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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
The Village of Soldimo, at the Entrance of the Val Maggia
Title Page
The Chateau of Henri Quatre at Pau
Panorama from the Little Doldenhorn towards the East
Piz Albana and Piz Julier in Winter
The Dent du Midi from near Champery
Entrance to Saint Sauveur
The Wetterhorn
Klosters with Kanarthorn and Weisshorn
Nursyng from the Singaleelah Range
Fiescherhorn and Lower Grindelwald Glacier
Muottas Muraigl
Village of Pierre-Fitte
Map of Norway
Lago di Bitabergo
Looking up Valley towards Zermatt from near Randa
Map Range of Mont Blanc
Bridge of Sia
Title Page
Grindelwald looking towards the Wengen Alp
Front Cover
The Grand Paradise from near Cogne
Bern from the North-West
Maloja from the Road to Isola
Priory of St Paul, the Pic du Midi in the Distance
Fluelen at end of Lake of Uri, South Arm of Lake of Lucerne
Doldenhorn - Group from Kandersteg
Haymakers in the Val Maggia
Cascade of L'Escoubous
The Jungfrau from the Glacier of Aletsch
The Dom and Weisshorn from the Aeggisch Horn
Kinchinjunga and Pundeem by Moonlight
Crevasses on the Mer de Grace
Illustrated Title Page
Monte-Rosa von der Pedriolo Alpe [I]
At Bignasco
Rafte Sund Lofodden
Vitznau and Lake of Lucerne
Junnoo from below Soubaboom
Boden and Gorner
Monte Viso from the South
Locarno from the Banks of the Lake
Monte-Rosa von der Pedriolo Alpe [II]
View to the North
The Valley of Argeles
View from the Chalet de Villard
Karte des Hochgebirge von Grindelwald
Title Page
The Bridge over the Gave at Betharem
Zmutt-Gletscher am Fuss des Matterhorns
Title Page
Mont Blanc and Glacier du Géant from the Jardin
Title Page
Val Fex
Back Cover
Piz Palu from the Diavolezza Hut
In a Garden at Locarno
Martinsloch and the Sgnes Pass from the South-East
The Pointe de Tenneverges from near Sixt
Map of Sikkim showing the Great Kinchinjunga Group
Pilatus and Lake of Lucerne from the Slopes of the Rigi
Erster Upsrung des Hinter Rheins
Bernese Alps from the Oldenhorn to the Wildstrubel
Cascades and Circle of Gavarnie
Sunrise on Cresta, Celerina, and Samaden
The Castle of Chillon
The Opening of the Val de Tignes
Deodunga, Mt. Everest - Sunrise
Asconia - on Lago Maggiore
Piz della Margna from Crestalta
Bath of La Ralliere, looking towards Cauterets
In the Val d'Aosta
The Breitliorn from Schwarz See
Map of the Blumlisalp and Doldenhorn Group
Illustrated Title Page
The Trugberg
In the Valley of Aosta
Lucerne and Lake from the Drei Linden
We encamp in a snow storm
The Severn Peaks of the Blumlisalp
The Glacier de Trient
Mountains and Glaciers of Baines
Pallanza - Sunset
View of the Trift Pass from the Gornergrat
The Bhootia Busti Village, Darjeeling
Back Cover
Locarno at Sunset, and North End of Lago Maggiore
The Doldenhorn from the Oeschinenalp
Lower Glacier and Grindelwald Church
Looking over Lucerne from the Drei Linden
The Julier Pass
In the Val d'Aosta
Front Cover
Monte Viso from the Col de la Croix
Francis Devouassoud
Village of Cauterets


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


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