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Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919). Through the Brazilian Wilderness. 1914.

Page 217

not necessarily in permanently better fashion, if Colonel Rondon’s anticipations about the development of mining, especially gold mining, are realized. In any event the region will be a healthy home for a considerable agricultural and pastoral population. Above all, the many swift streams with their numerous waterfalls, some of great height and volume, offer the chance for the upgrowth of a number of big manufacturing communities, knit by rail-roads to one another and to the Atlantic coast and the valleys of the Paraguay, Madeira, and Amazon, and feeding and being fed by the dwellers in the rich, hot, alluvial lowlands that surround this elevated territory. The work of Colonel Rondon and his associates of the Telegraphic Commission has been to open this great and virgin land to the knowledge of the world and to the service of their nation. In doing so they have incidentally founded the Brazilian school of exploration. Before their day almost all the scientific and regular exploration of Brazil was done by foreigners. But, of course, there was much exploration and settlement by nameless Brazilians, who were merely endeavoring to make new homes or advance their private fortunes: in recent years by rubber-gatherers, for instance, and a century ago by those bold and restless adventurers, partly of Portuguese and partly of Indian blood, the Paolistas, from one of whom Colonel Rondon is himself descended on his father’s side.
  The camp by this river was in some old and grown-up fields, once the seat of a rather extensive maize and mandioc cultivation by the Nhambiquaras. On this day Cherrie got a number of birds new to the collection, and two or three of them probably new to science. We had