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First Fruits of the Cambridge Anthropological Expedition to Torres Straits


UNDER this sporting title, Dr. Haddon has published a preliminary and popular account of the Cambridge Anthropological Expedition to Torres Straits and its unofficial extension to Sarawak. Expeditions for various scientific purposes have long been familiar. Expeditions for specifically anthropological purposes have been frequently organised in the United States and in Germany; but in this country such an expedition is a “new departure.” Contributions to the cost of the Torres Straits Expedition came from more than one source; the chief part of the funds, however, was supplied by the University of Cambridge—hence the name. The expedition was led by Dr. Haddon, whose interest in the natives had been excited ten years before, when he visited the islands of Torres Straits on a scientific mission of a different character. He secured as colleagues Dr. W. H. R. Rivers, Dr. C. S. Myers, Mr. W. McDougall, Mr. Sidney H. Ray, Mr. C. G. Seligmann and the late Mr. Anthony Wilkin— the majority of them Cambridge men. They left London on March 10, 1898, and the last of them returned on May 31 in the following year. Nearly seven months were spent by most of them in Torres Straits, on the islands and on the mainland of New Guinea, with a short visit to the contiguous part of Australia. Upwards of four months were spent by the leader of the expedition, Mr. Ray and Mr. Seligmann at Sarawak, whither Dr. Myers and Mr. McDougall had preceded them.

Head-Hunters, Black, White and Brown.

By Alfred C. Haddon Pp. xxiv + 426. (London: Methuen and Co., 1901.) Price 15s.


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HARTLAND, E. First Fruits of the Cambridge Anthropological Expedition to Torres Straits . Nature 65, iii–iv (1902).

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