National Geographic : 1937 Dec
INSIDE CAPE HORN THE MORRISONS ARE THE GEOGRAPHIC'S FARTHEST SOUTH AMERICAN MEMBERS Isolated on Dawson Island in the Strait of Magellan, they "travel all over the world" through THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE. "Memories of their hospitality lingered with me through many lonely, perilous days at sea," writes the author, who was their guest on Christmas Day. Mary helps mother spin wool for rugs, stockings, shawls, and sweaters. Father has raised sheep here for a quarter of a century (Plate VII and page 750). The brown peaks of Jorjina and Basket Islands on our starboard stood sentinel to the sea passes that end here in the Pacific breakers. At several anchorages we scaled their bare granite summits and looked down on the gray Pacific beyond. When we entered Desolada Bay, the weather cleared after 30 days of rain. Beside us, as we sailed down the dawn track of the sun, deep, tortuous fjords in tersected the snow-capped, unconquered mountain ramparts of Tierra del Fuego. On Burnt Island in Desolada Bay we sighted Indians. It was the first inhabited hut, low, egg-shaped, and sagging with seal skins. Our Sailing Directions described the Alikulufs as treacherous and aggressive. We steered in cautiously. Two crudely hewn planked canoes were overturned on the beach. Smoke puffed from every crack of the shelter, from which emerged several ragged Indians resembling smoked hams. They gazed, rubbing their eyes and blinking in the light, mute to our pantomime salutations. "Hi, toots!" Pepper shouted. A BEGGAR IN ANY LANGUAGE One Indian walked awkwardly on un developed canoe-cramped legs to a canoe and paddled toward us, jabbering in a medley of tongues from which we sorted English, Spanish, and Italian words. "Matches for baby. Matches for baby," he begged. Four centuries in the track of European voyagers had made these bold beggars linguists.