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American Experience
Into the Amazon

Into the Amazon

Tuesday, Jan. 9, at 9 p.m.
Repeats Wednesday, Jan. 10, at 3 a.m.

Also airs on Fusion on Saturday, Jan. 20, at 8 p.m.

This is the remarkable story of the 1914 journey taken by President Theodore Roosevelt and legendary Brazilian explorer Candido Mariano da Silva Rondon into the heart of the South American rainforest to chart an unexplored tributary of the Amazon River.

With six American adventurers, including his son Kermit, Roosevelt spent eight harrowing weeks in one of the most remote and inhospitable places on earth, battling tenacious insects, deadly rapids, fever, hunger and exhaustion on a quest to map an unknown river in one of the wildest and most beautiful places on earth. What was anticipated to be a relatively tranquil journey turned out to be a brutal test of courage and character.

Before it was over, one member of the expedition had drowned, another had committed murder and a third was abandoned to perish in the jungle. Roosevelt would badly injure his leg and beg to be left behind to die. More than a dramatic story of adventure and survival, “Into the Amazon” shines a light on two of the Western Hemisphere’s most formidable men and the culture and politics of their two nations.

 

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