National Geographic : 1963 Jan
edge. Its historic ventures have probed the ends of the earth, the depths of the sea, and the enormously far reaches of the sky (pages 10-16). Robert E. Peary reaches the North Pole. Richard E. Byrd lands at Little America. William Beebe dives in the bathysphere. Explorer II lifts men to the stratosphere. These are memories from the past, for all time to come. They are mem ories for you, as members of the larg est scientific and educational organi zation in the world. These are things your Society helped brave men do. But what of the present? To my of fice overlooking 16th Street in Wash ington come messages such as these: "Fossil manlike jawbone found... 12 to 14 million years old." "Two gold rattles, one wooden idol, skulls of children.... Still diving." "Rain and floods, roads closed, chim panzees moving inland." "Atlas of the planets going well. Mars pictures now complete." These cryptic reports might seem as odd and diverse as the world is wide -and they are! For they came from Kenya, Mexico, Tanganyika, and Ari zona to describe Society activities. Geography in Action "Of all the sciences," Joseph Conrad wrote in the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC of March, 1924, "geography finds its origin in action, and, what is more, in adventurous action." This year the Society's 3,300,000 members are sponsoring adventurous action on a scale broader then ever. As you read this, a team of 18 Amer icans supported by your Society pre pares to climb Mount Everest (page 42). Elsewhere, during the past year, your Society's flag has flown in the wilds of Brazil and New Guinea, where anthropologists record the cus toms of primitive tribes; in Yellow stone National Park, where natural ists track grizzly bears by miniature radio transmitters attached to plas tic collars; and in Jerusalem, where scholars trace crumbled remnants of walls built centuries before Christ. Undersea archeologists study relics lifted from ancient shipwrecks ly ing on the floor of the Mediterranean.