A Researcher For All Seasons: Focus on Dr. Pete Capelotti

Research, Creative & Scholarly Activities


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Dr. P.J. Capelotti’s research on the archaeology and history of exploration has taken him from the equator to the North Pole, and from Indonesia to Russia. He did his doctoral fieldwork in archaeology 600 miles from the North Pole on the island of Danskøya in Northwest Svalbard, Norway.

His primary research centers on the history and archaeology of polar exploration and he is currently completing the first biography of the British polar explorer Benjamin Leigh Smith and beginning work on the first complete history of the American exploration of the Arctic archipelago of Franz Josef Land.  In the course of his polar research, he has been to the North Pole twice, visited several islands in the Franz Josef Land archipelago, and made six trips to Svalbard.

In 2009, he designed, wrote and opened at the Spitsbergen Airship Museum in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, a centennial exhibit on the polar flights of the…

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