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eightieth parallel, he hesitated to enter Smith Sound, and coasted the northern shores of the great bay which has ever since borne his name, until he found the land trending to the south. He continued his southerly course to Cumberland Island, where, finding the health of his crew declining, he steered to the coast of Greenland, on the opposite side of Davis Strait, and anchored in one of the numerous natural harbours by which it is indented. There the use of a decoction of scurvy grass in beer restored the hardy mariners to health, and, in the pious words of the narrator of the voyage, “the Lord then sent a speedy and good passage homeward.”
RUSSIAN EXPLORATIONS-DESHNEFF'S DISCOVERY OF A PASSAGE INTO THE PACIFIC-DISCOVERY ON
THE LIKABOFF AND BEAR ISLANDS-SURVEY OF THE COAST OF SIBERIA-VOYAGES OF LIEU. TENANT LAPTEFF-BEHRING'S EXPEDITION_His SHIPWRECK AND DEATH-DISASTROUS VOYAGE OF SCHALA ROFF-SERGEANT ANDREJEFF'S JOURNEY ON THE ICE-LACHOFF'S EXPLORATIONS.
URING the remainder of the seventeenth century, and
the first forty years of the eighteenth, efforts to penetrate the ice-bound regions beyond the Arctic Circle were confined to the Russians, and were naturally made between longitudes 130° E. and 170° w.
Long before the period to which this narrative has been carried, Russian merchants, sailing through the Kara or Waygatz Strait, had explored the broad estuaries of the Obi and the Yennissei, and carried on a profitable trade with the Samoiedes in furs and the ivory tusks of the extinct mammoth. About the commencement of the seventeenth century, trading stations were established at the mouths of these and other rivers, and within the next forty years the rivers Lena, Yana, Indigirka, Alaseia, and Kolima were discovered by exploring parties of Cossacks, who heard of them from the natives of islands lying off the coast.
The earliest attempts to sail to eastward of the Kolima were made in 1646, and the two following years, with several small vessels, all of which were wrecked. To Deshneff, an officer of the Imperial Government, and not to Behring, belongs the honour of discovering that the Asiatic and American continents are not united, and sailing through the channel which divides them. He commenced his voyage in June 1648, but as the first incident which he mentions in his report to the Russian Government is his doubling “the great cape of the Tchuktches," it is uncertain whether he sailed from the Lena or the Kolima. He mentions no obstruction from ice; and, as he observes that the sea was not always so free from it as it was that year, it is probable that he encountered none. But, when he had followed the coast until he entered the strait which divides Asia from North America, his vessel was caught in a tempest, and tossed about until it was cast ashore some distance to the southward of the river Anadir, and became a wreck.
Deshneff's principal object had been the discovery of this river, of which reports had been received from the Tchuktches, the country which it waters abounding in sables, the fur of which has always been so much esteemed. Undismayed by the loss of his vessel, he immediately began searching for the Anadir ; and, after wandering about the dreary snow-clad country for ten weeks, he and his surviving followers reached its banks, near the point at which it flows into Onemen Bay. But no signs of human habitations were visible, and not a tree varied the monotony of the scene. He sent a party to explore the banks of the river, some of whom died of cold, hunger, and fatigue. The survivors returned, and a hut was built, in which they passed the winter, subsisting upon the deer and other animals which they shot or trapped. In the spring, they advanced up the river, and met with a Tchuktche tribe, called Anauli, most of whom they killed in a conflict arising out of Deshneff's demand of the tribute claimed by the Russian Government from all the wandering tribes of Northern Asia.
In the meantime, another exploring party, commanded by