VOYAGE TO TAKE 2 YEARS
Seaplane and Radio Will Be Used to Penetrate Hitherto Uncharted Region
Dr. Alexander Hamilton Rice, surgeon and explorer, who left last March on his seventh expedition to South America, this time to try to reach the headwaters of the Orinoco, is now at Para, Brazil, where he found other members of his party waiting for him. Word to this effect was received yesterday in a letter from Dr. Rice to a friend in New York.
With Dr. Rice is his wife, the former Mrs. George D. Widener, whose husband and son were lost with the Titanic, and Walter Hinton, who piloted the airship NC-4 across the Atlantic. Dr. Rice has with him a large hydroplane, apparatus for a powerful broadcasting station, shallow draught boats and a complete outfit for aerial photography.
While the principal object is to seek the source of the Orinoco, he will explore the regions in which the Orinoco and the Amazon are connected by the great natural canal of Cassiquirae. The trip will take about two years, and he will go into sections of South America never yet reached by the white man.
In his letter Dr. Rice says that trouble began before leaving Rio Harbor for Para and has kept up ever since. "The worst was the breaking of the steering gear, the letter says, "with the ship helpless, until Big Stevens, our aerial photographer, filled the breach, showing the officers not only how to repair it, but doing it himself. The trip up the coast, however, was a diverting one, meeting old friends, enjoying good swims and finally joining up with the New York party, whom we found awaiting our arrival here (Para).
"Hinton showed up this morning coming from Manaos and is returning up river again with us this evening. He has been ill with fever, but seems all right again. Hinton has made four flights over the Rio Negro at about 8,000 feet, the whole town, of course, agog with excitement and out for the occasion. Before many days now, history will be in the making as regards new departures in South American exploration; and the aeroplane and aerial photography as efficient, expeditious and imperative adjuncts to modern, first-class, perfectly equipped expeditions will be conclusively and graphically demonstrated.
"I have been with Paul Le Conti, the famous French explorer, most of the afternoon. He is excitedly enthusiastic about the hydroplane and the objects of the expedition, and believes the whole method of exploration and geographical mapping will be revolutionized."