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´╗┐Title: The Smoky God; Or, A Voyage to the Inner World
Author: Emerson, Willis George, 1856-1918
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Smoky God; Or, A Voyage to the Inner World" ***

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A Voyage to the Inner World

By Willis George Emerson

Author Of "Buell Hampton," "The Builders," Etc.

Copyright, 1908,

     MY WIFE

NB: I have removed running heads and page numbers, have joined footnotes
spread over two or more pages, have moved footnotes to a position
immediately below the paragraph that refers to them, and have changed
footnote numbers from 1 at the beginning of each note to a sequence
of 1-25. I have also enclosed each footnote number in the text within
square brackets and have enclosed each entire footnote within square
brackets as well.

Note: I have made the following changes to the text: PAGE NOTE LINE
ORIGINAL CHANGED TO  97          10  to              too
 126           4  Heddekel        Hiddekel
 139     1     3  Cratyluo        Cratylus
 147          11  tiouous         tinuous
 178          18  Los-            Los
 180     1    17  Scoreby,        Scoresby,






    "He is the God who sits in the center, on
  the navel of the earth, and he is the interpreter
  of religion to all mankind."--PLATO.


I FEAR the seemingly incredible story which I am about to relate will be
regarded as the result of a distorted intellect superinduced, possibly,
by the glamour of unveiling a marvelous mystery, rather than a truthful
record of the unparalleled experiences related by one Olaf Jansen, whose
eloquent madness so appealed to my imagination that all thought of an
analytical criticism has been effectually dispelled.

Marco Polo will doubtless shift uneasily in his grave at the strange
story I am called upon to chronicle; a story as strange as a Munchausen
tale. It is also incongruous that I, a disbeliever, should be the one
to edit the story of Olaf Jansen, whose name is now for the first time
given to the world, yet who must hereafter rank as one of the notables
of earth.

I freely confess his statements admit of no rational analysis, but have
to do with the profound mystery concerning the frozen North that for
centuries has claimed the attention of scientists and laymen alike.

However much they are at variance with the cosmographical manuscripts of
the past, these plain statements may be relied upon as a record of the
things Olaf Jansen claims to have seen with his own eyes.

A hundred times I have asked myself whether it is possible that the
world's geography is incomplete, and that the startling narrative of
Olaf Jansen is predicated upon demonstrable facts. The reader may be
able to answer these queries to his own satisfaction, however far the
chronicler of this narrative may be from having reached a conviction.
Yet sometimes even I am at a loss to know whether I have been led away
from an abstract truth by the ignes fatui of a clever superstition, or
whether heretofore accepted facts are, after all, founded upon falsity.

It may be that the true home of Apollo was not at Delphi, but in that
older earth-center of which Plato speaks, where he says: "Apollo's
real home is among the Hyperboreans, in a land of perpetual life, where
mythology tells us two doves flying from the two opposite ends of the
world met in this fair region, the home of Apollo. Indeed, according
to Hecataeus, Leto, the mother of Apollo, was born on an island in the
Arctic Ocean far beyond the North Wind."

It is not my intention to attempt a discussion of the theogony of the
deities nor the cosmogony of the world. My simple duty is to enlighten
the world concerning a heretofore unknown portion of the universe, as it
was seen and described by the old Norseman, Olaf Jansen.

Interest in northern research is international. Eleven nations are
engaged in, or have contributed to, the perilous work of trying to solve
Earth's one remaining cosmological mystery.

There is a saying, ancient as the hills, that "truth is stranger than
fiction," and in a most startling manner has this axiom been brought
home to me within the last fortnight.

It was just two o'clock in the morning when I was aroused from a restful
sleep by the vigorous ringing of my door-bell. The untimely disturber
proved to be a messenger bearing a note, scrawled almost to the point
of illegibility, from an old Norseman by the name of Olaf Jansen. After
much deciphering, I made out the writing, which simply said: "Am ill
unto death. Come." The call was imperative, and I lost no time in making
ready to comply.

Perhaps I may as well explain here that Olaf Jansen, a man who quite
recently celebrated his ninety-fifth birthday, has for the last
half-dozen years been living alone in an unpretentious bungalow out
Glendale way, a short distance from the business district of Los
Angeles, California.

It was less than two years ago, while out walking one afternoon that
I was attracted by Olaf Jansen's house and its homelike surroundings,
toward its owner and occupant, whom I afterward came to know as a
believer in the ancient worship of Odin and Thor.

There was a gentleness in his face, and a kindly expression in the
keenly alert gray eyes of this man who had lived more than four-score
years and ten; and, withal, a sense of loneliness that appealed to my
sympathy. Slightly stooped, and with his hands clasped behind him, he
walked back and forth with slow and measured tread, that day when first
we met. I can hardly say what particular motive impelled me to pause
in my walk and engage him in conversation. He seemed pleased when I
complimented him on the attractiveness of his bungalow, and on the
well-tended vines and flowers clustering in profusion over its windows,
roof and wide piazza.

I soon discovered that my new acquaintance was no ordinary person, but
one profound and learned to a remarkable degree; a man who, in the later
years of his long life, had dug deeply into books and become strong in
the power of meditative silence.

I encouraged him to talk, and soon gathered that he had resided only six
or seven years in Southern California, but had passed the dozen years
prior in one of the middle Eastern states. Before that he had been a
fisherman off the coast of Norway, in the region of the Lofoden Islands,
from whence he had made trips still farther north to Spitzbergen and
even to Franz Josef Land.

When I started to take my leave, he seemed reluctant to have me go, and
asked me to come again. Although at the time I thought nothing of it,
I remember now that he made a peculiar remark as I extended my hand in
leave-taking. "You will come again?" he asked. "Yes, you will come again
some day. I am sure you will; and I shall show you my library and tell
you many things of which you have never dreamed, things so wonderful
that it may be you will not believe me."

I laughingly assured him that I would not only come again, but would be
ready to believe whatever he might choose to tell me of his travels and

In the days that followed I became well acquainted with Olaf Jansen,
and, little by little, he told me his story, so marvelous, that its very
daring challenges reason and belief. The old Norseman always expressed
himself with so much earnestness and sincerity that I became enthralled
by his strange narrations.

Then came the messenger's call that night, and within the hour I was at
Olaf Jansen's bungalow.

He was very impatient at the long wait, although after being summoned I
had come immediately to his bedside.

"I must hasten," he exclaimed, while yet he held my hand in greeting.
"I have much to tell you that you know not, and I will trust no one but
you. I fully realize," he went on hurriedly, "that I shall not survive
the night. The time has come to join my fathers in the great sleep."

I adjusted the pillows to make him more comfortable, and assured him
I was glad to be able to serve him in any way possible, for I was
beginning to realize the seriousness of his condition.

The lateness of the hour, the stillness of the surroundings, the uncanny
feeling of being alone with the dying man, together with his weird
story, all combined to make my heart beat fast and loud with a feeling
for which I have no name. Indeed, there were many times that night by
the old Norseman's couch, and there have been many times since, when a
sensation rather than a conviction took possession of my very soul, and
I seemed not only to believe in, but actually see, the strange lands,
the strange people and the strange world of which he told, and to hear
the mighty orchestral chorus of a thousand lusty voices.

For over two hours he seemed endowed with almost superhuman strength,
talking rapidly, and to all appearances, rationally. Finally he gave
into my hands certain data, drawings and crude maps. "These," said he in
conclusion, "I leave in your hands. If I can have your promise to give
them to the world, I shall die happy, because I desire that people may
know the truth, for then all mystery concerning the frozen Northland
will be explained. There is no chance of your suffering the fate
I suffered. They will not put you in irons, nor confine you in a
mad-house, because you are not telling your own story, but mine, and I,
thanks to the gods, Odin and Thor, will be in my grave, and so beyond
the reach of disbelievers who would persecute."

Without a thought of the farreaching results the promise entailed, or
foreseeing the many sleepless nights which the obligation has since
brought me, I gave my hand and with it a pledge to discharge faithfully
his dying wish.

As the sun rose over the peaks of the San Jacinto, far to the eastward,
the spirit of Olaf Jansen, the navigator, the explorer and worshiper of
Odin and Thor, the man whose experiences and travels, as related, are
without a parallel in all the world's history, passed away, and I was
left alone with the dead.

And now, after having paid the last sad rites to this strange man
from the Lofoden Islands, and the still farther "Northward Ho!", the
courageous explorer of frozen regions, who in his declining years (after
he had passed the four-score mark) had sought an asylum of restful peace
in sun-favored California, I will undertake to make public his story.

But, first of all, let me indulge in one or two reflections:

Generation follows generation, and the traditions from the misty past
are handed down from sire to son, but for some strange reason interest
in the ice-locked unknown does not abate with the receding years, either
in the minds of the ignorant or the tutored.

With each new generation a restless impulse stirs the hearts of men to
capture the veiled citadel of the Arctic, the circle of silence, the
land of glaciers, cold wastes of waters and winds that are strangely
warm. Increasing interest is manifested in the mountainous icebergs, and
marvelous speculations are indulged in concerning the earth's center of
gravity, the cradle of the tides, where the whales have their nurseries,
where the magnetic needle goes mad, where the Aurora Borealis illumines
the night, and where brave and courageous spirits of every generation
dare to venture and explore, defying the dangers of the "Farthest

One of the ablest works of recent years is "Paradise Found, or the
Cradle of The Human Race at the North Pole," by William F. Warren. In
his carefully prepared volume, Mr. Warren almost stubbed his toe against
the real truth, but missed it seemingly by only a hair's breadth, if the
old Norseman's revelation be true.

Dr. Orville Livingston Leech, scientist, in a recent article, says:

"The possibilities of a land inside the earth were first brought to my
attention when I picked up a geode on the shores of the Great Lakes.
The geode is a spherical and apparently solid stone, but when broken is
found to be hollow and coated with crystals. The earth is only a larger
form of a geode, and the law that created the geode in its hollow form
undoubtedly fashioned the earth in the same way."

In presenting the theme of this almost incredible story, as told by
Olaf Jansen, and supplemented by manuscript, maps and crude drawings
entrusted to me, a fitting introduction is found in the following

"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth, and the earth
was without form and void." And also, "God created man in his own
image." Therefore, even in things material, man must be God-like,
because he is created in the likeness of the Father.

A man builds a house for himself and family. The porches or verandas are
all without, and are secondary. The building is really constructed for
the conveniences within.

Olaf Jansen makes the startling announcement through me, an humble
instrument, that in like manner, God created the earth for the
"within"--that is to say, for its lands, seas, rivers, mountains,
forests and valleys, and for its other internal conveniences, while the
outside surface of the earth is merely the veranda, the porch, where
things grow by comparison but sparsely, like the lichen on the mountain
side, clinging determinedly for bare existence.

Take an egg-shell, and from each end break out a piece as large as
the end of this pencil. Extract its contents, and then you will have
a perfect representation of Olaf Jansen's earth. The distance from the
inside surface to the outside surface, according to him, is about three
hundred miles. The center of gravity is not in the center of the earth,
but in the center of the shell or crust; therefore, if the thickness of
the earth's crust or shell is three hundred miles, the center of gravity
is one hundred and fifty miles below the surface.

In their log-books Arctic explorers tell us of the dipping of the needle
as the vessel sails in regions of the farthest north known. In reality,
they are at the curve; on the edge of the shell, where gravity is
geometrically increased, and while the electric current seemingly dashes
off into space toward the phantom idea of the North Pole, yet this same
electric current drops again and continues its course southward along
the inside surface of the earth's crust.

In the appendix to his work, Captain Sabine gives an account of
experiments to determine the acceleration of the pendulum in different
latitudes. This appears to have resulted from the joint labor of Peary
and Sabine. He says: "The accidental discovery that a pendulum on being
removed from Paris to the neighborhood of the equator increased its
time of vibration, gave the first step to our present knowledge that the
polar axis of the globe is less than the equatorial; that the force of
gravity at the surface of the earth increases progressively from the
equator toward the poles."

According to Olaf Jansen, in the beginning this old world of ours was
created solely for the "within" world, where are located the four great
rivers--the Euphrates, the Pison, the Gihon and the Hiddekel. These same
names of rivers, when applied to streams on the "outside" surface of
the earth, are purely traditional from an antiquity beyond the memory of

On the top of a high mountain, near the fountain-head of these four
rivers, Olaf Jansen, the Norseman, claims to have discovered the
long-lost "Garden of Eden," the veritable navel of the earth, and to
have spent over two years studying and reconnoitering in this marvelous
"within" land, exuberant with stupendous plant life and abounding in
giant animals; a land where the people live to be centuries old, after
the order of Methuselah and other Biblical characters; a region where
one-quarter of the "inner" surface is water and three-quarters land;
where there are large oceans and many rivers and lakes; where the
cities are superlative in construction and magnificence; where modes
of transportation are as far in advance of ours as we with our boasted
achievements are in advance of the inhabitants of "darkest Africa."

The distance directly across the space from inner surface to inner
surface is about six hundred miles less than the recognized diameter of
the earth. In the identical center of this vast vacuum is the seat of
electricity--a mammoth ball of dull red fire--not startlingly brilliant,
but surrounded by a white, mild, luminous cloud, giving out uniform
warmth, and held in its place in the center of this internal space by
the immutable law of gravitation. This electrical cloud is known to the
people "within" as the abode of "The Smoky God." They believe it to be
the throne of "The Most High."

Olaf Jansen reminded me of how, in the old college days, we were all
familiar with the laboratory demonstrations of centrifugal motion, which
clearly proved that, if the earth were a solid, the rapidity of its
revolution upon its axis would tear it into a thousand fragments.

The old Norseman also maintained that from the farthest points of land
on the islands of Spitzbergen and Franz Josef Land, flocks of geese may
be seen annually flying still farther northward, just as the sailors and
explorers record in their log-books. No scientist has yet been audacious
enough to attempt to explain, even to his own satisfaction, toward what
lands these winged fowls are guided by their subtle instinct. However,
Olaf Jansen has given us a most reasonable explanation.

The presence of the open sea in the Northland is also explained. Olaf
Jansen claims that the northern aperture, intake or hole, so to speak,
is about fourteen hundred miles across. In connection with this, let us
read what Explorer Nansen writes, on page 288 of his book: "I have never
had such a splendid sail. On to the north, steadily north, with a good
wind, as fast as steam and sail can take us, an open sea mile after
mile, watch after watch, through these unknown regions, always clearer
and clearer of ice, one might almost say: 'How long will it last?' The
eye always turns to the northward as one paces the bridge. It is gazing
into the future. But there is always the same dark sky ahead which means
open sea." Again, the Norwood Review of England, in its issue of May
10, 1884, says: "We do not admit that there is ice up to the Pole--once
inside the great ice barrier, a new world breaks upon the explorer, the
climate is mild like that of England, and, afterward, balmy as the Greek

Some of the rivers "within," Olaf Jansen claims, are larger than our
Mississippi and Amazon rivers combined, in point of volume of water
carried; indeed their greatness is occasioned by their width and depth
rather than their length, and it is at the mouths of these mighty
rivers, as they flow northward and southward along the inside surface
of the earth, that mammoth icebergs are found, some of them fifteen and
twenty miles wide and from forty to one hundred miles in length.

Is it not strange that there has never been an iceberg encountered
either in the Arctic or Antarctic Ocean that is not composed of fresh
water? Modern scientists claim that freezing eliminates the salt, but
Olaf Jansen claims differently.

Ancient Hindoo, Japanese and Chinese writings, as well as the
hieroglyphics of the extinct races of the North American continent,
all speak of the custom of sun-worshiping, and it is possible, in the
startling light of Olaf Jansen's revelations, that the people of the
inner world, lured away by glimpses of the sun as it shone upon the
inner surface of the earth, either from the northern or the southern
opening, became dissatisfied with "The Smoky God," the great pillar or
mother cloud of electricity, and, weary of their continuously mild and
pleasant atmosphere, followed the brighter light, and were finally led
beyond the ice belt and scattered over the "outer" surface of the earth,
through Asia, Europe, North America and, later, Africa, Australia and
South America. (1)

(1 The following quotation is significant; "It follows that man
issuing from a mother-region still undetermined but which a number
of considerations indicate to have been in the North, has radiated in
several directions; that his migrations have been constantly from North
to South."--M. le Marquis G. de Saporta, in Popular Science Monthly,
October, 1883, page 753.)

It is a notable fact that, as we approach the Equator, the stature of
the human race grows less. But the Patagonians of South America are
probably the only aborigines from the center of the earth who came out
through the aperture usually designated as the South Pole, and they are
called the giant race.

Olaf Jansen avers that, in the beginning, the world was created by
the Great Architect of the Universe, so that man might dwell upon
its "inside" surface, which has ever since been the habitation of the

They who were driven out of the "Garden of Eden" brought their
traditional history with them.

The history of the people living "within" contains a narrative
suggesting the story of Noah and the ark with which we are familiar. He
sailed away, as did Columbus, from a certain port, to a strange land
he had heard of far to the northward, carrying with him all manner
of beasts of the fields and fowls of the air, but was never heard of

On the northern boundaries of Alaska, and still more frequently on
the Siberian coast, are found boneyards containing tusks of ivory in
quantities so great as to suggest the burying-places of antiquity. From
Olaf Jansen's account, they have come from the great prolific animal
life that abounds in the fields and forests and on the banks of numerous
rivers of the Inner World. The materials were caught in the ocean
currents, or were carried on ice-floes, and have accumulated like
driftwood on the Siberian coast. This has been going on for ages, and
hence these mysterious bone-yards.

On this subject William F. Warren, in his book already cited, pages 297
and 298, says: "The Arctic rocks tell of a lost Atlantis more wonderful
than Plato's. The fossil ivory beds of Siberia excel everything of
the kind in the world. From the days of Pliny, at least, they have
constantly been undergoing exploitation, and still they are the chief
headquarters of supply. The remains of mammoths are so abundant that, as
Gratacap says, 'the northern islands of Siberia seem built up of crowded
bones.' Another scientific writer, speaking of the islands of New
Siberia, northward of the mouth of the River Lena, uses this language:
'Large quantities of ivory are dug out of the ground every year. Indeed,
some of the islands are believed to be nothing but an accumulation of
drift-timber and the bodies of mammoths and other antediluvian animals
frozen together.' From this we may infer that, during the years that
have elapsed since the Russian conquest of Siberia, useful tusks from
more than twenty thousand mammoths have been collected."

But now for the story of Olaf Jansen. I give it in detail, as set down
by himself in manuscript, and woven into the tale, just as he placed
them, are certain quotations from recent works on Arctic exploration,
showing how carefully the old Norseman compared with his own experiences
those of other voyagers to the frozen North. Thus wrote the disciple of
Odin and Thor:


MY name is Olaf Jansen. I am a Norwegian, although I was born in the
little seafaring Russian town of Uleaborg, on the eastern coast of the
Gulf of Bothnia, the northern arm of the Baltic Sea.

My parents were on a fishing cruise in the Gulf of Bothnia, and put
into this Russian town of Uleaborg at the time of my birth, being the
twenty-seventh day of October, 1811.

My father, Jens Jansen, was born at Rodwig on the Scandinavian coast,
near the Lofoden Islands, but after marrying made his home at Stockholm,
because my mother's people resided in that city. When seven years old,
I began going with my father on his fishing trips along the Scandinavian

Early in life I displayed an aptitude for books, and at the age of nine
years was placed in a private school in Stockholm, remaining there until
I was fourteen. After this I made regular trips with my father on all
his fishing voyages.

My father was a man fully six feet three in height, and weighed over
fifteen stone, a typical Norseman of the most rugged sort, and capable
of more endurance than any other man I have ever known. He possessed the
gentleness of a woman in tender little ways, yet his determination and
will-power were beyond description. His will admitted of no defeat.

I was in my nineteenth year when we started on what proved to be our
last trip as fishermen, and which resulted in the strange story that
shall be given to the world,--but not until I have finished my earthly

I dare not allow the facts as I know them to be published while I am
living, for fear of further humiliation, confinement and suffering.
First of all, I was put in irons by the captain of the whaling vessel
that rescued me, for no other reason than that I told the truth about
the marvelous discoveries made by my father and myself. But this was far
from being the end of my tortures.

After four years and eight months' absence I reached Stockholm, only to
find my mother had died the previous year, and the property left by my
parents in the possession of my mother's people, but it was at once made
over to me.

All might have been well, had I erased from my memory the story of our
adventure and of my father's terrible death.

Finally, one day I told the story in detail to my uncle, Gustaf
Osterlind, a man of considerable property, and urged him to fit out an
expedition for me to make another voyage to the strange land.

At first I thought he favored my project. He seemed interested, and
invited me to go before certain officials and explain to them, as I
had to him, the story of our travels and discoveries. Imagine my
disappointment and horror when, upon the conclusion of my narrative,
certain papers were signed by my uncle, and, without warning, I found
myself arrested and hurried away to dismal and fearful confinement in
a madhouse, where I remained for twenty-eight years--long, tedious,
frightful years of suffering!

I never ceased to assert my sanity, and to protest against the injustice
of my confinement. Finally, on the seventeenth of October, 1862, I
was released. My uncle was dead, and the friends of my youth were now
strangers. Indeed, a man over fifty years old, whose only known record
is that of a madman, has no friends.

I was at a loss to know what to do for a living, but instinctively
turned toward the harbor where fishing boats in great numbers were
anchored, and within a week I had shipped with a fisherman by the name
of Yan Hansen, who was starting on a long fishing cruise to the Lofoden

Here my earlier years of training proved of the very greatest advantage,
especially in enabling me to make myself useful. This was but the
beginning of other trips, and by frugal economy I was, in a few years,
able to own a fishing-brig of my own. For twenty-seven years thereafter
I followed the sea as a fisherman, five years working for others, and
the last twenty-two for myself.

During all these years I was a most diligent student of books, as well
as a hard worker at my business, but I took great care not to mention
to anyone the story concerning the discoveries made by my father and
myself. Even at this late day I would be fearful of having any one see
or know the things I am writing, and the records and maps I have in
my keeping. When my days on earth are finished, I shall leave maps and
records that will enlighten and, I hope, benefit mankind.

The memory of my long confinement with maniacs, and all the horrible
anguish and sufferings are too vivid to warrant my taking further

In 1889 I sold out my fishing boats, and found I had accumulated a
fortune quite sufficient to keep me the remainder of my life. I then
came to America.

For a dozen years my home was in Illinois, near Batavia, where I
gathered most of the books in my present library, though I brought many
choice volumes from Stockholm. Later, I came to Los Angeles, arriving
here March 4, 1901. The date I well remember, as it was President
McKinley's second inauguration day. I bought this humble home and
determined, here in the privacy of my own abode, sheltered by my own
vine and fig-tree, and with my books about me, to make maps and drawings
of the new lands we had discovered, and also to write the story in
detail from the time my father and I left Stockholm until the tragic
event that parted us in the Antarctic Ocean.

I well remember that we left Stockholm in our fishing-sloop on the third
day of April, 1829, and sailed to the southward, leaving Gothland
Island to the left and Oeland Island to the right. A few days later we
succeeded in doubling Sandhommar Point, and made our way through the
sound which separates Denmark from the Scandinavian coast. In due time
we put in at the town of Christiansand, where we rested two days, and
then started around the Scandinavian coast to the westward, bound for
the Lofoden Islands.

My father was in high spirit, because of the excellent and gratifying
returns he had received from our last catch by marketing at Stockholm,
instead of selling at one of the seafaring towns along the Scandinavian
coast. He was especially pleased with the sale of some ivory tusks that
he had found on the west coast of Franz Joseph Land during one of his
northern cruises the previous year, and he expressed the hope that this
time we might again be fortunate enough to load our little fishing-sloop
with ivory, instead of cod, herring, mackerel and salmon.

We put in at Hammerfest, latitude seventy-one degrees and forty minutes,
for a few days' rest. Here we remained one week, laying in an extra
supply of provisions and several casks of drinking-water, and then
sailed toward Spitzbergen.

For the first few days we had an open sea and a favoring wind, and then
we encountered much ice and many icebergs. A vessel larger than our
little fishing-sloop could not possibly have threaded its way among
the labyrinth of icebergs or squeezed through the barely open channels.
These monster bergs presented an endless succession of crystal
palaces, of massive cathedrals and fantastic mountain ranges, grim and
sentinel-like, immovable as some towering cliff of solid rock, standing;
silent as a sphinx, resisting the restless waves of a fretful sea.

After many narrow escapes, we arrived at Spitzbergen on the 23d of
June, and anchored at Wijade Bay for a short time, where we were quite
successful in our catches. We then lifted anchor and sailed through the
Hinlopen Strait, and coasted along the North-East-Land.(2)

(2 It will be remembered that Andree started on his fatal balloon voyage
from the northwest coast of Spitzbergen.)

A strong wind came up from the southwest, and my father said that we had
better take advantage of it and try to reach Franz Josef Land, where,
the year before he had, by accident, found the ivory tusks that had
brought him such a good price at Stockholm.

Never, before or since, have I seen so many sea-fowl; they were so
numerous that they hid the rocks on the coast line and darkened the sky.

For several days we sailed along the rocky coast of Franz Josef Land.
Finally, a favoring wind came up that enabled us to make the West Coast,
and, after sailing twenty-four hours, we came to a beautiful inlet.

One could hardly believe it was the far Northland. The place was green
with growing vegetation, and while the area did not comprise more than
one or two acres, yet the air was warm and tranquil. It seemed to be at
that point where the Gulf Stream's influence is most keenly felt.(3)

(3 Sir John Barrow, Bart., F.R.S., in his work entitled "Voyages of
Discovery and Research Within the Arctic Regions," says on page 57:
"Mr. Beechey refers to what has frequently been found and noticed--the
mildness of the temperature on the western coast of Spitzbergen, there
being little or no sensation of cold, though the thermometer might be
only a few degrees above the freezing-point. The brilliant and lively
effect of a clear day, when the sun shines forth with a pure sky, whose
azure hue is so intense as to find no parallel even in the boasted
Italian sky.")

On the east coast there were numerous icebergs, yet here we were in open
water. Far to the west of us, however, were icepacks, and still farther
to the westward the ice appeared like ranges of low hills. In front of
us, and directly to the north, lay an open sea.(4)

(4 Captain Kane, on page 299, quoting from Morton's Journal on Monday,
the 26th of December, says: "As far as I could see, the open passages
were fifteen miles or more wide, with sometimes mashed ice separating
them. But it is all small ice, and I think it either drives out to the
open space to the north or rots and sinks, as I could see none ahead to
the north.")

My father was an ardent believer in Odin and Thor, and had frequently
told me they were gods who came from far beyond the "North Wind."

There was a tradition, my father explained, that still farther northward
was a land more beautiful than any that mortal man had ever known, and
that it was inhabited by the "Chosen."(5)

(5 We find the following in "Deutsche Mythologie," page 778, from the
pen of Jakob Grimm; "Then, the sons of Bor built in the middle of the
universe the city called Asgard, where dwell the gods and their kindred,
and from that abode work out so many wondrous things both on the earth
and in the heavens above it. There is in that city a place called
Illidskjalf, and when Odin is seated there upon his lofty throne he sees
over the whole world and discerns all the actions of men.")

My youthful imagination was fired by the ardor, zeal and religious
fervor of my good father, and I exclaimed: "Why not sail to this goodly
land? The sky is fair, the wind favorable and the sea open."

Even now I can see the expression of pleasurable surprise on his
countenance as he turned toward me and asked: "My son, are you
willing to go with me and explore--to go far beyond where man has ever
ventured?" I answered affirmatively. "Very well," he replied. "May the
god Odin protect us!" and, quickly adjusting the sails, he glanced at
our compass, turned the prow in due northerly direction through an open
channel, and our voyage had begun.(6)

(6 Hall writes, on page 288: "On the 23rd of January the two Esquimaux,
accompanied by two of the seamen, went to Cape Lupton. They reported a
sea of open water extending as far as the eye could reach.")

The sun was low in the horizon, as it was still the early summer.
Indeed, we had almost four months of day ahead of us before the frozen
night could come on again.

Our little fishing-sloop sprang forward as if eager as ourselves for
adventure. Within thirty-six hours we were out of sight of the highest
point on the coast line of Franz Josef Land. We seemed to be in a
strong current running north by northeast. Far to the right and to the
left of us were icebergs, but our little sloop bore down on the narrows
and passed through channels and out into open seas--channels so narrow
in places that, had our craft been other than small, we never could have
gotten through.

On the third day we came to an island. Its shores were washed by an open
sea. My father determined to land and explore for a day. This new land
was destitute of timber, but we found a large accumulation of drift-wood
on the northern shore. Some of the trunks of the trees were forty feet
long and two feet in diameter.(7)

(7 Greely tells us in vol. 1, page 100, that: "Privates Connell and
Frederick found a large coniferous tree on the beach, just above the
extreme high-water mark. It was nearly thirty inches in circumference,
some thirty feet long, and had apparently been carried to that point
by a current within a couple of years. A portion of it was cut up for
fire-wood, and for the first time in that valley, a bright, cheery
camp-fire gave comfort to man.")

After one day's exploration of the coast line of this island, we lifted
anchor and turned our prow to the north in an open sea.(8)

(8 Dr. Kane says, on page 379 of his works: "I cannot imagine what
becomes of the ice. A strong current sets in constantly to the north;
but, from altitudes of more than five hundred feet, I saw only narrow
strips of ice, with great spaces of open water, from ten to fifteen
miles in breadth, between them. It must, therefore, either go to an open
space in the north, or dissolve.")

I remember that neither my father nor myself had tasted food for almost
thirty hours. Perhaps this was because of the tension of excitement
about our strange voyage in waters farther north, my father said, than
anyone had ever before been. Active mentality had dulled the demands of
the physical needs.

Instead of the cold being intense as we had anticipated, it was really
warmer and more pleasant than it had been while in Hammerfest on the
north coast of Norway, some six weeks before.(9)

(9 Captain Peary's second voyage relates another circumstance which may
serve to confirm a conjecture which has long been maintained by some,
that an open sea, free of ice, exists at or near the Pole. "On the
second of November," says Peary, "the wind freshened up to a gale from
north by west, lowered the thermometer before midnight to 5 degrees,
whereas, a rise of wind at Melville Island was generally accompanied
by a simultaneous rise in the thermometer at low temperatures. May not
this," he asks, "be occasioned by the wind blowing over an open sea in
the quarter from which the wind blows? And tend to confirm the opinion
that at or near the Pole an open sea exists?")

We both frankly admitted that we were very hungry, and forthwith I
prepared a substantial meal from our well-stored larder. When we had
partaken heartily of the repast, I told my father I believed I would
sleep, as I was beginning to feel quite drowsy. "Very well," he replied,
"I will keep the watch."

I have no way to determine how long I slept; I only know that I was
rudely awakened by a terrible commotion of the sloop. To my surprise,
I found my father sleeping soundly. I cried out lustily to him, and
starting up, he sprang quickly to his feet. Indeed, had he not instantly
clutched the rail, he would certainly have been thrown into the seething

A fierce snow-storm was raging. The wind was directly astern, driving
our sloop at a terrific speed, and was threatening every moment to
capsize us. There was no time to lose, the sails had to be lowered
immediately. Our boat was writhing in convulsions. A few icebergs we
knew were on either side of us, but fortunately the channel was open
directly to the north. But would it remain so? In front of us, girding
the horizon from left to right, was a vaporish fog or mist, black as
Egyptian night at the water's edge, and white like a steam-cloud toward
the top, which was finally lost to view as it blended with the great
white flakes of falling snow. Whether it covered a treacherous iceberg,
or some other hidden obstacle against which our little sloop would dash
and send us to a watery grave, or was merely the phenomenon of an Arctic
fog, there was no way to determine.(10)

(10 On page 284 of his works, Hall writes: "From the top of Providence
Berg, a dark fog was seen to the north, indicating water. At 10 a. m.
three of the men (Kruger, Nindemann and Hobby) went to Cape Lupton to
ascertain if possible the extent of the open water. On their return they
reported several open spaces and much young ice--not more than a day
old, so thin that it was easily broken by throwing pieces of ice upon

By what miracle we escaped being dashed to utter destruction, I do not
know. I remember our little craft creaked and groaned, as if its joints
were breaking. It rocked and staggered to and fro as if clutched by some
fierce undertow of whirlpool or maelstrom.

Fortunately our compass had been fastened with long screws to a
crossbeam. Most of our provisions, however, were tumbled out and swept
away from the deck of the cuddy, and had we not taken the precaution at
the very beginning to tie ourselves firmly to the masts of the sloop, we
should have been swept into the lashing sea.

Above the deafening tumult of the raging waves, I heard my father's
voice. "Be courageous, my son," he shouted, "Odin is the god of the
waters, the companion of the brave, and he is with us. Fear not."

To me it seemed there was no possibility of our escaping a horrible
death. The little sloop was shipping water, the snow was falling so
fast as to be blinding, and the waves were tumbling over our counters in
reckless white-sprayed fury. There was no telling what instant we should
be dashed against some drifting ice-pack. The tremendous swells would
heave us up to the very peaks of mountainous waves, then plunge us
down into the depths of the sea's trough as if our fishing-sloop were a
fragile shell. Gigantic white-capped waves, like veritable walls, fenced
us in, fore and aft.

This terrible nerve-racking ordeal, with its nameless horrors of
suspense and agony of fear indescribable, continued for more than three
hours, and all the time we were being driven forward at fierce speed.
Then suddenly, as if growing weary of its frantic exertions, the wind
began to lessen its fury and by degrees to die down.

At last we were in a perfect calm. The fog mist had also disappeared,
and before us lay an iceless channel perhaps ten or fifteen miles
wide, with a few icebergs far away to our right, and an intermittent
archipelago of smaller ones to the left.

I watched my father closely, determined to remain silent until he spoke.
Presently he untied the rope from his waist and, without saying a word,
began working the pumps, which fortunately were not damaged, relieving
the sloop of the water it had shipped in the madness of the storm.

He put up the sloop's sails as calmly as if casting a fishing-net, and
then remarked that we were ready for a favoring wind when it came. His
courage and persistence were truly remarkable.

On investigation we found less than one-third of our provisions
remaining, while to our utter dismay, we discovered that our water-casks
had been swept overboard during the violent plungings of our boat.

Two of our water-casks were in the main hold, but both were empty. We
had a fair supply of food, but no fresh water. I realized at once the
awfulness of our position. Presently I was seized with a consuming
thirst. "It is indeed bad," remarked my father. "However, let us dry
our bedraggled clothing, for we are soaked to the skin. Trust to the god
Odin, my son. Do not give up hope."

The sun was beating down slantingly, as if we were in a southern
latitude, instead of in the far Northland. It was swinging around, its
orbit ever visible and rising higher and higher each day, frequently
mist-covered, yet always peering through the lacework of clouds
like some fretful eye of fate, guarding the mysterious Northland and
jealously watching the pranks of man. Far to our right the rays decking
the prisms of icebergs were gorgeous. Their reflections emitted flashes
of garnet, of diamond, of sapphire. A pyrotechnic panorama of countless
colors and shapes, while below could be seen the green-tinted sea, and
above, the purple sky.


I TRIED to forget my thirst by busying myself with bringing up some food
and an empty vessel from the hold. Reaching over the side-rail, I filled
the vessel with water for the purpose of laving my hands and face. To my
astonishment, when the water came in contact with my lips, I could taste
no salt. I was startled by the discovery. "Father!" I fairly gasped,
"the water, the water; it is fresh!" "What, Olaf?" exclaimed my father,
glancing hastily around. "Surely you are mistaken. There is no land. You
are going mad." "But taste it!" I cried.

And thus we made the discovery that the water was indeed fresh,
absolutely so, without the least briny taste or even the suspicion of a
salty flavor.

We forthwith filled our two remaining water-casks, and my father
declared it was a heavenly dispensation of mercy from the gods Odin and

We were almost beside ourselves with joy, but hunger bade us end our
enforced fast. Now that we had found fresh water in the open sea, what
might we not expect in this strange latitude where ship had never before
sailed and the splash of an oar had never been heard? (11)

(11 In vol. I, page 196, Nansen writes: "It is a peculiar
phenomenon,--this dead water. We had at present a better opportunity of
studying it than we desired. It occurs where a surface layer of fresh
water rests upon the salt water of the sea, and this fresh water is
carried along with the ship gliding on the heavier sea beneath it as if
on a fixed foundation. The difference between the two strata was in this
case so great that while we had drinking water on the surface, the water
we got from the bottom cock of the engine-room was far too salt to be
used for the boiler.")

We had scarcely appeased our hunger when a breeze began filling the
idle sails, and, glancing at the compass, we found the northern point
pressing hard against the glass.

In response to my surprise, my father said, "I have heard of this
before; it is what they call the dipping of the needle."

We loosened the compass and turned it at right angles with the surface
of the sea before its point would free itself from the glass and point
according to unmolested attraction. It shifted uneasily, and seemed as
unsteady as a drunken man, but finally pointed a course.

Before this we thought the wind was carrying us north by northwest, but,
with the needle free, we discovered, if it could be relied upon, that we
were sailing slightly north by northeast. Our course, however, was ever
tending northward.(12)

(12 In volume II, pages 18 and 19, Nansen writes about the inclination
of the needle. Speaking of Johnson, his aide: "One day--it was November
24--he came in to supper a little after six o'clock, quite alarmed,
and said: 'There has just been a singular inclination of the needle
in twenty-four degrees. And remarkably enough, its northern extremity
pointed to the east.'"

We again find in Peary's first voyage--page 67,--the following: "It had
been observed that from the moment they had entered Lancaster Sound, the
motion of the compass needle was very sluggish, and both this and its
deviation increased as they progressed to the westward, and continued to
do so in descending this inlet. Having reached latitude 73 degrees, they
witnessed for the first time the curious phenomenon of the directive
power of the needle becoming so weak as to be completely overcome by the
attraction of the ship, so that the needle might now be said to point to
the north pole of the ship.")

The sea was serenely smooth, with hardly a choppy wave, and the wind
brisk and exhilarating. The sun's rays, while striking us aslant,
furnished tranquil warmth. And thus time wore on day after day, and we
found from the record in our logbook, we had been sailing eleven days
since the storm in the open sea.

By strictest economy, our food was holding out fairly well, but
beginning to run low. In the meantime, one of our casks of water had
been exhausted, and my father said: "We will fill it again." But, to
our dismay, we found the water was now as salt as in the region of the
Lofoden Islands off the coast of Norway. This necessitated our being
extremely careful of the remaining cask.

I found myself wanting to sleep much of the time; whether it was the
effect of the exciting experience of sailing in unknown waters, or the
relaxation from the awful excitement incident to our adventure in a
storm at sea, or due to want of food, I could not say.

I frequently lay down on the bunker of our little sloop, and looked
far up into the blue dome of the sky; and, notwithstanding the sun was
shining far away in the east, I always saw a single star overhead. For
several days, when I looked for this star, it was always there directly
above us.

It was now, according to our reckoning, about the first of August. The
sun was high in the heavens, and was so bright that I could no longer
see the one lone star that attracted my attention a few days earlier.

One day about this time, my father startled me by calling my attention
to a novel sight far in front of us, almost at the horizon. "It is a
mock sun," exclaimed my father. "I have read of them; it is called a
reflection or mirage. It will soon pass away."

But this dull-red, false sun, as we supposed it to be, did not pass away
for several hours; and while we were unconscious of its emitting any
rays of light, still there was no time thereafter when we could not
sweep the horizon in front and locate the illumination of the so-called
false sun, during a period of at least twelve hours out of every

Clouds and mists would at times almost, but never entirely, hide its
location. Gradually it seemed to climb higher in the horizon of the
uncertain purply sky as we advanced.

It could hardly be said to resemble the sun, except in its circular
shape, and when not obscured by clouds or the ocean mists, it had a
hazy-red, bronzed appearance, which would change to a white light like a
luminous cloud, as if reflecting some greater light beyond.

We finally agreed in our discussion of this smoky furnace-colored sun,
that, whatever the cause of the phenomenon, it was not a reflection of
our sun, but a planet of some sort--a reality.(13)

(13 Nansen, on page 394, says: "To-day another noteworthy thing
happened, which was that about mid-day we saw the sun, or to be more
correct, an image of the sun, for it was only a mirage. A peculiar
impression was produced by the sight of that glowing fire lit just
above the outermost edge of the ice. According to the enthusiastic
descriptions given by many Arctic travelers of the first appearance of
this god of life after the long winter night, the impression ought to
be one of jubilant excitement; but it was not so in my case. We had not
expected to see it for some days yet, so that my feeling was rather one
of pain, of disappointment that we must have drifted farther south than
we thought. So it was with pleasure I soon discovered that it could not
be the sun itself. The mirage was at first a flattened-out, glowing red,
streak of fire on the horizon; later there were two streaks, the one
above the other, with a dark space between; and from the maintop I could
see four, or even five, such horizontal lines directly over one another,
all of equal length, as if one could only imagine a square, dull-red
sun, with horizontal dark streaks across it.")

One day soon after this, I felt exceedingly drowsy, and fell into a
sound sleep. But it seemed that I was almost immediately aroused by
my father's vigorous shaking of me by the shoulder and saying: "Olaf,
awaken; there is land in sight!"

I sprang to my feet, and oh! joy unspeakable! There, far in the
distance, yet directly in our path, were lands jutting boldly into the
sea. The shore-line stretched far away to the right of us, as far as the
eye could see, and all along the sandy beach were waves breaking into
choppy foam, receding, then going forward again, ever chanting in
monotonous thunder tones the song of the deep. The banks were covered
with trees and vegetation.

I cannot express my feeling of exultation at this discovery. My father
stood motionless, with his hand on the tiller, looking straight ahead,
pouring out his heart in thankful prayer and thanksgiving to the gods
Odin and Thor.

In the meantime, a net which we found in the stowage had been cast, and
we caught a few fish that materially added to our dwindling stock of

The compass, which we had fastened back in its place, in fear of another
storm, was still pointing due north, and moving on its pivot, just as it
had at Stockholm. The dipping of the needle had ceased. What could this
mean? Then, too, our many days of sailing had certainly carried us far
past the North Pole. And yet the needle continued to point north. We
were sorely perplexed, for surely our direction was now south.(14)

(14 Peary's first voyage, pages 69 and 70, says:

     "On reaching Sir Byam Martin's Island, the nearest to
     Melville Island, the latitude of the place of observation was
     75 degrees - 09' - 23", and the longitude 103
     degrees - 44' - 37"; the dip of the magnetic needle 88
     degrees - 25' - 56" west in the longitude of 91
     degrees - 48', where the last observations on the shore
     had been made, to 165 degrees - 50' - 09", east, at
     their present station, so that we had," says Peary, "in sailing
     over the space included between these two meridians, crossed
     immediately northward of the magnetic pole, and had undoubtedly
     passed over one of those spots upon the globe where the needle
     would have been found to vary 180 degrees, or in other
     words, where the North Pole would have pointed to the south.")

We sailed for three days along the shoreline, then came to the mouth of
a fjord or river of immense size. It seemed more like a great bay, and
into this we turned our fishing-craft, the direction being slightly
northeast of south. By the assistance of a fretful wind that came to our
aid about twelve hours out of every twenty-four, we continued to make
our way inland, into what afterward proved to be a mighty river, and
which we learned was called by the inhabitants Hiddekel.

We continued our journey for ten days thereafter, and found we had
fortunately attained a distance inland where ocean tides no longer
affected the water, which had become fresh.

The discovery came none too soon, for our remaining cask of water was
well-nigh exhausted. We lost no time in replenishing our casks, and
continued to sail farther up the river when the wind was favorable.

Along the banks great forests miles in extent could be seen stretching
away on the shore-line. The trees were of enormous size. We landed after
anchoring near a sandy beach, and waded ashore, and were rewarded by
finding a quantity of nuts that were very palatable and satisfying
to hunger, and a welcome change from the monotony of our stock of

It was about the first of September, over five months, we calculated,
since our leave-taking from Stockholm. Suddenly we were frightened
almost out of our wits by hearing in the far distance the singing of
people. Very soon thereafter we discovered a huge ship gliding down the
river directly toward us. Those aboard were singing in one mighty chorus
that, echoing from bank to bank, sounded like a thousand voices, filling
the whole universe with quivering melody. The accompaniment was played
on stringed instruments not unlike our harps.

It was a larger ship than any we had ever seen, and was differently

(15 Asiatic Mythology,--page 240, "Paradise found"--from translation
by Sayce, in a book called "Records of the Past," we were told of a
"dwelling" which "the gods created for" the first human beings,--a
dwelling in which they "became great" and "increased in numbers," and
the location of which is described in words exactly corresponding
to those of Iranian, Indian, Chinese, Eddaic and Aztecan literature;
namely, "in the center of the earth."--Warren.)

At this particular time our sloop was becalmed, and not far from the
shore. The bank of the river, covered with mammoth trees, rose up
several hundred feet in beautiful fashion. We seemed to be on the edge
of some primeval forest that doubtless stretched far inland.

The immense craft paused, and almost immediately a boat was lowered
and six men of gigantic stature rowed to our little fishing-sloop. They
spoke to us in a strange language. We knew from their manner,
however, that they were not unfriendly. They talked a great deal among
themselves, and one of them laughed immoderately, as though in finding
us a queer discovery had been made. One of them spied our compass, and
it seemed to interest them more than any other part of our sloop.

Finally, the leader motioned as if to ask whether we were willing to
leave our craft to go on board their ship. "What say you, my son?" asked
my father. "They cannot do any more than kill us."

"They seem to be kindly disposed," I replied, "although what terrible
giants! They must be the select six of the kingdom's crack regiment.
Just look at their great size."

"We may as well go willingly as be taken by force," said my father,
smiling, "for they are certainly able to capture us." Thereupon he made
known, by signs, that we were ready to accompany them.

Within a few minutes we were on board the ship, and half an hour later
our little fishing-craft had been lifted bodily out of the water by a
strange sort of hook and tackle, and set on board as a curiosity.

There were several hundred people on board this, to us, mammoth ship,
which we discovered was called "The Naz," meaning, as we afterward
learned, "Pleasure," or to give a more proper interpretation, "Pleasure
Excursion" ship.

If my father and I were curiously observed by the ship's occupants, this
strange race of giants offered us an equal amount of wonderment.

There was not a single man aboard who would not have measured fully
twelve feet in height. They all wore full beards, not particularly
long, but seemingly short-cropped. They had mild and beautiful faces,
exceedingly fair, with ruddy complexions. The hair and beard of some
were black, others sandy, and still others yellow. The captain, as we
designated the dignitary in command of the great vessel, was fully a
head taller than any of his companions. The women averaged from ten
to eleven feet in height. Their features were especially regular and
refined, while their complexion was of a most delicate tint heightened
by a healthful glow.(16)

(16 "According to all procurable data, that spot at the era of man's
appearance upon the stage was in the now lost 'Miocene continent,' which
then surrounded the Arctic Pole. That in that true, original Eden some
of the early generations of men attained to a stature and longevity
unequaled in any countries known to postdiluvian history is by no means
scientifically incredible."--Wm. F. Warren, "Paradise Found," p. 284.)

Both men and women seemed to possess that particular ease of manner
which we deem a sign of good breeding, and, notwithstanding their huge
statures, there was nothing about them suggesting awkwardness. As I was
a lad in only my nineteenth year, I was doubtless looked upon as a true
Tom Thumb. My father's six feet three did not lift the top of his head
above the waist line of these people.

Each one seemed to vie with the others in extending courtesies and
showing kindness to us, but all laughed heartily, I remember, when they
had to improvise chairs for my father and myself to sit at table.
They were richly attired in a costume peculiar to themselves, and very
attractive. The men were clothed in handsomely embroidered tunics of
silk and satin and belted at the waist. They wore knee-breeches and
stockings of a fine texture, while their feet were encased in sandals
adorned with gold buckles. We early discovered that gold was one of
the most common metals known, and that it was used extensively in

Strange as it may seem, neither my father nor myself felt the least bit
of solicitude for our safety. "We have come into our own," my father
said to me. "This is the fulfillment of the tradition told me by my
father and my father's father, and still back for many generations of
our race. This is, assuredly, the land beyond the North Wind."

We seemed to make such an impression on the party that we were given
specially into the charge of one of the men, Jules Galdea, and his wife,
for the purpose of being educated in their language; and we, on our
part, were just as eager to learn as they were to instruct.

At the captain's command, the vessel was swung cleverly about, and began
retracing its course up the river. The machinery, while noiseless, was
very powerful.

The banks and trees on either side seemed to rush by. The ship's speed,
at times, surpassed that of any railroad train on which I have ever
ridden, even here in America. It was wonderful.

In the meantime we had lost sight of the sun's rays, but we found a
radiance "within" emanating from the dull-red sun which had already
attracted our attention, now giving out a white light seemingly from
a cloud-bank far away in front of us. It dispensed a greater light, I
should say, than two full moons on the clearest night.

In twelve hours this cloud of whiteness would pass out of sight as if
eclipsed, and the twelve hours following corresponded with our night.
We early learned that these strange people were worshipers of this great
cloud of night. It was "The Smoky God" of the "Inner World."

The ship was equipped with a mode of illumination which I now presume
was electricity, but neither my father nor myself were sufficiently
skilled in mechanics to understand whence came the power to operate the
ship, or to maintain the soft beautiful lights that answered the same
purpose of our present methods of lighting the streets of our cities,
our houses and places of business.

It must be remembered, the time of which I write was the autumn of 1829,
and we of the "outside" surface of the earth knew nothing then, so to
speak, of electricity.

The electrically surcharged condition of the air was a constant
vitalizer. I never felt better in my life than during the two years my
father and I sojourned on the inside of the earth.

To resume my narrative of events; The ship on which we were sailing came
to a stop two days after we had been taken on board. My father said as
nearly as he could judge, we were directly under Stockholm or London.
The city we had reached was called "Jehu," signifying a seaport town.
The houses were large and beautifully constructed, and quite uniform in
appearance, yet without sameness. The principal occupation of the people
appeared to be agriculture; the hillsides were covered with vineyards,
while the valleys were devoted to the growing of grain.

I never saw such a display of gold. It was everywhere. The door-casings
were inlaid and the tables were veneered with sheetings of gold. Domes
of the public buildings were of gold. It was used most generously in the
finishings of the great temples of music.

Vegetation grew in lavish exuberance, and fruit of all kinds possessed
the most delicate flavor. Clusters of grapes four and five feet in
length, each grape as large as an orange, and apples larger than a man's
head typified the wonderful growth of all things on the "inside" of the

The great redwood trees of California would be considered mere
underbrush compared with the giant forest trees extending for miles and
miles in all directions. In many directions along the foothills of the
mountains vast herds of cattle were seen during the last day of our
travel on the river.

We heard much of a city called "Eden," but were kept at "Jehu" for an
entire year. By the end of that time we had learned to speak fairly
well the language of this strange race of people. Our instructors, Jules
Galdea and his wife, exhibited a patience that was truly commendable.

One day an envoy from the Ruler at "Eden" came to see us, and for two
whole days my father and myself were put through a series of surprising
questions. They wished to know from whence we came, what sort of people
dwelt "without," what God we worshiped, our religious beliefs, the mode
of living in our strange land, and a thousand other things.

The compass which we had brought with us attracted especial attention.
My father and I commented between ourselves on the fact that the compass
still pointed north, although we now knew that we had sailed over the
curve or edge of the earth's aperture, and were far along southward
on the "inside" surface of the earth's crust, which, according to my
father's estimate and my own, is about three hundred miles in thickness
from the "inside" to the "outside" surface. Relatively speaking, it is
no thicker than an egg-shell, so that there is almost as much surface on
the "inside" as on the "outside" of the earth.

The great luminous cloud or ball of dull-red fire--fiery-red in the
mornings and evenings, and during the day giving off a beautiful white
light, "The Smoky God,"--is seemingly suspended in the center of the
great vacuum "within" the earth, and held to its place by the immutable
law of gravitation, or a repellant atmospheric force, as the case may
be. I refer to the known power that draws or repels with equal force in
all directions.

The base of this electrical cloud or central luminary, the seat of the
gods, is dark and non-transparent, save for innumerable small openings,
seemingly in the bottom of the great support or altar of the Deity, upon
which "The Smoky God" rests; and, the lights shining through these many
openings twinkle at night in all their splendor, and seem to be stars,
as natural as the stars we saw shining when in our home at Stockholm,
excepting that they appear larger. "The Smoky God," therefore, with each
daily revolution of the earth, appears to come up in the east and go
down in the west, the same as does our sun on the external surface. In
reality, the people "within" believe that "The Smoky God" is the throne
of their Jehovah, and is stationary. The effect of night and day is,
therefore, produced by the earth's daily rotation.

I have since discovered that the language of the people of the Inner
World is much like the Sanskrit.

After we had given an account of ourselves to the emissaries from the
central seat of government of the inner continent, and my father had, in
his crude way, drawn maps, at their request, of the "outside" surface of
the earth, showing the divisions of land and water, and giving the name
of each of the continents, large islands and the oceans, we were taken
overland to the city of "Eden," in a conveyance different from anything
we have in Europe or America. This vehicle was doubtless some electrical
contrivance. It was noiseless, and ran on a single iron rail in perfect
balance. The trip was made at a very high rate of speed. We were carried
up hills and down dales, across valleys and again along the sides of
steep mountains, without any apparent attempt having been made to level
the earth as we do for railroad tracks. The car seats were huge yet
comfortable affairs, and very high above the floor of the car. On the
top of each car were high geared fly wheels lying on their sides, which
were so automatically adjusted that, as the speed of the car increased,
the high speed of these fly wheels geometrically increased. Jules Galdea
explained to us that these revolving fan-like wheels on top of the cars
destroyed atmospheric pressure, or what is generally understood by
the term gravitation, and with this force thus destroyed or rendered
nugatory the car is as safe from falling to one side or the other from
the single rail track as if it were in a vacuum; the fly wheels in
their rapid revolutions destroying effectually the so-called power of
gravitation, or the force of atmospheric pressure or whatever potent
influence it may be that causes all unsupported things to fall downward
to the earth's surface or to the nearest point of resistance.

The surprise of my father and myself was indescribable when, amid the
regal magnificence of a spacious hall, we were finally brought before
the Great High Priest, ruler over all the land. He was richly robed,
and much taller than those about him, and could not have been less than
fourteen or fifteen feet in height. The immense room in which we were
received seemed finished in solid slabs of gold thickly studded with
jewels, of amazing brilliancy.

The city of "Eden" is located in what seems to be a beautiful valley,
yet, in fact, it is on the loftiest mountain plateau of the Inner
Continent, several thousand feet higher than any portion of the
surrounding country. It is the most beautiful place I have ever beheld
in all my travels. In this elevated garden all manner of fruits, vines,
shrubs, trees, and flowers grow in riotous profusion.

In this garden four rivers have their source in a mighty artesian
fountain. They divide and flow in four directions. This place is called
by the inhabitants the "navel of the earth," or the beginning, "the
cradle of the human race." The names of the rivers are the Euphrates,
the Pison, the Gihon, and the Hiddekel.(17)

(17 "And the Lord God planted a garden, and out of the ground made the
Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for
food."--The Book of Genesis.)

The unexpected awaited us in this palace of beauty, in the finding of
our little fishing-craft. It had been brought before the High Priest in
perfect shape, just as it had been taken from the waters that day when
it was loaded on board the ship by the people who discovered us on the
river more than a year before.

We were given an audience of over two hours with this great dignitary,
who seemed kindly disposed and considerate. He showed himself eagerly
interested, asking us numerous questions, and invariably regarding
things about which his emissaries had failed to inquire.

At the conclusion of the interview he inquired our pleasure, asking us
whether we wished to remain in his country or if we preferred to return
to the "outer" world, providing it were possible to make a successful
return trip, across the frozen belt barriers that encircle both the
northern and southern openings of the earth.

My father replied: "It would please me and my son to visit your country
and see your people, your colleges and palaces of music and art, your
great fields, your wonderful forests of timber; and after we have had
this pleasurable privilege, we should like to try to return to our home
on the 'outside' surface of the earth. This son is my only child, and my
good wife will be weary awaiting our return."

"I fear you can never return," replied the Chief High Priest, "because
the way is a most hazardous one. However, you shall visit the different
countries with Jules Galdea as your escort, and be accorded every
courtesy and kindness. Whenever you are ready to attempt a return
voyage, I assure you that your boat which is here on exhibition shall
be put in the waters of the river Hiddekel at its mouth, and we will bid
you Jehovah-speed."

Thus terminated our only interview with the High Priest or Ruler of the



WE learned that the males do not marry before they are from seventy-five
to one hundred years old, and that the age at which women enter wedlock
is only a little less, and that both men and women frequently live to
be from six to eight hundred years old, and in some instances much

(18 Josephus says: "God prolonged the life of the patriarchs that
preceded the deluge, both on account of their virtues and to give them
the opportunity of perfecting the sciences of geometry and astronomy,
which they had discovered; which they could not have done if they had
not lived 600 years, because it is only after the lapse of 600 years
that the great year is accomplished."--Flammarion, Astronomical Myths,
Paris p. 26.)

During the following year we visited many villages and towns, prominent
among them being the cities of Nigi, Delfi, Hectea, and my father was
called upon no less than a half-dozen times to go over the maps which
had been made from the rough sketches he had originally given of the
divisions of land and water on the "outside" surface of the earth.

I remember hearing my father remark that the giant race of people in the
land of "The Smoky God" had almost as accurate an idea of the geography
of the "outside" surface of the earth as had the average college
professor in Stockholm.

In our travels we came to a forest of gigantic trees, near the city of
Delfi. Had the Bible said there were trees towering over three hundred
feet in height, and more than thirty feet in diameter, growing in the
Garden of Eden, the Ingersolls, the Tom Paines and Voltaires would
doubtless have pronounced the statement a myth. Yet this is the
description of the California sequoia gigantea; but these California
giants pale into insignificance when compared with the forest Goliaths
found in the "within" continent, where abound mighty trees from eight
hundred to one thousand feet in height, and from one hundred to one
hundred and twenty feet in diameter; countless in numbers and forming
forests extending hundreds of miles back from the sea.

The people are exceedingly musical, and learned to a remarkable degree
in their arts and sciences, especially geometry and astronomy. Their
cities are equipped with vast palaces of music, where not infrequently
as many as twenty-five thousand lusty voices of this giant race swell
forth in mighty choruses of the most sublime symphonies.

The children are not supposed to attend institutions of learning before
they are twenty years old. Then their school life begins and continues
for thirty years, ten of which are uniformly devoted by both sexes to
the study of music.

Their principal vocations are architecture, agriculture, horticulture,
the raising of vast herds of cattle, and the building of conveyances
peculiar to that country, for travel on land and water. By some device
which I cannot explain, they hold communion with one another between the
most distant parts of their country, on air currents.

All buildings are erected with special regard to strength, durability,
beauty and symmetry, and with a style of architecture vastly more
attractive to the eye than any I have ever observed elsewhere.

About three-fourths of the "inner" surface of the earth is land and
about one-fourth water. There are numerous rivers of tremendous size,
some flowing in a northerly direction and others southerly. Some of
these rivers are thirty miles in width, and it is out of these vast
waterways, at the extreme northern and southern parts of the "inside"
surface of the earth, in regions where low temperatures are experienced,
that fresh-water icebergs are formed. They are then pushed out to sea
like huge tongues of ice, by the abnormal freshets of turbulent waters
that, twice every year, sweep everything before them.

We saw innumerable specimens of bird-life no larger than those
encountered in the forests of Europe or America. It is well known that
during the last few years whole species of birds have quit the earth. A
writer in a recent article on this subject says:(19)

(19 "Almost every year sees the final extinction of one or more bird
species. Out of fourteen varieties of birds found a century since on a
single island--the West Indian island of St. Thomas--eight have now to
be numbered among the missing.")

Is it not possible that these disappearing bird species quit their
habitation without, and find an asylum in the "within world"?

Whether inland among the mountains, or along the seashore, we found
bird life prolific. When they spread their great wings some of the
birds appeared to measure thirty feet from tip to tip. They are of great
variety and many colors. We were permitted to climb up on the edge of
a rock and examine a nest of eggs. There were five in the nest, each of
which was at least two feet in length and fifteen inches in diameter.

After we had been in the city of Hectea about a week, Professor Galdea
took us to an inlet, where we saw thousands of tortoises along the sandy
shore. I hesitate to state the size of these great creatures. They were
from twenty-five to thirty feet in length, from fifteen to twenty feet
in width and fully seven feet in height. When one of them projected its
head it had the appearance of some hideous sea monster.

The strange conditions "within" are favorable not only for vast
meadows of luxuriant grasses, forests of giant trees, and all manner of
vegetable life, but wonderful animal life as well.

One day we saw a great herd of elephants. There must have been five
hundred of these thunder-throated monsters, with their restlessly waving
trunks. They were tearing huge boughs from the trees and trampling
smaller growth into dust like so much hazel-brush. They would average
over 100 feet in length and from 75 to 85 in height.

It seemed, as I gazed upon this wonderful herd of giant elephants, that
I was again living in the public library at Stockholm, where I had spent
much time studying the wonders of the Miocene age. I was filled with
mute astonishment, and my father was speechless with awe. He held my arm
with a protecting grip, as if fearful harm would overtake us. We were
two atoms in this great forest, and, fortunately, unobserved by this
vast herd of elephants as they drifted on and away, following a leader
as does a herd of sheep. They browsed from growing herbage which they
encountered as they traveled, and now and again shook the firmament with
their deep bellowing.(20)

(20 "Moreover, there were a great number of elephants in the island: and
there was provision for animals of every kind. Also whatever fragrant
things there are in the earth, whether roots or herbage, or woods,
or distilling drops of flowers or fruits, grew and thrived in that
land."--The Cratylus of Plato.)

There is a hazy mist that goes up from the land each evening, and it
invariably rains once every twenty-four hours. This great moisture and
the invigorating electrical light and warmth account perhaps for the
luxuriant vegetation, while the highly charged electrical air and the
evenness of climatic conditions may have much to do with the giant
growth and longevity of all animal life.

In places the level valleys stretched away for many miles in every
direction. "The Smoky God," in its clear white light, looked calmly
down. There was an intoxication in the electrically surcharged air that
fanned the cheek as softly as a vanishing whisper. Nature chanted a
lullaby in the faint murmur of winds whose breath was sweet with the
fragrance of bud and blossom.

After having spent considerably more than a year in visiting several of
the many cities of the "within" world and a great deal of intervening
country, and more than two years had passed from the time we had been
picked up by the great excursion ship on the river, we decided to
cast our fortunes once more upon the sea, and endeavor to regain the
"outside" surface of the earth.

We made known our wishes, and they were reluctantly but promptly
followed. Our hosts gave my father, at his request, various maps showing
the entire "inside" surface of the earth, its cities, oceans, seas,
rivers, gulfs and bays. They also generously offered to give us all the
bags of gold nuggets--some of them as large as a goose's egg--that we
were willing to attempt to take with us in our little fishing-boat.

In due time we returned to Jehu, at which place we spent one month in
fixing up and overhauling our little fishing sloop. After all was in
readiness, the same ship "Naz" that originally discovered us, took us on
board and sailed to the mouth of the river Hiddekel.

After our giant brothers had launched our little craft for us, they were
most cordially regretful at parting, and evinced much solicitude for our
safety. My father swore by the Gods Odin and Thor that he would surely
return again within a year or two and pay them another visit. And thus
we bade them adieu. We made ready and hoisted our sail, but there was
little breeze. We were becalmed within an hour after our giant friends
had left us and started on their return trip.

The winds were constantly blowing south, that is, they were blowing from
the northern opening of the earth toward that which we knew to be south,
but which, according to our compass's pointing finger, was directly

For three days we tried to sail, and to beat against the wind, but to no
avail. Whereupon my father said: "My son, to return by the same route as
we came in is impossible at this time of year. I wonder why we did not
think of this before. We have been here almost two and a half years;
therefore, this is the season when the sun is beginning to shine in
at the southern opening of the earth. The long cold night is on in the
Spitzbergen country."

"What shall we do?" I inquired.

"There is only one thing we can do," my father replied, "and that is to
go south." Accordingly, he turned the craft about, gave it full reef,
and started by the compass north but, in fact, directly south. The wind
was strong, and we seemed to have struck a current that was running with
remarkable swiftness in the same direction.

In just forty days we arrived at Delfi, a city we had visited in company
with our guides Jules Galdea and his wife, near the mouth of the
Gihon river. Here we stopped for two days, and were most hospitably
entertained by the same people who had welcomed us on our former visit.
We laid in some additional provisions and again set sail, following the
needle due north.

On our outward trip we came through a narrow channel which appeared to
be a separating body of water between two considerable bodies of land.
There was a beautiful beach to our right, and we decided to reconnoiter.
Casting anchor, we waded ashore to rest up for a day before continuing
the outward hazardous undertaking. We built a fire and threw on some
sticks of dry driftwood. While my father was walking along the shore, I
prepared a tempting repast from supplies we had provided.

There was a mild, luminous light which my father said resulted from the
sun shining in from the south aperture of the earth. That night we slept
soundly, and awakened the next morning as refreshed as if we had been in
our own beds at Stockholm.

After breakfast we started out on an inland tour of discovery, but had
not gone far when we sighted some birds which we recognized at once as
belonging to the penguin family.

They are flightless birds, but excellent swimmers and tremendous in
size, with white breast, short wings, black head, and long peaked bills.
They stand fully nine feet high. They looked at us with little surprise,
and presently waddled, rather than walked, toward the water, and swam
away in a northerly direction.(21)

(21 "The nights are never so dark at the Poles as in other regions, for
the moon and stars seem to possess twice as much light and effulgence.
In addition, there is a continuous light, the varied shades and play
of which are amongst the strangest phenomena of nature."--Rambrosson's

The events that occurred during the following hundred or more days
beggar description. We were on an open and iceless sea. The month we
reckoned to be November or December, and we knew the so-called South
Pole was turned toward the sun. Therefore, when passing out and away
from the internal electrical light of "The Smoky God" and its genial
warmth, we would be met by the light and warmth of the sun, shining in
through the south opening of the earth. We were not mistaken.(22)

(22 "The fact that gives the phenomenon of the polar aurora its greatest
importance is that the earth becomes self-luminous; that, besides the
light which as a planet is received from the central body, it shows
a capability of sustaining a luminous process proper to

There were times when our little craft, driven by wind that was
continuous and persistent, shot through the waters like an arrow.
Indeed, had we encountered a hidden rock or obstacle, our little vessel
would have been crushed into kindling-wood.

At last we were conscious that the atmosphere was growing decidedly
colder, and, a few days later, icebergs were sighted far to the left. My
father argued, and correctly, that the winds which filled our sails came
from the warm climate "within." The time of the year was certainly most
auspicious for us to make our dash for the "outside" world and attempt
to scud our fishing sloop through open channels of the frozen zone which
surrounds the polar regions.

We were soon amid the ice-packs, and how our little craft got through.
the narrow channels and escaped being crushed I know not. The compass
behaved in the same drunken and unreliable fashion in passing over
the southern curve or edge of the earth's shell as it had done on our
inbound trip at the northern entrance. It gyrated, dipped and seemed
like a thing possessed.(23)

(23 Captain Sabine, on page 105 in "Voyages in the Arctic Regions,"
says: "The geographical determination of the direction and intensity of
the magnetic forces at different points of the earth's surface has
been regarded as an object worthy of especial research. To examine in
different parts of the globe, the declination, inclination and intensity
of the magnetic force, and their periodical and secular variations, and
mutual relations and dependencies could be duly investigated only in
fixed magnetical observatories.")

One day as I was lazily looking over the sloop's side into the clear
waters, my father shouted: "Breakers ahead!" Looking up, I saw through
a lifting mist a white object that towered several hundred feet high,
completely shutting off our advance. We lowered sail immediately,
and none too soon. In a moment we found ourselves wedged between two
monstrous icebergs. Each was crowding and grinding against its
fellow mountain of ice. They were like two gods of war contending for
supremacy. We were greatly alarmed. Indeed, we were between the lines
of a battle royal; the sonorous thunder of the grinding ice was like the
continued volleys of artillery. Blocks of ice larger than a house were
frequently lifted up a hundred feet by the mighty force of lateral
pressure; they would shudder and rock to and fro for a few seconds, then
come crashing down with a deafening roar, and disappear in the foaming
waters. Thus, for more than two hours, the contest of the icy giants

It seemed as if the end had come. The ice pressure was terrific, and
while we were not caught in the dangerous part of the jam, and were safe
for the time being, yet the heaving and rending of tons of ice as it
fell splashing here and there into the watery depths filled us with
shaking fear.

Finally, to our great joy, the grinding of the ice ceased, and within a
few hours the great mass slowly divided, and, as if an act of Providence
had been performed, right before us lay an open channel. Should we
venture with our little craft into this opening? If the pressure came
on again, our little sloop as well as ourselves would be crushed into
nothingness. We decided to take the chance, and, accordingly, hoisted
our sail to a favoring breeze, and soon started out like a race-horse,
running the gauntlet of this unknown narrow channel of open water.


FOR the next forty-five days our time was employed in dodging icebergs
and hunting channels; indeed, had we not been favored with a strong
south wind and a small boat, I doubt if this story could have ever been
given to the world.

At last, there came a morning when my father said: "My son, I think we
are to see home. We are almost through the ice. See! the open water lies
before us."

However, there were a few icebergs that had floated far northward into
the open water still ahead of us on either side, stretching away for
many miles. Directly in front of us, and by the compass, which had now
righted itself, due north, there was an open sea.

"What a wonderful story we have to tell to the people of Stockholm,"
continued my father, while a look of pardonable elation lighted up his
honest face. "And think of the gold nuggets stowed away in the hold!"

I spoke kind words of praise to my father, not alone for his fortitude
and endurance, but also for his courageous daring as a discoverer, and
for having made the voyage that now promised a successful end. I was
grateful, too, that he had gathered the wealth of gold we were carrying

While congratulating ourselves on the goodly supply of provisions and
water we still had on hand, and on the dangers we had escaped, we were
startled by hearing a most terrific explosion, caused by the tearing
apart of a huge mountain of ice. It was a deafening roar like the firing
of a thousand cannon. We were sailing at the time with great speed, and
happened to be near a monstrous iceberg which to all appearances was as
immovable as a rockbound island. It seemed, however, that the iceberg
had split and was breaking apart, whereupon the balance of the monster
along which we were sailing was destroyed, and it began dipping from
us. My father quickly anticipated the danger before I realized its awful
possibilities. The iceberg extended down into the water many hundreds
of feet, and, as it tipped over, the portion coming up out of the water
caught our fishing-craft like a lever on a fulcrum, and threw it into
the air as if it had been a foot-ball.

Our boat fell back on the iceberg, that by this time had changed the
side next to us for the top. My father was still in the boat, having
become entangled in the rigging, while I was thrown some twenty feet

I quickly scrambled to my feet and shouted to my father, who answered:
"All is well." Just then a realization dawned upon me. Horror upon
horror! The blood froze in my veins. The iceberg was still in motion,
and its great weight and force in toppling over would cause it to
submerge temporarily. I fully realized what a sucking maelstrom it would
produce amid the worlds of water on every side. They would rush into the
depression in all their fury, like white-fanged wolves eager for human

In this supreme moment of mental anguish, I remember glancing at our
boat, which was lying on its side, and wondering if it could possibly
right itself, and if my father could escape. Was this the end of our
struggles and adventures? Was this death? All these questions flashed
through my mind in the fraction of a second, and a moment later I was
engaged in a life and death struggle. The ponderous monolith of ice sank
below the surface, and the frigid waters gurgled around me in frenzied
anger. I was in a saucer, with the waters pouring in on every side. A
moment more and I lost consciousness.

When I partially recovered my senses, and roused from the swoon of a
half-drowned man, I found myself wet, stiff, and almost frozen, lying on
the iceberg. But there was no sign of my father or of our little fishing
sloop. The monster berg had recovered itself, and, with its new balance,
lifted its head perhaps fifty feet above the waves. The top of this
island of ice was a plateau perhaps half an acre in extent.

I loved my father well, and was grief-stricken at the awfulness of his
death. I railed at fate, that I, too, had not been permitted to sleep
with him in the depths of the ocean. Finally, I climbed to my feet and
looked about me. The purple-domed sky above, the shoreless green ocean
beneath, and only an occasional iceberg discernible! My heart sank in
hopeless despair. I cautiously picked my way across the berg toward the
other side, hoping that our fishing craft had righted itself.

Dared I think it possible that my father still lived? It was but a ray
of hope that flamed up in my heart. But the anticipation warmed my blood
in my veins and started it rushing like some rare stimulant through
every fiber of my body.

I crept close to the precipitous side of the iceberg, and peered far
down, hoping, still hoping. Then I made a circle of the berg, scanning
every foot of the way, and thus I kept going around and around. One part
of my brain was certainly becoming maniacal, while the other part, I
believe, and do to this day, was perfectly rational.

I was conscious of having made the circuit a dozen times, and while one
part of my intelligence knew, in all reason, there was not a vestige of
hope, yet some strange fascinating aberration bewitched and compelled
me still to beguile myself with expectation. The other part of my brain
seemed to tell me that while there was no possibility of my father being
alive, yet, if I quit making the circuitous pilgrimage, if I paused for
a single moment, it would be acknowledgment of defeat, and, should I do
this, I felt that I should go mad. Thus, hour after hour I walked
around and around, afraid to stop and rest, yet physically powerless
to continue much longer. Oh! horror of horrors! to be cast away in this
wide expanse of waters without food or drink, and only a treacherous
iceberg for an abiding place. My heart sank within me, and all semblance
of hope was fading into black despair.

Then the hand of the Deliverer was extended, and the death-like
stillness of a solitude rapidly becoming unbearable was suddenly broken
by the firing of a signal-gun. I looked up in startled amazement, when,
I saw, less than a half-mile away, a whaling-vessel bearing down toward
me with her sail full set.

Evidently my continued activity on the iceberg had attracted their
attention. On drawing near, they put out a boat, and, descending
cautiously to the water's edge, I was rescued, and a little later lifted
on board the whaling-ship.

I found it was a Scotch whaler, "The Arlington." She had cleared from
Dundee in September, and started immediately for the Antarctic, in
search of whales. The captain, Angus MacPherson, seemed kindly disposed,
but in matters of discipline, as I soon learned, possessed of an iron
will. When I attempted to tell him that I had come from the "inside" of
the earth, the captain and mate looked at each other, shook their heads,
and insisted on my being put in a bunk under strict surveillance of the
ship's physician.

I was very weak for want of food, and had not slept for many hours.
However, after a few days' rest, I got up one morning and dressed myself
without asking permission of the physician or anyone else, and told them
that I was as sane as anyone.

The captain sent for me and again questioned me concerning where I
had come from, and how I came to be alone on an iceberg in the far off
Antarctic Ocean. I replied that I had just come from the "inside" of the
earth, and proceeded to tell him how my father and myself had gone in
by way of Spitzbergen, and come out by way of the South Pole country,
whereupon I was put in irons. I afterward heard the captain tell the
mate that I was as crazy as a March hare, and that I must remain in
confinement until I was rational enough to give a truthful account of

Finally, after much pleading and many promises, I was released from
irons. I then and there decided to invent some story that would satisfy
the captain, and never again refer to my trip to the land of "The Smoky
God," at least until I was safe among friends.

Within a fortnight I was permitted to go about and take my place as one
of the seamen. A little later the captain asked me for an explanation.
I told him that my experience had been so horrible that I was fearful of
my memory, and begged him to permit me to leave the question
unanswered until some time in the future. "I think you are recovering
considerably," he said, "but you are not sane yet by a good deal."
"Permit me to do such work as you may assign," I replied, "and if it
does not compensate you sufficiently, I will pay you immediately after I
reach Stockholm--to the last penny." Thus the matter rested.

On finally reaching Stockholm, as I have already related, I found that
my good mother had gone to her reward more than a year before. I
have also told how, later, the treachery of a relative landed me in a
madhouse, where I remained for twenty-eight years--seemingly unending
years--and, still later, after my release, how I returned to the life of
a fisherman, following it sedulously for twenty-seven years, then how
I came to America, and finally to Los Angeles, California. But all this
can be of little interest to the reader. Indeed, it seems to me the
climax of my wonderful travels and strange adventures was reached when
the Scotch sailing-vessel took me from an iceberg on the Antarctic


IN concluding this history of my adventures, I wish to state that I
firmly believe science is yet in its infancy concerning the cosmology
of the earth. There is so much that is unaccounted for by the world's
accepted knowledge of to-day, and will ever remain so until the land of
"The Smoky God" is known and recognized by our geographers.

It is the land from whence came the great logs of cedar that have been
found by explorers in open waters far over the northern edge of the
earth's crust, and also the bodies of mammoths whose bones are found in
vast beds on the Siberian coast.

Northern explorers have done much. Sir John Franklin, De Haven Grinnell,
Sir John Murray, Kane, Melville, Hall, Nansen, Schwatka, Greely, Peary,
Ross, Gerlache, Bernacchi, Andree, Amsden, Amundson and others have all
been striving to storm the frozen citadel of mystery.

I firmly believe that Andree and his two brave companions, Strindberg
and Fraenckell, who sailed away in the balloon "Oreon" from the
northwest coast of Spitzbergen on that Sunday afternoon of July
11, 1897, are now in the "within" world, and doubtless are being
entertained, as my father and myself were entertained by the
kind-hearted giant race inhabiting the inner Atlantic Continent.

Having, in my humble way, devoted years to these problems, I am well
acquainted with the accepted definitions of gravity, as well as the
cause of the magnetic needle's attraction, and I am prepared to say that
it is my firm belief that the magnetic needle is influenced solely by
electric currents which completely envelop the earth like a garment,
and that these electric currents in an endless circuit pass out of the
southern end of the earth's cylindrical opening, diffusing and spreading
themselves over all the "outside" surface, and rushing madly on in their
course toward the North Pole. And while these currents seemingly dash
off into space at the earth's curve or edge, yet they drop again to the
"inside" surface and continue their way southward along the inside of
the earth's crust, toward the opening of the so-called South Pole.(24)

(24 "Mr. Lemstrom concluded that an electric discharge which could only
be seen by means of the spectroscope was taking place on the surface of
the ground all around him, and that from a distance it would appear as
a faint display of Aurora, the phenomena of pale and flaming light which
is some times seen on the top of the Spitzbergen Mountains."--The Arctic
Manual, page 739.)

As to gravity, no one knows what it is, because it has not been
determined whether it is atmospheric pressure that causes the apple to
fall, or whether, 150 miles below the surface of the earth, supposedly
one-half way through the earth's crust, there exists some powerful
loadstone attraction that draws it. Therefore, whether the apple, when
it leaves the limb of the tree, is drawn or impelled downward to the
nearest point of resistance, is unknown to the students of physics.

Sir James Ross claimed to have discovered the magnetic pole at about
seventy-four degrees latitude. This is wrong--the magnetic pole is
exactly one-half the distance through the earth's crust. Thus, if the
earth's crust is three hundred miles in thickness, which is the distance
I estimate it to be, then the magnetic pole is undoubtedly one hundred
and fifty miles below the surface of the earth, it matters not where the
test is made. And at this particular point one hundred and fifty miles
below the surface, gravity ceases, becomes neutralized; and when we pass
beyond that point on toward the "inside" surface of the earth, a reverse
attraction geometrically increases in power, until the other one hundred
and fifty miles of distance is traversed, which would bring us out on
the "inside" of the earth.

Thus, if a hole were bored down through the earth's crust at London,
Paris, New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles, a distance of three hundred
miles, it would connect the two surfaces. While the inertia and momentum
of a weight dropped in from the "outside" surface would carry it far
past the magnetic center, yet, before reaching the "inside" surface
of the earth it would gradually diminish in speed, after passing the
halfway point, finally pause and immediately fall back toward the
"outside" surface, and continue thus to oscillate, like the swinging of
a pendulum with the power removed, until it would finally rest at
the magnetic center, or at that particular point exactly one-half the
distance between the "outside" surface and the "inside" surface of the

The gyration of the earth in its daily act of whirling around in its
spiral rotation--at a rate greater than one thousand miles every
hour, or about seventeen miles per second--makes of it a vast
electro-generating body, a huge machine, a mighty prototype of the
puny-man-made dynamo, which, at best, is but a feeble imitation of
nature's original.

The valleys of this inner Atlantis Continent, bordering the upper waters
of the farthest north are in season covered with the most magnificent
and luxuriant flowers. Not hundreds and thousands, but millions, of
acres, from which the pollen or blossoms are carried far away in almost
every direction by the earth's spiral gyrations and the agitation of the
wind resulting therefrom, and it is these blossoms or pollen from the
vast floral meadows "within" that produce the colored snows of the
Arctic regions that have so mystified the northern explorers.(25)

(25 Kane, vol. I, page 44, says: "We passed the 'crimson cliffs' of Sir
John Ross in the forenoon of August 5th. The patches of red snow from
which they derive their name could be seen clearly at the distance of
ten miles from the coast."

La Chambre, in an account of Andree's balloon expedition, on page
144, says: "On the isle of Amsterdam the snow is tinted with red for a
considerable distance, and the savants are collecting it to examine
it microscopically. It presents, in fact, certain peculiarities; it is
thought that it contains very small plants. Scoresby, the famous whaler,
had already remarked this.")

Beyond question, this new land "within" is the home, the cradle, of the
human race, and viewed from the standpoint of the discoveries made by
us, must of necessity have a most important bearing on all physical,
paleontological, archaeological, philological and mythological theories
of antiquity.

The same idea of going back to the land of mystery--to the very
beginning--to the origin of man--is found in Egyptian traditions of
the earlier terrestrial regions of the gods, heroes and men, from
the historical fragments of Manetho, fully verified by the historical
records taken from the more recent excavations of Pompeii as well as the
traditions of the North American Indians.

It is now one hour past midnight--the new year of 1908 is here, and this
is the third day thereof, and having at last finished the record of my
strange travels and adventures I wish given to the world, I am ready,
and even longing, for the peaceful rest which I am sure will follow
life's trials and vicissitudes. I am old in years, and ripe both with
adventures and sorrows, yet rich with the few friends I have cemented to
me in my struggles to lead a just and upright life. Like a story that
is well-nigh told, my life is ebbing away. The presentiment is strong
within me that I shall not live to see the rising of another sun. Thus
do I conclude my message.                   OLAF JANSEN.


I FOUND much difficulty in deciphering and editing the manuscripts of
Olaf Jansen. However, I have taken the liberty of reconstructing only
a very few expressions, and in doing this have in no way changed the
spirit or meaning. Otherwise, the original text has neither been added
to nor taken from.

It is impossible for me to express my opinion as to the value or
reliability of the wonderful statements made by Olaf Jansen. The
description here given of the strange lands and people visited by
him, location of cities, the names and directions of rivers, and other
information herein combined, conform in every way to the rough drawings
given into my custody by this ancient Norseman, which drawings together
with the manuscript it is my intention at some later date to give to the
Smithsonian Institution, to preserve for the benefit of those interested
in the mysteries of the "Farthest North"--the frozen circle of silence.
It is certain there are many things in Vedic literature, in "Josephus,"
the "Odyssey," the "Iliad," Terrien de Lacouperie's "Early History of
Chinese Civilization," Flammarion's "Astronomical Myths," Lenormant's
"Beginnings of History," Hesiod's "Theogony," Sir John de Maundeville's
writings, and Sayce's "Records of the Past," that, to say the least,
are strangely in harmony with the seemingly incredible text found in
the yellow manuscript of the old Norseman, Olaf Jansen, and now for the
first time given to the world.


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