Richard Spruce Collection


Spruce's travels for 1855
Taken from Notes of a Botanist on the Amazon and Andes (1908)


Go to top of pageMarch


15th : 6 am

left Manaus (Barra) along the Rio Amazonas (Solimoes) 

17th : pm

passed the mouth of the large Rio Purús 

25th : pm

reached Sao Paulo d'Olivença 
27th: 4 pm reached Tabatinga, Brazilian border town


reached Loreto, the first town in Peru 

30th : pm

reached Cochiquinas on the south bank of the Rio Amazonas
Go to top of pageApril  

reached Iquitos


reached Natua, on the north bank of the Amazon a few miles above the mouth of the Río Ucayali

16th : midday

left Nauta

18th : 8 pm

reached 'San Regis', old missionary town


reached Parinari, left late the next day


reached Urarinas

28th : night

left the Amazon and entered the Río Huallaga .....and stopped at the village of Lagunas (La Laguna)

Go to top of pageMay


4th : 5 pm

first view of the Andes....... the part seen is the "Serra de Curiayacu"

5th : 10 am Image: Yurimaguas/Huallaga

reached the town of Yurimaguas

Go to top of pageJune


12th : 7.30 pm Image: Pequepeque

Left Yurimaguas and continued up the Río Huallaga

13th : 4.30 pm

passed the mouth of the Río Cainarache (Cainaiuche)

17th : early morning

along a rapid where the river narrowed, passed some hot springs eminating from a black cliff

18th Image: Rio Huallaga Aguirre

traversed the rapids of the Río Huallaga, called Yuracyacu (Yurac-yacu) and Curiyacu (Curi-yacu) where "water here bursts into foam over rocks"

18th : evening

reached Chasuta on banks of Río Huallaga


left for Shapaja (Chapaja), a short distance, but traversing many rapids

20th Image: Rio Huallaga near Shapaja

traversed the rapids of Esteroyacu (Estero-yacu), passed Shapaja

20th Image: Rio Mayo

reached mouth of Río Mayo, ascended Río Mayo to Río Cumbasa, from where they portaged the heavily laden canoes to Juan Guerra

late June Image: Tarapoto side of La Escalera

arrived in Tarapoto and established his residence there

Go to top of pageNovember



left for Cerro Campana, arrived at village of Lamas (6 deg 5 mins South) the next day


reached Tabalosos on the upper Río Mayo

Go to top of pageNovember - December

intensive collecting in the region of Cerro Campana and "Lirio Pampa"

Photographs courtesy of S. Knapp (The Natural History Museum, London)

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Funded by Mellon foundation     In partnership with RBG Kew