Theodore Roosevelt (18581919). Through the Brazilian Wilderness. 1914.
bank, in addition to poling where the depth permitted it. The river was as big as the Paraguay at Corumb´; but, in striking contrast to the Paraguay, there were few water-birds. We ran some rather stiff rapids, the Infernino, without unloading, in the morning. In the evening we landed for the night at a large, open, shedlike house, where there were two or three pigs, the first live stock we had seen other than poultry and ducks. It was a dirty place, but we got some eggs.
The following day, the 24th, we ran down some fifty kilometres to the Carupanan rapids, which by observation Lyra found to be in latitude 7° 47′. We met several batelãos, and the houses on the bank showed that the settlers were somewhat better off than was the case farther up. At the rapids was a big store, the property of Senhor Caripe, the wealthiest rubber-man who works on this river; many of the men we met were in his employ. He has himself risen from the ranks. He was most kind and hospitable, and gave us another boat to replace the last of our shovel-nosed dugouts. The large, open house was cool, clean, and comfortable.
With these began a series of half a dozen sets of rapids, all coming within the next dozen kilometres, and all offering very real obstacles. At one we saw the graves of four men who had perished therein; and many more had died whose bodies were never recovered; the toll of human life had been heavy. Had we been still on an unknown river, pioneering our own way, it would doubtless have taken us at least a fortnight of labor and peril to pass. But it actually took only a day and a half. All the channels were known, all the trails cut. Senhor