Official Edgar Rice Burroughs Tribute and Weekly Webzine Site
Since 1996 ~ Over 10,000 Web Pages in Archive
Edgar Rice Burroughs Signature
Master of Imaginative Fantasy Adventure
Creator of Tarzan and "Grandfather of American Science Fiction"
Volume 1446
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 

Many of our featured news clippings are courtesy 
The Dale M. Broadhurst Collection


Is There a 
Chicago Daily Tribune August 3, 1913

NOTE: Edgar Rice Burroughs commenced writing At the Earth's Core, the first novel in the Pellucidar series, in January 1913

Can it be possible that down in the middle of the earth there is another earth? That a few hundred miles or so away, separated from us by ground and rock and vapor and such things, there is a great country inhabited by a great race?

Scientists innumerable have discovered life, vegetable and animal, upon other planets. Long ago the seers and wise men peopled the heavens. Exploration has stretched out toward the truth in all directions save this one. It remains for an Illinoisan to lead us -- in theory -- in that direction -- down, down into the earth's innermost recesses and the wonders thereof.

Marshall B. Gardner of Aurora, the scientist in question, does not say in so many words that people live in the middle of the world. But he makes a circumstantial case to that effect. It is his belief that there is a big sun in the earth's interior, that there are immense holes where the poles are supposed to be, and that the phenomenon of the aurora borealis and the aurora australis are the result of the interior sun shining out through the polar holes.


The Aurora man, who has spent twenty years in studying out his theory, asserts that the earth's interior, instead of being a molten mass of lava, as has been claimed by scientists for ages, is hollow and contains a central nucleus or material sun of about 600 miles in diameter. He says this sun is surrounded by a corona of ample depth which is inclosed within an envelope of atmosphere; that this atmosphere is surrounded by a vacuum, and that between this vacuum and the interior surface of the earth's crust there is another envelope of atmosphere the thickness or depth of which is approximately 200 miles, thus making the diameter of the earth between its two interior surfaces a distance of 6,400.

By adding to this amount 1,600 miles, or twice the thickness of the earth's crust, the diameter of the earth as measured from its exterior surface would be 8,000 miles.

The author of this remarkable theory declares that instead of a north and south pole there is at each of these imaginary points an entrance to the earth's interior 1,400 miles in diameter, or a space sufficiently large when combined to provide an area ample for keeping the interior temperature of the earth in an equable condition. He says that all other planetary bodies of the solar system are substantially of the same general form as is the earth.


"According to my theory," says Gardner, "the earth originally was a mass of nebulous matter projected from a nucleus in the form of a spiral which through centrifugal action evolved itself into a central nucleus surrounded by a ring or wall of nebulous material that was gradually condensed and cooled until that was gradually condensed and cooled until it became a new planet with its central sun and polar openings. Every planet originally was an independent nebula which in the course of time condensed and took its place with others held in the solar system by the attraction of the sun, which is the center of all their orbits.

"Such a configuration as that is I believe and shall endeavor to prove the real one of the earth and of every other planet as well.

"The most obvious objection to such a revolutionary theory is that polar exploration has demonstrated that the old idea of the solid polar caps is correct because the poles have been attained and no such polar openings were discovered as are there according to my theory. This objection is based upon misapprehension of my argument. I claim polar exploration really goes to support my theory. But why did not Peary and other explorers find these polar openings?

"The reason is simple and can best be indicated by asking another question: Why did man not discover by looking about him that he was living on t eh surface of what is, practically speaking, an immense sphere? Simply because the sphere was so large he first thought it was a flat surface, and that he should move over the surface of it appeared so natural that when he was first told it was a sphere he began to wonder why he did not 'fall off.' as he had no conception of the law of gravity.


"Now in the case of the polar explorers the same thing is true. Explorers arrive at the outer edge of the great polar opening, but that opening is so large that the downward curvature of its edge is not perceptible to them, and its diameter is so great that its other side is not visible to them. And to the error that they might 'fall over the edge.' I answer, as the scientists answered the people who wondered why they did not 'fall off the earth'' when they first heard it was a sphere. The force of gravity holds us in both cases.

"But whereas we are accustomed to think the force of gravity pulls us toward the center of the earth, because we thing it is solid, as a matter of fact there is instead a continuous force of gravity throughout the shell of the earth, and its 'center,' if we can still use that term is in the center of the earth's crust, distributed equally throughout its whole area, and therefore working equally in all places.

"This gravity, therefore, hold us down to the surface of the crust on whatever part of it we may be, and as we journey up to the polar opening, around the immense curvature of the earth's crust at that point, and in along the interior surface we are still held down to the surface without noticing any difference. It is this pull of gravity, coming equally from all directions, that also holds the interior sun in its position in the center of the hollow earth.


"Let us take an imaginary journey to the interior of the earth:
"Starting at the arctic circle and proceeding northward over any one of the several routes traversed by polar expeditions, we reach the point marked A on the accompanying diagram. From this point outward and around the semicircle to the point marked D there are observed an increasing number of changes and manifestations peculiar to this region, such as the aurora borealis; the ice pressure observed during still tide an calm weather; the rising temperatures and rapidly diminishing quantity of ice encountered as one travels toward the supposed actual site of the pole, until open water free from ice surrounds the voyager; a south going current of water instead of one flowing northward; certain migratory animals, including traces of hares, foxes, lemming, bears, and musk oxen, which could not have come from warmer lands to the distant south across the immense fields of ice; last, but not least, extremely well preserved bodies of mammoths in icebergs when this animal is supposed to have been extinct for 20,000 years; icebergs in these regions cannot remain intact for that length of time.


"Having reached the point marked D on the diagram, we are now half way around the semicircle, or at the apex of the earth's crust or shelf. Here the magnetic needle of the compass is seen to dip and oscillate in a peculiar manner owing to its being directly opposite to the point marked I, where the magnetic force is focused in t eh same manner as the magnetic properties of an ordinary horseshoe magnet are strongest at the end of either pole.

"At the point marked D we are able to catch our first glimpse of the corona that surrounds the central sun of the earth, because this sun is, according to my theory, approximately only 3,300 miles distant from that point. Therefore it appears reasonable to believe that the corona could be seen and would have the appearance of a sun rising above the horizon under favorable atmosphere conditions.

"Continuing our journey around the semi-circle of the earth's crust, and in reality having pursued a downward or southerly course since leaving the point marked D, we arrive at the point marked E. Here, according to my theory, it is possible for us to see the central sun in its entirety and to realize that we are actually gazing upon the source of the life and energy of an interior world, a world not unlike our own and but 800 miles distant from us through the earth's crust or shell.

"As we leave the point marked E and continue downward the central sun will appear to be rising farther and farther above the horizon until at least it is directly overhead or in the zenith. At this point we will have traversed the entire semicircle of the earth's crust and actually have reached the interior surface of the earth after having traveled 1,200 miles from the point marked A on the diagram, or the exterior surface of the earth.


"Resuming our journey southward, it appears reasonable to believe that we should find conditions somewhat similar to those upon the earth's exterior surface. The exception noted is that the position of the interior sun remains unchanged in it s relation to the earth; consequently there is one continuos day and no change of season within the interior of the earth.

"It is quite evident that a condition of this kind would be productive of all forms of both animal and plant life to a much higher degree than obtains on the outside of the earth with its four seasons and extreme changes of temperatures.

"On account of this equable temperature it is apparent the central sun provides the means necessary for propagating vegetable life to a more luxuriant degree than is possible on the exterior surface, that the various species of land animals which may be found on the interior surface, that the various species of land animals which may be found on the interior surface are through the action of the central sun upon the interior plant life developed to a more prodigious size as a result of the more abundant vegetation and that this extensive growth is due to the increased amount of moisture formed by the interior sun's uninterrupted radiation.


"Let us pause to speculate upon the nature of phenomena and life that may be encountered in this interior world. Here exists one unchanging season and a continuous period of daylight except when certain parts of the earth's interior surface may be partly obscured by intervening clouds or mists raised by the sun's constant rays. Here the heat emanating from the central sun does not affect the temperature to such an extent that either animal or plant life is placed in jeopardy, because any abnormal condition of this heat would be dispersed or modified by inrushing currents of cold air from either or both entrances to the earth's interior. 

Here, indeed, we may expect to find a new world, a world the surface of which is probably subdivided, like ours, into continents, oceans, seas, lakes, and rivers. Here, through the heat of the central sun, plant life may exceed in size and luxuriance any vegetation that ever grew upon the outside surface of the earth. Here may be found strange animals of every description, some of them even larger, perhaps, than the prehistoric mammoth and mastodon, on account of the abundant supply of vegetation, and others of species unrecorded by zoologists. 


"Here, also, may tread the feet of a race of people whose existence is unknown and even unsuspected by us. In fact, the existence of an interior world, such as described, leads us to consider possibilities as ad infinitum in number and character as those suggested at various times by eminent astronomers and other learned students of the planets adjacent to the one upon which we live. 

"But let us return from the realms of speculation and continue our journey southward until the semi-circle at the south polar opening is reached. Here it is possible we shall find conditions practically the same as those encountered when the central sun was first observed by us to be in t eh zenith. As we proceed around the semi-circle of the earth's crust, however, the sun will appear to be going down behind us until at length it disappears below the horizon as we finally reach a point corresponding to D on the semi-circle traversed when entering the earth's interior through the north polar entrance. 

"Until more data concerning the central region of the antarctic circle are obtained than already have been recorded by others I am warranted in claiming that conditions there will be found to be similar to those within the central region of the arctic circle. For this reason the remainder of our journey through the southern entrance to the earth's exterior surface will doubtless be not unlike that to the interior of the earth through the northern entrance.


"Having completed our journey and emerged throughout he south polar opening, I submit herewith certain additional observations in support of my theory that the earth is a hollow sphere with two polar openings, and contains a central sun. The existence of a central sun offers the one practical solution of what the aurora borealis and the aurora australis really are, despite all claims that these phenomena are the result of electricity, as only by the rays of such a sun passing through the north and south polar openings in the earth's crust, and being reflected by a cloudy or dense condition of the atmosphere above these openings, could the northern and southern lights be produced. 

"As the aurora is always confined to the polar regions, varies in color constantly and lasts for varying periods of time, it is obvious that such a manifestation is due to a source other than electricity, because the latter force is, according to those familiar with the laws governing its action, incapable of creating the illumination known as the aurora. 

"I am justified in declaring the only rational theory is that the aurora is produced by means of the earth's central sun, which shoots its rays in all directions. Some of these beams come through the polar openings when they are not prevented by clouds, and if the atmosphere at a certain height above the polar openings is in a dense or opaque condition will be reflected as conditions vary in the upper and uninterrupted air, and also as they vary in the atmosphere of the earth's interior through which the beams pass on their way to the polar openings.

"In this manner the manifestations of the aurora will vary in brightness, color, duration, depth, and apparent height from the earth's exterior surface.


"Unless the earth does contain a central sun which produces and maintains vegetation, the origin of coal, wood, pollen from plants, etc. found by explorers upon the ice and snow within the arctic circle must forever remain a mystery, as it is admitted that such products of vegetable life could not have been carried toward the polar region when the ice is constantly moving away from it, and the nearest trees on the exterior surface of the earth are hundreds on the exterior surface of the earth are hundreds of miles distant from the localities where these material evidences of plant life were discovered. 

"As the quantity of ice diminishes rapidly as one travels toward the polar regions, until an open sea is encountered, it is evident that there must be a source of heat for producing an increase in temperature, and this source cannot be other than a material sun in the center of the earth. 

"As terrific winds suddenly arise within the assumed locality of the poles when the sky is clear, it is apparent that hot air must be supplanting cold air somewhere within that region, and such a change can be ascribed only to currents of cold air rushing into the polar openings to modify or disperse the heat produced by an interior sun.

"As the air within the immediate vicinity of the so-called north pole possesses sufficient warmth to form an almost continuous fog, it is evident that heat sufficient to produce this conditions must come from within the earth through an opening in the earth's crust or shell, as the ray s of the sun do not strike the region so affected. 

As there have been found within the polar regions certain migratory animals which could not possibly have come from more temperate lands in the far south across the arctic fields of ice, the presence of these animals can be explained only by admitting that they originally inhabited the interior of the earth and migrated through the polar opening to the place where found."

A Journey to the Earth's Interior by Marshall B. Gardner (1920)

Hollow Earth
An Introduction to Hollow Earth
Excerpts: Raymond Bernard's  The Hollow Earth, on Gardner
Hollow-Earth Theories: A List of References
Hollow Earth: Strange Beliefs: Pole Holes & the Underworld
The Inner Sun: A Scientific Look 
Hollow Worlds
Gardner Points
Hollow Earth Commentary
Hollow Earth Insider
Hollow Earth Theory
Unnatural Museum Hollow Earth Page
Alaska Science Forum: Hollow Earth Theory
International Society for Complete Earth
World Top Secret: Our Earth is Hollow
Nazis and the Hollow Earth
The Hollow Earth: A Short History
About Hollow Earth and Planets
Secrets of the Hollow Earth
Meta-Religion: The Hollow Earth
Fly to Hollow Earth
Institute for Paralle Studies
Von Horst's Hollow Earth Theory Page

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.

ERBzine Articles
An Earth's Core Notebook By Nkima
ERBzine 1107: John Carter: Sword of Theosophy
- Revisited I by Dale R. Broadhurst

Book in ERB's Personal Library:
Through the Earth (1898)  by Clement Fezandie 237 pages
A highly illustrated, exploring strange forces at the center of the earth

Visit our thousands of other sites at:
ERB Text, ERB Images and Tarzan® are ©Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc.- All Rights Reserved.
All Original Work ©1996-2005/2010 by Bill Hillman and/or Contributing Authors/Owners
No part of this web site may be reproduced without permission from the respective owners.