a dream of adventure

un rêve d ‘ aventure

a dream of adventure

English version below the picture


Rn rangeant mes étagères j’ai retrouvé , un livre qui m’ avait été offert in mars 1997 et qui relatait les expéditions de la compagnie Citroën, constructeur français d’automobiles en Afrique dans les années 20 et en centre-Asie dans les années 30. Laissez moi rêver en vous racontant brièvement cette dernière expédition.. la croisière Centre-Asie

Le 4 Avril 1931 vous quittiez Beyrouth , vous traversiez la Syrie , l ‘ Irak , l ‘ Iran et l ‘ Afghanistan en conduisant des autochenilles Citroën pour une pacifique mission scientifique . Où que vous alliez , vous étiez bien accueillis par les gens et les autorités . Puis vous avez eu à traverser un chaînon de l ‘ Himalaya : le Pamir ( 4000 m) avec des chevaux et vous avez continué dans le nord de la Chine avec de nouvelles auto – chenilles arrivant de Pékin . Vous avez été retenus prisonniers par des gouverneurs de province n ‘ obéissant plus réellement au gouvernement central de la jeune République de Chine . Vous avez réussi à vous échapper mais vous avez dû éviter la rébellion musulmane . Aussi vous avez eu à traverser le désert de Gobie à moins 30 ° . Après toutes ces difficultés vous êtes arrivés à Pékin le 12 Février de l ‘ année suivante .

Un voyage de 10 mois ! Est – ce un rêve ou la réalité ? c ‘ est la réalité de 1931 – 1932 .. C ‘ était une expédition française souvent appelée ” la Croisière jaune ” organisée par André Citroën . Le chef était Georges – Marie Haardt qui mourut en 1932 à Hong – Kong suite à une pneumonie . Parmi les scientifiques il y avait un Américain le Dr Maynard O William représentant la National Geographic Society . Il y avait aussi Theilhard de Chardin , prêtre, géologue et paléontologue . Et 20 mécanos . L ‘ effort et le courage humain sont allés jusqu ‘ à leurs limites dans cette expédition .

Serait – il possible de refaire un tel voyage de nos jours ?

Source : Les grands dossiers de ” l’ Illustration ” . Ed : Le Livre de Paris

Citroën chenillesI am pictured   with a Citroën 1931 halftrack   Clck to enlarge
Je suis photographié en face d ‘une autochenille Citroën de 1931     Photo Janine Fauquet July 2003 au musée de Mulhouse (Alsace, France)

In decluttering my shelves I found a book offered to me as a birthday gift in March 1997 describing the important expeditions organized by Citroën, ,,French constructor of cars through Africa in the years 20’s then in Centre-Asia in the years 30’s . Let me dream yet in relating brevely this Citroën Asian Center expedition

On the 4th April 1931 you left Beirut, crossed Syria, Iraq , Iran and Afghanistan driving Citroën halftracks for a peaceful and scientist mission . Anywhere , you were welcomed by people and authorities .Then you had to climb up a bit of Himalaya : the Pamir ( 4000 m ) , with horses and you continued in North China with new halftracks coming from Beijing . You remained prisoners by province governors not really obeing at the central government of the young Republic of China . You succeeded to escape but you had to avoid the moslem rebellion . So you had to cross the Gobia desert at minus 30 ° .


At the end you arrived to Beijing on 12 th of February the next year after many difficulties .

A 10 months trip ! Is it a dream or reality ? It is the reality of 1931 – 1932. It was a French expedition often called ” la Croisière jaune ” managed by André Citroën . The chief was Georges – Marie Haardt who died in 1932 in Hong – Kong after a pneumonia . Among the scientist there was an American Dr Maynard O. William representing the National Geographic society .There was also Theilhard de Chardin priest, geologist and paleontologist . And 20 mechanics etc … The human effort and courage have been until their limits in that expedition .

  Would it be possible to remake such a travel nowadays ?

Source : Les grands dossiers de ” l ‘ Illustration ” . Ed . le Livre de Paris

About fauquetmichel

Pour une nouvelle aventure ?
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34 Responses to a dream of adventure

  1. blb1 says:

    What an interesting book that would be to read. I doubt very seriously the trip could be made today safely with the politics of the world.

  2. sunsetdragon says:

    I agree with the commenter above me and do not believe such an adventure can be had today with the politics and violence of the world.
    What a wonderful thought though to be able to do such a thing.

  3. Humor_Me_Now says:

    Wow, Michel and Good Morning. I never heard of this and it was really interesting. I agree with the others-not much chance it could happen today. I read a book by the adventurer Richard Halliburton in grade school. He did many exciting things in life as to travel adventure. He died trying to be the first man to sail a Chinese Junk from Asia to the USA.



  4. L. Marie says:

    I agree with those who said that crossing so many borders would be difficult.
    I traveled to Shanghai several years ago and had trouble getting a visa at first. But I finally received one.

    • ontdhrp says:

      What an adventure, the likes of which would be impossible today, not because of difficult terrain, but politics.

      My website is not working because I’ve been hit with some sort of virus. I am fixing it, but slowly.

  5. cocosangel says:

    Probably then, there wouldn’t have been borders across the countries, and would have been easy to go by vehicle. But now, I wonder if you can make such a trip, without getting prior visas, and stuff to enter a another country.
    But your photo looks smart and handsome.
    And to be photographed in front of a historic vehicle, is a fabulous idea.

  6. Gill McGrath says:

    A wonderful photo of the vehicle and you Michel! And it is a wonderful book you describe. In theory, these days people can now travel ( or be transported) easily to anywhere…. to all the beautiful and interesting places in the world…… instead it is war torn, chaotic and hostile!

  7. mrswrangler says:

    I believe safety would be an issue. But I am coming to the conclusion traveling anywhere is not safe.

  8. jstnotherday says:

    Ah the handsome Michel, in a photo taken at the museum…
    de Mulhouse… what sort of museum was it?

  9. nannyfountain says:

    What wonders we learn from our history! ❤ Love to all of you ❤

  10. “God Speaking To Anne Terri Through The Holy Spirit: Adventures bring to Mind many who love to explore, Anne being one of them. She loves the old Citroen. AMEN”

    “Dieu qui parle à Anne Terri par l’Esprit Saint: Adventures apporter à l’esprit ceux qui aiment explorer, Anne étant l’un d’entre eux. Elle aime la vieille Citroën. AMEN

  11. mimiwi2013 says:

    Very interesting story, Michel! Their trip was difficult, with many obstacles, but they made it through. Today, I don’t think it could happen. Different times, different obstacles—will things ever change? I think not. People do not seem to learn from mistakes made in the past. I enjoy living, but will enjoy Heaven even more when the time comes! The Citroen? I think all men love vehicles—old or new! Same thing with planes! Oh the stories these old vehicles could tell! ❤

  12. Such an interesting post. I learned much. You look great in the photo. I think car museums are wonderful….full of history.
    It’s sad, but I don’t think such an adventure would be possible today. We disagree too much from country to country. sigh.
    Happy Wednesday, hugs, Elizabeth

  13. An amazing journey! The advances in technology in our lifetimes are really impressive. Today, better equipment would make the journey much easier.

    My uncle was a great fan of Citroen cars. He would not drive anything else! They are not very common in the United States, but I saw one here in Minnesota recently. It made me think of my uncle. He died in 1983.

  14. whyzat says:

    I think that, today, it is best to fly over those countries and wave down at people happily and safely! We went to a car museum today that was very interesting. There were cars from the beginning of their existence!

    • I agree with you Dian . When we see antic cars we imagine people ‘s life at their time .
      After the awful war I there has been the time of the grand peaceful expedition and exploits by cars,, trains and planes ( aeropostal flight for instance )

  15. attatudy says:

    What a great story Michel! I imagine there are some adventures out there that would try it today but not because they had to. In that day they didnt have many options like we do today. Thanks for sharing.

  16. cjc22 says:

    Thank you for a good history lesson. I will go and look for more about this and read it. You look very handsome, standing by that car. We have an old car museum in our city. I haven’t been there in many years but think it is time to do so again.

  17. puffpop says:

    An exciting and fascinating adventure indeed! Unfortunately, the turmoil in the world would not allow such an adventure today, especially driving through Syria….

  18. That would be an amazing trip to make today. I don’t know it it would be possible, with all the conflict in the region. It’s a nice thing to dream about doing. How exciting that you got to see this vehicle. Very impressive! 🙂

  19. jstnotherday says:

    Hi Michel, I don’t know if you will have gotten notice of my reply to you. Somethings seem to not be working properly with WordPress these days. I’ve just switched my internet provider. I hope that is not the problem. :-/

    I thought you had heard along with the rest of us about Carolyn. Sunsetdragon has been keeping us up to date. Carolyn’s surgery went well and it is believed that they got all the cancer. She returned home from the hospital and is expected to have a 2 week recovery time. She said she would not likely be on the computer during her recovery time. I am planning to mail her a card today. 🙂

  20. AM says:

    Bravos à ces gens courageux du début des années 30.

    L’esprit d’aventure perdure, malgré les difficultés … De nos jours, le défi est de continuer à explorer de nouvelles pistes. Et il y en a de multiples …

    Amitiés Bonne journée, AM

  21. murisopsis says:

    It is true that in the last century there were frontiers to conquer. Now we must look to the depths of the oceans or to the stars!

  22. This is so interesting, Michel! Thank you for sharing with us! That would be so amazing to do! Something to dream about! 🙂
    I see your Hat was on your adventure in the museum! 😉 😛 May He was in the car?!
    HUGS!!! 🙂

  23. Zakiah says:

    What an interesting and amazing article. I love your photo with the automobile. In the early ’50’s we had a Citroen sedan. it was sea green in color. It was a wonderful addition to my father and uncle’s dreams that came true.

  24. Marilyn Thysell says:

    This is very interesting. Love the photo of you in an automobile of over 60 yrs ago. Thanks for sharing.

  25. Peggy says:

    It looks quite arduous ~

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