Arctic
Operational
Histories

In Manhattan’s Wake

Lieutenant Commander E.B. Stolee’s Accounts of the Canadian Arctic Voyages ofCCGS John A. Macdonald and Louis St. Laurent, 1969/70

Operational Histories, No. 8

Fifty years ago, the American ice-breaking supertanker Manhattan tested the waters of Canada’s Northwest Passage. During its epic 1969 transit, Manhattan’s task was to determine the feasibility of shipping oil from newly-discovered fields of the North Slope of Alaska to North America’s Eastern Seaboard. In so doing, the massive vessel raised pivotal questions about safe navigation, sovereignty, and environmental protection, prompting new discussions about Arctic political and economic development.  Often told from the vantage point of the politicians and diplomats involved, the Manhattan’s story was also one of an integrated Canadian-American expedition dedicated to cooperative exploration and innovation. This volume publishes the reports of Lieutenant Commander Erling Stolee, the Royal Canadian Navy’s observer aboard Manhattan’s two Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker escorts – CCGS John A. Macdonald and Louis St. Laurent – which offer detailed, first-hand accounts of Canadian contributions to the test voyages.

Reports by E.B Stolee, Edited and Introduced by P. Whitney Lackenbauer and Adam Lajeunesse.

WHITNEY LACKENBAUER, Ph.D., is Canada Research Chair (Tier 1) in the Study of the Canadian North and professor in the School for the Study of Canada at Trent University, and the Honorary Lieutenant Colonel of 1st Canadian Ranger Patrol Group (1CRPG) based in Yellowknife. Whitney is an adjunct professor at the Center for Arctic Security and Resilience at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and the Mulroney Institute for Governance at St. Francis Xavier University. Previously, he has been Killam Visiting Scholar at the University of Calgary, Distinguished Visiting Professor at Canadian Forces College, and a Fulbright Scholar at Johns Hopkins University. He has (co-)written or (co-)edited more than fifty books and more than one hundred academic articles and book chapters. His recent books include The Joint Arctic Weather Stations: Science and Sovereignty in the High Arctic, 1946-1972 (2022); A History of the Canadian Rangers of Quebec: 2nd Canadian Ranger Patrol Group (2022); The Canadian Armed Forces’ Eyes, Ears, and Voice in Remote Regions: Selected Writings on the Canadian Rangers (2022); Lines in the Snow: Thoughts on the Past and Future of Northern Canadian Policy Issues (2021); On Thin Ice? Perspectives on Arctic Security (2021); Breaking Through: Understanding Sovereignty and Security in the Circumpolar Arctic (2021); and China’s Arctic Engagement: Following the Polar Silk Road to Greenland and Russia (2021). He is married with three children.

ADAM LAJEUNESSE, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor at St. Francis Xavier University, where he holds the Irving Shipbuilding Chair in Canadian Arctic and Marine Security Policy. He is a fellow with the Centre on Foreign Policy and Federalism at the University of Waterloo as well as the Canadian Global Affairs Institute. Dr. Lajeunesse is the author of the Dafoe Prize winning Lock, Stock and Icebergs: A History of Canada’s Arctic Maritime Sovereignty. He has co-authored books on China’s Arctic interests and the evolution of northern military operations, as well as numerous articles and publications on northern defence, development, shipping, governance, and maritime policy.

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