Tabloid medical chest with medicine supplies, 1910.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
This was made by Burroughs Wellcome and Co for the 1910 British Antarctic Expedition, led by Captain Robert Falcon Scott (1868-1912). Burroughs Wellcome patented their proces of manufacturing compresed tablets of medication in 1884, calling the preparations 'Tabloids'. The company specialised in lightweight medical chests for use on expeditions. Scott left London on 1st June 1910 bound for the South Pole. He reached the Pole on 17th January 1912, only to find that the Norwegian expedition under Roald Amundsen had beaten them by a month. Delayed by blizzards, and running out of supplies, Scott and his team died at the end of March. Their bodies and diaries were found by a search party eight months later.