Philatelic Literature Specialists

Fletcher, H.G.


Route Book of Travels in Neighbourhood, Hints for Travellers, Market Day Dates, and Notes on Yunnan Pronunciation, etc.
Publisher: The Inspector General of Customs, Shanghai, 1927

First edition, hardback, original maroon cloth gilt, xii + 162 pages, folding map at rear. Spine and rear cover slightly sunned, three or four small hand-written notes in ink next to words in the Yunnan Pronunciation section, otherwise in Very Good condition.

A very rare travel book relating to the town of Tengyueh and its surroundings, in Yunnan Province, Western China. The author, H.G. Fletcher, was an official of the Chinese Maritime Customs Service, and was based at the Customs House Tengyueh. Close to the border with Burma (at that time part of British India), Tengyueh was on the trade-route between India and China.
The book contains twenty routes for journeys in the local area; hints for travellers, such as the length of a march, and requisites for a good camping ground; list of market days; and extensive advice on language, Yunnan Pronunciation, Patois, Idiomatic Expressions, Common Terms, etc. Illustrated with several plans, and with a large folding map.
From the author’s Introduction:
“At one time and another during the course of my period in office here it has been incumbent on me to make journeys into the hinterland, whether to inspect the sub-offices under the control of this establishment or for the purpose of gathering information with respect to trade routes hitherto unopened but that, it was thought, might with advantage be controlled by this office. To the results of such inspections or inquiries it is not now necessary to advert: they have all been reported officially in due season. Since, however, the ground covered has been extensive (some 2,000 miles in 154 days), and in view of the necessity of a periodical repetition of at least some of the journeys alluded to, it has occurred to me that my successors might find it convenient to have in their hands – even if only for the sake of criticism – some more or less precise information with regard to the distances to be covered, and so be enabled both to gauge the possibilities of any one day’s travel and also to map out their itinerary for several days in advance without being entirely dependent on the estimates of slothful muleteers and camp followers…”


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