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from here he gave us the quartermaster general with a presentation to the border posts, written by his own hand, and the ombudsman was kind enough to send his own ordinance to Tejuco, taking our request and the enclosed letter with the permission of the king. We then headed toward NW, through overgrown hills, and stopped at the Tres Barras ranch, where a few days earlier a jaguar had spread general terror; There we remained while waiting for the desired authorization. The messenger returned that same afternoon and gave us the reply, in which superintendant Ferreira da Camara invited us to have dinner with him the next day in Tejuco. Satisfied, after all, with the long-awaited permission, after the restlessness of waiting, we soon headed for the border post, still a league and a half away, at the Milho Verde Village.

Customs registry

There are ten customs registries around the Diamond District, at a distance of five to six leagues, that is, starting west of Milho Verde : Parauna, distant from Tejuco ten leagues; Bandeirinha, three; Gouveia, five; Rio Pardo, seven; Andaial, four; Inhai, seven; Inhasica, ten; Rio Manso, five; and Itaibaba, six. The soldiers, detached here, from the Dragoes de Minas regiment, have a duty to prevent anyone from entering, wherever they may come, and whatever their position, without a special order from the quartermaster general. The inhabitants of the Diamond District themselves, every time they travel across borders, need to present a written license from the Superintendant General himself. Without these instructions, not even the governor of the province of Minas will enter. On exiting from the diamond district, every person is subjected to rigorous inspection by the soldiers. These are in charge of investigating, with extreme detail, not only all the traveller's bags, all the wrinkles and folds of the packages, but also all the accessible parts of the body itself, to check if they do not hide any diamonds; in case of mere suspicion, the traveler is held for 24 hours to examine whether any precious stones have been swallowed. From this search no one is exempt; the thoroughness depends, however, on the soldiers in service. In order that these custom registries cannot be bypassed by pedestrians, roaming patrols traverse the interior and borders of the District and are allowed to arrest anyone. As soon as the corporal, commander of the post, became aware of the written permission, we had to leave the barracks and, crossing the stream, we found ourselves in the highly sought after Diamond District.

Diamond district

It seems that nature chose the most splendid fields, for the home region of these precious stones, and furnished them with the most