Peck's letter to Bryant about the 1909 Resolution


Peck's letter to Bryant about the 1909 Resolution


January 16th, 1910


Handwritten letter from Annie Peck to Henry G. Bryant, Secretary of the American Alpine Club. The letter is on the stationary of the Hotel Alabama in New York and is dated January 16, 1910. Peck writes about the resolution passed by the club the previous year regarding the determination of the height of Mt. Husscaran in Peru. She asks Bryant how her letter was received by the Club at their meeting and what action was taken regarding the resolution. She also speculates as to how Fanny Workman was arriving at her own estimate of the elevation of the mountain and complains that Workman would not share her estimates with Peck when asked. Peck also discusses her own work on the subject, mentions that a Dr. Cook had been dropped by the Club, though more quietly than he had been from other, similar clubs.






The American Alpine Club Library Archives


The American Alpine Club Library


"Dear Mr. Bryant:
Please observe my change of address which I trust will be permanent, at least for the season. Prof. Parker told me a little about the Alpine Club meeting though he missed part of it. He said he thought you were pleased with my letter and that you had read it perhaps to the council. I am glad if he was correct in his opinion, for of course I do not wish to antagonize any one, though I did not that the seven members who voted for the resolution a year ago would especially like my letter. As Prof. Fay introduced it he was obviously the more responsible, but if no one opposed it, a matter of which I am ignorant, I suppose all sympathized with him more or less.
I should be glad to know just what was done about the matter or not done at the meeting. Perhaps you can tell me unofficially how Prof. Fay seemed, as also what action the committee or the Club decided to take in accordance with the resolution last year.
Also I should be pleased to hear something more of Mrs. Workman's triangulation. Perhaps by this time you have received a letter explaining the action more fully.
It is a little amusing, as Mrs. Workman's record as I understand it is based on a hypsometric reading and not a triangulation. Further, when I wrote to her last I suggested that her observations would be a matter of interest to me as well as to others and said I had looked for them in vain in her articles and books. Perhaps I had overlooked them and I should be obliged if she would tell me where I could find them. She replied that they were not given anywhere, it would be uninteresting to most persons and would take too much space and she did not offer to give them to me.
As she has declared her readiness to produce her proofs I think it is quite within my province to ask her directly for her observations. I sent mine to Prof. Maroise of the Weather Bureau as also to Prof. Parker to reckon up in order to be quite disinterested, and am ready to give them to any one who wants them. It would seem reasonable that she should give out her figures.
No doubt they are all right, but I should like to know what they are. Prof. Parker said the same. Alas he seems to think that they hypsometer observation at such an altitude is more apt to be right than the triangulation. Of course nobody needs to take my estimate in preference to a triangulation, but I do not have to abandon my belief that the mountain is a good deal more than 22000 ft.
I am pleased to hear that you dropped Dr. Cook though more quietly than the Explorers' Club, Arctic Club and the Brooklyn Institute.
I was especially interested, because on the way home from Baltimore last year Prof. Fay took pains to introduce the subject and say that he disapproved of Parker's attitude and thought a man's word should be believed.
It was at the same time that he asked me "Who was Raimonde?" having accepted already his figures as authority for the altitude.
Hoping to hear from you such particulars as would be of special interest to me, I am
Very truly yours,
Annie S. Peck

I should have written earlier except for my moving."

Original Format

Correspondence, handwritten on paper.




“Peck's letter to Bryant about the 1909 Resolution,” The Collections of the American Alpine Club Library, accessed September 26, 2021,

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