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0027 Memoir on Maps of Chinese Turkistan and Kansu : vol.1
Memoir on Maps of Chinese Turkistan and Kansu : vol.1 / Page 27 (Grayscale High Resolution Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000215
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teristic of the great drainagelers wastes of innermost Asia and of special interest to the' geographical 'student of their present and past. The limits of areas of absolutely bare drift-sand, clay or gravel; of desert ground supporting vegetation of some kind; of irrigated and hence cultivable ground which in these regions, under the influence of peculiar factors, is subject to comparatively rapid changes, and similar features of importance, all claimed careful attention, only assured by prolonged observation and study and not ordinarily falling within the Indian surveyor's training.

The record of local names along our common routes was another task invariably . effected by myself. For routes followed only by my assistants, I did Record of local names. my best to check and correct the record of local names brought back by them through the independent examination of natives acquainted with the ground. The methods used for a strictly phonetic record of all Turkistan local names and for their systematic transcription, as well as for the transliteration of Chinese names necessarily recorded on a different basis, will be fully explained below in the chapter dealing with the preparation of the present maps.




After these general observations I may now proceed to a summary record of the survey operations carried out on each successive journey. For those of 1900-01 Colonel St. George Gore, R. E., late Surveyor General of India, had kindly provided the help of Sub-Surveyor Babu ( now Rai Sahib ) Ram Singh, previously employed on the last of Captain Deasy's expeditions, together with the necessary equipment of surveying instruments and a grant of Rs. 2000 to cover additional expenses. After reaching the westernmost border of Chinese Turkistan from Hunza over the Kilik pass, survey work was commenced at the head of the Taghdum-bash Pamir by the close of June 1900.

Here as throughout our travels in the mountains I endeavoured to supplement it, as

far as my limited time permitted, by photogrammetrie work with a Photogrammetric work. Bridges-Lee photo-theodolite kindly lent by the Indian Meteorological

Department. A large selection of the mountain panoramas taken with it on the Pamirs andin the K'un-lun range south of Khotan has been published by the Royal Geographical Society ;1 and though the ground west of the Muz-tagh-ate massif is the only area which has been actually mapped from them, these photographic records have subsequently proved more than once of great value in clearing up points of topographical interest, besides serving other geographical purposes.

From the Chinese-Afghan border on the Wakhjïr pass where it overlooks the glacier sources of the main Oxus headwaters, the survey extended through the

Survey of Sarikol.   whole length of the main Sarikol valley to the great eastward bend
of the Zarafshàn river below Tash-kurghan. 2 Triangulation was started at the head of the Taghdum-bash with the help of points supplied by the surveys of the Pamir Boundary Commission and Captain Deasy. 3 It was subsequently extended for a considerable distance to the north along the great meridional range which is crowned by the ice peaks of the Muz-tàgh-ata and Shiwakte (or.Kongur) massifs. 4 A series of triangulation stations fixed around the Little Kara-kul lake permitted the determination of several of the most prominent peaks on that range.


' See Mountain Panoramas from the Pamirs and Ewen Lun. By Dr. M. Aurel Stein, London 1908 (29 views and map, folio),

2 See Slieet No. 3; for a descriptive account, cf. .Ruins of notes, pp. 5¢ sqq.

3 Thié triangulation in a limited" area has since

been superseded by the exact operations carried out here for the geodetic connection of the Indian and Russian triangulation systems; see Major K. Mason's Appendix A.

' Cf. ,Notes on. Sheet No. 2; Ruins of X otan,, pp. 74 sqq.