Typewritten manuscript (duplicate) account of the unsuccessful first North-West Patrol of New Guinea from December 1926 to July 1927.
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The object of the North-West Patrol was "to ascertain the source of the Fly River and to find a pass across into the Mandated Territory" (p. 1). The manuscript records the unsuccessful first attempt at the south-north crossing at its widest point from December 1926 to July 1927. Led by Charles H. Karius with Ivan F. Champion as second-in-command and accompanied by a party of local police and carriers the expedition was especially significant for being a sole undertaking of the Papuan Service (and not in concert with the Mandated Territory). It was with the knowledge acquired on this first expedition that Karius and Champion were ultimately able to complete the south to north crossing on their second attempt from September 1927 to January 1928. The North-West Patrol was later described by the Lieutenant-Governor of Papua Sir Hubert Murray as "by far the most important and most difficult feat of exploration that has ever been performed in New Guinea". (Quanchi & Robson 2005 p. 86) The manuscript comprises Karius' diary on 43 single-sided foolscap leaves dated 3 December 1926 to 10 June 1927; plus Champion's diary on 64 single-sided foolscap leaves from 1 May to 14 July; plus 5 leaves of Appendix. Each leaf is individually mounted (the first and second leaves partly defective with slight loss). Hand-written manuscript corrections presumably by Champion throughout. Preserved in folio size cloth bound volume in the front of which is an original double-sided A.L.S. from a John Barnshaw dated 26 March 1954 regarding the above: "Enclosed you will find the somewhat battered remains of the Champion typescripts. After 25 years oblivion in the dim recesses of a drawer I am afraid the mice or silverfish have started their work. This is the story of how I acquired this m.s. As a young man of 20 I first went to New Guinea immediately after World War I and on returning to Sydney shortly after I conceived the youthfully romantic - but of course utterly fantastic - idea of crossing the island from south to north - alone! - and of being the first white to do so. It was not until 1927 that I had sufficient money to undertake the enterprise when to my dismay word arrived in Sydney that Karius & Champion had successfully made the journey. I immediately wrote to Champion who had just returned to Moresby and he sent me down the duplicate of his draft copy which I now enclose..."Ivan Champion published an account of his explorations in Across New Guinea from the Fly to the Sepik issued in London by Constable in 1932. He was subsequently decorated by the Royal Geographical Society in 1938 for Exploration in North Eastern New Guinea. Karius was awarded the Patron's Medal of the Royal Geographical Society.
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Stock No.: 181125
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