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The Washington times. [volume] (Washington [D.C.]) 1902-1939, September 10, 1922, SUNDAY MORNING, Image 58

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Tne Aurora Borealis, Sketched
from a Camp of the Last
Peary Expedition?a
Mystery Whose
tMr'A ?
A Scientific
of the
Captain Roald Amundsen on Board the "Maud,"
with One of His Little Eskimo Proteges.
W I ,
What Science Hopes to Discover in the
Mysterious Land Between Us and
the Pole, That Has Been Locked
Away for Ages by Cold and -w'r
Storm and Frozen Ocean
(C) 1*21. by American Weekly. Inc.
OCKED In by age-old ice fields
. and gignatlc frozen bergs some
where between Alaska and Sibe
ria and the North Pole Is a lost con
tinent . *
It Is the one remaining place on
earth about which the world of
today knows nothing?except that It
exists. Yet of all places on earth
there Is none upon which the mind
of science dwells with such eager
curiosity, or whose exploration may
mean so much to man's knowledge
of his own history.
For on that lost continent, there Is
good reason for belief, there are still
living.forms of life, both animal and
vegetable, which have been wiped
out for agea In all other parts of the
earth. In Its hidden valleys, pro
tected by towering mountains and
volcanic warmth, the dinosaurs, those
monster lizards of a million years *
ago, may dwell. The mastodon and
the hairy mammoth may walk with
ponderous tread the floors of its
forests; the pterodactyl, the enormous flying lizard,
whose memory still comes down to us in the legends
of dragons, may still beat the air with Its bat-Uke
And In some such hidden and protected valley the
creaturfe that bridged the gap between the ape-like
forms and man, the "missing link" itself, may still be
alive. Or, at least, relics of him may still exist in such
numbers and forms as to settle forever the question of
our evolution.
It may be, too, that onthls lost continent are the
ruins and remains of a forgotten civilization to which
old Egypt's most ancient cities are nothing but babies.
Remnants of the races that built them may #tlll be
alive among them. Almost certainly there are de
scendants of a great expedition of Norsemen who
Journeyed west some seven hundred years ago, found
the lost continent and were trapped there.
All these things may be. and science believes that
many of them are. It Is sure that, at the least, the
lost land hides profitable trades in gold and gems and
minerals of all kinds. There Is evidence that radium
bearing ores in vast quantities exist?and If this can
be found and utilized the whole problem and power
may be solved for the world.
When Captain Roakl Amundsen, the discoverer of
the South Pole, starts off this Fall with the expedition
that was delayed last month by the accident to his
aeroplane, the first step toward discovering and open
ing up the lost continent will be taken. It was indeed
?he primary cause of the expedition, but Amundsen
was drawn away from his purpose by the dramatic and
spectacular idea of racing over the Pole In his plane
instead of using It to observe the mysterious land.
Now, it is reported by those close to him, he has gone
firmly back to his first idea, and so the finding of the
lost Arctic continent again becomes a probability.
The lost land cannot be less than a half million
square miles in extent, and is perhaps more than a
million. Its existence Is proven not only by the leg
ends of natives and tales of explorers who have seen
it from a distance and were beaten back by ice and
cold and storm. Its verity has been scientifically de
termined by careful studies of the movements of polar
tides, currents and ice drifts, and fromv these the
United States Hydrographic Office has been able to
place on Its charts the land's approximate location.
The nearest approach is by way of Bering Strait,
and this is the direction which Amundsen will take.
He will drive his ship, "The Maud." into the ice floes
which circle the shores of the polar continent and
allow himself to drift, for years if necessary, until, he
is closest to those shores. Then he will arise in his
all-metal plane and soar over the mysterious land,
landing for closer observations of what he sees, like
the eagle, high up in the air.
We know fhat the whole Arctic region once had a
tropical climate, and that the animals, trees and plants
of the tropics once flourished there. The Pole, now
frozen, basked under a fervent sun. >
In Greenland, which Is to a large extent In the same
latitude as the unexplored land, vast remains of tropi
cal life have been discovered. There are fossil re
mains of palms and bread fruit trees in Greenland, and
also of tigers, camels, rnlnoceroses. mastodons, ele
phants and other antmals of the tropical zone.
In that period all the lands within the compass of
the Arctic Circle were warm of climate and clad *lth
a luxuriant verdure. Then a great change occurred,
due, perhaps, to a shifting of the earth's axis, and cold
descended on the polar regions. Vast quantities of
Ice were formed and flowed down from the poles to
ward the south. A series of glacial periods then ex
tended over the temperate regions, and to some ex- >
tent over the tropical regions of the earth.
But the occurrence df the glattpl period was no*
as severe In some regions as In otner*. Climate has
Great Britain Rlvhta Reaervtd
never followed latitude exactly. There
are valleys In Alaska which enjoy a
warm climate (faring a large part of
the year. The Island of Iceland, which
touches the Arctic Circle, has a very
pleasant, warm climate In Summer,
and Is a healthy plaqe of residence all
the year round. Europeans are flock
ing to It as a Summer resort in In
creasing numbers every year.
There Is good reason to believe
that the lost Arctic Continent may
possess extenilve valleys and areas
which enjoy a relatively moderate cli
mate. Protection by favorably situ
ated mountain ranges, preventing the flow of ice and
glaciers from the north, would conduce to this condi
tion. The existence of volcanoes, which are common
In Alaska, might also help to maintain a fertile soil and
warm clfmate In certain parts of the Arctic Continent
It Is significant that scientists have recently found
a vast extinct volcanic crater of Ngomo in South
Africa, which was inhabited by tropical animals at the
time the glacial period prevailed in the surrounding
country. The fossil bones have shown that these
animals sought a refuge here from the surrounding
cold and found it, for they continued to live here for
h*indreds of thousand years. It is suggested by geog
raphers that somewhat similar conditions may have
preserved both snimals and men within the heart of
the Arctic Continent
Peary, the discoverer.
of the North Pole, tells a
most interesting experi
ence along exactly these
lines. He onoe climbed,
he says, an enormous Ice
barrier In an unexplored
part of northern Green
When he reached the
top he looked down
through thousands of
feet Into a fertile, almost
semi-tropical valley!
There were trees, lux
uriant vegetation snd
meadows and open
spaces all spangled and
covered with flowers.
Through his glasses he
could see great herds of
animals rovtng about
and feeding. All around
Peary was a desolation
of Ice, with tero temper
ature. yet far beneath
him. In k protected, deep
and enormous valley,
there were teeming life
and warmth and every
thing necessary to exist
ence. Peary would have
liked to explore It, of
course, but the descent
was impossible. The
plans of his expedition
soon took him away, and
he never returned to the
An aeroplane could
have made the descent
and explored the myste
ries of this lost Green
land valley, whose lati
tude was no nearer to
the Pole than the lower
section of the lost contl
There is a very Inter
esting possibility that
the gigantic hairy mam
moth still survives in the
sheltered fastnesses of
the Arctic Continent We muBt bear in mind the un
questioned fact that the mammoths, down to compara
tively recent time*, roamed in vast herds ih what is
now the Arctic.portion of Siberia. The mammoth is
a huge species of elephant, an animal which now only
exists naturally in the tropics.
In Siberia mammoths have been dug out of the
earth, with all their flesh on their bones, In such good
condition that It could be eaten; with their eyes intact
and with undigested food still In their stomachs. Such
discoveries have been made at Khabarovssk and other
places In Siberia. For years many scientists argued
that mammoths must still be living somewhere in
Siberia, but this Idea is now nearly abandoned.
It seems that these mammoths were rather delicate
animals, and that a general fall In temperature, accom
panied by heavy snowfalls and the formation of vast
morasses, caused them to perish suddenly at about
Diagrammatic Map Showing
the Location of the Lost
Continent, Amundsen's Pro
posed Route, and How His
Aeroplane Will Leave the
"Maud" and Circle Over the
Mysterious Continent.
At the Right Is Shown
the Probable Course ^
of the Ancient Norse
Expedition, Which
Sought and Probably ?
Found the Lost Land
and Whose Survivors r'
May Still B? Living ; 4
"There. i
A Hairy Mammoth Trapped by Prfmitive Man. A European
Artist's Conception of One of the Struggles of Early Hu
manity Against Gigantic Beasts?a Struggle Which
Amundsen May Still Find Going On in the Polar Sea.
the same time. Presumably the same type of man
moth existed on the Arctic Continent at the same tin
as in Siberia. If thdy found refuge In the former pla<
within warm and sheltered valleys, la it not reasonab
to suppose that these monstrous creatures are flouris!
, ing there still?
If the mammoths still exist, it is also probable tlv
the other extinct animals which flourished at the san
time survive with them in their hidden retreat. Ther
fore we should expect to And the hairy mammoth a
companied by the woolly rhlneceros. the sabre-tooth<
tiger, the cave-lion, the cave-bear, the cave-byenA, tl
aurochs and many extinct monkeys in the Arctic Co:
Science has already discovered many links in tt
chain of evolution, including the Pithecanthropi
Brectus. or ape-man of Java; the Neanderthal
the Plltdown man. the Galley Hill man, the Brok<

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