With the subsiding of the waters came my long-desired opportunity to travel the course of the unmapped Itecoahy. In the month of June a local trader issued a notice that he was to send a launch up the river for trading purposes and to take the workers who had been sojourning in Remate de Males back to their places of employment, to commence the annual extraction of rubber. The launch was scheduled to sail on a Monday and would ascend the Itecoahy to its headwaters, or nearly so, thus passing the mouths of the Ituhy, the Branco, and Las Pedras rivers, affluents of considerable size which are nevertheless unrecorded on maps. The total length of the Branco River is over three hundred miles, and it has on its shores several large and productive seringales.

When on my way up the Amazon to the Brazilian frontier, I had stopped at Manaos, the capital of the State of Amazonas. There I had occasion to consult an Englishman about the Javary region. In answer to one of my inquiries, I received the following letter, which speaks for itself:

Referring to our conversation of recent date, I should wish once more to impress upon your mind the perilous nature of your journey, and I am not basing this information upon hearsay, but upon personal experience, having traversed the region in question quite recently.

Owing to certain absolutely untrue articles written by one H - - , claiming to be your countryman, I am convinced that you can not rely upon the protection of the employees of this company, as having been so badly libelled by one, they are apt to forget that such articles were not at your instigation, and as is often the case the innocent may suffer for the guilty.

On the other hand, without this protection you will find yourself absolutely at the mercy of savage and cannibal Indians.

I have this day spoken to the consul here at Manaos and explained to him that, although I have no wish to deter you from your voyage, you must be considered as the only one responsible in any way for any ill that may befall you.

Finally, I hope that before disregarding this advice (which I offer you in a perfectly friendly spirit) you will carefully consider the consequences which such a voyage might produce, and, frankly speaking, I consider that your chance of bringing it to a successful termination is Nil.

Believe me to be, etc.,


During the time of my journey up the river and of my stay in Remate de Males, I had seen nothing of the particular dangers mentioned in this letter. The only Indians I had seen were such as smoked long black cigars and wore pink or blue pajamas. The letter further developed an interest, started by the hints of life in the interior, which had come to me in the civilisation of Remate de Males. I was, of course, particularly desirous of finding out all I could about the wild people of the inland regions, since I could not recall that much had been written about them.

Henry W. Bates, the famous explorer who ascended the Amazon as far as Teffe, came within 120 miles of the mouth of the Javary River in the year 1858, and makes the following statement about the indigenous tribes of this region:

The only other tribe of this neighbourhood concerning which I obtained any information was the Mangeromas, whose territory embraces several hundred miles of the western banks of the river Javary, an affluent of the Solimoes, a hundred and twenty miles beyond Sao Paolo da Olivenca. These are fierce and indomitable and hostile people, like the Araras of the Madeira River. They are also cannibals. The navigation of the Javary River is rendered impossible on account of the Mangeromas lying in wait on its banks to intercept and murder all travellers.

Now to return to the letter; I thought that perhaps my English friend had overdrawn things a little in a laudable endeavour to make me more cautious. In other words, it was for me the old story over again, of learning at the cost of experience - the story of disregarded advice, and so I went on in my confidence.

When the announcement of the launch's sailing came, I went immediately for an interview with the owner, a Brazilian named Pedro Smith, whose kindness I shall never forget. He offered me the chance of making the entire trip on his boat, but would accept no remuneration, saying that I would find conditions on the little overcrowded vessel very uncomfortable, and that the trip would not be free from actual bodily risk. When even he tried to dissuade me, I began to think more seriously of the Englishman's letter, but I told him that I had fully made up my mind to penetrate the mystery of those little known regions. I use the term "little known" in the sense that while they are well enough known to the handful of Indians and rubber-workers yet they are "terra incognita" to the outside world. The white man has not as yet traversed this Itecoahy and its affluents, although it would be a system of no little importance if located in some other country - for instance, in the United States.

My object was to study the rubber-worker at his labour, to find out the true length of the Itecoahy River, and to photograph everything worth while. I had with me all the materials and instruments necessary - at least so I thought.

The photographic outfit consisted of a Graflex camera with a shutter of high speed, which would come handy when taking animals in motion, and a large-view camera with ten dozen photographic plates and a corresponding amount of prepared paper. In view of the difficulties of travel, I had decided to develop my plates as I went along and make prints in the field, rather than run the risk of ruining them by some unlucky accident. Perhaps at the very end of the trip a quantity of undeveloped plates might be lost, and such a calamity would mean the failure of the whole journey in one of its most important particulars. Such a disastrous result was foreshadowed when a porter, loaded with my effects, clambering down the sixty-foot incline extreme low water made at Remate de Males, lost his balance in the last few feet of the descent and dropped into the water, completely ruining a whole pack of photographic supplies whose arrival from New York I had been awaiting for months. Luckily this was at the beginning of this trip and I could replace them from my general stock.

A hypodermic outfit, quinine, and a few bistouries completed my primitive medical department. Later on these proved of the greatest value. I would never think of omitting such supplies even in a case where a few pounds of extra weight are not rashly to be considered. It turned out that in the regions I penetrated, medical assistance was a thing unheard of within a radius of several hundred miles.

A Luger automatic pistol of a calibre of nine millimetres, and several hundred cartridges, were my armament, and for weeks this pistol became my only means of providing a scant food supply.

Thus equipped I was on hand early in the morning of the day of starting, anxious to see what sort of shipmates I was to have. They proved all to be seringueiros, bound for the upper river. Our craft was a forty-foot launch called the Carolina. There was a large crowd of the passengers assembled when I arrived, and they kept coming. To my amazement, it developed that one hundred and twenty souls were expected to find room on board, together with several tons of merchandise. The mystery of how the load was to be accommodated was somewhat solved, when I saw them attach a lighter to each side of the launch, and again, when some of the helpers brought up a fleet of dugouts which they proceeded to make fast by a stern hawser. But the mystery was again increased, when I was told that none of the passengers intended to occupy permanent quarters on the auxiliary fleet. As I was already taken care of, I resolved that if the problem was to worry anybody, it would be the seringueiros, though I realised that I would be travelling by "slow steamer" when the little old-fashioned Carolina should at length begin the task of fighting the five-mile current with this tagging fleet to challenge its claim to a twelve-horse-power engine.

The seringueiros and their families occupied every foot of space that was not reserved for merchandise. Hammocks were strung over and under each other in every direction, secured to the posts which supported the roof. Between them the rubber-coated knapsacks were suspended. On the roof was an indiscriminate mass of chicken-coops with feathered occupants; and humanity.

About midships on each lighter was a store-room, one of which was occupied by the clerk who accompanied the launch. In this they generously offered me the opportunity of making my headquarters during the trip. The room was about six feet by eight and contained a multitude of luxuries and necessities for the rubber-workers. There were .44 Winchester rifles in large numbers, the usual, indispensable Collins machete, and tobacco in six-feet-long, spindle-shaped rolls. There was also the "***" Hennessy cognac, selling at 40,000 reis ($14.00 gold) a bottle; and every variety of canned edible from California pears to Horlick's malted milk, from Armour's corned beef to Heinz's sweet pickles.

Every one was anxious to get started; I, who had more to look forward to than months of monotonous labour in the forests, not the least. At last the owner of the boat arrived, it being then two o'clock in the afternoon. He came aboard to shake hands with everyone and after a long period of talking pulled the cord leading to the steam-whistle, giving the official signal for departure. It then developed that one of the firemen was missing. Without him we could not start on our journey. The whistling was continued for fully forty minutes without any answer. Finally, the longed-for gentleman was seen emerging unsteadily from the local gin-shop with no sign of haste. He managed to crawl on board and we were off, amid much noise and firing of guns.

After a two-hours' run we stopped at a place consisting of two houses and a banana patch. Evidently the owner of this property made a side-business of supplying palm-wood as fuel for the launch. A load was carried on board and stowed beside the boiler, and we went once more on our way. I cannot say that the immediate surroundings were comfortable. There were people everywhere. They were lounging in the hammocks, or lying on the deck itself; and some were even sprawling uncomfortably on their trunks or knapsacks. A cat would have had difficulty in squeezing itself through this compact mass of men, chattering women, and crying children. But I had no sooner begun to reflect adversely on the situation, than the old charm of the Amazon asserted itself again and made me oblivious to anything so trivial as personal comfort surroundings. I became lost to myself in the enjoyment of the river.

That old fig-tree on the bank is worth looking at. The mass of its branches, once so high-reaching and ornamental, now lie on the ground in a confused huddle, shattered and covered with parasites and orchids, while millions of ants are in full activity destroying the last clusters of foliage. It is only a question of weeks, perhaps days, before some blast of wind will throw this humbled forest-monarch over the steep bank of the river. When the water rises again, the trunk with a few skeleton branches will be carried away with the current to begin a slow but relentless drift to old Father Amazon. Here and there will be a little pause, while the river gods decide, and then it will move on, to be caught somewhere along the course and contribute to the formation of some new island or complete its last long journey to the Atlantic Ocean.

As the launch rounds bend after bend in the river, the same magnificent forest scenery is repeated over and over again. Sometimes a tall matamata tree stands in a little accidental clearing, entirely covered with a luxuriant growth of vegetation. But these are borrowed plumes. Bushropes, climbers, and vines have clothed it from root to topmost branch, but they are only examples of the legion of beautiful parasites that seem to abound in the tropics. They will sap the vitality of this masterpiece of Nature, until in its turn it will fall before some stormy night's blow. All along the shore there is a myriad life among the trees and beautifully coloured birds flash in and out of the branches. You can hear a nervous chattering and discern little brown bodies swinging from branch to branch, or hanging suspended for fractions of a second from the network of climbers and aerial roots. They are monkeys. They follow the launch along the trees on the banks for a while and then disappear.

The sun is glaring down on the little craft and its human freight. The temperature is 112 degrees (F.) in the shade and the only place for possible relief is on a box of cognac alongside the commandant's hammock. He has fastened this directly behind the wheel so that he can watch the steersman, an Indian with filed teeth and a machete stuck in his belt.

Would anyone think that these trees, lining the shore for miles and miles and looking so beautiful and harmless by day, have a miasmatic breath or exhalation at night that produces a severe fever in one who is subjected for any length of time to their influence. It would be impossible for even the most fantastical scenic artist to exaggerate the picturesque combinations of colour and form ever changing like a kaleidoscope to exhibit new delights. A tall and slender palm can be seen in its simple beauty alongside the white trunk of the embauba tree, with umbrella-shaped crown, covered and gracefully draped with vines and hanging plants, whose roots drop down until they reach the water, or join and twist themselves until they form a leaf-portiere. And for thousands of square miles this ever changing display of floral splendour is repeated and repeated. And it would be a treat for an ornithologist to pass up the river. A hundred times a day flocks of small paroquets fly screaming over our heads and settle behind the trees. Large, green, blue, and scarlet parrots, the araras, fly in pairs, uttering penetrating, harsh cries, and sometimes an egret with her precious snow-white plumage would keep just ahead of us with graceful wing-motion, until she chose a spot to alight among the low bushes close to the water-front.

The dark blue toucan, with its enormous scarlet and yellow beak, would suddenly appear and fly up with peculiar jerky swoops, at the same time uttering its yelping cry. Several times I saw light green lizards of from three to four feet in length stretched out on branches of dead trees and staring at us as we passed.

Night came and drew its sombre curtain over the splendours. I was now shown a place of unpretentious dimensions where I could suspend my hammock, but, unluckily, things were so crowded that there was no room for a mosquito-net around me. Under ordinary circumstances, neglect of this would have been an inexcusable lack of prudence, but I lay down trusting that the draft created by the passage of the boat would keep the insect pests away, as they told me it would. I found that experience had taught them rightly.

To the post where I tied the foot-end of my hammock there were fastened six other hammocks. Consequently seven pairs of feet were bound to come into pretty close contact with each other. While I was lucky enough to have the hammock closest to the rail, I was unlucky enough to have as my next neighbour a woman; she was part Brazilian negro and part Indian. She had her teeth filed sharp like shark's teeth, wore brass rings in her ears, large enough to suspend portieres from, and smoked a pipe continually. I found later that it was a habit to take the pipe to bed with her, so that she could begin smoking the first thing in the morning. She used a very expensive Parisian perfume, whether to mitigate the effects of the pipe or not, I do not know.

Under the conditions I have described I lay down in my hammock, but found that sleep was impossible. There was nothing to do but resign myself to Fate and find amusement, with all the philosophy possible, by staring at the sky. I counted the stars over and over again and tried to identify old friends among the constellations. Among them the Southern Cross was a stranger to me, but the Great Dipper, one end of which was almost hidden behind the trees, I recognised with all the freedom of years of acquaintance. My mind went back to the last time I had seen it; across the house-tops of old Manhattan it was, and under what widely different conditions!

At last a merciful Providence closed my eyes and I was soon transported by the arms of Morpheus to the little lake in Central Park that I had liked so well. I dreamed of gliding slowly over the waters of that placid lake, and awoke to find myself being energetically kicked in the shins by my female neighbour. There was nothing to do but indulge in a few appropriate thoughts on this community-sleeping-apartment life, and then I got up to wander forward, as best I could in the dark, across the sleeping forms and take refuge on top of my case of cognac.

We seemed to be down in a pool of vast darkness, of whose walls no one could guess the limits. I listened to the gurgling of water at the bow and wondered how it was possible for the man at the wheel to guide our course without colliding with the many tree trunks that were scattered everywhere about us. The river wound back and forth, hardly ever running straight for more than half a mile, and the pilot continually had to steer the boat almost to the opposite bank to keep the trailing canoes from stranding on the sand-bars at the turns. Now and then a lightning flash would illuminate the wild banks, proving that we were not on the bosom of some Cimmerian lake, but following a continuous stream that stretched far ahead, and I could get a glimpse of the dark, doubly-mysterious forests on either hand; and now and then a huge tree-trunk would slip swiftly and silently past us.

The only interruption of the perfect quiet that prevailed was the occasional outburst of roars from the throat of the howling monkey, which I had come to know as making the night hideous in Remate de Males. But the present environment added just the proper atmosphere to make one think for a second that he was participating in some phantasm of Dante's.

There was no particular incident to record on the trip, till June the 16th, in the night-time, when we arrived at Porto Alegre, the glad harbour, which consisted of one hut. This hut belonged to the proprietor of aseringale. I followed the captain and the clerk ashore and, with them, was warmly received by the owner, when we had clambered up the ladder in front of the hut. He had not heard from civilisation for seven months, and was very glad to see people from the outside world, especially as they were bringing a consignment of merchandise that would enable him to commence the annual tapping of the rubber trees.

About a dozen seringueiros and their families disembarked here and went without ceremony to their quarters, where they had a fire going in less than no time.

It is the custom in this section of Brazil to make visitors welcome in a rather complicated manner. You first place your arm around the other man's waist, resting the palm of your hand on his back. Then with the other hand you pat him on the shoulder, or as near that point as you can reach. Whether it recalled my wrestling practice or not, I do not know, but the first time I ever tried this, I nearly succeeded in throwing down the man I was seeking to honour.

After the proprietor had greeted each of us in this cordial way, we sat down. A large negress made her appearance, smoking a pipe and carrying a tray full of tiny cups, filled with the usual unsweetened jet-black coffee. After a brief stay, during which business was discussed and an account given of the manner of death of all the friends who had departed this life during the season in Remate de Males, we took our leave and were off again, in the middle of the night, amid a general discharging of rifles and much blowing of the steam-whistle.

The night was intensely dark, what moon there was being hidden behind clouds most of the time, and an occasional flash of lightning would show us that we were running very close to the shores. I decided to go on the roof of the right-hand lighter, where I thought I would get better air and feel more comfortable than in the close quarters below. On the roof I found some old rags and a rubber coated knapsack. Taking these to the stern, I lay down upon them and went to sleep. I imagine that I must have been asleep about two hours, when I was aroused by a crashing sound that came from the forepart of the boat. Luckily, I had fallen asleep with my eyeglasses on, otherwise, as I am near-sighted, I should not have been able to grasp the situation as quickly as proved necessary.

We were so close to the shore that the branches of a low-hanging tree swept across the top of the lighter, and it was this branch that caused the turmoil as the craft passed through it, causing everything to be torn from the roof; trunks, bags, and chicken-coops, in a disordered mass. I had received no warning and hardly had collected my senses before this avalanche was upon me. Seizing the branches as they came, I held on for dear life. I tried to scramble over them to the other part of the roof, but having fallen asleep on the stern there was no chance.

I felt myself being lifted off the boat, and as I blindly held on I had time to wonder whether the tree would keep me out of the water, or lower me into the waiting jaws of some late alligator. But it did better than that for me. The branches sagged under my weight, and I soon saw that they were going to lower me upon the trailing canoes. I did not wait to choose any particular canoe, but, as the first one came beneath me, I dropped off, landing directly on top of a sleeping rubber-worker and giving him probably as bad a scare as I had had. For the remainder of the night I considered the case of cognac, previously referred to, a marvellously comfortable and safe place to stay.

During the next day we made two stops, and at the second took on board eighteen more passengers. It seemed to me that they would have to sleep in a vertical position, since, as far as I could discover, the places where it could be done horizontally were all occupied. At five in the afternoon of this day, we arrived at a small rubber estate called Boa Vista, where the owner kept cut palm-wood to be used for the launch, besides bananas, pineapples and a small patch of cocoa-plants. The firemen of our launch were busily engaged in carrying the wood, when one of them suddenly threw off his load and came running down the bank. The others scattered like frightened sheep, and only with difficulty could be brought to explain that they had seen a snake of a poisonous variety. We crept slowly up to the place under the wood-pile which they had pointed out, and there about a foot of the tail of a beautifully decorated snake was projecting. I jammed my twenty-four-inch machete through it longitudinally, at the same time jumping back, since it was impossible to judge accurately where the head might come from. It emerged suddenly about where we expected, the thin tongue working in and out with lightning speed and the reptile evidently in a state of great rage, for which I could hardly blame it, as its tail was pinned down and perforated with a machete. We dispatched it with a blow on the head and on measuring it found the length to be nearly nine feet. The interrupted loading of wood continued without much additional excitement and we were soon on our way again.

That night I passed very badly. My female neighbour insisted on using the edge of my hammock for a foot-rest, and, to add to my general discomfort, my hammock persisted in assuming a convex shape rather than a more conventional and convenient concave, which put me in constant danger of being thrown headlong into the river, only a few inches away. Finally, I took my hammock down from its fastenings and went aft where I found a vacant canoe among those still trailing behind. I threw my hammock in the bottom and with this for a bed managed to fall asleep, now and then receiving a blow from some unusually low branch which threatened to upset my floating couch.

The next morning it was found that we had lost two canoes, evidently torn loose during the night without anybody noticing the accident. Luckily, I had not chosen either of these to sleep in, nor had anyone else. I cannot help thinking what my feelings would have been if I had found myself adrift far behind the launch.

For several days more we continued going up the seemingly endless river. Human habitations were far apart, the last ones we had seen as much as eighty-five miles below. We expected soon to be in the territory owned by Coronel da Silva, the richest rubber proprietor in the Javary region. I found the level of this land we were passing through to be slightly higher than any I had traversed as yet, although even here we were passing through an entirely submerged stretch of forest. There were high inland spaces that had already begun to dry up, as we could see, and this was the main indication of higher altitude than had been found lower down the river. Another indication was that big game was more in evidence. The animals find here a good feeding place without the necessity of migrating to distant locations when the water begins to come through the forest.

At a place, with the name of Nova Aurora, again consisting of one hut, we found a quantity of skins stretched in the sunlight to dry. They were mostly the hides of yellow jaguars, or pumas, as we call them in the United States, and seven feet from the nose to the end of the tail was not an unusual length. Although, as we learned, they had been taken from the animals only a few weeks previously, they had already been partly destroyed by the gnawing of rats. A tapir, weighing nearly seven hundred and fifty pounds, had been shot the day before and was being cut up for food when we arrived. We were invited to stay and take dinner here, and I had my first opportunity of tasting roast tapir. I found that it resembled roast beef very much, only sweeter, and the enjoyment of this food belongs among the very few pleasant memories I preserve of this trip.

While they were getting dinner ready, I noticed what I took to be a stuffed parrot on a beam in the kitchen. But when I touched its tail I found that it was enough alive to come near snapping my finger off. It was a very large arara parrot with two tail feathers, each about thirty-six inches long, a magnificent specimen worthy of a place in a museum. Parrots of this particular species are very difficult to handle, being as stupid and malicious as they are beautiful. They often made me think of dandies who go resplendent in fine clothes but are less conspicuous for mental excellences.

After having indulged in black coffee, we were invited to give the house and the surroundings a general inspection. Directly behind the structure was the smoking hut, or defumador, as it is called. Inside this are a number of sticks inclined in pyramid form and covered with palm-leaves. In the floor a hole was dug for the fire that serves for coagulating the rubber-milk. Over this pit is hung a sort of frame for guiding the heavy stick employed in the smoking of the rubber. At this time the process had not become for me the familiar story that it was destined to be. Beneath the hut were several unfinished paddles and a canoe under construction. The latter are invariably of the "dugout" type. A shape is roughly cut from a tree-trunk and then a fire is built in the centre and kept burning in the selected places until the trunk is well hollowed out. It is then finished off by hand. Paddles are formed from the buttresses which radiate from the base of the matamata tree, forming thin but very strong spurs. They are easily cut into the desired shape by the men and receive decorations from the hands of the women who often produce striking colour effects. A beautiful scarlet tint is obtained from the fruit of the urueu plant, and the genipapa produces a deep rich-black colour. These dyes are remarkably glossy, and they are waterproof and very stable.

After sunset the launch was off again. Everything went quietly until midnight, when we were awakened with great suddenness. The launch had collided with a huge log that came floating down the stream. It wedged itself between the side of the boat and the lighter and it required much labour to get ourselves loose from it. After we got free, the log tore two of the canoes from their fastenings and they drifted off; but the loss was not discovered until the next morning, when we were about thirty-five miles from the scene of the accident.

Two more days passed without any incident of a more interesting nature than was afforded by occasional stops at lonely barracaos where merchandise was unloaded and fuel for the engine taken in. We were always most cordially received by the people and invited to take coffee, while murmurs of "Esta casa e a suas ordenes" - This house is at your disposal - followed our departure. Unlike many conventional phrases of politeness, I do not know that the sentiment was entirely exaggerated, It is typical of the Brazilian and is to be reckoned with his other good qualities. They always combine a respect for those things that are foreign, with their decided patriotism. The hospitality the stranger receives at their hands is nothing short of marvellous, and no greater insult can be inflicted than to offer to pay for accommodations. I find any retrospective glance over the days I spent among these people coloured with much pleasure when I review incidents connected with my contact with them. There is a word in the Portuguese language which holds a world of meaning for anyone who has been in that land so richly bestowed with the blessings of Nature, Brazil. It is saudades, a word that arouses only the sweetest and tenderest of memories.

There were seven more days of travel before we reached the headquarters of Floresta, the largest rubber-estate in the Javary region. It covers an area somewhat larger than Long Island. Coronel da Silva, the owner, lives in what would be called an unpretentious house in any other place but the Amazon. Here it represents the highest achievement of architecture and modern comfort. It is built on sixteen-foot poles and stands on the outskirts of a half-cleared space which contains also six smaller buildings scattered around. The house had seven medium-sized rooms, equipped with modern furniture of an inexpensive grade. There was also an office which, considering that it was located about 2900 miles from civilisation, could be almost called up-to-date. I remember, for instance, that a clock from New Haven had found its way here. In charge of the office was a secretary, a Mr. da Marinha, who was a man of considerable education and who had graduated in the Federal capital. Several years of health-racking existence in the swamps had made him a nervous and indolent man, upon whose face a smile was never seen. The launch stopped here twenty-four hours, unloading several tons of merchandise, to replenish the store-house close to the river front. I took advantage of the wait to converse with Coronel da Silva. He invited me cordially to stop at his house and spend the summer watching the rubber-work and hunting the game that these forests contained. It was finally proposed that I go with the launch up to the Branco River, only two days' journey distant, and that on its return I should disembark and stay as long as I wished. To this I gladly assented. We departed in the evening bound for the Branco River. On this trip I had my first attack of fever. I had no warning of the approaching danger until a chill suddenly came over me on the first day out from Floresta. I had felt a peculiar drowsiness for several days, but had paid little attention to it as one generally feels drowsy and tired in the oppressive heat and humidity. When to this was added a second chill that shook me from head to foot with such violence that I thought my last hour had come, I knew I was in for my first experience of the dreaded Javary fever. There was nothing to do but to take copious doses of quinine and keep still in my hammock close to the rail of the boat. The fever soon got strong hold of me and I alternated between shivering with cold and burning with a temperature that reached 104 and 105 degrees. Towards midnight it abated somewhat, but left me so nearly exhausted that I was hardly able to raise my head to see where we were going. Our boat kept close to the bank so as to get all possible advantage of the eddying currents.

I was at length aroused from a feverish slumber by being flung suddenly to the deck of the launch with a violent shock, while men and women shouted in excitement that the craft would surely turn over. We were careened at a dangerous angle when I awoke and in my reduced condition it was not difficult to imagine that a capsize was to be the result. But with a ripping, rending sound the launch suddenly righted itself. It developed that we had had a more serious encounter with a protruding branch than in any of the previous collisions. This one had caught on the very upright to which my hammock was secured. The stanchion in this case was iron and its failure to give way had caused the boat to tilt. Finally the iron bent to an S shape and the branch slipped off after tearing the post from its upper fastenings. It was a narrow escape from a calamity, but the additional excitement aggravated my fever and I went from bad to worse. Therefore it was found advisable, when we arrived, late the next day, at the mouth of the Branco, to put me ashore to stay in the hut of the manager of the rubber estate, so that I might not cause the crew and the passengers of the launch inconvenience through my sickness and perhaps ultimate death. I was carried up to the hut and placed in a hammock where I was given a heavy dose of quinine. I dimly remember hearing the farewell-toot of the launch as she left for the down-river trip, and there I was alone in a strange place among people of whose language I understood very little. In the afternoon a young boy was placed in a hammock next to mine, and soon after they brought in a big, heavy Brazilian negro, whom they put on the other side. Like me they were suffering from Javary fever and kept moaning all through the afternoon in their pain, but all three of us were too sick to pay any attention to each other. That night my fever abated a trifle and I could hear the big fellow raving in delirium about snakes and lizards, which he imagined he saw. When the sun rose at six the next morning he was dead. The boy expired during the afternoon.

It was torture to lie under the mosquito-net with the fever pulsing through my veins and keeping my blood at a high temperature, but I dared not venture out, even if I had possessed the strength to do so, for fear of the mosquitoes and the sand-flies which buzzed outside in legions. For several days I remained thus and then began to mend a little. Whether it was because of the greater vitality of the white race or because I had not absorbed a fatal dose, I do not know, but I improved. When I felt well enough, I got up and arranged with the rubber-estate manager to give me two Indians to paddle me and my baggage down to Floresta. I wanted to get down there where I could have better accommodations before I should become sick again.