Fairchild Tropical Garden Expedition aboard the Cheng Ho 1939-1940
JANUARY 1940
 
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FEBRUARY 1940
 
 
 
 
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MARCH 1940
 
 
 
 
 
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APRIL 1940
 
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APR 1940
16

Sengkang to Masamba, Sulawesi, Indonesia

Written by Edward Beckwith on Tuesday, April 16, 1940

Heavy rain during the night. Hugo redressed two of my ulcers and thought they looked very serious, especially one which was painful. He made predictions about what was going to happen in the case of the one I am preserving without treatment as an experiment. He said his father had one in Brazil which reached a diameter of 9 inches. Incidentally he is getting another himself near the one which he though was getting well. My cold was better which I was more concerned about than the ulcers on account of a bad sore throat.

We were both considerably sun burned from yesterday and covered our faces with some of Hugo’s cream in preparation for today’s run. Hugo’s face is blazing red and he constantly asked me how it looks and whether it is any better. He seemed never to get to the end of the peeling stage, while mine worked differently when sufficiently pigmented.

I bought a very brilliant green iridescent sarong for 6 guilders.

We were ready to start at 8:30 but spent an hour at the market first. There so many natives (Bugis) there that it was difficult to get pictures. They followed us and crowded around whenever we stopped. I bought four sarongs at 2.50 and 3 guilders. Very brilliant and striking designs. We tried to buy three that were worn by natives, two women and one man, but they were unwilling to sell them although we offered more than they were worth. Possibly some superstition.

Market in Sengkang
Market in Sengkang, Sulawesi, Indonesia. Photographed by Edward Beckwith.
Market in Sengkang
Market in Sengkang. Photographed by Edward Beckwith.
Market in Sengkang
Hugo Curran in a crowd at Sengkang market. Photographed by Edward Beckwith.
We stopped twice. The first time Hugo went into the woods and came back with two vines, both with white flowers having a fragrant odor, one flower a little larger than the other and with fewer petals. He was chased by a caribao which made him return more quickly. He then followed a trail on the other side and returned with the large gourd which he had tried unsuccessfully to get the seeds of in Palu. He was not gone long as this time he was chased by some goats. I made photographs of the specimens in duplicate.

The second stop was for examination and photography of a small tree by the road with clusters of yellow blossoms. They were extremely beautiful and decorative. This required some color photographs besides black and white. During this stop a native passed wearing a sarong which Hugo said we had to have if possible, so with Wongso’s help he made the man a good offer. The native refused to sell it, confirming our idea that they have a strong feeling for some reason against selling something that they are wearing.

Thunbergia fragrans, collected along the road from Sengkang to Palopo
Thunbergia fragrans, collected by Hugo Curran along the road from Sengkang to Palopo, Sulawesi, Indonesia. Photographed by Edward Beckwith.
Jasminum specimen collected along the road from Sengkang to Palopo
Jasminum collected by Hugo Curran along the road from Sengkang to Palopo. Photographed by Edward Beckwith.
Pterocarpus along the road from Sengkang to Palopo
Hugo Curran and guide with a Pterocarpus tree. Photographed by Edward Beckwith along the road from Sengkang to Palopo.
We also stopped for lunch and to put more grease on our faces, which were getting more and more burned.

At Palopo we stopped at the market which was not especially interesting. I did buy 3 more sarongs, very brightly colored, for 2 guilders each. This makes a total of 10, all of which were hand woven and made in the locality in which they were bought.We saw one or two buildings which were characteristic of the Toraja country, and also passed quite an extensive rubber plantation. Most of the country was open, with no climbs, and while pretty, perhaps less interesting than that of yesterday.

Reached Masamba at 4 P.M., a distance of about 500 kilometers from Macassar.

Hugo called on the controlleur, Mr. Maurenbrecker who lived next door and got some information about the swamp country between here and the coast.

He also took a walk and made the acquaintance of a native family. He said the girl was good looking and thought it would be a good idea to take pictures of her in color wearing our collection of sarongs, one at a time of course. After thinking it over I decided against it on account of the prejudice there might be toward wearing a sarong which had already been on a native girl.

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