(K. Brent Tomer),
WHILE mapping the Brazilian-Bolivian border in 1906, Percy Fawcett uncovered shards of pottery. Crawling on the jungle floor, he picked up these simple fragments with amazement; he saw in them signs of an intelligent civilisation that his contemporaries thought could not possibly exist in such a hostile environment. Those bits of bowl spawned a maniacal search for a city he code-named “Z” in the state of Mato Grosso, Brazil.
For almost 20 years after this initial discovery, Fawcett left his family to hack through the Amazon jungle—only the first world war interrupted his pursuit. In 1925, American newspapers agreed to fund another expedition in exchange for regular dispatches and photographs. Fawcett, then 58, his son Jack and one of Jack’s friends, submitted front-page material via native runners. But after a few months, communication had ceased. In January 1927 Fawcett was declared lost, presumed dead.
Many undertook expeditions of their own to find Fawcett and his team. In 1928, George Dyott, another British explorer, was sponsored by newspapers to scour the area. He failed to find Fawcett alive and, after tense…Continue reading