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Callum Thomson was brought up on the British Isles and spent his youth as a crofter, lobster fisherman, and dairy farm manager before emigrating to Canada in 1968. He was educated at the University of Calgary, Memorial University of Newfoundland, and Bryn Mawr College, obtaining degrees in archaeology and anthropology. His principal research focus during more than thirty years of fieldwork in the Canadian Arctic has been on the history and archaeological evidence for maritime adaptations of cultural groups living in extreme and marginal environments, including aboriginal people, whalers, settlers, and explorers. Since 2005, Callum has also brought his knowledge of whaling and exploration history in the polar regions and experience as a Zodiac driver on more than twenty voyages from Tierra del Fuego to the Antarctic and Subantarctic islands. Callum and his wife (and business partner)—art historian, museum specialist, and shipboard lecturer Jane Sproull Thomson—make their home on the Northumberland Strait in Nova Scotia, and travel between cruise and archaeological fieldwork seasons to expand their knowledge of others' cultures (and sponge gratefully off relatives and friends).