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Mountaineering Collection

History Archive - Mountaineering Collection

The awakening of man's interest in mountains is chiefly due to Rousseau, though earlier writers, while approaching them as scientists, were also susceptible to their charm. This two-fold interest led Saussure to incite J. Balmat to find a way to the summit of Mont Blanc in 1786 and to accompany him thither in 1787. From that ascent alpinism is generally dated. In London in 1857 was formed the first Alpine Club to foster "the community of feeling amongst those who in the life of the High Alps have shared the same enjoyments, the same labours, and the same dangers." This idea, in a modified form, was taken up throughout Continental Europe and advocated with such enthusiasm that more than 100,000 persons of both sexes are now enrolled in the various alpine societies.

The largest of these are the German and Austrian (founded in 1862), about 55,000 members; Swiss (1863), 7000; Italian (1863), 54,000; and French (1874), 6000. In America three strong societies came into being: the Appalachian Mountain Club (q.v.) in Boston (1876), 1300 members; the Sierra Club (1892) in San Francisco, 800; and the 'Mazamas' (1894) in Portland, Ore. In these derivative societies eligibility is based upon a love of nature and of the mountain in particular rather than on alpinism proper, though most of them contain a contingent of expert climbers. The American Alpine Club (1902), with its home in Philadelphia, aims to revert to the original type, but adds to its field polar exploration and the study of glaciers.

Thus cultivated, Alpine climbing has attained almost to a science. Its principles are set forth in extended manuals, such as Dent's Mountaineering, Badminton Library (London, 1892). It has called into existence the class of professional guides—Swiss, Tyrolese, and Italian—whose skill far exceeds that of the best amateurs. Their aid, always expedient in tours above snow line, is indispensable in attacks upon giant peaks in distant lands, such as have frequently been made within recent times.

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List of Mountains


Consult: J. Forbes, Travels Through the Alps (Edinburgh, 1843); A. W. Moore, The Alps in 1864, from MS. copy (Edinburgh, 1902); J. Ball and E. S. Kennedy, Peaks, Passes, and Glaciers (London, 1859-62); G. Studer, Ueber Eis und Schnee (Bern, 1869-71); J. Tyndall, Mountaineering in 1861 (London, 1862); id., Hours of Exercise in the Alps (ib., 1871); L. Stephen, The Playground of Europe (ib., 1871); E. Whymper, Scrambles Among the Alps (ib., 1871): id., Travels in the Great Andes of the Equator (ib., 1892); C. T. Dent, Above the Snow-line (ib., 1885); Clarence King, Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada (Boston, 1886); W. M. Conway, Climbing in the Karaoram-Himalayas (London, 1894); id., The Alps from End to End (ib., 1895); id., The Bolivian Andes (New York, 1901); A. F. Mummery, My Climbs in the Alps and Caucasus (ib., 1895); E. A. Fitzgerald, Climbs in the New Zealand Alps (ib., 1896); id., The Highest Andes (ib., 1899); F. M. B. Workman, In the Ice World of the Himalaya (New York, 1898); C. E. Mathews, The Annals of Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn (London, 1898); F. De Filippi, The Ascent of Mount Saint Elias (London, 1900); W. D. Wilcox, Camping in the Canadian Rockies (New York, 1900); J. N. Collie, Climbing in the Himalayas and Other Mountains (Edinburgh, 1902). For recent American mountaineering, consult Appalachia, vols, i.-ix. (Boston, 1876-1902), and Sierra Club Bulletin, vols. i.-iii. (San Francisco, 1893-1903).

The New International Encyclopaedia (1905)

Available Books


Image Name
We encamp in a snow storm
Title Page
Church and Village of Gavarnie
The Langkofel and Plattkogel from the Seisser Alp
The Trugberg
Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau from Scherzligen, near Thun
Monte-Rosa von der Pedriolo Alpe [II]
Cirque of the Croda Malcora, near Cortina
The Dent du Midi from near Champery
Bern from the North-West
After the Sunset
The Gletscherhorn from the Pavilion, Hotel Cathrein, close to Concordia Hut
The Matterhorn from the Riffelberg
In the Val d'Aosta
The Castle and part of the Valley of Luz
Piz Albana and Piz Julier in Winter
Illustrated Title Page
Fluelen at end of Lake of Uri, South Arm of Lake of Lucerne
A Mountain Path, Grindelwald
Monte Viso from the Col de la Croix
The Velan from near Aosta
Storm coming up over Lake of Lucerne
View to the North
Haymakers in the Val Maggia
Marjelen Alp
The Castle of Zahringen-Kyburg, Thun
Village of Pierre-Fitte
Lucerne and Lake from the Drei Linden
At Meiringen
Cascade of L'Escoubous
Cascades & Village of Grip
Boden and Gorner
The Summit of the Weisse Frau
Sketch Map Showing the Course of the Glaciers of Snowden and It's Neighbourhood
The Blumlisalp from the Oeschinengrat
Pallanza - Evening
Front Cover
Marjelen See and Great Aletsch Glacier
Mont Blanc from above Finhaut
Locarno from the Banks of the Lake
The Cascade de Roget and the Pond de Salles
Back Cover
Vaarstige Dovre-Field
Nursyng from the Singaleelah Range
Monte-Rosa von der Pedriolo Alpe [I]
Morgenhorn and Wilde Frau from the Bundalp
Map of the Glaciers of the Ymesfield in Lat. 60', 40'
Title Page
Sasso di Pelmo from Monte Zucco
View of the Bernese Alps from the Gurten, near Bern
Bridge of Sia
Furggen Glacier Icefall
Lago di Cavloccio
View from the Bridge of Sia
Panorama from the Little Doldenhorn towards the East
Lago di Bitabergo
The Castle of Lourdes
Looking over Lucerne from the Drei Linden
Cascades and Circle of Gavarnie
Title Page
Das Hochgebirge von Grindelwald
Title Page
Piz Bernina and the Morteratsch Glacier
The Weisshorn from near St. Niklaus
The Castle of Chillon
Our camp ascending the snow fields
Bains de Loueche and Leuck Bad
The Jungfrau from the Kleiner Scheidegg
The Valley of Argeles
Weisshorn and Matterhorn from Fiescheralp
The Aiguilles Verte and Du Dru from near Chamouni
Priory of St Paul, the Pic du Midi in the Distance
Castello Pietra, Primiero
Maloja from the Road to Isola
View of the Trift Pass from the Gornergrat
Map of the Glaciers of the Oberland
The Bhootia Busti Village, Darjeeling
Fiescherhorn and Lower Grindelwald Glacier
The Aletschhorn
Pallanza - Sunset
Moonlight in the Val Formazzafrom the Tosa Falls
The Breitliorn from Schwarz See
Distant Mountains of the Pyrenees as seen from Villeneuve de Marsan
Title Page
Mont Blanc and Glacier du Géant from the Jardin
The Corpus Christi Procession to the Hofkirche of St. Leodegar
Asconia - on Lago Maggiore
Vitznau and Lake of Lucerne
The Pier at Seherzligen, Lake of Thun - Evening
General View of Rosengarten Gebirge from the Sasso di Damm, Fassa Thal
Title Page
The Plains of Nepal from Mt. Tongloo
Looking down the Aletsch Glacier from Concordia Hut


Map Name
Norway and its Glaciers - Map of Norway (1853)
The Dolomite Mountains - Geological Map of the District of Predazzo, St. Cassian and the Seisser Alp (1864)
Das Hochgebirge von Grindelwald - Karte des Hochgebirge von Grindelwald (1865)
The Dolomite Mountains - Map of the South Eastern Alps Showing the Routes Followed by the Authors (1864)
The Doldenhorn and Weisse Frau - Map of the Blumlisalp and Doldenhorn Group (1863)


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