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The Ascent of Mount St. Elias, Alaska

The Ascent of Mount St. Elias, Alaska by Filippo de Filippe

The Ascent of Mount St. Elias, Alaska by Filippo de Filippe

Although Mount St. Elias had been known to native Americans for thousands of years and to Europeans since 1741 when Vitus Bering saw the peak and gave it its current name, it was not successfully climbed until 1897 by a party lead by Prince Luigi Amadeo di Savoia, Duke of the Abruzzi. This is the story of that expedition. Mount St. Elias was not climbed again for another 50 years when the advent of air support made the logistics of the climb less daunting.

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National Geographic Magazine, Vol. 8, No. 5, May 1897

National Geographic Magazine, Vol. 8, No. 5, May 1897 by National Geographic Society

National Geographic Magazine, Vol. 8, No. 5, May 1897 by National Geographic Society

The National Geographic Magazine, an illustrated monthly, the May Number.

It includes the following articles:

A Winter Voyage Through The Straights Of Magellan, by the late Admiral R. W. Meade, U.S.N.
Admiral R. W. Meade, U.S.N., by John Hyde
Costa Rica, by Señor Ricardo Villafranca
Applied Physiography In South Carolina, by L. C. Glenn
Sheik Said, by Ernest De Sasseville
Geographic Literature, Serials and Miscellanea

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The Spell of the Yukon and Other Verses

The Spell of the Yukon and Other Verses by Robert W. Service

The Spell of the Yukon and Other Verses by Robert W. Service

Known as the Bard of the Yukon and as a people’s poet, Robert Service immortalized his experience with the Yukon and its gold rush and this collection of poetry. While some poems are anecdotal and amusing, others capture the raw brilliance that frontiers evoke and the ever pioneering spirit of man. Alternately titled Songs of a Sourdough in the United Kingdoms.

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The San Francisco Calamity By Earthquake and Fire

The San Francisco Calamity By Earthquake and Fire by Charles Morris

The San Francisco Calamity By Earthquake and Fire by Charles Morris

The first half of this book describes the devastating earthquake that hit San Francisco in 1906, and the subsequent destruction caused by fire. Various eyewitnesses and victims give their account on the tragedy.

In the second half, a number of different other earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are retold, like the eruption of the Vesuvius that destroyed Pompeij or the explosion of the Krakatoa, together with scientific explanations for the causes of earthquakes and the eruption of volcanos.

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Unbeaten Tracks in Japan

Unbeaten Tracks in Japan by Isabella L. Bird

Unbeaten Tracks in Japan by Isabella L. Bird

Unbeaten Tracks in Japan is compiled of the letters she sent to her sister during her 7 months sojourn in Japan in 1878. Her travels there took her from Edo (now called Tokyo) through the interior – where she was often the first foreigner the locals had met – to Niigata, and from there to Aomori. There she crossed over to Yezo (Hokkaido), and her account on the life of the Ainu, an indigenous people of Japan, provides an interesting glimpse of days long past.

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The Uncommercial Traveller

The Uncommercial Traveller by Charles Dickens

The Uncommercial Traveller by Charles Dickens

The Uncommercial Traveller is a collection of literary sketches and reminiscences written by Charles Dickens. He seems to have chosen the title and persona of the Uncommercial Traveller as a result of a speech he gave to the Commercial Travellers’ School London in his role as honorary chairman and treasurer. The persona sits well with a writer who liked to travel, not only as a tourist, but also to research and report what he found; visiting Europe, America and giving book readings throughout Britain. He does not seem content to rest late in his career when he had attained wealth and comfort and continued travelling locally, walking the streets of London in the mould of the flâneur, a ‘gentleman stroller of city streets’. He often suffered from insomnia and his night-time wanderings gave him an insight into some of the hidden aspects of Victorian London, details of which he also incorporated into his novels. (Summary by Wikipedia)

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The Mermaid

The Mermaid by Lily Dougall

The Mermaid by Lily Dougall

‘What a fool I was not to go where she beckoned!’ mused Caius. ‘Where? Anywhere into the heart of the ocean, out of this dull, sordid life into the land of dreams.’ For it must all have been a dream—a sweet, fantastic dream, imposed upon his senses by some influence, outward or inward; but it seemed to him that at the hour when he seemed to see the maid it might have been given him to enter the world of dreams, and go on in some existence which was a truer reality than the one in which he now was. In a deliberate way he thought that perhaps, if the truth were known, he, Dr. Caius Simpson, was going a little mad; but as he sat by the softly lapping sea he did not regret this madness: what he did regret was that he must go home

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Europe Revised

Europe Revised by Irvin S. Cobb

Europe Revised by Irvin S. Cobb

Irwin Cobb’s humorous Europe Revised is a travelogue and comedy almost in the style of Mark Twain. The dedication says it best, “To My Small Daughter
Who bade me shed a tear at the tomb of Napoleon, which I was very glad to do, because when I got there my feet certainly were hurting me.”

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Afloat on the Ohio

Afloat on the Ohio by Reuben Gold Thwaites

Afloat on the Ohio by Reuben Gold Thwaites

Afloat on the Ohio, An Historical Pilgrimage, of a Thousand Miles in a Skiff, From Redstone to Cairo.

There were four of us pilgrims—my Wife, our Boy of ten and a half years, the Doctor, and I. My object in going—the others went for the outing—was to gather “local color” for work in Western history. The Ohio River was an important factor in the development of the West. I wished to know the great waterway intimately in its various phases,—to see with my own eyes what the borderers saw; in imagination, to redress the pioneer stage, and repeople it. ( From the Preface )

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Two Years in the Forbidden City

Two Years in the Forbidden City by Princess Der Ling

Two Years in the Forbidden City by Princess Der Ling

The author of the following narrative has peculiar qualifications for her task. She is a daughter of Lord Yu Keng, a member of the Manchu White Banner Corps, and one of the most advanced and progressive Chinese officials of his generation. she became First Lady-in-Waiting to the Empress Dowager, and while serving at the Court in that capacity she received the impressions which provide the subject-matter of this book. Her opportunity to observe and estimate the characteristics of the remarkable woman who ruled China for so long was unique, and her narrative throws a new light on one of the most extraordinary personalities of modern times. Yielding to the urgent solicitation of friends, she consented to put some of her experiences into literary form, and the following chronicle, in which the most famous of Chinese women, the customs and atmosphere of her Court are portrayed by an intimate of the same race, is a result.

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