Lost City of the Incas
Hiram Bingham

Further Reading


The short list below concentrates on those books or articles specifically mentioning Machu Picchu or Hiram Bingham.



Hugh Thomson article for The Independent on Hiram Bingham


Machu Picchu and the Camera

By Hugh Thomson


Illustrated catalogue to accompany the exhibition of the same name, analysing Bingham’s photographic output, as well as those many other photographers who followed him to Machu Picchu.

The exhibition has been shown at the British Museum, Oxford University and the Sainsbury Centre, UEA.

Alfred Bingham, Portrait of an Explorer: Hiram Bingham, Discover of Machu Picchu (Iowa State University Press, 1989).

Memoir by his son Alfred which contains invaluable personal details about Bingham and the work of the Yale Peruvian expeditions.

Daniel Buck, Fights of Machu Picchu, (South American Explorers Club Journal 32, 1993).

Considers and dismisses the various rival claims by Europeans and Americans to have discovered Machu Picchu before Bingham.

Richard L. Burger and Lucy Salazar-Burger, edited by  Machu Picchu: Unveiling the Mystery of the Incas  (Yale University Press 2004) 

The 1912 Yale Peruvian Scientific Expedition Collections from Machu Picchu: Human and Animal Remains (Yale University Publications in Anthropology, No 85, 2003)

The catalogue and accompanying specialist set of essays issued for the recent excellent Yale exhibition of Bingham’s finds at Machu Picchu.

The catalogue is essential reading and promotes the view of Machu Picchu as the ‘country estate’ of Pachacuti.

George F Eaton, The Collection of Osteological Material from Machu Picchu (Memoirs of the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, Boston 1916)

(translated into Spanish with Introduction by Sonia Guillén, Lima 1990)

Eaton analysed the bones found at Machu Picchu and was largely responsible for the (since discredited) theory that the population was largely female.

Paul Fejos, Archaeological Explorations in the Cordillera Vilcabamba, Southeastern Peru (Viking Fund Publications in Anthropology no 3, New York 1944)

Important account of subsequent American expedition that expanded on Bingham’s discoveries near Machu Picchu.

Ernesto Che Guevara, Machu Picchu; Enigma de Piedra en América, December 1953, reprinted in Revista de la Casa de las Américas (Havana), vol 28, no 163, JulyAugust 1987

For Guevara’s first published article he chose to write about the place which ‘drives any dreamer to ecstasy’. He also commented astutely that ‘Machu Picchu was to Bingham the crowning of all his purest dreams as an adult child.’

John Hemming, The Conquest of the Incas (Harcourt Brace, 1970).

The definitive modern history of the Conquest, replacing earlier accounts by William Prescott and Sir Clements Markham.

John Hemming and Edward Ranney, Monuments of the Incas (Boston, 1982).

Illustrated survey of Inca ruins.

J.H. Rowe, Machu Pijchu a la Luz de Documentos del Siglo XVI (Kultur 4, Lima, March-April 1987) (also Historica 14 (1) Lima 1990)

On the discovery of the document showing that ‘Pijchu’ was part of Pachacuti’s estate.

In addition to Lost City of the Incas, Hiram Bingham wrote many other earlier accounts of his exploration:

Journal of an Expedition across Venezuela and Colombia (New Haven 1909)

Across South America (New York 1911)

Inca Land (Boston 1922)

Machu Picchu, a Citadel of the Incas (New Haven 1930)


The Possibilities of South America History and Politics as a Field for Research (Bulletin of the International Bureau of American Republics 26 vol 1)

The Ruins of Choqquequirrau (American Anthropologist 12 1911)

Vitcos the Lost Inca Capital (American Antiquarian Society April 1912)

In the Wonderland of Peru (National Geographic April 1913)

The Ruins of Espiritu Pampa (American Anthropologist 16 1914)

The Story of Machu Picchu (National Geographic Feb 1915

Further Explorations in the Land of the Incas (National Geographic May 1916)