APPENDIX C. My Letter of May 1 to General Lauro Muller

The first report on the expedition, made by me immediately after my arrival at Manaos, and published in Rio Janeiro upon its receipt, is as follows:

                     MAY 1st, 1914.


  I wish first to express my profound acknowledgments to you personally 
  and to the other members of the Brazilian Government whose generous 
  courtesy alone rendered possible the Expedicao Scientifica Roosevelt- 
  Rondon. I wish also to express my high admiration and regard for 
  Colonel Rondon and his associates who have been my colleagues in this 
  work of exploration. In the third place I wish to point out that what 
  we have just done was rendered possible only by the hard and perilous 
  labor of the Brazilian Telegraphic Commission in the unexplored 
  western wilderness of Matto Grosso during the last seven years. We 
  have had a hard and somewhat dangerous but very successful trip. No 
  less than six weeks were spent in slowly and with peril and exhausting 
  labor forcing our way down through what seemed a literally endless 
  succession of rapids and cataracts. For forty-eight days we saw no 
  human being. In passing these rapids we lost five of the seven canoes 
  with which we started and had to build others. One of our best men 
  lost his life in the rapids. Under the strain one of the men went 
  completely bad, shirked all his work, stole his comrades' food and 
  when punished by the sergeant he with cold-blooded deliberation 
  murdered the sergeant and fled into the wilderness. Colonel Rondon's 
  dog running ahead of him while hunting, was shot by two Indians; by 
  his death he in all probability saved the life of his master. We have 
  put on the map a river about 1500 kilometres in length running from 
  just south of the 13th degree to north of the 5th degree and the 
  biggest affluent of the Madeira. Until now its upper course has been 
  utterly unknown to every one, and its lower course although known for 
  years to the rubbermen utterly unknown to all cartographers. Its 
  source is between the 12th and 13th parallels of latitude south, and 
  between longitude 59 degrees and longitude 60 degrees west from 
  Greenwich. We embarked on it about at latitude 12 degrees 1 minute 
  south and longitude 60 degrees 18 west. After that its entire course 
  was between the 60th and 61st degrees of longitude approaching the 
  latter most closely about in latitude 8 degrees 15 minutes. The first 
  rapids were at Navaite in 11 degrees 44 minutes and after that they 
  were continuous and very difficult and dangerous until the rapids 
  named after the murdered sergeant Paishon in 11 degrees 12 minutes. At 
  11 degrees 23 minutes the river received the Rio Kermit from the left. 
  At 11 degrees 22 minutes the Marciano Avila entered it from the right. 
  At 11 degrees 18 minutes the Taunay entered from the left. At 10 
  degrees 58 minutes the Cardozo entered from the right. At 10 degrees 
  24 minutes we encountered the first rubberman. The Rio Branco entered 
  from the left at 9 degrees 38 minutes. We camped at 8 degrees 49 
  minutes or approximately the boundary line between Matto Grosso and 
  Amazonas. The confluence with the upper Aripuanan, which entered from 
  the right, was in 7 degrees 34 minutes. The mouth where it entered the 
  Madeira was in about 5 degrees 30 minutes. The stream we have followed 
  down is that which rises farthest away from the mouth and its general 
  course is almost due north.

  My dear Sir, I thank you from my heart for the chance to take part in 
  this great work of exploration.

  With high regard and respect, believe me

       Very sincerely yours,