Through the Andes by A. Hyatt Verrill
Three men and their two retainers go on an archeological expedition into the Andes. There they find a lost civilization.
Through the Andes – Three men and their two retainers go on an archeological expedition into the Andes. After fighting off bandits and losing their entire caravan these five men blaze a trail through the mountains only to find a lost valley. There they find a lost civilization, a monster and dark magic.
Through the Andes (1934)
Chapter I – Off for the Unknown
Chapter II – Ambushed
Chapter III – Beneath the Andes
Part II – What Has Gone Before
Chapter IV – The Valley of Chameleon Men
Chapter V – The Inca’s Treasure House
Chapter VI – In the Forgotten Valley
Chapter VII – The Palace of the King
Part III – Conclusion
Chapter VIII – Red’s Courtship
Chapter IX – An Epochal Discovery
Chapter X – The Monster of the Sacrifice
Chapter XI – In the Den of the Dinosaur
Chapter XII – The Mummy of the Room of Gold
Chapter XIII – Adios!
A. (Alpheus) Hyatt Verrill was born in 1871 in New Haven, Connecticut. He was the son of Addison Emery Verrill, the first professor of zoology at Yale University. He participated in a number of archaeological expeditions to the West Indies, South, and Central America. Theodore Roosevelt stated: “It was my friend Verrill here, who really put the West Indies on the map.”
Through the Andes contains 5 illustrations.
Excerpt: Through the Andes
Off for the Unknown
WHEN we had passed through Cajamarca we had heard rumors of bandits in the mountains. Then, at Porvenir, the Commandante had told us that ever since the last revolution, against the Dictator, Serrano, bands of outlaws had been robbing travelers in the hills. But Don Jaime, at the Hacienda de Dos Rios, had minimized the danger. The Commandante’s outlaws, he declared, showing his strong even teeth in a smile and with one lean hand airily waving all bandits aside, were merely the remnants of the insurrectos who dared not show themselves at the towns and could not return to their own homes, for fear of arrest and a firing squad. “So what would you, señores?” he asked. “…man must live—no? They may steal—yes. They may help themselves to sheep, to the cattle, to the corn and the chickens. But, caramba, do not the soldiers of the gobierno do the same? Yet would the Señor Commandante call them bandits? Bandits! Pouff! I myself ride over the passes and through the hills in the night as well as in the day, and do I see these so-dreadful brigands, these outlaws? Madre de Dios—no! Never, not at all, not one bandit do I meet. Insurrectos, si —ragged, half-starved rascals who, had their cause won, would of a truth be holding fat jobs like that of El Commandante. Cholos* mostly, who were led to take arms by those with more brains and less courage than themselves, who deserted them when they saw defeat. But bandits! Pouff, I say!”
And as El Commandante was a timid soul and wont to exaggerate all things— his own importance included—and as Don Jaime was in a position to know, we decided that brigands were the least of the dangers we faced on our expedition into the wild Achcacuna district. Besides, none of us were the sort to be much troubled by thought of banditti, even if we had taken the Commandante’s words at their face value. We three had been in tight places before. All of us were old hands at the game. We could all shoot and shoot straight, and we had all met some pretty, hard cases of Homo sapiens in our days. “Red,” or more properly, Jimmy Neil, had once served on the Texas Rangers, and bad men had no terror for him. Saunderson, had traveled through brigand-infested portions of the Orient. And I had lived for so long among primitive savage tribes and traditionally hostile Indians that I had developed a sort of contempt for supposedly dangerous human beings, and discounted all tales of bad-men, red or white. And we didn’t have much that would tempt genuine, dyed-in-the-wool bandits, even if they were in the hills. We weren’t carrying money like the paymasters at the mines. On the contrary we were practically penniless as far as specie was concerned, for we were headed for a district where currency had no intrinsic value and we didn’t have twenty-five dollars in real money among us. I think Red’s Masonic ring was the only piece of jewelry in the outfit, and our watches were either Ingersolls or cheap nickel-plated timepieces. Of course there were our guns and ammunition, our food supplies and our camp outfit. But aside from the firearms and the food there wasn’t anything that a bandit could sell or use, and the provisions weren’t enough to tempt any brigand to risk his life. Oh, yes, there were the trade goods. But what outlaw would want glass beads, tin whistles, mouth organs, cotton ribbon, files, hoop iron, cheap butcher knives and scented soap—especially the soap?
And everyone in the country knew all about our expedition, who we were, what we had and where we were going, so there wasn’t much fear of being held up by mistake. Everyone knew we were on a quasi-scientific exploring trip. Saunderson was a sportsman and had joined the party for the sake of the hunting and in the hope of getting a chance to bag some new game to add to his trophies—the spectacled Andean bear, the mountain jaguar, much like the prized snow-leopard of the Himalayas, or even one of the semi-mythical Andean wild goats that the Indians of the high altitudes described. But I think he really went along as much for the adventure entailed by entering an unexplored territory as with the expectation of getting big game, and I’m sure he would have been satisfied with a few vicuñas, a guanaco or two and an ordinary jaguar. I never did know just why I took Red along. Perhaps because his whimsicalities amused me and I felt he would be good company, perhaps because he asked me to take him, and somehow people never could refuse Red, or again it may be that some sixth sense or intuition told me that Fate had decreed that his paths and mine were to cross and that my life —all our lives— would depend upon him. Whatever the reason. Red was along with us. As for myself, I had long wanted to explore the Achcacuna country. It was practically unknown. No white man —at least no white man I had been able to find— had ever explored it. As far as known, none of its inhabitants —if it contained any— had ever appeared in the outlying villages and towns. For some wholly inexplicable reason the ordinary Indians— the Quichuas and Collas— considered it taboo, and not even the government survey planes ever had flown across more than one corner of the district. But even if they had, the pilots couldn’t have seen anything, for the Achcacuna was a jungle-covered valley— or series of valleys— hemmed in by vast mountain ranges. It was, in fact, a sort of detached section of the trans-Andean Montaña— the tropical jungle country of the Amazon tributaries— hidden away among the mountains as if it had been lifted bodily and carried over the eastern ranges and dropped down a couple of hundred miles from where it belonged; a bit of the tropics surrounded with snow-clad peaks.
That much was known from what the men in the army planes had reported. But the reason that I was so keen on getting into the Achcacuna was because I had a hunch that there, if anywhere, I might find remains of the first cultured inhabitants of South America— the pre-pre-Incans from whom the ancient civilizations had sprung. Always, I had contended that the Incan culture and the cultures preceding it, yes, even the immeasurably ancient Tiahuanacan civilization, had come from the east. From my years of study of the Peruvian, Bolivian and other remains, I felt convinced that the religions, the arts, the astronomical and the engineering knowledge of these peoples had been introduced by way of the Amazon, and thence over the Andes, by civilized men from Atlantis of the Mediterranean, thousands of years before the first Inca had appeared on the shores of Lake Titicaca. And if my theory was correct, then it would be logical to assume that these wanderers from the east, coming from semi-tropical lands, penetrating— slowly and perhaps after many years— the Amazonian Valleys, would have established permanent homes, perhaps great cities, in some verdured, warm and sheltered spot before attempting to explore or cross the austere, barren Andes and the deserts. And the Achcacuna was just that type of spot.
Excerpt From: A. Hyatt Verrill. “Through the Andes.”
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