Bluestocking Journal

Real history, through the eyes of a fictional person

Tag: exploration

Thursday, December 26, 1912

FAMILY IS WIPED OUT IN HORRIBLE CHRISTMAS TRAGEDY” is set in the largest type I have ever seen on a Courier-Herald front page. “A family of four was wiped out of existence at 11 o’clock Wednesday night in the most complete tragedy ever occurring in this vicinity.” The family’s carriage was struck by a train at Savoy. A little girl, a friend of the family, was the only one to survive, but she was badly injured and may die. They had just been to a wedding near Staley. It is supposed that the carriage was closed and that the driver was unable to hear or see the train. The carriage was reduced to splinters, the bodies of the dead were scattered over a wide area, and the horses returned home, unharmed.

A Chinaman was buncoed by a stranger at his laundry on South Market street. The bunco man showed him a display ad clipped from a newspaper and “informed the washee-washee man that he could have a similar ad in the paper (not mentioning which one) for $2.” The laundryman paid and got a receipt. and later “became suspicious when a diligent search of the local papers failed to reveal his advertisement.”

An explorer named Guy de Villepion planned an expedition into the hidden countries of South America, but nine days after the start in Brazil, his guide stole his boat and supplies, leaving him lost in the jungle. He wandered for three days, subsisting on wild herbs and small turtles, eaten raw. A group of savages made him their prisoner, feeding him their best food for nine days to fatten him before roasting him for their dinner. He managed to escape, and after several days he stumbled into a camp of Portugese rubber planters, who helped him to return to the coast.

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Doomed Antarctic Expedition Found

On this day in 1912, the bodies of Captain Robert Scott and his two companions were found in their sleeping bags, buried in snow. “Great God! this is an awful place,” it says in Scott’s journal, “and terrible enough for us to have laboured to it without the reward of priority.” This is because he and his team thought they would be the first to reach the South Pole, but Norwegians had beat them to it by about a month.

Tuesday, September 10, 1912

Thomas Arkle Clark, dean of the undergraduates at the University of Illinois, detected a pickpocket after his belongings at the union station in Peoria. He seized the pickpocket and held onto him even as three accomplices came to help the thief, and Mr. Clark was dragged across the tracks. The pickpocket wriggled out of his coat and ran away. The dean plans to keep the coat as a memento.

An explorer sent out by the American Museum of Natural History has discovered a lost tribe of whites on Victoria Island in the Canadian Arctic. He claims they are descendants of the followers of the Norse explorer Lief Erickson.

It is so very hot. The Arctic sounds almost pleasant. Maybe I will become temporarily deranged from the heat and do something shocking, such as swimming in a heliotrope-colored bathing suit in the wrong part of a lake.