GEIC Survey of Nikumaroro (1937)

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In October of 1937, as the first step in a colonization plan designed to relieve overpopulation in the Gilbert and Ellice Islands colony, Lands Commissioner Henry E. “Harry” Maude, assisted by Cadet Officer Eric R. Bevington, and accompanied by 19 Gilbertese “delegates” made a visit to the Phoenix Islands. In his book, Of Islands and Men, Maude says, of Gardner Island (Nikumaroro), that “the island was thoroughly explored from end to end.” A more accurate account of this first documented visit to the island since the Earhart disappearance in July, 1937, is provided by a diary kept by Cadet Bevington.