[an error occurred while processing this directive] Oriental Institute | Pioneers to the Past | General Hambro's House, Baghdad, Mesopotamia
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General Hambro's House, Baghdad, Mesopotamia

April 7, 1920

My dear Frances —

I sent Charles a long journal letter a fortnight ago, and another to you day before yesterday from Hillah. I hope they have duly reached you. Both were registered. My situation as to news from you is deplorable. Not a single home letter here at the American Consul’s office! It is now seven and a half weeks since I have had a word from home. Last night a large batch of mail arrived for all the members of the expedition, but not a single line for me. Apparently the Cairo Consul’s office is not at fault, for among last night’s mail was a letter for me from the Cleveland Museum, addressed to the Cairo Consul and duly forwarded here care Baghdad Consul. I am going to the Baghdad post office this morning with the envelope of this letter to see if they can throw any light on the mysterious disappearance of over seven weeks mail. It is dismal enough, knocking about in these remote and benighted lands, thousands of miles from home, but I assure you the added circumstance of absolutely no home communications renders the whole journey melancholy enough. Well, enough of such troubles and back to the job!

Our programme is now definitely settled and without doubt can be carried through on schedule time, as follows:

Baghdad and vicinity 9 day - This includes a trip up the Euphrates as far as Hît and probably beyond, occupying four days,

Baghdad to Mosul and return 10 days

Baghdad to Bisutun in Persia 6 days - This last trip is chiefly to inspect and secure archaeological details from the huge relief of Darius the Great, overlooking the great highway from Babylon to Ecbatana, the ancient capital of Persia, the modern Hamadan.

In 25 days therefore, we should be back in Baghdad, with the above programme behind us,that is we shall be ready to leave for Basrah and take ship there for Egypt again, early in May. I am just making arrangements for our passage by oil steamer from Basrah to Port Said, sailing from Basrah some time between the 5th and 10th of May. It now looks very much as if we could sail from Egypt for Italy by the first of August, and from Naples for New York not later than August 15th and probably earlier. I may be home therefore before the first of September.

For the full story of my exciting trip you should come to the special exhibit “Pioneers to the Past: American Archaeologists in the Middle East, 1919-1920,” at the Oriental Institute!

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