On the Mountains of Ararat
|Author||A. J. Smith|
|Publisher||West Publishing Company|
The material embodied in this book will not interest all the readers equally. Those planning to go on future expeditions will be interested in some things that others do not care for. I have purposely included some material for those who may be interested from a scientific point of view, who are either interested in archaeology or geology. Practically all the material was written in Turkey, some of it in the present tense in Istanbul, Ankara, Erzurum, and on exploration trips. Some of it was written in the past tense, after I got to our base and some after I got home.
I do not profess to be a good writer, you will not need to read very far till you will make this discovery, but I have endeavored to state the facts as I have seen and experienced them. You will also notice that at times I have given way to expressions of sadness and other times of gladness; that was when my heart got ahead of my pen, when I tried as best I could to write what I felt but failed. May I ask the reader’s patience with me, as I do not see some things as others do. I was for twenty years a deceived preacher, but God had mercy on me and revealed Himself to me. Another thought that keeps crowding into my consciousness, is the fact of the brevity of time. A great educator said not long ago, “It’s later than you think”. One of our senators recently made this statement, “We are four minutes to twelve midnight”. I’ll let you ponder these statements yourself, one thing is certain, we are living in the end-time days to which our Lord referred when He said, “As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the son of man”. Luke 17:26.
The record of our expedition as given in this book is correct, however I do not assume the presumptive claim that I have stated all the facts of every exploration, for I did not accompany all of them; but I do claim that I have stated the facts based upon the knowledge and information from personal experience and observations of members of our group.
I wish to register my protest here concerning some erroneous reports made by an unqualified, unscrupulous person concerning the expedition. A great work remains to be done. To telescope into twelve or fifteen days a work that ordinarily would consume from four to six weeks is unreasonable. That such a monumental project should be accomplished in so brief a time, is an insult to human intelligence.
The fact that we did not have sufficient time was merely one of the reasons why we did not undertake further explorations, there was a change in the weather for the worse also, however, the principle cause was rebellion on the part of some of the members in the expeditionary group against pooling their money to help finance Mr. Reshet, who claimed to have seen the ark in the fall of ’48, to have him come and point out to us the object of our quest. Another barrier was the fact that members of the expedition did not cooperate fully with me in the execution of the work. The insatiable craving on the part of some for publicity, when the matter of making releases to the press was the prerogative of the head of the expedition. Such contemptuous conduct future expeditions must guard against and render their repetition impossible. I wish to state too, that I received by far superior treatment and consideration from the Turks than from members of my own group. I have omitted this part of the story purposely from this volume, I feel that the uninformed reading public should know just a little of what we had to contend with. We appreciated the advice and moral support of the Turks, I owe an enduring indebtedness of gratitude for their superlatively wonderful courtesies and kindness.
Table of Contents
- Inducements to Making the Expedition
- An Explanation
- "As It Was in the Days of Noah"
- Our Flight From New York to Istanbul
- Amsterdam, Munich, Tyrolian Alps and Rome
- From Rome to Athens
- The City of Istanbul
- On the Banks of the Famous Boshorus
- A Strange Service--My Second Sunday in Turkey
- Spiritual Fruit In Instanbul
- A Visit to St. Sophia
- In the Land of Islam
- Apostolic and Modern Christianity Contrasted
- Istanbul to Ankara
- First Visit to Ankara
- Ankara the Magic City of Anatolia
- Ankara and Acquisition of Permit
- My Plane Flight from Ankara to Erzurum
- My First Sight of Mt. Ararat
- Here and There in Anatolia
- Eastern Anatolia
- Initial Exploration Trip to the West of Ararat
- At Surbehan--Military Post
- First Day Climbing, First Night on the Mountains
- Exploration Trip Up the Mountains--Succeeding Days and Nights--Turkish Patrol
- We Break Up Camp at Foot of Mount Bichareh
- Back to our Headquarters at Bayazit
- Exploration Trip by Nationals
- At Bayazit
- Revolutionary Changes in Turkey in Past 25 Years
- Description of Mountains
- Expedition Not a Failure
- The Ark, the Deluge, and Geology
- Turkish History About the Deluge
- Difficult Task
Chapter XXXVII -- Difficult Task
What makes research work and exploration trips difficult east of the Ararats is because Armenia has been divided, and that part which was ceded to Russia and known now as Armenian S. S. R. holds many secrets about the deluge and Noah’s Ark. Could we have access to Artaxata, the ancient capital of Armenia and Echmiadzin, the seat of the Primate of the Armenian Church and Nakhichevan, traditionally reported to have been founded by Noah, it would be a revelation to us what all has been kept in hiding all these years since Russia dropped the iron curtain on that territory.
The province of Kars ceded to Turkey by Russia at the close of World War I is a field for scientific research work, that would yield rich archaeological treasures hitherto undiscovered. There are the ancient ruins of the once great city of Ani, capital of the Armenian kingdom during the ninth and tenth centuries when this city was known all over the old world for her palaces, churches, and fortresses. It stood on a rocky promontory, radiating its glory in all directions. Ani was captured in the fourteenth century by the Turks, and today is merely a heap of stone and a few standing walls.
The city of Kars itself is to the Armenians merely a memory, and the ruins of it show the glory of the Armenian kingdom of more than one thousand years ago. Kars was built by Russians and is situated near the Eastern Turkey frontier.
A. J. Smith,
1913 Blvd. St., Greensboro, N. C.