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Creator of Tarzan and "Grandfather of American Science Fiction"
Edgar Rice Burroughs and the Press
A Life's Journey Through the Newspapers of the World
A Collection of newspaper clippings from
Chicago to Tarzana ~ around the world ~ and back to Encino/Tarzana
This historic clipping is from
The Chicago Tribune ~ October 3, 1909
Click for full size image
He is alive and well, and so are his two companions.
He is living on the interior surface of the earth.
He will be found by a Chicago man in a Chicago airship.
There is no "north pole."
There is nothing but a hole where the "pole" is supposed to be.
Thus does Patrick Enneas McDonnell, Chicago, pumping engineer by profession and inventor and theorist b nature, turn the accepted statements of arctic explorers upside down and decide in his own satisfaction at least that neither Cook nor Peary reached the north "pole," but that they simply descended into the "hole" far enough to make their instruments give an observation of the required 90 degrees necessary to fix the location of the tope of the world.
And Andree, Andree the Swedish explorer who has been missing since 1897,
went the same way.
ACTION THE PROOF OF CONVICTIONS
It is from this race of people, dwellers on, or in, the same planet as our own race, and of whom we have no more knowledge than if they dwelt on the planet Mars, that we, dwellers on the "outer earth," and our origin!
Once communication has been established with them, via airship, the secret of human origin will cease to puzzle, and all the mysteries of human creation be as clear as day. Such, it is to be repeated, is the promise of Patrick Enneas McDonnell, Chicago engineer and dweller on the banks of the old ship canal.
Altogether it is as weird and marvelous a tale of theorizing and planning as may perhaps, be found in the width and breadth of the world, and the little machine shop on south-western limits of the city is the last place one would expect to meet with it.
A long, long journey on a dusty "Archery road" street car, a walk of three blocks across a prairie, a mountain climb over the "spoil banks" of the old canal, and the goal of the explorer who goes hunting after the man who will hunt for Andree is at an end. It isn't as cold as Cook-Peary itinerary, but it is not without its difficulties and excitement. The machine shop is in the rear of the McDonnell home. Chickens cackle around the steps The old ship canal lies placid in its disuse outside the windows. It is an ordinary Chicago scene, but inside the building grimy machinists are working toward the fulfillment of a project as weird and improbable as anything ever conceived in the mind of man.
Columbus only claimed that the world was round, and that by going west one could reach the east. Mr. McDonnell makes Columbus look like a child for sensationalism; he insists that we know only half of the planet we live on, and that the other half, the interior earth, is probably richer, more pleasant, and populated by beings of greater intelligence than ourselves. And he is going there in the airship that the machine shop now is building.
"Look at these cuts," is the old inventor's first request to the visitor, and he produces his picture of a cross section of earth as reproduced on this page. "look at them and you will see the simpleness of my theory. As you see, I claim that the earth is not a solid ball, but a ball with a skin, or cover, about 600 miles thick, and open at the top and bottom. The outside of this skin is what we know as earth, the part that we populate, and which we have explored. The inside, I maintain, is in a way a duplicate of the outside, with vegetation, animal life, and a civilization to be compared with our own. Andree, I maintain, has effected a landing in that inside world, is living there today, and I am going to find him."
INVENTOR PROMISES TO FIND ANDREE
Then the blue Hiberian eyes of Patrick McDonnell light up with satisfaction. That is the signal needed to touch off the fires of his enthusiasm.
"I'll find Andree for you!" he says emphatically. "I'll show the world that he is alive. I am sure of that, as sure as I am of anything else in the world. I will sail over the rim of the world and into the inside. Cook and Peary both went over the rim a little, until they reached far enough over the edge to get an observation of 90 degrees. Their supposed great speed in their final marches was not due to the number of miles they covered, but due to the fact that they had ceased to follow the normal curve of the earth's outside, and were on the smaller curve which leads to the inside. Naturally the degrees of this curve are nearer together than in a much longer one. Hence it ws not surprising that Peary thought he went 40 miles in one of his marches; he covered two-thirds of one of these smaller degrees. He -- and Cook -- great men that they are, did not reach the north pole, because there is no north pole. They merely rounded the shoulder of earth's outer rim; and this is in no way detracts from the glory of their great achievements."
Then follows the emphatic and, to Mr. McDonnell at least, satisfactory demonstration of the new theory. It is printed here in Mr. McDonnell's own words. It will be seen that the proposed expedition in search of Andree has not been planned without much serious thought and scientific research on the part of the promulgator of this startling idea.
THEORY EXPLAINED BY McDONNELL
"Andrees's balloon was rated by the best aeronautical authorities to be good for thirty days floatage; five days -- 120 hours -- at twenty miles rate would bring him 2,400 miles south of the pole, any side of which would be near enough to civilization to have heard something of Andree.
"It is said that Gen. A. W. Greely, U.S.A., had told Andree before he started on his perilous trip that the meteorological observations taken under his directions in the far north latitudes gave the wind as blowing toward the north from all sides nearly continually, making it improbable for a floating balloon to be able to extricate itself from the polar center.
"I believe that Andree's fate was that his balloon floated rapidly and
easily to the polar center and around the curve into the interior, into
which there is a strong wind blowing along the surface continually and
from which it returns at high altitude, such as his balloon was unable
"One of my reasons for this theory is that the ice breaks up the more the polar center is approached from the eighty-fifth degree, and floats south, carrying dogs, sledges and men in a southerly direction. While they are tugging northward, until at last it is nip and tuck between the two speeds, the floating ice winning the battles of the brave up to the present time.
"The fact that the ice breaks up as the polar center is approached from the eighty-fifth degree, even with ice farther south in good condition, has some profound meaning that as yet has not been ascertained. That the ice breaks up first beyond the eighty-sixth degree is positive proof of warmer temperature near the central point, so that the long held theory of 'unfrozen sea' in the far north, as a reason for this and the going north of certain water fowl from beyond the eighty-third degree at the approach of winter, would still hold good.
"The icebergs are of such thick dimensions that it is well understood they augment from the top upward, instead of from the bottom downward, as in dry freezing;
therefore, rains must fall on the ice and freeze upward. Even though we admit that the waves dash the water over the ice bodies , which conditions do exist to a great extent, yet observed phenomena as to large flat icebergs with perpendicular faces, as if split, will not admit of wave formation; while even in such a case, it should be admitted the bergs would have sufficient spaces of water between to make large waves, still proving a milder climate farther north. The vapor for these rains, then, should come from these unfrozen waters at the polar center.
"Another point in the evidence testifying to the ice breaking up in the far north is produced by Explorer Nansen's attempt to have the Fram float across the pole with the ice.
"The Fram froze up in the ice at 79 degrees north, 135 degrees east, and ice and ship drifted from one side of the pole to nearly the opposite in about three years. The record shows that the Fram drifted but 210 miles from the seventy-ninth degree to a northwesterly point about the eighty-first degree, from Sept. 22, 1893, to Oct. 1, 1894, nearly a year; while from Oct 1, 1894, to Dec. 25, 1894, about three months, it drifted from the eighty-first degree to 83.24 -- still northwesterly -- 250 miles. Again, from Dec. 25, 1894 -- four months -- it drifted 75 miles north by west and beyond the eighty-fourth degree, where Nansen, leaving the ship, made his dash for the pole. But from May 1, 1895, to April, 1896 -- one year -- while beyond the eighty-fourth degree, ship and ice drifted over 500 miles, where it turned south for Dane's island at ten degrees east, reaching port in August of the same year.
MEASUREMENTS MADE IN STRAIGHT LINES
"If Nansen's record is even nearly correct, it proves that the farther north, after we go beyond the eighty-fourth degree, the more the ice is broken up and moves. These measurements and data of Nansen's drift are taken from the map of 'North Pole Regions of 1907,' by the National Geographic Society.
"The debris of the Jennette and the specially made casks by the National Geographic society that were picked up on the opposite side of the pole from which they were started, in from four to five years, the routes of which are but conjectural, while being no data, go to show that the far north ice is always changing positions and conditions, and the more so the farther north of the eighty-first degree we go."
WHERE DID THE MAMMOTHS COME FROM?
"The theory heretofore held by scientists, that these mastodons froze up at a remote period -- a million or so years ago -- when, s they claim, the earth rotated at right angles with its present direction (our present poles being on the line of the the equator at that time), and that the sudden cooling froze up the animal life of those parts, and retained these mammoths in cold storage at the north pole ever since, to float in here at this late day, will not impress any logician seriously; particularly since late data of the most convincing contradictory nature bearing on these lines are available.
"Therefore, the only reasonable explanation is that these mammoths and remains of other animals found in countless numbers on our northernmost coasts are of recent origin, met accidental death, and floated in from the north from some land where conditions were favor-able for plant and animal existence. "The mammoth found in 1799 in a cake of ice near the mouth of the Lena river was in such a state of preservation that some of its flesh was eaten by the natives and the rest given to their dogs. The skeleton and hide were treated taxidermically and are yet in the museum in St. Petersburg. The eyes of this mammoth elephant had no iris, and their construction indicated that it had existed in a region of continual light. Its coat of hair separates it form the present species of elephants now existing. The bulbs and leaves found in its stomach were in a state of preservation and showed tropical growth, and the texture of the plants denoted existence in a land of great fertility.
"This land I believe to be the interior surface of this earth's shell. A land where perpetual light of a most beautifully bright phosphorescent glow, of an electrical origin, emanating from every direction, permeates even the interstices of the existing dense foliage, making shadows and seasons unknown; giving a universal and mild climate imbued with electricity in its mos soothing form, and exuberant productiveness and prolongation of mammoth plant and animal life.
"Americus Symmes claimed the hole at the pole to be 1,500 miles in diameter. I had not heard of the Symmes theory until long after I was print with nearly the same thing. Neither have I had the pleasure of reading up his arguments, and know noting of them but those quoted in Prof. Campbell's work, but will say, if the data used in the quotations are founded on facts, Symmes' arguments can be answered in no other reasonable way than this earth is hollow and open at the poles.
"POLE" EITHER HOLE OR FLAT PLAIN
"A curvature of small radius would bring the horizon close and make the line of vision short, and such would be the condition should there be an opening into an interior surface. The opening would have a diameter of 656.7 miles, less the thickness of the earth's shell, which would give in the nature of the theory an opening of less than 200 miles, providing the curvatures -- see the cut -- were parts of true circles.
"That the outer surface of this earth has been peopled by mankind who existed first on its interior surface is at least circumstantially proven by the resemblance plainly noticeable between the Chinese and American Indians, which gives strong color to the point that they both came from the north -- the Indian across the Behring strait, south into California, and east over the western hemisphere, while the Mongolians crossed the Nova Zembia and the Franz Josef Land group of islands; or the progenitors of both may have separated at Spitzbergen, the American Indian part coming in from northern Greenland to the center of the western hemisphere; while the Mongolian part could have gone the way just mentioned and out through Siberia into China.
"It is held, however, by anthropologists that the Indian stock peopled the west before they did the east of our western hemisphere; this and that the tracing of the origin of man point north continually while followed go to prove that this reasoning for an interior surface is as logical as any theory that has been put forth as to where the garden of Eden existed.
"Andree, as I have said, after following in his balloon the air currents near the earth until they carried him past the edge of the earth crust and into the interior of the planet, found that the currents which would carry him out of the hole and back to the outer world were at an altitude impossible for him to achieve. His balloon was entirely at the mercy of the wind's whims. Andree, finding that he could not return, landed on the inside of the world. There is, I repeat, every reason to believe that there is vegetation and growth there sufficient to support life in abundance. I am sure Andree found it so. I am confident that he is living in there today.
"My expedition in search of him will consist of three airships, each capable of making a speed of eighty miles an hour, and of carrying fuel and provisions sufficient for a week 's stay in the air. Having strong motive power, we can go into the earth's interior and return in spite of contrary air currents, which Prof. Andree could not. This is what makes such a trip feasible, and this airship of any manufacture, I am positive , will be the means of opening our eyes by the discovery of another world inside the one we now fancy to constitute the whole of 'mother earth'."
AIRSHIP LONG IN ITS CONSTRUCTION
Mr. McDonnell takes a key from the nail and leads the way out of the machine shop to a big shed in the rear of the yard. The door is unlocked, the visitor ushered in, and the framework of the McDonnell airship stands before him. The framework suggests two gigantic "paddle wheels" of the kind used on low water rivers, made out of thin tubing and wires. Each wheel contains a dozen wings or sails, canvas covered, and revolving under the power from a gasoline motor. The wings are under the control of the operator, and ascent, descent and steering are done by altering the angle at which the wings "take hold" of the air. It is simple - when the inventor is at hand to explain it all, at least.
"Will you permit THE SUNDAY TRIBUNE to make a photograph of the ship to publish for the illumination of its readers?" he was asked.
"Well, I should say not!" The old inventor suddenly grew stern. "I wouldn't let anybody see it but you." The visitor is gently ushered out onto the prairie.
"I've been working at the idea since 1872," said McDonnell, thoughtfully. "I've go it now; the only thing to do is to go on and complete it. Then" -- the sharp eyes gleam again -- "it will mean more to the man who first goes into the interior of the world than it did to the man who discovered the north pole. And there can be no question that it will -- if the interior is anything like what pictures itself to the fancy of Patrick Enneas McDonnell.
Edgar Rice Burroughs:
At the Earth's Core: ERB C.H.A.S.E.R.
At the Earth's Core: e-Text Edition
Pellucidar: ERB C.H.A.S.E.R.
Pellucidar: e-Text Edition
Tanar of Pellucidar: ERB C.H.A.S.E.R.
Tarzan at the Earth's Core: ERB C.H.A.S.E.R.
Back to the Stone Age: ERB C.H.A.S.E.R.
Land of Terror: ERB: C.H.A.S.E.R.
Savage Pellucidar: ERB C.H.A.S.E.R.
Books in ERB's Personal Library:
Farthest North: Being
The Record Of A Voyage Of Exploration
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