When Teens Just…Snuck onto Antarctic Expeditions
In 1928, 17-year-old Billy Gawronski decided it wasn’t enough to dream about going to Antarctica, so he set out to secretly join an outgoing ship. In an excerpt from Laurie Gwen Shapiro’s forthcoming book about Gawronski’s adventures, The Stowaway, we find Billy at a crucial moment in his plan.
Read the full excerpt at Outside Magazine
My beloved editor Megan Hogan at SimonBooks just sent me a photo of a new “The Stowaway” display in the lobby of Simon & Schuster at Rockefeller Center – 1230 Avenue of the Americas. I’m going up there later this morning to take a photo with her! SO amazed- had zero idea this was going up! — feeling thankful.
How I Found the Boy Who Stowed Away to Antarctica
Finding just the right story for a book was my New Year’s resolution in 2013. I just didn’t know where to look. But I’ve always loved writing about my neighborhood — Manhattan’s historic Lower East Side, where I grew up and still live — and so I was happy to be assigned a small magazine piece on Polish classes at St. Stanislaus, a local Roman Catholic church.
Read the full essay on Powells.com
How a Jersey teen stowaway became an international celebrity
A few minutes past 4 a.m. on Aug. 25, 1928, 17-year-old Billy Gawronski dove into the Hudson River and swam out to board a ship called the City of New York, which was sailing to Antarctica the next day.
Gawronski had no experience at sea or as an adventurer. But he had a desire to live a more exciting life than the one he was born into.
Read the full article by Larry Getlen on New York Post
The Plucky Teenage Stowaway Aboard the First American Expedition to Antarctica
As night dropped on September 15, Billy jumped out of his second-floor window and onto the garden, a fall softened by potatoes and cabbage plants and proudly photographed sunflowers. You would think that the boy had learned from his previous stowaway attempt to bring more food or a change of dry clothes. Not the case.
Read the excerpt from chapter four on Mental Floss
Determined to Hitch a Ride on the Greatest Rig in America
With his back against the sunset, a seventeen-year-old boy lingered on the docks along the Hudson River. By his calculations, it was a ten-minute swim from where he stood to the ship.
The new high school graduate waited, his soft grey eyes fixed on the City of New York, moored and heavily guarded on the Hoboken piers. The sun went down at six forty-five this day—August 24, 1928—but still he fought back his adrenaline. He wanted true darkness before carrying out his plan. At noon the next day, the ship would leave New York Harbor and sail nine thousand miles to the frozen continent of Antarctica, the last frontier on Earth left to explore. He intended to be aboard.
Read the full excerpt on Longreads.com
Failed Queens teen ‘Stowaway’ uses his moxie to join Admiral Richard Byrd’s historic Antarctic voyage
When Admiral Richard Byrd’s ships set sail from New York to Antarctica in 1928, one carried some unexpected cargo: William Gawronski.
The life of the then-17-year-old is recounted in “The Stowaway: A Young Man’s Extraordinary Adventure to Antarctica” by Laurie Gwen Shapiro.
Read the full piece on NY Daily News
A Teenage Stowaway’s Tale Comes to Life
New Simon & Schuster book recounts story of Billy Gawronski, who sneaked aboard a famed explorer’s ship to travel to Antarctica
Read full piece on wsj.com
The Stowaway Craze
In the roaring twenties, sneaking on board a ship became a way to go viral.
Read the full piece on newyorker.com
Image courtesy Gizela Gawronski / The Pilsudski Institute of America