We left a part of our outfit with Mr. Evans at Ta-li Fu and with a new caravan of twenty-five animals traveled northward for six days to Li-chiang Fu. By taking a small road we hoped to find good collecting in the pine forests three days from Ta-li, but instead there was a total absence of animal life. The woods were beautiful, parklike stretches which in a country like California would be full of game, but here were silent and deserted. During the fourth and fifth days we were still in the forests, but on the sixth we crossed a pass 10,000 feet high and descended abruptly into a long marshy plain where at the far end were the gray outlines of Li-chiang dimly visible against the mountains.

Wu and I galloped ahead to find a temple for our camp, leaving Heller and my wife to follow. A few pages from her journal tell of their entry into the city.

    We rode along a winding stone causeway and halted on the outskirts of
    the town to wait until the caravan arrived. Neither Roy nor Wu was in
    sight but we expected that the mafus would ask where they had gone
    and follow, for of course we could not speak a word of the language.
    Already there was quite a sensation as we came down the street, for our
    sudden appearance seemed to have stupefied the people with amazement.
    One old lady looked at me with an indescribable expression and uttered
    what sounded exactly like a long-drawn "Mon Dieu" of disagreeable

    I tried smiling at them but they appeared too astonished to appreciate
    our friendliness and in return merely stared with open mouths and eyes.
    We halted and immediately the street was blocked by crowds of men,
    women, and children who poured out of the houses, shops, and
    cross-streets to gaze in rapt attention. When the caravan arrived we
    moved on again expecting that the mafus had learned where Roy had
    gone, but they seemed to be wandering aimlessly through the narrow
    winding streets. Even though we did not find a camping place we
    afforded the natives intense delight.

    I felt as though I were the chief actor in a circus parade at home, but
    the most remarkable attraction there could not have equaled our
    unparalleled success in Li-chiang. On the second excursion through the
    town we passed down a cross-street, and suddenly from a courtyard at
    the right we heard feminine voices speaking English.

    "It's a girl. No, it's a boy. No, no, can't you see her hair, it's a
    girl!" Just then we caught sight of three ladies, unmistakably
    foreigners although dressed in Chinese costume. They were Mrs. A. Kok,
    wife of the resident Pentecostal Missionary, and two assistants, who
    rushed into the street as soon as they had determined my sex and
    literally "fell upon my neck." They had not seen a white woman since
    their arrival there four years ago and it seemed to them that I had
    suddenly dropped from the sky.

    While we were talking Wu appeared to guide us to the camp. They had
    chosen a beautiful temple with a flower-filled courtyard on the summit
    of a hill overlooking the city. It was wonderfully clean and when our
    beds, tables, and chairs were spread on the broad stone porch it seemed
    like a real home.

    The next days were busy ones for us all, Roy and Heller setting traps,
    and I working at my photography. We let it be known that we would pay
    well for specimens, and there was an almost uninterrupted procession of
    men and boys carrying long sticks, on which were strung frogs, rats,
    toads, and snakes. They would simply beam with triumph and enthusiasm.
    Our fame spread and more came, bringing the most ridiculous tame
    things - pigeons, maltese cats, dogs, white rabbits, caged birds, and I
    even believe we might have purchased a girl baby or two, for mothers
    stood about with little brown kiddies on their backs as though they
    really would like to offer them to us but hardly dared.

    The temple priest was a good looking, smooth-faced chap, and hidden
    under his coat he brought dozens of skins. I believe that his religious
    vows did not allow him to handle animals - openly - and so he would
    beckon Roy into the darkness of the temple with a most mysterious air,
    and would extract all sorts of things from his sleeves just like a
    sleight-of-hand performer. He was a rich man when we left!

    The people are mostly tribesmen - Mosos, Lolos, Tibetans, and many
    others. The girls wear their hair "bobbed off" in front and with a long
    plait in back. They wash their hair once - on their wedding day - and
    then it is wrapped up in turbans for the rest of their lives. The
    Tibetan women dress their hair in dozens of tiny braids, but I don't
    believe there is any authority that they ever wash it, or themselves

Li-chiang was our first collecting camp and we never had a better one. On the morning after our arrival Heller found mammals in half his traps, and in the afternoon we each put out a line of forty traps which brought us fifty mammals of eleven species. This was a wonderful relief after the many days of travel through country devoid of animal life.

Our traps contained shrews of two species, meadow voles, Asiatic white-footed mice, spiny mice, rats, squirrels, and tree shrews. The small mammals were exceedingly abundant and easy to catch, but after the first day we began to have difficulty with the natives who stole our traps. We usually marked them with a bit of cotton, and the boys would follow an entire line down a hedge, taking every one. Sometimes they even brought specimens to us for sale which we knew had been caught in our stolen traps!

The traps were set under logs and stumps and in the grass where we found the "runways" or paths which mice, rats and voles often make. These animals begin to move about just after dark, and we usually would inspect our traps with a lantern about nine o'clock in the evening. This not only gave the trap a double chance to be filled but we also secured perfect specimens, for such species as mice and shrews are cannibalistic, and almost every night, if the specimens were not taken out early in the evening, several would be partly eaten.

Small mammals are often of much greater interest and importance scientifically than large ones, for, especially among the Insectivores, there are many primitive forms which are apparently of ancestral stock and throw light on the evolutionary history of other living groups.

Li-chiang is a fur market of considerable importance for the Tibetans bring down vast quantities of skins for sale and trade. Lambs, goats, foxes, cats, civets, pandas, and flying squirrels hang in the shops and there are dozens of fur dressers who do really excellent tanning.

This city is a most interesting place especially on market day, for its inhabitants represent many different tribes with but comparatively few Chinese. By far the greatest percentage of natives are the Mosos who are semi-Tibetan in their life and customs. They were originally an independent race who ruled a considerable part of northern Yuen-nan, and Li-chiang was their ancient capital. To the effeminate and "highly civilized" Chinese they are "barbarians," but we found them to be simple, honest and wholly delightful people. Many of those whom we met later had never seen a white woman, and yet their inherent decency was in the greatest contrast to that of the Chinese who consider themselves so immeasurably their superior.

The Mosos have large herds of sheep and cattle, and this is the one place in the Orient except in large cities along the coast, where we could obtain fresh milk and butter. As with the Tibetans, buttered tea and tsamba (parched oatmeal) are the great essentials, but they also grow quantities of delicious vegetables and fruit. Buttered tea is prepared by churning fresh butter into hot tea until the two have become well mixed. It is then thickened with finely ground tsamba until a ball is formed which is eaten with the fingers. The combination is distinctly good when the ingredients are fresh, but if the butter happens to be rancid the less said of it the better.

The natives of this region are largely agriculturists and raise great quantities of squash, turnips, carrots, cabbage, potatoes, onions, corn, peas, beans, oranges, pears, persimmons and nuts. While traveling we filled our saddle pockets with pears and English walnuts or chestnuts and could replenish our stock at almost any village along the road.

Everything was absurdly cheap. Eggs were usually about eight cents (Mexican) a dozen, and we could always purchase a chicken for an empty tin can, or two for a bottle. In fact, the latter was the greatest desideratum and when offers of money failed to induce a native to pose for the camera a bottle nearly always would decide matters in our favor.

In Li-chiang we learned that there was good shooting only twelve miles north of the city on the Snow Mountain range, the highest peak of which rises 18,000 feet above the sea. We left a part of our outfit at Mr. Kok's house and engaged a caravan of seventeen mules to take us to the hunting grounds. Mr. Kok assisted us in numberless ways while we were in the vicinity of Li-chiang and in other parts of the country. He took charge of all our mail, sending it to us by runners, loaned us money when it was difficult to get cash from Ta-li Fu and helped us to engage servants and caravans.

It had rained almost continually for five days and a dense gray curtain of fog hung far down in the valley, but on the morning of October 11 we awoke to find ourselves in another world. We were in a vast amphitheater of encircling mountains, white almost to their bases, rising ridge on ridge, like the foamy billows of a mighty ocean. At the north, silhouetted against the vivid blue of a cloudless sky, towered the great Snow Mountain, its jagged peaks crowned with gold where the morning sun had kissed their summits. We rode toward it across a level rock-strewn plain and watched the fleecy clouds form, and float upward to weave in and out or lose themselves in the vast snow craters beside the glacier. It was an inspiration, that beautiful mountain, lying so white and still in its cradle of dark green trees. Each hour it seemed more wonderful, more dominating in its grandeur, and we were glad to be of the chosen few to look upon its sacred beauty.

In the early afternoon we camped in a tiny temple which nestled into a grove of spruce trees on the outskirts of a straggling village. To the north the Snow Mountain rose almost above us, and on the east and south a grassy rock-strewn plain rolled away in gentle undulations to a range of hills which jutted into the valley like a great recumbent dragon.

A short time after our camp was established we had a visit from an Austrian botanist, Baron Haendel-Mazzetti, who had been in the village for two weeks. He had come to Yuen-nan for the Vienna Museum before the war, expecting to remain a year, but already had been there three. Surrounded as he was by Tibet, Burma, and Tonking, his only possible exit was by way of the four-month overland journey to Shanghai. He had little money and for two years had been living on Chinese food. He dined with us in the evening, and his enjoyment of our coffee, bread, kippered herring, and other canned goods was almost pathetic.

A week after our arrival Baron Haendel-Mazzetti left for Yuen-nan Fu and eventually reached Shanghai which, however, became a closed port to him upon China's entry into the European war. It is to be hoped that his collections, which must be of great scientific value and importance, have arrived at a place of safety long ere this book issues from the press.