Theodore Roosevelt (18581919). Through the Brazilian Wilderness. 1914.
floating dial is preferred it should be of aluminum and nothing smaller than two and one half inches, for the same reason as mentioned above regarding the prismatic compass.
Expense should not be spared if it is necessary to secure good compasses. Avoid paper dials and leather cases which absorb moisture. The campass case should allow taking apart for cleaning and drying.
The regular chronometer movement, because of its delicacy, is out of the question for rough land or water travel. We had with us a small-sized half-chronometer movement recently brought out by the Waltham Company as a yacht chronometer. It gave a surprisingly even rate under the most adverse conditions. I was sorry to lose it in the rapids of the Papagaio when our canoes went down.
The watches should be waterproof with strong cases, and several should be taken. It would be well to have a dozen cheap but good watches and the same number of compasses for use around camp and for gifts or trade along the line of travel. Money is of no value after one leaves the settlements. I was surprised to find that many of the rubber hunters were not provided with compasses, and I listened to an American who told of having been lost in the depths of the great forest where for days he lived on monkey meat secured with his rifle until he found his way to the river. He had no compass and could not get one. I was sorry I had none to give; I had lost mine in the rapids.
For the determination of latitude and longitude there is nothing better than a small four or five inch theodolite