and the flight of the airship Norge over the Arctic Ocean, before finally hanging with the photograph of Crown Prince Olav on the wall of the blue living room at Amundsen’s home in Svartskog.
Amundsen named several things after the queen: during the South Pole sledge journey in 1911, for example, a mountain range became Dronning Mauds Fjeldkjæder (Queen Maud Mountains), and when Amundsen wanted to name his new polar ship, he received the Queen’s permission to name it Maud.
When Amundsen returned to Norway from the Maud expedition in 1922, he brought with him a collection of Ross’s gulls for Queen Maud that can still be found in the Royal Collection today.
Queen Maud showed great concern for those bereaved as a result of Robert Falcon Scott’s South Pole expedition. She corresponded with Scott’s widow Kathleen for a number of years and filled several albums with news clippings about Scott’s expedition.