[D20 CoC] Beyond the Mountains of Madness Campaign - Prologue

jdeleski

First Post

"Little by little they rose grimly into the western sky; allowing us to witness various bare,
bleak and blackened summits...in the reddish Antarctic light against the provocative
background of iridescent ice-dust clouds. In the whole spectacle there was a persistent,
pervasive hint of stupendous secrecy and potential revelation...I could not help feeling
that they were evil things--mountains of madness whose farther slopes looked out over
some accursed ultimate abyss."
--H.P. Lovecraft

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~
In September of 1930, researchers from Arkham’s Miskatonic University, led by
Professors Dyer and Lake, set sail for the Antarctic continent on a bold venture of
exploration and discovery. Two months later they landed in Antarctica near Ross Island;
twenty men, fifty-five dogs, and five large Dornier aeroplanes were set upon the ice.
Their mission was to survey a geologic history of the Earth’s last frontier, to chart from
the air where no human foot had stepped, and to determine at last, once and for all,
whether Antarctica was indeed one land mass or several.

In much of this they were successful. From November of 1930 until mid-January of 1931,
the expedition achieved goal after goal, milestone after milestone. Aerial explorations
flew over and mapped thousands of square miles of previously unexplored territory. Sled
teams took core samples from scattered spots over nearly a quarter of the continent.
However, history does not remember the Miskatonic Expedition for its successes, but for
its final tragic failure.

The end of the expedition came just as the team seemed on the brink of their most
spectacular triumph. On January 23rd, a large party led by Professor Lake, broke through
into an unbelievable treasure-trove of ancient bones and fossils in a series of caverns at
the foot of a hitherto-unknown mountain range. For 2 days, they explored the caves,
bringing up specimen after specimen, some utterly unlike any living things that have ever
been studied by science. Then they were never heard from again; all were believed killed
by a tremendous Antarctic gale that swept the campsite on January 24th. A rescue
mission the following day found only silence and a few pathetic remains of the tragedy.

Now, in March 1933, a new expedition is forming, intent upon a return to that forbidding
Antarctic plateau and Lake’s campsight. British world explorer James Starkweather and
American geologist William Moore have joined forces to attack the Antarctic. The two
men have experience with harsh environments, both having traveled in the Himalayas, and
Starkweather on the Arctic ice cap as well. Their stated goal is to return to the high, cold
interior of the Antarctic continent and to finish the work that Lake and the other began
three years ago. The two are gathering a team of scientists and technical experts whom
they believe will allow them to succeed despite the dangers.

Thus begins the next chapter in those Mountains of Madness.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Recruiting Office can be found here.
A history of our events and evidence can be found here

To read the attached newspaper clippings, you may need to first save them on your hard drive.
 

Attachments

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The Shaman

First Post
March 2, 1933

Mr. James Starkweather
Amherst Hotel
New York City, New York
USA

Sir:

Please allow this letter to serve as an introduction to your acquaintance.

My name is Fráncisco Guerini and I am writing to you regarding your exploration of the Antarctic interior. I wish to offer my service to your fine expedition.

I have spent recent years in the service of Señor Reichert and Padre De Agostini in the exploration of the Hielo Patagonico Sur, including the first ascent of Cerro Mayo and the reconnaissance of the Upsala and Bertacchi glaciers and the Fitz Roy group. I have demonstrated my skills as a mountaineer and guide and have rendered my best service to each great man.

I am a member of the Club Andino de Chile and can offer many fine references of my skill as requested. I speak most excellent English as taught by my British mother.

I look forward to the honour of your reply.

With sincerity,

Fráncisco Guerini

Fráncisco Guerini
Hosteria Las Torres
Punta Arenas
Chile
 

jdeleski

First Post
Francisco Guerini Invite

May 30, 1933​







My dear Fráncisco Guerini,​

Thank you for your letter of the 28th. It gives me great pleasure in accepting your application to become a team member of the Starkweather—Moore Expedition of 1933.

You have been among rare company indeed, Mr. Guerini! As you might expect, I am very familiar with the Patagonian explorations of Dr. Frederico Reichert, known warmly as the Father of climbing, and also of Father Alberto. In the land Magellan named after the mythical, giant-sized men that once roamed there, none stood taller than Padre de Agostini! I eagerly look forward to our coming discussions of your exploits on those famous glaciers.

Your amazing accomplishments in the field with these fine leaders would have guaranteed you a place in any case, but your historic induction into the Club Andino de Chile has marked you as but one of a select few men whom Dame Nature, in all her mysterious wisdom, has chosen as the templates upon which a new breed of explorers will be formed. Mark my words, Sir! No normal man would tempt the frozen bleaks of the South in the manner that we do, for a normal man would surely perish in the attempt. You and I are not normal men, Sir, and afterwards the whole world shall know it. Shackleton failed to land on the South Continent and spent a long, cold, frozen year on the ice, and he was feted as a hero. Think what the world will think of us, for surely we will outdo him!

Please be so kind as to join us at our suite here at the Amherst on September 1st.

Sincerely,

James Starkweather

Expedition Leader









Amherst HoteL​


8th Avenue and 44th STreeT
New York City, New York







 
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Morpheus

Exploring Ptolus
March 2, 1933

Mr. James Starkweather
Amherst Hotel
New York City, New York
USA


Dear Mr. Starkweather,

I hope this letter finds you in good spirits. My name is Martin LeBlanc and I am writing to offer my services to your expedition in the primary role of photographer. I also have some talent as a journalist and I would be willing to do either of these tasks (or both) as the situation required. Enclosed are several articles and pictures that I have done.
I have been published in several periodicals-the most recent being the September issue of National Geographic. The article is entitled The Lost Incas and was the centerpiece of that issue. I spent several months in the Andes for that article and acquired some acclimation to hostile environments. I believe that you wil find me to be the calibre of man you are seeking.
I have several references as needed. I look forward to your reply.

Sincerely,

Martin LeBlanc
27 Imperial Place
Montreal, Quebec
Canada
 

jdeleski

First Post
Martin LeBlanc Invite

May 30, 1933​







Martin LeBlanc
27 Imperial Place
Montreal, Quebec
Canada

Dear Marin LeBlanc

Thank you for your letter of the 28th. It is indeed a pleasure to accept your application to become a team member of the Starkweather—Moore Expedition of 1933.

I must say, Mr. LeBlanc, that after perusing your submitted photographs and writings, I was awestruck at the magnificence and grandeur of the environments and achievements which you expertly captured on film and in writing!

At the moment, we do have a vacancy for a photographer and journalist of your talents on our expedition, a vacancy which I am certain you will fill with fortitude, determination, and courage to shame the heart of the even the most Herculean of Heroes! Your desire to catalogue in pictures and writings the accomplishments of myself and the other members of the expedition is one which I heartily admire. I daresay that our coming exploits on the crystalline fields of Antarctica will make history, and you are just the man to enshrine our astounding achievements for all of the world to admire.

Please be so kind as to join us at our suite here at the Amherst on September 1st.

Sincerely,

James Starkweather

Expedition Leader








Amherst Hotel​


8th Avenue and 44th Street
New York City, New York

 

Bobitron

Explorer
March 2, 1933

Mr. James Starkweather
Amherst Hotel
New York City, New York
USA

Dear Sir;

Buon giorno. I hope this letter finds you in excellent health.

My name is Vittorio Liuzzi of Modena, Italy. A colleague has referred me to your regarding an upcoming expedition to the Antarctic.

I am certain my skills as a Mechanical Engineer and expert with demolitions will be valued during your expedition. I have just finished a term of lengthly employ in the service of the Alaska Railroad Company, helping to extend the portions of the line to the Kennecott Copper Mine. I was in command of a crew of three engineers responsible for creating shelter, clearing obstacles, and erecting temporary bridges. Our work was concentrated in barren and rugged areas; therefore, I have recent experience in artic weather conditions.

Some of my past employments have included the position of Chief Engineer on the Norwegian cruise yacht 'Stella Polaris' from 1927-1930, helping assemble a munitions factory at the edge of the Amazon in Brazil, clearing a mountain pass in Switzerland for a new railroad through the Alps. I also was a young engineer on E. H. Harriman's lavishly-outfitted George W. Elder as it made the famous voyage through the Inside Passage, the Gulf of Alaska, the Aleutian Archipelago, and northward through the Bering Sea, all practically uncharted at the time.

For references, please contact the following people;

Naturalist George Bird Grinnell of New York
Captain Anders Bergström of the Bergen Line, CO of the Stella Polaris
Niklaus Blattner, Financier of the Alpine Railroad Endeavor
General Tiamo de Almeida Neves, Head of Expansion and Development for Os Braços e o Munition Companhia de Brasil
George D. Franklin, Alaska Railroad Company

I will wait for your reply here in Chicago where I am taking holiday. It will take me no more than a few days to reach you in New York to prepare for the expedition.

Sincerely,


Vittorio Liuzzi

Vittorio Liuzzi
The Drake Hotel
140 East Walton Place, Chicago
USA
 
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jdeleski

First Post
Approval of Vittorio Liuzzi Application

June 1, 1933​





Vittorio Liuzzi​
The Drake Hotel
140 East Walton Place, Chicago
USA

Dear Vittorio Liuzzi,

Thank you for your letter of the 30th. It is an extraordinary pleasure for me to approve your application to become a team member of the Starkweather—Moore Expedition of 1933.

I must admit, Mr. Luizzi, that your credentials and stellar experience have impressed me greatly! Since I was only passingly familiar with the explorations of E.H. Harriman Jr., I took the liberty of contacting one of his colleagues to confirm your background, and I am absolutely thrilled to report that you received nothing but glowing references as to your determination, courage, and expertise. He even mentioned an incident where you saved Edward Henry Jr.'s life during one of his frequent polar bear hunts in the uncharted fiords! Bravo, Mr. Liuzzi, bravo!

Sir, you should know that as noteworthy as your experiences were with E.H. Harriman, for ever after our historic undertaking to Antarctica, you will be regarded as legend! The Starkweather-Moore Antarctic Expedition of 1933 will be one that will shake the very foundations of science, leaving all mankind in our debt for furthering the boundaries of human endeavour. We will be mentioned by historians of the future in the same breath as Magellan, Columbus and Cooke! I salute your spirit, Sir!

Please be so kind as to join us at our suite here at the Amherst on September 1st.

Sincerely,

James Starkweather

Expedition Leader


Amherst Hotel
8th Avenue and 44th Street
New York City, New York

 
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taitzu52

First Post
March 8, 1933

Mr. James Starkweather
Amherst Hotel
New York City, New York
USA


Dear Mr. Starkweather,

I have been referred to you by my esteemed colleagues in the field. Having had the pleasure of hearing Professor Moore's lectures at Northwestern some time ago, I am now contacting you as a petition for a place on your expedition.

I have been working with the Wyoming Lode Silver Corporation for the last several years as a surveyor and prospector. My skills with state-of-the-art electrical equipment have been furnished under their training. This includes surface observation, as well as the use of sonic and radio technology. As I mentioned, my background is in Geology, and have received my letters at Univ. of Wisconsin, Anne Arbor. I am also certified as an expert instructor in mountain climbing.

My current contract is presently under negotiation, and I am free to travel to New York to discuss the details of this expedition further. Please feel free to contact WLS Co., as I am sure that they will furnish the highest of recommendations to choose my services for this endeavor.

Sincerely yours,

James R. Poole
1600 17th St.
Denver, Colorado
USA

(OOC- hebrewnational *at* hotmail *dot* com ....for email & IM)
 

eabha

First Post
March 10, 1933

Mr. James Starkweather
Amherst Hotel
New York City, New York
USA

Dear Mr. Starkweather:

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Annie Mahoney, and I am pleased to offer my services as a physician on your planned expedition to Antarctica.

I received full medical training at the University of Toronto School of Medicine and am now a member of the faculty at St. Michael’s Hospital. I have included for your examination two letters of recommendation: one from Surgeon-in-Chief, Dr. R. T. Christensen, and another from the Head of General Surgery, Dr. K. P. Lupton. I am sure these letters speak for themselves regarding my abilities as a surgeon. However, should you require it, a complete curriculum vitae – which also outlines the many articles I have had published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal – can be provided as well.

My time at St. Michael’s has been invaluable to me and the development of my skills. However, I fear that academia is not for me and am currently looking for a more suitable opportunity to use my talents.

I grew up in a variety of northern communities both here in Ontario and in Manitoba, and I am quite used to the rigours of life in cold climates. My own father, the eminent geologist Dr. James J. Mahoney, was a member of the Canadian Arctic Expedition of 1913 – 1918 (northern party) and I like to think some of his wanderlust and vigour have been passed on to me.

Thank you for your consideration. I am looking forward to your reply.

Sincerely,

Annie K. Mahoney

Dr. Annie K. Mahoney
Associate Professor, Division of General Surgery
St. Michael’s Hospital
Toronto, Ontario
 

jdeleski

First Post
Approval of Poole Application

June 3, 1933





Dear James R. Poole,

Thank you for your letter of the 1st. It is indeed a great pleasure to approve your application to become a team member of the Starkweather—Moore Expedition of 1933.

First, let me congratulate you on rising so far in your chosen field. Your academic credentials are most impressive, and I’m sure that you will prove to be a veritable asset to the geological department of the expedition. Add to that your expertise in cartography and mountain climbing, and I cannot help but feel that we are assured of glory and accolades!

This is a noble thing that you have surrendered yourself to, Sir! Even Angels would fear to tread where we dare. I can say without worry of contradiction that Marco Polo himself could never have conceived of such a voyage, and you will never attempt the like after it. You will never forget this, Sir. At the end of your days, the last thing you will see is the vast snowy plains of the Antarctic, and the cold white peaks of the Miskatonic Mountains!

Please be so kind as to join us at our suite here at the Amherst on September 1st.

Sincerely,

James Starkweather

Expedition Leader








Amherst Hotel​


8th Avenue and 44th Street
New York City, New York













 

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