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Don C. Sowers

Don C. Sowers

In 1909, Don Conger Sowers and Chester Garfield Fusion undertook a groundbreaking journey for the Department of Research in Terrestrial Magnetism of the Carnegie Institution of Washington. The primary purpose of the expedition was to make magnetic observations over regions of Central Asia for which there were as yet no magnetic data, and thus to secure the desired information for filling one of the blanks in the magnetic map of the world. Knowing the difference between magnetic north and true north was vital to travelers around the globe in the days before GPS aided navigation.  The expedition undertook also to collect seeds of economic value for the Department of Agriculture of the United States Government. Their journey took them overland from Peking, China, through the legendary Vale of Kashmir to Tibet, ending in Bombay, India. They were some of the first white men to cross these frontier territories, vast deserts and countless Himalayan passes. Don C. Sowers died at the age of 59, but is survived by his three children and eventually nine grandchildren.

Presented by David Wexler

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Baggage wagon, Honan province Beard Caravan Cook John
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Dark veil Don Sowers on pony Fording the Kalyan River, Akshua, Xinjiang Grinding wheat, Kanchow
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House Karakoram Pass Summit Kashgar bazaar Kiayii Kwan, Great Wall end
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Leh Kadakh Marching Mountain tribesman Mountains 1
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Mountains 2 Observers Old mill and fort On a yak
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On the trail On the trail 2 Palace Palace 2
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Palace entrance Peking Pillars Pipe
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Rickshaw Rocky road, Sanju to Karakoram Saser Pass Camp Sphinx
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Suchow, Kansu province Tihuafu to Kashgar Tihuafu, Xinjiang Turki children
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Turki children 2 Turki rabble, Turfan, Xinjiang Walls of Ansichow, Kansu province Yacks climbing, Sanju Pass
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