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Museum of Idaho scores high-profile exhibit

The museum is one of only three American museums to host "Race to the End of the World."

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - The Museum of Idaho is showing off its latest exhibit. "Race to the End of the World" documents the first journeys to the South Pole more than 100 years ago.

According to museum officials, British explorer Robert Falcon Scott was more focused on how his journey could contribute to scientific advancement.

"He wanted to make sure that they had enough scientific evidence. It was a scientific exploration," said Museum of Idaho Director of Exhibits Rod Hansen.

Meanwhile, Norwegian Roald Amundsen was simply racing to be the first to reach the South Pole.

"Amundsen was more about getting there and getting back," said Hansen.

These approaches are evident just by taking a look at some the items on display at the museum.

"The English have beautiful china, specially made. It's got gilt edges and glazed, pristine condition, and then the Norwegians have these tin cups. Fram stamped on it," said Claire Smith, a curator at the museum.

Also on display are the binoculars Amundsen took with him when he became the first to reach the South Pole in 1911.

The Museum of Idaho is among only three American museums to host this exhibit along with New York and Washington, D.C.

"I think people recognize that Idaho Falls is an extraordinary community," said Hansen.

Hansen admits good timing also came into play.

"There was a lull between British Columbia and Lyon, France. Lyon, France, was expanding and there was a little bit of a delay, and there was a window of opportunity being so close to British Columbia," said Hansen.

The exhibit will stay in Idaho until September, when it heads to Lyon. It opens to the public Friday.

For more information, visit the museum's website.

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