As a way to preserve memories of British contribution to the development of the Magallanes Region in the extreme south of Chile, the British School in Punta Arenas inaugurated a British Historic Archive containing all the documents compiled by the Anglican Society of Punta Arenas.
The opening of the special chamber is in the framework of the 111th anniversary of the British School and includes mainly all the Saint James church registrar of births, baptisms, deaths and other family activities of the British community. Part of the Archives chamber will also hold documents, images and prints testimonial of explorer Ernest Shackleton time spent in Punta Arenas, hosted by the British community, during his gallant and unbending efforts to rescue his crew which remained trapped by the ice in the Antarctic insular continent. According to the report in La Prensa Austral, many of the first navigators, explorers and scientists to arrive in the extreme south of Chile were British among which the newspaper mentions Francis Drake, James Cook and Charles Darwin. This was followed by missionaries such as Allen Gardiner and reverend John Williams who in 1896 founded The English Church School, from which Punta Arenas British School was built. La Prensa Austral points out that the British Archive is only limited to community activities since the British contribution to the development of Magallanes with cattle and sheep breeding, forestry, shipping and commerce is "overwhelming". Another area that is been looked into is the so called British sector of the Punta Arenas cemetery with the purpose of recovering many of the graves and memorial stones so they can be identified by visiting relatives and tourists. All the work and collecting of information on the British presence in Punta Arenas has been done by Carlos Gonzalez Macaya, a local historian, and are available in the web site of the school, www.britishschool
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