Puslapio vaizdai

and well suited as a permanent habitation of the white race. All that portion of Brazil below Rio de Janeiro is of comparatively recent settlement. During the colonial period Portuguese energy was directed almost exclusively to the semi-tropical and tropical regions of the north, to Bahia and Pernambuco, where rich tobacco and sugar plantations could be worked with slave labor; to the gold and diamond lands of the interior, with their special attractions to impatient fortune-hunters. The splendid pasture-lands of the temperate zone were scorned by these eager adventurers; maps printed as late as 1865 bear across these southern provinces the words, "Unknown and inhabited by wild Indians."

The Germans, to be sure, had begun to appear before that. Barely had the exiled Emperor of Portugal settled down to rule his immense overseas domain in 1808, when he set about filling in its waste spaces by instituting a policy of inviting immigration which is to this day continued by the states themselves. For twenty-five years Teutonic settlers were established at many different points, chiefly in the two southernmost states. But in 1859 the German Government forbade emigration to Brazil. The original settlers are therefore long since dead, and the present inhabitants are of the third or fourth generation, born in Brazil and with little more than a traditional feeling for the fatherland. Yet this has remained much stronger and more general than in the United States, thanks both to segregation and to the weakness of the Brazilian environment. Not until 1896 was the German edict against emigration to Brazil removed, and by that time the southern states had attracted new settlers, particu

larly from Italy. The state of São Paulo, for instance, has built up her great coffee industry and her factory production chiefly on Italian immigration.

§ 5

The lines of southern Brazil could scarcely be made a real railroad in the American sense without complete rebuilding, for they squirm and twist and wind their way in constant agony over the lightly rolling country, seeking always the higher levels and never by any chance running for a yard straight forward. One of the employees asserted that when the line was surveyed, if a cow got in their way, the surveyors, rather than exert themselves to go and drive her off, moved the sextant. Less facetious officials explained that the engines were so weak that anything steeper than a one per cent. grade was avoided in the building. We wound so much that we had frequent views of the engineer and the fireman at their playful games in the cab; we darted from one side to the other so often that it would have been easy to suppose that they were in terror of the many wide-horned cattle scattered over the rolling landscape. The brakes were frequently called upon to keep us from running over the time-table; stations or crossings were so rare that the whistle was uncomfortably startling; at the rare places we did officially stop an extended argument usually arose between the station-master in his red cap and the trainmen in their blue ones as to when it would be fitting and advisable to push onward.

Beyond the large town of Passo Fundo appeared, first singly, then in roomy clusters, the splendid pinheiro,

the slender, yet sturdy, Brazilian pinetree, erect and entirely free from branches to the very top, from which these suddenly spread thickly out at right angles to the trunk in the form of a Japanese parasol. The pinheiro makes excellent lumber, being lighter, yet stronger, than our Northern pine; but above all it greatly beautifies the landscape. The rare small clumps of it in the hollows became more and more numerous until, at Erechim, we found ourselves in an entire forest of parasol pines, with an atmosphere strikingly like our Northern lumber woods.

I descended at Erebango to spend the Fourth with a fellow-countryman in charge of the construction of a branch railway line out through the "Colonia Quatro Irmãos." We boarded a hand-car pumped by four lusty Galicians, and struck out in company with the Jewish manager of the colony. Russian and Polish Jews, still in the winter garb in which they had crossed the Atlantic, were everywhere. Upon arrival, to every Jew was given a piece of land and some stock, the latter to be paid for some day, after he got his start. We pumped our way for an hour through the semi-tropical forest, here and there broken by clearings scattered with light-colored wooden houses. The unpainted little dwellings were tolerably clean, with cheap lace curtains, and some good school-houses were being built. But though some of them had been here for months, there was little evidence of any work being done by the colonists themselves. One got the impression that they preferred to live on the charity of the association and its wealthy sponsors rather than to indulge in physical exertion under the semi-tropical sun,

and one wondered if it was possible to make a farmer of the Jew; whether the colonists would not have been more contented in selling things to one another.

$ 6

The tri-weekly train picked me up two days later. two days later. Hour after hour we rambled on in a leisurely tropical fashion. The water-tanks were not at the stations, but wherever streams gave a supply, thereby increasing the number of stops. At Marcellino Ramos we left the enormous "gaucho state" behind, and struck off across the narrow one of Santa Catharina, through which we followed the placid Rio do Peixe, or Fish River, for a hundred and sixty-five miles, passing several waterfalls. The wooded serra of Santa Catharina rose slightly into the sky, and on all sides the world was thickly clothed with matta, as jungle is called in Brazil, with here and there small clearings scattered with clusters of crude new shanties.

I was conscious of being frequently stalled on some slight grade during the night, yet when I finally awoke, in a cold, clear sunrise, we had crossed the River Iguassú into the state of Paraná, with an inter-tropical vegetation and many serrarias, or sawmills. Nearly all the morning we passed what I at first took to be small, wild orangetrees, some ten feet high, set in rows and trimmed, with very dark-green leaves not unlike those of the elm in shape. Toward noon I discovered that this was the herva mate, known to us as "Paraguayan tea," and the most important product of the states of Santa Catharina and Paraná, as cattle are of Rio Grande do Sul and coffee of São Paulo.

The herva mate is an evergreen shrub which has its habitat exclusively in the temperate regions of eastern South America at an altitude of from fifteen hundred to three thousand feet. Belonging to the family of the holly, but without spiny leaves, the tree, or bush, averages some twelve feet in height, rarely reaching twice that. The only cultivation it demands is the cutting away of the groves about it. Each bush produces from its second or third year onward some two hundred pounds of leaves and branch ends, which are reduced in the fabrica to about half that amount. Harvest-time is from May to August, and all branches of less than half an inch in diameter are broken off, with the twigs and leaves, the mass submitted to the action of a quick fire for drying purposes and sent to the "factory." Here great sacks of sticks and leaves that have come in from the sertão go through a sort of stamping-mill, which beats them up almost to a powder, some of the largest sticks being removed; whereupon the product is wrapped in hundred-pound lots in wet, hairy cowhides, which shrink as they dry until the bundle is stone-hard. Great numbers of these deceptive-looking bales may be seen at the warehouses and stations in the mate states.

The product is cheaper than tea, though more leaves are needed for an infusion, for it has the advantage that it can be several times resteeped without loss, even with an increase in flavor and strength. Strangely enough, it has never made its way abroad, though foreigners in South America come to demand it as loudly as the natives. The concoction is a brownish-green in color, and has a bitter taste for the novice, which soon wears off. Its

effect on the human system is beneficent. Though it is narcotic in influence, it has no after effects; but, on the contrary, has many medicinal properties, not the least of which are those of blood purifier, tonic, laxative, febrifuge, and stimulant to the digestive organs, annulling even the injurious effects of an exclusive meat diet. The per capita consumption of mate is ten pounds a year in Paraná, which exports vast quantities of it.


The stations were usually mere stops at the foots of knolls on which were larger or smaller clearings and a few paintless, shiningly new shanties among the scanty trees and charred logs that marked the beginning of man's hand-to-hand struggle with the rampant wilderness. Line after line of the dark-green parasol pine-trees lay one behind the other, growing blueblack on the far horizon. The intense respiration of the jungle and scores of hard, red ant-hills a foot or two high suggested our growing proximity to the real tropics. Every night the sun sank blood-red into the spaceless sertão, the pine-trees standing out against the blushing sky after all else had turned black, the moon a silver blotch through the rising mist, or casting into bright relief all the unbroken matta.

Nearly one half of Brazil consists of an immense plateau between two and three thousand feet above sea-level, falling abruptly into the Atlantic, and gradually flattening away northwestward into the great Amazon basin, locally known as Amazonia. Though it is somewhat larger than the United States without its dependencies, Brazil has almost no mountains except the insignificant coast range, and virtually

no lakes. Many of its rivers rise very near the Atlantic, but instead of breaking through the low coast range, they flow inland, those in the southern part of the country emptying finally into the Plata, and those beyond the divide into the Amazon. I had taken the branch line which runs eastward to Curityba, capital of the state of Paraná, with an elevation of nearly three thousand feet. From there the branch line descends to Paranaguá, on the coast. We started Atlanticward at two in the afternoon, our first-class coach bringing up the rear of a train as mixed as the population about us. Curityba, with its red-tile roofs, its brilliant white walls, its palm- and pine trees, green lawns, and its suburban ring of wooden houses, was seen once or twice through a gouged-out hollow in the hills, then disappeared. We creaked laboriously through heavy forests toward a fantastic sky-line of mountains far to the east, as striking as if we were approaching the Andes. Mountain streams and vistas of tangled hills awakened the savage within me and invited me to plunge into the wilderness, out of sight or sound of jangling civilization. We began to follow a rivulet, our little wood-burning Baldwin spitting showers of sparks and cinders back upon us, while all at once there opened out down a great gorge the first vista of what might unhesitatingly be called "scenery" since I had crossed the Andes from Chile. A vast, rolling, heavily wooded, almost mountainous world lay far below, with little white towns here and there contrasting with the distant black of the greenness, farther off faintly seen lagoons backed by other densely blueblack hills.

been following dropped headlong down a great face of rock, breaking itself into white cascades that repeated themselves a score of times before it disappeared in the chartless wilderness at a speed we dared not follow. Our train went crawling dizzily along the edges of precipices, and circling slowly, with the great caution of decrepit old people, in vast curves round and round the wooded mountain that grew ever higher above us. Through tunnels and rock cuttings, across viaducts and lofty iron bridges, along cut-stonefaced precipices, we pursued our cautious descent. A softness crept into the breeze, the feminine breath of the tropics caressed our cheeks, and we reached at length the somber, velvety valleys of Paranaguá.

The short, but decided, descent of three thousand feet ended, the train calmed down from its nervous tension into a mood in keeping with the languid, tropical-wooded, sea-level world. It had suddenly become stickily warm, clothing that had often felt too thin on the plateau above grew incredibly heavy, and as if for final proof that we had entered the real tropics once more, there fell upon us a sudden laziness and indifference to progress, and we loitered about each station, doing nothing for an unconscionable length of time. There came a sunset like a dozen pots of assorted paints kicked over by a mule, and dense, humid, tropical night settled swiftly down upon us like an impenetrable pall.

Next afternoon, to my great relief, the train began to wind itself back up to the plateau, the air taking on a grateful coolness the moment we began to climb. In the morning, when I was pulled out of bed in Curityba in

Then suddenly the stream we had time to catch the five-thirty train back

to the main line, and on which a broken nap in an uncomfortable seat was chiefly dreams about icebergs, I would have given anything within reason for one of those scorned hot hours in Paranaguá. At every station where the train stopped for more than an instant I tumbled off with the rest of the passengers to partake of coffee and pasteis, or cakes. For a woman or a man of the neighborhood was sure to have a table arranged in the shade of the station, with many little white cups which he or she filled with thick black coffee as the travelers deluged down upon them. The Brazilian who is not permitted to drop off at least once an hour and drink from one to four such cups at a tostão, a hundred reis each, and rush back to the train again as the warning bell rings, would feel that he was being cheated out of his birthright.

§ 8

Nowhere from Montevideo to São Paulo had I seen an acre of sterile land, though certainly not ten per cent. of the territory was under cultivation. Now I found myself in the richest and most famous state of Brazil, the coffeegrowing land of São Paulo. Sorocaba was the largest town of the day's journey, and with it the cruder rural region largely disappeared. We passed groups of unquestionably city people here and there, and São Paulo itself burst upon us around a bend, far away and strewn up along, over, and about a dry and barren ridge, then disappeared again for a time. The villages changed to urban scenes, streets began to take on names, electric cars to spin along beside us, endless lines of light-colored houses of concrete with red tile roofs appeared, and at last, five days of

travel north of Uruguay, we came to a halt in a great glass-vaulted modern station in the second city of Brazil— second, that is, in population, for it is first in energy and industry, capital of the most progressive state of the union, and the first real city on the main line from Montevideo northward.

Its unexpected position as capital and metropolis of the world's greatest coffee-producing state has given this once bucolic country town so extraordinary a growth that the Cidade of the nineteenth century is now merely the central tangle of streets in the heart of town. town. From this nucleus run splendid avenues lined with a bushy species of shade-tree, and residence sections with dwellings of coffee kings ranging all the way from sumptuous comfort to magnificent and palatial eyesores roll away across town in various directions. São Paulo has more than half a million inhabitants, a municipal theater for opera, drama, and concerts scarcely second to any in the western hemisphere, and an up-and-coming manner which quickly establishes its claim to equality with modern cities of the temperate zone.

Of the two ways from São Paulo to Rio probably the pleasantest is that by way of Santos and an ocean steamer, chiefly because it is more fitting to enter the peerless harbor of the Brazilian capital by the harbor's mouth and at dawn than to break in at the back door by the government railway. An excellent express of the British "São Paulo Railway Company" left the industrial center at eight in the morning and raced thirty of the fifty miles to Santos across level country in less than an hour. Then we halted at the Alto da Serra for the unfailing coffee and a new engine. This was

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