Around the World
on a Bicycle
By Thomas Stevens
Volume I. From San Francisco to Teheran
OVER THE SIERRAS NEVADAS, ................. 1
OVER THE DESERTS OF NEVADA,............... 21
THROUGH MORMON-LAND AND OVER THE ROCKIES, .46
FROM THE GREAT PLAINS TO THE ATLANTIC, ....70
FROM AMERICA TO THE GERMAN FRONTIER, ..... 91
GERMANY, AUSTRIA, AND HUNGARY, .........121
THROUGH SLAVONIA AND SERVIA, .............153
BULGARIA, ROUMELIA, AND INTO TURKEY,..... 184
THROUGH EUROPEAN TURKEY,..................215
THE START THROUGH ASIA,...................251
ON THROUGH ASIA,..........................263
THROUGH THE ANGORA GOAT COUNTRY,..........279
BEY BAZAAR, ANGORA, AND EASTWARD,.........307
ACROSS THE KIZIL IRMAK RIVER TO YUZGAT,...338
FROM THE KOORDISH CAMP TO YUZGAT,.........351
THROUGH THE SIVAS VILAYET INTO ARMENIA,...368
THROUGH ERZINGAN AND ERZEROUM,............397
MOUNT ARARAT AND KOORDISTAN,..............426
PERSIA AND THE TABREEZ CARAVAN TRAIL,.....455
TABREEZ TO TEHERAN,.......................486
Click here for the full, text-only version of Volume I.
This was scanned from an original edition, copyright 1887,
547 pages. It is as close as I could come in ASCII to the printed text.
Scanning time: 15 hours
OCR time: 20+ hours
Proof #1: 25 hours
Proof #2: ? (A slow reading by a friend)
The numerous italics have been unfortunately omitted, and the conjoined '‘' have been changed to 'ae'; as well as others, similarly. I have left the spelling, punctuation, capitalization as close as possible to the printed text, including that of titles and headings. The issue of end-of-line hyphenation was difficult, as normal usage in the 1880's often hyphenated words which have since been concatenated.
Stevens also used phonetic spelling and italics for much of the unfamiliar language or dialects that he heard; a great deal of foreign words and phrases are also included and always italicized. A word which might seem mis-spelled, such as 'yaort', was originally in italics and was the 1886 spelling of 'yogurt'. Many of the names of places and peoples have long since changed and so are no longer easily referenced.
The book is written in the common English of a San Francisco journalist of the era and so is filled with contemporaneous idioms and prejudices, as well as his own wry wit.
One of the more unfortunate issues is the omission of the over 100 illustrations of the original edition. I also elected to omit the informative captions. I hope to make an HTML edition available at http://rjs.org/gutenberg/ which will include them.
If you find any scanning errors, out and out typos, punctuation errors, or if you disagree with my formatting choices please feel free to email me those errors: firstname.lastname@example.org The space between the double quotes and the quoted text is sometimes omitted, usually included. This is an artifact of the OCR program interpreting the small space in the original print, and if someone wants to remove the space from all of the quotes, I would be glad to see it.
I have written a wxPython program to assist in converting raw OCR text to the project's formatting, as well as general punctuation and spelling. http://rjs.org/gutenberg/OCR2Gutenberg/ Code contributions/modifications are most welcome; it is a bit of a hack, but it reduced the proof time needed by more than what it took to write 778 lines of code.
Shakespeare says, in All's Well that Ends Well, that "a good traveller is something at the latter end of a dinner;" and I never was more struck with the truth of this than when I heard Mr. Thomas Stevens, after the dinner given in his honor by the Massachusetts Bicycle Club, make a brief, off-hand report of his adventures. He seemed like Jules Verne, telling his own wonderful performances, or like a contemporary Sinbad the Sailor. We found that modern mechanical invention, instead of disenchanting the universe, had really afforded the means of exploring its marvels the more surely. Instead of going round the world with a rifle, for the purpose of killing something, - or with a bundle of tracts, in order to convert somebody, - this bold youth simply went round the globe to see the people who were on it; and since he always had something to show them as interesting as anything that they could show him, he made his way among all nations.
What he had to show them was not merely a man perched on a lofty wheel, as if riding on a soap-bubble; but he was also a perpetual object-lesson in what Holmes calls "genuine, solid old Teutonic pluck." When the soldier rides into danger he has comrades by his side, his country's cause to defend, his uniform to vindicate, and the bugle to cheer him on; but this solitary rider had neither military station, nor an oath of allegiance, nor comrades, nor bugle; and he went among men of unknown languages, alien habits and hostile faith with only his own tact and courage to help him through. They proved sufficient, for he returned alive.
I have only read specimen chapters of this book, but find in them the same simple and manly quality which attracted us all when Mr. Stevens told his story in person. It is pleasant to know that while peace reigns in America, a young man can always find an opportunity to take his life in his hand and originate some exploit as good as those of the much-wandering Ulysses. In the German story "Titan," Jean Paul describes a manly youth who "longed for an adventure for his idle bravery;" and it is pleasant to read the narrative of one who has quietly gone to work, in an honest way, to satisfy this longing.
THOMAS WENTWORTH HIGGINSON.
CAMBRIDGE, MASS., April 10, 1887.
Text, code and images © Ray Schumacher 2005