THE WELSH INDIANS-A LATER CHAPTER The fascinating problem of 'The Welsh Indians' has been a constantly recurrent theme in Welsh literature and history for several centuries. The climax of the speculation and the theorising was reached when John Evans of Waunfawr commenced his memorable journey of exploration in 1792. John Evans combined remarkable physical energy with extraordinary courage and missionary fervour in his quest; and although he had to admit failure of the venture where the Welsh Indians were concerned, his success in the pioneering geographical exploration of the upper reaches of the Missouri River was an outstanding achievement in North American history. Professor David Williams in his very comprehensive article entitled 'John Evans's Strange Journey' (published in Transactions of the Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion, 1948), has reviewed all the available literature in Wales, England and North America. It seems very unlikely that any other relevant detail can be added to his masterly monograph. Professor David Williams quotes John Evans's final opinion: "In respect of the Welsh Indians,' he said, 'I have only to inform you that I could not meet with such a people, and from the intercourse I have had with Indians from latitude 35 to 49 I think you may with safety inform our friends that they have no existence". This forthright view was expressed in 1798. Such a statement coming from a man who had set out so enthusiastically- stimulated by the active encouragement of lolo Morganwg and William Owen (-Pughe) and supported by a letter of introduction from the Reverend Thomas Charles of Bala-seems completely conclusive and final. Even so, the belief in the Welsh Indians persisted for many years; and twenty years later, in 1819, 'a Welsh-American, one John T. Roberts, of Oneida County in the State of New York, yet once more set out in search of the descendants of Madoc, but with equally futile results,' according to Professor David Williams. By strange coincidence there was an animated and prolonged correspondence on Welsh Indians in The Kaleidoscope during 1818 and 1819. The Kaleidoscope; or Literary and Scientific Mirror, was issued from the Liverpool Mercury Office, as a supplementary journal, and it seems not inappropriate to add a brief note on The Kaleidoscope as an appendix to this communication. It was whilst turning over the leaves of the first volume that the correspondence concerning Welsh Indians came to light, and it appeared to be of sufficient interest to justify re- publication, at least, in part; as it revealed in a striking fashion that the subject was still of considerable general interest at that time. Of particular interest is the penultimate letter of the series, written in 1819 by Owen Williams of Cardigan- shire and Baltimore, because he presented a bold assertion, apparently based on personal knowledge, that was a direct contradiction of the opinion expressed by John Evans. It is disappointing that there were no comments, critical or otherwise, on this confident claim by Owen Williams. The Kaleidoscope correspondence on Welsh Indians includes letters directly submitted by contributors as well as reprints of articles from other journals,