"By Aeroplane to Pygmyland" Accounts of the 1926 Smithsonian-Dutch Expedition to New Guinea

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Journal of Matthew Stirling
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October 2, 1926 : Damuneru Village ; Explorators Camp/Tombe Village

October 2

This morning Dick, Stan and I, with a couple of soldiers, one Dyak and 8 convicts, started on our way southwest. Igoon says the trail to Agintawa leads from Damuneru so we went first to Damuneru, a hard climb in the hot sun, as the carriers are carrying very heavy loads. The transport goes considerably slower than a Dyak transport but the Malays do pretty well at that. At Damuneru I hired a guide for a cowrie; a friendly, intelligent fellow whom I know of old. When we made camp in the evening he went off into the jungle and rustled a lot of food in the shape of fern tips and shoots of tree ferns. He made fire at our request with his bamboo strips and generally lent a helping hand around camp. We made a place {p. 278} for him to sleep at the end of the carriers' shelter. The trail thus far has been quite good without many ups and downs.

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