Tom Crean Biography Third Edition Hardcover


The third and latest edition of Tom Crean’s biography in hardback. This account of explorer, Tom Crean’s life, gave rise to substantial revisions of his story after the sources used to transcribe the book were examined by the Royal Irish Academy. Those changes were officially applied to the Dictionary of Irish Biography in March 2021.

  •  Hardback | 292 pages
  •  159 x 237 x 17.53mm | 562.45g
  •  30 Sep 2020
  •  Keel Foley Publishing
  •  United Kingdom
  •  English

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Since 2010 Tim Foley has been the driving force of a campaign to honour a man with a remarkable story. Tom Crean, the subject of the biography ‘Crean -The Extraordinary Life of an Irish Hero, ‘ was born and raised a few miles away from the author’s father, on the breathtaking Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry, Ireland.

The story commences in late 19th century Ireland under the governance of the British Empire and continues through Crean’s career in the Royal Navy whilst serving under the leadership of Captain Robert Falcon Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton over the course of three Antarctic expeditions, Discovery, 1901-1904, Terra Nova, 1910-1913 and Endurance, 1914-1916.

After serving an unhappy apprenticeship under the strict governance of the Navy, in 1894 Tom Crean found himself travelling on his first seagoing assignment at the age of 17. His destination, the Americas where he would serve on the Pacific Station, the most extensive area under the governance of the British Empire. Immediately he was thrust into a major international incident.

It sparked another miserable period of his Naval career and resulted in demotions until an opportunity arose that would lead him to the place where he became best associated with – Antarctica.

Crean found his true calling during the heroic age of exploration on the frozen continent. Four of the chapters in the book focus on documented tales of Crean’s remarkable heroism that brought about the life-saving rescue of 25 of his colleagues over three separate occasions.

We are then taken through to Crean’s retirement and his return to a changed country in the aftermath of rebellion and in the midst of a War of Independence that came at a great personal loss to Tom Crean.

The book goes on to question why and how Crean’s story was largely forgotten during his lifetime and after his death, reveals the surprising source of the first ever documented account of Crean’s Polar feats that was written in 1952.

Tom Crean’s tale is one of suffering. successes and sadness but above all, it’s a story of an unassuming man who displayed unparalleled bravery to save the lives of others whilst subject to the harshest conditions on the planet.


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