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Title: Stanley in Africa - The Wonderful Discoveries and Thrilling Adventures of the - Great African Explorer, and Other Travelers, Pioneers and - Missionaries
Author: Boyd, James P.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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       *       *       *       *       *




                               IN AFRICA.


                         WONDERFUL DISCOVERIES


                          THRILLING ADVENTURES


                       THE GREAT AFRICAN EXPLORER

                               AND OTHER





                          JAMES P. BOYD, A.M.

           Author of “Political History of the United States”
                  and “Life of Gen. U. S. Grant,” etc.

                          ROSE PUBLISHING CO.,

                            TORONTO, CANADA.

                            Copyright, 1889


                             JAMES P. BOYD.


A volume of travel, exploration and adventure is never without
instruction and fascination for old and young. There is that within us
all which ever seeks for the mysteries which are bidden behind mountains,
closeted in forests, concealed by earth or sea, in a word, which are
enwrapped by Nature. And there is equally that within us which is touched
most sensitively and stirred most deeply by the heroism which has
characterized the pioneer of all ages of the world and in every field of

How like enchantment is the story of that revelation which the New
America furnished the Old World! What a spirit of inquiry and exploit it
opened! How unprecedented and startling, adventure of every kind became!
What thrilling volumes tell of the hardships of daring navigators or of
the perils of brave and dashing landsmen! Later on, who fails to read
with the keenest emotion of those dangers, trials and escapes which
enveloped the intrepid searchers after the icy secrets of the Poles, or
confronted those who would unfold the tale of the older civilizations and
of the ocean’s island spaces.

Though the directions of pioneering enterprise change, yet more and more
man searches for the new. To follow him, is to write of the wonderful.
Again, to follow him is to read of the surprising and the thrilling. No
prior history of discovery has ever exceeded in vigorous entertainment
and startling interest that which centers in “The Dark Continent” and has
for its most distinguished hero, Henry M. Stanley. His coming and going
in the untrodden and hostile wilds of Africa, now to rescue the stranded
pioneers of other nationalities, now to explore the unknown waters of
a mighty and unique system, now to teach cannibal tribes respect for
decency and law, and now to map for the first time with any degree of
accuracy, the limits of new dynasties, make up a volume of surpassing
moment and peculiar fascination.

All the world now turns to Africa as the scene of those adventures which
possess such a weird and startling interest for readers of every class,
and which invite to heroic exertion on the part of pioneers. It is the
one dark, mysterious spot, strangely made up of massive mountains, lofty
and extended plateaus, salt and sandy deserts, immense fertile stretches,
climates of death and balm, spacious lakes, gigantic rivers, dense
forests, numerous, grotesque and savage peoples, and an animal life of
fierce mien, enormous strength and endless variety. It is the country of
the marvelous, yet none of its marvels exceed its realities.

And each exploration, each pioneering exploit, each history of adventure
into its mysterious depths, but intensifies the world’s view of it and
enhances human interest in it, for it is there the civilized nations are
soon to set metes and bounds to their grandest acquisitions——perhaps in
peace, perhaps in war. It is there that white colonization shall try its
boldest problems. It is there that Christianity shall engage in one of
its hardest contests.

Victor Hugo says, that “Africa will be the continent of the twentieth
century.” Already the nations are struggling to possess it. Stanley’s
explorations proved the majesty and efficacy of equipment and force amid
these dusky peoples and through the awful mazes of the unknown. Empires
watched with eager eye the progress of his last daring journey. Science
and civilization stood ready to welcome its results. He comes to light
again, having escaped ambush, flood, the wild beast and disease, and
his revelations set the world aglow. He is greeted by kings, hailed by
savants, and looked to by the colonizing nations as the future pioneer of
political power and commercial enterprise in their behalf, as he has been
the most redoubtable leader of adventure in the past.

This miraculous journey of the dashing and intrepid explorer, completed
against obstacles which all believed to be insurmountable, safely ended
after opinion had given him up as dead, together with its bearings on the
fortunes of those nations who are casting anew the chart of Africa, and
upon the native peoples who are to be revolutionized or exterminated by
the last grand surges of progress, all these render a volume dedicated to
travel and discovery, especially in the realm of “The Dark Continent,”
surprisingly agreeable and useful at this time.



  HENRY M. STANLEY,                                                 19

Stanley is safe; the world’s rejoicings; a new volume in African
    annals; who is “this wizard of travel?” story of Stanley’s life;
    a poor Welsh boy; a work-house pupil; teaching school; a sailor
    boy; in a New Orleans counting-house; an adopted child; bereft
    and penniless; a soldier of the South; captured and a prisoner;
    in the Federal Navy; the brilliant correspondent; love of travel
    and adventure; dauntless amid danger; in Asia-Minor and Abyssinia;
    at the court of Spain; in search of Livingstone; at Ujiji on
    Tanganyika; the lost found; across the “dark continent;” down the
    dashing Congo; boldest of all marches; acclaim of the world.

  THE CONGO FREE STATE,                                             27

A Congo’s empire; Stanley’s grand conception; European ambitions; the
    International Association; Stanley off for Zanzibar; enlists his
    carriers; at the mouth of the Congo; preparing to ascend the river;
    his force and equipments; the river and river towns; hippopotamus
    hunting; the big chiefs of Vivi; the “rock-breaker;” founding
    stations; making treaties; tribal characteristics; Congo scenes;
    elephants, buffaloes and water-buck; building houses and planting
    gardens; making roads; rounding the portages; river crocodiles and
    the steamers; foraging in the wilderness; products of the country;
    the king and the gong; no more war fetish; above the cataracts;
    Stanley Pool and Leopoldville; comparison of Congo with other
    rivers; exploration of the Kwa; Stanley sick; his return to Europe;
    further plans for his “Free State;” again on the Congo; Bolobo and
    its chiefs; medicine for wealth; a free river, but no land; scenery
    on the upper Congo; the Watwa dwarfs; the lion and his prey; war
    at Bolobo; the Equator station; a long voyage ahead; a modern
    Hercules; tropical scenes; a trick with a tiger skin; hostile
    natives; a canoe brigade; the Aruwimi; ravages of slave traders;
    captive women and children; to Stanley Falls; the cataracts;
    appointing a chief; the people and products; wreck of a steamer; a
    horrible massacre; down the Congo to Stanley Pool; again at Bolobo;
    a burnt station; news from missionaries; at Leopoldville; down to
    Vivi; the treaties with chiefs; treaty districts; the Camaroon
    country; oil river region; Stanley’s return to London; opinions
    of African life; thirst for rum; adventures and accidents; advice
    to adventurers; outlines of the Congo Free State; its wealth and
    productions; commercial value; the Berlin conference; national
    jurisdiction; constitution of the Congo Free States; results.

  THE SEARCH FOR EMIN,                                             139

Stanley’s call; the Belgian king; the Emin Pasha relief committee;
    Stanley in charge of the expedition; off for Central Africa;
    rounding the cataracts; the rendezvous at Stanley Pool; who
    is Emin? his life and character; a favorite of Gordon; fall
    of Khartoum; Emin cut off in equatorial Soudan; rising of the
    Mahdi; death of Gordon; Emin lost in his equatorial province; his
    capitals and country; Stanley pushes to the Aruwimi; Tippoo Tib
    and his promises; Barttelot and the camps; trip up the Aruwimi;
    wanderings in the forest; battles with the dwarfs; sickness,
    starvation and death; lost in the wilds; the plains at last; grass
    and banana plantations; arrival at Albert Nyanza; no word of Emin;
    back to the Aruwimi for boats; another journey to the lake; Emin
    found; tantalizing consultations; Stanley leaves for his forest
    stations; treachery of Tippoo Tib; massacre of Barttelot; the
    Mahdi influence; again for the Lake to save Emin; willing to leave
    Africa; the start for Zanzibar; hardships of the trip; safe arrival
    at Zanzibar; accident to Emin; the world’s applause; Stanley a

  EGYPT AND THE NILE,                                              185

Shaking hands at Ujiji; Africa a wonderland; Mizriam and Ham; Egypt
    a gateway; mother of literature, art and religion; the Jews
    and Egypt; mouths of the Nile; the Rosetta stone; Suez Canal;
    Alexandria; Pharos, a “wonder of the world;” Cleopatra’s needles;
    Pompey’s Pillar; the catacombs; up the Nile to Cairo; description
    of Cairo; Memphis; the Pyramids and Sphinx; convent of the pulley;
    Abydos its magnificent ruins; City of “the Hundred Gates;” temple
    of Luxor; statues of Memnon; the palace temple of Thebes; the
    old Theban Kings; how they built; ruins of Karnak; most imposing
    in the world; temples of Central Thebes; wonderful temple of
    Edfou; the Island of Philæ; the elephantine ruins; grand ruins of
    Ipsambul; Nubian ruins; rock tomb at Beni-Hassan; the weird “caves
    of the crocodiles;” horrid death of a traveler; Colonel and Lady
    Baker; from Kartoum to Gondokoro; hardships of a Nile expedition;
    the “forty thieves;” Sudd on the White Nile; adventures with
    hippopotami; mobbing a crocodile; rescuing slaves; at Gondokoro;
    horrors of the situation; battles with the natives; night attack;
    hunting elephants; instincts of the animal; natural scenery;
    different native tribes; cruelty of slave-hunters; ambuscades;
    annexing the country; hunting adventures; the Madhi’s rebellion;
    death of Gordon.

  SOURCES OF THE NILE,                                             257

African mysteries; early adventures; the wonderful lake regions;
    excitement over discovery; disputed points; the wish of emperors;
    journey through the desert; Baker and Mrs. Baker; M’dslle
    Tinne; Nile waters and vegetation; dangers of exploration; from
    Gondokoro to Albert Nyanza, native chiefs and races; traits and
    adventure; discovery of Albert Nyanza; King Kamrasi; his royal
    pranks; adventures on the lake; a true Nile source; Murchison
    Falls; revelations by Speke and Grant; Victoria Nyanza; another
    Nile source; Stanley on the scene; his manner of travel; trip
    to Victoria Nyanza; voyage of the “Lady Alice;” adventures on
    the lake; King Mtesa and his empire; wonders of the great lake;
    surprises for Stanley; in battle for King Mtesa; results of
    his discoveries; native traditions; demons and dwarfs; off for

  THE ZAMBESI,                                                     331

Livingstone on the scene; how he got into Africa; his early adventures
    and trials; wounded by a lion; his marriage; off for Lake Ngam;
    among the Makololo; down the Chobe to the Zambesi; up the Zambesi;
    across the Continent to Loanda; discovery of Lake Dilolo;
    importance of the discovery; description of the lake; its wonderful
    animals; methods of African travel; rain-makers and witchcraft;
    the magic lantern scene; animals of the Zambesi; country, people
    and productions; adventures among the rapids; the Gouye Falls; the
    burning desert and Cuando river; an elephant hunt; the wonderful
    Victoria Falls; sounding smoke; the Charka wars; lower Zambesi
    valley; wonderful animal and vegetable growth; mighty affluents;
    escape from a buffalo; slave hunters; Shire river and Lake Nyassa;
    peculiar native head-dresses; native games, manners and customs;
    Pinto at Victoria Falls; central salt pans.

  THE CONGO,                                                       367

Discovery of the wonderful Lake Tanganyika; Burton and Speke’s visit;
    Livingstone’s trials; his geographical delusions; gorilla and
    chimpanzee; Livingstone at Bangweola; on the Lualaba; hunting
    the soko; thrilling adventure with a leopard; the Nyangwe
    people; struggle back to Ujiji; meeting with Stanley; joy in the
    wilderness; exploration of Tanganyika; the parting; Livingstone’s
    last journey; amid rain and swamps; close of his career; death of
    the explorer; care of his body; faithful natives; Stanley’s second
    visit; what he had done; strikes the Lualaba; descends in the
    “Lady Alice;” fights with the natives; ambuscades and strategies;
    boating amid rapids; thrilling adventures amid falls and cataracts;
    wonderful streams; the Lualaba is the Congo; joy over the
    discovery; gauntlet of arrows and spears; loss of men and boats:
    death of Frank Pocock; the falls become too formidable; overland
    to the Atlantic; at the mouth of the mighty Congo; return trip to
    Zanzibar; the Congo empire; Stanley’s future plans.

  CAPE OF STORMS,                                                  416

Discovery of the Cape; early settlers; table mountain; Hottentot
    and Boer; the diamond regions; the Zulu warriors; the Pacific
    republics; natal and the transvaal; manners, customs, animals and
    sports; climate and resources.

  NYASSALAND,                                                      423

A disputed possession; the beautiful Shiré; rapids and cataracts;
    mountain fringed valleys; rank tropical vegetation; magnificent
    upland scenery; thrifty and ingenious natives; cotton and sorghum;
    the Go-Nakeds; beer and smoke; geese, ducks and waterfowls; Lake
    Shirwa; the Blantyre mission; the Manganja highlands; a village
    scene; native honesty; discovery of Lake Nyassa; description of
    the Lake; lofty mountain ranges; Livingstone’s impressions; Mazitu
    and Zulu; native arms, dresses and customs; slave-hunting Arabs;
    slave caravans; population about Nyassa; storms on the lake; the
    first steamer; clouds of “Kungo” flies; elephant herds; charge of
    an elephant bull; exciting sport; African and Asiatic elephants;
    the Scottish mission stations; great wealth of Nyassaland; value to
    commerce; the English and Portuguese claims.

  AFRICAN RESOURCES,                                               441

African coasts and mysteries; Negroland of the school-books; how to
    study Africa; a vast peninsula; the coast rind; central plateaus
    and mountain ranges; Stanley’s last discoveries; a field for
    naturalists; bird and insect life; wild and weird nature; vast
    area; incomputable population; types of African races; distribution
    of races; African languages; character of the human element;
    Africa and revelation; tribes of dwarfs; “Africa in a Nutshell”;
    various political divisions; variety of products; steamships and
    commerce; as an agricultural field; the lake systems; immense
    water-ways; internal improvements; Stanley’s observations; features
    of Equatorial Africa; extent of the Congo basin; the Zambesi and
    Nile systems; the geographical sections of the Congo system; the
    coast section; cataracts, mountains and plains; affluents of the
    great Congo; tribes of lower Congo; length of steam navigation;
    future pasture grounds of the world; the Niam-Niam and Dinka
    countries; empire of Tippoo Tib; richness of vegetable productions;
    varieties of animal life; immense forests and gigantic wild
    beasts; oils, gums and dyes; hides, furs, wax and ivory; iron,
    copper, and other minerals; the cereals, cotton, spices and garden
    vegetables; the labor and human resources; humanitarian and
    commercial problems; the Lualaba section; size, population and
    characteristics; navigable waters; Livingstone’s observations;
    tracing his footsteps; animal and vegetable life; stirring scenes
    and incidents; the Manyuema country; Lakes Moero and Bangweola;
    resources of forest and stream; climate and soil; a remarkable
    land; customs of natives; village architecture; river systems and
    watersheds; Stanley and Livingstone in the centre of the Continent;
    the Chambesi section; head-rivers of the Congo; the Tanganyika
    system; owners of the Congo basin; Stanley’s resume of African
    resources; a glowing picture.

  THE WHITE MAN IN AFRICA,                                         526

Egyptian and Roman Colonists; Moorish invasion; Portugese advent; the
    commercial and missionary approach; triumphs of late explorers;
    can the white man live in Africa?; colonizing and civilizing;
    Stanley’s personal experience; he has opened a momentous problem;
    Stanley’s melancholy chapters; effect of wine and beer; the white
    man must not drink in Africa; must change and re-adapt his habits;
    visions of the colonists; effect of climate; kind of dress to wear;
    the best house to build; how to work and eat; when to travel;
    absurdities of strangers; following native examples; true rules of
    conduct; Stanley’s laws of health; African cold worse than African
    heat; guarding against fatigue; Dr. Martins code of health; the
    white man can live in Africa; future of the white races in the
    tropics; the struggle of foreign powers; missionary struggles;
    political and commercial outlook.

  MISSIONARY WORK IN AFRICA,                                       565

Africa for the Christian; Mohammedan influences; Catholic missions;
    traveler and missionary; the great revival following Stanley’s
    discoveries; Livingstone’s work; perils of missionary life;
    history of missionary effort; the Moors of the North; Abyssinian
    Christians; west-coast missions; various missionary societies;
    character of their work; Bishop Taylor’s wonderful work in Liberia,
    on the Congo, in Angola; nature of his plans; self-supporting
    churches; outline of his work; mission houses and farms; vivid
    descriptions and interesting letters; cheering reports from
    pioneers; South African missions; opening Bechuana-land; the
    Moffats and Coillards; Livingstone and McKenzie; the Nyassa
    missions; on Tanganyika; the Church in Uganda; murder of
    Harrington; the gospel on the east coast; Arabs as enemies;
    religious ideas of Africans; rites and superstitions; fetish and
    devil worship; importance of the mission field; sowing the seed;
    gathering the harvest.

  AFRICA’S LIGHTS AND SHADOWS,                                     735

Arnot’s idea of Central Africa; killed by an elephant; the puff adder;
    the Kasai region; bulls for horses; a Congo hero; affection for
    mothers; caught by a crocodile; decline of the slave trade; the
    natives learning; books in native tongues; natives as laborers;
    understanding of the climate; Stanley on the Gombe; the leopard and
    spring-bock; habits of the antelope; Christian heroes in Africa;
    the boiling pot ordeal; adventures of a slave; Arab cruelties; a
    lion hunt; Mohammedan influence; a victim of superstition; Hervic
    women; Tataka mission in Liberia; a native war dance; African game
    laws; Viva on the Congo; rum in Africa; palavering; Emin Pasha at
    Zanzibar; the Sas-town tribes; an interrupted journey; in Monrovia;
    a sample sermon; the scramble for Africa; lions pulling down a
    giraffe; Kilimanjars, highest mountains in Africa; the Kru-coast
    Missions; a desperate situation; Henry M. Stanley and Emin Pasha;
    comparison of the two pioneers. pp. 800.

                         LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.


      COLORED PLATE                                       FRONTISPIECE
  MARCHING THROUGH EQUATORIAL AFRICA                                 4
  MAP OF CENTRAL AFRICA                                      16 and 17
  HENRY M. STANLEY                                                  18
  THE BELLOWING HIPPOPOTAMI                                         23
  SCENE ON LAKE TANGANYIKA                                          29
  GATHERING TO MARKET AT NYANGWE                                    31
  A SLAVE-STEALER’S REVENGE                                         34
  BUFFALO AT BAY                                                    38
  FIGHT WITH AN ENRAGED HIPPOPOTAMUS                                40
  ROUNDING A PORTAGE                                                44
  A NARROW ESCAPE                                                   45
  WHITE-COLLARED FISH-EAGLES                                        48
  A TEMPORARY CROSSING                                              49
  WEAVER-BIRDS’ NESTS                                               51
  NATIVES’ CURIOSITY AT SIGHT OF A WHITE MAN                        56
  CAPTURING A CROCODILE                                             58
  LIONS DRAGGING DOWN A BUFFALO                                     62
  A FUNERAL DANCE                                                   66
  STANLEY’S FIGHT WITH BENGALA IN 1877                              67
  AFRICAN BLACK-SMITHS                                              71
  AFRICAN HEADDRESSES                                               72
  ORNAMENTED SMOKING PIPE                                           75
  NIAM-NIAM HAMLET ON THE DIAMOONOO                                 76
  NIAM-NIAM MINSTREL                                                79
  NIAM-NIAM WARRIORS                                                79
  RECEIVING THE BRIDE                                               81
  A BONGO CONCERT                                                   82
  THE MASSACRE AT NYANGWE                                           90
  RECEPTION BY AN AFRICAN KING                                      99
  SACRIFICE OF SLAVES, COLORED PLATE                               100
  HENRY M. STANLEY. From a Late Portrait                           138
  EMIN PASHA IN HIS TENT                                           142
  NIAM-NIAM VILLAGE                                                146
  CUTTING WOOD AT NIGHT FOR THE STEAMERS                           149
  AN AMBUSCADE                                                     151
  ELEPHANTS DESTROYING VEGETATION                                  157
  THE CAPTURED BUFFALO                                             159
  AFRICAN WARRIORS                                                 159
  ATTACK ON THE ENCAMPMENT                                         161
  BEGINNING A HUT                                                  164
  STANLEY’S FIRST SIGHT OF EMIN’S STEAMER                          165
  THE SECOND STAGE                                                 165
  HUT COMPLETED IN AN HOUR                                         166
  SLAVE MARKET                                                     180
  LIVINGSTONE AND STANLEY                                          185
  THE ROSETTA STONE                                                188
  DE LESSEPS                                                       190
  CLEOPATRA                                                        191
  PHAROS LIGHT                                                     192
  ALEXANDER, THE GREAT                                             193
  CLEOPATRA’S NEEDLE                                               193
  THE SERAPEION                                                    195
  EGYPTIAN GOD                                                     196
  ROMAN CATACOMBS                                                  196
  MASSACRE OF MAMELUKES                                            199
  VEILED BEAUTY                                                    200
  PYRAMIDS OF EGYPT                                                203
  INTERIOR OF GREAT PYRAMID                                        204
  THE SPHINX                                                       206
  STATUES OF MEMNON                                                210
  RUINS IN THEBES                                                  211
  OBELISK OF KARNAK                                                213
  SPHINX OF KARNAK                                                 214
  GATEWAY AT KARNAK                                                215
  A MUMMY                                                          216
  TEMPLE AT EDFOU                                                  217
  ISIS ON PHILÆ                                                    218
  TEMPLE COURT, PHILÆ                                              220
  TEMPLE AT IPSAMBUL                                               221
  TEMPLE OF OSIRIS                                                 222
  TEMPLE OF ATHOR                                                  224
  ROCK TOMB OF BENI-HASSAN                                         226
  EGYPTIAN BRICK FIELD                                             227
  GROTTOES OF SAMOUN                                               228
  A CHIEF’S WIFE                                                   231
  THE “FORTY THIEVES”                                              232
  MOBBING A CROCODILE                                              234
  RELEASING SLAVES                                                 236
  ATTACKED BY A HIPPOPOTAMUS                                       237
  A SOUDAN WARRIOR                                                 239
  A NIGHT ATTACK                                                   241
  ELEPHANTS IN TROUBLE                                             242
  SHAKING FRUIT                                                    244
  TABLE ROCK                                                       245
  NATIVE DANCE                                                     246
  ATTACK BY AMBUSCADE                                              248
  HUNTING WITH FIRE                                                251
  RESULTS OF FREEDOM                                               251
  GORDON AS MANDARIN                                               253
  PORTRAIT OF GORDON                                               256
  PORTRAIT OF COLONEL BAKER                                        266
  MAD’MLLE TINNE                                                   268
  LADY BAKER                                                       270
  SLAVE HUNTER’S VICTIM’S                                          271
  WHITE NILE SWAMPS                                                274
  CROSSING A SPONGE                                                276
  PREPARING TO START                                               279
  A ROYAL JOURNEY                                                  291
  MURCHISON FALLS                                                  298
  HENRY M. STANLEY                                                 303
  STANLEY ON THE MARCH                                             304
  RUBAGA                                                           314
  SHOOTING A RHINOCEROS                                            328
  LIVINGSTONE                                                      330
  LION ATTACKS LIVINGSTONE                                         333
  CUTTING A ROAD                                                   334
  A BANYAN TREE                                                    338
  ANIMALS ON THE ZAMBESI                                           343
  THE GONYE FALLS                                                  344
  HUNTING THE ELEPHANT                                             345
  IN THE RAPIDS                                                    348
  VICTORIA FALLS                                                   351
  CHARGE OF A BUFFALO                                              355
  NATIVE SLAVE HUNTERS                                             356
  HUAMBO MAN AND WOMAN                                             359
  SAMBO WOMAN                                                      359
  GANGUELA WOMEN                                                   359
  BIHE HEAD DRESS                                                  361
  QUIMBANDE GIRLS                                                  361
  CUBANGO HEAD-DRESS                                               361
  LUCHAZE WOMAN                                                    362
  AMBUELLA WOMAN                                                   362
  SOVA DANCE                                                       363
  FORDING THE CUCHIBI                                              363
  VICTORIA FALLS (BELOW)                                           365
  ON TANGANYIKA                                                    368
  ANT HILL                                                         371
  GORILLAS                                                         371
  A SOKO HUNT                                                      374
  A DANGEROUS PRIZE                                                375
  NYANGWE MARKET                                                   378
  STANLEY AT TANGANYIKA                                            380
  STANLEY MEETS LIVINGSTONE                                        381
  AFLOAT ON TANGANYIKA                                             382
  DEEP-WATER FORDING                                               386
  LAST DAY’S MARCH                                                 388
  DEATH OF LIVINGSTONE                                             389
  THE KING’S MAGICIANS                                             390
  A WEIR BRIDGE                                                    395
  FIGHTING HIS WAY                                                 398
  RESCUE OF ZAIDI                                                  403
  ATTACK BY THE BANGALA                                            405
  IN THE CONGO RAPIDS                                              408
  DEATH OF FRANK POCOCK                                            411
  ZULUS                                                            418
  MY CATTLE WERE SAVED                                             420
  BUFFALO HUNTERS                                                  421
  VILLAGE SCENE ON LAKE NYASSA                                     426
  STORM ON LAKE NYASSA                                             434
  AN ELEPHANT CHARGE                                               436
  NATIVE HUNTERS KILLING SOKOS                                     446
  AFRICAN ANT-EATER                                                446
  QUICHOBO                                                         446
  THE “DEVIL OF THE ROAD,” ETC.                                    450
  BUSH-BUCKS                                                       450
  NATIVE TYPES OF SOUTHERN SOUDAN                                  451
  BARI OF GONDOKORO                                                453
  CHASING GIRAFFES                                                 457
  NATIVE RAT-TRAP                                                  463
  AFRICAN HATCHET                                                  464
  NATIVES RUNNING TO WAR                                           466
  UMBANGI BLACKSMITHS                                              469
  NATIVES KILLING AN ELEPHANT                                      472
  ON A JOURNEY IN THE KALAHARI DESERT                              480
  WOMEN CARRIERS                                                   481
  DRIVING GAME INTO THE HOPO                                       483
  PIT AT END OF HOPO                                               483
  CAPSIZED BY A HIPPOPOTAMUS                                       487
  HUNTER’S PARADISE                                                488
  BATLAPIN BOYS THROWING THE KIRI                                  492
  PURSUIT OF THE WILD BOAR                                         492
  RAIDING THE CATTLE SUPPLY                                        494
  HUNTING ZEBRAS                                                   497
  DANGEROUS FORDING                                                503
  A YOUNG SOKO                                                     506
  MANYUEMA WOMEN                                                   510
  TYPES OF AFRICAN ANTELOPES                                       515
  BINKA CATTLE HERD                                                518
  AFRICAN RHINOCEROS                                               534
  ELEPHANT UPROOTING A TREE                                        540
  COL. BAKER’S WAY OF REACHING BERBER                              553
  AFRICA METHODIST CONFERENCE                                      564
  CHUMA AND SUSI                                                   568
  KING LOBOSSI                                                     568
  WEST AFRICAN MUSSULMAN                                           579
  AN AFRICAN CHIEF                                                 587
  PORT AND TOWN OF ELMINA                                          592
  COOMASSIE, THE CAPITAL OF ASHANTI                                594
  CANOE TRAVEL ON THE NIGER                                        598
  MAP OF LIBERIA                                                   604
  METHODIST PARSONAGE OF AFRICA                                    606
  AFRICAN VILLAGE AND PALAVER TREE                                 611
  ST. PAUL DE LOANDA                                               618
  FOREST SCENE IN ANGOLA                                           621
  MUNDOMBES AND HUTS                                               626
  NATIVE GRASS-HOUSE ON THE CONGO                                  629
  SOME OF BISHOP TAYLOR’S MISSIONARIES                             635
  GARAWAY MISSION HOUSE                                            643
  MAP OF ANGOLA                                                    647
  STEAM WAGONS FOR HAULING AT VIVI                                 659
  REED DANCE BY MOONLIGHT                                          676
  MISSION HOUSE AT VIVI                                            692
  HUNTING THE GEMBOCK                                              696
  BISHOP TAYLOR’S MISSIONS                                         699
  A NATIVE WARRIOR                                                 706
  THE COILLARD CAMP                                                709
  AT HOME AFTER THE HUNT                                           711
  MOFFAT INSTITUTION——KURUMAN                                      713
  MOFFAT’S COURAGE                                                 715
  NATIVES OF LARI AND MADI IN CAMP AT SHOO                         719
  TINDER-BOX, FLINT AND STEEL                                      726
  A CARAVAN BOUND FOR THE INTERIOR                                 728
  TRAVEL ON BULL-BACK AND NATIVE ESCORT                            739
  LEOPARD ATTACKING A SPRINGBOCK                                   747
  A LION HUNT                                                      757
  NATIVE WAR DANCE                                                 764
  BUFFALO DEFENDING HER YOUNG                                      770
  SEKHOMS AND HIS COUNSEL                                          774
  AN INTERRUPTED JOURNEY                                           779
  LIONS PULLIN DOWN A GIRAFFE                                      786
  HUNTING LIONS                                                    794
  A DESPERATE SITUATION                                            797
  DINING ON THE BANKS OF THE SHIRE                                 800


[Illustration: HENRY M. STANLEY.]

                           HENRY M. STANLEY.

The news rang through the world that Stanley was safe. For more than a
year he had been given up as lost in African wilds by all but the most
hopeful. Even hope had nothing to rest upon save the dreamy thought that
he, whom hardship and danger had so often assailed in vain, would again
come out victorious.

The mission of Henry M. Stanley to find, succor and rescue Emin Pasha,
if he were yet alive, not only adds to the life of this persistent
explorer and wonderful adventurer one of its most eventful and thrilling
chapters, but throws more light on the Central African situation than
any event in connection with the discovery and occupation of the coveted
areas which lie beneath the equatorial sun. Its culmination, both in the
escape of the hero himself and in the success of his perilous errand,
to say nothing of its far-reaching effects upon the future of “The
Dark Continent,” opens, as it were, a new volume in African annals,
and presents a new point of departure for scientists, statesmen and

Space must be found further on for the details of that long, exciting
and dangerous journey, which reversed all other tracks of African
travel, yet redounded more than all to the glory of the explorer and the
advancement of knowledge respecting hidden latitudes. But here we can get
a fair view of a situation, which in all its lights and shadows, in its
many startling outlines, in its awful suggestion of possibilities, is
perhaps the most interesting and fateful now before the eyes of modern

It may be very properly asked, at the start, who is this wizard of
travel, this dashing adventurer, this heroic explorer and rescuer, this
pioneer of discovery, who goes about in dark, unfathomed places, defying
flood and climate, jungle and forest, wild beast and merciless savage,
and bearing a seemingly charmed life?

Who is this genius who has in a decade revolutionized all ancient methods
of piercing the heart of the unknown, and of revealing the mysteries
which nature has persistently hugged since “the morning stars first sang
together in joy?”

The story of his life may be condensed into a brief space——brief yet
eventful as that of a conqueror, moved ever to conquest by sight of new
worlds. Henry M. Stanley was born in the hamlet of Denbigh, in Wales,
in 1840. His parents, who bore the name of Rowland, were poor; so poor,
indeed, that the boy, at the age of three years, was virtually on the
town. At the age of thirteen, he was turned out of the poor-house to
shift for himself. Fortunately, a part of the discipline had been such
as to assure him the elements of an English education. The boy must have
improved himself beyond the opportunities there at hand, for in two or
three years afterwards, he appeared in North Wales as a school-teacher.
Thence he drifted to Liverpool, where he shipped as a cabin-boy on a
sailing-vessel, bound for New Orleans. Here he drifted about in search
of employment till he happened upon a merchant and benefactor, by the
name of Stanley. The boy proved so bright, promising and useful, that his
employer adopted him as his son. Thus the struggling John Rowland became,
by adoption, the Henry M. Stanley of our narrative.

Before he came of age, the new father died without a will, and his
business and estate passed away from the foster child to those entitled
at law. But for this misfortune, or rather great good fortune, he might
have been lost to the world in the counting-room of a commercial city.
He was at large on the world again, full of enterprise and the spirit of

The civil war was now on, and Stanley entered the Confederate army. He
was captured by the Federal forces, and on being set at liberty threw his
fortunes in with his captors by joining the Federal navy, the ship being
the Ticonderoga, on which he was soon promoted to the position of Acting
Ensign. After the war, he developed those powers which made him such an
acquisition on influential newspapers. He was of genial disposition,
bright intelligence, quick observation and surprising discrimination. His
judgment of men and things was sound. He loved travel and adventure, was
undaunted in the presence of obstacles, persistent in every task before
him, and possessed shrewd insight into human character and projects. His
pen was versatile and his style adapted to the popular taste. No man
was ever better equipped by nature to go anywhere and make the most of
every situation. In a single year he had made himself a reputation by his
trip through Asia Minor and other Eastern countries. In 1866 he was sent
by the _New York Herald_, as war correspondent, to Abyssinia. The next
year he was sent to Spain by the same paper, to write up the threatened
rebellion there. In 1869 he was sent by the _Herald_ to Africa to find
the lost Livingstone.

A full account of this perilous journey will be found elsewhere in this
volume, in connection with the now historic efforts of that gallant band
of African pioneers who immortalized themselves prior to the founding
of the Congo Free State. Suffice it to say here, that it took him two
years to find Livingstone at Ujiji, upon the great lake of Tanganyika,
which lake he explored, in connection with Livingstone, and at the same
time made important visits to most of the powerful tribes that surround
it. He returned to civilization, but remained only a short while, for by
1874 he was again in the unknown wilds, and this time on that celebrated
journey which brought him entirely across the Continent from East to
West, revealed the wonderful water resources of tropical Africa and gave
a place on the map to that remarkable drainage system which finds its
outlet in the Congo river.

Says the Rev. Geo. L. Taylor of this march: “It was an undertaking which,
for grandeur of conception, and for sagacity, vigor, and completeness
of execution, must ever rank among the marches of the greatest generals
and the triumphs of the greatest discoverers of history. No reader can
mentally measure and classify this exploit who does not recall the
prolonged struggles that have attended the exploration of all great
first-class rivers——a far more difficult work, in many respects, than
ocean sailing. We must remember the wonders and sufferings of Orellana’s
voyages (though in a brigantine, built on the Rio Napo, and with armed
soldiers) down that “Mediterranean of Brazil,” the Amazon, from the Andes
to the Atlantic, in 1540. We must recall the voyage of Marquette and
Joliet down the Mississippi in 1673; the toils of Park and Landers on
the Niger, 1795-1830; and of Speke and Baker on the Nile, 1860-1864, if
we would see how the deed of Stanley surpasses them all in boldness and
generalship, as it promises also to surpass them in immediate results.

The object of the voyage was two-fold: first, to finish the work of Speke
and Grant in exploring the great Nile lakes; and, secondly, to strike the
great Lualaba where Livingstone left it, and follow it to whatever sea or
ocean it might lead.”

And again:——“The story of the descent of the great river is an Iliad in
itself. Through hunger and weariness; through fever, dysentery, poisoned
arrows, and small-pox; through bellowing hippopotami, crocodiles,
and monsters; past mighty tributaries, themselves great first-class
rivers; down roaring rapids, whirlpools, and cataracts; through great
canoe-fleets of saw-teethed, fighting, gnashing cannibals fiercer than
tigers; through thirty-two battles on land and river, often against
hundreds of great canoes, some of them ninety feet long and with a
hundred spears on board; and, at last, through the last fearful journey
by land and water down the tremendous cañon below Stanley Pool, still
they went on, and on, relentlessly on, till finally they got within
hailing and helping distance of Boma, on the vast estuary by the sea; and
on August 9, 1877, the news thrilled the civilized world that Stanley
was saved, and had connected Livingstone’s Lualaba with Tuckey’s Congo!
After 7,000 miles’ wanderings in 1,000 days save one from Zanzibar, and
four times crossing the Equator, he looked white men in the face once
more, and was startled that they were so pale! Black had become the
normal color of the human face. Thus the central stream of the second
vastest river on the globe, next to the Amazon in magnitude, was at last
explored, and a new and unsuspected realm was disclosed in the interior
of a prehistoric continent, itself the oldest cradle of civilization.
The delusions of ages were swept away at one masterful stroke, and a new
world was discovered by a new Columbus in a canoe.”


It was on that memorable march that he came across the wily Arab, Tippoo
Tib, at the flourishing market-town of Nyangwe, who was of so much
service to Stanley on his descent of the Lualaba (Congo) from Nyangwe to
Stanley Falls, 1,000 miles from Stanley Pool, but who has since figured
in rather an unenviable light in connection with efforts to introduce
rays of civilization into the fastnesses of the Upper Congo. This, as
well as previous journeys of Stanley, established the fact that the old
method of approaching the heart of the Continent by desert coursers,
or of threading its hostile mazes without armed help, was neither
expeditious nor prudent. It revolutionized exploration, by compelling
respect from hostile man and guaranteeing immunity from attack by wild

For nearly three years Stanley was lost to the civilized world in this
trans-continental journey. Its details, too, are narrated elsewhere in
this volume, with all its vicissitude of 7,000 miles of zigzag wandering
and his final arrival on the Atlantic coast——the wonder of all explorers,
the admired of the scientific world.

Such was the value of the information he brought to light in this
eventful journey, such the wonderful resource of the country through
which he passed after plunging into the depths westward of Lake
Tanganyika, and such the desirability of this new and western approach
to the heart of the continent, not only for commercial but political
and humanitarian purposes, that the cupidity of the various colonizing
nations, especially of Europe, was instantly awakened, and it was seen
that unless proper steps were taken, there must soon be a struggle for
the possession of a territory so vast and with such possibilities of
empire. To obviate a calamity so dire as this, the happy scheme was hit
upon to carve out of as much of the new discovered territory as would be
likely to embrace the waters of the Congo and control its ocean outlet, a
mighty State which was to be dedicated for ever to the civilized nations
of the world.

In it there should be no clash of foreign interests, but perfect
reciprocity of trade and free scope for individual or corporate
enterprise without respect to nationality. The king of Belgium took a
keen interest in the project, and through his influence other powers
of Europe, and even the United States, became enlisted. A plan of
the proposed State was drafted and it soon received international
ratification. The new power was to be known as the Congo Free State,
and it was to be, for the time being, under control of an Administrator
General. To the work of founding this State, giving it metes and bounds,
securing its recognition among the nations, removing obstacles to its
approach, establishing trading posts and developing its commercial
features, Stanley now addressed himself. We have been made familiar with
his plans for securing railway communication between the mouth of the
Congo and Stanley Pool, a distance of nearly 200 miles inland, so as to
overcome the difficult, if not impossible, navigation of the swiftly
rushing river. We have also heard of his successful efforts to introduce
navigation, by means of steamboats, upon the more placid waters of the
Upper Congo and upon its numerous affluents. Up until the year 1886, the
most of his time was devoted to fixing the infant empire permanently on
the map of tropical Africa and giving it identity among the political and
industrial powers of earth.

In reading of Stanley and studying the characteristics of his work one
naturally gravitates to the thought, that in all things respecting him,
the older countries of Europe are indebted to the genius of the newer
American institution. We cannot yet count upon the direct advantages of
a civilized Africa upon America. In a political and commercial sense our
activity cannot be equal to that of Europe on account of our remoteness,
and because we are, as yet, but little more than colonists ourselves.
Africa underlies Europe, is contiguous to it, is by nature situated so
as to become an essential part of that mighty earth-tract which the sun
of civilization is, sooner or later, to illuminate. Besides Europe has
a need for African acquisition and settlement which America has not.
Her areas are small, her population has long since reached the point
of overflow, her money is abundant and anxious for inviting foreign
outlets, her manufacturing centres must have new cotton and jute fields,
not to mention supplies of raw material of a thousand kinds, her crowded
establishments must have the cereal foods, add to all these the love
of empire which like a second nature with monarchical rulers, and the
desire for large landed estates which is a characteristic of titled
nobility, and you have a few of the inducements to African conquest and
colonization which throw Europe in the foreground. Yet while all these
are true, it is doubtful if, with all her advantages of wealth, location
and resource, she has done as much for the evangelization of Africa as
has America. No, nor as much for the systematic and scientific opening
of its material secrets. And this brings us to the initial idea of this
paragraph again. Though Stanley was a foreign waif, cast by adverse
circumstances on our shores, it seemed to require the robust freedom
and stimulating opportunities of republican institutions to awaken and
develop in him the qualities of the strong practical and venturesome
man he became. Monarchy may not fetter thought, but it does restrain
actions. It grooves and ruts human energy by laws of custom and by
arbitrary rules of caste. It would have repressed a man like Stanley, or
limited him to its methods. He would have been a subject of some dynasty
or a victim of some conventionalism. Or if he had grown too large for
repressive boundaries and had chosen to burst them, he would have become
a revolutionist worthy of exile, if his head had not already come to
the block. But under republican institutions his energies and ambitions
had free play. Every faculty, every peculiarity of the man grew and
developed, till he became a strong, original and unique force in the line
of adventure and discovery. This out-crop of manhood and character, is
the tribute of our free institutions to European monarchy. The tribute is
not given grudgingly. Take it and welcome. Use it for your own glory and
aggrandizement. Let crowned-heads bow before it, and titled aristocracy
worship it, as they appropriate its worth and wealth. But let it not be
forgotten, that the American pioneering spirit has opened Africa wider in
ten years than all the efforts of all other nations in twenty.

                           CONGO FREE STATE.

In 1877, Stanley wrote to the London _Daily Telegraph_ as follows:——

“I feel convinced that the question of this mighty water-way (the Congo)
will become a political one in time. As yet, however, no European power
seems to have put forth the right of control. Portugal claims it because
she discovered its mouth; but the great powers, England, America, and
France, refuse to recognize her right. If it were not that I fear to
damp any interest you may have in Africa, or in this magnificent stream,
by the length of my letter, I could show you very strong reasons why it
would be a politic deed to settle this momentous question immediately.
I could prove to you that the power possessing the Congo, despite the
cataracts, would absorb to itself the trade of the whole enormous basin
behind. This river is and will be the grand highway of commerce to West
Central Africa.”

When Stanley wrote this, with visions of a majestic Congo Empire flitting
through his brain, he was more than prophetic; at least, he knew more
of the impulse that was then throbbing and permeating Europe than any
other man. He had met Gambetta, the great French statesman, who in so
many words had told him that he had opened up a new continent to the
world’s view and had given an impulse to scientific and philanthropic
enterprise which could not but have material effect on the progress of
mankind. He knew what the work of the International Association, which
had his plans for a Free State under consideration, had been, up to that
hour, and were likely to be in the future. He was aware of the fact
that the English Baptist missionaries had already pushed their way up
the Congo to a point beyond the Equator, and that the American Baptists
were working side by side with their English brethren. He knew that the
London and Church Missionary Societies had planted their flags on Lakes
Victoria and Tanganyika, and that the work of the Free Kirk of Scotland
was reaching out from Lake Nyassa to Tanganyika. He had seen Pinto and
Weissman crossing Africa and making grand discoveries in the Portuguese
possessions south of the Congo. De Brazza had given France a West African
Empire; Germany had annexed all the vacant territory in South-west
Africa, to say nothing of her East African enterprises; Italy had taken
up the Red Sea coast; Great Britain had possessed the Niger delta;
Portugal already owned 700,000 square miles south of the Congo, to which
no boundaries had been affixed.


Stanley knew even more than this. His heroic nature took no stock in the
“horrible climate” of Africa, which he had tested for so many years. He
was fully persuaded that the plateaus of the Upper Congo and the central
continent were healthier than the lands of Arkansas, which has doubled
its population in twenty-five years. He treated the coast as but a thin
line, the mere shell of an egg, yet he saw it dotted with settlements
along every available water-way——the Kwanza, Congo, Kwilu, Ogowai, Muni,
Camaroon, Oil, Niger, Roquelle, Gambia and Senegal rivers. He asked
himself, What is left? And the answer came——Nothing, except the basins
of the four mighty streams——the Congo, the Nile, the Niger and the
Shari (Shire), all of which require railways to link them with the sea.
His projected railway from Vivi, around the cataracts of the Congo, to
Stanley Pool, 147 miles long, would open nearly 11,000 miles of navigable
water-way, and the trade of 43,000,000 people, worth millions of dollars

The first results of Stanley’s efforts in behalf of a “Free Congo
State” were, as already indicated, the formation of an international
association, whose president was Colonel Strauch, and to whose existence
and management the leading powers of the world gave their assent. It
furnished the means for his return to Africa, with plenty of help and
with facilities for navigating the Congo, in order to establish towns,
conclude treaties with the natives, take possession of the lands, fix
metes and bounds and open commerce——in a word, to found a State according
to his ideal, and firmly fix it among the recognized empires of the

In January, 1879, Stanley started for Africa, under the above auspices
and with the above intent. But instead of sailing to the Congo direct,
he went to Zanzibar on the east coast, for the purpose of enlisting a
force of native pioneers and carriers, aiming as much as possible to
secure those who had accompanied him on his previous trips across the
Continent and down the river, whose ascent he was about to make. Such men
he could trust, besides, their experience would be of great avail in so
perilous an enterprise. A second object of his visit to Zanzibar was to
organize expeditions for the purpose of pushing westward and establishing
permanent posts as far as the Congo. One of these, under Lieut. Cambier,
established a line of posts stretching almost directly westward from
Zanzibar to Nyangwe, and through a friendly country. With this work, and
the enlistment of 68 Zanzibaris for his Congo expedition, three-fourths
of whom had accompanied him across Africa, he was engaged until May,
1879, when he sailed for the Congo, _via_ the Red Sea and Mediterranean,
and arrived at Banana Point at the mouth of the Congo, on Aug. 14, 1879,
as he says, “to ascend the great river with the novel mission of sowing
along its banks civilized settlements, to peacefully conquer and subdue
it, to mold it in harmony with modern ideas into national States, within
whose limits the European merchant shall go hand in hand with the dark
African trader, and justice and law and order shall prevail, and murder
and lawlessness and the cruel barter of slaves shall forever cease.”

Once at Banana Point, all hands trimmed for the tropical heat. Heads
were shorn close, heavy clothing was changed for soft, light flannels,
hats gave place to ventilated caps, the food was changed from meat
to vegetable, liquors gave place to coffee or tea——for be it known a
simple glass of champagne may prove a prelude to a sun-stroke in African
lowlands. The officers of the expedition here met——an international group
indeed,——an American (Stanley), two Englishmen, five Belgians, two Danes,
one Frenchman. The steamer Barga had long since arrived from Europe with
a precious assortment of equipments, among which were building material
and a flotilla of light steam launches. One of these, the _En Avant_
was the first to discover Lake Leopold II, explore the Biyeré and reach
Stanley Falls.


In seven days, August 21st, the expedition was under way, braving the
yellow, giant stream with steel cutters, driven by steam. The river
is three miles wide, from 60 to 900 feet deep, and with a current of
six miles an hour. On either side are dark walls of mangrove and palm,
through which course lazy, unknown creeks, alive only with the slimy
reptilia of the coast sections. For miles the course is through the
serene river flood, fringed by a leafy, yet melancholy nature. Then
a cluster of factories, known as Kissinga, is passed, and the river
is broken into channels by numerous islands, heavily wooded. Only
the deeper channels are now navigable, and selecting the right ones
the fleet arrives at Wood Point, a Dutch trading town, with several
factories. Up to this point, the river has had no depth of less than
16 feet, increased to 22 feet during the rainy season. The mangrove
forests have disappeared, giving place to the statelier palms. Grassy
plains begin to stretch invitingly down to the water’s edge. In the
distance high ridges throw up their serrated outlines, and seemingly
converge toward the river, as a look is taken ahead. Soon the wonderful
Fetish Rocks are sighted, which all pilots approach with dread, either
through superstition or because the deep current is broken by miniature
whirlpools. One of these granite rocks stands on a high elevation and
resembles a light-house. It is the Limbu-Li-Nzambi——“Finger of God”——of
the natives.

Boma is now reached. It is the principal emporium of trade on the
Congo——the buying and selling mart for Banana Point, and connected with
it by steamers. There is nothing picturesque hereabouts, yet Boma has a
history as old as the slave trade in America, and as dark and horrible
as that traffic was infamous. Here congregated the white slave dealers
for over two centuries, and here they gathered the dusky natives by the
thousand, chained them in gangs by the dozen or score, forced them into
the holds of their slave-ships, and carried them away to be sold in the
Brazils, West Indies and North America. Whole fleets of slave-ships
have anchored off Boma, with their loads of rum, their buccaneer crews
and blood-thirsty officers, intent on human booty. Happily, all is now
changed and the Arab is the only recognized slave-stealer in Africa.
Boma has several missions, and her traders are on good terms with the
surrounding tribes. Her market is splendid, and here may be found in
plenty, oranges, citrons, limes, papaws, pine-apples, sweet potatoes,
tomatoes, onions, turnips, cabbage, beets, carrots and lettuce, besides
the meat of bullocks, sheep, goats and fowls.


After establishing a headquarters at Boma, under the auspices of the
International Commission, the expedition proceeded to Mussuko, where
the heavier steamer, Albion, was dismissed, and where all the stores
for future use were collected. This point is 90 miles from the sea.
River reconnoissances were made in the lighter steamers, and besides the
information picked up, the navigators were treated to a hippopotamus hunt
which resulted in the capture of one giant specimen, upon whose back one
of the Danish skippers mounted in triumph, that he might have a thrilling
paragraph for his next letter to Copenhagen.

Above Boma the Congo begins to narrow between verdure-clad hills rising
from 300 to 1100 feet, and navigation becomes more difficult, though
channels of 15 to 20 feet in depth are found. Further on, toward Vivi
is a splendid reach of swift, deep water, with an occasional whirlpool,
capable of floating the largest steamship. Vivi was to be a town founded
under the auspices of the International Commission——an entrepôt for
an extensive country. The site was pointed out by De-de-de, chief of
the contiguous tribe, who seemed to have quite as keen a commercial
eye as his European visitors. Hither were gathered five of the most
powerful chiefs of the vicinity, who were pledged, over draughts of
fresh palm-juice, to recognize the newly established emporium. It is
a salubrious spot, surrounded by high plateaus, affording magnificent
views. From its lofty surroundings one may sketch a future, which shall
abound in well worn turnpike roads, puffing steamers, and columns of busy
trades-people. As Vivi is, the natives are by no means the worst sort of
people. They wear a moderate amount of clothing, take readily to traffic,
keep themselves well supplied with marketing, and use as weapons the old
fashioned flint-lock guns they have secured in trade with Europeans.
At the grand assemblage of chiefs, one of the dusky seniors voiced the
unanimous sentiment thus:——“We, the big chiefs of Vivi are glad to see
the mundelé (trader). If the mundelé has any wish to settle in this
country, as Massala (the interpreter) informs us, we will welcome him,
and will be great friends to him. Let the mundelé speak his mind freely.”

Stanley replied that he was on a mission of peace, that he wanted to
establish a commercial emporium, with the right to make roads to it
and improve the surrounding country, and that he wanted free and safe
intercourse with the people for all who chose to come there. If they
would give guarantees to this effect, he would pay them for the right.
Then began a four hour’s chaffer which resulted in the desired treaty.
Apropos to this deal Stanley says:——“In the management of a bargain I
should back the Congo native against Jew or Christian, Parsee, or Banyan,
in all the round world. I have there seen a child of eight do more tricks
of trade in an hour than the cleverest European trader on the Congo
could do in a month. There is a little boy at Bolobo, aged six, named
Lingeuji, who would make more profit out of a pound’s worth of cloth
than an English boy of fifteen would out of ten pound’s worth. Therefore
when I write of the Congo natives, Bakougo, Byyanzi or Bateke tribes, I
associate them with an inconceivable amount of natural shrewdness and a
power of indomitable and untiring chaffer.”

Thus Vivi was acquired, and Stanley brought thither all his boats and
supplies. He turned all his working force, a hundred in number, to laying
out streets to the top of the plateau, where houses and stores were
erected. The natives rendered assistance and were much interested in the
smashing and removal of the boulders with the heavy sledges. They called
Stanley Bula Matari——Rock Breaker——a title he came to be known by on
the whole line of the Congo, up to Stanley Falls. Gardens were planted,
shade trees were set out, and on January 8, 1880, Stanley wrote home
that he had a site prepared for a city of 20,000 people, at the head
of navigation on the lower Congo, and a center for trade with a large
country, when suitable roads were built. He left it in charge of one of
his own men, as governor, or chief, and started on his tedious and more
perilous journey through the hills and valleys of the cataract region.
This journey led him through various tribes, most of whom lived in neat
villages, and were well supplied with live animals, garden produce and
cotton clothing. They were friendly and disposed to encourage him in
his enterprise of making a good commercial road from Vivi, around the
cataracts, to some suitable station above, provided they were well paid
for the right of way. A melancholy fact in connection with many of these
tribes is that they have been decimated by internecine wars, mostly of
the olden time, when the catching and selling of slaves was a business,
and that thereby extensive tracts of good land have been abandoned to
wild game, elephants, buffaloes, water-buck and antelopes, which breed
and roam at pleasure. It was nothing unusual to see herds of half a dozen
elephants luxuriously spraying their sunburnt backs in friendly pools,
nor to startle whole herds of buffaloes, which would scamper away, with
tails erect, for safety——cowards all, except when wounded and at bay, and
then a very demon, fuller of fight than a tiger and even more dangerous
than the ponderous elephant.

Owing to the fact that the Congo threads its cataract section with
immense falls and through deep gorges, this part of Stanley’s journey
had to be made at some distance from its channel, and with only glimpses
of its turbid waters, over lofty ridges, through deep grass-clothed or
densely forested valleys, and across various tributaries, abounding in
hippopotami and other water animals. Many fine views were had from the
mountains of Ngoma. He decided that a road could be made from Vivi to
Isangila, a distance of 52 miles, and that from Isangila navigation could
be resumed on the Congo. And this road he now proceeded to make, for,
though years before in his descent of the river he had dragged many heavy
canoes for miles overland, and around similar obstructions, he now had
heavier craft to carry, and objects of commerce in view. He had 106 men
at his disposal at Vivi, who fell to work with good will, cutting down
the tall grass, removing boulders, corduroying low grounds, bridging
streams, and carrying on engineering much the same as if they were in a
civilized land——the natives helping when so inclined. The workmen had
their own supplies, which were supplemented by game, found in abundance,
and were molested only by the snakes which were disturbed by the cutting
and digging; of these, the spitting snake was the most dangerous, not
because of its bite, but because it ejects its poison in a stream from
a distance of six feet into the face and eyes of its enemy. The ill
effects of such an injection lasts for a week or more. The tall grass
was infested with the whip-snake, the bulky python was found near the
streams, while a peculiar green snake inhabited the trees of the stony
sections and occasionally dangled in unpleasant proximity to the faces of
the workmen.

[Illustration: BUFFALO AT BAY.]

As this road-making went on, constant communication was kept up with
Vivi. The steamers were mounted on heavy wagons, and were drawn along by
hand-power as the road progressed. Stores and utensils of every kind were
similarly loaded and transported. The mules and asses, belonging to the
expedition, were of course brought into requisition, but in nearly all
cases their strength had to be supplemented by the workmen. Accidents
were not infrequent, but fatal casualties were rare. Some died of
disease, yet the general health was good. One of the coast natives fell
a victim to an enraged hippopotamus, which crushed him and his bark as
readily as an egg-shell.

Thus the road progressed to Makeya Manguba, a distance of 22 miles from
Vivi, and after many tedious trips to and fro, all the equipments of the
expedition were brought to that point. The time consumed had been about
five months——from March to August. Here the steel lighters were brought
into requisition, and the equipments were carried by steam to a new camp
on the Bundi river, where road making was even more difficult, because
the forests were now dense and the woods——mahogany, teak, guaiacum and
bombax——very hard. Fortunately the natives kept up a fine supply of
sweet potatoes, bananas, fowls and eggs, which supplemented the usual
rice diet of the workmen. It was with the greatest hardship that the
road was completed between the Luenda and Lulu rivers, so thick were the
boulders and so hard the material which composed them. The Europeans all
fell sick, and even the natives languished. At length the Bula river was
reached, 16 miles from the Bundi, where the camp was supplied with an
abundance of buffalo and antelope meat.

The way must now go either over the steep declivities of the Ngoma
mountains, or around their jagged edges, where they abut on the roaring
Congo. The latter was chosen, and for days the entire force were engaged
in cutting a roadway along the sides of the bluffs. This completed, a
short stretch of navigable water brought them to Isangila, 52 miles from
Vivi. It was now January 2, 1881. Thither all the supplies were brought,
and the boats were scraped and painted, ready for the long journey to
Manyanga. Stanley estimated that all the goings and comings on this 52
miles of roadway would foot up 2,352 miles of travel; and it had cost the
death of six Europeans and twenty-two natives, besides the retirement
of thirteen invalids. Verily, it was a year dark with trial and unusual
toil. But the cataracts had been overcome, and rest could be had against
further labors and dangers.


The little steel lighters are now ready for their precious loads. In all,
there has been collected at Isangila full fifty tons of freight, besides
wagons and the traveling luggage of 118 colored carriers and attendants
and pioneers. It is a long, long way to Manyanga, but if the river proves
friendly, it ought to be reached in from seventy to eighty days. The
Congo is three-quarters of a mile wide, with rugged shores and tumultuous
currents. The little steamers have to feel their way, hugging the shores
in order to avoid the swift waters of the outer channels, and starting
every now and then with their paddles the drowsy crocodiles from their
habitat. The astonished creatures dart forward, at first, as if to attack
the boats, but of a sudden disappear in the flood, to rise again in the
rear and give furious chase at a distance they deem quite safe. This part
of the river is known as Long Reach. These reaches, or stretches, some
of them five miles long, are expansions of the river, between points of
greater fall, and are more easily navigable than where the stream narrows
or suddenly turns a point. The cañon appearance of the shores now begins
to disappear, and extensive grass-grown plains stretch occasionally to
the water’s edge.

At the camp near Kololo Point, where the river descends swiftly, the
expedition was met by Crudington and Bentley, two missionaries, who were
fleeing in a canoe from the natives of Kinshassa, where they had been
surrounded by an armed mob and threatened with their lives. They were
given protection and sent to Isangila. Stanley had now to mourn the loss
of his most trustworthy messenger, Soudi. He had gone back to Vivi for
the European mail and on the way had met a herd of buffaloes; selecting
the finest, he discharged his rifle at it and killed it, as he thought.
But when he rushed up to cut its jugular vein, the beast arose in
fury, and tossed and mangled poor Soudi so that he died soon after his
companions came to his rescue.

Stretch after stretch of the turbulent Congo is passed, and camp after
camp has been formed and vacated. At all camps, where practicable, the
natives have been taken into confidence, and the intent of the expedition
made known. With hardly an exception they fell into the spirit of the
undertaking, and gladly welcomed the opportunity to open commerce with
the outer world. The Nzambi rapids now offer an obstacle to navigation,
but soon a safe channel is found, and a magnificent stretch of water
leads to a bay at the mouth of the Kwilu river, a navigable stream, with
a depth of eight feet, a width of forty yards and a current of five miles
an hour. The question of food now became pressing. Each day the banks
of the river were scoured for rations, by gangs of six men, whose duty
it was to purchase and bring in cassava, bread, bananas, Indian corn,
sweet potatoes, etc., not forgetting fowls, eggs, goats, etc., for the
Europeans. But these men found it hard work to obtain fair supplies.

By April 7th the camp was at Kimbanza opposite the mouth of the Lukunga
and in the midst of a land of plenty, and especially of crocodiles, which
fairly infest the river and all the tributaries thereof. Here, too, are
myriads of little fish like minnows, or sardines, which the natives catch
in great quantities, in nets, and prepare for food by baking them in the
sun. The population is quite dense, and of the same amiable mood, the
same desire to traffic, and the same willingness to enter into treaties,
as that on the river below.

Further up are the Ndunga people and the Ndunga Rapids, where the
river is penned in between high, forbidding walls and where nature has
begrudged life of every kind to the scene. But out among the villages
all is different. The people are thrifty and sprightly. Their markets
are full of sweet potatoes, eggs, fish, palm-wine, etc., and the shapely
youths, male and female, indulge in dances which possess as much poetry
of motion as the terpsichorean performances of the more highly favored
children of civilization.

The next station was Manyanga, a destination indeed, for here is a
formidable cataract, which defies the light steamers of the expedition,
and there will have to be another tedious portage to the open waters
of Stanley Pool. It was now May 1, 1881. Manyanga is 140 miles from
Vivi. The natives were friendly but adverse to founding a trading town
in their midst. Yet Stanley resolved that it should be a station and
supply point for the 95 miles still to be traversed to Stanley Pool. He
fell sick here, of fever, and lay for many days unconscious. Such was
his prostration, when he returned to his senses, that he despaired of
recovery, and bade his attendants farewell.

In the midst of hardship which threatened to break his expedition up at
this point, he was rejoiced to witness the arrival of a relief expedition
from below, other boats, plenty of provisions and a corps of workmen.
Then the site of the town of Manyanga was laid out, and a force of men
was employed to build a road around the cataract and haul the boats over
it. This point is the center of exchange for a wide territory. Slaves,
ivory, rubber, oil, pigs, sheep, goats and fowls are brought in abundance
to the market, and it is a favorite stopping-place for caravans from
the mouth of the Congo to Stanley Pool. But the natives are crusty, and
several times Stanley had to interfere to stop the quarrels which arose
between his followers and the insolent market people. At length the town
was fortified, provisioned and garrisoned, and the expedition was on
its way to Stanley Pool, around a portage of six miles in length, and
again into the Congo; then up and up, with difficult navigation, past
the mouths of inflowing rivers, around other tedious portages, through
quaint and curious tribes, whose chiefs grow more and more fantastic in
dress and jealous of power, till they even come to rival that paragon of
strutting kingliness, the famed Mtesa of Uganda. Though not hostile, they
were by no means amiable, having made a recent cession of the country on
the north of the Congo to French explorers. King Itsi, or Ngalyema, was
among the most powerful of them and upon him was to turn the fortune of
the expedition in the waters of the upper Congo. Stanley made the happy
discovery that this Ngalyema was the Itsi, of whom he had made a blood
brother on his descent of the river, and this circumstance soon paved
the way to friendship and protection, despite the murmurs and threats of
neighboring chiefs.

[Illustration: ROUNDING A PORTAGE.]

The last king of note, before reaching Stanley Pool, was Makoko, who
favored the breaking of rocks and the cutting down of trees in order
to pass boats over the country, but who wanted it understood that his
people owned the country and did not intend to part with their rights
without due consideration. Scarcely had a treaty been struck with him
when Stanley was informed that Ngalyema was on his track with two hundred
warriors, and determined to wipe out his former negotiations with blood.
Already the sound of his war-drums and the shouts of his soldiers were
heard in the distance. Stanley ordered his men to arm quickly and
conceal themselves in the bush, but to rush out frantically and make a
mock attack when they heard the gong sounding. Ngalyema appeared upon
the scene with his forces and informed Stanley that he could not go to
Kintamo, for Makoko did not own the land there. After a long talk, the
stubborn chief left the tent in anger and with threats of extermination
on his lips; but as he passed the inclosure, he was attracted by the
gong, swinging in the wind.

“What is this?” he asked.

“It is fetish,” replied Stanley.

“Strike it; let me hear it,” he exclaimed.

“Oh, Ngalyema, I dare not; it is the war fetish.”

“No, no, no! I tell you to strike.”

“Well, then!”

Here Stanley struck the gong with all his force, and in an instant a
hundred armed men sprang from the bush and rushed with demoniac yells
upon the haughty chief and his followers, keeping up all the while such
demonstrations as would lead to the impression that the next second would
bring an annihilating volley from their guns. The frightened king clung
to Stanley for protection. His followers fled in every direction.

“Shall I strike the fetish again?” inquired Stanley.

“No, no! don’t touch it!” exclaimed the now subdued king; and the broken
treaty was solemnized afresh over a gourd of palm-wine. Makoko was jolly
over the discomfiture of his powerful rival.

[Illustration: A NARROW ESCAPE. ]

These Kintamo people, sometimes called the Wambunda, now gave to Stanley
some 78 carriers and greatly assisted him in making his last twelve miles
of roadway and in conveying his boats and wagons over it. The expedition
was now in sight of Stanley Pool, beyond the region of the cataracts, and
at the foot of navigation on the upper Congo. It was now Dec. 3, 1881,
the boats were all brought up and launched in smooth water, a station was
founded, and the expedition prepared for navigation on that stupendous
stretch of water between Stanley Pool and Stanley Falls.

The Kintamo station was called Leopoldville, in honor of king Leopold of
Belgium, European patron of the Congo Free State, and to whose generosity
more than that of any other the entire expedition was due. It was the
most important town thus far founded on the Congo, for it was the center
of immense tribal influence, a base of operations for 5000 miles of
navigable waters, and a seat of plenty if the chiefs remained true to
their concessions. It was therefore well protected with a block-house
and garrison, while the magazine was stocked with food and ammunition.
Gardens were laid out and planted, stores were erected in which goods
were displayed, and soon Stanley had the pleasure of seeing the natives
bringing ivory and marketing for traffic. The stay of the expedition at
Leopoldville was somewhat lengthy and it was April, 19, 1882, before it
embarked for the upper Congo, with its 49 colored men, four whites, and
129 carrier-loads of equipments.

The boats passed Bamu Island, 14 miles in length, which occupies the
center of Stanley Pool, the stream being haunted by hippopotami and the
interior of the island by elephants and buffaloes, adventures with which
were common. The shores are yet bold and wooded, monkeys in troops fling
themselves from tree to tree, white-collared fish eagles dart with shrill
screams across the wide expanse of waters, and crocodiles stare wildly at
the approaching steamers, only to dart beneath them as they near and then
to reappear in their wake. Says Stanley, of this part of the river:

“From the Belize to Omaha, on the line of the Mississippi, I have seen
nothing to excite me to poetic madness. The Hudson is a trifle better
in its upper part. The Indus, the Ganges, the Irrawaddy, the Euphrates,
the Nile, the Niger, the La Platte, the Amazon——I think of them all,
and I can see no beauty on their shores that is not excelled many fold
by the natural beauty of this scenery, which, since the Congo highlands
were first fractured by volcanic caprice or by some wild earth-dance, has
remained unknown, unhonored and unsung.”


From Stanley Pool to Mswata, a distance of 64 miles, the river has a
width of 1500 yards, a depth sufficient to float the largest steamer, and
heavily wooded banks. The people are of the Kiteké tribes and are broken
into many bands, ruled by a high class of chieftains, who are not averse
to the coming of the white man. The Congo receives an important tributary
near Mswata, called the Kwa. This Stanley explored for 200 miles, past
the Holy Isle, or burial place of the Wabuma kings and queens, through
populous and pleasantly situated villages and onward to a splendid
expanse of water, which was named Lake Leopold II.

It was during his exploration of the Kwa that Stanley fell sick; and on
his return to Mswata, was compelled to return to Leopoldville and so
back to Manyanga, Vivi, and the various stations he had founded, to the
coast, whence he sailed for Loando, to take a steamer for Europe. The
three-year service of his Zanzibaris was about to expire; and when he met
at Vivi, the German, Dr. Peschnel-Loeche, with a large force of men and
a commission to take charge of the expedition, should anything happen to
him (Stanley), he felt that it was in the nature of a reprieve.

On August 17, 1882, he sailed from Loando for Lisbon. On his arrival in
Europe, he laid before the International Association a full account of
the condition of affairs on the Congo. He had founded five of the eight
stations at first projected, had constructed many miles of wagon road,
had left a steamer and sailing vessels on the Upper Congo, had opened
the country to traffic up to the mouth of the Kwa, a distance of 400
miles from the coast, had found the natives amiable and willing to work
and trade, and had secured treaties and concessions which guaranteed
the permanency of the benefits sought to be obtained by the expedition
and the founding of a great Free State. Yet with all this he declared
that “the Congo basin is not worth a two-shilling piece in its present
state, and that to reduce it to profitable order a railroad must be
built from the lower to the upper river.” Such road must be solely for
the benefit of Central Africa and of such as desire to traffic in that
region. He regarded the first phase of his mission as over——the opening
of communication between the Atlantic and Upper Congo. The second phase
he regarded as the obtaining of concessions from all the chiefs along the
way, without which they would be in a position to force an abandonment of
every commercial enterprise.

The International Association heard him patiently and offered to provide
funds for his more extensive work, provided he would undertake it. He
consented to do so and to push his work to Stanley Falls, if they would
give him a reliable governor for the establishments on the Lower Congo.
Such a man was promised; and after a six weeks’ stay in Europe, he sailed
again for Congo-land on November 23, 1882.

He found his trading stations in confusion, and spent some time in
restoring order, and re-victualling the empty store-houses. The temporary
bridges on his hastily built roads had begun to weaken and one at the
Mpalanga crossing gave way, compelling a tedious delay with the boats and
wagons he was pushing on to the relief of Leopoldville. Here he found no
progress had been made and that under shameful neglect everything was
going to decay. Even reciprocity with the natives had been neglected,
and garrison and tribes had agreed to let one another severely alone.
To rectify all he found wrong required heroic exertion. He found one
source of gratification in the fact that two English religious missions
had been founded on the ground of the Association, one a Baptist, the
other undenominational. Dr. Sims, head of the Baptists, was the first
to navigate the waters of the Upper Congo, and occupy a station above
Stanley Pool, but soon after the Livingstone, or undenominational
mission, established a station at the Equator. Both missions now have
steamers at their disposal, and are engaged in peaceful rivalry for moral
conquest in the Congo Basin.


The relief of Leopoldville accomplished, Stanley started in his
steam-launches, one of which was new (May 9, 1883), for the upper waters
of the Congo, with eighty men. Passing his former station at Mswata,
he sailed for Bolobo, passing through a country with few villages and
alive with lions, elephants, buffaloes and antelopes, proof that the
population is sparse at a distance from the river. Beyond the mouth of
the Lawson, the Congo leaves behind its bold shores and assumes a broader
width. It now becomes lacustrine and runs lazily through a bed carved
out of virgin soil. This is the real heart of equatorial Africa, rich
alluvium, capable of supporting a countless population and of enriching
half a world.

[Illustration: WEAVER-BIRD’S NEST.]

The Bolobo country is densely populated, but flat and somewhat unhealthy.
The villages arise in quick succession, and perhaps 10,000 people live
along the river front. They are peaceful, inclined to trade, but easily
offended at any show of superiority on the part of white men. Ibaka is
the leading chief. He it was who conducted negotiations for Gatula, who
had murdered two white men, and who had been arraigned for his double
crime before Stanley,

The latter insisted upon the payment of a heavy fine by the offending
chief——or war. After long deliberation, the fine was paid, much to
Stanley’s relief, for war would have defeated the whole object of his
expedition. Ibaka’s remark, when the affair was so happily ended, was:
“Gatula has received such a fright and has lost so much money, that
he will never be induced to murder a man again. No, indeed, he would
rather lose ten of his women than go through this scene again.” A Bolobo
concession for the Association was readily obtained in a council of the

And this station at Bolobo was most important. The natives are energetic
traders, and have agents at Stanley Pool and points further down the
river, to whom they consign their ivory and camwood powder, very much
as if they were Europeans or Americans. They even acquire and enjoy
fortunes. One of them, Manguru, is a nabob after the modern pattern,
worth fully $20,000, and his canoes and slaves exploit every creek
and affluent of the Congo, gathering up every species of merchandise
available for the coast markets. Within two hours of Bolobo is the market
place of the By-yanzi tribe. The town is called Mpumba. It is a live
place on market days, and the fakirs vie with each other in the sale of
dogs, crocodiles, hippopotamus meat, snails, fish and red-wood powder.

Negotiations having been completed at Bolobo, and the station fully
established, Stanley started with his flotilla, May 28th, on his way up
the river. The natives whom he expected to confront were the Uyanzi and
Ubangi. He was well provided with guides from Bolobo, among whom were two
of Ibaka’s slaves. The shores of the river were now densely wooded, and
the river itself spread out to the enormous width of five miles, which
space was divided into channels by islands, miles in length, and covered
with rubber trees, tamarinds, baobab, bombax, red-wood, palms and date
palms, all of which were interwoven with profuse creepers, making an
impenetrable mass of vegetation, royal to look upon, but suggestive of
death to any one who dared to lift the verdant veil and look behind.

Slowly the tiny steamers push against the strong currents and make
their way through this luxuriant monotony, broken, to be sure, every
now and then, by the flit of a sun-bird, the chirp of a weaver, the
swish of a bamboo reed, the graceful nodding of an overgrown papyrus,
the scurrying of a flock of parrots, the yawn of a lazy hippopotamus,
the plunge of a crocodile, the chatter of a disturbed monkey colony, the
scream of the white-collared fish eagle, the darting of a king-fisher,
the pecking of wag-tails, the starting of jays and flamingoes. Yet with
all these appeals to eye and ear, there is the sepulchral gloom of
impervious forest, the sad expanse of grassy plain, the spectral isles
of the stream, the vast dome of tropical sky, and the sense of slowness
of motion and cramped quarters, which combine to produce a melancholy
almost appalling. It is by no means a Rhine journey, with gay steamers,
flush with food and wine. The Congo is one-and-a-half times larger
than the Mississippi, and with a width which is majestic in comparison
with the “Father of Waters.” It shows a dozen varieties of palm. Its
herds of hippopotami, flocks of gleeful monkeys, troops of elephants
standing sentry at forest entrances, bevies of buffaloes grazing on
its grassy slopes, swarms of ibis, parrots and guinea-fowl fluttering
everywhere——these create a life for the Congo, surpassing in variety that
of the Mississippi. But the swift-moving, strong, sonorous steamer, and
the bustling river town, are wanting.

At last night comes, and the flotilla is twenty miles above Bolobo. Night
does not mean the end of a day’s work with the expedition, but rather
the beginning of one, for it is the signal for all hands to put ashore
with axes and saws to cut and carry a supply of wood for the morrow’s
steaming. A great light is lit upon the shore, and for hours the ringing
of axes is heard, varied by the woodman’s weird chant. The supply is
borne back in bundles, the tired natives eat their cassava bread and
boiled rice suppers, the whites partake of their roast goat’s meat,
beans, bananas, honey, milk and coffee, and then all is silence on the
deep, dark river. The camp is Ugende, still in the By-yanzi country. The
natives are suspicious at first, but are appeased by the order that every
member of the expedition shall make up his reedy couch in close proximity
to the steamers.

The next day’s steaming is through numerous villages, banana groves, palm
groups, and an agreeable alternation of bluff and vale. The Levy Hills
approach the water in the airy red projections of Iyumbi. The natives
gaze in awe upon the passing flotilla, as much as to say, “What does it
all mean?” “Has doom indeed dawned for us?” Two hours above Iyumbi the
steamers lose their way in the multitude of channels, and have to put
back. On their return, twenty canoes are sighted in a creek. Information
must be had, and the whale-boat is launched and ordered to visit the
canoes. At sight of it, the occupants of the canoes flee. Chase is given,
and five miles are passed before the whale-boat catches up. The occupants
of the canoes are found to be women, who jump into the water and escape
through the reeds to the shore. They prove dumb to all inquiries as to
the river courses, and might as well have been spared their fright.

On May 31st the journey was against a head wind, and so slow that two
trading canoes, each propelled by twenty By-yanzi paddles, bound for
Ubangi, kept pace with the steamers all day. Provisions were now running
low. Since leaving Bolobo, the eighty natives and seven Europeans had
consumed at the rate of 250 pounds of food daily. It was therefore time
to prepare for barter with the settlement which came into view on June
1st, and which the guides called Lukolela.

Lukolela is a succession of the finest villages thus far seen on the
Congo. They are composed of substantial huts, built on a bold shore, and
amid a primeval forest, thinned of its trees to give building spaces. The
natives are still of the Wy-yanzi tribe, and whether friendly or not,
could not be ascertained on first approach. Stanley took no chances with
them, but steaming slowly past their five mile of villages, he ordered
all the showy calicoes and trinkets to be displayed, and placed his
guides and interpreters in the bows of the boats to harangue the natives
and proclaim his desire to trade in peace. Though the throng gradually
increased on the shore and became more curious as each village was
passed, it gave no response except that the country had been devastated
by frightful disease and was in a state of starvation. Horrid indeed was
the situation, if they spoke the truth! But what of the fat, well-to-do
looking people on the banks? Ah! there must be something wrong somewhere!
The steamers passed above the villages and put up for the night. Soon the
natives came trooping from the villages, bearing loads of fowls, goats,
plantains, bananas, cassava, sweet-potatoes, yams, eggs, and palm-oil,
and all eager for a trade. Barter was brisk that night, and was resumed
the next morning, when canoe after canoe appeared, loaded down with
rations. A supply of food for eight days was secured. They excused their
falsehoods of the previous day to the fear they had of the steamers.
On finding that they were not dangerous, their cowardice turned into
admiration of a craft they had never seen before.


The Congo now ran through banks 100 feet high and a mile and a half
apart, clothed with magnificent timber. Between these the flotilla sailed
on June 2d, being visited occasionally by native fishermen with fish to
sell. The camp this night was in a deserted spot, with nothing to cheer
it except dense flocks of small birds, followed by straggling armies of
larger ones resembling crows. On the evening of June 3d the steamers
reached a point a few miles below Ngombé. Here Stanley was surprised to
hear his name called, in good English, by the occupants of two canoes,
who had fish and crocodiles to sell. He encouraged the mongers by making
a purchase, and on inquiry found that the natives here carry on quite a
brisk trade in young crocodiles, which they rear for the markets. They
procure the eggs, hatch them in the sand, and then secure the young ones
in ponds, covered with nets, till they are old enough to market.

Ngombé was now sighted, on a bank 40 feet above the river, amid a wealth
of banana groves and other signs of abundance. Above and below Ngombé the
river is from four to five miles wide, but here it narrows to two miles
and flows with a swift current. The sail over the wide stretch above
Ngombé was through the land of the Nkuku, a trading people. At Butunu the
steamers were welcomed with delight, and the shores echoed with shouts
of “Malamu!” Good! But it remained for the Usindi to greet the travelers
with an applause which was ridiculously uproarious. Hundreds of canoes
pushed into the stream, followed and surrounded the steamers, their
occupants cheering as though they were frantic, and quite drowning every
counter demonstration. At length a dozen of them sprang aboard one of the
steamers, shook hands with all the crew, and gratified their curiosity
by a close inspection of the machinery and equipments. Then they would
have the steamers put back to their landing at Usindi, where the welcome
was continued more obstreperously than ever. The secret of it all was
that these people were great river traders, and many of them had been to
Leopoldville and Kintamo, 300 miles below, where they had seen houses,
boats and wagons. They were a polished people, not given to show of their
weapons for purposes of terrorizing their visitors, and kindly in the
extreme. Iuka, their king, besought Stanley to make a station at Usindi
and enter into permanent trade relations with his people.


A very few miles above Usindi the flotilla entered a deep channel of the
Congo, which seemed to pass between fruitful islands, whose shores were
lined with people. They were ominously quiet till the steamers passed,
when they gave pursuit in their canoes. The steamers stopped, and the
pursuers made the announcement that they bore an invitation from King
Mangombo, of Irebu, to visit him. Mention of the Irebu was enough to
determine Stanley. They are the champion traders of the Upper Congo, and
are equalled only by the powerful Ubanzi who live on the north side of
that great flood. The Irebu have, time and again, borne down upon the
Lukolela, Ngombé, Nkuku, Butunu and Usindi, and even the fierce Bengala,
and taught them all how to traffic in peace and with credit.

When the steamers came to anchor at Mangambo’s village, the aged king
headed a procession of his people and welcomed Stanley by shaking his
hand in civilized fashion. There were cheers, to be sure, but not the
wild vociferations of those who looked upon his flotilla as something
supernatural. There was none of that eager curiosity which characterizes
the unsophisticated African, but a dignified bearing and frank speech.
They had an air of knowledge and travel which showed that their
intercourse with the trading world had not been in vain. They know the
Congo by heart from Stanley Pool to Upoto, a distance of 600 miles; are
acquainted with the military strength and commercial genius of all the
tribes, and can compute the value of cloth, metals, beads and trinkets,
in ivory, livestock and market produce, as quickly as the most skillful
accountant. Blood brotherhood was made with Mangombo, valuable gifts
were interchanged, and then the chief, in a long speech, asked Stanley
to intercede in his behalf in a war he was waging with Magwala and
Mpika,——which he did in such a way as to bring about a truce.

The large tributary, Lukanga, enters the Congo near Irebu, with its black
waters and sluggish current. The flotilla left the mouth of the Lukanga
on June 6th, and after a sail of 50 miles, came to Ikengo on June 8th.
The route had been between many long islands, heavily wooded, while the
shores bore an unbroken forest of teak, mahogany, gum, bombax and other
valuable woods. At Ikengo the natives came dashing into the stream in
myriad of canoes shouting their welcomes and praising the merits of their
respective villages. Here it was, “Come to Ikengo!” There it was, “Come
to Itumba!” Between it was, “Come to Inganda!” With all it was, “We have
women, ivory, slaves, goats, sheep, pigs,” etc. It was more like a fakir
scene in Constantinople or Cairo than a pagan greeting in the heart of
the wilderness. Perhaps both their familiarity and importunity was due in
great part to the fact they remembered Stanley on his downward trip years

Having, in 1877, been royally received at Inganda, Stanley landed there,
and stopped temporarily among those healthy, bronze-colored denizens,
with their fantastic caps of monkey, otter, leopard or goat skin, and
their dresses of grassy fibre. From this point Stanley made a personal
exploration to the large tributary of the Congo, called the Mohindu,
which he had mapped on his trip down the Congo. He found what he had
conceived to be an affluent of 1,000 yards wide, to be one of only 600
yards wide, with low shores, running into extensive timber swamps. He
called it an African Styx. But further up it began to develop banks.
Soon villages appeared, and by and by came people, armed, yellow-bodied,
and dancing as if they meant to awe the occupants of the boat. But the
boat did not stop till it arrived at a cheerful village, 80 miles up the
river, where, on attempting to stop, it was warned off with the threat
that a landing would be a sure signal for a fight. Not wishing to tempt
them too far, the steamer put back, receiving as a farewell a volley of
sticks and stones which fell far short of their object.

On the return of the steamer to Inganda, preparation was made for the
sail to the next station up the Congo, which being in the latitude of
only one minute north of the Equator, or, in other words, as nearly under
it as was possible, was called Equator Station. This station was made a
permanent one by the appointment of Lieut. Vangele as commander, with a
garrison of 20 men. Lieut. Coquilhat, with 20 men, was also left there,
till reinforcements and supplies should come up from Leopoldville. After
remaining here long enough to prepare a station site and appease the
neighboring chiefs with gifts, the balance of the expedition returned
down the river to Inganda, or rather to Irebu, for it had been determined
that Inganda was too sickly a place for a station. Yet how were these
hospitable people to be informed of the intended change of base without
giving offence? Stanley’s guide kindly took the matter in hand, and his
method would have done credit to a Philadelphia lawyer. Rubbing his
eyes with pepper till the tears streamed down his cheeks, and assuming
a broken-hearted expression, he stepped ashore among the assembled
natives, as the boat touched at Inganda, and took a position in their
midst, utterly regardless of their shouts of welcome and their other
evidences of hearty greeting. To all their anxious inquiries he responded
nothing, being wholly engaged in his role of sorrow. At last, when their
importunity could not be further resisted, he told them a pitiful story
of hardship and death in an imaginary encounter up the river, and how
Mangombo’s boy, of Irebu, had fallen a victim, beseeching them to join in
a war of redress, etc., etc. The acting of the native guide was complete,
and all Inganda was so deceived by it and so bent on a war of revenge
that it quite forgot to entertain any ill-feeling at the departure of the
steamer and the abandonment of the station. So Stanley sailed down to
Irebu, where he found his truce broken and Mangombo plunged again into
fierce war with his neighbors——Mpika and Magwala.

Once more Stanley interceded by calling a council of the chiefs on both
sides. After an impressive speech, in which he detailed the horrors of
war and the folly of further slaughter over a question of a few slaves,
he induced the hostile chiefs to shake hands and exchange pledges of
peace. They ratified the terms by firing a salute over the grave of the
war, and disbanded. Irebu is a large collection of villages extending
for fully five miles along the Congo and Lukanga, and carrying a depth
of two miles into the country. These closely knitted villages contain
a population of 15,000 people, with as many more in the immediate


The Lukanga was now explored. Its sluggish, reed-obstructed mouth soon
brought the exploring steamer into a splendid lake with village-lined
shores. This was Lake Mantumba, 144 miles in circumference. The
inhabitants are experts in the manufacture of pottery and camwood powder
and carry on a large ivory trade with the Watwa dwarfs.

Stanley then returned to the Congo and continued his downward journey,
rescuing in one place the occupants of a capsized canoe; at another
giving aid to a struggling Catholic priest on his way to the mouth of
the Kwa to establish a mission; trying an ineffectual shot at a lion
crouching on the bank and gazing angrily at the flotilla, pursuing its
fleeing form, only to stumble on the freshly-slain carcass of a buffalo
which the forest-king had stricken down while it was drinking, and at
length arriving at Leopoldville, after an absence of 57 days, to find
there several new houses, erected by the commandant, Lieut. Valcke, who
had also founded the new station of Kinshassa. Where two months before
all was wilderness, now fully 500 banana-trees were flourishing, terms
of peace had been kept with the whimsical Ngalyema, and the store-rooms
of the station were regular banks, that is, they were well stocked with
brass rods, the circulating medium of the country.

Stanley remained at Leopoldville for some time, rectifying mischiefs
which had occurred at Vivi and Manyanga, and dispatching men and supplies
up to Bolobo. Here incidents crowded upon him. Having commissioned a
young continental officer to establish a station on the opposite side of
the river, the fellow no sooner arrived on the ground than he developed a
homicidal mania and shot one of his own sergeants. He was brought back in
a tattered and dazed condition and dismissed down the river. Word came of
the destruction of a canoe by a gale near the mouth of the Kwa, and the
drowning of Lieut. Jansen and twelve people, among whom was Abbé Guyot,
the Catholic priest above mentioned. From Kimpoko station came word that
a quarrel had broken out there with the natives and that relief must
be had. A visit showed the station to have been deserted, and it was
destroyed and abandoned. More and more awful grew the situation. A canoe
courier brought the harrowing word that Bolobo had been burned, with all
the freshly dispatched goods.

This news spurred Stanley to a hasty start for the ill-fated station on
August 22d. Arriving opposite Bolobo, Stanley’s rear steamers were fired
upon from an ambush on the shore, and forced to administer a return fire.
His steamers had never been fired upon before. He effected a landing
at Bolobo, only to find a majority of the villages hostile to him, and
bent on keeping up a desultory fire from the bush. So, unloading one
of the steamers, he sent it back to Leopoldville to bring up quickly
a Krupp cannon and ammunition. Despite his endeavors to bring about a
better feeling, Stanley’s men were fired upon daily, and they returned
it as best they could, occasionally killing a native, and doing damage
to their banana trees, beer pots and chicken coups. At length the
wounding of a chief brought about a parley and offers of peace tokens,
but Stanley replied that since they seemed to be so fond of fighting,
and were not doing him any particular harm, he proposed to keep it up
from day to day till his monster gun arrived from Stanley Pool, when he
would blow them all sky-high. This awful threat was too much for them. A
nine days’ palaver ensued, which resulted in their payment of a fine and
renewed peace. But when the great gun arrived, they saw, in the absence
of trigger, stock and ramrod, so little likeness to a gun, that they
claimed Stanley had deceived them, and refused to be propitiated till he
proved it to be what he had represented. The Congo at Bolobo is 4,000
yards wide. Stanley ordered the cannon to be fired at a range of 2,000
yards, and when they saw a column of water thrown up by the striking of
the charge at that distance, and witnessed the recoil of the piece, they
began to think it was indeed a terrible weapon. They were still further
convinced of the truth of his representations by a second shot, which
carried the charge to a distance of 3,000 yards.

It was by such manœuvres as these that Stanley established fresh
relations with these Wy-yanzi tribes. They are naturally wild and
turbulent. A dispute over a brass rod, or a quarrel over a pot of beer,
is a signal for war. Superstition rules them, as few tribes are ruled. A
bad dream by a chief may lead to the suspicion that he is bewitched, and
some poor victim is sure to suffer burning for witchcraft. Ibaka caused a
young girl to be strangled because her lover had sickened and died. At an
upper village forty-five people were slaughtered over the grave of their
chief——a sort of propitiatory sacrifice.

After all matters had been settled, Stanley read them a lecture on the
folly of fighting friendly white men, who had never done them an injury,
and did not intend to. To show his appreciation of the situation, he made
them a present of cloth and brass rods, and offered to pay for a treat of
beer. They went out and held a palaver, and then returned with a request
that the gifts be duplicated. “Never!” shouted Stanley. “Ibaka, this land
is yours. Take it. I and my people depart from Bolobo forever!”

To this all the chiefs remonstrated, saying they had no intention of
driving him away, and explaining that their demand was only according to
the custom of the Wy-yanzi to always ask for twice as much as was offered
them. Despite this rather surprising commercial spirit, they are not a
vindictive people——simply superstitious and quarrelsome.

After these difficulties, Stanley resumed his up-river journey for
Lukolela, passing on the way the mouths of the Minkené river, of the
Likuba, and of the larger river Bunga, whose banks are thickly strewn
with villages. Once at Lukolela, a station was formed by clearing away
the tall forest trees. Though the forests were magnificent, and capable
of furnishing timber for generations, the soil was hard, stony and
forbidding, and Stanley despaired of ever getting a garden of sufficient
dimensions and fertility to support a garrison. He, however, left a Mr.
Glave, a young Englishman, in charge, who seemed to think he could force
nature to promise subsistence and comfort.

On September 22d Stanley started for Usindi, having on board Miyongo, of
that place, and his shipwrecked crew. On their safe arrival, there was no
show of gratitude for the favor done, but blood-brotherhood was made with
Miyongo. This provoked the jealousy of the senior chief, Iuka, a dirty
old fellow, of wicked mien, whose grievance seemed to be that Miyongo
was too popular in the community. A short palaver reconciled him to the
situation, and Stanley departed with the assurance that Usindi might be
counted on as a safe stopping-place in the future. Miyongo favored him
with a guide who was well acquainted with the upper waters of the Congo.

[Illustration: A FUNERAL DANCE.]

Irebu was now passed, and then the mouth of the Bauil, whose people are
a piratical crew, dreaded by all their neighbors. By September 29th the
flotilla was at Equator Station again, after an absence of one hundred
days. What a transformation! The jungle and scrub had disappeared, and in
their stead was a solid clay house, roomy, rain-proof and bullet-proof,
well lighted and furnished. Around it were the neat clay huts of the
colored carriers and soldiers, each the centre of a garden where grew
corn, sugar-cane, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, cucumbers, etc. Then there
was a grand garden, full of onions, radishes, carrots, beans, peas,
beets, lettuce, potatoes and cabbages, and also a servants’ hall,
goat-houses, fowl-houses and all the et-ceteras of an African plantation.
It was Stanley’s ideal of a Congo station, and sight of it gave him
greater heart for his enterprise than any thing he had yet seen. The
native chief, Ikengé, was at first disposed to be troublesome, but was
soon appeased. On October 11th Stanley congratulated himself that he had
passed so much of the river limit, leaving peace behind him with all the
nations, and stations abounding in means of support, if they exerted
themselves in the right direction.

Equator Station is 757 miles from the Atlantic Ocean and 412 miles above
Leopoldville, on Stanley Pool. Stanley’s initial work was really done
here, but in response to earnest wishes from Brussels, he continued it
in the same spirit and for the same purpose for 600 miles further, with
a view of making a permanent station at Stanley Falls. With 68 colored
men and 5 Europeans on board, and with his steamers well freighted with
necessaries, he left Equator Station on October 16th. The first place of
moment passed was at Uranga, near the confluence of the Lulunga with the
Congo. The country around is flat, densely wooded, and the villages close
together. The Uranga people were anxious for a landing and palaver, but
the steamers pushed on to Bolombo, where a famine prevailed, and where
the natives were peaceable and anxious to make blood-brotherhood.


Above Bolombo the steamers were met by a fleet of canoes, whose occupants
bore the news that the Bengala were anxious for a stop and palaver. These
were the terrible fighters who harassed Stanley so sorely on his descent
of the Congo in 1877. He had heard further down the river that they had
threatened to dispute every inch of water with the white man if ever he
came that way again. But he had also heard from Mangombo, of Irebu, that
the lesson they had learned was so severe that all the white men would
have to do would be to shake a stick at them. Still Stanley approached
anxiously. The Bengala villages stretch for miles along the Congo. He
did not stop his steamers, which were soon surrounded by hundreds of
canoes, but kept slowly moving past the countless villages for fully
five hours. The canoe-men seemed impelled wholly by curiosity, and no
sign of hostility appeared. The guide held frequent talks with the
natives, none of which evoked other than friendly replies. They are a
tall, broad-shouldered, graceful people, shading off from a dark bronze
to a light complexion. The steamers came to a halt for the night at an
island, two hours’ sail from the upper end of the villages, and 500 yards
from the shore, and thither the guide came in the evening with a young
chief, Boleko, who invited a landing the next day. In the morning he
came with an escort of canoes and took Stanley to his village, through
the identical channel whence had issued the hostile canoes in 1877. Here
trading was carried on briskly and satisfactorily, till a message came
from old Mata Bwyki to the effect that he regarded it as an insult on the
part of a boy like Boleko to be extending the tribal honors in that way.
The only way out of this was for the steamers to drop back two miles and
spend a day opposite the village of the old chief——Lord-of-many-guns. Old
Mata was found to be a Herculean fellow, nearly eighty years old, and
walking with a staff that resembled a small mast. By his side appeared
seven sons, all fine-looking fellows, but the gray shock of the old man
towered above them all when he straightened himself up. Around them
was a throng which numbered thousands. The assembly place and place of
welcome was laid with grass mats. Stanley and his men marched into it,
ogled on every side, and not knowing whether the end would be peace or
war. The guide presented them with a speech which described Stanley’s
work and objects——all he had done below them on the river, the advantages
it would be to treat and trade with him, winding up with an intimation
that it might be dangerous, or at least useless, to prove unfriendly,
for his steamers were loaded with guns and ammunition sufficient for the
extermination of the entire people. The result was a treaty, sealed with
blood-brotherhood, and a promise on the part of Stanley to return at no
distant day and establish a permanent station among the Bengala. This
village was Iboko.

The Congo here is literally filled with islands which render a passage
from one shore to the other almost impossible. These islands are all
richly verdure-clad and present a scene of rare loveliness, draped in a
vegetable life that finds a parallel no where else in nature. It took the
steamers thirteen hours to work their way across to the left, or Mutembo
side. But Mutembo was deserted. The steamers made Mkatakura, through
channels bordered with splendid copal forests, whose tops were covered
with orchilla——fortunes for whole civilized nations, if possessed and
utilized. Mkatakura was also deserted. Where were these people? Their
places had been populous and hostile in 1877. Had they fallen a prey to
stronger tribes? Alas! such must have been their fate in a country where
wars never end, and where provocations are the slightest.

Many deserted settlements were now passed, when Mpa, ruled by Iunga,
was reached, 744 miles from Leopoldville. The people were peaceful and
disposed to make all necessary concessions. The next day brought them to
Nganza, ruled by old Rubanga, who had received Stanley with cordiality
in 1877. The people were exceedingly anxious to trade, and offered their
wares, especially their ivory, of which they had plenty, at ridiculously
low figures. The people are known as the Langa-langa——the upper
country——and they go almost entirely naked. Their bodies are cross-marked
and tattooed. The country is regarded as a paradise for ivory traders,
owing to the ignorance of the natives as to the real commercial value of
the article. Here is the turning-point in African currency. The cloth
and brass-rods of the Atlantic coast no longer hold good, but the Canton
bead and the cowry of Ujiji are the measure of exchange. Langa-langa
is therefore the commercial water-shed which divides the Atlantic and
Pacific influence.

On November 4th Ikassa was passed, whose people fled on the approach of
the steamers. It was the same at Yakongo. Then came a series of deserted
villages. Presently appeared the newly-settled towns of Ndobo and Ibunda,
with their wattled huts. Bumba came next, with whose chief, Myombi,
blood-brotherhood was made amid a throng of curious sight-seers. It was
the fiftieth time Stanley’s arm had been punctured for treaty purposes
since he entered upon his journey. There was little opportunity for
trading here owing to the curiosity of the people over the steamers. They
could hardly be persuaded that the dreaded Ibanza——devil——did not live
down in the boats. It must be he who required so much wood for food and
gave such groans. If not, what was it that lived in that great iron drum
and made those wheels spin round so rapidly? In this mood they forgot the
art of exchange so natural with African natives. Their curiosity was such
that the crowds about and upon the steamers became not only a drawback
to exchange, but to work. At length one of the cabin-boys tried the
effect of a practical joke. He opened the cabin door and pushed forward
the form of a splendid Bengal tiger, as Ibanza, which was creating all
the noise and trouble in the boat. The frightened natives shrieked and
ran at glance of the terrible figure, and the river bank was cleared in
a moment. Yells of laughter followed them from the boat’s crew. Being
assured by this that nothing harmful was intended, they began to cluster
back, and really joined heartily in the merriment, as they saw that the
source of their terror was only a tiger skin hurriedly stuffed for the
purpose of giving them a scare. Trade was more active after that, and
provisions were plenty.

Above Bomba the steamers neared the equally populous town of Yambinga.
The chief was Mukuga, who wore an antelope-skin cap adorned with cock’s
feathers, a broad shoulder-belt with leopard-skin attachment, and
strings of tags, tassels and fetish mysteries. He was a timid chief,
notwithstanding his gaudy apparel, and quite willing to make blood
brotherhood. All of these later villages were plentifully supplied with
war-canoes, the count being 556 at Lower and Upper Yambinga, and 400 at

Above Yambinga the flotilla got lost in an affluent of the Congo and
had to put back to the main stream. The stream was supposed to be the
Itimbiri. For many days both shores of the Congo had not appeared at
once. But on the 12th both sides could be seen, and on the right was a
wide plain once inhabited by the Yalulima, a tribe of artisans skilled in
the manufacture of iron, including swords, spears, bells and fetishes of
various devices. On an island above dwelt the Yambungu, who were disposed
to trade and who brought fine sweet-potatoes, fowls, eggs, and a species
of sheep with broad, flat tails.


The districts were now very populous, and the affluents frequent and
very complicated as to name and direction of flow. The Basaka, Bahamba
and Baru villages were passed without a stop. At all of these there were
canoe demonstrations, but whether for hostile purpose or not was not
inquired after. The flotilla was now nearing the great Congo affluent,
the Aruwimi, out of whose mouth issued the enormous canoe-fleet which so
nearly annihilated Stanley in 1877. He gave orders to be on the alert,
but to resort to hostilities only when all hope of self-preservation
otherwise had failed. Scarcely had these orders passed when a stream of
long, splendid-looking war-canoes, filled with armed men, dashed out from
behind an island, and began to reconnoitre the steamers. They pushed over
to the right bank, and kept an upward course, without show of resistance
and at a safe distance. The steamers plunged ahead, and soon the mouth of
the Aruwimi opened its spacious jaws to receive them. High on the bank
appeared the town of Mokulu, whose Basoko inmates had fought the battle
with Stanley years before. He knew their disposition then, but what was
it now? Was the meeting to be one of war or friendship?

The Congo has a majestic flow where it receives its great tributary,
the Aruwimi. Rounding a point, the steamers entered the affluent, to
find the villagers in force, dressed in war-paint, armed with spear and
shield, beating their war-drums, and disporting themselves fantastically
on the banks. The canoes of observation were speedily joined by others.
The three steamers were put across to a clearing on the divide between
the Congo and Aruwimi, and two of them brought to anchor. The _Eu Avant_
was then steamed up the Aruwimi past Mokulu. Then her head was turned
down stream, and the guide was stationed on the cabin to proclaim the
words of peace and friendship as the steamer slowly returned. The drums
on shore ceased to beat. The battle-horns were hushed. The leaping forms
were still. The guide was eloquent in his speech and dramatic in his
action. He had the ear of all Mokulu. At length a response came that
if all the steamers anchored together, the Basoko would soon come as
friends. The canoes hovered about, but could not be persuaded to come
within 250 yards. Hours elapsed before they mustered up sufficient
courage to approach the shore within hailing distance of the camps at
the anchorage. Thither the guide and three companions went, and the
ceremony of blood-brotherhood was performed. The town of Mokulu heard the
shouts of satisfaction at this result, and a response came in the shape
of drum-beats and horn-toots. Intercourse with the fierce Basoko was a


These Basokos received Stanley’s guide, Yumbila, first and loaded him
with presents. They then told him of Stanley’s former approach and
battle, also of a second visitation far worse than Stanley’s, which
must have been one by an Arab gang of slave-stealers, judging from its
barbarity. They were averse to a journey up the Aruwimi, though willing
that the expedition should proceed up the Congo. It was impossible to get
information from them respecting their river. They proved to be willing
traders, and possessed products in abundance. Their spears, knives,
paddles and shields showed remarkable workmanship, being delicately
polished, and carved with likenesses of lizards, crocodiles, canoes, fish
and buffaloes. Their headdresses were of fine palm materials, decorated,
and a knit haversack formed a shoulder-piece for each man. Physically
they are a splendid people, industrious after their style, fond of
fishing, and not given to that ignorant, childish curiosity so common
among other tribes. They are adepts at canoe construction, and some of
their vessels require a hundred stout warriors to propel them in a fight.

Notwithstanding opposition, Stanley determined to explore the Aruwimi,
which is 1,600 yards wide at its mouth, and narrows to 900 yards above
Mokula. He found in succession the Umaneh, the Basongo, the Isombo, all
populous, timid, and friendly. After passing Yambua and Irungu, he came
to the quite populous metropolis of Yambumba, on a bluff 40 feet high,
containing 8,000 people living in steeply conical huts, embowered by
bombax, palms, banana-trees and fig-trees. The puffing of the steamers
put the whole town to flight. Further on came the rapids of the river and
the Yambuya people and town. These shrewd people declined to trade on
the plea of poverty, and even refused to give the correct name of their
village. Their appearance belied their assertions. Stanley found the
rapids of the Aruwimi a bar to steam navigation. They are 96 miles from
the mouth of the river, which runs nearly westward thus far. It was this
brief exploration of the river which determined him to use it as a route
to Albert Nyanza on his search for Emin Pasha. Should it keep its course
and continue its volume, it could not but find a source far to the east
in the direction of the lake, and very near to its shores. As one of the
fatalities which overhang explorers, Stanley mistook it for the Welle,
described by Schweinfurth, just as Livingstone mistook the Lualaba for
the Nile.

This Welle, or Wellemakua, river about which Stanley indulges in
surmises, is the celebrated river brought into notice by Schweinfurth’s
discoveries, and over which a geographical controversy raged for
seventeen years. The question was whether it was the Shari river, which
emptied into Lake Tchad, or whether its mysterious outlet was further
south. Stanley’s last journey in search of Emin Pasha pretty definitely
settled the controversy by ascertaining that the Welle is the upper
course of the Mobangi, a tributary of the Congo.


And while speaking of Schweinfurth, we must use him as authority to
settle any misapprehension likely to arise respecting the nature of the
dwarfs which Stanley encountered on the waters of the Upper Aruwimi. He
calls them Monbuttus, thereby giving the impression that the tribe is
one of dwarfs. It was Schweinfurth’s province to set at rest the long
disputed question of the existence of a dwarf race in Central Africa.
He proved, once for all, that Herodotus and Aristotle were not dealing
with fables when they wrote of the pygmies of Central Africa. One day
he suddenly found himself surrounded by what he conjectured was a crowd
of impudent boys, who pointed their arrows at him, and whose manner
betokened intentional disrespect. He soon learned that these hundreds
of little fellows were veritable dwarfs, and were a part of the army
of Munza, the great Monbuttu king. These are the now famous Akka, who,
so far as we know, are the smallest of human beings. It is these same
Akka who, wandering in the forest a little south of Schweinfurth’s
route, picked off many a carrier in Stanley’s late expedition, using
arrows whose points were covered with a deadly poison, and refusing all
overtures of friendship.

Schweinfurth’s description of the Niam-Niams (Great-Eaters) and of their
southern neighbors, the Monbuttus, is the best that has yet appeared in
print. He approached the country through the powerful Dinka tribes on
the north, whom he found rich in cattle, experts in iron-working and
highly proficient in the art of pottery ornamentation, especially as to
their smoking-pipes. Competent authorities agree with his opinion that
the ornamental designs upon their potteries and iron and copper wares,
now exhibited in the Berlin Museum of Ethnology, would not discredit
a European artist, and among these people, so far advanced in some
respects, Schweinfurth discovered the first evidences of cannibalism
which is said to prevail, on very doubtful authority, however, in a very
large part of the Congo Basin. It is a noteworthy fact that, in all his
travels, Livingstone never saw evidence of this revolting practice except
on one or two occasions, and in all his voluminous writings he hardly
refers to the topic. Dr. Junker, however, draws a distinction between the
Niam-Niam and Monbuttu cannibals which Schweinfurth in his briefer visit
failed to observe. Junker says the Niam-Niam use human flesh as food only
because they believe that in this way they acquire the bravery and other
virtues with which their victims may have been endowed. The Monbuttu, on
the other hand, make war upon their neighbors for no other purpose than
to procure human flesh for food, because they delight in it as a part
of their cuisine. With methodical care they dry the flesh they do not
immediately use, and add it to their reserve supplies of food.


Schweinfurth’s journey into Niam-Niam was through a prairie land covered
with the tallest grasses he had yet seen in Africa. The people are given
to cattle-raising and the chase. They are not of stalwart size, and their
color is dark-brown rather than black. What they lack in stature they
make up in athletic qualities. They took a keen interest in showing the
traveler their sights, and in the evening regaled his camp with music,
dispensed by a grotesque singer, who accompanied his attenuated voice
with a local guitar of thin, jingling sound. The drums and horns of the
Niam-Niams are used only for war purposes. Everything testified to the
fruitfulness of the soil. Sweet potatoes and yams were piled up in the
farmsteads, and circular receptacles of clay for the preservation of
corn were erected upon posts in the yards. The yards are surrounded by
hedges of paradise figs; back of these are the plantations of manioc and
maize, and beyond their fields of eleusine. The women are modest and
retiring in the presence of white men, and their husbands hold them in
high respect. The people are great believers in magic. The best shots,
when they have killed an unusual number of antelopes or buffaloes, are
credited with having charmed roots in their possession. The Niam-Niam
country is important as being the water-shed between the Nile and the
rivers which run westward into the Congo, the Welle being the largest,
which runs nearly parallel with the recently discovered Aruwimi. The
Niam-Niam are great ivory traders and take copper, cloth, or trinkets
at a cheap figure for this valuable ware. The southern and western part
of their country becomes densely wooded and the trees are gigantic.
Here the shape of the huts change, becoming loftier and neater, the
yards having posts in them for displaying trophies of war and the chase.
The characteristics of the Niam-Niam are pronounced and they can be
identified at once amidst the whole series of African races.

[Illustration: NIAM-NIAM MINSTREL.]

[Illustration: NIAM-NIAM WARRIORS.]

Every Niam-Niam soldier carries a lance, trumbash, and dagger, made
by their own smiths. Wooing is dependent on a payment exacted from
the suitor by the father of the intended bride. When a man resolves
on matrimony, he applies to the sub-chieftain who helps him to secure
his wife. In spite of the practice of polygamy, the marriage bond is
sacred, and unfaithfulness is generally punished with death. The trait
is paramount for this people to show consistent affection for their
wives. Schweinfurth doubts the charge of cannibalism brought against this
people, and thinks their name “Great Eaters” might have given rise to the
impression that they were “man-eaters.”

[Illustration: RECEIVING THE BRIDE.]

The festivities that occur in case of marriage are a bridal procession,
at the head of which the chieftain leads the bride to the home of her
future husband, accompanied by musicians, minstrels and jesters. A feast
is given, of which all partake in common, though in general the women
are accustomed to eat alone in their huts. This marriage celebration,
with slight variations, is usual with the tribes of Central Africa.
Livingstone describes one among the Hamees of the Lualaba river, in
which the bride is borne to the home of her husband on the shoulders of
her lover or chieftain. The domestic duties of a Niam-Niam wife consist
mainly in cultivating the homestead, preparing the daily meals, painting
her husband’s body and dressing his hair. Children require very little
care in this genial climate, being carried about in a band or scarf till
old enough to walk, and then left to run about with very little clothing

They are lovers of music, as are their neighbors, especially the Bongo
people, who possess a variety of quaint instruments capable of producing
fairly tuneful concerts. Their language is an up-shoot of the great root
which is the original of every native tongue in Africa north of the
Equator. They always consult auguries before going to war. In grief for
the dead they shave their heads. A corpse is adorned for burial in dyed
skins and feathers. They bury the dead with scrupulous regard to the
points of the compass, the men facing the east and the women the west.

Stanley now steamed back to the Congo, and once more breasted its yellow
flood. He was now in the true heart of Africa, 1,266 miles from the sea
and 921 from Leopoldville, and upon a majestic flood capable of carrying
a dozen rivers like the Aruwimi. It was a region of deep, impenetrable
forests, fertile soil, and few villages, for the fierce Bahunga seemed
to have terrorized and devastated all the shores. The river abounds in
large, fertile islands, the homes of fishermen and stalwart canoemen,
who carry their products to clearings on the shores, and there exchange
them for the inland products. This makes the shore clearings kind of
market-places——sometimes peopled and sometimes deserted.

[Illustration: A BONGO CONCERT.]

In the distance a fleet of canoes is sighted, bearing down on the
steamers. Are they the hostile Bahunga? The _En Avant_ is sent forward on
a reconnoissance, and soon makes out the fleet to consist of a thousand
canoes, extending a mile and a half in length. Five men to a canoe gave
a force of 5,000 men, an army of sufficient size to overwhelm a hundred
such tiny steamers as composed the Stanley flotilla. A storm arose,
accompanied by vivid lightning and heavy thunder shocks. The elements
cleared the river of all fragile barks and left the steamers to their

The old town of Mawembé came into view. It was not such as Stanley
had mapped it, but a burned and nearly deserted spot. The Arab slave
merchant had evidently penetrated thus far, and these ashes were the
marks of his cruelty. Another town, higher up, and entirely in ashes,
proved the sad conjecture to be true, for before it sat at least 200
woe-begone natives, too abject in their desolation to even affect
curiosity at the approaching steamers. On being hailed, they told the
pitiful tale of how a strange people, like those in the steamers, and
wearing white clothes, had come upon them in the night, slaughtered their
people, and carried off their women and children. The fleet of canoes,
seen among the islands below, contained their own people, gathered for
protection, forced to live on the islands in the day-time and to go
ashore at night for food. All this had happened but eight days before,
and the marauders had retreated up the river in the direction of Stanley

A few miles above, the charred stakes, upright canoes, poles of huts,
scorched banana groves and prostrate palms indicated the ruins of the
site of Yavunga, the twelfth devastated town and eighth community passed
since leaving the mouth of the Aruwimi. Opposite Yavunga were the Yaporo,
a populous tribe, but now stricken by fire, sword and famine as were
their brothers. These had charged on Stanley six years before, but they
were now in no mood to dispute his way.

Floating by is an object which attracts attention. A boat-hook is thrown
over, and to it clings the forms of two women bound together by a cord.
The ghastly objects are raised, and a brief inspection shows that they
could not have been drowned more than twelve hours before. The steamers
push on, round a point, and in the distance appear white objects. A
glass is brought to bear, and they prove to be the tents of the Arab
thieves. They are from Nyangwé, above the Falls, the capital of Tippoo
Tib’s empire, unholy conquest from the Manyuema people, founded in flame,
murder and kidnapping. The camp was palisaded and the banks were lined
with canoes, evidence that the marauders had managed somehow to pass the
Falls in force. The first impulse of Stanley was to attempt a rescue and
wreak a deserved vengeance on these miscreants. But on second thought,
his was a mission of peace, and he was without authority to administer
justice. He represented no constituted government, but was on a mission
to found a government. To play the _rolé_ of judge or executioner in
such an emergency might be to defeat all his plans and forever leave
these wretches without a strong arm to cling to in time of future need.
Had he come upon an actual scene of strife and burning, it would have
been his to aid the weaker party, but now the law of might must have its
way, till a sturdier justice than was at his disposal could come to tread
in majesty along those dark forest aisles.

And now what a meeting and greeting there was! The steamers signalled the
arrival of strangers. A canoe put out from the shore and hailed in the
language of the Eastern coast. Both sides understood that the meeting was
one of peace. The steamers made for shore below the tents, and a night
encampment was formed. Soon Stanley’s Zanzibaris were shaking hands with
the Manyuema slaves of Abed bin Salim, who constituted the band that had
been ravaging the country to obtain slaves and ivory. They had been out
for sixteen months, and for eleven months had been raiding the Congo.
The extent of country they had plundered was larger than Ireland, and
contained a population of 1,000,000 souls. They numbered 300 men, armed
with shot-guns and rifles, and their retinue of domestic slaves and women
doubled their force. Their camp, even then, was on the ruins of the town
of Yangambi, which had fallen before their torches, and many of whose
people were prisoners on the spot where they were born.

Stanley took a view of the stockade in which they had confined their
human booty. This is the horrible story as he writes it:

“The first general impressions are that the camp is much too densely
peopled for comfort. There are rows upon rows of dark nakedness, relieved
here and there by the white dresses of the captors. There are lines or
groups of naked forms upright, standing or moving about listlessly;
naked bodies are stretched under the sheds in all positions; naked legs
innumerable are seen in the perspective of prostrate sleepers; there
are countless naked children, many were infants, forms of boyhood and
girlhood, and occasionally a drove of absolutely naked old women, bending
under a basket of fuel, or cassava tubers, or bananas, who are driven
through the moving groups by two or three musketeers. In paying more
attention to details, I observe that mostly all are fettered; youths
with iron rings around their necks, through which a chain like one of
our boat-anchor chains is rove, securing the captives by twenties. The
children over ten are secured by three copper rings, each ringed leg
brought together by the central ring, which accounts for the apparent
listlessness of movement I observed on first coming in presence of the
curious scene. The mothers are secured by shorter chains, around whom
their respective progeny of infants are grouped, hiding the cruel iron
links that fall in loops or festoons over mamma’s breasts. There is not
one adult man-captive amongst them.

“Besides the shaded ground strewn over so thickly by the prostrate and
upright bodies of captives, the relics of the many raids lie scattered
or heaped up in profusion everywhere, and there is scarcely a square
foot of ground not littered with something, such as drums, spears,
swords, assegais, arrows, bows, knives, iron ware of native make of
every pattern, paddles innumerable, scoops and balers, wooden troughs,
ivory horns, whistles, buffalo and antelope horns, ivory pestles, wooden
idols, beads of wood, berries, scraps of fetishism, sorcerers’ wardrobes,
gourds of all sizes, nets, from the lengthy seine to the small hand-net;
baskets, hampers, shields as large as doors (of wood or of plaited
rattan), crockery, large pots to hold eight gallons, down to the child’s
basin; wooden mugs, basins, and mallets; grass cloth in shreds, tatters
and pieces; broken canoes, and others half-excavated; native adzes,
hatchets, hammers, iron rods, etc., etc. All these littering the ground,
or in stacks and heaps, with piles of banana and cassava peelings, flour
of cassava, and sliced tubers drying, make up a number of untidy pictures
and details, through all of which, however, prominently gleam the eyes of
the captives in a state of utter and supreme wretchedness.

“Little perhaps as my face betrayed my feelings, other pictures would
crowd upon the imagination; and after realizing the extent and depth
of the misery presented to me, I walked about as in a kind of dream,
wherein I saw through the darkness of the night the stealthy forms of the
murderers creeping towards the doomed town, its inmates all asleep, and
no sounds issuing from the gloom but the drowsy hum of chirping cicadas
or distant frogs——when suddenly flash the light of brandished torches;
the sleeping town is involved in flames, while volleys of musketry lay
low the frightened and astonished people, sending many through a short
minute of agony to that soundless sleep from which there will be no
waking. I wished to be alone somewhere where I could reflect upon the
doom which has overtaken Bandu, Yomburri, Yangambi, Yaporo, Yakusu,
Ukanga, Yakonda, Ituka, Yaryembi, Yaruche, populous Isangi, and probably
thirty scores of other villages and towns.

“The slave-traders admit they have only 2,300 captives in this fold,
yet they have raided through the length and breadth of a country larger
than Ireland, bearing fire and spreading carnage with lead and iron.
Both banks of the river show that 118 villages and 43 districts have
been devastated, out of which is only educed this scant profit of 2,300
females and children, and about 2,000 tusks of ivory! The spears, swords,
bows, and the quivers of arrows show that many adults have fallen. Given
that these 118 villages were peopled only by 1,000 each, we have only a
profit of two per cent.; and by the time all these captives have been
subjected to the accidents of the river voyage to Kirundu and Nyangwé, of
camp-life and its harsh miseries, to the havoc of small-pox and the pests
which miseries breed, there will only remain a scant one per cent. upon
the bloody venture.

“They tell me, however, that the convoys already arrived at Nyangwé with
slaves captured in the interior have been as great as their present band.
Five expeditions have come and gone with their booty of ivory and slaves,
and these five expeditions have now completely weeded the large territory
described above. If each expedition has been as successful as this, the
slave-traders have been enabled to send 5,000 women and children safe to
Nyangwé, Kirundu and Vibondo, above the Stanley Falls. Thus 5,000 out
of an assumed million will be at the rate of a half per cent., or five
slaves out of 1,000 people.

“This is poor profit out of such large waste of life, for originally we
assume the slaves to have mustered about 10,000 in number. To obtain the
2,300 slaves out of the 118 villages they must have shot a round number
of 2,500 people, while 1,300 more died by the wayside, through scant
provisions and the intensity of their hopeless wretchedness. How many are
wounded and die in the forest or droop to death through an overwhelming
sense of their calamities, we do not know; but if the above figures are
trustworthy, then the outcome from the territory with its million of
souls is 5,000 slaves obtained at the cruel expense of 33,000 lives! And
such slaves! They are females, or, young children who cannot run away,
or who with youthful indifference, will soon forget the terrors of their
capture! Yet each of the very smallest infants has cost the life of a
father and perhaps his three stout brothers and three grown-up daughters.
An entire family of six souls would have been done to death to obtain
that small, feeble, useless child!

“These are my thoughts as I look upon the horrible scene. Every second
during which I regard them the clink of fetters and chains strikes upon
my ears. My eyes catch sight of that continual lifting of the hand to
ease the neck in the collar, or as it displays a manacle exposed through
a muscle being irritated by its weight or want of fitness. My nerves are
offended with the rancid effluvium of the unwashed herds within this
human kennel. The smell of other abominations annoys me in that vitiated
atmosphere. For how could poor people, bound and riveted together by
twenties, do otherwise than wallow in filth? Only the old women are taken
out to forage. They dig out the cassava tuber, and search for the banana,
while the guard, with musket ready, keenly watches for the coming of the
vengeful native. Not much food can be procured in this manner, and what
is obtained is flung down in a heap before each gang, to at once cause
an unseemly scramble. Many of these poor things have been already months
fettered in this manner, and their bones stand out in bold relief in the
attenuated skin, which hangs down in thin wrinkles and puckers. And yet
who can withstand the feeling of pity so powerfully pleaded for by those
large eyes and sunken cheeks?

“What was the cause of all this vast sacrifice of human life——of all
this unspeakable misery? Nothing but the indulgence of an old Arab’s
‘wolfish, bloody, starved and ravenous instincts.’ He wished to obtain
slaves to barter away to other Arabs, and having weapons——guns and
gunpowder——enough, he placed them in the hands of three hundred slaves,
and despatched them to commit murder wholesale, just as an English
nobleman would put guns in the hands of his guests and permit them to
slaughter the game upon his estate. If we calculate three quarts of
blood to each person who fell during the campaign of murder, we find that
this one Arab caused to be shed 2,850 gallons of human blood, sufficient
to fill a tank measurement of 460 cubic feet, quite large enough to have
drowned him and all his kin!”

Nyangwé, above mentioned, is an important market-town on the Congo,
some distance above Stanley Falls, and the capital of the undefined
possessions of which Tippoo Tib holds sway. Livingstone says he has
seen fully 3,000 people at the Nyanwe market of a clear day, anxious
to dispose of their fish, fruits, vegetables and fowls. Many of them
had walked twenty-five miles, bearing their baskets, heavily laden with
produce, and some had come even further in canoes. On one occasion a riot
broke out, instigated either by jealousy among the surrounding tribes
or by the Arab slave-dealers for the purpose of making captures. Three
burly fellows began to fire their guns into the throng of women, who
hastily abandoned their wares and dashed for the canoes. The panic was
so great that the canoes could not be manned and pushed into the river.
The frantic women, fired into continually from the rear, leaped and
scrambled over the boats and jumped wildly into the river, preferring the
chances of a long swim to an island rather than inevitable destruction on
the shore. Many of the wounded wretches threw up their hands in despair
ere they reached mid-stream, and sank to rise no more. Rescuing canoes
put out into the water, and many were thus saved; but one poor woman
refused to be rescued, saying she would take her chances of life in the
water rather than return to be sold as a slave. The Arabs estimate the
slaughter that day at 400 souls.

Stanley now fully understood the meaning of all he had heard below of
the terrible visitations of these banditti——of the merciless character
of the Bahunga, which name they had misunderstood, and of the desire of
the dwellers on the lower waters that he should ascend the Congo, thereby
hoping that all the whites would destroy one another in the clash which
seemed inevitable. After an exchange of gifts with these cut-throats and
the loan of an interpreter to speak with the people at the Falls, the
steamers departed from a scene which nature had made beautiful, but which
the hand of man had stained with crime and blood. The Congo here has
bluffy, picturesque shores on the one side, and on the other lowlands
adapted for sugar-cane, cotton, rice and maize.


Some critics of Stanley have expressed wonder at his failure to assert
his usual heroism when made to witness these Arab barbarities while
ascending the Congo. They think he should have attacked and driven
off these thieves and murderers, no matter what the result might have
been to himself and his enterprise. The same, or a similar class of
critics, think that when he was making his last journey up the Congo
and the Aruwimi in search of Emin Pasha, he showed entirely too much
consideration for the Arab marauders, and especially for that cunning and
depraved official, Tippoo Tib, whom he recognized as governor at Nyangwé.

Despite what are regarded by some impulsive people as the higher claims
of humanitarianism, we are perfectly willing to trust to Mr. Stanley’s
sense of right as modified by the exigencies of a situation about which
no one else can know as much as himself. That situation was altogether
new and peculiar on both his ascents of the Congo in behalf of the Congo
Free State, and in search of Emin Pasha. In the first instance he bore a
commission from a higher power, the International Commission, whose agent
he was. He had instructions to do certain things and to leave others
undone. To provoke hostilities with those he met, to quarrel and fight,
except in self-preservation, were not only things foreign to his mission,
as being sure to defeat it, but were expressly forbidden to him. Conquest
was no part of the new policy of the Congo Free State, but its foundation
was peace and free concession by all the tribes within its boundaries.
Time will vindicate his leniency in the midst of such scenes as he was
forced to witness at the mouth of the Aruwimi and on the Congo above,
during his first ascent of the river.

And the same will prove true of his second ascent. To be sure, he was on
a different mission and had greater freedom of action, but he knew well,
from former experience, the character of the peoples upon the two great
rivers near their jurisdiction. And if any events ever proved the wisdom
of the steps which a man took, those surely did which clustered about
and composed the eventful, if melancholy, history of Stanley’s “Rear
Guard” on the Aruwimi. Several correspondents, some of whom accompanied
Stanley on his two up-river journeys, and others who have been over the
ground, have written fully of the Aruwimi situation, and their views are
valuable, though space forbids more than a condensation of them here.

A fatal river, say they all, was the Aruwimi for Stanley. It was so in
1877. 1883 served to recall regretful memories of his canoe descent, and
introduced him to sadder scenes than he had ever occasioned or witnessed.
The details of the deserted and blackened camp of his “Rear Guard” on
the Emin Pasha Relief Expedition will prove to be more tragic than any
which went before. It was close to the confluence of the Aruwimi with the
Congo, as narrated elsewhere in this volume, that Stanly was compelled,
in 1877, to storm a native village; and, as we have just seen, when
he passed the spot again in 1883, what wonder that the dusky warriors
reassembled to receive him! Round the bend “where the great affluent
gaped into view,” the river was thronged with war-canoes, and on the
banks stood the villages of Basongo and Mokulu, where Stanley’s ancient
foes resided. In fantastic array appeared long lines of fully armed
warriors——a land force supporting the fighting men afloat. How, aided
by a picturesque and showy interpreter, with a voice as powerful as his
eloquence, Stanley, on this latter occasion, appeased their warlike ardor
and made them friends, has just been told in these pages.

The reader will understand, however, from the number of the force
against him and the ferocious character of the tribes, why Stanley was
so careful when forming his latest camp on the Aruwimi, to have it well
stockaded and efficiently sentinelled. The local natives had not only the
incentive of their previous defeat by Stanley to keep their hostility
alive, but they had had meanwhile some bitter experiences of the Arab
raider. They are splendid races of men, the tribes of the Mokulu and the
Basoko, picturesque in their yellow war-paint, their barbaric shields
and decorative headdresses. They are skilled workmen. Their paddles are
beautifully carved, their spears and knives artistic and of dexterous
shapeliness. They have also broadswords, and in a general way their
weapons are of wonderful temper and sharpness. Now and then the Arab
raiders find their work of massacre and plunder a hot business among
such natives as these; but the advantage of the rifle is, of course,
tremendous, and can only have one result. The Arabs do not, however,
always have it entirely their own way. They leave both dead and wounded
sometimes in the hands of the enemy, who frequently condemn both to the
pot, and make merry, no doubt, over their grilled remains.

Among the many hardships of the Aruwimi camp, established by Stanley
for his “Rear Guard,” on his latest upward trip, and left under Major
Barttelot, was the uncontrollable character of the Manyema carriers and
escort. These people have for many years been the slave-hunting allies
of the Arabs——their jackals, their cheetahs; and the Stanley camp had
actually to be spectators of the attack and raiding of a native village,
opposite their own quarters, on the other side of the river. It was
towards night when the onslaught began. The sudden sound of the warlike
drums of the surprised natives came booming across the water, followed by
the fierce rattle of the Arab musketry. Dark figures and light were soon
mixed together in the fray. The natives fought bravely——but they fell
rapidly before the rifle. Pelted with the deadly hail of shot, they were
soon vanquished. Then from hut to hut the flames of ruin began to spread,
and in the lurid light women and children were marched forth to the
slave-hunter’s stockade——some to be ransomed next day by the remainder
of the ivory the natives had successfully hidden; others probably to be
passed on from hand to hand until they eventually reached a slave-dealing
market. And all this the officers and comrades of Mr. Stanley had the
humiliation to witness without daring to interfere——not from any fear of
losing their lives in the defence of the weaker——a death which has been
courted by thousands of brave men on land and sea——but for reasons of
policy. They were not there to protect the natives of the Aruwimi from
Arab raiders, but to follow Mr. Stanley with the stores necessary for
the success of his expedition. Nor is it likely that the force under
Major Barttelot would have obeyed him if he had desired to intervene.
Mr. Stanley himself more than once in his African experience has had to
shut his eyes to Arab aggression and cruelty, although his influence
with Tippoo Tib has no doubt paved the way for the realization of his
humane ambition in the matter of slavery. From their stockade and on
board their launch at Yambuya, Barttelot and his comrades could see the
woefully unequal warfare on the raided village, and there is no need of
the assurance that their hearts beat high with indignation and a desire
to take a hand in it. Moreover, these lawless brutalities practiced
upon the natives made the difficulties of the camp all the greater, not
only affecting the dangers of the advance, but increasing the perils of
the way to the Falls, as was experienced by Ward on his travels to and
fro——his “aimless journeys” Mr. Stanley has called them, but undertaken
nevertheless by order of Ward’s superior officer, Major Barttelot.

Whether or not the Arabs of the camp or the Manyuemas had a share in
the tragedy on the other side of the river is a question perhaps of no
serious moment; but confessions were made to Ward which rather tend to
show that the Arabs, while waiting for the expected advance, fulfilled
other engagements on the river. “I went to Selim’s camp to-day,” writes
Mr. Ward in one of his private letters, “and they told me that two more
of their men (Arabs) had been caught and eaten by the natives whose
village they had raided and burnt some weeks ago.” The same correspondent
again writes: “This morning some of the raiders came down from up-river
with news of the defeat of ten of their number, cut to pieces by the
natives, who sought refuge in their canoes above the rapids.” Selim and
his men started off in pursuit, and returned at night lamenting that
they had killed only two of the natives. On the next day he told Ward
that where his men had fallen he found their fingers tied in strings to
the scrub of the river-bank, and some cooking-pots containing portions
of their bones. What a weary time it was waiting, and with only this
kind of incident to ruffle the monotony of it——waiting for the promised
carriers that did not come——waiting for news of Stanley that only came
in suggestions of disaster! It is hardly a matter of surprise that the
camp began to fear the worst. Their own experiences of the broken word
of Tippoo Tib and the utter unreliability and ferocity of a portion of
their force might well give a pessimistic tone to their contemplation of
the awful possibilities of Stanley’s march. Every omen of the Aruwimi
was unfavorable to success; and they must have been terribly impressed
by such a scene as that which cast its murderous light upon the river
not long previously to the forward march, with the assassination of the
commander and the eventual dispersion of the rear-guard.

The above refers to Stanley’s Emin Pasha expedition, details of which are
given further on. But it is introduced here as showing what he had to
contend with every time he struck the confluence of the two great rivers,
and how difficult it was for him to pursue any other policy than he did,
as it is a bewildering spot in nature, and in its human forces, so it is
in its diplomancy.

One of the writers above mentioned goes on to discuss the question of
cannibalism whose existence on the Upper Congo, and in other parts
of Africa, has been asserted by correspondents. He says his own
description of these practices on the Aruwimi and the Congo are in no
way connected with the reports which are criticised in Mr. Stanley’s
letter from Msalala, on Lake Victoria, in August 1889. Mr. Ward in
none of his letters has ever mentioned or suggested that the Manyuemas
were cannibals, or in any way justified the extraordinary statement
of the Rev. William Brooke in the _Times_ to the effect that it was
common in the Manyuema camp to see “human hands and feet sticking out
of cooking-pots.” This is evidently a canard. Perhaps it would be well
for Mr. Brooke to give his authorities, since Mr. Stanley asks who they
are that have seen these extraordinary sights. The Manyuemas are a
fierce race; but, personally, Mr. Stanley has found them loyal and true
to his service, and they are not cannibals, so far as I can learn. The
instances of cannibalism mentioned in letters from the Aruwimi camp refer
to the natives of the district outside the camp, and against whom the
camp was fortified. But if Mr. Brooke has been misled, so also has Mr.
Stanley in regard to the report he seems to have found in his bundles
of newspaper cuttings to the effect that an execution of a woman was
delayed by Jameson or Barttelot in order that a photographer might make
ready his apparatus for taking a negative of the incident. This gruesome
anecdote does not belong to Africa at all; it comes from a different part
of the world altogether; was discussed in Parliament as an allegation
made against an English Consul; and turned out to be either untrue or a
gross exaggeration. When Mr. Stanley has learnt all that was said and
conjectured about his doings in the long intervals of the silence and
mystery that enshrouded him he will find less and less material for
serious criticism in the other packets of press extracts he may yet have
to unfold: but he need hardly be told that those who knew him and those
who have trusted him would not, whatever happened, be led into thinking
for a moment that he would break his promise or neglect his duty.

Stanley’s upward bound steamers now pass several devastated districts
which in 1877 were peopled by ferocious beings ready with their canoes
to sweep down upon his descending flotilla. At length the island tribe
of the Wenya is reached. These are expert fishermen, and had been left
unharmed by the Arabs,——and for policy sake too, since their acquaintance
with Stanley Falls had been turned to practical account. Their knowledge
of the intricate channels had enabled them to pilot the Arab canoes down
over the obstructions and return them in the same way, the owners making
the portage afoot.

Here the steamers were at the foot of Stanley Falls. These Falls consist
of seven distinct cataracts extending over a distance of fifty-six
miles. The lower or seventh cataract is simply a rough interruption to
navigation for a distance of two miles. Above this is a navigable stretch
of twenty-six miles, when the sixth cataract is reached. This, on the
left side, is an impassable fall, but on the right is a succession of
rapids. From the sixth to the fifth cataract is a twenty-two mile stretch
of navigable water. The fifth, fourth, third, second and first cataracts
come in quick succession, and within a space of nine miles. They appear
to be impassable, but the fact that the natives manage to pass the Arab
canoes up and down them proves that there are channels which are open to
light craft when dexterously handled.

The width of the Congo at the seventh cataract is 1330 yards, divided
into several broken channels by islands and rocks. The inhabitants of
the islands above and below are skillful fishermen belonging to two or
three different tribes. They obstruct even the swiftest channels with
poles from which are appended nets for catching fish and these are
visited daily in their canoes, over waters of clashing swiftness and ever
threatening peril. Portions of their catch they use for food, the rest
is converted into smoked food with which they buy women and children
slaves, canoes and weapons. They are impregnably situated as to enemies.
Their villages are scenes of industry. Long lines of fish-curers may be
seen spreading fish on the platforms; old men weave nets and sieves;
able-bodied men are basket makers and implement makers of various
fantastic designs; the women prepare meal and bread, etc., or make
crockery; the watermen are skillful canoe builders.

[Illustration: 1: KNIFE-SHEATH. 2: BASKET. 3: WOODEN BOLSTER. 4:

This was the spot upon which Stanley desired to erect a trading station
and these were the people with whom he was to negotiate for a possession.
He had no fears of the result, for it was evident that the Arabs and the
half-castes of Nyangwe, beyond, would find advantage in a station at
which they could obtain cloth, guns, knives and all articles of European
manufacture at a much cheaper rate than from the Eastern coast. A palaver
was opened with the assembled chiefs, in which Stanley was formally
received and stated his object. Receptions by African chiefs are always
very formal. Altogether, they are not uninteresting. Livingstone mentions
one with King Chitapangwa, in which he was ushered into an enormous
hut where the dignitary sat before three drummers and ten more men with
rattles in their hands. The drummers beat fearfully on their drums,
and the rattlers kept time, two of them advancing and retreating in a
stooping posture, with their rattles near the ground, as if doing the
chief obeisance, but still keeping time with the others. After a debate
of three days duration the chiefs came to terms and ceded sovereignty
over the islands and adjacent shores, with the right to build and trade.
The large island of Wané Rusari was selected as the site of the station
and a clearing was made for building. The question of a supply of
vegetable food was settled by Siwa-Siwa, an inland chief, who promised
to make the garrison his children and guaranteed them plenty of garden
products. Binnie, engineer of the _Royal_, a plucky little Scotchman of
diminutive stature, was appointed chief of the new Stanley Falls Station,
and left in full authority. The boat’s crews cleared four acres of ground
for him, and furnished him with axes, hoes, hammers, nails, flour,
meats, coffee, tea, sugar, cloths, rods, beads, mugs, pans, and all the
etceteras of a mid-African equipment. He was given thirty one armed men
and plenty of ammunition. Then with full instructions as to his duty he
was left to the care of Providence.

On December 10th the steamers began their return journey, having reached
the full geographic limit marked out by the Brussels Committee. The
return was to be signalized by obtaining the protectorship of the
districts intervening between the stations thus far established on the
Congo, so that the authority of the new State should be unbroken from
Vivi to Stanley Falls. But this work, on second thought, could well
be left to others with more time at their disposal than had Stanley.
Therefore the steamers, taking advantage of the current, and bearing ten
selected men of the native tribes about Stanley Falls, each in possession
of three ivory tusks, made a speedy downward trip.

Tribe after tribe was passed, some of which had not been seen on the
ascent, because the steamers were constantly seeking out new channels.
Whenever it was deemed politic, stops were made and treaties entered
into. All on board suffered much from the river breezes, heightened
by the velocity of the steamers. These breezes checked perspiration
too suddenly, and some severe prostrations occurred. By Christmas
the flotilla was back to Iboko, where thieving was so rampant as to
necessitate the seizure of one of the offenders and his imprisonment in a
steamer. The chief, Kokoro, came alongside in a canoe to commend Stanley
for ridding the tribe of a fellow who could bring such disgrace upon it;
and he was really very earnest in his morality till he looked in upon the
prisoner and found it was his son. Then there was lamentation and offers
to buy the boy back. Stanley’s terms were a restitution of the stolen
articles, and these not being met, he sailed away with the offender,
promising to return in ten days to insist upon his conditions.


The populous districts of Usimbi and Ubengo were passed. At Ukumiri
the whole population came out to greet the steamers, as it did at
Bungata and Uranga. As many of these places had not been visited on
the upward journey, it was manifest that word of the treaties and the
impression made were being gradually and favorably disseminated by the
canoe-traders. Equator Station was found in a flourishing condition. It
was January 1st, 1884, when the steamers began an upward journey again to
Iboko, in order to keep faith with Kokoro by returning his son. The old
chief, Mata Bwyki, was indignant at the seizure of one of his subjects,
but seeing that Stanley had returned and was acquainted with the tribal
custom that a thief could be held till the stolen goods were restored,
he fell in with his idea of justice, and went so far as to insist on a
return of the stolen articles, or else the imprisonment which Stanley had
inflicted. This attitude resulted in a restoration of the property and
the temporary shame of the culprits.

Again the steamers arrived at Equator Station, where the commandant had a
harrowing tale to tell of how the neighboring Bakuti had lost their chief
and had come to the station to buy the soldier laborers to the extent of
fifty, thinking they were slaves, in order that they might sacrifice them
over the dead chieftain’s grave. It is needless to say that they were
driven out of the station and given to understand that rites so horrid
were not sanctioned by civilized people. But they succeeded in getting
fourteen slaves elsewhere, and had them ready for execution on the day
of burial. Some of the garrison went out to witness the cruel rite. They
found the doomed men kneeling, with their arms bound behind them. Near
by was a tree with a rope dangling from it. One of the captives was
selected, and the rope was fastened round his neck. The tree, which had
been bent down by the weight of several men, was permitted to assume its
natural position, and in doing so it carried the victim off his feet.
The executioner approached with a short, sharp falchion, and striking
at the neck, severed the head from the body. The remaining captives
were dispatched in similar manner. Their heads were boiled and the skin
was taken off, in order that the skulls might ornament the poles around
the grave. The soil saturated with their blood was buried with the dead
chief, and the bodies were thrown into the Congo. Revolting as it all
was, there was no preventive except the rifles, and they would have meant

On January 13th the steamers left Equator Station and soon arrived at
Usindi, where the guide, Yumbila, was paid and dismissed. The next day
Lukolela was reached, where some progress at station building had gone
on, and a healthy condition prevailed. Bolobo was the next station but
arrival there revealed only a wreck. It had been burned a second time,
with all the guns, and a terrific explosion of the ammunition. The firing
was due to the freak of a man delirious with fever, who imagined that a
conflagration would provide him with a burial-scene far more honorable
than the butchery of slaves indulged in by native African potentates.
Stanley had his suspicions of the story, and could with difficulty
believe that the destruction was not due to some sinister influences
which pervaded the Bolobo atmosphere.

[Illustration: SACRIFICE OF SLAVES.]

By January 20th the flotilla was back at Kinshassa, in Stanley
Pool, where much progress had been made. In two hours they were at
Leopoldville, after an absence of 146 days and a sail of 3,050 miles.
Here everything was flourishing. The houses stood in comfortable rows,
and the gardens were bringing forth vegetables in abundance. The natives
were peaceable and ready to trade, the magazines were full, and as a
depot it was adequate for the supply of all the up-river stations.
Not so, however, with the down river stations. They were confused and
required attention. Stanley therefore prepared a caravan for Vivi.
Good-byes were given to the friends at Leopoldville, and the huge
caravan started on its long journey over hills and prairie stretches,
through dales and across streams, skirting forests here and piercing
them there, past happy, peaceful villages, too far from the Congo to
be annoyed by its ravines. The promising uplands of Ngombe are passed,
ruled by Luteté, he who in 1882 requested the gift of a white man that
he might have the pleasure of cutting his throat! But Luteté has been
transformed from a ferocious chief into quite a decent citizen. Ngombe
Station is a peaceable one, and Luteté furnishes the servants and
carriers for it, besides sending his children to the Baptist school. The
caravan then passes the Bokongo and Iyenzi people, noted for their good
behaviour. All the land is fertile and the valleys exceedingly rich.
Manyanga is reached. The station has not advanced, but is confused and
ruinous, though probably a cool $100,000 has been expended upon it by the
Association of the Congo.

Again the caravan takes up its march through the Ndunga people and
thence down into the broad valley of the Lukunga, where Stanley is
hospitably received by Mr. and Mrs. Ingham of the Livingstone Mission,
at their pretty little cottage and school, surrounded by a spacious and
well tended garden. Westward of the Lukunga are plateau lands, like
the American prairies, covered with tall grass, and capable of raising
the richest crops of wheat and corn. The plateaus passed, a descent is
made into the valley of the Kwilu, and then into those of the Luima and
Lunionzo, where the Station of Banza Manteka is reached, close by which
is a Livingstone Mission house. The prospect from the hilltops here is a
grand, embracing sight of nearly a dozen native villages whose dwellers
are devoted to the cultivation of ground-nuts.

In six hours the caravan is at Isangila, sight of which station filled
Stanley with grief, so backward had improvement been. Hundreds of bales
of stock were rotting there through neglect of the commandant to keep
the thatched roofs of the houses in repair. The country now becomes
broken and rugged, and the way obstructed with large boulders. All nature
here is a counterpart of that rough tumultuous channel where thunders
the Congo in its last furious charges to the sea. It is now five miles
to Vivi. The height is 1700 feet above the sea. The air is cool and
delicious. The natives are peaceful and industrious. There is an English
mission on those highlands, in the midst of peace and plenty.

Once at Vivi, Stanley is again grieved, for the commandants had done
nothing to make it either ornamental or useful. All is barren, like the
surrounding hills. Not a road had been cut, not a cottage thatched. The
gardens were in waste, the fences broken. The twenty-five whites there
were lazily indifferent to their surroundings, and without any energy
or vivacity except that inspired by European wine. The native sick
list was fearfully large and there was a general demand for medicines,
till Stanley made an inspection and found that they were only feigning
sickness as an excuse for idleness. Shocked at all this Stanley resolved
to move the station up and away to the larger plateau. He did so, and
left it with a reorganized staff and force, writing home, meanwhile, an
account of his work. The old and new Vivi stations were connected by a
railroad, and by June 1884, the new station had five comfortable houses,
surrounded by a freshly planted banana orchard.

On June 6th Stanley left Vivi for Boma, and took passage on the British
and African steamer _Kinsembo_, on the 10th, for an inspection of the
West African coast. The steamer stopped at Landana, a factory town,
with a French mission peeping out of a banana grove on an elevation.
It next touched at Black Point to take on produce, and then at Loango
and Mayumbo. It then entered the Gaboon country, and stopped off at the
town of that name, which is the seat of government of the French colony.
At Gaboon are several brick buildings, stores, hotels, a Catholic and
American Protestant mission, ten factories and a stone pier. It is a neat
place, and almost picturesque with its hill-dotted houses and tropical

The steamer then passed the Spanish town of Elobey, on an island of that
name, off the mouth of the Muni river. Rounding Cape St. Juan, it next
touched at the celebrated island of Fernando-Po, whose centre is a peak
10,000 feet high. The country of the Cammaroons now begins——a people even
more degraded than those of the Congo. Skirting this country, Duke Town,
or old Calabar, was reached on June 21st. This is the “Oil river” region
of Africa and 300 barrels of palm-oil awaited the _Kinsembo_. Stanley
took a trip inland to Creek Town, where is a Scottish mission. He was
struck with the similarity of what he saw to scenes on the Congo——the
same palms, density of forest, green verdure, reddish loam, hut
architecture. Only one thing differed, and that was that the residences
of the native chiefs were of European manufacture. Palm-oil has brought
them luxurious homes, modernly furnished. The ivory, oil, rubber, gum,
camwood powder, orchilla, beeswax, grains and spices would do the same
for Congo at no distant day.

The steamer next anchored in Bonny river, off the town of Bonny, where
there is a well-to-do white population and an equally well-to-do native
population, with many factories and a large traffic. These people seem
to have solved the difficult problem of African climate, and to have
dissipated much of the fear which clung to a residence on and about the
rivers which find their way to the sea in the Bight of Benin. Passing
New Calabar, anchor is cast off the Benin river, in a roadstead where
clustered ships from all the principal ports of Europe. The _Kinsembo_ is
now fully loaded and makes for Quettah and then Sierra Leone. Thence sail
was set for London. Stanley got off at Plymouth on July 29th, 1884, and
four days later presented a report of his expedition and his mission to
the king of Belgium at Ostend.

Some part of the work of founding the Congo Free State had now been done.
Stanley and his expedition had been instrumental in clearing ground,
leveling sites, reducing approaches, laying foundations and building
walls. The Bureau of the Association had contributed means and supplied
tools and mortar. But windows were now to be placed and roofs put on.
Then the fabric must be furnished and equipped within. The finishing work
could only be done through the agency of its royal founder. He took it
up where Stanley laid it down, and applied to the Governments of Europe
and America for recognition of what had been done, and for a guarantee
of such limits as were foreshadowed by the new State. The border lands
were those of France and Portugal. Treaties, fixing boundaries, were made
with these countries. Precedents were formed in the case of the Puritan
Fathers, the New Hampshire Colonists, the British East India Company, the
Liberian Republic, the Colonists of Borneo, establishing the right of
individuals to build States upon cessions of territory and surrenders of
sovereignty by chiefs and rulers who hold as original owners.

Stanley’s present to the Association was a series of treaties duly
ratified by 450 independent African chiefs, who held land by undisturbed
possession, ancient usage and divine right. They had not been intimidated
or coerced, but of their own free will and for valuable considerations
had transferred their sovereignty and ownership to the Association.
The time had now come for cementing these grants and cohering these
sovereignties, so that they should stand forth as a grand entirety and
prove worthy of the name of solid empire.

And just here occurs one of the most interesting chapters in the founding
of the Congo Free State. As it was to the Welsh-American Stanley, that
the initial work of the grand enterprise was due, so it was to his
country, the United States of America, that that work was preserved and
its results turned to the account of the world. England, with her usual
disregard of international sentiment, and in that spirit which implies
that her _ipse dixit_ is all there is of importance in diplomacy, had
made a treaty with Portugal, signed February 26th, 1884, recognizing the
mouth of the Congo as Portuguese territory, and this in the face of the
fact that the mouth of that great river had been regarded as neutral
territory, and of the further fact that for half a century England
herself had peremptorily refused to recognize Portuguese claims to it.

This action on the part of England awakened emphatic protest on the part
of France and Germany, and commercial men in England denounced it through
fear that Portuguese restrictions on trade would destroy Congo commerce
entirely. It remained for the United States to speak. Her Minister to
Belgium, General H. S. Sanford, had all along been a faithful coadjutor
of the Committee of the International Association, and he began to call
attention to the danger of the step just taken by England. He also
reminded the American people that to their philanthropy was due the Free
States of Liberia, founded at a cost of $2,500,000, and to which 20,000
Colored Americans had been sent. He also reminded them that one of their
citizens had rescued Livingstone and thereby called the attention of the
world to the Congo basin and Central African enterprise. By means of
these and other arguments he induced on Congress to examine thoroughly
the subject of the Congo Free State and Anglo-Portuguese treaty.

The Committee on Foreign relations reported to the Senate as follows:——

“It can scarcely be denied that the native chiefs have the right to make
the treaties they have made with Stanley, acting as the representative of
the International Association. The able and exhaustive statements of Sir
Travis Twiss, the eminent English jurist, and of Prof. Arntz, the no less
distinguished Belgian publicist, leave no doubt upon the question of the
legal capacity of the African International Association, in view of the
law of nations, to accept any powers belonging to these native chiefs and
governments, which they may choose to delegate or cede to them.

“The practical question to which they give an affirmative answer, for
reasons which appear to be indisputable, is this: Can independent chiefs
of several tribes cede to private citizens the whole or part of their
State, with the sovereign rights which pertain to them, conformably to
the traditional customs of the country?

“The doctrine advanced in this proposition, and so well sustained by
these writers, accords with that held by the Government of the United
States, that the occupants of a country, at the time of its discovery by
other and more powerful nations, have the right to make the treaties for
its disposal, and that private persons when associated in such a country
for self protection, or self government, may treat with the inhabitants
for any purpose that does not violate the laws of nations.”

After a patient investigation of all the facts bearing upon the Congo
question, the United States Senate passed a resolution, April 10th,
1884, authorizing the President to recognize the International African
Association as a governing power on the Congo River. This recognition by
the United States was a new birth for the Association, whose existence
had been menaced by England’s treaty with Portugal. The European powers,
whose protest had thus far been impotent, now ably seconded the position
taken by this country, and the result was a re-action in English
sentiment, which bade fair to secure such modification or interpretation
of the Portuguese treaty as would secure to the Congo Free State the
outlet of the Congo River.

A conference of the nations interested in the new State, and the trade
of the Congo, was called at Berlin, November 15, 1884. The German
Empire, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, France, Great Britain, Italy,
Portugal, Russia, Sweden and Norway, Turkey and the United States, were
represented. Prince Bismarck formally opened the Conference by declaring
that it had met to solve three problems.

(1) The free navigation, with freedom of trade on the River Congo.

(2) The free navigation of the River Niger.

(3) The formalities to be observed for valid annexation of territory in
future on the African continent.

The above propositions opened up a wide discussion. It was wonderful
to see the development of sentiment respecting the power of the
International Association and its territorial limits in Africa. England
could not stand discussion of her rights on the Niger, and the better
to protect them, or rather to withdraw them from the arena of debate,
she gave full recognition to the International Association. Germany and
Austria both recognized the flag of the Association. France treated with
the Association respecting the boundaries of her possessions on the
north. Portugal followed with a treaty by which the Association obtained
the left, or south bank of the Congo from the sea to the Uango-Ango.
All the other powers present recognized the Association and signed the
Convention with it.

Now for the first time in history there was a Congo Free State _de jure_
and _de facto_. It had legal recognition and rights, and took its place
among the empires of the world. Geographically it had bounds, and these
are they:

A strip of land at the mouth of the Congo, 22 miles long, extending from
Banana Point to Cabo Lombo.

All of the north or right bank of the Congo as far as the Cataract of
Ntombo Mataka, three miles above Manyanga Station, with back country
inland as far as the Chilonga river.

All of the south bank of the Congo to the Uango-Ango rivulet.

From the said rivulet to the latitude of Nokki, thence east along that
parallel to the Kwa river, thence up the Kwa to S. Lat. 6°, thence up the
affluent of the Kwa, Lubilash, to the water-shed between the Congo and
Zambesi, which it follows to Lake Bangweola.

From the eastern side of Bangweola the line runs north to Lake
Tanganyika, and follows its western shore to the Rusizi affluent, then
up this affluent to E. long. 30°, as far as the water-shed, between the
Congo and Nile.

Thence westward to E. long. 17°, and along that meridian to the Likona

The Berlin conference not only created a mighty State and sanctioned its
powers and boundaries, but it confirmed unto France a noble territory on
the north of the Congo equal to any in Africa for vegetable production
and mineral resources, having an Atlantic coast line of 800 miles, giving
access to eight river basins, with 5,200 miles of navigable water, and a
total area of 257,000 square miles.

It also settled the boundaries of Portugal on the Atlantic coast, giving
to her possessions a frontage of 995 miles, and an area larger than
France, Belgium, Holland and Great Britain combined, rich in pastoral
lands, oil and rubber forests, minerals and agricultural resources,
enough to give each one of her people a farm of 33 acres.

The territory embraced in the Congo Free State, and dedicated to free
commerce and enterprise, is equal to 1,600,000 square miles. The same
privileges were extended to within one degree of the East Coast of
Africa, subject to rights of Portugal and Zanzibar. This would make a
privileged commercial zone in Central Africa of 2,400,000 square miles in

While there are at present but few legitimate traders within this vast
area to be benefited by these liberal endowments of the Congo Free
State, the wisdom of setting the territory apart and dedicating it to
international uses is already apparent. The European powers are in hot
chase after landed booty in Central Africa. England is flying at the
throat of Portugal, is jealous of France and Germany, is snubbing Italy
and is ready to rob Turkey. It is surely one of the grandest diplomatic
achievements to have rescued so important and imposing a portion of
a continent from the turmoil which has ever characterized, and is now
manifest in European greed for landed possessions.

If the European powers had been permitted to seize all the coasts of the
Continent, and the Continent itself, and to levy contributions on trade
according to their respective wills, they would have forever strangled
commercial development, except as suited their selfish ends. On the other
hand the guarantee of the Association that its large and productive
areas should be free from discrimination and oppression, would naturally
tempt enterprising spirits to venture inland and win a continent from
barbarism. The Courts of Law of the Association would be everywhere and
always open, there would be no charges on commerce except those necessary
to support the government, the liquor traffic might not be abused, a
positive prohibition would rest on the slave trade, the missionary,
without respect to denomination, would have special protection,
scientific development would be encouraged, to all these, the powers
present at the Berlin Conference gave a pledge, with these they endowed
the Congo Free State.

Stanley was one of the most conspicuous figures in this memorable
Conference. He was not a debater, nor even a participant in the ordinary
acceptation of the term, but he was questioned and cross-questioned on
every matter relating to African climatology, geography, anthropology,
mineralogy, geology, zoology, and resources, and many a point of
controversy turned on his information or judgment.

The International Association, which has in its keeping the Free Congo
State, ratified, through its President, Col. Strauch, the General Act of
the Berlin Conference, and thus made it the Constitution of the new State
in Central Africa. To the terms of this constitution the new State as
well as the powers represented at the Conference stand bound as against
the world.

The Company of the Congo, for laying and operating a railway around the
Congo cataracts, was formed under French auspices in February 1887,
and by June, the first and second contingent of engineers had left for
the Congo. When completed, the staff consisted of one director, twelve
engineers and one surgeon. A number of Houssas, from the Gold Coast,
were engaged for the mechanical work, and the whole were divided into
gangs, each with its special work to do, following each other along the
route. The work went on speedily, and the final observation was taken at
Stanley Pool, in November, 1888.

The proposed railway is to extend from a little below Vivi (Matadi), up
to which large vessels may be taken, past the long series of cataracts
to Stanley Pool. The total length of the line is to be 275 miles. On
leaving Matadi it bends away from the Congo to the southeast, and
keeps at a distance of several miles from the river till it approaches
Stanley Pool. The first sixteen miles of the route will be attended with
considerable difficulties, while the remainder of the line will be laid
under exceptionally easy conditions. It is in the first sixteen miles
that there will be any serious rock cutting and embankments, and the
expense of the construction in this part is estimated at $11,548 a mile,
while those on the remainder of the line will cost much less. In addition
to this, there will be the cost of erecting aqueducts, building bridges,
etc., all of which, it is stated, will be much greater in the first few
miles, than subsequently. On the first few miles, also, there are a few
steep inclines, but for the rest of the route the inclines are reported
to be insignificant. There are only three bridges of any size——across
the Mkesse, the Mpozo and the Kwilu——ranging from 250 feet to 340 feet;
half a dozen others from 130 feet to 190 feet; with a number very much
smaller. The fact is, the engineering difficulties in the construction of
the proposed railway are insignificant. One of the chief considerations
will be the climate. The route is situated within the rainiest region of
Africa, and unless special precautions are taken the road, especially in
the first section, will be liable to be swept away. From this point of
view alone it is very doubtful if a railway suitable for the region could
be built, so as to last, for less than $5,000,000.

The railway will be built on the narrow gauge system. The locomotives,
when loaded, will weigh thirty tons, and drag at the rate of eleven miles
per hour, an average of fifty tons. Thus one train per day each way
would, if fully loaded, represent a total of 36,000 tons per annum——far
in excess of any traffic likely to be available for many years. The
railway, if built, would tap about 7,000 miles of navigable rivers.

Evidence of the strides forward made by the Congo Free State is just now
furnished by Mr. Taunt, Commercial Agent of the United States at Boma,
in his report for 1889 to the Department of State. He says in substance
that within the last two years the Congo Free State has made a wonderful
advancement. Here is now found, where for ages has been a jungle,
inhabited only by wild beasts and wilder men, a well-equipped government.
It has its full corps of officials, its courts of law, post offices,
custom stations, a standing army of 1,500 men, well officered and
drilled, a currency of gold, silver, and copper and all the appliances of
a well-ordered government.

Boma, the seat of Government of the Congo Free State, is situated upon
the Congo, about ninety miles from its mouth. Here are the residences of
the Governor and of the lesser officials, and here are established the
Courts and the Governmental departments. The army is well distributed
at different stations along the banks of the river, and does excellent
service in policing the stream against the incursions of the Arabs.

The port of entry of the Congo Free State, is Banana settlement at the
mouth of the Congo. Four lines of steamers, British, German, Portuguese,
and French, make frequent connection between the settlements and European
ports. A Dutch line also runs a steamer to the Congo in infrequent trips.
Cable communication is already established between Europe and two points
easily accessible from the mouth of the Congo, and telegraphic connection
will doubtless, soon be made with Banana.

All these arrangements are, of course, only auxiliaries to the great
trading interests already established in the region of the Congo. In
this trade the merchants of Rotterdam lead, having stations established
for hundreds of miles both north and south of the river. During the last
two years they have penetrated even to the Upper Congo and established
trading stations at Stanley Falls, a point 1,500 miles distant from the
mouth of the river. This Company employs a large force of white agents,
and is largely interested in the raising of coffee, tobacco, cocoa, and
other products of the tropics.

Holland alone has not been allowed to occupy this rich field. French,
English, Portuguese, and Belgian capitalists have seen the advantages to
be derived from this occupation of a new soil, and have not been slow
to seize their opportunities. The last named, especially, are making
preparations for the investment of a large amount of capital in this new
and productive field.

In the Congo Free State, as thus opened to the trade of the world,
is supplied a market in which American manufacturers should be able
successfully to compete. There is a great demand for cotton goods,
canned food, cutlery, lumber, and ready-built frame houses. Manchester
has already monopolized the trade in cotton goods, which, in the further
extension of trading posts, is capable of almost indefinite expansion.
Birmingham and Sheffield supply brass wire, beads and cutlery, and
England and France now supply the demand for canned foods. It would seem
that the markets of the United States should supply a portion at least
of this great demand for manufactured articles. In the items of lumber
and canned foods surely we should be able to compete successfully with
Europe, although it would seem probable that the establishment of saw
mills upon the Congo should soon serve to do away with the demand for the
first named of these articles.

The one desideratum, without which our manufacturers cannot hope to
open up a prosperous trade with the Congo Free State, is a direct line
of steamships from Boma to some American port. Without this, the added
freights from this country to Europe for transshipment to the Congo
would, it would seem, be an insurmountable bar to a profitable trade,
however desirable such trade might be.

As has been already observed, in order to insure from the natives a loyal
observance of their promises, Stanley made a treaty with each chief along
the course of the Congo, to the general effect that, in consideration of
certain quantities of cloth to be paid them monthly, they should abstain
from acts of aggression and violence against their neighbors. The design
of these treaties was to insure peace among the tribes themselves. Other
agreements and treaties were also made, designed to secure such transfers
of their sovereignty to the International Commission, as would enable it
to organize the Congo Free State.

As these forms are novel, we give such of them as will enable a reader to
understand the preliminary steps toward the formation of this new State.

                        PRELIMINARY DECLARATION.

We, the undersigned chiefs of Nzungi, agree to recognize the sovereignty
of the African International Association, and in sign thereof, adopt
its flag (blue, with a golden star). We declare we shall keep the road
open and free of all tax and impost on all strangers arriving with the
recommendation of the agents of the above Association.

All troubles between ourselves and neighbors, or with strangers of any
nationality, we shall refer to the arbitration of the above Association.

We declare that we have not made any written or oral agreement with any
person previous to this that would render this agreement null and void.

We declare that from henceforth we and our successors shall abide by
the decision of the representatives of the Association in all matters
affecting our welfare or our possessions, and that we shall not enter
into any agreement with any person without referring all matters to the
chief of Manyanga, or the chief of Léopoldville, or act in any manner
contrary to the tenor or spirit of this agreement.


DUALLA (his x mark), of Chami, Pard.

MWAMBA (his x mark), of Makitu’s.

KEEKURU (his x mark), Chief of Nzungi.

NSEKA (his x mark), Chief of Banza Mbuba.

NZAKO (his x mark), of Banza Mbuba.

INSILA MPAKA, (his x mark), of Banza Mbuba.

ISIAKI (his x mark), Chief of Banza Mbuba.

                           FORMS OF A TREATY.

Henry M. Stanley, commanding the Expedition on the Upper Congo, acting in
the name and on behalf of the “African International Association,” and
the king and chiefs Ngombi and Mafela, having met together in conference
at South Manyanga, have, after deliberation, concluded the following
treaty, viz:——

ARTICLE I.——The chiefs of Ngombi and Mafela recognize that it is highly
desirable that the “African International Association” should, for
the advancement of civilization and trade, be firmly established in
their country. They therefore now, freely of their own accord, for
themselves and their heirs and successors forever, do give up to the said
Association the sovereignty and all sovereign and governing rights to
all their territories. They also promise to assist the said Association
in its work of governing and civilizing this country, and to use their
influence with all the other inhabitants, with whose unanimous approval
they make this treaty, to secure obedience to all laws made by said
Association, and assist by labor or otherwise, any works, improvements,
or expeditions, which the said Association shall cause at any time to be
carried out in any part of the territories.

ART. II.——The chief of Ngombi and Mafela promise at all times to join
their forces with those of the said Association, to resist the forcible
intrusion or repulse the attacks of foreigners of any nationality or

ART. III.——The country thus ceded has about the following boundaries,
viz: The whole of the Ngombi and Mafela countries, and any other
tributary to them; and the chiefs of Ngombi and Mafela solemnly affirm
that all this country belongs absolutely to them; that they can freely
dispose of it; and that they neither have already, nor will on any future
occasion, make any treaties, grants or sales of any parts of these
territories to strangers, without the permission of the said Association.
All roads and waterways running through this country, the right of
collecting tolls on the same, and all game, fishing, mining, and forest
rights, are to be the absolute property of the said Association, together
with any unoccupied lands as may at any time hereafter be chosen.

ART. IV.——The “African International Association” agrees to pay to the
chiefs of Ngombi and Mafela the following articles of merchandise, viz:
One piece of cloth per month, to each of the undersigned chiefs, besides
presents of cloth in hand; and the said chiefs hereby acknowledge to
accept this bounty and monthly subsidy in full settlement of all their
claims on the said Association.

ART. V.——The “African International Association” promises:——

1. To take from the natives of this ceded country no occupied or
cultivated lands, except by mutual agreement.

2. To promote to its utmost the prosperity of the said country.

3. To protect its inhabitants from all oppression or foreign intrusion.

4. It authorizes the chiefs to hoist its flag; to settle all local
disputes or palavers; and to maintain its authority with the natives.

Agreed to, signed and witnessed, this 1st day of April, 1884.






SONKI (his x mark), Senior Chief of Ngombi.

MAMYNPA (his x mark), Senior Chief of Mafela.

                      JOINT AGREEMENT AND TREATY.

We, the undersigned chiefs of the districts placed opposite our names
below, do hereby solemnly bind ourselves, our heirs and successors for
the purpose of mutual support and protection, to observe the following

ARTICLE I.——We agree to unite and combine together, under the name and
title of the “New Confederacy,”——that is, our respective districts, their
homes and villages shall be embraced by one united territory, to be
henceforth known as the _New Confederacy_.

ART. II.——We declare that our objects are to unite our forces and our
means for the common defence of all the districts comprised within said
territory; to place our forces and our means under such organization
as we shall deem to be best for the common good of the people and the
welfare of the Confederacy.

ART. III.——The New Confederacy may be extended by the admission of all
such districts adjoining those mentioned before, when their chiefs have
made application, and expressed their consent to the articles herein

ART. IV.——We, the people of the New Confederacy, adopt the blue flag with
the golden star in the centre for our banner.

ART. V.——The confederated districts guarantee that the treaties made
between them shall be respected.

ART. VI.——The public force of the Confederacy shall be organized at the
rate of one man out of every two men able to bear arms; of native or
foreign volunteers.

ART. VII——The organization, the armament, equipment, subsistence of this
force, shall be confided to the chief agent in Africa of the “Association
of the Upper Congo.”

To the above articles, which are the result of various conventions held
between district and district, and by which we have been enabled to
understand the common wish, we, sovereign chiefs and others of the Congo
district hereby append our names, pledging ourselves to adhere to each
and every article.


       *       *       *       *       *

The Berlin Conference.

The Berlin Conference which settled the contributions of the Congo Free
State, and secured for it the recognition of the principal civilized
nations of the world, commenced its sitting at half past two o’clock, on
the 26th of February, 1885, under the Presidency of His Highness, Prince
Bismarck. The Prince opened the closing session Conference by saying:——

“Our Conference, after long and laborious deliberations, has reached the
end of its work, and I am glad to say that, thanks to your efforts and
to that spirit of conciliation which had presided over our proceedings,
a complete accord has been come to on every point of the programme
submitted to us.

“The resolutions which we are about to sanction formally, secure to
the trade of all nations free access to the interior of the African
Continent. The guarantees by which the freedom of trade will be assured
in the Congo basin, and the whole of the arrangements embodied in the
rules for the navigation of the Congo and the Niger, are of such a nature
as to afford the commerce and industry of all nations the most favorable
conditions for their development and security.

“In another series of regulations you have shown your solicitude for the
moral and material welfare of the native population, and we may hope
that those principles, adopted in a spirit of wise moderation, will
bear fruit, and help familiarize those populations with the benefit of

“The particular conditions under which are placed the vast regions you
have just opened up to commercial enterprise, have seemed to require
special guarantee for the preservation of peace and public order. In
fact, the scourge of war would become particularly disastrous if the
natives were led to take sides in the disputes between civilized Powers.
Justly apprehensive of the dangers that such event might have for the
interest of commerce and civilization, you have sought for the means of
withdrawing a great part of the African Continent from the vicissitudes
of general politics, in confining therein the rivalry of nations to
peaceful emulation in trade and industry.

“In the same manner you have endeavored to avoid all misunderstanding and
dispute to which fresh annexations on the African coast might give rise.
The declaration of the formalities required before such annexation can
be considered effective, introduces a new rule, into public law, which
in its turn will remove many a cause of dissent and conflict from our
international relations.

“The spirit of mutual good understanding which has distinguished your
deliberations has also presided over the negotiations that have been
carried on outside the Conference, with a view to arrange the difficult
question of delimitation between the parties exercising sovereign rights
in the Congo basin, and which, by their position, are destined to be the
chief guardians of the work we are about to sanction.

“I cannot touch on this subject without bearing testimony to the noble
efforts of His Majesty, the King of the Belgians, the founder of a work
which now has gained the recognition of almost all the Powers, and which,
as it grows, will render valuable service to the cause of humanity.

“Gentlemen, I am requested by His Majesty, the Emperor and King, my
august Master, to convey to you his warmest thanks for the part each
of you has taken in the felicitous accomplishment of the work of the

“I fulfil a final duty in gratefully acknowledging what the Conference
owes to those of its members who undertook the hard work of the
Commission, notably to the Baron de Courcel and to Baron Lambermont. I
have also to thank the delegates for the valuable assistance they have
rendered us, and I include in this expression of thanks the secretaries
of the Conference, who have facilitated our deliberations by the accuracy
of their work.

“Like the other labors of man, the work of this Conference may be
improved upon and perfected, but it will, I hope, mark an advance in
the development of international relations and form a new bond of union
between the nations of the civilized world.”

       *       *       *       *       *

                General Act of the Conference Respecting
                         the Congo Free State.

                               CHAPTER I.


ARTICLE I.——The trade of all nations shall be entirely free:

1. In all territories constituting the basin of the Congo and its
affluents. The basin is bounded by the crests of adjoining basins——that
is to say, the basins of the Niari, of the Ogowé, of the Shari, and of
the Nile towards the north; by the line of the eastern ridge of the
affluents of Lake Tanganyika towards the east; by the crests of the basin
of the Zambesi and the Logé towards the south. It consequently embraces
all the territories drained by the Congo and its affluents, comprising
therein Lake Tanganyika and its eastern tributaries.

2. In the maritime zone extending along the Atlantic Ocean from the
parallel of 2° 30′ south latitude to the mouth of the Logé. The northern
limit will follow the parallel of 2° 30′ from the coast until it reaches
the geographical basin of the Congo, avoiding the basin of the Ogowe, to
which the stipulations of the present Act do not apply.

The southern limit will follow the course of the Logé up to the source
of that river, and thence strike eastwards to its junction with the
geographical basin of the Congo.

3. In the zone extending eastwards from the basin of the Congo as
limited above herein, to the Indian Ocean, from the fifth degree of
north latitude to the mouth of the Zambesi on the south; from this point
the line of demarcation will follow the Zambesi up stream to a point
five miles beyond its junction with the Shire, and continue by the
line of the ridge dividing the waters which flow towards Lake Nyassa
from the tributary waters of the Zambesi, until it joins the line of
the water-parting between the Zambesi and the Congo. It is expressly
understood that in extending to this eastern zone the principle of
commercial freedom, the Powers represented at the Conference bind only
themselves, and that the principle will apply to territories actually
belonging to some independent and sovereign state only so far as that
state consents to it. The Powers agree to employ their good officers
among the established Governments on the African coast of the Indian
Ocean, to obtain such consent, and in any case to ensure the most
favorable conditions to all nations.


All flags, without distinction of nationality, shall have free access
to all the coast of the territories above enumerated; to the rivers
which therein flow to the sea; to all the waters of the Congo and its
affluents, including the lakes; to all the canals that in the future
may be cut with the object of uniting the water-courses or the lakes
comprised in the whole extent of the territories described in Article I.
They can undertake all kinds of transport, and engage in maritime and
fluvial coasting, as well as river navigation, on the same footing as the


Goods from every source imported into these territories, under any flag
whatever, either by way of the sea, the rivers, or the land, shall pay
no taxes except such as are equitable compensation for the necessary
expenses of the trade, and which can meet with equal support from the
natives and from foreigners of every nationality.

All differential treatment is forbidden both with regard to ships and


Goods imported into these territories will remain free of all charges for
entry and transit.

The Powers reserve to themselves, until the end of a period of twenty
years, the right of deciding if freedom of entry shall be maintained or


Every Power which exercises, or will exercise, sovereign rights in the
territories above mentioned, cannot therein concede any monopoly or
privilege of any sort in commercial matters.

Foreigners shall therein indiscriminately enjoy the same treatment and
rights as the natives in the protection of their persons and goods,
in the acquisition and transmission of their property, movable and
immovable, and in the exercise of their professions.



All the Powers exercising sovereign rights, or having influence in the
said territories, undertake to watch over the preservation of the native
races, and the amelioration of the moral and material conditions of
their existence, and to co-operate in the suppression of slavery, and,
above all, of the slave trade; they will protect and encourage, without
distinction of nationality or creed, all institutions and enterprises,
religious, scientific, or charitable, established and organized for these
objects, or tending to educate the natives and lead them to understand
and appreciate the advantages of civilization.

Christian missionaries, men of science, explorers and their escorts and
collections, to be equally the object of special protection.

Liberty of conscience and religious tolerations are expressly guaranteed
to the natives as well as to the inhabitants and foreigners. The free
public exercise of every creed, the right to erect religious buildings
and to organize missions belonging to every creed, shall be subjected to
no restriction or impediment whatever.



The Convention of the Postal Union, revised at Paris, on June 1, 1878,
shall apply to the said basin of the Congo.

The Powers which there exercise, or will exercise, rights of sovereignty
or protectorate, undertake, as soon as circumstances permit, to introduce
the necessary measures to give effect to the above resolutions.



In all parts of the territory embraced in the present Declaration, where
no Power shall exercise the rights of sovereignty or protectorate, the
International Commission for the navigation of the Congo, constituted in
accordance with Article XVII, shall be intrusted with the surveillance
of the application of the principles declared and established in this

In all cases of difficulties arising, relative to the application of
the principles established by the present Declaration, the Governments
interested shall agree to appeal to the good offices of the International
Commission, leaving to it the examination of the facts which have given
rise to the difficulties.

       *       *       *       *       *

                              CHAPTER II.


                              ARTICLE IX.

In conformity with the principles of the right of natives as recognized
by the signatory Powers, the slave trade being forbidden, and
operations, which on land or sea supply slaves for the trade, being
equally held to be forbidden, the Powers, which exercise or will exercise
rights of sovereignty or influence in the territories forming the basin
of the Congo, declare that these territories shall serve neither for the
place of sale, nor the way of transit for traffic in slaves of any race
whatsoever. Each of the Powers undertakes to employ every means that it
can to put an end to the trade and to punish those who engage in it.

       *       *       *       *       *




In order to give a new guarantee of security for commerce and industry,
and to encourage by the maintenance of peace the development of
civilization in the countries mentioned in Article I, or placed under
the system of free trade, the High Parties signatory to the present
Act, and those who will accept the same, hereby undertake to respect
the neutrality of the territories or parts of the territories dependent
on the said countries, comprising therein the territorial waters, for
so long as the Powers, which exercise, or will exercise, the rights of
sovereignty or protectorate over the territories, avail themselves of the
right to proclaim them neutral, and fulfill the duties that neutrality


In cases where a Power exercising the rights of sovereignty or
protectorate in the countries as mentioned in Article I, and placed under
the system of free trade, shall be involved in war, the High Parties
signatory to the present Act, and those who will accept the same, hereby
engage to use their good officers so that the territories belonging to
that Power, and comprised within the said boundaries where free trade
exists, shall, by the mutual consent of that Power and of the other, or
others, of the belligerent parties, be held to be neutral, for so long as
the war lasts, and considered as belonging to a non-belligerent state,
the belligerent parties will then abstain from extending hostilities
into such neutralized territories as well as from using them as a base
for operations of war.


In the event of a serious disagreement originating on the subject, or
arising within the limits of the territories mentioned in Article I and
placed under the system of freedom of trade, between Powers signatory to
the present Act, or Powers accepting the same, these Powers undertake,
before appealing to arms, to have recourse to the mediation of one or
several of the friendly Powers.

Under the said circumstances the said Powers reserve to themselves the
option of proceeding to arbitration.

       *       *       *       *       *




The navigation of the Congo, without any exception of any branches or
issues of the river, is to remain entirely free for merchant shipping
of all nations in cargo or ballast, for the carriage of cargo or the
carriage of passengers. It shall be in accordance with the provisions
of the present Act of navigation, or of the regulations established in
execution of the said Act.

In the exercise of that navigation, the subjects and flags of all
nations, shall, under all circumstances, be treated on a footing of
absolute equality, as well as regards the direct navigation from the open
sea towards the interior parts of the Congo, and _vice versa_, as for
grand and petty coasting, and boat and river work all along the river.

Consequently, throughout the Congo’s course and mouth, no distinction
shall be made between the subjects of the river-side States, and those
not bordering on the river, and no exclusive privilege of navigation
shall be granted either to societies, corporations or individuals.

These provisions are recognized by the signatory Powers, as henceforth
forming part of public international law.


The navigation of the Congo shall not be subjected to any restraints or
imposts which are not expressly stipulated for in the present Act. It
shall not be burdened with any duties for harborage stoppages, depots,
breaking bulk, or putting in through stress of weather.

Throughout the length of the Congo, ships and merchandise passing along
the stream shall be subject to no transit dues, no matter what may be
their origin or destination.

There shall not be established any tolls, marine or river, based on
the fact of navigation alone, nor shall any duty be imposed on the
merchandise on board the vessels. Such taxes and duties only shall be
levied, as are of the character of remuneration for services rendered, to
the said navigation. That is to say:——

(1) Taxes of the port for the actual use of certain local establishments,
such as wharves, warehouses etc. The tariff of such taxes to be
calculated on the expenses of construction and support of the said local
establishments, and in its application to be independent of the origin of
the vessels and their cargo.

(2) Pilotage dues on sections of the river, or where it appears necessary
to establish stations of certificated pilots.

The tariff of these dues to be fixed and proportionate to the services

(3) Dues in respect of the technical and administrative expenses, imposed
in the general interest of the navigation, and comprising light-houses,
beacon, and buoyage dues.

Dues of the last description to be based on the tonnage of the ships,
according to the papers on board, and to be conformable to the
regulations in force on the Lower Danube.

The tariffs of the taxes and dues mentioned in the three preceding
paragraphs are not to admit of any differential treatment, and are to be
officially published in each port.

The Powers reserve to themselves the right, at the end of five years, by
mutual agreement, to inquire into the above-mentioned tariffs in case
they require revision.


The affluents of the Congo shall, under all circumstances, be subject to
the same regulations as the river of which they are the tributaries.

The same regulations shall apply to the lakes and canals as to the rivers
and streams in the territories defined in Article I, paragraphs 2 and 3.

Nevertheless the Powers of the International Commission of the Congo
shall not extend over the said rivers, lakes and canals, unless with the
assent of the States under whose sovereignty they are placed. It is also
understood that for the territories mentioned in Article I, paragraph
3, the consent of the sovereign States on whom these territories are
dependent remains reserved.


The roads, railways, or lateral canals, which shall be established for
the special object of supplementing the innavigability or imperfections
of the water-way in certain sections of the Congo, of its affluents and
other water-courses held to be like unto them by Article XV, shall be
considered in their capacity as means of communication as dependencies of
the river, and shall be likewise open to the traffic of all nations.

And as on the river, there shall be levied on these roads, railways and
canals only tolls calculated on the expenses of construction, maintenance
and administration, and on the profits due to the promoters.

In the assessment of these tolls, foreigners and the inhabitants of the
respective territories shall be treated on a footing of perfect equality.


An International Commission is instituted and appointed to ensure the
execution of the provisions of the present Act of Navigation.

The Powers signatory to this Act, as well as those who afterwards accept
it, shall at all times be represented on the said Commission, each by a
delegate. No delegate shall have more than one vote, even in the event of
his representing several governments.

This delegate shall be paid by his own government direct. The salaries
and allowances of the agents and servants of the International Commission
shall be charged to the proceeds of the dues levied conformably to
Article XIV, paragraphs 2 and 3.

The amounts of said salaries and allowances, as well as the number,
position and duties of the agents and servants, shall appear in the
account rendered each year to the Governments represented on the
International Commission.


The members of the International Commission, as well as the agents
nominated by them, are invested with the privilege of inviolability in
the exercise of their functions. The same guarantee shall extend to the
offices, premises and archives of the Commission.


The International Commission for the navigation of the Congo, shall
be constituted as soon as five of the signatory Powers of the present
General Act shall have nominated their delegates. Pending the
constitution of the Commission, the nomination of the delegates shall be
notified to the Government of the German Empire, by whom the necessary
steps will be taken to manage the meeting of the Commission.

The Commission will draw up, without delay, the arrangements for the
navigation, river police, pilotage and quarantine.

These regulations, as well as the tariffs, instituted by the Commission,
before being put in force, shall be submitted to the approbation of
the Powers represented on the Commission. The powers interested, shall
declare their opinion therein with the least possible delay.

Offences against these regulations shall be dealt with by the agents of
the International Commission, where it exercises its authority direct,
and in other places by the river-side Powers.

In case of abuse of power or injustice on the part of an agent or servant
of the International Commission, the individual considering himself
injured in his person or his rights, shall apply to the consular agent of
his nation. He will inquire into his complaint, and if _prima facié_, he
finds it reasonable, he shall be entitled to report it to the Commission.
On his initiative, the Commission, represented by three or fewer of its
members, shall join with him in an inquiry touching the conduct of its
agent or servant. If the Consular agent considers the decision of the
Commission as objectionable in law, he shall report to the Government,
who shall refer to the Powers represented on the Commission, and invite
them to agree as to the instructions to be given to the Commission.

                              ARTICLE XX.

The International Commission of the Congo, entrusted under the terms
of Article XVII, with insuring the execution of the present Act of
Navigation, shall specially devote its attention to:——

(1.) The indication of such works as are necessary for insuring the
navigability of the Congo, in accordance with the requirements of
international trade.

On sections of the river where no Power exercises rights of sovereignty,
the international Commission shall itself take the measures necessary for
insuring the navigability of the stream.

On sections of the river occupied by a sovereign Power, the International
Commission shall arrange with the river-side authority.

(2.) The fixing of the tariff for pilotage, and of the general tariff
of navigation dues, provided for in the second and third paragraphs of
Article XIV.

The tariffs mentioned in the first paragraph of Article XIV, shall be
settled by the territorial authority within the limits provided for in
that article.

The collection of these dues shall be under the care of the international
or territorial authority, on whose account they have been established.

3. The administration of the revenues accruing from the application of
the foregoing paragraph 2.

4. The surveillance of the quarantine establishment instituted in
compliance with Article XXIV.

5. The nomination of agents for the general service of the navigation and
its own particular servants.

The appointment of sub-inspectors shall belong to the territorial
authority over sections occupied by a Power, and to the International
Commission over the other sections of the river.

The river-side Power will notify to the International Commission the
nomination of its sub-inspectors which it shall have appointed, and this
Power shall pay their salaries.

In the exercise of its duties, as defined and limited above, the
International Commission shall not be subject to the territorial

                              ARTICLE XXI.

In the execution of its task, the International Commission shall have
recourse, in case of need, to the vessels of war belonging to the
signatory Powers of this Act, and to those which in the future shall
accept it, if not in contravention of the instructions which shall
have been given to the commanders of those vessels by their respective

                             ARTICLE XXII.

The vessels of war of the Powers signatory to the present Act which enter
the Congo are exempt from the payment of the navigation dues provided for
in paragraph 3 of Article XIV; but they shall pay the contingent pilotage
dues as well as the harbor dues, unless their intervention has been
demanded by the International Commission or its agents under the terms of
the preceding Article.

                             ARTICLE XXIII.

With the object of meeting the technical and administrative expenses
which it may have to incur, the International Commission, instituted
under Article XVII, may in its own name issue loans secured on the
revenues assigned to the said Commission.

The resolutions of the Commission regarding the issue of a loan must be
carried by a majority of two-thirds of its votes. It is understood that
the Governments represented on the Commission shall not, in any case, be
considered as assuming any guarantee nor contracting any engagement or
joint responsibility with regard to said laws, unless special treaties
are concluded amongst them to that effect.

The proceeds of the dues specified in the third paragraph of Article XIV
shall be in the first place set aside for the payment of interest and the
extinction of said loans, in accordance with the agreements entered into
with the lenders.

                             ARTICLE XXIV.

At the mouths of the Congo there shall be founded, either at the
initiation of the river-side Powers, or by the intervention of the
International Commission, a quarantine establishment, which shall
exercise control over the vessels entering and departing.

It shall be decided later on by the Powers, if any, and under what
conditions, sanitary control shall be exercised over vessels navigating
the river.


The provisions of the present Act of Navigation shall remain in force
during times of war. Consequently, the navigation of all nations, neutral
and belligerent, shall at all times be free for the purposes of trade on
the Congo, its branches, its affluents, and its mouths, as well as on the
territorial waters fronting the mouths of the river.

The traffic shall likewise remain free, notwithstanding the state of war,
on its roads, railways, lakes and canals, as mentioned in Articles XV and

The only exception to this principle shall be in cases in connection
with the transport of articles intended for a belligerent, and held in
accordance with the law of nations to be contraband of war.

All the works and establishments instituted in execution of the present
Act, particularly the offices of collection and their funds, the same as
the staff permanently attached to the service of such establishments,
shall be treated as neutral, and shall be respected and protected by the

       *       *       *       *       *

                               CHAPTER V.


                             ARTICLE XXVI.

The navigation of the Niger, without excepting any of the branches or
issues, is, and shall continue free for merchant vessels of all nations,
in cargo or ballast, conveying goods or conveying passengers. It shall
be conducted in accordance with the provisions of the present Act of
Navigation, and with the regulations established in execution of the same

In the exercise of that navigation, the subjects and flags of every
nation shall be treated, under all circumstances, on a footing of
perfect equality, as well in the direct navigation from the open sea to
the interior ports of the Niger, and _vice versa_, as for grand and petty
coasting, and in boat and river work throughout its course.

Consequently throughout the length and mouths of the Niger, there shall
be no distinction between the subjects of the riverside States, and
those of States not bordering on the river, and there shall be conceded
no exclusive privilege of navigation to any society, or corporation or

These provisions are recognised by the signatory Powers as henceforth
forming part of public international law,


The navigation of the Niger shall not be subjected to any obstacle nor
duty based only on the fact of the navigation.

It shall not be subject to any duties for harborage, stoppages, depots,
breaking bulk, or putting into port through stress of weather.

Throughout the length of the Niger, vessels and goods passing along the
stream shall not be subject to any transit dues, whatsoever may be their
origin or destination.

There shall be established no sea or river toll, based on the sole fact
of navigation, nor any duty on the goods which happen to be on board the
ships. Only such taxes and dues shall be levied as are of the nature of a
payment for services rendered to the said navigation. The tariff of these
taxes or dues shall admit of no differential treatment.


The affluents of the Niger shall in every respect be subject to the same
regulations as the river of which they are the tributaries.


Roads, railways or lateral canals, which shall be established with the
special object of supplementing the innavigability or other imperfections
of the waterway, in certain sections of the course of the Niger, its
affluents, its branches, and its issues, shall be considered, in their
capacity of means of communication, as dependencies of the river and
shall be open similarly to the traffic of all nations,

As on the river, there shall be levied on the roads, railways and canals,
only such tolls as are calculated on the expenses of construction,
maintenance and administration, and on the profits due to the promoters.

In the assessment of these tolls, foreigners and the inhabitants of the
respective territories, shall be treated on a footing of perfect equality.


Great Britain undertakes to apply the principles of freedom of navigation
annunciated in Articles XXVI., XXVII., XXVIII., XXIX., to so much of the
waters of the Niger and its affluent branches and issues as are or shall
be under her sovereignty or protectorate.

The regulations she will draw up for the safety and control of the
navigation, shall be designed to facilitate, as much as possible, the
passage of merchant shipping.

It is understood that nothing in the engagements thus accepted shall be
interpreted as hindering or likely to hinder Great Britain from making
any regulations whatever as to the navigation which shall not be contrary
to the spirit of such engagements.

Great Britain undertakes to protect foreign traders of every nation
engaged in commerce in those parts of the course of the Niger, which are
or shall be under her sovereignty or protectorate, as if they were her
own subjects, provided that such traders conform to the regulations which
are or shall be established in accordance with the foregoing.


France accepts, under the same reservations and identical terms, the
obligations set forth in the preceding articles, so far as they apply
to the waters of the Niger, its affluents, its branches and its issues,
which are or shall be under her sovereignty or protectorate.


Each of the other Signatory Powers similarly undertake, that they will
similarly act in such cases as they exercise or may hereafter exercise,
rights of sovereignty or protectorate, in any part of the Niger, its
affluent branches or issues.


The provisions of the present Act of Navigation shall remain in force
during times of war. Consequently, the navigation of all nations, neutral
or belligerant, shall at all times be free for the purpose of trade on
the Niger, its branches, affluents, mouths and issues, as well as on the
territorial waters fronting the mouths and issues of the river.

The traffic shall likewise remain free, notwithstanding the state of war,
on its roads, its railways and canals mentioned in Article XXIX.

The only exception to this principle shall be in cases in connection
with the transport of articles intended for a belligerent, and held, in
accordance with the laws of nations, to be contraband of war.

       *       *       *       *       *

                              CHAPTER VI.


                             ARTICLE XXXIV.

The Power, which in future takes possession of a territory on the coast
of the African Continent, situated outside of its actual possessions, or
which, having none there, has first acquired them, and the power which
assumes a protectorate, shall accompany either act by a notification
addressed to the other Powers signatory to the present Act, so as to
enable them to protest against the same, if there exist any grounds for
their doing so.


The Powers signatory to the present Act, recognize the obligation to
insure in the territories occupied by them on the coasts of the African
Continent, the existence of an adequate authority to enforce respect
for acquired rights, and for freedom of trade and transit wherever

                              CHAPTER VII.

                          GENERAL PROVISIONS.

                             ARTICLE XXXVI.

The Powers signatory to the present general Act reserve to themselves
the right of eventually, by mutual agreement, introducing therein
modifications or improvements, the utility of which has been shown by


The Powers who may not have signed the present Act shall accept its
provisions by a separate Act.

The adhesion of each Power shall be notified in the usual diplomatic
manner to the Government of the German Empire, and by it to those of all
the signatory and adherent States.

The adhesion shall imply the full right of acceptance of all the
obligations, and admission to all the advantages stipulated for in the
present general Act.


The present general Act shall be ratified with as short a delay as
possible, and in no case shall that delay exceed a year.

It shall come into force for each Power on the date of its ratification
by that Power.

Meanwhile the Powers signatory to the present Act bind themselves to
adopt no measure that shall be contrary to the provisions of the said Act.

Each Power shall send its ratification to the Government of the German
Empire, which undertakes to ratify the same to all the signatory Powers
of the present general Act.

The ratifications of all the Powers shall remain deposited in the
archives of the Government of the German Empire. When all the
ratifications shall have been produced, a deed of deposit shall be drawn
up in a protocol, which shall be signed by the Representatives of all the
Powers that have taken part in the Berlin Conference, and a certified
copy of it shall be sent to each of those Powers.

In consideration of which, the respective Plenipotentiaries have signed
the present general Act, and hereto affix their seals.

Done at Berlin, February 26th, 1885.

Inasmuch as the Congo Free State starts with the sanction of all the
leading powers of civilization, it assumes a dignity, at its very
inception, which attaches to no other African dynasty. It is, or ought
to be, beyond those jealousies which have torn, and are tearing, other
possessions in Africa to pieces, and retarding their colonization and
development. Further, the terms of its creation ought to assure it the
united sympathy and combined energy of its patrons and founders, and
these ought to be invincible within its magnificent boundaries for
overcoming every obstacle to permanent sovereignty and commercial,
industrial and moral development.

But the spirit of comity, which has made a Congo Free State possible,
might as well have rescued Equatorial Africa, from ocean to ocean, from
the rapacious grasp of the jealous and contending powers of Europe. True,
something like a free belt has been recognized, extending to within a few
miles of the Eastern coast, and intended to secure an outlet for products
which can be more advantageously marketed in that direction; yet this
is of no avail against projects designed to appropriate and control,
politically and commercially, the immense sweep of country between the
Congo Free State and Indian Ocean; it is rather an incentive to these
powers to make haste in their work of appropriation and reduction,
and they are at it with an earnestness which savors of the days when
two Americas furnished the flesh for picking, and the bone for angry
contention. Great Britain, Portugal, Germany, Italy, are in clash about
East African areas, protectorates, sovereignties, commercial interests,
with the likelihood of further trouble, and such deep complications as
arms only can simplify and relieve.

Looking but a little into the future, one can catch a glimpse of the
fate in store for East Africa. It is to be the grand political offset
to the Congo Free State. This has been resolved upon by Great Britain,
and its outlines are already mapped in her foreign policy. As matters
stand, there is nothing to prevent the consummation of her designs. She
has virtual possession of the Eastern coast from Cape Colony to the mouth
of the Zambezi. She has Egypt in her grasp, which means the Nile valley
from Alexandria to the head lakes, Victoria, Albert and Edward Nyanza,
with their drainage systems.

On the ocean side the power of the Sultan has been already limited to
Zanzibar and adjacent islands, and it is now like the last flicker
of a wasted candle. On the Zambezi, and north of it, up the Shire to
Lake Nyassa, come the claims of Portugal. Portugal is weak, and a poor
colonizer at that. She can be ousted by diplomacy or sat down upon by
force. The German and Italian interests will eventually blend with those
of Great Britain, or shape themselves into well-defined states, pledged
to peace and anxious to be let alone.

England is well equipped for this gigantic undertaking. She has an
extensive South African and Egyptian experience. She has her experience
in India, which she need but repeat in Africa to realize her dreams,
or at least achieve more than would be possible with any other power.
And then India is over-populated. It might be that thousands, perhaps
millions, of her people would swarm to African shores, where they would
find a climate not unlike their own, and resources which they could turn
to ready account. At any rate, England could enlist in India an army for
the occupation of East Africa. Her Indian contingent in Egypt answered
an excellent purpose, and redeemed the otherwise fatal campaign toward

The business of establishing an internal economy in this new empire is
easier for Great Britain than any other country. Her prestige means as
much with native tribes as with the petty sovereignties of Europe, or the
islands of the Pacific. Her shows of force are impressive, her methods
of discipline effective. In the midst of opposition her hand is hard and
heavy. A string of fortifications from the Zambezi to Cairo, with native
garrisons, under control of English army officers, would inspire the
natives with fear and assure their allegiance. The tact of her traders
and the perseverance of her missionaries would bring about all else that
might be necessary to create a thrifty and semi-Christian State.

Our posterity will watch with interest the development of Africa through
the agency of its Congo Free State on the west, and its Imperial
State on the east; the one contributing to the glory of all civilized
nations, the other to that of a single nation; the one an enlargement of
sovereignty, the other a concentration of it. One has for its inspiration
the genius of freedom, the other the genius of force. One is a dedication
to civilizing influences, the other is a seizure and appropriation in the
name of civilization. We can conceive of the latter, under the impetus of
patronage and of concentrated energy, supplemented by arbitrary power,
taking the lead for a time, and maintaining it till its viceroyalties
become centers of corruption and its subjects helpless peons. But in
the end, the former will bound to the front, lifted by internal forces,
which are free and virile, buoyed by a spirit of self-helpfulness
and independence, sustained from without by universal sympathy and
admiration, and from within by beings who have voluntarily consented
and contributed to their progress and enlightenment, and are proud
participants in their own institutions.

The historian of a century hence will confirm or deny the above
observations. If he confirms them, he will add that long experience
proved the inutility of forcing our governments, usages and peoples on
those of Africa without modification, and to the utter subordination of
those which were native; but that, on the contrary, the best civilizing
results were obtained by recognition of native elements, their gradual
endowment with sovereignty, their elevation to the trusts which commerce
and industry impose. It is time that our boasted civilization should
show a conquest which is not based on the inferiority, wreck and
extermination of the races it meets with in its course. It has careered
around the globe in temperate belts, stopping for nothing that came in
its way, justifying everything by its superiority. Nature calls a halt in
mid-Africa, and practically says: “The agents of civilization are already
here. Use them, but do not abuse. You can substitute no other that will
prove either permanent or profitable.”




                          THE RESCUE OF EMIN.

In the fall of 1886, Stanley was summoned from the United States by
the King of Belgium to come and pay him a visit. That monarch seems to
have remembered what others had forgotten, that a European adventurer
and a European project lay buried somewhere beneath the Equator and in
the very heart of the “Dark Continent.” Stanley responded to the King’s
invitation, and out of the interview which followed sprang a reason for
his late and most memorable journey across equatorial Africa. But it was
deemed wise to interest other agencies, and so the British Geographical
Society was consulted and induced to lend a helping hand. In order to
further nationalize the projected journey a commission was formed under
whose auspices it was to take place. This enlisted for the moment the
sympathies of the German peoples, for the lost one was a German. So
grew up what came to be known as the “Emin Bey Relief Committee,” with
head-quarters at London, and with Sir William Mackinnon as its secretary.

And now, who is Emin Bey, or as he appears most frequently, Emin Pasha?
What is there about his disappearance in the wilds of Africa that makes
knowledge of his whereabouts and his rescue so desirable? What, of more
than humanitarian moment, can attach to a journey planned as this one
was? These questions are momentous, for they involve far more than mere
men or mere projects of rescue. They involve the aims and ambitions of
empires, the policies of dynasties, the destinies of future African
States and peoples. That these things are true will appear from the
answers which history makes to the above queries——a history which is
aglow with events and attractive in its details, however little it may
serve to reveal of the present plans of those who contribute most to its
making. Emin Pasha was born in the Austrian province of Silesia, and the
town of Opplen, in 1840, the same year as Henry M. Stanley. He studied
medicine at Breslau, Königsberg and Berlin, and entered upon the world as
a regular M.D. with a diploma from the Berlin University. Sometime before
the Russian-Turkish war he went to Constantinople and entered the Turkish
army with the title of Bey, or Colonel. A taste for travel took him to
the East where he acquired the oriental languages. On his return we find
him attached to the Imperial Ministry of Turkey, but only during part of
the incumbency of Midhat Pasha, who, finding his ministry opposed to his
ultra hatred of Russia, dismissed it.

Up to this time he was known as Dr. Eduard (Edward) Schnitzer, that
being the name of his parents, with the prefix of Colonel, or Bey as an
affix. This was all as to outside knowledge of him. On his dismissal from
the Court at Constantinople he fled to Asia, and after many wanderings
turned up at Suakim and finally at Khartoum, in Africa, where he made
the acquaintance of that ill-starred and fatalistic English adventurer,
General Gordon, then Governor General of the Soudan, under English
auspices. The General finding him an adventurer of attainments made him
a storekeeper of his army, and upon ascertaining that he was an M.D.,
promoted him to the position of surgeon. In 1877 he was a practitioner
of medicine at Lado, in southern Soudan. He afterwards became
Surgeon-General of Gordon’s staff. In this capacity he served for four
years. During this time he was engaged in making many valuable scientific
researches and collections and in contributing interesting papers to
European learned societies. He was also of great use to Gordon, who sent
him to Uganda and Unyoro on diplomatic missions.

In 1878, when General Gordon was made Governor-General of the Soudan by
the British Government, he raised Col. Schnitzer to the rank of Governor
of the province of Hat el Seva in Southern Soudan. By this time the Mahdi
had risen in the Soudan, and was confronting Gordon with his Mohammedan
followers. To identify himself more fully with the Mohammedan people
among which he had to live, Col. Schnitzer abandoned his German name and
took the Arabic one of Emin (the faithful one) and the full title of
Pasha (General or Governor). The scheme on the part of Gordon was to
seize and hold the equatorial provinces of the Soudan, in the rear of
the Mahdi’s forces, and thus introduce a military menace as well as make
a political and moral diversion in favor of the cause he represented.
Gordon gave him part of his own army, augmented by a large native force,
and with this Emin Pasha took possession of his provinces far toward the
Equator, and abutting on the central lake system of the continent.

[Illustration: EMIN PASHA IN HIS TENT.]

For a time all went well with him. He proved a most indefatigable
traveler, and showed special fitness to govern. He was familiar with the
language of the Turks, Arabs, Germans, French and Italians, and acquired
readily the dialects of the heathen tribes. On every side he displayed
suavity, tact and genius. In 1879, he made an excursion to the western
shore land of the Mwutan, which till then had not been visited by white
men. In 1880 he visited Makralla-land, and planted many trading stations,
thus enlarging his territory geographically and politically. In this
expedition he located many important rivers, chief of which was the
Kibali. In 1881 he pushed his explorations westward into the land of the
powerful Niam Niams, and southward into the lands of the Monbuttus, which
tribes are types of the best physical and political strength in that part
of Africa, west of the Nile sources.

Thus Emin kept on increasing the extent and importance of his territory,
and it came to be recognized as the best governed of any in the
vast undefined domain of the Soudan. He found it infested with Arab
slave-dealers, who practiced all the barbarities of their kind, and much
of his time was occupied in suppressing the nefarious traffic. He became
the recognized foe of those who penetrated his domains to barter in human
flesh, or if cupidity dictated, to burn, pillage and kill, in order that
they might freight their dhwos with trophies of their cruelty.

Though undefined east and west, his kingdom came to recognize Lado as its
northern capital, and Wadelai, on Lake Albert Nyanza, as its southern.
The work of organizing his territory extended from 1878 to 1882. He
had practically driven out the slave-traders and converted a deficient
revenue into a surplus for his government, conducting everything on
the basis laid down by his superior, General Gordon, and carrying out
with the most marked success the plans of that noble enthusiast. He was
fast making his territory semi-civilized when the Mahdi arose, led his
hosts northward, massacred the army of Gordon, and finally made himself
master of Khartoum and a great part of the Soudan. This was in 1882. The
Egyptian garrisons throughout the Southern Soudan were then abandoned to
their fate, and the last attempt to save Khartoum ended with the death of
General Gordon.

During the years of bloodshed that followed, Emin remained at his post,
his provinces entirely cut off from the world, and he himself neglected
and left entirely to his own resources. He held at the time about four
thousand native and Egyptian troops under his command. He was completely
surrounded by hostile tribes, but it is generally admitted that if he had
chosen to leave behind him the thousands of helpless women and children
and abandon the province to the merciless cruelties of the slave traders,
he could easily have effected his escape either to the Congo or to the
Zanzibar coast. But he determined to stay and to keep the equatorial
provinces for civilization, if possible.

The great work done by this brave and indefatigable German cannot be told
here in detail. But he organized auxiliary forces of native soldiers; he
was constantly engaged in warfare with surrounding tribes; he garrisoned
a dozen river stations lying long distances apart. His ammunition ran
low and he lacked the money needed for paying his small army; but in the
face of manifold difficulties and dangers he maintained his position,
governed the country well, and taught the natives how to raise cotton,
rice, indigo and coffee, and also how to weave cloth and to make shoes,
candles, soap and many articles of commerce. He vaccinated the natives
by the thousand in order to stamp out small-pox; he opened the first
hospital known in that quarter; he established a regular post-route, with
forty offices; he made important geographical discoveries in the basin
of the Albert Nyanza Lake, and in many ways demonstrated his capacity
for governing barbarous races by the methods and standards of European

Murder, war and slavery were made things of the past, so that at last
“the whole country became so safe that only for the wild beasts in the
thickets, a man could have gone from one end of the province to the
other, armed with nothing more than a walking-stick.” A German writer
said of him at the time: “In his capital, Lado, where Dr. Schnitzer
earlier resided, he arose every day before the sun. His first work was to
visit the hospitals and care for the health of the people and the troops.
After a day devoted to executive labors, a great part of the night would
be spent in writing those essays on anthropology, ethnology, geography,
botany, and the languages of the people dwelling in his province which
have made his name famous as a scientific explorer.”

Tn 1885 Emin had ten fortified stations along the Upper Nile, the most
northern one being Lado, and the most southern one Wadelai. The latter
place he made his capital for some time. His command at Wadelai then
consisted of 1500 soldiers, ten Egyptians and fifteen negro officers. The
rest were at the various stations on the Nile. He had ammunition to hold
out until the end of 1886, and longer, he wrote, “if the wild tribes did
not make the discovery that he would be then entirely out of it.” In 1887
he wrote: “I am still holding out, and will not forsake my people.” After
that, letters were received from him in which he described his position
as hopeful. In one of the last of these letters he wrote:

“The work that Gordon paid for with his blood I will strive to carry
on according to his intentions and his spirit. For twelve long years I
have striven and toiled and sown the seeds for future harvests, laid the
foundation stones for future buildings. Shall I now give up the work
because a way may soon open to the coast? Never!”

The successes of the Mahdi had isolated him entirely on the north. To
the west and south were powerful tribes which, though not unfriendly,
could offer him no avenue of escape. To the east were still more powerful
peoples, once friendly but now imbued with the Mahdi’s hatred of white
men and their commercial and political objects. Chief of these were the
Uganda, whose King, Mtesa, had died in 1884, and had been succeeded
by his son Mwanga, a thorough Mahdist and bitter against European
innovation. Emin was therefore a prisoner. This was known in Europe in
1886, but how critical his situation was, no one could tell. It was
natural to regard it as perilous, and it was hoped that the Egyptian
Government would take measures for his relief. The Cairo Government did
nothing except to give him the title of Pasha and to offer £10,000 to any
expedition that might be sent to him. Many relief expeditions were then
planned, but nothing came of them till the one at whose head Stanley was
placed took shape.

[Illustration: NIAM-NIAM VILLAGE.]

Where should such an expedition go? What should it do? It did not take
long for the “wizard of equatorial travel” to decide. Here might be
opened a whole volume of controversy as to whether Stanley’s mission in
search of Emin was really humanitarian or not. The Germans who had the
greatest interest in the safety of their fellow countryman, refused to
look on the expedition as other than a scheme to rid the Southern Soudan
of a Teutonic ruler in the interest of England. They regarded Emin as
abundantly able to take care of himself for an indefinite time, and
the event of his withdrawal as amounting to a confession that Germanic
sovereignty was at an end in the lake regions of Central Africa. It
cannot be ascertained now that Stanley entered upon the expedition for
the relief of Emin Pasha in other than a humanitarian spirit, though
he was backed by English capital. It is fair to presume that since he
was invited to the ordeal by the Belgian King, whose exchequer was
responsible for the greater part of the outlay, he went with perfectly
disinterested motives. But be that as it may, he felt the delicacy of his
task and, after having discovered the lost one, his interviews with him
are models of diplomatic modesty and patience.

On being placed in charge of the expedition by its projectors, Stanley
naturally chose the Congo route into the heart of Africa, because he was
familiar with it by his recent efforts to found the Congo Free State,
and because it would give him a chance to review and refresh his labors
in that behalf. If all things were as he had left them, he knew that a
water-way traversable by steam was open for him to a point on the Congo
opposite the habitation of Emin and distant but a few hundred miles. So
May 11, 1887, found Stanley on the west coast of Africa ready to start
inland. He did not collect his force and equipments at the mouth of the
Congo, but made his way around the cataracts to Stanley Pool. There, at
the station called Kinchassa everything was gathered for the up-river
journey. Thence, the expedition embarked in three steamers, Le Stanley,
the large stern-wheeler belonging to the Congo Free State, towing the
Florida which had just been put together by sections. Le Stanley and
Florida had on board about 300 men, mostly trained and armed natives,
among whom were four English officers and several scientific gentlemen,
besides a cargo of ammunition, merchandise and pack animals. The next
steamer was the Henry Reid, a launch belonging to the American Baptist
Missionary Union, and kindly loaned to Stanley for the purpose of
transporting part of his force and equipments from Stanley Pool to his
proposed camp on the Aruwimi. The other steamer was the Peace, placed at
Stanley’s disposal by the Rev. Holman Bentley, of the English Baptist
Missionary Society, and of which a young missionary named Whitely had

On their passage up the Congo, and after a sail of ten days a camp was
formed at Bolobo, and left in charge of Captain Ward, who was deemed
a proper person for the command on account of his previous knowledge
of the natives, always inclined to be more or less hostile at that
point. Captain Ward had met Stanley below Stanley Pool and while he was
performing his tedious journey around the cataracts. He thus describes
the expedition on its march at the time of the meeting.

In the front of Stanley’s line was a tall Soudanese warrior bearing the
Gordon Bennett yacht flag. Behind the soldier, and astride a magnificent
mule, came the great explorer. Following immediately in his rear were
his personal servants, Somalis, with their braided waistcoats and
white robes. Then came Zanzibaris with their blankets, water-bottles,
ammunition-belts and guns; stalwart Soudanese soldiery, with great
hooded coats, their rifles on their backs, and innumerable straps and
leather belts around their bodies; Wagawali porters, bearing boxes of
ammunition, to which were fastened axes, shovels and hose lines, as well
as their little bundles of clothing, which were invariably rolled up in
old threadbare blankets. At one point the whale-boat was being carried
in sections, suspended from poles, which were each borne by four men.
Donkeys laden with sacks of rice were next met, and a little further back
were the women of Tippoo Tib’s harem, their faces concealed and their
bodies draped in gaudily-colored clothes. Here and there was an English
officer. A flock of goats next came along, and then the form of Tippoo
Tib came into view as he strutted majestically along in his flowing Arab
robes and large turban, carrying over his right shoulder a jewel-hilted
sword, the emblem of office from the Sultan of Zanzibar. Behind him
followed several Arab sheiks, whose bearing was quiet and dignified.


It was not the intention to hurry over the long stretch of water between
Stanley Pool and the Aruwimi, but to make the trip by easy stages. Yet
it was a trip involving great labor, for there being no coal, and the
steamers being small, the work of wood-cutting had to be done every
night. The launches required as much wood for twelve hours steaming as
thirty or forty men, laboring at night, could cut with their axes and
cross-cut saws. In some portions of the upper Congo where the shores are
swampy for miles in width, the men were often compelled to wade these
long distances before striking the rising forest land, and of course they
had to carry the wood back to the steamers over the same tedious and
dangerous routes.

As has been stated, Stanley’s objective was the mouth of the large river
Aruwimi, which enters the Congo, a short distance below Stanley Falls, in
Lat. 1° N., and whose general westward direction led him to think that by
following it he would get within easy marches of Lake Albert Nyanza and
thus into Emin’s dominions.

On the arrival of the expedition at the mouth of the Aruwimi, an armed
camp was formed at Yambungi and left in charge of the unfortunate Major
Barttelot, and here a conference was awaited with the dual-hearted Arab,
Tippoo Tib, whom Stanley had recognized as ruler at Nyangwe, on the
Congo, above Stanley Falls, and who was bound to him by the most solemn
treaties. The wily chieftain came up in due time, and the interview
was such as to engender serious doubts of his further friendship,
notwithstanding his protestations.


The occasion was a palaver, at the request of Major Barttelot, with a
view to obtain some definite understanding as to the providing of the
Manyema porters whom Tippoo Tib had promised Stanley he would supply in
order that the rearguard might follow him up from the Aruwimi River to
Wadelai. How the porters did not come up to time; how the commander of
the rearguard was hampered with new conditions as to weight when the men
did appear; and how the dreadful business ended in the assassination of
Major Barttelot and the breaking up of the camp, will appear further
on. The death of Mr. Jameson soon afterwards, at Ward’s Camp, on the
Congo, a distressing sequel to the former tragedy, was in somber tone
with the reports of Stanley’s death which came filtering through the
darkness at about the same time. The cloud which fell upon the Aruwimi
camp seemed to spread its dark mantle over the entire expedition. Mr.
Werner, in his interesting volume “A Visit to Stanley’s Rear Guard,”
gives a characteristic sketch of the Arab chief; and Mr. Werner was the
engineer in charge of the vessel which took Major Barttelot part of the
way on his last journey to the Falls. “After the light complexion of the
other Arabs,” he says, “I was somewhat surprised to find Mr. Tippoo Tib
as black as any negro I had seen; but he had a fine well-shaped head,
bald at the top, and a short, black, thick beard thickly strewn with
white hairs. He was dressed in the usual Arab style, but more simply
than the rest of the Arab chiefs, and had a broad, well-formed figure.
His restless eyes gave him a great resemblance to the negro’s head with
blinking eyes in the electric advertisements of somebody’s shoe polish
which adorned the walls of railway-stations some years ago——and earned
him the nickname of ‘Nubian blacking.’”

[Illustration: AN AMBUSCADE.]

In June, 1887, Stanley started on his ascent of the unknown Aruwimi,
and through a country filled with natives prejudiced against him by the
Arab traders and friends of the Mahdi. His force now comprised 5 white
men and 380 armed natives. His journey proved tedious and perilous in
the extreme, and though he persevered in the midst of obstacles for two
months, he was still 400 miles from Albert Nyanza. It was now found that
the river route was impracticable for the heavier boats. At this point
their troubles thickened. The natives proved hostile, and ingenious in
their means of opposing obstructions to the further progress of the
expedition. They refused to contribute provisions, and starvation stared
the travelers in the face. For weeks their only food was wild fruit and
nuts. To forage was to invite death, and to engage in open war was to
court annihilation. Disease broke out, and it must have swept them all
away but for the precautions which Stanley took to head off its ravages.
As it was, the number was greatly reduced, and the men were weak,
emaciated, in a state of panic, amid surrounding dangers and without
spirit for further trials. Writing of this critical period, his letters

“What can you make of this, for instance? On August 17, 1887, all the
officers of the rear column are united at Yambuya. They have my letter
of instructions before them, but instead of preparing for the morrow’s
march, to follow our track, they decide to wait at Yambuya, which
decision initiates the most awful season any community of men ever
endured in Africa or elsewhere.

“The results are that three-quarters of their force die of slow poison.
Their commander is murdered and the second officer dies soon after of
sickness and grief. Another officer is wasted to a skeleton and obliged
to return home. A fourth is sent to wander aimlessly up and down the
Congo, and the survivor is found in such a fearful pest-hole that we dare
not describe its horrors.

“On the same date, 150 miles away, the officer of the day leads 333
men of the advance column into the bush, loses the path and all
consciousness of his whereabouts, and every step he takes only leads him
further astray. His people become frantic; his white companions, vexed
and irritated by the sense of the evil around them, cannot devise any
expedient to relieve him. They are surrounded by cannibals and poison
tipped arrows thin their numbers.

“Meantime I, in command of the river column, am anxiously searching up
and down the river in four different directions; through forests my
scouts are seeking for them, but not until the sixth day was I successful
in finding them.”

Having now brought his different marching columns closer together, and
loaded his sick in light canoes, he started on, intercepted continually
by wild native raiders who inflicted considerable loss on his best men,
who had to bear the brunt of fighting as well as the fatigue of paddling.
Soon progress by the river became too tedious and difficult, and orders
were given to cast off the canoes. The land course now lay along the
north bank of the Itura, amid dense forests, and through the despoiled
lands which had been a stamping ground for Ugarrowa and Kilingalango
raiders. No grass land, with visions of beef, mutton and vegetables, were
within a hundred miles of the dismal scene.

For two weeks the expedition threaded the unknown tangle, looking out
for ambuscades, warding off attacks, and braving dangers of every
description. At length the region of the Dwaris was reached and a
plantain patch burst into view. The hungry wayfarers plunged into it and
regaled themselves with the roasted fruit, while the more thoughtful
provided a store of plantain flour for the dreaded wilderness ahead.
Another plunge was made into the trackless forest and ten days elapsed
before another plantation was reached, during which time the small-pox
broke out, with greater loss of life than any other enemy had as yet
inflicted. Meanwhile they had passed the mouth of the Ihuru, a large
tributary of the Itura, and were on the banks of the Ishuru. As there
was no possibility of crossing this turbulent tributary, its right bank
was followed for four days till the principal village of the Andikuma
tribe was reached. It was surrounded by the finest plantation of
bananas and plantains, which all the Manyemas’ habit of spoliation and
destruction had been unable to destroy. There the travelers, after severe
starvation during fourteen days, gorged themselves to such excess that it
contributed greatly to lessen their numbers. Every twentieth individual
suffered from some complaint which entirely incapacitated him for duty.

From Andikuma, a six days’ march northerly brought them to a flourishing
settlement, called Indeman. Here Stanley was utterly nonplussed by the
confusion of river names. The natives were dwarfs. After capturing some
of them and forcing answers, he found that they were on the right branch
of the Ihuru river and that it could be bridged. Throwing a bridge
across, they passed into a region wholly inhabited by dwarfs who proved
very hostile. They are the Wambutti people, and such were their number
and ferocity that Stanley was forced to change his north-east into a
south-east course and to follow the lead of elephant tracks.

They had now to pass through the most terrible of all their African
experiences. Writing further of this trying ordeal, Stanley says:

“On the fifth day, having distributed all the stock of flour in camp,
and having killed the only goat we possessed, I was compelled to open
the officers’ provision boxes and take a pound pot of butter, with two
cupfuls of my flour, to make an imitation gruel, there being nothing
else save tea, coffee, sugar, and a pot of sage in the boxes. In the
afternoon a boy died, and the condition of the majority of the rest was
most disheartening. Some could not stand, falling down in the effort to
do so. These constant sights acted on my nerves until I began to feel not
only moral but physical sympathy, as though the weakness was contagious.
Before night a Madi carrier died. The last of our Somalis gave signs
of collapse, and the few Soudanese with us were scarcely able to move.
When the morning of the sixth day dawned, we made broth with the usual
pot of butter, an abundance of water, a pot of condensed milk, and a
cupful of flour for 130 people. The chiefs and Bonny were called to a
council. At my suggesting a reverse to the foragers of such a nature
as to exclude our men from returning with news of the disaster, they
were altogether unable to comprehend such a possibility. They believed
it possible that these 150 men were searching for food, without which
they would not return. They were then asked to consider the supposition
that they were five days searching food, and they had lost the road,
perhaps, or, having no white leader, had scattered to shoot goats, and
had entirely forgotten their starving friends and brothers in the camp.
What would be the state of the 130 people five days hence? Bonny offered
to stay with ten men in the camp if I provided ten days’ food for each
person, while I would set out to search for the missing men. Food to make
a light cupful of gruel for ten men for ten days was not difficult to
procure, but the sick and feeble remaining must starve unless I met with
good fortune; and accordingly a stone of buttermilk, flour, and biscuits
were prepared and handed over to the charge of Bonny. In the afternoon
of the seventh day we mustered everybody, besides the garrison of the
camp, ten men. Sadi, a Manyema chief, surrendered fourteen of his men to
their doom. Kibboboras, another chief, abandoned his brother; and Fundi,
another Manyema chief, left one of his wives and her little boy. We left
twenty-six feeble and sick wretches already past all hope unless food
could be brought them within twenty-four hours. In a cheery tone, though
my heart was never heavier, I told the forty-three hunger-bitten people
that I was going back to hunt for the missing men. We traveled nine miles
that afternoon, having passed several dead people on the road, and early
on the eighth day of their absence from camp we met them marching in
an easy fashion, but when we were met the pace was altered, so that in
twenty-six hours from leaving Starvation Camp we were back with a cheery
abundance around us of gruel and porridge, boiling bananas, boiling
plantains, roasting meat, and simmering soup. This had been my nearest
approach to absolute starvation in all my African experience. Altogether
twenty-one persons succumbed in this dreadful camp.”


After twelve days journey the party on November 12th, reached Ibwiri. The
Arab devastation, which had reached within a few miles of Ibwiri, was so
thorough that not a native hut was left standing between Urgarrava and
Ibwiri. What the Arabs did not destroy the elephants destroyed, turning
the whole region into a horrible wilderness.

Stanley continues:——“Our sufferings terminated at Ibwiri. We were beyond
the reach of destroyers. We were on virgin soil, in a populous region,
abounding with food. We, ourselves, were mere skeletons——reduced in
number from 289 to but little more than half that number. Hitherto our
people were skeptical of what we told them. The suffering had been so
awful, the calamities so numerous, and the forests so endless, that they
refused to believe that by and by we would see plains and cattle, the
Nyanza, and Emin Pasha. They had turned a deaf ear to our prayers and
entreaties for, driven by hunger and suffering, they sold their rifles
and equipments for ears of Indian corn, deserted with their ammunition
and became generally demoralized. Perceiving that mild punishment would
be of no avail, I resorted to the death penalty, and two of the worst
cases were hanged in the presence of all. We halted 13 days at Ibwiri,
revelling on fowls, goats, bananas, corn, yams, etc. The supplies were
inexhaustible and our people glutted themselves with such effect that
our force increased to 173 sleek robust men——one had been killed with an


[Illustration: AFRICAN WARRIORS.]

On November 24th the expedition started for Albert Nyanza, 126 miles
distant. Given food, the distance seemed nothing. On December 1st an open
country was sighted from the top of a ridge which was named Mt. Pisgah.
On the 5th the plains were reached and the deadly, gloomy forest left
behind. The light of day now beamed all around, after 160 days of travel.
They thought they had never seen grass so green or a country so lovely.
The men could not contain themselves but leaped and yelled for joy, and
even raced over the ground with their heavy burdens.


On Nov. 9, 1887, Stanley says, “We entered the country of the powerful
Chief Mazamboni. The villages were scattered so thickly that no road
except through them could be found. The natives sighted us, but we were
prepared. We seized a hill as soon as we arrived in the center of a
mass of villages, and built a zareba as fast as billhooks could cut the
brushwood. The war cries were terrible from hill to hill, pealing across
the intervening valleys. The people gathered in hundreds at every point,
war horns and drums announcing the struggle. After a slight skirmish,
ending in our capture of a cow, the first beef we had tasted since we
left the ocean, the night passed peacefully, both sides preparing for the

“Here Mr. Stanley narrates how negotiations with natives failed,
Mazamboni declining a peace offering, and how a detachment of 40 persons,
led by Lieutenant Stairs, and another of 30, under command of Mr.
Jephson, with sharpshooters, left the zareba and assaulted and carried
the villages, driving the natives into a general rout. The march was
resumed on the 12th and here were constant little fights.

“On the afternoon of the 13th,” says Mr. Stanley, “we sighted the Nyanza,
with Kavalli, the objective point of the expedition. Six miles off I had
told the men to prepare to see the Nyanza. They murmured and doubted,
saying, “Why does the master continually talk this way? Nyanza indeed.”
When they saw the Nyanza below them, many came to kiss my hands. We were
now at an altitude of 5,200 feet above the sea, with the Albert Nyanza
2,900 feet below, in one degree twenty minutes. The south end of the
Nyanza lay largely mapped for about six miles south of this position and
right across to the eastern shore. Every dent in its low, flat shore
was visible, and traced like a silver snake on the dark ground was the
tributary Lanilki, flowing into the Albert Nyanza from the south-west.

“After a short halt to enjoy the prospect, we commenced the rugged and
stony descent. Before the rear guard had descended 100 feet the natives
from the plateau poured after them, keeping the rear guard busy until
within a few hundred feet of the Nyanza plain. We camped at the foot of
the plateau wall, the aneroids reading 2,500 feet above the sea level. A
night attack was made, but the sentries sufficed to drive our assailants

“We afterwards approached the village of Kakongo, situated at the
south-west corner of Albert Lake. Three hours were spent by us in
attempting to make friends, but we signally failed. They would not allow
us to go to the lake, because we might frighten their cattle. They
would not exchange the blood of brotherhood, because they never heard
of any good people coming from the west side of the lake. They would
not accept any present from us, because they did not know who we were;
but they would give us water to drink, and would show us the road up to
Nyam-Sassi. From these singular people we learned that they had heard
that there was a white man at Unyoro, but they had never heard of any
white men being on the west side, nor had they ever seen any steamers
on the lake. There was no excuse for quarrelling. The people were civil
enough, but they did not want us near them. We therefore were shown the
path and followed it for miles. We camped about half a mile from the
lake, and then began to consider our position with the light thrown upon
it by conversation with the Kakongo natives.”

But, now he was in more of a quandary than ever. The lake was before
him, but no sign of Emin nor any of his officials. Could he have failed
to hear of Stanley’s sacrifices in his behalf? The famished expedition
looked in vain on that expanse of water for evidence of friendly flag or
welcome steamer. It had left all its own boats behind, a distance of 190
miles, and was therefore helpless for further search. This should not be,
and so with his accustomed heroism, Stanley resolved on a return march to
Kilinga for boats. It was a hard, quick journey, occupying weeks, for the
distance was great.

Writing of his fatigue and disappointment on his arrival at Lake Albert
Nyanza, Stanley says:

“My couriers from Zanzibar had evidently not arrived, or Emin Pasha,
with his two steamers, would have paid the south-west side of the lake a
visit to prepare the natives for our coming. My boat was at Kilingalonga,
190 miles distant, and there was no canoe obtainable. To seize a canoe
without the excuse of a quarrel, my conscience would not permit. There
was no tree anywhere of a size sufficient to make canoes. Wadelai was
a terrible distance off for an expedition so reduced. We had used five
cases of cartridges in five days fighting on the plain.

“A month of such fighting must exhaust our stock. There was no plan
suggested that was feasible, except to retreat to Ibwiri, build a fort,
send the party back to Kalingalonga for a boat, store up every load in
the fort not conveyable, leave a garrison in the fort to hold it, march
back to Albert Lake, and send a boat in search of Emin Pasha. This was
the plan which, after lengthy discussions with the officers, I resolved

The most pathetic part of this eventful history is the fact that Emin
had really received Stanley’s messages, had been surprised at his coming
to rescue him, and had made an effort to meet him on some likely point
on the lake, but having failed had returned to his southern capital,
Wadelai, on the Nile outlet of the lake.

During the time so spent by the expedition the outside world was filled
with rumors of the death of Stanley, either by disease or at the hands
of the natives. These reports would always be followed by some favorable
report from the expedition, not authentic, but enough to give hope
that the hardy explorers were safe and continuing their way across the
continent. Occasionally, too, during the first part of the trip, couriers
would arrive at the coast from Stanley announcing progress, but, as they
advanced, no further communications were received, and the expedition was
swallowed up in the jungles and vast forests of Central Africa.

Putting his plans for a return into execution, Stanley had to fight
his way from the shores of the lake to the top of the plateau, for the
Kakongo natives were determined he should not pass back the way he had
come. He was victorious with a loss of one man killed and one wounded.
The plateau gained, he plunged westward by forced marches, and by
January 7, 1888, was back at Ibwiri. After a few days rest there, he
dispatched Lieut. Stairs with 100 men to Kilinga to bring up the boats.
On his return with the boats, he was sent to Ugarrowas to bring up the
convalescents. Stanley now fell sick and only recovered after a month of
careful nursing.

It was now April 2d, and he again started for the lake, accompanied by
Jephson and Parke, Nelson being left in command at the post, now Fort
Bodo, with a garrison of 43 men. On April 26, he was again in Mazamboni’s
country, who, after much solicitation was induced to make blood
brotherhood with Stanley. Strange to say every other chief as far as the
lake followed his example, and every difficulty was removed. Food was
supplied in abundance and gratis, and the gracious natives, expert in the
art of hut building, prepared in advance the necessary shelter for night.

[Illustration: BEGINNING A HUT.]

When within a day’s march of the lake, natives came up from Kavalli
saying that a white man had given their chief a note done up in a black
packet and that they would lead Stanley to him if he would follow. He
replied, “he would not only follow but make them rich,” for he did not
doubt that the white man was Emin Pasha. The next day’s march brought
them to Chief Kavalli, who handed Stanley a note from Emin Pasha done
up in black American oil cloth. It was to the effect that as there had
been a native rumor that a white man had been seen at the south end of
the lake, he (Emin) had gone thither in a steamer but had been unable to
obtain reliable information. The note further begged Stanley to remain
where he was till Emin could communicate with him.


[Illustration: THE SECOND STAGE.]

The next day, April 23d, Stanley sent Jephson with a strong force to take
the boat of the expedition to Lake Nyanza. On the 26th the boat crew
sited Mawa Station, the southernmost station in Emin’s boundaries. There
Jephson was hospitably received by the Egyptian garrison. On April 29th,
Stanley and his party again reached the bivouac ground on the plateau
overlooking the lake, where they had encamped before, and at 5 P.M.,
they sighted the Khedive steamer, seven miles away on the lake, steaming
up towards them. By 7 P.M., the steamer arrived opposite the camp,
and shortly afterwards, Emin Pasha, Signor Carati and Jephson came to
Stanley’s head-quarters where they were heartily welcomed. The next day
Stanley moved his camp to a better place, three miles above Nyamsassi,
and Emin also moved his camp thither. The two leaders were together,
in frequent consultation, till May 25th. The Pasha was surrounded by
two battalions of regulars, besides a respectable force of irregulars,
sailors, artisans, clerks and servants. How different, in many respects,
was the situation from what Stanley expected!

He found Emin Pasha in the midst of plenty and unwilling to be rescued.
He found his own forces jaded with travel, on the eve of starvation, and
anxious to be rescued. He found, moreover, a prince in his own equatorial
empire, who looked with jealous eyes on the relief expedition. In one
of his (Emin’s) letters dated April 17, 1888, he declared that he had
no intention to give up his work in Africa and had determined to await
Stanley’s coming at Wadelai. In another letter he expressed himself
very decidedly to the effect that he did not wish his province to come
under English suzerainty. He was evidently of the opinion that the
British Government in sending out Stanley had its eyes on his province
with a view to eventually incorporating it with the Soudan, should the
Anglo-Egyptians succeed in re-establishing authority at Khartoum. The
same idea gradually forced itself to acceptance in Europe, and, as we
know, the German Government later became no less anxious to get into
communication with Emin in the hope of preventing him from making any
arrangement with England.


It was not therefore such a meeting as took place years before between
Stanley and Livingstone, at Ujiji on the banks of Lake Tanganyika.

Long interviews followed which did not impress Stanley with the fact
that his expedition was to be a success, so far as getting Emin out of
the country was concerned. “Altogether,” said Emin, “if I consent to go
away from here we shall have 8000 people with us.” His principal desire
seemed to be that Stanley should relieve him of about 100 of his Egyptian
soldiers, with their women and children. He said he was extremely
doubtful of the loyalty of the first and second battalions. It was this
interview which Stanley announced to the world of civilization by way of
the Congo route. The situation was most delicate. He could not urge upon
the ruler of an empire to flee from his dominions, he could not even ask
one who seemed to be in the midst of peace and plenty, to desert them
for the hardships of a long journey to the coast. He could only impress
on him in a modest way the objects of the expedition and the propriety
of his taking advantage of its presence to effect an escape from dangers
which were thickening every hour, and which must ere long take shape in a
descent upon him by the ever increasing hordes of the Mahdi.

These representations were of no avail and Stanley left him on May 25th,
leaving with him Jephson and five of his carriers. In return Emin gave
Stanley 105 of his regular Mahdi native porters. In fourteen days Stanley
was back at Fort Bodo, where he found Captain Nelson and Lieut. Stairs.
The latter had come up from Ugarrowas, twenty-two days after Stanley had
set out for the lake, bringing along, alas! only 16 out of 56 men. All
the rest had perished on the journey. Stairs brought along the news that
Stanley’s 20 couriers, by whom he had sent word to Barttelot at Yambuna,
had passed Ugarrowas on their way to their destination, on March 16th.
Fort Bodo was in excellent condition on Stanley’s arrival, and enough
ground had been placed under cultivation to insure a sufficient amount of
corn for food.

On June 16th he left Fort Bodo with 111 Zanzibaris and 101 of Emin’s
Soudanese, for Kilonga, where he arrived on June 24th. Pushing on, he
arrived at Ugarrowas on July 19th. While this backward journey was
performed rapidly and without serious hindrance, it was to end in sorrow.
Ugarrowas was found deserted, its occupants having gathered as much
ivory as they could, and passed down the river in company with Stanley’s
couriers. Stanley made haste to follow, and on August 10th came up with
the Ugarrowa people in a flotilla of 57 canoes. His couriers, now reduced
to 17 in number, related awful stories of hair-breadth escapes and
tragic scenes. Besides the three which had been slain, two were down with
wounds, and all bore scars of arrow wounds.

A week later they were all down to Bunalyla, where Stanley met his
friend, Dr. Bonney, at the stockade, and inquired for Major Barttelot,
who, it will be recollected, was left in charge of Stanley’s rear guard
at Yambuna, with orders to secure food and carriers from Tippoo Tib.
Stanley asked:

“Well, my dear Bonney where’s the Major?”

“He is dead, sir; shot by a Manyuema, about a month ago,” replied Bonney.

“Good God,” I cried, “and Jamieson!”

“He has gone to Stanley Falls to try to get more men from Tippoo Tib.”

“And Troup?”

“Troup has gone home invalided.”

“Well, were is Ward?”

“Ward is at Bangala.”

“Heaven alive! Then you are the only one here?”

“Yes, sir.”

Without loss of further time, Stanley hastened down to Yambuna, only
to find the sad story too, too, true. Barttelot and his entire caravan
had been destroyed, and the officers left in charge of the station
had fled panic stricken down the river with all the supplies of the
station. Stanley complained greatly of this desertion, yet proceeded
to do the best he could to re-provision the fort and recuperate his
men. He remained long enough to study the situation, and it was sad
in the extreme as it gradually unfolded in his mind. His governor of
Stanley Falls and the Congo beyond, the Arab Tippoo Tib, was evidently
working in the interest of the Mahdi, in violation of his oath and
most solemn covenants. Though proof of his open hostility was wanting,
Stanley strongly suspected him of conspiring to bring about the massacre
of Barttelot’s caravan, in July, 1888, with a view of preventing his
(Stanley’s) return to the Albert Nyanza. Evidence of a wide spread
conspiracy to rid the entire equatorial section of its European occupants
was also found in the fact that the destruction of Barttelot’s caravan
ante-dated but a month the uprising in Emin Pasha’s provinces, the
desertion of him by his army and his deposition from power and final
imprisonment, the details of which are given hereafter.


Yet with these fierce fires of conspiracy crackling about him in the
depths of the African forest, Stanley thought more of others than
himself. He resolved to hasten back to the lake to rescue Emin from a
danger which must by this time have become plain to him, even if it had
not already crushed him. He worked his force by relays till the Ituri
ferry was reached. Here he expected to hear from Emin. Disappointment
increased his fears, and he resolved to rid himself of all incumbrance
and resort to forced marches. He therefore established a camp at the
Ituri ferry and left Stairs in command with 124 people. With the rest he
forced his way across the plains, the natives being the same as those
with which he had engaged in desperate conflict on previous journeys.
But now they were quite changed in spirit, and instead of offering him
opposition they were anxious to make blood brotherhood with him. They
even constructed the huts of his camps, and brought food, fuel and water
as soon as the sites were pitched upon.

With all this kindness and sociability of the natives, not a word could
be gathered from them of the state of affairs on the Albert Nyanza. At
length, January 16, 1889, at a station called Gaviras, a message was
received from Kavalli, on the south-west side of the lake. It was a
letter from Jephson, with two confirmatory notes from Emin, and conveyed
the startling intelligence, that a rebellion had broken out, in the
previous August, in Emin’s dominions, and that the Pasha had been made
a prisoner. The rebellion had been gotten up by some half dozen of the
Egyptian officers, and had been augmented by the soldiers at Laboré,
though those of other stations had remained faithful. Then the letter
goes on to warn Stanley to be careful on his arrival at Kavalli, and
continues in the following pitiful strain:

    “When the Pasha and I were on our way to Regaf two men——one an
    officer, Abdul Voal Effendi, and the other a clerk——went about
    and told the people they had seen you, and that you were only
    an adventurer, and had not come from Egypt; that the letters
    you had brought from the Khedive and Nubar were forgeries;
    that it was untrue Khartoum had fallen; and that the Pasha
    and you had made a plot to take them, their wives and their
    children out of the country and hand them over as slaves to the
    English. Such words in an ignorant, fanatical country like this
    acted like fire among the people, and the result was a general
    rebellion and we were made prisoners.

    “The rebels then collected the officers from the different
    stations and held a large meeting here to determine what
    measures they should take, and all those who did not join the
    movement were so insulted and abused that they were obliged for
    their own safety to acquiesce in what was done: The Pasha was
    deposed and those officers suspected of being friendly to him
    were removed from their posts, and those friendly to the rebels
    were put in their places. It was decided to take the Pasha as
    a prisoner to Regaf, and some of the worst rebels were even in
    for putting him in irons. But the officers were afraid to put
    their plans into execution, as the soldiers said they would
    never permit any one to lay a hand on him. Plans were also made
    to entrap you when you returned and strip you of all you had.

    “Things were in this condition when we were startled by the
    news that the Mahdi’s people had arrived at Lado with three
    steamers and nine sandals and nuggers, and had established
    themselves on the site of the old station. Omar Sali, their
    general, sent up three peacock dervishes with a letter to the
    Pasha demanding the instant surrender of the country. The rebel
    officers seized them and put them into prison, and decided on
    war. After a few days the Mahdists attacked and captured Regaf,
    killing five officers and numbers of soldiers and taking many
    women and children prisoners, and all the stores and ammunition
    in the station were lost.

    “The result of this was a general stampede of the people from
    the stations of Biddon Kirri and Muggi, who fled with their
    women and children to Labore, abandoning almost everything. At
    Kirri the ammunition was abandoned and was seized by natives.
    The Pasha reckons that the Mahdists number about 1500. The
    officers and a large number of soldiers have returned to Muggi
    and intend to make a stand against the Mahdists.

    “Our position here is extremely unpleasant, for since the
    rebellion all is chaos and confusion. There is no head and
    half-a-dozen conflicting orders are given every day, and no
    one obeys. The rebel officers are wholly unable to control the
    soldiers. The Boris have joined the Mahdists. If they come down
    here with a rush, nothing can save us. The officers are all
    frightened at what has taken place and are anxiously awaiting
    your arrival, and desire to leave the country with you, for
    they are now really persuaded that Khartoum has fallen, and
    that you have come from the Khedive. We are like rats in a
    trap. They will neither let us act nor retire, and I fear,
    unless you come very soon, you will be too late, and our fate
    will be like that of the rest of the garrisons of the Soudan.
    Had this rebellion not happened, the Pasha could have kept the
    Mahdists in check some time, but now he is powerless to act.

    “I would suggest, on your arrival at Kavallis, that you write
    a letter in Arabic to Shukri Aga, chief of the Mswa Station,
    telling him of your arrival, and telling him that you wished to
    see the Pasha and myself. Write also to the Pasha or myself,
    telling us what number of men you have with you. It would,
    perhaps, be better to write me, as a letter to him might be
    confiscated. Neither the Pasha nor myself think there is the
    slightest danger now of any attempt to capture you, for the
    people are now fully persuaded that you are come from Egypt,
    and they look to you to get them out of their difficulties.
    Still it would be well for you to make your camp strong. If we
    are not able to get out of the country, please remember me to
    my friends, etc. Yours faithfully, JEPHSON.”

To this letter were appended two postscripts, the first dated November
24th, 1888. It ran:

    “Shortly after I had written you, the soldiers were led by
    their officers to attempt to retake Regaf, but the Mahdists
    defended it, and killed six officers and a large number of
    soldiers. Among the officers killed were some of the Pasha’s
    worst enemies. The soldiers in all the stations were so
    panic-stricken and angry at what happened that they declared
    they would not attempt to fight unless the Pasha was set at
    liberty. So the rebel officers were obliged to free him and
    send him to Wadilai, where he is free to do as he pleases; but
    at present he has not resumed authority in the country. He
    is, I believe, by no means anxious to do so. We hope in a few
    days to be at Tunguru Station, on the lake, two days’ steamer
    from Nsabe, and I trust when we hear of your arrival that the
    Pasha himself will be able to come down with me to see you.
    We hear that the Mahdists sent steamers down to Khartoum for
    reinforcements. If so, they cannot be up here for another six
    weeks. If they come up here with reinforcements, it will be all
    up with us, for the soldiers will never stand against them, and
    it will be a mere walk-over. Every one is anxiously looking
    for your arrival, for the coming of the Mahdists has completely
    cowed them. We may just manage to get out if you do not come
    later than the end of December, but it is entirely impossible
    to foresee what will happen.”

Jephson in a second postscript, dated December 18th, says:

    “Mogo, the messenger, not having started, I send a second
    postscript. We were not at Tunguru on November 25th. The
    Mahdists surrounded Duffle Station and besieged it for four
    days. The soldiers, of whom there were about 500, managed to
    repulse them, and they retired to Regaf, their headquarters,
    as they have sent down to Khartoum for reinforcements, and
    doubtless will attack again when strengthened. In our flight
    from Wadelai the officers requested me to destroy our boats
    and the advances. I therefore broke it up. Duffle is being
    renovated as fast as possible. The Pasha is unable to move hand
    or foot, as there is still a very strong party against him,
    and his officers no longer in immediate fear of the Mahdi. Do
    not on any account come down to us at my former camp on the
    lake near Kavalli Island, but make your camp at Kavalli, on the
    plateau above. Send a letter directly you arrive there, and
    as soon as we hear of your arrival I will come to you. Will
    not disguise facts from you that you will have a difficult and
    dangerous work before you in dealing with the Pasha’s people.
    I trust you will arrive before the Mahdists are reinforced, or
    our case will be desperate. Yours faithfully, (Signed) JEPHSON.”

Imagine the effect of such word as this on one who stood almost alone in
the midst of a continent, without power to face the disciplined forces
of the Mahdi, and with no open line of retreat. The best he could do for
the moment was write an assuring letter and dispatch it to the Nyanza as
quickly as possible, pushing on after it to Kavalli.

With Stanley, to resolve was to act. He accordingly sent word to Jephson
that he need have no anxiety on his (Stanley’s) account for he was in the
midst of natives who were not only friendly but ready to fight for him;
that on his arrival at Kavalli he would be in a condition to rescue Emin
and his attendants; and that every inducement must be brought to bear on
him to come southward on the lake with his command, if not still held

On Stanley’s arrival at Kavalli, he again wrote, under date of January
18th, 1889. And this letter, together with those which followed, reveals
a situation quite as embarrassing as the former one had been, for still
Emin seemed to be unaware of his danger. Stanley’s letter read:

“KAVALLI, January 18, 3 o’clock P.M.——My dear Jephson: I now send thirty
rifles and three Kavalli men down to the lake with my letters with my
urgent instructions that a canoe should be sent off and the bearers be
rewarded. I may be able to stay longer than six days here, perhaps ten
days. I will do my best to prolong my stay until you arrive without
rupturing the peace.

“Our people have a good store of beads and couriers cloth, and I notice
that the natives trade very readily, which will assist Kavalli’s
resources should he get uneasy under our prolonged visit. Should we get
out of this trouble I am his most devoted servant and friend but if he
hesitates again I shall be plunged in wonder and perplexity. I could save
a dozen Pashas if they were willing to be saved. I would go on my knees
and implore the Pasha to be sensible of his own case. He is wise enough
in all things else, even for his own interests. Be kind and good to him
for his many virtues, but do not you be drawn into the fatal fascination
the Soudan territory seems to have for all Europeans in late years. As
they touch its ground they seem to be drawn into a whirlpool which sucks
them in and covers them with its waves. The only way to avoid it is to
blindly, devotedly, and unquestioningly obey all orders from the outside.
The Committee said:

“Relieve Emin with this ammunition. If he wishes to come out the
ammunition will enable to do so. If he elects to stay it will be of
service to him. The Khedive said the same thing and added that if the
Pasha and his officers wished to stay, they could do so on their own
responsibility. Sir Evelin Baring said the same thing in clear, decided
words, and here I am after 4,100 miles travel with the last instalment
of relief. Let him who is authorized to take it, take it and come. I am
ready to lend him all my strength and will assist him, but this time
there must be no hesitation, but positive yea or nay, and home we go.
Yours sincerely, STANLEY.”

In the course of his correspondence Mr. Stanley says: “On February 6th
Jephson arrived in the afternoon at our camp at Kavalli. I was startled
to hear Jephson, in plain, undoubting words, say: “Sentiment is the
Pasha’s worst enemy. No one keeps Emin back but Emin himself.” This is
the summary of what Jephson learned during the nine months from May 25th,
1888, to February 6th, 1889. I gathered sufficient from Jephson’s verbal
report to conclude that during nine months neither the Pasha, Casati,
nor any man in the province had arrived nearer any other conclusion than
what was told us ten months before. However, the diversion in our favor
created by the Mahdists’ invasion and the dreadful slaughter they made of
all they met inspired us with hope that we could get a definite answer
at last. Though Jephson could only reply: ‘I really can’t tell you what
the Pasha means to do. He says he wishes to go away, but will not move.
It is impossible to say what any man will do. Perhaps another advance
by the Mahdists will send them all pell-mell towards you, to be again
irresolute and requiring several weeks’ rest.’”

Stanley next describes how he had already sent orders to mass the whole
of his forces ready for contingencies. He also speaks of the suggestions
he made to Emin as to the best means of joining him, insisting upon
something definite, otherwise it would be his (Stanley’s) duty to destroy
the ammunition and march homeward.

It seems that Stanley’s letters were beginning to have weight with Emin,
and that he was coming to think it cruel to subject his followers to
further danger, whatever opinion he entertained of his own safety. So on
the morning of February 13th, 1889, Stanley was rejoiced to receive in
his camp on the plateau above Kavalli, at the hands of a native courier,
a letter from Emin Pasha himself, which announced his arrival at Kavalli.
But let the letter speak for itself:

“Sir: In answer to your letter of the 7th inst., I have the honor to
inform you that yesterday I arrived here with my two steamers, carrying
a first lot of people desirous to leave this country under your escort.
As soon as I have arranged for a cover for my people, the steamers have
to start for Mswa Station to bring on another lot of people. Awaiting
transport with me are some twelve officers, anxious to see you, and only
forty soldiers. They have come under my orders to request you to give
them some time to bring their brothers from Wadelai, and I promised them
to do my best to assist them. Things having to some extent now changed,
you will be able to make them undergo whatever conditions you see fit
to impose upon them. To arrange these I shall start from here with
officers for your camp, after having provided for the camp, and if you
send carriers I could avail me of some of them. I hope sincerely that the
great difficulties you had to undergo and the great sacrifices made by
your expedition on its way to assist us may be rewarded by full success
in bringing out my people. The wave of insanity which overran the country
has subsided, and of such people as are now coming with me we may be
sure. Permit me to express once more my cordial thanks for whatever you
have done for us.

“Yours, EMIN.”

Thus the two heroes of African adventure came together on the west shore
of the lake which marked the southern boundary of Emin Pasha’s influence.
It was a trying meeting for both. Stanley was firm in his views and true
to the objects of his mission. Emin was still divided between his desire
to save all of his followers who were willing to go, and his sense of
obligation to those who chose to remain behind. In a modified form his
convictions, expressed in April, 1887, still held. He then said:

“The work that Gordon paid for with his blood I will strive to carry on,
if not with his energy and genius, still according to his intentions
and in his spirit. When my lamented chief placed the government of this
country in my hands, he wrote to me: “I appoint you for civilization
and progress sake.” I have done my best to justify the trust he had in
me, and that I have to some extent been successful and have won the
confidence of the natives is proved by the fact that I and my handful
of people have held our own up to the present day in the midst of
hundreds of thousands of natives. I remain here as the last and only
representative of Gordon’s staff. It therefore falls to me, and is my
bounden duty, to follow up the road he showed us. Sooner or later a
bright future must dawn for these countries; sooner or later these people
will be drawn into the circle of the ever advancing civilized world.
For twelve long years have I striven and toiled, and sown the seeds for
future harvest——laid the foundation stones for future buildings. Shall I
now give up the work because a way may soon open to the coast? never!”

As if anticipating the end, Stanley had already begun to call in the
detachments of his expedition. On February 18th Lieut. Stairs arrived
at Kavalli with his strong column from the remote Ituri. Meanwhile
negotiations were going on daily with Emin. The force he had brought
up the lake consisted of himself, Selim Bey, seven other officers, and
sixty-five people. Selim Bey became the spokesman for both Stanley
and Emin. He had just achieved a victory over the Madhi’s forces by
recapturing Duffle, killing 250 of the enemy and lifting the restraints
from Emin, himself. At length, on February 18th, the date of the arrival
of Lieut. Stairs, Selim, at the head of a deputation, announced to
Stanley a request on the part of Emin that he (Stanley) allow all the
equatorial troops and their families to assemble at Kavalli.

In reply Stanley explained fully the object of his expedition, and
offered to remain at Kavalli for a reasonable time in order to give
Emin’s forces an opportunity to join him. Selim and his deputation
retired satisfied, saying they would proceed at once to Wadelai and begin
the work of transportation. They started on February 26th. On the 27th,
Emin returned to Kavalli with his little daughter, Ferida, and a caravan
of 144 men. He and Stanley agreed that twenty days would be a reasonable
time in which to gather all the people and movables at Kavalli. These
twenty days were necessary to Stanley’s comfort, too, for much sickness
had prevailed among his forces, and now, under the ministrations of
Surgeon Parke, his active force had been raised from 200 to 280 men.

The refugees from Wadelai soon began to pour into Kavalli. They were a
mixture of soldiers, their wives and children, loaded with promiscuous
camp effects, most of which was practically rubbish, entailing great
labor in handling, and nearly all of which would have to be abandoned on
the subsequent march. Stanley saw the result of all this accumulation
and on March 16th issued orders to stop bringing the stuff to his camp.
But 1355 loads had already arrived, enough to embarrass the march of
ten times such a force as was then in camp. At this time Stanley was
gratified by a report from Selim announcing that the rebellious soldiers
and officers at Wadelai, and all of the people there, were anxious to
depart for Egypt under his escort. But while this was true of Wadelai, it
was not true of Kavalli, for Stanley discovered a conspiracy among the
promiscuous gathering there, which took the shape of a concerted attempt
on the part of Emin’s Egyptian soldiers to steal the arms of Stanley’s
Zanzibaris, and stir up general mutiny. Knowing that while Emin had been
praised for personal bravery and at the same time condemned for laxity of
discipline, and seeing that such a state of affairs would be fatal, both
in getting a start and in prosecuting a long march, Stanley decided on
immediate and resolute action. Forming his own men, armed with rifles,
into a square on the plateau, he ordered all of the Pasha’s people
into it. Those who refused to go, he arrested and forced in, or had
them placed in irons and flogged. They were then questioned as to their
knowledge of the conspiracy, but all denied having had anything to do
with it. Then all who desired to accompany Stanley were asked by Emin to
stand aside. They were told that the condition upon which they could go
was that of perfect obedience to Stanley’s orders as their leader, and
that extermination would speedily follow the discovery of any further
tricks. They promised a most religious obedience. This muster revealed
the fact that Emin’s followers numbered 600 people, necessitating the
enlistment of 350 new carriers. The entire number now ready for the march
was 1500 persons.

But on May 7th, Stanley received an intercepted letter from Selim Bey
which stated that the rebels at Wadelai had changed their mind, risen in
mutiny, and robbed the loyal forces of all their ammunition. They also
asked with the greatest effrontery that Stanley be called before them and
questioned as to his future objects before they consented to go with him.
The letter in addition contained hints of a plot to attack and capture
his expedition in case he started without giving them satisfaction.
Instantly Stanley assembled all the officers in his camp and asked them
if they felt he would be justified in remaining there after April 10th.
They all replied in the negative. Going to Emin, he said, “There Pasha,
you have your answer. We march on the 10th.” Emin asked whether they
could acquit him in their consciences for abandoning his people, alluding
to those who had not yet arrived from Wadelai. Stanley replied that they
could most certainly do so, as to all who had not arrived by the 10th.
All of Stanley’s accounts of this part of his expedition bear evidence of
trouble with Emin. He still trusted the rebellious soldiers, even those
who had agreed to leave for Egypt. He mistrusted Stanley’s ability to
reach Zanzibar with so numerous a caravan, on account of a lack of food.
He had left many valuable servants behind, whom he desired to take along,
but he said, “They are unwilling to accompany me.” This opened Stanley’s
eyes. He says, “It now became clear that the Pasha had lost his authority
at Wadelai, however obstinately he clung to his belief in his forces

May 10th came and Stanley started with his immense expedition for the
sea, his objective being Zanzibar, on the east coast of Africa. He had
promised Emin to march slowly for a few days in order to give Selim, with
such servants and stragglers as he might bring along, an opportunity to
overtake them, but he never saw them more. To pursue a route eastward
from Albert Nyanza was impracticable, for the powerful Unyoro and Uganda
tribes lay in that direction. These and other tribes had been infected
with the Mahdi spirit, and would therefore prove hostile. He therefore
chose a route in a southerly direction, till the extreme southern waters
of Victoria Nyanza had been rounded, when he would be on the natural
lines running from Zanzibar into the interior. Besides, this would bring
him through nearly 400 miles of practically undiscovered country.

Zanzibar, the objective point of the journey, is on an island of the same
name, twenty miles from the east coast of Africa, and in latitude 6°
South. It is a Mohammedan town of 30,000 people, with many good houses
and mosques. Though the soil is excellent and prolific of fruits and
vegetables, the town depends for its prosperity on trade and commerce.
When the slave trade was driven from the Atlantic coast of Africa, it
found its way to the eastern, or Pacific coast, and flourished in a
manner never before known. Zanzibar, always notorious as a slave depot,
became the recognized headquarters of the horrid traffic, and rapidly
rose to a position of great wealth and influence. Her slave market
attracted the notice and excited the disgust and indignation of strangers
of every creed and country. Nothing could be more revolting than sight
of the Arabic purchasers of slaves examining the build, the eyes, the
teeth, and all the physical qualities of the victims offered for sale
in the marts. Tens of thousands of slaves were known to pass through
Zanzibar annually on their way to various parts of Egypt and Turkey. On
the appearance of British cruisers on the coast, with orders to capture
and condemn all slave dhows, the Sultan of Turkey prohibited the traffic
at Zanzibar. But this only diverted its course. The next step was to
induce the Sultan to issue a general proclamation, prohibiting the trade
in all places on the coast, under his authority. This was done in 1876.
The result has been a considerable diminution of the infamous traffic,
which can now only be carried on by a system of smuggling, which incurs
much risk. Zanzibar is the most important starting point for travelers
and missionaries destined for Central Africa, and is a depot for such
supplies as may be needed from time to time.

[Illustration: SLAVE MARKET.]

From every point of view his route was well chosen. Skirting the Unyoro
country, he fell under their displeasure and became the victim of a
fierce attack, which he parried successfully. This opened his way for a
considerable distance along the ranges of mountains which pass under the
general name of the Baleggas These mountains rise to the immense height
of 18,000 to 19,000 feet, and their summits are capped with snow. The
huts of the natives were visible on their sides at altitudes of 8,000
feet. During their nineteen marches along the base of these ranges, their
severest obstacle was the Semliki river, a bold stream, 100 yards wide,
whose crossing was rendered doubly difficult by the Warasmas natives.
They formed an ambuscade, from which they delivered a single volley at
the travelers, but fortunately it proved ineffective. It did not take
much of a demonstration to put them to flight.

After a march of 113 days the southern waters of Victoria Nyanza were
reached. From this point Stanley sent letters to the coast stating that
his objective was now Mpwapwa, 230 miles inland, whither provisions
should be sent. This was done, and an armed escort was furnished him by
German officials thence to the coast, at Bagamoyo, opposite Zanzibar,
where the expedition arrived about December 1, 1889. Thence steamer was
taken to Zanzibar, where the hero of the expedition, together with Emin
Pasha, and all the officials, were received with open arms, fetes and
acclamations. Telegrams of congratulations poured in from crowned heads,
and all parts of the world. A sample from Queen Victoria types them all.
London, December 12th:

“My thoughts are after you and your brave followers, whose hardships
and dangers are at an end. I again congratulate you all, including
the Zanzibaris, who displayed such devotion and fortitude during your
marvelous expedition. I trust Emin Pasha is making favorable progress.”

One drawback to all these exultations at Zanzibar was the fact that Emin
Pasha, after escaping all the tribulations of the wilderness, had fallen
from the piazza of his hotel at Bagamoyo, on December 5th, and received
injuries of an alarming nature. The sad announcement of this clouded the
occasion somewhat, and gave a tone of melancholy to what would have been
unmixed gratulation.

In reply to a cablegram from the Emperor of Germany, Stanley said,
December 7th:

“Imperator et rex. My expedition has now reached its end. I have had
the honor to be hospitably entertained by Major Weismann and other of
your Majesty’s officers under him. Since arriving from Mpwapwa our
travels have come to a successful conclusion. We have been taken across
from Bagamoyo to Zanzibar by your Majesty’s ships Sperber and Schwalbe,
and all honors coupled with great affability, have been accorded
us. I gratefully remember the hospitality and princely affability
extended to me at Potsdam; and profoundly impressed with your Majesty’s
condescension, kindness and gracious welcome. With a full and sincere
heart I exclaim, long live the noble Emperor William.”

And writing for the general public, he says:

“Over and above the happy ending of our appointed duties, we have not
been unfortunate in geographical discoveries. The Aruwimi is now known
from its source to its bourne. The great Congo forest, covering as
large an area as France and the Iberian Peninsula, we can now certify
to be an absolute fact. The Mountains of the Moon this time, beyond the
least doubt, have been located, and Ruwenzori, “The Cloud King” robed
in eternal snow, has been seen and its flanks explored, and some of its
shoulders ascended, Mounts Gordon Bennett and Mackinnon cones being but
giant sentries warding off the approach to the inner area of ‘The Cloud

“On the south-east of the range the connection between Albert Edward
Nyanza and the Albert Nyanza has been discovered, and the extent of
the former lake is now known for the first time. Range after range of
mountains has been traversed, separated by such tracts of pasture land as
would make your cowboys out West mad with envy.

“And right under the burning Equator we have fed on blackberries and
bilberries, and quenched our thirst with crystal water fresh from snow
beds. We have also been able to add nearly six thousand square miles of
water to Victoria Nyanza.

“This has certainly been the most extraordinary expedition I have ever
led into Africa. A veritable divinity seems to have hedged us while we
journeyed. I say it with all reverence. It has impelled us whither it
would, effected its own will, but nevertheless guided and protected us.

“I gave as much good will to my duties as the strictest honor would
compel. My faith that the purity of my motive deserved success was firm,
but I have been conscious that the issues of every effort were in other

“Not one officer who was with me will forget the miseries he has endured,
yet everyone that started from his home destined to march with the
advance column and share its wonderful adventures is here to-day, safe,
sound and well.

“This is not due to me. Lieutenant Stairs was pierced with a poisoned
arrow like others, but others died and he lives. The poisoned tip came
out from under his heart eighteen months after he was pierced. Jephson
was four months a prisoner, with guards with loaded rifles around him.
That they did not murder him is not due to me.

“These officers have had to wade through as many as seventeen streams and
broad expanses of mud and swamp in a day. They have endured a sun that
scorched whatever it touched. A multitude of impediments have ruffled
their tempers and harassed their hours.

“They have been maddened with the agonies of fierce fevers. They have
lived for months in an atmosphere that medical authority declared to
be deadly. They have faced dangers every day, and their diet has been
all through what legal serfs would have declared to be infamous and
abominable, and yet they live.

“This is not due to me any more than the courage with which they have
borne all that was imposed upon them by their surroundings or the cheery
energy which they bestowed to their work or the hopeful voices which rang
in the ears of a deafening multitude of blacks and urged the poor souls
on to their goal.

“The vulgar will call it luck. Unbelievers will call it chance, but deep
down in each heart remains the feeling, that of verity, there are more
things in heaven and earth than are dreamed of in common philosophy.

“I must be brief. Numbers of scenes crowd the memory.

“Could one but sum them into a picture it would have grand interest. The
uncomplaining heroism of our dark followers, the brave manhood latent in
such uncouth disguise, the tenderness we have seen issuing from nameless
entities, the great love animating the ignoble, the sacrifice made by
the unfortunate for one more unfortunate, the reverence we have noted
in barbarians, who, even as ourselves, were inspired with nobleness and
incentives to duty——of all these we would speak if we could, but I must
end with, thanks be to God forever and ever!”

This letter is characteristic of Stanley. The hardships of his journey
will fade from memory, but its successes will become historic. He has
made the “Dark Continent” dark no longer. To him and his undaunted
comrades the world owes a debt of gratitude it will be difficult to
repay. The vast tracts of hitherto unknown wilderness through which
he traveled will stimulate the enterprise of the pioneer, and the day
is not far distant——within the lifetime of our children’s children,
perhaps——when the shrill echo of the engine’s whistle will be heard on
the rugged sides of snow capped mountains which Stanley has explored;
when those illimitable forests will resound with the woodman’s axe, and
when the law of commerce will change the tawny native from a savage into
a self-respecting citizen. Barbarism will retire from its last stronghold
on the planet, as the darkness disappears when the sun rises over the

The dire distresses of his long journey, begun two and a-half years ago,
are beyond the reach of language. He merely hints at some of them and
leaves the rest to the imagination. We ponder his pathetic references
to the sturdy loyalty of companions and followers, “maddened with the
agonies of fierce fevers,” falling into their graves through the subtle
poison with which the natives tipped their arrows and spears, bravely
fighting their way through interminable swamps only to succumb at last,
and the conviction steals over us that such a story has never been told
before and may never be told again. He rescued Emin and his comrades,
who were “in daily expectation of their doom,” then turned his face
southward, made various and important explorations on his way, and at
last came within speaking distance of the millions who followed him from
the hour he entered the mouth of the Congo with a solicitude which no
other man of our time has commanded.

It would not do to close any account of Stanley’s brilliant career
without noting the fact that Emin Pasha, in one of his last published
letters, written after he was beyond all danger from Mahdi vengeance and
African climate, fully acknowledges the value of the aid sent him, and
makes it clear that his hesitation at availing himself of it was due
to that high sense of duty which had gained him the name of Emin, or
the Faithful One. The last and most trusted of Gordon’s lieutenant’s,
he regarded it as his “bounden duty” to follow up the road the General
showed him; and it must have been a wrench to tear himself away from the
life-work to which he had in a measure consecrated himself——to see the
labors of years thrown away, and all his endeavors come to naught. But it
could not be helped under the circumstances, and Emin, like many before
him, has had to succumb to the force of fate. And so ends for the present
the attempt to civilize the equatorial Provinces of Egypt. The ruler
of Egypt has formally renounced them, Gordon is dead, and his trusted
lieutenant has at last thrown up the sponge. It has been a strange and
eventful story, in which the heroes have been of the race which has done
so much for the regeneration of the dark places of the world. For a time
the dark and turbid waves of ignorance, of slavery, and of cruelty will
roll back over this part of the Dark Continent and pessimists will say
that nothing more can be done. But it is only for a time. The day will
surely come when the dreams of Gordon and of Emin will become actual
realities; and when that time comes we may be sure that the name of Henry
M. Stanley will be remembered and honored.

                          EGYPT AND THE NILE.

The historic approach to “The Dark Continent” is by way of storied Egypt
and its wonderful river, the Nile. In making this approach we must not
forget the modern commercial value of the route from Zanzibar, pursued
by Stanley (1871-72) while hastening to the rescue of Dr. Livingstone,
the great English explorer, nor of that other, by way of the Congo, which
bids fair to prove more direct and profitable than any thus far opened.


It was an enterprise as bold as any of those undertaken by hardy mariners
to rescue their brother sailors who had met shipwreck while striving
to unfold the icy mysteries which surround the North Pole. And, unlike
many of these, it was successful. The two great explorers shook hands
in October 1871, at Ujiji, on the banks of Lake Tanganyika, in the very
heart of the great forest and river system of Africa, and amid dark
skinned, but not unkind, strangers, who constitute a native people as
peculiar in all respects as their natural surroundings.

We mention this because it was a great achievement in the name of
humanity. Livingstone had started on this, his last, exploring tour in
1866, and had been practically lost in African wilds for nearly four
years. But it was a greater achievement in the name of science and
civilization, for it not only proved that “The Dark Continent” was more
easily traversable than had been supposed, but it may be set down as the
beginning of a new era in African exploration.

In all ages Africa has been a wonderland to the outside world. As the
land of Cush, in Bible story, it was a mystery. It had no bounds, but was
the unknown country off to the south of the world where dim legend had
fixed the dark races to work out a destiny under the curse laid upon the
unfortunate Ham.

Even after Egypt took somewhat definite meaning and shape in Hebrew
geography as “The Land of Mizriam,” or the “Land of Ham,” all else in
Africa was known vaguely as Ethiopia, marvellous in extent, filled with
a people whose color supported the Hamitic tradition, wonderful in
animal, vegetable and mineral resources. Thence came Sheba’s queen to see
the splendors of Solomon’s court, and thence emanated the long line of
Candaces who rivalled Cleopatra in wealth and beauty and far surpassed
her in moral and patriotic traits of character.

In olden times the gateway to Africa was Egypt and the Nile. As an
empire, history furnishes nothing so curious as Egypt; as a river nothing
so interesting as her Nile. We may give to the civilization of China and
India whatever date we please, yet that of Egypt will prove as old. And
then what a difference in tracing it. That of China and India rests,
with a few exceptions, on traditions or on broken crockery tablets
and confused shreds of ruins. That of Egypt has a distinct tracery in
monuments which have defied the years, each one of which is a book full
of grand old stories. We can read to-day, by the light of huge pillar
and queer hieroglyphic, back to Menes, the first Egyptian King, and to
Abydos, the oldest Egyptian city, and though the period be 4500 years
before Christ, scarcely a doubt arises about a leading fact. There was
wealth then, art, civilization, empire, and one is ever tempted to
ascribe to Egypt the motherhood of that civilization which the Hebrew,
Indian, Etruscan, Persian, Roman, Greek and Christian, carved into other

Says the learned Dr. Henry Brugsch-Bey, who has spent thirty years among
Egyptian monuments and who has mastered their inscriptions, “Literature,
the arts, and the ideas of morality and religion, so far as we know, had
their birth in the Nile valley. The alphabet, if it was constructed in
Phœnicia, was conceived in Egypt, or developed from Egyptian characters.
Language, doubtless, is as old as man, but the visible symbols of
speech were first formulated from the hieroglyphic figures. The early
architecture of the Greeks, the Doric, is a development of the Egyptian.
Their vases, ewers, jewelry and other ornaments, are copies from the
household luxury of the Pharaohs.”

The influence of Egypt on the Hebrew race has a profound interest for the
whole Christian world. Let the time of Abraham be fixed at 1900 B.C. The
Great Pyramid of Egypt, built by the first Pharaoh of the fourth dynasty,
had then been standing for 1500 years. Egypt had a school of architecture
and sculpture, a recorded literature, religious ceremonies, mathematics,
astronomy, music, agriculture, scientific irrigation, the arts of war,
ships, commerce, workers in gold, ivory, gems and glass, the appliances
of luxury, the insignia of pride, the forms of government, the indices
of law and justice, 2000 years before the “Father of the Faithful” was
born, and longer still before the fierce Semitic tribes of the desert
gave forth their Hebrew branch, and placed it in the track of authentic

In the Bible we read of the “God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of
Jacob.” In the prayer of King Khunaten, dating long before any biblical
writing, we find a clear recognition of one God, and a reaching out of
the soul after him, embraced in a language without parallel for beauty of
expression and grandeur of thought. Ages before the giving of the law on
Sinai and the establishment of the Hebrew ceremonial worship, the “Book
of the Dead,” with its high moral precepts, was in the possession of
every educated Egyptian.

The Jews went out of Egypt with a pure Semitic blood, but with a modified
Semitic language. They carried with them in the person of their great
leader, Moses, “all the wisdom of the Egyptians.” This is shown by
their architecture, religious customs, vestments, persistent kindred
traditions. Both Moses and Jesus were of the race whose early lessons
were received with stripes from Egyptian masters. The hieroglyphical
writings of Egypt contained the possibilities of Genesis, the Iliad, the
Psalms, the Æneid, the Inferno, and Paradise Lost. In the thought that
planned the Hall of Columns upon the Nile, or sculptured the rock temple
of Ammon, was involved the conception of Solomon’s Temple, the Parthenon,
St. Peters, Westminster Abbey and every sacred fane of Europe and America.

Therefore, travel and exploration in this wonderful land, the remote
but undoubted source of letters, morals, sciences and arts, are always
interesting. Thebes, Memphis, Zoan-Tanis, Pitom, Tini, Philæ, Bubastis,
Abydos, are but as fragments of mighty monuments, yet each discloses
a story abounding in rich realities and more striking in its historic
varieties than ever mortal man composed. But for the powerful people that
made the Nile valley glow with empire, but for the tasteful people that
made it beautiful with cities and monuments, but for the cultured people
that wrote on stone and papyrus, were given to costly ceremonies, and who
dreamed of the one God, the Israelites would have recrossed the Isthmus
of Suez, or the Red Sea, without those germs of civilization, without
those notions of Jehovah, which made them peculiar among their desert
brethren, and saved them from absorption by the hardy tribes of Arabia
and Syria.

[Illustration: ROSETTA STONE.]

In going from Europe across the Mediterranean to Egypt, you may think
you can sail directly into one of the mouths of the Nile, and ascend that
stream till the first cataract calls a halt. But neither of the great
mouths of the Nile give good harbors. Like those of our own Mississippi,
they are narrow and exposed by reason of the deposits they continually
carry to the sea. The two main mouths of the Nile——it has had several
outlets in the course of time——are over a hundred miles apart. The
Western, or Rosetta, mouth was once the seat of a famed city from whose
ruins were exhumed (1799) the historic “Rosetta Stone,” now in the
British Museum. It was found on the site of a temple dedicated by Necho
II. to Tum, “The Setting Sun;” and the inscription itself, written in
three kinds of writing, Greek, hieroglyphic, and enchorial, or running
hand, was a decree of the Egyptian Priests assembled in synod at Memphis
in favor of Ptolomy Epiphanes, who had granted them some special favor.
Its great value consisted in the fact that it afforded a safe key to the
reading of the hieroglyphical writings found on all Egyptian monuments.

[Illustration: M. DE LESSEPS.]

The Eastern, or Damietta, mouth of the Nile gives a better harbor, but
the boats are slow. Beyond this is Port Said, where you can enter the
ship canal across the Isthmus of Suez and pass to the Red Sea. But you
are not now in the Egypt you seek. There are no verdant meadows and
forests of date palms and mulberry, which give to the interior of Lower
Egypt——covered with numerous villages and intersected by thousands of
canals——the picturesque character of a real garden of God. You only see a
vast sandy plain, stretching on either side of the canal. It is a sea of
sand with here and there little islands of reeds or thorny plants, white
with salty deposits. In spite of the blue sky, the angel of death has
spread his wings over this vast solitude where the least sign of life is
an event.

[Illustration: CLEOPATRA.]

Speaking of canals, reminds one that this Suez Canal, 100 miles long,
and built by M. de Lesseps, 1858-1869, was not the first to connect the
waters of the Red Sea with the Mediterranean. One was projected B.C. 610
by Pharaoh Necho, but not finished till the time of Ptolemy Philadelphus,
which ran from the Red Sea to one of the arms of the Nile. It was
practically out of use in the time of Cleopatra.

The best Mediterranean port of Egypt is Alexandria, the glory of which
has sadly departed. It is far to the west of the Rosetta mouth of the
Nile, but is connected by rail with Cairo. Though founded 330 B.C., by
Alexander the Great, conqueror of Egypt, as a commercial outlet, and
raised to a population, splendor and wealth unexcelled by any ancient
city, it is now a modern place in the midst of impressive ruins. Its
mixed and unthrifty population is about 165,000.

As you approach it you are guided by the modern light house, 180 feet
high, which stands on the site of the Great Light of Pharos, built
by Ptolemy II., 280 B.C., and which weathered the storms of sixteen
centuries, lighting the sea for forty miles around. It was of white
marble and reckoned as one of the “Seven Wonders of the World.”

Standing in the streets of Alexandria, what a crowd of historic memories
rush upon you. You are in Lower Egypt, the Delta of the Nile, the country
of the old Pharaohs whose power was felt from the Mediterranean to the
Mountains of the Moon, whose land was the “black land,” symbol of plenty
among the tribes of Arabia and throughout all Syria, land where the
Hebrews wrought and whence they fled back to their home on the Jordan,
land of the Grecian Alexander, the Roman Cæsar, the Mohammedan Califf.

[Illustration: PHAROS LIGHT.]

No earthly dynasty ever lasted longer than that of the Pharaohs. We
hardly know when time began it, but Brugsch dates it from Menes, B.C.
4400. It fell permanently with Alexander’s Conquest, 330 B.C., and was
held by his successors, the Greek Ptolemeys, for three hundred years,
or until the Romans took it from Cleopatra, whose name is perpetuated
in the famous Cleopatra’s Needles, which for nearly 2000 years stood as
companion pieces to Pompey’s Pillar.

The Pillar of Pompey, 195 feet high, still stands on high ground
southeast of the city, near the Moslem burial place. But the Needles
of Cleopatra are gone. Late investigations have thrown new light on
these wonders. They were not made nor erected in honor of Cleopatra at
all, but were historic monuments erected by the Pharaoh, Thutmes III.,
1600 B.C., at Heliopolis, “City of the Sun.” The two largest pair were,
centuries ago, transported, one to Constantinople, the other to Rome.
The two smaller pair were taken to Alexandria by Tiberius and set up
in front of Cæsar’s Temple, where they obtained the well known name of
“Cleopatra’s Needles.” One fell down and, after lying prostrate in the
sand for centuries, was taken to London in 1878 and set up on the banks
of the Thames. It is 68 feet high, and was cut out of a single stone from
the quarries of Syene. The other was taken down and transported to New
York, where it is a conspicuous object in Central Park. They bear nearly
similar inscriptions, of the time of Thutmes III. and Rameses II.

[Illustration: ALEXANDER THE GREAT.]

Egypt fell into the hands of the Saracen invaders in A.D. 625, and has
ever since been under Mohammedan or Turkish rule. The Alexandria of the
Ptolemeys with its half million people, its magnificent temples, its
libraries and museums, its learning and art, its commerce for all the
world, has lost all its former importance, and is to-day a dirty trading
town filled with a mixed and indolent people.


There is no chapter in history so sweeping and interesting as that
which closed the career of Alexandria to the Christian world. It was
the real centre of Christian light and influence. Its bishops were
the most learned and potential, its schools of Christian thought the
most renowned. It was in commerce with all the world and could scatter
influences wider than any other city. It had given the Septuagint version
of the Bible to the nations. All around, it had made converts of the
Coptic elements, which were native, and Egypt’s natural defenders in case
of war. But these it had estranged. Therefore the Saracen conquest was
easy. Pelusium and Memphis fell. Alexandria was surrounded, and fell A.D.
640. “I have taken,” says Amrou, “the great city of the west with its
4000 palaces, 4000 baths, 400 theatres, 12,000 shops, and 40,000 Jews.”
Amrou would have spared the great library of 700,000 volumes. But the
Califf’s (Omar’s) answer came, “These books are useless if they contain
only the word of God; they are pernicious if they contain anything else.
Therefore destroy them.”

Aside from the monuments above mentioned, there is little else to connect
it with a glorious past except the catacombs on the outskirts, which are
of the same general character as those at Rome. These catacombs possess a
weird interest wherever they exist. They abound in one form or another in
Egypt, and are found in many other countries where, for their extent and
curious architecture, they rank as wonders.

[Illustration: IN THE SERAPEION.]

Those lately unearthed in the vast Necropolis of Memphis, and called the
Serapeion, were the burial place of the Egyptian God Apis, or Serapis,
the supreme deity represented by the bull Apis. This sacred bull was not
allowed to live longer than twenty-five years. If he died before that
age, and of natural causes, he was embalmed as a mummy and interred
in the Serapeion with great pomp. Otherwise, he was secretly put to
death and buried by the priests in a well. In the Serapeion are some
magnificent sarcophagi in granite, and inscriptions which preserve the
Egyptian chronology from 1400 B.C. to 177 B.C.


[Illustration: ROMAN CATACOMBS.]

The great catacombs at Rome were the burial places of the early
Christians. It was supposed they were originally the quarries from
which the building stone of the city had been taken. But while this is
true of the catacombs of Paris, it is now conceded that those of Rome
were cut out for burial purposes only, less perhaps to escape from the
watchfulness of despotic power, than in obedience to a wish to remain
faithful to the traditions of the early church which preserved the Jewish
custom of rock or cave sepulture. These catacombs are of immense and
bewildering proportions. Their leading feature is long galleries, the
sides of which are filled with niches to receive the remains. At first
these galleries were on a certain level, twenty to thirty feet below the
surface. But as space was required, they were cut out on other levels,
till some of the galleries got to be as much as three hundred feet below
the surface. There are some attempts at carving and statue work about the
remains of illustrious persons, and many inscriptions of great historic
value, but in general they have been much abused and desecrated, and we
are sorry to say chiefly by Christian peoples, mostly of the time of
the Crusades, who found, or supposed they would find, rich booty, in
the shape of finger rings and other precious things laid away with the
dead. MacFarlane, in his book upon the catacombs, tells of a company
of gay young officers of the French army who entered them on a tour of
inspection. They had plenty of lights, provisions, wine and brandy,
and their exploration became a revel. They finally began to banter one
another about venturing furthest into the dark labyrinthine recesses.
One, as impious as he was daring, refused to leave the crypts till he
had visited all. Darting away, torch in hand, he plunged into gallery
after gallery, until his torch began to burn low and the excitement
of intoxication left him. With great difficulty he found his way back
to the chapel where he had left his companions. They were gone. With
still greater difficulty he reached the entrance to the catacomb. It
was closed. He shouted frantically, and madly beat upon the railings
with a piece of tombstone. But it was night and no one could hear. In
desperation he started back for the chapel. He fell through a chasm
upon crackling, crumbling bones. The shock to his nerves was terrible.
Crawling out, he reached the chapel, amid intolerable fear. He who had
many a time marched undauntedly on gleaming lines of bayonets and had
schooled himself to look upon death without fear, was not equal to the
trials of a night in a charnel house. His thirst became intolerable. He
stumbled upon a bottle left by his companions and, supposing it contained
water, drank eagerly of its contents. In a few moments the drink acted
with violence and, in his delirium, he became the victim of wild visions.
Spectres gathered around him. The bones of the dead rose and clattered
before him. Fire gleamed in eyeless skulls. Fleshless lips chattered and
shrieked till the caves echoed. Death must soon have been the result of
this fearful experience had not morning come and brought fresh visitors
to the catacombs, who discovered the young officer in a state of stupor
and took him to the hospital. For months he lay prostrate with brain
fever. He had been taught the weakness of man in that valley of the
shadow of death, and ever after gave over his atheistic notions, and
lived and died a christian.

You may leave Alexandria by canal for the Nile, and then sail to Cairo.
You will thus see the smaller canals, the villages, the peasantry, the
dykes of the Nile, the mounds denoting ruins of ancient cities. You will
see the wheels for raising water from the Nile by foot power, and will
learn that the lands which are not subject to annual overflow must be
irrigated by canals or by these wheels. You will see at the point where
the Nile separates into its Damietta and Rosetta branches, the wonderful
Barrage, or double bridge, intended to hold back the Nile waters for the
supply of Lower Egypt without the need of water wheels. It is a mighty
but faulty piece of engineering and does not answer its purpose. From
this to Cairo the country gets more bluffy and, ere you enter the city,
you may catch glimpses of the Pyramids off to the right.


But the speediest route from Alexandria is by rail. You are soon whirled
into the Moslem city. Cairo is not an ancient city, though founded
almost on the site of old Egyptian Memphis. It is Saracen, and was then
_Kahira_ (Cairo) “City of Victory,” for it was their first conquest under
Omar, after they landed and took Pelusium. It was greatly enlarged and
beautified by Saladin after the overthrow of the Califfs of Bagdad. It
dates from about A.D. 640.

It is a thickly built, populous (population 327,000) dirty, noisy, narrow
streeted, city on the east bank of the Nile. Its mosques, houses,
gardens, business, people, burial places, manners and customs, tell at a
glance of its Mohammedan origin. Its mosques are its chief attraction.
They are everywhere, and some of them are of vast proportions and great
architectural beauty. The transfer of the Mameluke power in Egypt to the
present Khedives was brought about by Mohammed Ali, an Albanian. The
Mamelukes were decoyed into the citadel at Cairo and nearly all murdered.
One named Emim Bey escaped by leaping on horseback from the citadel. He
spurred his charger over a pile of his dead and dying comrades; sprang
upon the battlements; the next moment he was in the air; another, and he
released himself from his crushed and bleeding horse amid a shower of
bullets. He fled; took refuge in the sanctuary of a mosque; and finally
escaped into the deserts of the Thebaid. The scene of this event is
always pointed out to travelers.

[Illustration: VEILED BEAUTY.]

It is a city divided into quarters——the European quarter, Coptic quarter,
Jewish quarter, water carriers’ quarters, and so on. The narrow streets
are lined with bazaars——little stores or markets, and thronged by a
mixed populace——veiled ladies, priests in robes, citizens with turbaned
heads, peddlers with trays on their heads, beggars without number, desert
Bedouins, dervishes, soldiers, boatmen and laborers.

Abraham sent Eliezer to find a wife for Isaac. Matrimonial agents still
exist in Cairo in the shape of Khatibehs, or betrothers. They are women,
and generally sellers of cosmetics, which business gives them opportunity
to get acquainted with both marriageable sons and daughters. They get to
be rare matchmakers, and profit by their business in a country where a
man may have as many wives as he can support.

Your sleep will be disturbed by the Mesahhar who goes about the city
every morning to announce the sunrise, in order that every good Moslem
may say his prayers before the luminary passes the horizon.

There is no end to the drinking troughs and fountains. Joseph’s well,
discovered and cleaned out by Saladin, is one of the leading curiosities.
It is 300 feet deep, cut out of the solid rock, with a winding staircase
to the bottom.

West of the Nile and nearly opposite Cairo, is the village of Ghiseh,
on the direct road to the pyramids, mention of which introduces us to
ancient Egypt and the most wonderful monuments in the world.

Menes, “the constant,” reigned at Tini. He built Memphis, on part of
whose site Cairo now stands, but whose centre was further up the Nile.
The Egyptian name was Mennofer, “the good place.” The ruins of Memphis
were well preserved down to the thirteenth century, and were then
glowingly described by an Arab physician, Latif. But the stones were
gradually transported to Cairo, and its ruins reappeared in the mosques
and palaces of that place.

Westward of the Nile, and some distance from it, was the Necropolis of
Memphis——its common and royal burying ground, with its wealth of tombs,
overlooked by the stupendous buildings of the pyramids which rose high
above the monuments of the noblest among the noble families who, even
after life was done, reposed in deep pits at the feet of their lords and
masters. The contemporaries of the third (3966 B.C. to 3766 B.C.), fourth
(3733 B.C. to 3600 B.C.) and fifth (3566 B.C. to 3333 B.C.) dynasties are
here buried and their memories preserved by pictures and writings on the
walls of their chambers above their tombs. This is the fountain of that
stream of traditions which carries us back to the oldest dynasty of that
oldest country. If those countless tombs had been preserved entire to us,
we could, in the light of modern interpretation, read with accuracy the
genealogies of the kings and the noble lines that erected them. A few
remaining heaps enable us to know what they mean and to appreciate the
loss to history occasioned by their destruction.

They have served to rescue from oblivion the fact that the Pharaohs of
Memphis had a title which was “King of Upper and Lower Egypt.” At the
same time he was “Peras,” “of the great house”——written Pharaoh in the
Bible. He was a god for his subjects, a lord par excellence, in whose
sight there should be prostration and a rubbing of the ground with noses.
They saluted him with the words “his holiness.” The royal court was
composed of the nobility of the country and servants of inferior rank.
The former added to dignity of origin the graces of wisdom, good manners,
and virtue. Chiefs, or scribes carried on the affairs of the court.

The monuments clearly speak of Senoferu, of the third dynasty, B.C. 3766.
A ravine in the Memphian Necropolis, where are many ancient caverns,
contains a stone picture of Senoferu, who appears as a warrior striking
an enemy to the ground with a mighty club. The rock inscriptions mention
his name, with the title of “vanquisher of foreign peoples” who in his
time inhabited the cavernous valleys in the mountains round Sinai.

The Pharaohs of the fourth dynasty were the builders of the hugest of the
pyramids. The tables discovered at Abydos make Khufu the successor of
Senoferu. Khufu is the Cheops of the historian Herodotus. His date was
3733 B.C.

No spirited traveler ever sets foot on the black soil of Egypt, without
gazing on that wonder of antiquity, the threefold mass of the pyramids
on the steep edge of the desert, an hour’s ride over the long causeway
extending out from Ghiseh. The desert’s boundless sea of yellow sand,
whose billows are piled up around the gigantic pyramids, deeply entombing
the tomb, surges hot and dry far up the green meadows and mingles with
the growing grass and corn. From the far distance you see the giant forms
of the pyramids, as if they were regularly crystalized mountains, which
the ever-creating nature has called forth from the mother soil of rock,
to lift themselves up towards the blue vault of heaven. And yet they are
but tombs, built by the hands of men, raised by King Khufu (Cheops) and
two other Pharaohs of the same family and dynasty, to be the admiration
and astonishment of the ancient and modern world.

[Illustration: PYRAMIDS OF EGYPT.]

We speak now of the three largest——there are six others in this group,
and twenty-seven more throughout the Nile valley. They are perfectly
adjusted to points of the compass——north, south, east and west. Modern
investigators have found in the construction, proportions and position of
the “Great Pyramid” especially, many things which point to a marvellous
knowledge of science on the part of their builders. If the half they
say is true of them, there are a vast number of lost arts to discredit
modern genius. Some go so far as to trace in their measurements and
construction, not only prophecy of the coming of Christ, but chart of
the events which have signalized the world’s history and are yet to make
it memorable. They base their reasoning on the fact that there was no
architectural model for them and no books extant to teach the science
requisite for their construction, that their height and bases bear
certain proportions to each other, and to the diameter of a great circle,
that they are on the line of a true meridian, that certain openings point
to certain stars, and so on till ingenuity is exhausted.


The three large pyramids measure thus

                                    Height        Breadth of base
  Khufu (Cheops),  Great Pyramid    450.75 feet   746    feet
  Khafra,          Second   “       447.5   “     690.75  “
  Menkara,         Third    “       203.    “     352.88  “

As soon as a Pharaoh mounted the throne he gave orders to a nobleman,
master of all the buildings, to plan the work and cut the stone. The
kernel of the future edifice was raised on the limestone rock of
the desert in the form of a small pyramid built in steps. Its well
constructed and finished interior formed the king’s eternal dwelling,
with his stone sarcophagus lying on the stone floor. Let us suppose this
first building finished while the king still lived. A second covering was
added on the outside of the first; then a third; then a fourth; and so
the mass of the giant building grew greater the longer the king lived.
Then at last, when it became almost impossible to extend the area of the
pyramid further, a casing of hard stone, polished like glass, and fitted
accurately into the angles of the steps, covered the vast mass of the
king’s sepulchre, presenting a gigantic triangle on each of its four
faces. More than seventy of such pyramids once rose on the margin of the
desert, each telling of a king, of whom it was at once the tomb and the

At present the Great Pyramid is, externally, a rough, huge mass of
limestone blocks, regularly worked and cemented. The top is flattened.
The outside polished casing, as well as the top, has been removed by the
builders of Cairo, for mosques and palaces, as have many of the finest
ruins on the Nile.

The Sphinx was sculptured at some time not far removed from the building
of the three great pyramids. Recent discoveries have increased the
astonishment of mankind at the bulk of this monstrous figure and at the
vast and unknown buildings that stood around it and, as it were, lay
between its paws. It is within a few years that the sand has been blown
away and revealed these incomprehensible structures. In a well near by
was found a finely executed statue of Khafra, builder of the second

There are other sphinxes, but this at the base of the Great Pyramid is
the largest. It has a man’s head and a lion’s body, and is supposed to
represent the kingly power of the sun god. Its length is 140 feet, and
height 30 feet. Between its paws is an altar, to which you ascend by a
long flight of steps. The Arabs call it “the fatherly terror.”

In the middle “chamber of the dead” of Menkara’s pyramid was found his
stone sarcophagus and its wooden cover, both beautifully adorned in the
style of a temple. They were taken out and shipped for England, but the
vessel was wrecked, and the sarcophagus now lies at the bottom of the
Mediterranean. The lid was saved and is now in the British Museum. On it
is carved a text or prayer to Osiris, king of the gods: “O Osiris, who
hast become king of Egypt, Menkara living eternally, child of heaven, son
of the divine mother, heir of time, over thee may she stretch herself and
cover thee, thy divine mother, in her name as mystery of heaven. May she
grant that thou shouldst be like god, free from all evils, king Menkara,
living eternally.”

[Illustration: SPHINX.]

The prayer is not uncommon, for parts of it have been found on other
monuments. Its sense is, “Delivered from mortal matter, the soul of the
dead king passes through the immense spaces of heaven to unite itself
with god, after having overcome the evil which opposed it on its journey
through earth.”

The entrance to the great pyramid was formerly quite concealed, only
the priests knowing where to find the movable stone that would admit
them. But now the opening is plain, and is about forty-five feet from
the ground on the north side. Thence there is a descent through a narrow
passage for 320 feet into the sepulchral chamber. The passage is much
blocked and difficult. The great red granite sarcophagus is there, empty
and broken, mute receptacle of departed greatness, for which the relic
hunter has had quite too little respect.

With the end of the fifth dynasty pyramid building ceased. The glory of
Memphis departed and went to Thebes, where kingly vanity seems to have
sought outlet in the temple architecture whose ruins are the wonder of
the world.

Above the old site of Memphis, is Toora, and out on its desert side are
the pyramids of Sakkarah, eleven in number. The most remarkable is the
Step Pyramid, believed to be more ancient than those of Ghiseh. But there
is something even more wonderful here——the Temple of Serapis, which it
took four years to disengage from the sands of the desert after its site
was discovered. It seems to have been dedicated to Serapis, the sacred
bull of Egypt. Beneath it is a great catacomb where once laid the remains
of thousands of sacred bulls. Their stone coffins are still there, cut
out of solid blocks of granite, and measuring fourteen feet long by
eleven feet high.

Further up the Nile are the high limestone cliffs of Gebel-et-Teyr, on
which perches the Coptic “Convent of the Pulley.” The monks who live here
are great beggars. They let themselves down from the cliff and swim off
to a passing boat to ask alms in the name of their Christianity.

The next town of moment is Siout, capital of Upper Egypt. It stands on
the site of ancient Lycopolis, “wolf city,” and is backed in by lofty
cliffs, from which the views are very fine. Further up is Girgeh, whence
you must take journey on the back of donkeys to Abydos, off eastward on
the edge of the desert. Here was the most ancient city of This, or Tini,
where Mena reigned, on whose ruins Abydos was built, itself an antiquity
and wonder. Here is the great temple begun by Seti I. and completed
by his son Rameses II., 1333 B.C. Rameses II., was the Pharaoh of the
Exodus. Its roof, pillars and walls are all preserved and the chiselling
on the latter is something marvellous. What renders it doubly interesting
is, the name of the sculptor is preserved. His name was Hi, and he must
have been a man of decided genius, for his picture of the king and son
taming the bull is quite spirited. In this temple is also the celebrated
sculpture called the “Table of Abydos,” which gives a list of sixty-five
kings, from Menes down to the last king of the twelfth dynasty, a period
of 2166 years. It is a most invaluable record and has done much to throw
light on Egyptian history. It was discovered in 1865. Abydos then, or
Tini, was the starting point of Egyptian power and civilization, as we
now know it. Here was the first dynasty of the Pharaohs, transferred
afterwards to Memphis where the pyramids became their monuments,
re-transferred to Thebes where the temples chronicled their greatness and
grandeur. Old as Thebes is, Abydos is older, and Tini older still. Most
carefully has the temple at Abydos been exhumed from the sand which has
preserved it for three thousand years, most of the time against the hands
of those who, knowing better, would have spoiled its fair proportions
and its great historic value. Abydos seems to have been a city of tombs,
and it is possible that the greatness of all Egypt sought it as a burial

The most powerful of these Theban Kings, were those of the twelfth
dynasty and on, beginning 2466 B.C., though Thebes can be traced back to
the sixth dynasty as a city. It was a period in which strong monarchs
ruled, and the arts were cultivated with magnificent results. Thebes
was the capital, and on its temples and palaces the most enormous labor
and expense were lavishly bestowed. And this not in Thebes alone, but
in all the cities of Egypt; and they all make history too, impressive,
invaluable history.

Siout owes its present importance to the caravan trade with Darfur
and Nubia. Passing on toward Thebes, the river banks get more and
more bluffy. You soon come to Dendera on the west bank. Its ruins are
magnificent, and by many regarded as the finest in Egypt. The portico
of its ancient temple is inconceivably grand. Its length is 265 feet and
height 60 feet. It is entirely covered with mystic, varied and fantastic
sculptures, hieroglyphics, groups, figures of deities, sacred animals,
processions of soldiers——in short the manners and mythology of all Egypt.
The workmanship is elaborate and finished. The interior is no less
beautiful. The roof contained a sculptured representation of the twelve
signs of the Zodiac. It has been taken down and is now in the museum at

A few miles further on in this bewildering region of solid rock bluffs,
immense quarries, deep sculptured caverns, you come to Thebes itself,
“City of the hundred gates,” lying on both sides of the Nile, the
reports of whose power and splendor we would regard as fabulous, were
its majestic ruins not there still to corroborate every glowing account.
Whatever of Egyptian art is older than that of the Theban era lacked
the beauty which moves to admiration. Beginning with the Theban kings
of the twelfth dynasty, the harmonious form of beauty united with truth
and nobleness meets the eye of the beholder as well in buildings as in
statues. The great labyrinth and the excavation for the artificial lake
Mœris, at Alexandria, were made during this period. In Tanis, at the
mouth of the Nile, was erected a temple whose inscriptions show not only
the manners of the country with great historic accuracy, but tell the
tale of frequent trade with the people from Arabia and Canaan.

The site of Thebes is an immense amphitheatre with the Nile in the
centre. At first you see only a confusion of portals, obelisks and
columns peeping through or towering above the palm trees. Gradually you
are able to distinguish objects, and the first that strikes you is the
ruins of Luxor on the eastern bank. They overlook the Arab village at
their base, and consist of a long row of columns and the huge gateway
of the Temple of Luxor. The columns are those of an immense portico,
and by them stood two beautiful obelisks, one of which is now in the
Place de la Concorde, Paris. The columns are monoliths, fully ten feet
in diameter, and many of them in a perfect state. All are covered with
inscriptions of various signification. This temple was built by Rameses
II., and is therefore not one of the oldest in Egypt, though not the
least interesting. On the westward or opposite side of the Nile is Memnon
and the temple home of Rameses II. There is little or nothing of the
temple there, but twin colossal statues stand in lonely desolation on the
plain, and these once guarded the temple entrance. One is perfect, the
other broken. Both measured sixty-four feet in height. They are sitting
giants carved from solid stone. They represented King Amenhotep, in whose
honor the temple was built. At their feet are small sitting statues, one
of his wife Thi, the other of his mother Mutem-ua, each carved out of
red sandstone mixed with white quartz, and each a marvellous exhibition
of skill in treating the hardest and most brittle materials. They stand
twenty-two feet apart. The northern, or broken one, is that which the
Greeks and Romans celebrated in poetry and prose as the “vocal statue
of Memnon.” Its legs are covered with inscriptions of Greek, Roman,
Phœnician and Egyptian travelers, written to assure the reader that they
had really visited the place or had heard the musical tones of Memnon at
the rising of the sun.

[Illustration: THE COLOSSI.]

In the year 27 B.C. the upper part of this statue was removed from its
place and thrown down by an earthquake. From that time on, tourists began
to mutilate it by cutting into it their befitting or unbefitting remarks.
The assurances that they had heard Memnon sing or ring ceased under the
reign of Septimius Severus who completed the wanting upper part of the
body as well as he could with blocks of stone piled up and fastened
together. It is a well known fact that split or cracked rocks, after
cooling during the night, at the rising of the sun or as soon as the
stone becomes warm, may emit a prolonged ringing note. After the statue
was restored in the manner above described, the sound, if ever it emitted
any, naturally ceased. The crack was covered by the masonry.


The story of the architect of this temple is told in the hieroglyphics.
That part which relates to these two memorable statues tells how he
conceived them without any order from the king, cut them out of solid
rock, and employed eight ships to move them from the quarries down
the Nile to Memphis. Even in our highly cultivated age, with all its
inventions and machines which enable us by the help of steam to raise and
transport the heaviest weights, the shipment and erection of the mammoth
statues of Memnon remain an insoluble riddle. Verily the architect,
Amenhotep the son of Hapoo, must have been not only a wise but a
specially ingenious man of his time.

Back of the Memnon Statues and the ruins of the “Palace Temple,”
which they guarded, and 500 yards nearer the Lybian desert, stood the
Rameseion. It was both palace and temple. It is finely situated on the
lowest grade of the hills as they begin to ascend from the plain, and
its various parts occupy a series of terraces, one rising above the
other in a singularly impressive and majestic fashion. Its outer gateway
is grandly massive. Sculptures embellish it, very quaint and vivid.
It formed the entrance to the first court, whose walls are destroyed.
Some picturesque Ramessid columns remain, however; and at their foot
lie the fragments of the hugest statue that was ever fashioned by
Egyptian sculptor. It was a fitting ornament for a city of giants; such
an effigy as might have embellished a palace built and inhabited by
Titans. Unhappily, it is broken from the middle; but when entire it must
have weighed about 887 tons, and measured 22 feet 4 inches across the
shoulders, and 14 feet 4 inches from the neck to the elbow. The toes are
from 2 to 3 feet long. The whole mass is composed of Syene granite; and
it is offered as a problem to engineers and contractors of the present
day,——How were nearly 900 tons of granite conveyed some hundreds of
miles from Syene to Thebes? It is equally difficult to imagine how,
in a country not afflicted by earthquakes, so colossal a monument was

Such was the Rameseion. It looked towards the east, facing the
magnificent temple at Karnak. Its propylon, or gateway, in the days
of its glory, was in itself a structure of the highest architectural
grandeur, and the portion still extant measures 234 feet in length.
The principal edifice was about 600 feet in length and 200 feet in
breadth, with upwards of 160 columns, each 30 feet in height. A wall of
brick enclosed it; and a dromos, fully 1600 feet long, and composed of
two hundred sphinxes, led in a northwesterly direction to a temple or
fortress, sheltered among the Libyan hills.

This period of temple building and ornamentation which makes Thebes as
conspicuous in Egyptian history as pyramid building had made Memphis,
extended over several dynasties, and practically ended with the twentieth
(1200 B.C. to 1133 B.C.) which embraced the long line of Rameses, except
Rameses I. and II. This was the time of the Hebrew captivity and of the


The most illustrious of all these kings——the Alexander the Great of
Egyptian history——was Thutmes III., who reigned for 53 years, and carried
Egyptian power into the heart of Africa as well as Asia. Countless
memorials of his reign exist in papyrus rolls, on temple walls, in tombs
and even on beetles and other ornaments. These conquests of his brought
to Egypt countless prisoners of every race who, according to the old
custom, found employment in the public works. It was principally to
the great public edifices, and among those especially to the enlarged
buildings of the temple at Amon (Ape) near Karnak, that these foreigners
were forced to devote their time.

Though Karnak is several miles further up the Nile, and on the same side
as Luxor, it is in the same splendid natural amphitheatre, and is a part
of the grand temple system of Thebes and its suburbs. Let us visit its
magnificent ruins before stopping to look in upon Thebes proper.

[Illustration: SPHINX OF KARNAK.]

The Karnak ruins surpass in imposing grandeur all others in Egypt and
the world. The central hall of the Grand Temple is a nearly complete
ruin, but a room has been found which contained a stone tablet on which
Thutmes III. is represented as giving recognition to his fifty-six royal
predecessors. This valuable historic tablet has been carried away and
is now in Paris. This temple was 1108 feet long and 300 wide. But this
temple was only a part of the gorgeous edifice. On three sides were other
temples, a long way off, yet connected with the central one by avenues
whose sides were lined with statuary, mostly sphinxes. Many of the latter
are yet in place, and are slowly crumbling to ruin. Two colossal statues
at the door of the temple now lie prostrate. Across the entire ruins
appear fragments of architecture, trunks of broken columns, mutilated
statues, obelisks, some fallen others majestically erect, immense halls
whose roofs are supported by forests of columns, and portals, surpassing
all former or later structures. Yet when the plan is studied and
understood, its regularity appears wonderful and the beholder is lost in
admiration. Here are two obelisks, one 69 feet high, the other 91 feet,
the latter the highest in Egypt, and adorned with sculptures of perfect
execution. One hundred and thirty-four columns of solid stone, each
seventy feet high and eleven in diameter, supported the main hall of the
temple which was 329 feet by 170 feet. The steps to the door are 40 feet
long and 10 wide. The sculptures were adorned with colors, which have
withstood the ravages of time. Fifty of the sphinxes remain, and there is
evidence that the original number was six hundred.

[Illustration: GATEWAY AT KARNAK.]

All who have visited this scene describe the impression as superior
to that made by any earthly object. Says Denon, “The whole French
army, on coming in sight of it, stood still, struck as it were with an
electric shock.” Belzoni says: “The sublimest ideas derived from the
most magnificent specimens of modern architecture, cannot equal those
imparted by a sight of these ruins. I appeared to be entering a city of
departed giants, and I seemed alone in the midst of all that was most
sacred in the world. The forest of enormous columns adorned all round
with beautiful figures and various ornaments, the high portals seen at
a distance from the openings to this vast labyrinth of edifices, the
various groups of ruins in the adjoining temples——these had such an
effect as to separate me in imagination from the rest of mortals, and
make me seem unconscious whether I was on earth or some other planet.”

And Karnak, like all Nile scenes, is said to be finer by moonlight than
sunlight. But you must go protected, for the wild beast does not hesitate
to make a lair of the caverns amid these ruins. Human vanity needs no
sadder commentary.

This temple was the acme of old Egyptian art. Its mass was not the
work of one king, but of many. It therefore measures taste, wealth and
architectural vigor better than a book. But its founder, Thutmes III.,
left similar monuments to his power. They have been traced in Nubia, in
the island of Elephantine, in various cities of northern Egypt, and even
in Mesopotamia.

[Illustration: A MUMMY.]

In Central Thebes you meet with ruins of the home palace or dwelling
place of Rameses III. The king’s chamber can be traced by the character
of the sculptures. You see in these the king attended by the ladies of
his harem. They are giving him lotus flowers and waving fans before him.
In one picture he sits with a favorite at a game of draughts. His arm
is extended holding a piece in the act of moving. And so the various
domestic scenes of the old monarch appear, reproducing for us, after
a period of 3500 years, quite a history of how things went on in the
palaces of royalty upon the Nile.

The tombs of Thebes surpass all others in number, extent and splendor.
They are back toward the desert in the rocky chain which bounds it.
Here are subterranean works which almost rival the pyramids in wonder.
Entrance galleries cut into the solid rock lead to distant central
chambers where are deposited the sarcophagi which contained the bodies
of the dead. The walls everywhere, and the sarcophagi, or stone coffins,
are elaborately sculptured with family histories, prayers, and all the
ornaments which formed the pride of the living. Festivals, agricultural
operations, commercial transactions, hunts, bullfights, fishing and
fowling scenes, vineyards, ornamental grounds, form the subject of
these varied, interesting and truly historic sketches. The chambers
and passages which run in various directions contain mummies in that
wonderful state of preservation which the Egyptians alone had the art of
securing. They are found wrapped in successive folds of linen, saturated
with bitumen, so as to preserve to the present the form and even the
features of the dead. Alas! how these sacred resting places have been
desecrated. The sarcophagi have been broken and carried away, and the
mummified remains that rested securely in their niches for thousands of
years have been dragged out to gratify the curiosity of sight seers in
all quarters of the globe.

[Illustration: TEMPLE AT EDFOU.]

[Illustration: TEMPLE COURT AT PHILÆ.]

Beyond Thebes, the Nile enters a narrow sand-stone gorge. But just before
you enter this you pass the very wonderful temple of Edfou, in almost a
perfect state of preservation, further testimonial to the wealth, power
and art of those old Theban kings. Entering the gorge, the rocks overhang
the river for miles on miles. You are now in the midst of the sandstone
quarries whence were drawn the material for many a statue and temple.
At the head of the gorge is Assouan, trading point for the Soudan and
Central Africa. It is the ancient Syene, and is the real quarrying ground
of Egypt. The red granite from the steps of Syene is in the pyramids and
all the mighty monuments of the Nile valley. Entering the vast quarries
here, you can see a large obelisk not entirely detached from the solid
rock, lying just as it was left by the workmen thousands of years ago.
There are also half finished monuments of other forms still adhering to
their mother rock, and a monstrous sarcophagus which had for some reason
been discarded ere it was quite finished.

In the river opposite Assouan is the Island of Elephantine or “Isle of
Flowers,” on which are the ruins of two temples of the Theban period.
Three miles above is the first cataract of the Nile, which was reckoned
as the boundary of Upper Egypt.

You are now 580 miles south of Cairo and 730 from the Mediterranean, on
the borders of Nubia. Assouan is a border town now, with 4000 people, but
in the time of old Theban kings, Syene was not on the margin of their
empire and glory, nor did the wonders of the Nile valley cease here. A
short way above Assouan is the beautiful island of Philæ, the turning
point of tourists on the Nile, crowned with its temples, colonnades and
palms and set in a framework of majestic rocks and purple mountains. The
island was especially dedicated to the worship of Isis, and her temple
is yet one of the most beautiful of Egyptian ruins, as much of the
impressive coloring of the interior remains uninjured. The ruins of no
less than eight distinct temples exist here, some of which are as late as
the Roman occupation of Egypt.

One hundred and twenty miles above, or south of, the first cataract
of the Nile, thirty-six miles north of the last, and quite within the
borders of Nubia, the traveller, struck hitherto with the impoverished
aspect of the country, suddenly pauses with astonishment and admiration
before a range of colossal statues carved out of the rocky side of a hill
of limestone, the base of which is washed by the famous river.

For centuries the drifting sands of the desert had accumulated over the
architectural wonders of Ipsambul, and no sign of them was visible except
the head of one gigantic statue.

No traveler seems to have inquired what this solitary landmark meant;
whether it indicated the site of a city, a palace, or a tomb; until, in
1717, the enthusiastic Belzoni undertook the work of excavation. His
toil was well rewarded; for it brought to light a magnificent specimen
of the highest Egyptian art; a specimen which, with Champollion, we may
confidently attribute to the palmiest epoch of Pharaonic civilization.


Every voyager who visits Ipsambul seems inspired with more than ordinary
feelings of admiration.

Here, exclaims Eliot Warburton, the daring genius of Ethiopian
architecture ventured to enter into rivalry with Nature’s greatness, and
found her material in the very mountains that seemed to bid defiance to
her efforts.

You can conceive nothing more singular and impressive, says Mrs. Romer,
than the façade of the Great Temple; for it is both a temple and a cave.
Ipsambul, remarks Sir F. Henniker, is the _ne plus ultra_ of Egyptian
labor; and in itself an ample recompense for the labor of a voyage up
the Nile. There is no temple, of either Dendera, Thebes, or Philæ, which
can be put in competition with it; and one may well be contented to
finish one’s travels with having seen the noblest monument of antiquity
in Nubia and Egypt.

There are two temples at Ipsambul——one much larger than the other; but
each has a _speos_, or cavern, hewn out of the solid rock. Let us first
visit the more considerable, consecrated by Rameses II. to the sun-god
Phrah, or Osiris, whose statue is placed above the entrance door. An
area of 187 feet wide by 86 feet high is excavated from the mountain,
the sides being perfectly smooth, except where ornamented by relievos.
The façade consists of four colossal statues of Rameses II. seated, each
65 feet high, two on either side of the gateway. From the shoulder to
the tiara they measure 15 feet 6 inches; the ears are 3 feet 6 inches
long; the face 7 feet; the beard 5 feet 6 inches; the shoulders 25 feet 4
inches across. The moulding of each stony countenance is exquisite.


The beauty of the curves is surprising in stone; the rounding of the
muscles and the flowing lines of the neck and face are executed with
great fidelity.

Between the legs of these gigantic Ramessids are placed four statues of
greatly inferior dimensions; mere pigmies compared with their colossal
neighbors, and yet considerably larger than ordinary human size. The
doorway is twenty feet high. On either side are carved some huge
hieroglyphical reliefs, while the whole façade is finished by a cornice
and row of quaintly carved figures underneath a frieze of 21 monkeys,
each eight feet high and six feet across the shoulders. Passing the
doorway you enter a vast and gloomy hall. Here is a vast and mysterious
aisle whose pillars are eight colossal giants on whom the rays of heaven
never shone. They stand erect, with hands across their stony breasts;
figures of the all-conquering Rameses, whose mitre-shaped head dresses,
each wearing in front the serpent, emblem of royal power, nearly touch
the roof. They are all perfectly alike; all carry the crosier and
flail; every face is characterized by a deep and solemn expression. How
different from the grotesque and often unclean monsters which embody
the Hindoo conception of Divine attributes! They are the very types of
conscious power, of calm and passionless intellect; as far removed from
the petty things of earth as the stars from the worm that crawls beneath
the sod.


These images of the great king are supported against enormous pillars,
cut out of the solid rock; and behind them run two gorgeous galleries,
whose walls are covered with historical bas-reliefs of battle and
victory, of conquering warriors, bleeding victims, fugitives, cities
besieged, long trains of soldiers and captives, numerous companies of
chariots, all combined in a picture of great beauty and impressive effect.

This entrance chamber is 57 feet by 52 feet. It opens into a cellar 35
feet long, 25-1/2 feet wide and 22 feet high, and is supported in the
centre by four pillars each three feet square. Its walls are embellished
by fine hieroglyphs in an excellent state of preservation. Behind is
a smaller chamber where, upon thrones of rock, are seated the three
divinities of the Egyptian trinity Ammon-Ra, Phrah and Phtah, accompanied
by Rameses the Great, here admitted on an equality with them. On either
side of the outer entrance are doors leading to rooms hewn out of solid
rock. They are six in number and each is profusely ornamented with lamps,
vases, piles of cakes and fruits and other offerings to the Gods. The
lotus is painted in every stage of its growth, and the boat is a frequent
symbol. These bas-reliefs seem to have been covered with a stucco which
was painted in various colors. The ground color of the ceiling is blue
and covered with symbolic birds. Well may Champollion exclaim: “The
temple of Ipsambul is in itself worthy a journey to Nubia;” or Lenormant
say, “It is the most gigantic conception ever begotten by the genius of
the Pharaohs.” It is a temple of Rameses II., of the nineteenth Theban
dynasty, who figures as the Sesostris of the Greeks.

Hardly less interesting is the Little Temple of Ipsambul, dedicated to
Athor, or Isis, the Egyptian Venus, by the queen of Rameses the Great.
Either side of its doorway is flanked by statues thirty feet high,
sculptured in relief on the compact mass of rock, and standing erect with
their arms by their sides. The centre figure of each three represents the
queen as Isis, her face surmounted by a moon within a cow’s horns. The
other images are intended for King Rameses himself. Beneath the right
hand of each are smaller statues representing the three sons and three
daughters of the king and queen.

A portion of the rock, measuring one hundred and eleven feet in length,
has been excavated to make room for the façade of the temple. The devices
begin on the northern side with an image of Rameses brandishing his
falchion, as if about to strike.


Athor, behind him, lifts her hand in compassion for the victim; Osiris,
in front, holds forth the great knife, as if to command the slaughter.
He is seated there as the judge, and decides the fate of the peoples
conquered by the Egyptian king. The next object is a colossal statue
of about thirty feet high, wrought in a deep recess of the rock: it
represents Athor standing, and two tall plumes spring from the middle of
her head-dress, with the symbolic crescent on either side. Then comes
a mass of hieroglyphics, and above them are seated the sun-god and the
hawk-headed deity Anubis. On either side of the doorway, as you pass into
the pronaos, offerings are presented to Athor,——who holds in her hand
the lotus-headed sceptre, and is surrounded with a cloud of emblems and
inscriptions. This hall is supported by six square pillars, all having
the head of Athor on the front face of their capitals; the other three
faces being occupied with sculptures, once richly painted, and still
exhibiting traces of blue, red, and yellow coloring. The shafts are
covered with hieroglyphs, and emblematical representations of Osiris,
Athor, Kneph, and other deities.

If these sacred edifices inspire a feeling of awe in the spectator, while
in ruin, what must their effect have been when their shrines contained
their mystics’ images; when the open portals revealed their sculptures
and the walls their glowing colors to the worshipping multitudes; when
the roofs shone with azure and gold; when the colossal forms represented
the deities in whom they reposed their faith; when processions of kings,
nobles and priests marched along their torch lit aisles; when incense
filled the air and the vaults resounded with the music of ten thousand
voices; when every hieroglyph and emblem had a meaning to the kneeling
votary, now forgotten or never known?

Numerous other Nubian temples bear witness to Egyptian prowess, wealth,
patience and religious sentiment. That at Derr is cut out of the solid
rock to a depth of 110 feet, and its grand entrance chamber is supported
by six columns representing Osiris. It was built in honor of the great
Rameses. At Ibrim are four rock temples, all of the time of the Theban
kings. And so the traveler up the Nile, and into the domains of far off
Nubia, is continually meeting with these vast rock temples, monuments of
the Egyptian kings on the one hand, tombs of the nobility on the other,
and worshiping halls for all.

Returning to Egypt and passing down the eastern arm of the Nile to Tanis,
or Beni-Hassan, where the Hebrews and Arabs were wont to trade with the
Egyptians, we find one of the oldest authentic monuments, except the
pyramids, and certainly the most interesting to us. It is the tomb of a
nobleman under Usurtasen II. B.C. 2366. The rich paintings on the walls
of this tomb are of inestimable value as showing the arts, trades, and
domestic, public and religious institutions of the Egyptians at this
period. They are still more valuable in an historic view, for they relate
to the arrival of a family of thirty-seven persons from the Hebrew or
Semitic nation, who had come to fix their abode on the blessed banks of
the Nile. The father of the family is represented as offering a gift to
the king. Behind him are his companions, bearded men, armed with lances,
bows and clubs. The women are dressed in the lively fashion of the Amu
tribe, to which the family belongs. The children and asses are loaded
with baggage. A companion of the party is standing by with a lyre of very
old form. The gift of the father, or patriarch, was the paint of Midian,
an article highly prized by the Egyptians. Many persons have been eager
to associate this inscription, or sculpture, with the arrival of the sons
of Jacob in Egypt, to implore the favor of Joseph; but it antedates that
event so far that there can be no possible connection between them. It
does show however that arrivals in Egypt from Arabia and Palestine, for
purposes of trade and even permanent residence, were not confined by any
means to the scriptural period.


But where in Egypt do these wonders of monument, of sculpture, of sacred
writing, not exist? We find them everywhere, telling of a people full of
genius and the germs of all civilization. You read as you could not read
from a book, for there is no conflict of sentiment, no odd statements to
reconcile. And what do you read? That the art of writing was familiar
to priest and scribe. That they had ships, for their inscriptions show
handsome nautical designs. There are glass blowers, flax dressers,
spinners, weavers, and bales of cloth. There are potters, painters,
carpenters, and statuaries. There is a doctor attending a patient and a
herdsman physicking cattle. The hunters employ arrows, spears and the
lasso. There is the Nile full of fish and a hippopotamus among the ooze.
There is the bastinado for the men and the flogging of a seated woman.
There are games of ball and other amusements for men and women. And then
the luxuries! There are harpers, costly garments, patterns of every
design, fashions for the hair, costly spices and perfumes. They have
portrayed every type of life and business with a faithfulness which is


The most mysterious of Egyptian monuments is “The Caves of the
Crocodiles,” or Grottoes of Samoun, in Upper Egypt. They are not often
visited because travelers are repelled at the outset by their difficulty
and gloom. They are filled with an incalculable number of human mummies,
and those of the crocodile, birds and reptiles. Whence they came is
not known, but, it is supposed, from Monfalout and Hermenopolis on the
opposite side of the Nile. An English traveler, M. A. Georges, penetrated
them after great trouble, and was horrified to find within the dark
grottoes the remains of a traveler who had been overcome by famine and
exhaustion. He says,

“On raising our eyes we perceived a horrid spectacle. A corpse still
covered with its skin was seated on the rounded fragment of a rock. Its
aspect was hideous. Its arms were outstretched, its head thrown back. His
neck was bent with the death agony. His emaciated body, eyes enlarged,
chin contracted, mouth twisted and open, hair erect on his head, every
feature distorted by suffering——these gave him a horrible appearance.


“It made one shudder; involuntarily one thought of one’s-self. His
shrunken hands dug their nails into the flesh; the chest was split open,
displaying the lungs and tracheal artery; on striking the abdomen, it
resounded hoarsely, like a cracked drum.

“Undoubtedly this man had been full of vital force when seized by death.
Undoubtedly he had lost himself in these dark galleries, and his lantern
having flickered out, he had vainly sought the track leading to the upper
air, shouting in frenzied tones which none could hear; hunger, thirst,
fatigue, terror, must have driven him nearly mad; he had seated himself
on this stone, and howled despairingly until death had mercifully come
to his relief. The warm humidity and the bituminous exhalations of the
cavern had so thoroughly interpenetrated his body, that now his skin was
black, tanned, imperishable, like that of a mummy. It was eight years
since the poor wretch had been lost.

“On quitting this spot of mournful memory, we turned to the left through
a corridor whose roof and walls were blackened by bituminous vapors, and
in which it was possible to walk upright. Thousands of bats, attracted
by the torches, assailed us with a whirr of wings, and considerably
impeded our progress. We then arrived at the most interesting part of
the grottoes: the soil, which gave way beneath our feet, was composed of
the débris of mummies and their swathings; at every step arose a black,
acrid, nauseating dust, as bitter as a compound of soot and aloes. An
enormous number of crocodiles of all sizes encumber the galleries. Some
are black, some corpulent, some gigantic, some not larger than lizards.
The human mummies and those of birds are side by side with them.” The
travelers did not reach the end of these interminable galleries. The heat
was intense, and they grew tired of sickening impressions.

The mystery of the Nile regions above Kartoum were unlocked to geography
and the scientific world more largely by Colonel Baker’s armed expedition
than by any other. We shall soon have the pleasure of following him
to Lake Albert Nyanza in company with his faithful wife, on a journey
of exploration, but before doing so let us see what he did in the
Upper Nile valley in an armed way and in the name of humanity and that
civilization of which we all are justly proud, and thus complete our
story of the wonderful river on which Egypt depends for its sustenance.

Colonel Baker, on his trip to Albert Nyanza found that at least 15,000
Arabs, subjects of the Khedive of Egypt, were engaged in the African
slave trade, with head-quarters at Kartoum, and mostly in the pay of
merchants there. They were nothing but cruel brigands, well armed and
officered, and equal to any outrage on the natives to secure slaves and
other booty. They sowed the seeds of anarchy throughout Africa, and
contributed to the suspicion, treachery, black-mailing, and every evil
that cropped out in the chiefs of the African tribes.

He determined to attack this moral cancer by actual cautery at the very
root of the evil. These brigands were cowardly, and, he thought, could
be crushed by a show of force, provided it emanated from the Khedive,
the only sovereign they acknowledge. Therefore the Khedive was asked for
authority, which he conferred, and Baker started having full power to
suppress the slave trade, to reduce the countries south of Gondokoro,
to annex them, to open navigation to the lakes under the equator, to
establish military stations, to mete out death to all opponents, to
govern all countries south of Gondokoro.

He took Lady Baker and a goodly number of English assistants along,
contracted for provisions for four years, supplied himself with money,
trinkets, tools, and a total of 36 vessels, six of which were small
steamers, to be increased to 55 vessels and 9 steamers at Kartoum. The
armed force consisted of 1,645 troops, 200 of which were cavalry, and two
batteries of artillery. The troops were of the forces of the Khedive,
half Egyptians and half natives of Soudan, the latter colored and by far
the best warriors. There is something to be admired in these Soudanese
soldiers. They are active, willing, brave and perfectly submissive to
kind discipline. They have taste, skill and are acclimated. In their
tribes they perpetuate traits which must have come down from old Egyptian
times. Among the wives, especially of chiefs a favorite head dress is
one which is supposed to reflect the appearance of the honored sphinxes,
and it is, to say the least, very becoming.


Every precaution was taken to have all assemble at Kartoum, but the
expedition was not popular in Egypt, the boats could not be gotten over
the Nile cataracts, and months rolled away before the Colonel got ready
to start. The fleet of thirty-three vessels in which he did start were
nearly all prepared at Kartoum. On these he embarked 1400 men for his
voyage of 1450 miles to Gondokoro. His cavalry was dismissed as useless,
and his body guard was made up of a corps of picked men, forty-six
in all, half of whom were white and half black, that there might be
no conspiracy among them, and that the one might stimulate the other.
This guard was put into perfect drill, armed with the Snider rifle, and
named “The Forty Thieves,” on account of the propensity they at first
manifested. They afterwards became models of military discipline.

[Illustration: THE FORTY THIEVES.]

On February 8, 1870, two small steamers and thirty-one sailing vessels
started up the White Nile from Kartoum, with 850 soldiers and six months’
provisions. The rest were to follow as fast as transports could be
supplied. In five days they were at Fashoda, in the Shillook country, 118
miles from Kartoum. On February 16 they reached the mouth of the Sobat,
684 miles from Kartoum. This stream was then sending down a volume of
muddy water much larger than the White Nile itself.

They were now in the region of immense flats and boundless marshes
through which the White Nile soaks and winds for 750 miles from
Gondokoro. The river proper is almost wholly obstructed by compressed
vegetation known as “sponge,” and at points this is so thick as to defy
the passage of boats without cutting. But the slavers had discovered
another route through an arm or bayou called the Bahr Giraffe, and this
Baker determined to take. The Bahr Giraffe proved to be winding, but deep
enough at first. Like the White Nile, its waters and banks abounded in
game, the first specimen of the larger kind of which proved to be a lion,
which bounded off to cover on the approach of the boats.

By February 25, they were in a mass of floating vegetation through which
a canal had to be cut. These obstructions now became frequent and could
only be pierced by means of canals and dams. On March 5, the Colonel was
roused from a nap on the steamer’s deck by a shock, followed by a cry
“The ship’s sinking!” A hippopotamus had charged the steamer from the
bottom, and then had attacked her small boat, cutting two holes through
her iron plates with his tusks. The diah-beeah was only kept from sinking
by the aid of the steamer’s pumps.

Obstructions became thicker and canal cutting almost continuous. The men
got sick with fever. The grass swarmed with snakes and poisonous ants.
The black troops proved hardier and more patient than the Egyptians.
There were some ducks but not enough to supply meat for all. The Colonel
discovered a hippopotamus some distance off and ordered a boat to pull
for him. He disappeared on its approach, but soon reappeared about thirty
yards away. The Colonel planted a bullet in his head. The animal sank,
but was found floating near the fleet the next morning. The men speedily
cut him up and were delighted with their supply of fresh meat.

On March 21, while the men were digging out the steamers which had become
blocked by the floating masses of vegetation, they felt something
struggling beneath their feet. Scrambling away, they beheld the head of
a crocodile protruding through the sudd. The black soldiers, armed with
swords and bill-hooks, attacked him, and soon his flesh gladdened the
cooking pots of the Soudan regiment.


In thirteen days the fleet only made twelve miles through the sudd,
although a thousand men were at work all the time cutting and tugging.
The Egyptians fell sick by scores, and many died. On March 27, another
hippopotamus was killed, which gave the men a supply of fresh meat.
Several buffaloes were also killed.

After having wasted fifty-one days since leaving Kartoum, it was
discovered that the Bahr Giraffe became too shallow for further venture.
Return was therefore compulsory, much to the disgust of the officers but
to the great satisfaction of the troops. The whole season was lost, for
no other route was practicable till there should come a flush of waters.
And the return was hardly less difficult than the upward progress. The
canals they had cut were filled with vegetable masses and had to be
re-opened. But they finally reached the White Nile again and in time
to intercept a Turkish slave party who had been raiding the Shillooks.
Seventy-one slaves were found closely stowed away in their boat and
eighty-four concealed on shore, under guard. These were liberated, and
both slaves and captors informed that slavery had been abolished by the
Khedive’s order.

The party sailed down the White Nile to its junction with the Sobat and
there, on high, hard ground, prepared a permanent camp——really a little
town with houses and workshops. The acquaintance of the Shillooks was
made and cordial relations established. They brought their vegetables to
camp to sell, and proved very kind and useful. But they had been greatly
demoralized by the Arab kidnappers, as had all the tribes on both sides
of the river.

Soon after they were stationed here a sail was observed bearing down the
river. It proved to be that of the boat from which the slaves had been
liberated up near the mouth of the Bahr Giraffe. It was ordered to stop
and found to be loaded with corn. But there was an awkward smell about
the forecastle. An officer drew a ramrod from a rifle and began to poke
the corn. A cry came from beneath and a wooly head protruded. A woman
was dragged forth by the arm. Then the planking was broken and the hold
found full of slaves, packed like sardines in a barrel. Orders were given
to immediately unload the vessel. One hundred and fifty slaves, many of
them manacled, were taken out of that small, stench-ridden place. The
slaves were released and the officers and crew of the boat put in irons.
The former consisted of men and women. All were given freedom papers,
and allowed the privilege of returning home. Those who did not wish to
go might remain and they would be treated well. The women might marry
the soldiers if they chose. Strange to say they all selected soldier
husbands, and there would have been a grand wedding day after the African
fashion, if Colonel Baker had not limited the engagements to a few at a

[Illustration: RELEASE OF THE SLAVES.]

Land was cleared around the encampment, and all hands kept to work at
mechanics, farming, hunting, etc. Meanwhile Colonel Baker went to Kartoum
with his steamers and a fleet of sail boats for a supply of corn. He then
returned and prospected up the White Nile only to find it hopelessly
obstructed, unless a special expedition were sent up to cut away “the
sponge” and other vegetable obstructions. He also found out that most
of the leaders of the very brigands he was sent out to capture were in
league with the home authorities, and that they had territory assigned
them in which to operate, for which privilege they paid good round sums
annually. He was therefore in the dilemma of openly serving a government
which was secretly opposing him.


By December 1, 1870, at which time the Upper Nile would be in flood
and the season propitious, he expected to start again from his camp at
Tewfikeeyah for Gondokoro. But it was December 11 before his full fleet
of twenty-six vessels got off. Not daring to risk the White Nile, he
turned off again through the Bahr-Giraffe, which he found more open.
Nevertheless canals had to be frequently cut through the vegetable
obstructions, and nearly the same incidents as the year before were
repeated. When they arrived at the shallows, there was not water enough
and the boats had to be dragged over the bars, after discharging part of
their cargoes.

Finally the White Nile was reached again, and all were thankful. Their
last adventure in the Bafr Giraffe was with a hippopotamus which, in the
night, dashed furiously on the small boats. The zinc boat was loaded with
flesh. With one blow he demolished this. In another instant he seized
the dingy in his immense jaws, and the crash of splintered wood told of
its complete destruction. He then attacked, with a blind fury, the steam
launch, and received shot after shot. Retreating for a time, he returned
to the attack with even greater fury, when he received a ball in the
head which keeled him over. He was evidently a character of the worst
description for his body was literally covered with scars and wounds
received in fights with bulls of his own species.

By March 10, all the vessels were afloat on the White Nile, and their
further upward journey began. In a month (April 15) they were all
safely at Gondokoro, 330 miles from Bahr Giraffe junction and 1400
from Kartoum. Gondokoro was much broken up and nearly depopulated. The
Austrian Missionaries were gone and the place given over to raiders and
kidnappers. The Bari tribes, great fighters and hunters, were in the
employ of the Arab slave dealers, and Gondokoro was their headquarters.
They received Colonel Baker coldly, for though they did not want to be
slaves themselves, they had no objections to lending their aid to the
Arab brigands to take slaves from other tribes, provided they were well
paid for it.

A military station was founded at Gondokoro, on high ground, and as
the river was now too low to proceed further, Baker’s army went into
permanent quarters. Ground was planted in vegetables and corn, houses
were built, boats were repaired, and an air of business pervaded the
place. The Bari never fully reconciled themselves to Baker’s presence,
preferring no government at all. They are a pastoral people, possessing
large herds of cattle and living well. The men are tall and powerful, and
the women not unprepossessing. But they have been so badly demoralized
by the slave dealers as to be hostile to white men and to every form
of restraint. They were clearly in with the brigands to starve Baker’s
expedition out and force it to return to Kartoum.

[Illustration: A SOUDAN WARRIOR.]

Baker formally annexed all this country to Egypt, and promulgated a code
of laws for its government. This brought him into actual war with all
the Bari tribes and collisions were frequent, in which the natives were
generally worsted. There were enemies in the water too, for the Nile at
Gondokoro literally swarms with crocodiles. One of these animals tore an
arm off a sailor, and another seized and devoured a washer woman who went
into the water to do her washing. Many were killed by the men. Once the
Colonel shot a very large one, measuring twelve feet six inches long. It
was supposed to be dead and the men, having fastened a rope around its
neck, began to pull it up the bank. It suddenly came to life and opened
its huge jaws. The men ran off in fright, and could not be induced to
return till another bullet was lodged in its skull.

The “Forty Thieves” were now a most efficient part of Colonel Baker’s
forces. The Egyptians had been gradually eliminated, so that now nearly
all were blacks from the Soudan. They had ceased to steal, and were
models of bravery and soldierly drill and obedience. They became good
shots and grew to know their superiority over the native spearmen. The
entire force at Gondokoro numbered 1100 soldiers and 400 sailors. They
were constantly menaced by the Bari, and never slept except under guard.

At length the various hostile tribes formed a coalition and, inflamed
by the slave dealers, made a combined night attack. They were received
so hotly that they soon dispersed, with the loss of many men. In this
instance the fire of the “Forty Thieves” was most effective, and the
natives declared they were more afraid of them than all the rest of the
army. Watching from this time on was unceasing, and various offensive
expeditions were fitted out whose business was to subdue the tribes by
piece meal and make them acquainted with the new authorities and with the
fact that dealing in slaves could no longer be tolerated on the White
Nile nor in any country which might be annexed to Egypt.

Baker had found out to his regret that he could not establish monthly
boat service between Gondokoro and Kartoum, as he had intended, owing to
the formidable obstacles in the White Nile. Disease carried off his men
and horses. A drought blighted the gardens and fields around his camp. By
October, 1871, a conspiracy to desert and return to Kartoum cropped out,
which involved all his troops except the “Forty Thieves.” To prevent
this the vessels were run up the river on a prospecting tour. They made
the discovery that corn in plenty existed in the Bari regions beyond. But
it could not be bought. Whom these cunning natives could not drive out
they were bound to starve out. The corn had therefore to be taken. It was
a great relief to the garrison to know that they were not far from a land
of abundance.


Still Colonel Baker thought it prudent to weed out his discontented
forces and especially to get rid of the long list of women, children and
sick who were now a burden. He therefore sent thirty vessels back to
Kartoum in November. Besides a goodly supply of corn, they took along
1100 persons, leaving him with a force of about 550 soldiers and sailors.
With this small force he was left to subdue hostile tribes, suppress
the slave trade and annex the country. It seemed to him that the slave
dealers had gained their point and defeated the object of the expedition.


Yet he persisted. Small land and river expeditions were sent out in all
directions for the purpose of subjugating natives and crushing slave
parties. It was on one of these that a herd of eleven bull elephants was
seen from the deck of the vessel. Men were landed who surrounded them
and drove them into the river. They swam to the opposite side, but the
banks were high and the water deep. They were within rifle range from
the vessel, and began tearing down the banks with their tusks in order
to climb up. Fire was opened on them, which kept them in a state of
confusion. At one time several mounted the bank, but it gave way and
precipitated them all into the water. At last one got on firm ground and
exposed his flank. A ball struck him behind the shoulder which sent him
into the river. His struggles brought him within twenty yards of the
vessel. Another bullet went crashing through his brain and despatched
him. Another one was killed before the ammunition was exhausted. The
carcasses of both became the prize of the men, and strange to say, many
of the hostile natives, attracted to the spot by the firing, professed to
be very friendly in order that they might share the rich elephant steaks.
They preferred this meat to that of their own cattle, of which they had

By November, Colonel Baker called in all his expeditions. He had
established peace throughout a wide section, and set free the slaves
captured by several large parties. The war with the Baris was virtually
over. But the slave dealers had only changed their base of operations.
They had gone further south and would there stir up the same trouble they
had incited among the Bari.

When all had re-assembled at Gondokoro, preparations were set on foot for
a movement further south, the general course to be the line of the White
Nile. While these were going on, those who had leisure devoted themselves
to hunting, and studying the animal, mineral and vegetable resources.
It was a country of great natural wealth. Iron and salt abounded.
Tobacco, beans, corn, hemp and cotton could easily be raised. Nearly
every tropical fruit was found in abundance. There was good fishing in
the rivers, and plenty of ducks and other small game in the lakes and
ponds. Every now and then the hunters had an adventure with hippopotami,
whose attacks were always dangerous. Elephants were very plenty in all
the region about Gondokoro. They saw them singly and in herds, and had
fine opportunity to study their habits. They are fond of the fruit of the
“Keglik” tree, which resembles a date. If the tree be small they quickly
tear it up by the roots and eat the fruit at leisure. If it be large——and
they frequently grow to a diameter of three feet——the animal butts his
forehead against the tree till it quivers in every branch and showers
its fruit down upon the delighted animal.

[Illustration: SHAKING FRUIT.]

On January 23, 1872, the expedition was off, a garrison having been
left at Gondokoro. Its final destination was the Unyoro country, just
north of Victoria Nyanza and east of Albert Nyanza. We will hear of
all these names again and become familiar with them. The expedition
started under excellent auspices, except as to numbers. The “Forty
Thieves” were staunch and brave, and all the Sudani soldiers were in
good spirits. The Colonel’s light steamer led the way, followed by the
heavier vessels. This gave him fine opportunity to prospect the country
and enjoy occasional hunts. The mountains of Regiaf abut on the White
Nile, about fifty or sixty miles above Gondokoro. In their midst is a
fine cataract and much beautiful scenery. The geological formation is
very peculiar. One curiosity was noted in the shape of an immense Syenite
slab, forty-five feet long and as many wide, resting like a table on a
hard clay pedestal. This stone is reverenced by the Baris, and they think
that any person who sleeps under it will surely die.

[Illustration: TABLE ROCK AT REGIAF.]

The vessels could not go beyond the Regiaf cataract, and a journey
overland to the Laboré country was projected. But all attempts to employ
native carriers failed. The soldiers of Baker’s own force refused to
draw the loaded carts. There was nothing left but to organize a small,
light-armed and light-loaded force, and try the land journey in this way.
This force started in February. The guide was old Lokko, a rainmaker of
Laboré. Mrs. Baker went along, accompanied by a train of female carriers.
They drove a herd of 1000 cows and 500 sheep. The country was thickly
populated and teeming with plenty. The Laboré country was reached, after
a sixty mile tramp, and they were in the midst of friends——the hated
and hostile Baris having been left behind. Carriers could now be had in
abundance and the journeys were rapid to the Asua, the largest tributary
of the White Nile.

[Illustration: NATIVE DANCE.]

Here was a grand country. There were high mountains and fertile valleys,
fine forests and plenty of game. The march now lay toward Fatiko, the
capital of the Shooli. It lies at the base of the Shooa mountains,
amid the most picturesque scenery, 85 miles from Laboré and 185 from
Gondokoro. A grand entry into the town was made. The “Forty Thieves”
and the rest of the troops were put into complete marching order. The
band was ordered to play. There was a kind of dress parade and sham
fight, mingled with drum and bugle sounds and the blare of the band. The
manœuvres pleased the natives very much. They are fond of music, and as
the troops reached a camping spot, the women of the village clustered
around, assumed dancing attitudes, and in nature’s costume indulged in
one of their characteristic fandanges, the old women proving even more
inveterate dancers than the young.

Baker established a military station at Fatiko, leaving a detachment
of 100 out of his 212 men. On March 18, 1872, he started for Unyoro.
Though the intermediate country is rich in vegetation, it is uninhabited
except by tropical animals, and is a common hunting ground for the tribes
on either side. The Unyoros live east and north of Victoria Nyanza
Lake. They are a numerous people, but not so stalwart as the Laborés
or Schooli. Their soil is rich, and tobacco grows to an immense size.
Their town of Masindi, twenty miles east of lake Albert Nyanza, whose
waters can be seen from the summits of the mountains, was reached by
the expedition on April 25. The country was placed under the protection
of the Khedive, and the chief Kabba-Rega, son of Kamrasi, was made
acquainted with the fact that hereafter slavery was prohibited.
This tribe had been at times heavily raided by slave hunters, and
their pens in different parts of the country were even then full of
captives——probably 1000 in all. The natives themselves, as is usual with
African tribes, only saw harm in this when the captives were of their own
tribe. “Steal from everybody but from _me_,” seems to be their idea of
the eighth commandment.

The expedition remained for some time in Masindi and attempted to
establish a permanent military station. But the slave hunters seemed to
have more power over the natives than Baker with his drilled forces and
show of Egyptian authority. The chief and his subjects grew suspicious
and finally hostile. They attacked Baker, and the result of the fight
was their defeat and the destruction of their town by fire. Such an
atmosphere was not congenial to peace and regular authority. Therefore a
retreat was ordered toward Rionga on the Victoria Nile. But how to make
it? Every surrounding was hostile. Porters could be had with difficulty.
Worst of all, provisions were exhausted. At this critical moment Mrs.
Baker came to the rescue with a woman’s wit and prudence. She had been
laying up a reserve of flour when it was plenty, and now she brought
forth what was deemed a supply for several days.

[Illustration: ATTACK BY AMBUSCADE.]

On June 14, 1872, the station at Masindi was destroyed, and the
expedition started on its backward journey amid hostile demonstrations by
the natives. The journey was almost like a running battle. Day attacks
were frequent, and scarcely a night passed without an attempt at a
surprise. The “Forty Thieves” became the main-stay of the expedition.
They were ever on the alert, and proved very formidable with their trusty
Snider rifles. They grew to know where ambuscades were to be expected,
and were quick to dispose themselves so as to make defence complete or
first attack formidable. They never fired without an object, and only
when they had dead aim. And they knew the value of cover against the
lances of the enemy. Their losses were therefore small, while they played
havoc with the enemy, seldom failing to rout them, or to conduct an
honorable retreat.

At length they struck the Victoria Nile at Foweera, fifteen miles below
Rionga Islands. Here they built a stockade, and began to build canoes
with which to cross the river which was 500 yards wide. Word was sent up
to Rionga. The chief came and proved friendly. He informed the Colonel of
the plot between Kabba Rega and the Arab slave hunters to drive him out
of the country, and declared that he would be faithful to the Khedive’s
authority. Whereupon Baker declared him chief instead of Kabba, and
endowed him with full authority over the natives, in the name of the
Khedive. Unyoro thus had a new king. He was left with a complement of
Baker’s small army as a guard and nucleus, and the Colonel started down
the river in canoes for his post at Fatiko. His small garrison, left
there, received him gladly, but scarcely was the reception over when an
attack was made upon it by the slave hunters. They were well prepared and
determined. From behind huts and other places of safety they began to
pick off the soldiers, and a charge of the “Forty Thieves” was ordered.
It was brilliantly executed, and resulted in the dislodgment of the enemy
and their pursuit for many miles with great slaughter and the capture of
many prisoners, among whom were some 135 of their slaves.

This battle resulted in the driving out of Abou Saood, the leader of the
slave hunters, and the man who had rented the whole country from the
authorities at Kartoum for the purpose of brigandage. He went to Cairo
to complain of the treatment he had received at the hands of Baker and
his party, and actually circulated the report that he and Mrs. Baker had
been killed on the head-waters of the Nile.


A strong fortification was built at Fatiko, which was finished by
December, and reinforcements were sent for from Gondokoro. It was the
hunting season, and many expeditions were organized for the capture
of game, in which the natives joined with a hearty good will. Besides
the rifle in skilled hands, the net of the natives for the capture of
antelope and smaller game was much relied on, and once all enjoyed the
magnificent sight of a tropical prairie on fire, with its leaping game of
royal proportions, to be brought down almost at will, provided the hunter
was not demoralized with its number and size.


While at Fatiko, an embassy came from King Mtesa of the Uganda
professing friendship and offering an army of 6000 men for,——he did not
know what, but to punish any natives who might appear to be antagonistic,
especially Kabba Rega.

By March, 1873, reinforcements from Gondokoro arrived in pitiable plight.
Baker’s forces were now 620 strong. He re-inforced his various military
stations. Then he liberated the numerous slaves the upward troops had
taken from the slave hunters. Most of these were women and back in their
native country. They accepted liberty with demonstrations of joy, rushed
to the officers and men on whom they lavished hugs and kisses, and danced
away in a delirium of excitement.

Colonel Baker’s time would expire in April. Therefore he timed his return
to Gondokoro so as to be there by the first of the month, 1873. The whole
situation was changed. There was scarcely a vestige of the neat station
he had left. The slave dealers had carried things with a high hand, and
had demoralized the troops. Filth and disorder had taken the place of
cleanliness and discipline. Things were put to rights by May, and on the
25 of that month Baker started down the Nile, leaving his “Forty Thieves”
as part of the Gondokoro garrison.

On June 29, Colonel Baker, Mrs. Baker and the officers of this celebrated
expedition arrived at Kartoum, and reached Cairo on August 24, whence
they sailed for England.

He concludes his history thus:——“The first steps in establishing
the authority of a new government among tribes hitherto savage and
intractable were of necessity accompanied by military operations. War
is inseparable from annexation, and the law of force, resorted to in
self-defence, was absolutely indispensable to prove the superiority of
the power that was eventually to govern. The end justified the means.

“At the commencement of the expedition I had felt that the object of the
enterprise——‘the suppression of the slave trade’——was one for which I
could confidently ask a blessing.

“A firm belief in Providential support has not been unrewarded. In the
midst of sickness and malaria we had strength; from acts of treachery we
were preserved unharmed; in personal encounters we remained unscathed. In
the end, every opposition was overcome: hatred and subordination yielded
to discipline and order. A paternal government extended its protection
through lands hitherto a field for anarchy and slavery. The territory
within my rule was purged from the slave trade. The natives of the great
Shooli tribe, relieved from their oppressors, clung to the protecting
government. The White Nile, for a distance of 1,600 miles from Kartoum to
Central Africa, was cleansed from the abomination of a traffic which had
hitherto sullied its waters.

[Illustration: GORDON AS MANDARIN.]

“Every cloud had passed away, and the term of my office expired in peace
and sunshine. In this result, I humbly traced God’s blessing.”

Baker’s picture is much overdrawn. The situation in the Soudan has never
been promising. In 1874, Colonel James Gordon was made Governor General
of all these equatorial provinces which Baker had annexed to Egypt.
Gordon was a brave enthusiast, who had acquired the title of “Chinese”
Gordon, because he had organized an army at Shanghai, and, as Brigadier,
helped the Chinese Government to put down a dangerous rebellion. He
had received the order of Mandarin, had infinite faith in himself, and
a wonderful faculty for controlling the unruly elements in oriental
countries. He did some wonderful work in the Soudan in suppressing the
slave-trade, disarming the Bashi-Bazouks, reconciling the natives, and
preventing the Government at Cairo from parcelling out these equatorial
districts to Arab slave dealers. He worked hard, organized quite an army,
and had a power in the Soudan which was imperial, and which he turned to
good uses. But in 1879, he differed with the Khedive and resigned. Then
England and France deposed the Khedive, Ismial, and set up Tewfik, under
pretext of financial reform. But these two countries could not agree as
to a financial policy. France withdrew, and left England to work out the
Egyptian problem. The problem is all in a nutshell. English ascendancy
in Egypt is deemed necessary to protect the Suez Canal and her water
way to India. For this she bombarded and reduced Alexandria in 1882 and
established a suzerainty over Egypt——Turkey giving forced assent, and
France refusing to join in the mix.

The new Khedive was helpless——purposely so. England planted within Egypt
an army of occupation and took virtual directorship of her institutions.
But the provinces all around, especially those newly annexed by
Baker, revolted. Their Moslem occupants would not acknowledge English
interference and sovereignty. Soudan was in rebellion both east and west
of the Nile. England sent several small armies toward the interior and
fought many doubtful battles. At length the project of reducing the
Soudan was given over. But how to get the garrisons out of the leading
strongholds in safety became a great problem. That at Kartoum was the
largest, numbering several hundred, with a large contingent of women and
children. It would be death for any of these garrisons to leave their
fortifications and try boats down the Nile, or escape by camel back
across the desert. Yet England was committed to the duty of relieving

[Illustration: PORTRAIT OF GORDON.]

The rebellion was under the lead of the Mahdi, a Moslem prophet, who
claimed to be raised up to save his people and religion. His followers
were numerous and desperate. Gordon thought the old influence he had
acquired over these people when Governor General of the Soudan, would
avail him for the purpose of getting the forlorn garrisons away in
safety. He was therefore re-appointed Governor General in 1884, and
started with Colonel Stewart for Kartoum. There they were besieged for
ten months by the Mahdi’s troops, and there Gordon was killed (January
27, 1885) by the enemy, and all his garrison surrendered or were killed.
The English sent an army of 8,000 men up the Nile to rescue Gordon, and
part of it got nearly to Kartoum, when word of the sad fate that had
befallen the garrison reached it. The expedition retreated, and since
then the Soudan and Upper Nile have been given over to the old Arab and
slave stealing element.

                          SOURCES OF THE NILE.

By reversing the map of North America——turning it upside down——you get
a good river map of Africa. The Mississippi, rising in a lake system
and flowing into the gulf of Mexico, becomes the Nile flowing into the
Mediterranean——both long water-ways. The St. Lawrence, rising in and
draining the most magnificent lake system in the world, from Huron to
Ontario, will represent the Congo, rising in and draining a lake system
which may prove to be of equal extent and beauty. Both are heavy,
voluminous streams, full of rapids and majestic falls. The Columbia River
will represent the Zambesi, flowing into the Indian Ocean.

Civilized man has, perhaps, known the African Continent the longest,
yet he knows it least. Its centre has been a mystery to him since the
earliest ages. If the Egyptian geographer traced the first chart, and the
astronomer there first noted the motion of sun, moon and stars; if on the
Nile the first mariner tried his bark on water; it was but yesterday that
the distant and hidden sources of the great stream were revealed, and it
is around these sources that the geographer and naturalist have now the
largest field for discovery, and in their midst that the traveller and
hunter have the finest fields for romance and adventure.

The Mississippi has in three centuries become as familiar as the Rhine.
The Nile, known always, has ever nestled its head in Africa’s unknown
Lake Region, safe because of mangrove swamp and arid waste. But now
that the secret of its sources is out, and with it the fact of a high
and delightful inner Africa, full of running streams and far stretching
lakes, of rich tropical verdure and abundant animal life, is the dream a
foolish one that here are the possibilities of an empire whose commerce,
agriculture, wealth and enlightenment shall make it as powerful and
bright as its past has been impotent and dark?

We have known Africa under the delusion that it was a desert, with a
fringe of vegetation on the sea coast and in the valley of the Nile.
“Africs burning sands” and her benighted races are the beginning and end
of our school thoughts of the “Dark Continent.” True, her Sahara is the
most unmitigated desert in the world, running from the Atlantic Ocean
clear to the Tigris in Asia——for the Red Sea is only a gulf in its midst.
True, there is another desert in the far South, almost as blank. These,
with their drifting sands, long caravans, ghastly skeletons, fierce
Bedouin wanderers, friendly oases, have furnished descriptions well
calculated to interest and thrill. But they are by no means the Africa of
the future. They are as the shell of an egg, whose life and wonder are in
the centre.

There are many old stories of African exploration. One is to the effect
that a Phœnician vessel, sent out by Pharaoh Necho, left the Red
Sea and in three years appeared at the Straits of Gibraltar, having
circumnavigated the Continent. But it required the inducement of
commercial gain to fix its boundaries exactly, to give it place on the
map of the world. Not until a pathway to the east became a commercial
necessity, and a short “North West Passage” a brilliant hope, did the
era of Arctic adventure begin. The same necessity, and the same hope for
a “South East Passage,” led the Portuguese to try all the western coast
of Africa for a short cut to the Orient. For seventy years they coasted
in vain, till in 1482 Diaz rounded the “Cape of Storms,” afterwards
called Cape of Good Hope. Twelve years later Vasco de Gama ran the first
European vessel into the ports of India.

The first permanent stream found by the Portuguese on going down the
Atlantic, or west, coast of Africa was the Senegal River. They thought
it a western outlet of the Nile. Here Europe first saw that luxuriant,
inter-tropical Africa which differed so much from the Africa of
traditions and school books. They knew that something else than a sandy
waste was necessary to support a river like the Senegal. They had been
used to seeing and reading of the tawny Bedouin wanderers, but south
of this river they found a black, stout, well made people, who in
contradistinction to the thin, tawny, short Moors of the desert, became
Black Moors——“black-a-moors.” And in contrast with the dry, sandy,
treeless plains of Sahara they actually found a country verdant, woody,
fertile and rolling.

Unhappily the wrongs of the negro began with his first contact with
Europeans. The Portuguese took him home as a specimen. He then became a
slave. The moral sense of Europe was still medieval. Her maritime nations
fastened like leeches on the west coast of Africa and sucked her life
blood. Millions of her children were carried off to Brazil, the West
Indies, the Spanish Main, and the British colonies in North America and
elsewhere. Much as we abhor the slave system of Africa as carried on at
present by Turkish dealers, it is no more inhuman than that practiced for
three hundred years by the Christian nations of Europe.

This slave trade was fatal to discovery and research in Africa, such as
was warranted by the knowledge which the Portuguese brought, and which
is now warranted, and being realized too, by the recent revelations of
Stanley, Livingstone and others. The slaver could not, because he dared
not, venture far from his rendezvous on the river or in the lagoon where
his victims were collected. He kept his haunts a secret, and closed
the doors on all who would be likely to interfere with his gains. Not
until slavery received its death blow among civilized nations did they
begin to set permanent feet, in a spirit of scientific and christian
inquiry, on the interior soil of Africa, and to map out its blank spaces
with magnificent lakes and rivers. Then began to come those stirring
narratives of travel by Mungo Park, Landers and Clapperton, who tracked
the course of the Niger River. Then began that northern march of sturdy
and permanent Dutch and English colonists who are carrying their
cultivation and civilization from the Southern Cape to the Kalihari
Desert, the southern equivalent of the Sahara. Then also a Liberian Free
State became possible, founded and ruled by the children of those who had
been ruthlessly stolen from their happy equatorial homes and sold into
bondage in the United States.

Between the two sterile tracts of Africa lies the real Continent. All
the coast lands are a shell. Egypt is but a strip on either side the
Nile. Central Africa——the Lake regions which feed the Nile, Congo and
Zambesi——is a great and grand section, where nature has been prodigal
in all her gifts, and which invites a civilization as unique and strong
as its physical features. We may wonder at the strange things revealed
by Arctic research, but here are unrivalled chains of lake and river
communication, and powerful states with strange peoples and customs, of
which the last generation never dreamed. No spot of all the earth invites
to such adventure as this, and none profiteth so much in the revelations
which add to science and which may be turned to account in commerce and
the progress of civilization.

We have read the roll of names rendered immortal by efforts to reach the
two Poles of the earth. Africa’s list of explorers contains the names of
Livingstone, Gordon, Cameron, Speke, Grant, Burton, Baker, Schweinfurth,
Stanley, Kirk, Van der Decken, Elton, Pinto, Johnston, and others, some
of whom have laid down their lives in the cause of science, and every one
recalling memories of gigantic difficulties grappled with, of dangers
boldly encountered, of sufferings bravely borne, of great achievements
performed, and all within the space of twenty years.

Before entering these Lake Regions of Africa to see what they contain,
it is due to the past to recall the fact that an old chart of the
African Continent was published at Rome in 1591, which contains a
system of equatorial lakes and rivers. It shows the Blue Nile coming
out of Abyssinia, and the White Nile taking its rise in two great lakes
under the equator——the Victoria Nyanza of Speke, and the Albert Nyanza
of Baker. Due south from Albert Nyanza is another lake which is the
equivalent of Tanganyika, and this is not only connected with the Congo
but with the Nile and Zambesi. Cameron and Stanley have both shown that
Tanganyika sends its surplus waters, if any it has, to the Congo, and
Livingstone has proven that the head waters of these two mighty rivers
are intimately connected. Is this ancient map a happy guess, or does it
present facts which afterwards fell into oblivion? Ere the slave trade
put its ban between the coast traders and the dwellers of the interior,
ere Portuguese influence ceased in Abyssinia, and the missions of the
Congo left off communications with Rome, did these unknown regions yield
their secrets to the then existing civilization? May not this geographic
scrap, dug from among the rubbish of the Vatican library, be the sole
relic now extant of a race of medieval explorers the fame of whose
adventures has fallen dumb, and whose labors have to be gone over again?

The map of Africa, used in our school days, had a blank centre. No
geographer had soiled its white expanse with lines and figures. It was
the “happy hunting ground” of conjecture and fancy. The Zambesi and Congo
were short stumps of rivers, with perhaps a dotted line to tell what was
not known. When two traders——the Pombeiros——passed from Angola on the
west to the Pacific, in the beginning of the present century, and wrote
how they had crossed a hundred rivers, visited the courts of powerful
negro kings, traversed countries where the people had made considerable
progress in the industries and arts, their story, like that of other
pioneers, was discredited and their information treated with contemptuous

But about thirty years ago the modern world was startled and gratified
with its first glimpse at the Lake Regions of Africa. In 1849,
Livingstone, Oswell and Murray, after weary marching across the Kalihari,
or southern, desert, stood on the margin of Lake Ngami, the most
southerly and first discovered of the great chain of equatorial lakes.
They expected to find only a continuation of desert sands and desert
hardships, but, lo! a mighty expanse of waters breaks on their vision,
worth more as a discovery than a dozen nameless tribes or rivers. What
could it mean? Was this the key to that mysterious outpour of rivers
which, flowing north, east, and west, blended their waters with the
Mediterranean, the Pacific and Atlantic? The discoverer could go no
further then, but fancy was excited with the prospect of vague and
limitless possibilities and speculation became active in every scientific
centre. Back again into the wilderness the discoverer is drawn, and a
score of others plunge into the unknown to share his fame.

From the discovery of Ngami, a broad sheet into which the Cubango, south
of the Zambesi and parallel with it, expands ere it plunges into the
great central Salt Pan (a Great Salt Lake), may be dated the revival of
modern curiosity in the secrets of the African Continent.

In the Portuguese colonies of Abyssinia, there were rumors that a great
lake existed north of the Zambesi, called Maravi or Nyassa. Its outflow
was unknown, and the theory was that it was one of a long chain which
fed the Nile. They thought no other stream was worthy of such a source,
but they did not ask, whence then the mightier volumes that pour through
the Congo and Zambesi? Others said the Nile finds ample sources in the
“Mountains of the Moon.” Nobody had seen these, but old Ptolemy, the
geographer, had said so two thousand years ago, and hundreds of years
before, Herodotus had written, in obedience to the dictates of two
Egyptian priests, that “two conical hills, Crophi and Mophi, divided the
unfathomable waters of the Nile from those which ran into Ethiopia.”

This is all the information we had of the sources of the Nile down to
1863——at least of the White, or Eastern, branch of the Nile. Then it was
that Speke and Grant, coming from the south, and Baker following the
valley of the river toward the equator, almost met on the spot which
contains its true sources. Poor Livingstone could not be made to see the
merit of their discovery. He clung to the story of Herodotus, amplified
by that of Ptolemy, which fixed the head of the great river in two lakes
some ten degrees south of the Equator. Livingstone believed that the high
water-shed between the Zambesi and Congo would pass for the Mountains
of the Moon, and that in the Lualaba, flowing northward (the Lualaba
afterwards turned out to be the Congo, as Stanley showed) he had the
track of the true Nile. Following this will-o-the-wisp into the swamps of
Lake Bangweolo, he met a lonely and lingering death.

To look on the sources of the Nile was ever a wish and dream. The
conquerors of Egypt, at whatever time and of whatever nation, longed
to unravel the problem of its fountains. In the days when a settled
population extended far into Nubia and a powerful state flourished at
Meroë, near the junction of the White and Blue Nile, the tramp of armed
hosts in search of the “mythical fountains,” favorite haunt of Jove
himself when he wished seclusion, often resounded in the deep African
interior. Sesostris, the first king who patronized map making, made
attempts to discover these springs. Alexander the Great, Cambyses the
Persian, and the Roman Cæsars, were inspired with the same wish. Julius
Cæsar said he would give up civil war could he but look on the sources of
the Nile. Nero sent out a vast exploring party who told of cataracts and
marshes which compelled their return. These expeditions were formidable.
They returned empty handed as to science, but generally loaded with
spoils of conquest. The idea of a solitary explorer, with his life in his
hand and good will toward all in his heart, encountering all the perils
and privations of African travel for pure love of knowledge, is wholly a
modern conception.

Let mention be made here of Ismail Pasha, ex-viceroy of Egypt. To the
practices of an oriental despot he added the spirit of a man of modern
science. To him, more than to any other man, do we owe a complete
solution of the mystery of the Nile. He plunged Egypt into inextricable
debt, he ground his people with taxes, but he introduced to them the
light of western knowledge, he granted the concessions which built
the Suez Canal, he sought out and annexed the sources of the Nile.
For twenty years European pioneers and explorers, in his pay or under
his protection, worked their way southward, mapping lakes and rivers,
founding settlements, capturing slave gangs, until the entire Nile Valley
either acknowledges Egypt or is open to commerce and civilization, unless
forsooth the recent Soudanese protest, made by the fanatical El Mahdi and
his followers, should prove to be more persistent and better sustained
than now seems probable.

Our trip up the Nile to Assouan, or the first cataract, past the silent
shapes of the temples, sphinxes and pyramids, surrounded by sights and
sounds of Oriental life, was as pastime. But now the holiday journey
ends, and we are face to face with the realities and hardships of a
Nubian desert. The Nile is no longer verdant on either side. The sands,
dry and barren, form its shores. But that is not all. You skirt it to
Korosko amid difficulties, and there you are at its great bend. If you
followed it now to the next place of importance, Abu-Hammed, you would
have to travel nearly 600 miles. The waters are broken by falls and the
country is desolate. No one thinks of the journey, unless compelled to
make it. The course is that of the caravans across the Korosko desert to
Abu-Hammed. It is 400 miles of dreary waste, and calculated to burn out
of the traveller any romance he may have entertained of Nubian adventure.
Day marching over this desert is impossible at certain seasons. Night
is given up to the uneasy motion of camel riding and the monotony of a
desert tramp.

Do not think the ground is even. Here and there it is broken by wady’s or
gulches, and as you descend into these the eye may be relieved with sight
of vegetation. Perhaps a gazelle dashes away in fright to the nearest
sand hills, or it may be you catch a glimpse of a naked Arab youth
tending his flock of goats, for even desert wastes are not utterly void
of plant and animal life.

These deserts are not even rainless, though as much as four years have
been known to pass without a shower. A rain storm is watched with
breathless hope by the nomad Arab tribes. They see the clouds drifting
up from the distant Indian Ocean and pitching their black tents on
the summits of the mountains that divide the Nile Valley from the Red
Sea. A north wind may blow during the night and sweep them back whence
they came. But more likely they burst into thunderstorm, as if all the
storms of a season were compressed into one. The dry wadys of yesterday
are roaring torrents by morning, bearing to the Nile their tribute of
a single day, and for a day or a week, the desert air is pure and the
desert sand shoots a tender vegetation, only to be withered, like Jonah’s
gourd, in fewer hours than it sprang.

The Arab camel driver, however, knows well a few spots where are
running water and green turf the year round. These are the oases, or
stepping stones, by means of which the burning wilderness may be crossed.
Sometimes the wells fail, or have been poisoned or filled, or are in the
possession of a hostile predatory band. Then the unfortunate traveller
has to face death by thirst or exhaustion as he hurries on to the next
halting place. At any rate he is profoundly thankful when the welcome
waters of the Nile come into view again at Abu-Hammed, and he knows he is
within safe navigable distance of Kartoum, at the junction of the White
and Blue Nile.

And now, in passing from Abu-Hammed to Kartoum, we have a grand secret of
the Nile. For twelve hundred miles above its mouth that mysterious river
receives no tributary on the right hand nor on the left. It may be traced
like a ribbon of silver with a narrow fringe of green, winding in great
folds through a hot and thirsty desert and under the full blaze of a sun
that drinks its waters but returns nothing in the shape of rain. And
man also exacts a heavy tribute for purposes of irrigation. Whence its
supply? Look for a partial answer to the Atbara, whose mouth is in the
east bank of the Nile, half way from Abu-Hammed to Kartoum. Here light
begins to break on the exhaustless stores of the Nile. During the greater
part of the year the Atbara is dry. Not a hopeful source of supply, you
say at once. The sources of the Atbara are away off to the east in the
mountains of Abyssinia, whose great buttresses are now visible from the
Nile Valley, and whose projections push to the Red Sea and Indian Ocean.
There also are a Lake Region and Nile sources, whose discovery by Bruce a
century ago gave the scientific world quite a stir. His account of this
Abyssinian country, so unique in physical features, social life, history,
religion and ancient remains, read so much like romance that it was not
believed. But Beke, De Cosson, James Bruce and the great Livingstone,
have since verified all and given him his proper place among accurate
observers and intrepid travellers.

But it was Sir Samuel Baker, on his first journey up the Nile in 1861,
who pointed out the importance of the Abyssinian rivers as Nile
tributaries. He turned aside from his southward route and followed
the dry bed of the Atbara for a double purpose. First, to watch the
great annual flooding of this Nile feeder. Second, to enjoy the sport
of capturing some of the big game, such as the elephant, rhinoceros,
hippopotamus, giraffe and lion, known to abound in the thick jungles
covering the lower slopes of the adjacent hills.

[Illustration: PORTRAIT OF BAKER.]

The Atbara, or “Black Nile,” was simply a vast wady or furrow, thirty
feet deep and 400 yards to half a mile across, plowed through the heart
of the desert, its edges marked by a thin growth of leafless mimosas and
dome palms. The only trace of water was here and there a rush-fringed
pool which the impetuous torrent had hollowed out in the sudden bends
in the river’s course, and where disported themselves hippopotami,
crocodiles, and immense turtles, that had long ago adjusted their
relations on a friendly footing on the discovery that none of them
could do harm to the others. On the 23 of June, the simoom was blowing
with overpowering force; the heat was furnace-like, and the tents of
travellers were covered with several inches of drifted sand. Above, in
the Abyssinian mountains, however, the lightnings were playing and the
rains were falling as if the windows of heaven had been opened. The
monsoon had set in; the rising streams were choking their narrow channels
in their frantic rush to the lowlands, and were tearing away huge masses
of the rich dark soil, to be spread a month hence over the flat plains of
Egypt. The party encamped on the Atbara heard through the night a sound
as if of distant thunder; but it was “the roar of the approaching water.”

Wonder of the desert! Yesterday there was a barren sheet of glaring sand
with a fringe of withered bush and tree. All nature was most poor. No
bush could boast a leaf. No tree could throw a shade. In one night there
was a mysterious change——wonders of the mighty Nile! An army of waters
was hastening to the wasted river. There was no drop of rain, no thunder
cloud on the horizon to give hope. All had been dry and sultry. Dust and
desolation yesterday; to-day a magnificent stream five hundred yards wide
and twenty feet deep, dashing through a dreary desert. Bamboos, reeds,
floating matter of all kinds, hurry along the turbid waters. Where are
all the crowded inhabitants of the pools? Their prison-doors are open,
the prisoners are released, and all are rejoicing in the deep sounding
and rapid waters of the Atbara.

Here is the clue to one part of the Nile mystery——its great annual
inundations, source of fertilizing soil and slime. The Blue Nile, further
on, and with its sources in the same Abyssinian fastnesses, contributes
like the Atbara, though in a secondary degree, to the annual Nile flood
and to Egypt’s fertility, with this difference, that it flows all the
year round.

At Kartoum, as already seen, we reach the junction of the White and Blue
Nile, the frontier of two strongly contrasted physical regions, and the
dividing line between the nomadic barbarism of the north and the settled
barbarism of the south. The secret that has still to be unveiled is the
source of that unfailing flow of water which perpetually resists the
influences of absorption, evaporation and irrigation, and carries a life
giving stream through the heart of Egypt at all seasons of the year.

Kartoum has ingrafted all the vices of its northern society on the
squalor and misery of its southern. A more miserable, filthy and
unhealthy spot can hardly be imagined. Yet it is not uninteresting, for
here, up to a recent period, was the “threshold of the unknown.” It has
been the starting point of numberless Nile expeditions since the days of
the Pharaohs. Mehemet Ali, first viceroy of Egypt, pushed his conquest
of the Soudan, a little south of it in 1839. He found the climate so
unhealthy that he established a penal colony a little way up the White
Nile, banishment to which was considered equivalent to death.

Says Sir Samuel Baker of Kartoum, on his second visit in 1869: “During
my first visit in 1861, the population was 30,000. It is now reduced
one-half, and nearly all the European residents have disappeared. And
the change in the country between Berber and Kartoum is frightful.
The river’s banks, formerly verdant with heavy crops, have become a
wilderness. Villages, once crowded, have entirely disappeared. Irrigation
has ceased. The nights, formerly discordant with the croaking of
waterwheels, are now silent as death. Industry has vanished. Oppression
has driven the inhabitants from the soil. It is all due to the Governor
General of Soudan who, like a true Mohammedan, left his government to
Providence while he increased the taxes. The population of the richest
province of Soudan has fled oppression and abandoned the country. The
greater portion have taken to the slave trade of the White Nile where, in
their turn, they might trample on the rights of others, where, as they
had been plundered, they might plunder.”


The wilderness of fever-stricken marshes that line the White Nile long
baffled the attempts of the most determined explorers to penetrate to
the southward. At length “dry land” was reached again at Gondokoro, only
five degrees from the equator. It in turn became an advanced position
of Egyptian authority, a centre of mission enterprise, a half-way house
where the traveller rested and equipped himself for new discoveries.
From the base of Gondokoro, Petherick pursued his researches into the
condition of the negro races of the Upper Nile; the Italian traveller,
Miani, penetrated far towards the southwest, into the countries occupied
by the Nyam-Nyam tribes, that singular region of dwarfs and cannibals;
and Dr. Schweinfurth, Colonel Long, and Mdlle. Tinné followed up the
search with magnificent results. Mdlle. Tinné, a brave Dutch lady,
deserves special notice as having been perhaps the first European woman
who encountered the terrible hardships and perils of the explorer’s
life in the cause of African discovery. She is far, however from being
the last. The wives of two of the greatest pioneers in the work——Mrs.
Livingstone and Lady Baker——accompanied with a noble-minded resolution
the steps of their husbands, the one along the banks of the Zambesi, and
the other on the White Nile. Mdlle. Tinné and Mrs. Livingstone paid with
their lives for their devotion, and are buried by the streams from whose
waters they helped to raise the veil. Lady Baker has been more fortunate.
Only a girl of seventeen when she rode by her husband’s side from
Gondokoro, she lived to return to Europe where her name is inseparably
linked with two great events of African history——the discovery of one of
the great lakes of the Nile and the suppression of the slave traffic.

[Illustration: MRS. BAKER.]

As already intimated, the Egyptian conquest and annexation of the Soudan
country, and the bad government of it which followed, made the region
of the White Nile the great man-hunting ground of Africa. The traffic
was general when the modern travellers began their struggle to reach the
equatorial lakes. Arab traders were the chief actors in these enterprises
and they were joined by a motley crew of other races, not excepting most
of the white and Christian races. If they were not directly under the
patronage of the Egyptian authorities at Kartoum, they made it worth
while for those authorities to keep a patronizing silence, by throwing
annually into their treasury something handsome in the shape of cash.

Kartoum marks pretty distinctly the limit of the Arab races and the
influence of the Mohammedan religion. Beyond, and toward the equator
and Nile sources, are the negro and pagan. Fanaticism and race hatred,
therefore, helped to inflame the evil passions which the slave trade
invariably arouses. The business of the miscreants engaged in this
detestable work was simply kidnapping and murder. The trade of the
White Nile was purely slave-hunting. The trifling traffic in ivory and
gums was a mere deception and sham, intended to cover the operations
of the slaver. A marauding expedition would be openly fitted out at
Kartoum, composed of some of the most atrocious ruffians in Africa
and south-western Asia, with the scum of a few European cities. Their
favorite mode of going to work was to take advantage of one of those wars
which are constantly being waged between the tribes of Central Africa.
If a war were not going on in the quarter which the slave-hunters had
marked out for their raid, a quarrel was purposely fomented——at no time a
difficult task in Africa. At dead of night the marauders with their black
allies would steal down upon the doomed village. At a signal the huts
are fired over the heads of the sleeping inmates, a volley of musketry
is poured in, and the gang of desperadoes spring upon their victims. A
scene of wild confusion and massacre follows, until all resistance has
been relentlessly put down, and then the slave-catcher counts over and
secures his human spoils. This is the first act of the bloody drama.
Most probably, if the kidnappers think they have not made a large enough
“haul,” they pick a quarrel with their allies, who are in their turn
shot down, or overpowered and, manacled to their late enemies, are soon
floating down the Nile in a slave dhow, on their way to the markets of
Egypt or Turkey. The waste of human life, the stoppage of industry and
honest trade, the demoralization of the whole region within reach of the
raiders, the detestable cruelties and crimes practised on the helpless
captives on the journey down the river, on the caravan route across the
desert, or in the stifling dens where they are lodged at the slave depots
and markets, represent an enormous total of human misery.


Many will remember the efforts of Colonel Gordon, whom the Khedive made a
Pasha, and also a Governor General of the Soudan, at the capital Kartoum,
to suppress this nefarious traffic. And it will also be remembered how
in the late revolt against Egyptian authority, led by El Mahdi, Colonel
Gordon again headed a forlorn hope to Kartoum, with the hope that he
could stay the rising fanatical tide, or at least control it, so as to
prevent a fresh recognition of slave stealers. He fell a victim to his
philanthropic views, and was murdered in the streets of the city he went
to redeem.

We have already made the reader acquainted with the heroic and more
successful efforts of Colonel Baker, Pasha, in the same direction. He
was not so much of a religious enthusiast as Colonel Gordon, did not
rely on fate, but thought an imposing, organized force the best way to
strike terror into these piratical traders, and at the same time inspire
the negro races with better views of self protection. In the long and
brilliant record which Colonel Baker made in Africa, the honors he
gathered as a military hero bent on suppressing the slave trade will
ever be divided evenly with those acquired as a dauntless traveller and
accurate scientific observer.

Let it not be thought that slave catching and selling is now extinct.
True, the care exercised in the waters of the Red Sea and Indian Ocean,
makes it difficult to run slave cargoes into Arabia and the further east.
True, Baker’s expedition broke up a force of some two thousand organized
kidnappers on the Upper White Nile, but these piratical adventurers are
still abroad in more obscure paths and compelled to rely more on guile
and cunning than on force for securing their prey.

But let us pursue our journey from Kartoum toward the “Springs of the
Nile.” We do not take the Blue Nile. That comes down from the east, and
the Abyssinian mountains. We take the White Nile, which is the true Nile,
and comes up from the south or southwest. And we must suppose we are
going along with Colonel Baker on his first journey, which was one in
search of the Nile sources. It was a scientific tour, and not an armed
one like his second expedition.

Entering the White Nile, we plunge into a new world——a region whose
climate and animal and vegetable life, in brief, whose whole aspect and
nature, are totally unlike those of the desert which stretches up to
the walls of Kartoum. We are within the zone of regular rainfall, an
intermediate region that extends to the margin of the great lakes, where
we meet with the equatorial belt of perennial rains. Henceforth we have
not only heat but moisture acting upon the face of nature.


One may determine which of the two climates is the more tolerable
by considering whether he would prefer to be roasted or stewed. The
traveller would find it hard to decide whether the desert or the swamp is
the greater bar to his advance. Every mile of progress marks an increase
of dampness and of warmth. First of all, we pass through the great mimosa
forest, which extends, belt-like, almost across the continent, marking
the confines of the Sahara and the Soudan. The reader must not imagine
a dense girdle of tall trees and tangled undergrowth, but a park-like
country, with wide glades between clumps and lines of thorny shrubbery.
The mimosa, or Arabian acacia——the tree from which the gum-arabic of
commerce is extracted——has assigned to it the out-post duty in the
struggle between tropical luxuriance and desert drought. By and by it
gives place to the ambatch as the characteristic tree of the Nile. The
margin of the river becomes marshy and reedy. The water encroaches
on the land and the land on the water. The muddy stream rolls lazily
along between high walls of rank vegetation, and bears whole islands of
intertwisted leaves, roots and stems on its bosom, very much as an Arctic
strait bears its acres of ice floes. It breaks up into tortuous channels
that lead everywhere and nowhere. A nearly vertical sun shines down on
the voyager as he slowly toils up stream. Scarcely a breath of air stirs
to blow away the malarious mists or fill a drooping sail. Mosquitoes are
numerous, and insatiate for blood.

Day thus follows day with nothing to break the monotony except now and
then the appearance of a hippopotamus, rising snortingly to the surface,
a crocodile with his vicious jaws, or, where the land is solid, a buffalo
pushing his head through the reeds to take a drink. The true river margin
is invisible except from the boat’s masts over the head of the tall
papyrus. Even could we reach it, we would wish ourselves back again,
for of all the growth of this dismal swamp man is the most repulsive.
The Dinka tribes of the White Nile are among the lowest in the scale of
human beings. They are naked, both as to clothing and moral qualities.
The Shillooks are a finer race physically, but inveterate pirates and

In the midst of this swampy region the Nile receives another important
tributary from the mountains of Southern Abyssinia. It is the Sobat
which, Speke says, “runs for a seven days’ journey through a forest so
dense as to completely exclude the rays of the sun.”

Above its mouth we must be prepared to meet the greatest of all the
obstructions of the Nile. Here are many small affluents from both east
and west, and here is a vast stretch of marsh through which the waters
soak as through a sponge. In the centre of this “sponge” tract is a small
lake——Lake No. But to reach it or emerge from it again, by means of
the labyrinthine channels, is a work of great difficulty. The “sponge”
is a thick coating of roots, grasses and stems matted together so as to
conceal the waters, yet open enough for them to percolate through. It
may be ventured upon by human feet, and in many places supports quite a
vegetation. But the traveller is in constant danger of falling through,
to say nothing of the danger from various animals. It was through this
“sponge” that Colonel Baker, in his second Nile expedition, managed
to cut a canal, through which was dragged the first steamer that ever
floated on the head waters of the great river.

[Illustration: CROSSING A SPONGE.]

Having passed this obstacle the journey is easier to Gondokoro, where
the land is firm. Twenty-three years ago Gondokoro was a collection of
grass huts in the midst of an untrodden wilderness, and surrounded by
barbarous and hostile tribes. It has since been made an Egyptian military
station and named Ismailia.

Though the spot is not inviting except as it affords you rest after your
hardships, yet it is the scene of an interesting episode in the history
of African exploration. Speke and Grant had started on their memorable
trip from Zanzibar in 1861. Colonel Baker and his wife had started up the
Nile for its sources in the same year. Now it is February, 1863. A travel
stained caravan, with two white men at its head, comes down the high
ground back of the station. They quicken their pace and enter the village
with shouts, waving of flags and firing of musketry. It is Speke and
Grant on their return trip, with the secret of the Nile in their keeping.

On their long tramp they had visited strange peoples and countries, and
by courage and tact had escaped unharmed from a number of difficulties
and perils. They had traced the one shore of that vast reservoir of fresh
water under the Equator which Speke had sighted on a previous expedition,
and had named Victoria Nyanza. They had seen this beautiful equatorial
reservoir discharging its surplus waters northward over the picturesque
Ripon Falls, and knew that they were in possession of the secret which
all the world had sought from the beginning.

Lower down, at the Karuma Falls, they were compelled to leave the stream,
which they now felt sure was the Nile. Crossing to the right bank, they
struck across the country, northward, and in a direct line for Gondokoro.
Here they caught sight of the furthest outpost of Egyptian exploration,
and again gladly looked on the river that was to bear them down to the

By a curious coincidence, the first Englishman who had penetrated so far
to the southward, was at that moment in Gondokoro. Samuel Baker and his
wife were interrupted in their preparations for their journey to the Nile
sources by the noise of the approaching party, and they rode out to see
what all the hubbub meant. Four people from a distant nook of Europe met
in the heart of Africa; and as they clasped hands, the hoary secret of
the Nile was unriddled! All of them had numberless difficulties before
as well as behind them; but their hearts were undismayed, and swelled
only with pride at what had been accomplished for science and for their
native land. The travellers from Zanzibar bore the marks of their long
journey——“battered and torn, but sound and seaworthy.” “Speke,” Baker
tells us, “appeared the more worn of the two; he was excessively lean,
but in reality in good tough condition. He had walked the whole way
from Zanzibar, never having once ridden during the weary march. Grant
was in honorable rags, his bare knees projecting through the remnants
of trousers that were an exhibition of rough industry in tailor-work.
He was looking tired and feverish, but both men had a fire in the eye
that showed the spirit that had led them through.” The first greetings
over, Baker’s earliest question was: Was there no leaf of the laurel
reserved for him? Yes; there was. Below the Karuma Falls, Speke and Grant
had been informed the stream from the Victoria Nyanza fell into and
almost immediately emerged again from another lake, the Luta Nzigé. This
therefore might be the ultimate reservoir of the Nile waters. No European
had ever seen or heard of this basin before. Baker determined it should
be his prize.

But now we meet a new class of obstacles as we undertake a land journey
into intertropical Africa. There is no longer, as in the desert, danger
from thirst and starvation, for game abounds, and we are in some degree
out of the interminable swamps of river navigation. But a small army of
porters must be got together. They must be drilled, and preparations must
be made for feeding them. True, some explorers have gone well nigh alone.
But it is not best. Stanley always travelled with one to two hundred
natives, and quite successfully.

And these natives are by no means easy to handle. They are ready to make
bargains, but are panicky and often desert, or, what is worse, take
advantage of any relaxation of discipline to rise in mutiny. Their leader
must be stern of will, yet kind and good-natured, wise as a serpent and
watchful as a hawk. When a start is made, difficulties accumulate. You
must expect incredible rainfalls, and an amazing growth of vegetation.
Then in the dry season, which is hardly more than two to three months in
a year, the shrubs and grasses are burned up far and wide.


Everywhere there is jungle of grass, reeds and bamboos, when the
rivers are at their height; and amid the forests the great stems of
the pandanus, banana and boabab are covered to their tops with a
feathery growth of ferns and orchids, and festooned with wild vines and
creeping plants. The native villages are almost smothered under the dark
luxuriance of plant life, and lions and other beasts of prey can creep up
unseen to the very doors of the huts. The whole country becomes a tangled
brake, with here and there an open space, or a rough track marking where
an elephant, rhinoceros or buffalo has crushed a way in the high grass.

Then ahead of us, and between Gondokoro and the lakes we seek, the
country has been so raided by slave hunters, that every native can be
counted on as an enemy. Or a native war may be in progress, and if so,
great care must be taken to avoid siding with either party. We must
retreat here and push on there, avoiding perils of this class as we value
our lives. There is no road through Africa of one’s own choice, and none
that may not entail an entire backward step for days, and perhaps forever.

At Gondokoro we are in the midst of the Bari tribe. Pagans before,
contact with the Arab wanderers and slave stealers has made them savages.
They live in low thatched huts, rather neat in appearance, and surrounded
by a thick hedge to keep off intruders. The men are well grown and
the women not handsome, but the thick lips and flat nose of the negro
are wanting. They tattoo their stomachs artistically, and smear their
bodies with a greasy pigment of ochre. Their only clothing is a bunch of
feathers stuck in the slight tuft of hair which they permit to grow on
their heads, and a neat lappet around the loins, of about six inches in
depth, to which is appended a tail piece made of shreds of leather or

Every man carries his weapons, pipe and stool. The former are chiefly
the bow and arrows. They use a poisoned arrow when fighting. The effect
of the poison in the system is not to kill but to corrode the flesh and
bone, till they drop away in pieces. The bows are of bamboo, not very
elastic, and the archers are not dexterous.

It was while in Gondokoro, on this his first Nile journey, that Baker had
opportunity to study, and occasion to feel, the enormities of the slave
traffic. The Moslem traders regarded him as a spy on their nefarious
operations. They manacled their slaves more closely and stowed them
away securely in remote and secret stockades. Their conduct as citizens
was outrageous, for they kept the town in a continual uproar by their
drinking bouts, their brawls with the natives, and promiscuous firing of
guns and pistols. One of their bullets killed a boy of Baker’s party. It
was evident that these marauders were intent on compelling him to make a
hasty departure, for they incited trouble among his men, and inflamed
the natives against his presence.

As an instance of the trouble which grew out of this, his men asked the
privilege of stealing some cattle from the natives for a feast. He denied
their request. A mutiny was the result. Baker ordered the ringleader
to be bound and punished with twenty-five lashes. The men refused to
administer the punishment and stood by their ringleader. Baker undertook
to enforce the order himself, when the black leader rushed at him with
a stick. Baker stood his ground and knocked his assailant down with his
fist. Then he booted him severely, while his companions looked on in
amazement at his boldness and strength. But they rallied, and commenced
to pelt him with sticks and stones. His wife saw his danger. She ordered
the drums to be beaten and in the midst of the confusion rushed to the
rescue. The clangor distracted the attention of the assailants, and a
parley ensued. The matter was settled by a withdrawal of the sentence on
the condition that the leader should apologize and swear fealty again.

Before Baker could complete his preparations for starting, the fever
broke out in Gondokoro, and both he and his wife fell sick. In order to
escape the effluvium of the more crowded village, he moved his tents and
entire encampment to the high ground above the river. While the animals
were healthy, the donkeys and camels were attacked by a greenish brown
bird, of the size of a thrush, with a red beak and strong claws. It lit
on the beasts to search for vermin, but its beak penetrated the flesh,
and once a hole was established, the bird continually enlarged it to the
great annoyance of the animal which could neither eat nor sleep. The
animals had to be watched by boys continually till their wounds were

An Arab guide, named Mohammed, had been engaged, and the expedition was
about to move. Mrs. Baker had brought a boy along from Kartoum, by the
name of Saat. He had become quite attached to her, as had another servant
named Richarn. The guide, Mohammed, said he had seventy porters ready and
that a start could be made on Monday. But the fellow was in a conspiracy
to start on Saturday without Baker. Mrs. Baker found it out through Saat
and Richarn. She ordered the tents to be struck and a start to be made
on the moment. This nonplussed Mohammed. He wavered and hesitated. She
brought his accusers face to face with him when, to Baker’s astonishment,
the plot came out, that the entire force of porters had conspired to
desert as soon as they got the arms and ammunition in their hands, and to
kill Baker in case resistance was offered.

Nothing was left but to disarm and discharge the whole force. He gave
them written discharges, with the word “mutineer” beneath his signature,
and thus the fellows, none of whom could read, went about bearing the
evidences of their own guilt. Baker now tried in vain to enlist a new
party of porters. The people had been poisoned against him. He applied
to Koorschid, a Circassian chief, for ten elephant hunters and two
interpreters, but the wily chief avoided him. It looked as if he would
have to give over his contemplated journey for the season. But by dint of
hard work he managed to gather seventeen men, whom he hoped to make true
to him by kind treatment. At this juncture a party of Koorschid’s people
arrived from the Latooka country with a number of porters. Their chief,
Adda, a man of magnificent proportions, took a fancy to Baker and invited
him to visit the Latookas. He was given presents, and his picture was
taken, which pleased him greatly. His followers came and were similarly
treated and delighted. They agreed to accompany Baker back to their
country, but a body of Turkish traders were also going thither. They not
only declared that Baker should not have the escort of these people, but
actually pressed them into their own service. And then, to make things
worse, they threatened to incite the tribes through which they had to
pass against him should he dare to follow.

Baker thought he could meet any mischief of this kind by dealing
liberally in presents, and so resolved to follow the traders. He loaded
his camels and donkeys heavily, and started with his seventeen untried
men. Mrs. Baker was mounted on a good Abyssinian horse, carrying several
leather bags at the pommel of the saddle. Colonel Baker was similarly
mounted and loaded. They had neither guide nor interpreter. Not one
native was procurable, owing to the baleful influence of the traders.
Their journey began about an hour after sunset, and Colonel Baker, taking
the distant mountains of Balignan as his landmark, led the way.

If we are now amid the hardships of an African journey, we are also amid
its excitements. Can we outstrip the Turkish traders? If so it will be
well, for then they cannot stir up the tribes against us. We will try.
But our camels are heavily loaded, and their baggage catches in the
overhanging bramble. Every now and then one of those most heavily top
laden is swung from his path, and even rolls into a steep gulch, when he
has to be unpacked and his load carried up on to the level before being
replaced. It is tantalizing for those in a hurry. But the traders are
also travelling slowly for they are buying and selling.

Presently two of their Latookas come to us, having deserted. They are
thirsty, and direct us to a spot where water can be had. While we are
drinking, in comes a party of natives with the decayed head of a wild
boar, which they cook and eat, even though the maggots are thick in it.
The health of these people does not seem to be affected by even the most
putrid flesh.

These Latooka deserters now become guides. They lead the way, with
Colonel and Mrs. Baker. The country is that of the Tolloga natives.
While we halt under a fig tree to rest and await the rearward party with
the laden animals, the Tollogas emerge from their villages and surround
us. There are five or six hundred of them, all curious, and especially
delighted at sight of our horses. They had never seen a horse before.
We inquire for their chief, when a humped-backed little fellow asked in
broken Arabic who we were.

Colonel Baker said he was a traveller.

“Do you want ivory?” asked the hunchback.

“We have no use for it.”

“Ah, you want slaves?”

“No we do not want slaves.”

At this there was a shout of laughter, as though such thing could not be.
Then the hunchback continued:

“Have you got plenty of cows?”

“No, but plenty of beads and copper.”

“Where are they?”

“With my men. They will be here directly.”

“What countryman are you?”

“An Englishman.”

He had never heard of such a people.

“You are a Turk,” he continued.

“All right; anything you like.”

“And that is your son?” pointing to Mrs. Baker.

“No, that is my wife.”

“Your wife! What a lie! He is a boy.”

“Not a bit of it. This is my wife who has come along with me to see the
women of your country.”

“What a lie!” he again exclaimed.

Mrs. Baker was dressed precisely like her husband, except that her
sleeves were long while the Colonel’s arms were bare.

Soon Tombe, the chief of the tribe, put in an appearance. He is
propitiated with plenty of beads and copper bracelets and drives his
importunate people away. The hunchback is employed as interpreter, and
now our party is away over a rough road, determined to beat the Turks
through the Ellyrian tribe beyond. But it is too late. Their advance is
ahead. Their centre passes us in disdain. Their leader, Ibrahim, comes
up, scowls and passes on. Mrs. Baker calls to the Colonel to stop him
and have a friendly talk. He does so, tells him they need never clash as
they are after two entirely different objects. Then he shows him how he
could either punish or befriend him once they were back at Kartoum. The
old villain listens, and is moved. Baker then gives him a double-barreled
gun and some gold. Both parties now march into Ellyria together, glad to
escape the rocky defiles which had to be threaded on the last stages of
the journey, where many a trader has lost his life.

We here meet with Legge, the chief, who demands blackmail. Baker gives
liberally of beads and bracelets, but Legge gives nothing in return,
except some honey. Our men have to draw for food on the reserve stores
of rice, which they no sooner boil and mix with the honey than along
comes Legge and helps himself, eating like a cormorant till he can
hold no more. We can only stay here one day, for the people are very
annoying and will part with nothing except their honey. So we leave these
bullet-headed natives, and start again toward Latooka, over a level
country and an easier road.

Old Ibrahim and Colonel and Mrs. Baker now lead the way.

The wily old Arab gets confidential, and informs the Colonel that his
men intend to mutiny as soon as they get to Latooka. This news gives the
Colonel time to prepare. In two days we enter the Wakkula country, rich
in pasturage and abundant in water, literally filled with big game, such
as elephants, rhinoceri, buffalo, giraffes, wild boars and antelope. A
buffalo is found in a trap, and partly eaten by a lion. The men make a
feast of the remainder. It is the first meat they have eaten since they
left Gondokoro, and it is a great relish. A hunt by the Colonel brings in
several fine antelope, enough to last till Latooka is reached.

And now we are among the Latooka villages. There are Turkish traders
there already, for they are gathered in Latome, a border village. They
fire off guns, and forbid Ibrahim and his party to pass, claiming an
exclusive right to trade there. There is a row between the Moslem
traders, in which poor Ibrahim is almost strangled to death. The Colonel
observes a strict neutrality, as the time had not come for him to take

After wrangling for hours all retired to sleep. The next morning he calls
his men to resume the march. Four of them rise in mutiny, seize their
guns and assume a threatening attitude. Belaal, the leader, approaches
and says:——

“Not a man shall go with you. Go where you will with Ibrahim, but we
won’t move a step. You may employ niggers to load the camels, but not us.”

“Lay down your gun, and load the camels!” thunders the Colonel.

“I won’t,” was the defiant reply.

“Then stop right here!” As quick as a flash the Colonel lands a blow
on his jaw, and the ringleader rolls in a heap among the luggage, the
gun flying in the opposite direction. There is a momentary panic,
during which the Colonel seizes a rifle and rushes among the mutineers,
insisting on their going to work and almost dragging them to their
places. They obey mechanically. The camels are soon loaded and we are off
again. But Ibrahim and his party have been gone for some time.

Belaal and four others soon after desert. The Colonel declares the
vultures will soon pick their bones. Four days after, word comes that the
deserters have been killed by a party of savages. The rest of the party
think it came about in accordance with the Colonel’s prophecy, and credit
him with magical powers.

Thirteen miles from Latome is Tarrangolle, the largest Latooka village,
where Moy, the chief, resides. Here Ibrahim stopped to collect his
ivory and slaves. Crowds came out of the village to meet us, but their
chief attraction was Mrs. Baker and the camels. These Latookas are,
doubtless, the finest made savages in all Africa. They are tall, muscular
and beautifully proportioned. They have high foreheads, large eyes,
high cheek bones, small mouths, and full, but not thick lips. Their
countenances are pleasing, their manners civil. They are frank but
warlike, merry yet always ready for a fight. Tarrangolle has 3000 houses,
surrounded by palisades; and each house is fortified by a stockade. The
houses are very tall and bell shaped. They are entered by a low door
not over two feet high. The interior is clean but unlighted by windows.
Their cattle are kept in kraals and are very carefully tended. Their
dead, who are killed in war, are allowed to lie on the field as food for
vultures. Those who die at home are lightly buried for a time. Then they
are exhumed, the flesh stripped off, and the bones put into an earthen
jar, which is deposited in the common pile or mound outside of the
village. Every village has its burial pile, which is a huge collection of
jars. They wear no clothes, but bestow great attention on their hair.
Their weapons are the lance, an iron-head mace, a long bladed knife,
and an ugly iron bracelet armed with knife blades four inches long. The
women are not as finely shaped as the men. They are large, heavy limbed
creatures, used to drudgery.

Chief Moy visits us and looks for the first time on a white person. The
Colonel makes presents of beads, bracelets, and a necklace of pearls
for Bokke, the chief’s favorite wife. “What a row there will be in the
family when my other wives see Bokke’s present,” says the wily old chief.
The Colonel takes the hint and gives him three pounds of beads to be
divided between his wives. Next day, Bokke comes to the Colonel’s hut,
all covered with beads, tatooed on her cheeks, and with a piece of ivory
hanging in her lower lip. She is not bad looking, and her daughter is as
comely a savage as you ever saw.

Horrid word comes that a party of Turkish traders have been massacred in
a Latooka village which they had tried to destroy and to make slaves of
the inhabitants. All is now excitement. Ibrahim’s party and our own are
in imminent danger. But Moy intercedes for his white guests and appeases
the angry natives. Though rich in cattle, our party cannot get a pound
of beef from these Latookas. But ducks and geese are plenty in a stream
close by, and we are allowed to kill all we want.

Let us look in upon a Latooka funeral dance in honor of a dead warrior.
What grotesque dresses the dancers appear in! Ostrich feathers adorn
their helmets of hair, leopard and monkey skins hang from their
shoulders, bells dangle at a waist belt, an antelope horn is hung round
the neck, which is blown in the midst of the excitement. The dancers rush
round and round in an “infernal galop,” brandishing lances and maces,
and keeping pretty fair time. The women keep outside the lines, dance
awkwardly and scream like catamounts. Beyond them are the children,
greasy with red ochre and ornamented with beads, keeping time with their
feet to the inward movement. One woman runs into the midst of the men and
sprinkles ashes promiscuously on all from a gourd. She is fat and ugly,
but evidently an important part of the occasion.

These people are bright, and argue in favor of their materialistic belief
with great shrewdness. The Colonel tried to illustrate his belief by
placing a grain of corn in the ground and observing:——“That represents
you when you die.” Covering it with earth, he continued, “The grain will
decay, but from it will arise a plant that will reproduce it again in its
original form.”

“Precisely,” said old Comorro, brother of Moy, “that I understand. But
the original grain does not rise again; it rots like the dead man and is
ended; so I die, and am ended; but my children grow up like the fruit of
the grain. Some have no children; some grains perish; then all is ended.”

Here we remain for two weeks, waiting till Ibrahim comes back from
Gondokoro, whither he had gone with ivory, and whence he has promised
to bring a supply of ammunition. Meanwhile we must enjoy a hunt, for
evidences of game are plenty. We are soon out among the long grasses,
when suddenly a huge rhinoceros bolts from the copse close at hand. The
Colonel calls on his companions to bring a gun, but instead of obeying
they set up a cry, which is to call attention to a herd of bull elephants
in the forest at the end of the grassy plain. Two of the herd spy him and
come bearing down upon him. He dismounts to get a shot, but the beasts
see the dusky Latookas and rush off again to join their companions. The
Colonel quickly mounts and dashes after them, but his horse falls into a
buffalo hole and throws him. Mounting again, he pursues, but his game has
gotten well into the forest. On he goes after the herd, to find himself
in close quarters with a huge beast that comes tearing along, knocking
down everything in his track. Firing unsteadily from the saddle, he
lodges a bullet in the animal’s shoulder. It turns and makes directly
for its assailant, bellowing like a demon. The Colonel puts spurs to
his horse, and makes his escape. Arming himself with a heavier gun, he
returns to the attack and soon sees the herd again, moving toward him.
One princely fellow has a splendid pair of tusks. This he singles out for
his game. The elephants at first flee on his approach, but on finding
themselves pursued they turn and give battle. There is no safety there,
and again he retreats. A third trial brings him upon the beast he has
wounded. It is maddened with pain and dashes at him. Trusting to his
horse he rushes out of the tangle. The beast does not give up pursuit but
follows on. His horse is jaded, and the riding is dangerous owing to the
buffalo holes. The beast gains, and the Colonel’s cowardly companions
give no help. A moment more and the beast will be on him. He suddenly
wheels his horse, and hears the swish of the elephant’s trunk past his
ears, as the monster beast plunges on in its direct course. It gives
over the chase, and keeps on up the hill. It is found dead next morning
from the effects of the bullet wound. Elephant meat is highly prized by
the natives, and the fat also. With the latter they mix the pigments for
their bodies. Their favorite method of capturing the animal is by pits,
dug very deep in the animal’s path and covered over with light brambles
and grasses. They seldom attack with spears, except when they fire the
grasses. Then they take advantage of the panic which ensues and attack at
close quarters.

Ibrahim returns with plenty of ammunition and reports that he is going to
the Obbo country. We are delighted, for it is directly on our way to the
“Lakes of the Nile.” So we all go together. The country between Latooka
and Obbo, a distance of forty miles, is very beautiful. It abounds in
mountains on whose impregnable peaks native villages are seen, and in
green valleys filled with game. Wild fruit and nuts are also found in
plenty. The journey is easy and quick. The chief of Obbo is Katchiba,
an old clownish man who did not beg, for a wonder. He gives a dance in
our honor, which is really an artistic affair. The dusky dancers kept
excellent time to their drums and sang a wild chorus with considerable
effect. The Obbo men wear dresses of skin slung around their shoulders,
but the women are nearly naked——the unmarried girls entirely so.

The secret of Chief Katchiba’s power over his tribe is sorcery.

When his people displease him he threatens to curse their goats or wither
their flocks. Should rain fail to fall, he tells them he is sorry they
have behaved so badly toward him as to merit such a punishment. Should
it rain too much, he threatens to pour lightning, storm and rain on them
eternally, if they don’t bring him their contribution of goats, corn and
beer. They always receive his blessing before starting on a journey,
believing it will avert evil. In sickness he is called to charm away
the disease. And the old fellow receives so many presents of daughters
that he is able to keep a harem in every village of his tribe. He counts
116 living children. Each village is ruled by a son, so that the whole
government is a family affair.

The fine old fellow treats us like princes, and gives us much information
about the country to the south. The Colonel leaves his wife in the old
chief’s care, and we take a little trip, with eight men, to test the
accuracy of the old chief’s story about the high water in the river
Ashua. We pass through a magnificent country and find the river a
roaring torrent. The chief’s story was true. We return to find Mrs.
Baker in excellent health and spirits having been kindly cared for
during our absence. But the old chief has fared rather badly. He wanted
some chickens to present to Mrs. Baker. His people proved stingy, and
Katchiba, who could not walk much on account of his infirmities, the
chief of which was a head always befuddled with beer, came to ask for
the loan of a horse, that he might appear on his back among his people
and thus strike terror into them. His former method of travel had been
to mount on the back of his subjects, and thus make his state journeys,
followed by one of the strongest of his wives, bearing the inevitable
beer pitcher.

Though warned by Mrs. Baker of the danger attending such an experiment as
he proposed, he persisted, and one of the blooded Abyssinian animals was
brought out equipped for a ride. The old chief mounted and told his horse
to go. The animal did not understand and stood still. “Hit him with your
stick,” said one of the attendants. Thwack! came the chief’s staff across
the animal’s shoulders. Quick as lightning a pair of heels flew into the
air, and the ancient specimen of African royalty shot over the horse’s
head and lay sprawling on the ground. He picked himself up, considerably
bruised and sprained, took a wondering look at the horse, and decided
that riding a beast of that kind, where one had so far to fall, was not
in his line.

[Illustration: A ROYAL JOURNEY.]

Since we cannot go on with our journey till the rivers to the south
of us fall, it is best to go back to Latooka, where supplies are more
abundant. Katchiba sends us off amid a noisy drum ceremony and with his
blessing, his brother going along as a guide. There is a new member of
the party, one Ibrahimawa, who had been to all the ends of the earth,
as soldier and adventurer. He was of Bornu birth, but had been captured
when a boy, and taken into the service of the Sultan of Turkey. Even now
he was connected with the Turkish garrison, or squad of observation, at
Latooka. He got the whole party into a pretty mess the second day after
starting back for Latooka, by bringing in a basketful of fine yams, which
happened to be of a poisonous variety. On eating them, all got sick, and
had to submit to the penalty of a quick emetic, which brought them round
all right.

We now journey easily through the great Latooka, where game is so
abundant. In sight is a herd of antelope. The Colonel dismounts to stalk
them, but a swarm of baboons spy him and at once set up such a chattering
and screeching that the antelope take the alarm and make off. One of
the baboons was shot. It was as large as a mastiff and had a long brown
mane like a lion. This was taken by the natives for a body ornament.
That same evening the Colonel goes out in quest of other game. A herd of
giraffes appear, with their long necks stretched up toward the leaves of
the mimosa trees, on which they are feeding. He tries to stalk them, but
the wary beasts run away in alarm. He follows them for a long way in vain
chase. They were twice as fleet as his horse.

We are back again at Latooka. But how changed the scene. The small pox is
raging among both natives and Turks. We cannot encamp in the town. Mrs.
Baker falls sick with fever. Two horses, three camels and five donkeys
die for us. King Moy had induced the Turks to join him in an attack on
the Kayala tribe, and the combined forces had been beaten. Thus more
enemies had been made. It was no place to stay. So we must back to Obbo,
and the old chief Katchiba.

But here things are even worse. The small pox is there ahead of us,
carried by careless natives or dirty, unprincipled Moslem traders, and
the whole town is in misery. A party of roving traders had raided it and
carried off nearly the whole stock of cows and oxen. Our horses all die,
and most of our other animals, under the attacks of the dreadful tsetse
fly. Both the Colonel and Mrs. Baker fall sick with fever, and the old
chief comes in to cure them by enchantment. It rains nearly all the time,
and rats and even snakes seek the huts out of the wet. Our stay of two
months here is dreary enough, and the wonder is that any of us ever get

As soon as the Colonel and Lady Baker can go out they pay a visit to
Katchiba, which he appreciates, and invites them into his private
quarters. It is only a brewery, where his wives are busy preparing his
favorite beer. The old chief invites them to a seat, takes up something
which passes for a harp, and asks if he may sing. Expecting something
ludicrous, they consent, but are surprised to hear a really well sung and
neatly accompanied air. The old fellow is evidently as expert in music as
in beer drinking.

Waiting is awful in any African village during the rainy or any other
season, and especially if the low fevers of the country are in your
system. We have really lost from May to October, on account of the
fullness of the streams south of us. Our stock of quinine is nearly gone;
our cattle are all dead. Shall we go on? If so, it must be afoot. And
afoot it shall be, for we have met an Unyoro slave woman who tells as
well as she can about a lake called Luta N’Zige, very nearly where we
expect to find the Albert Nyanza.

Now the rains have ceased. Wonderful country! Crops spring up as if by
magic, especially the tullaboon, or African corn. But the elephants like
it and play havoc by night in the green fields. The Colonel, all ague
shaken as he is, determines to have a night’s sport and to bring in some
meat which he knows the natives will relish. Starting with a servant and
a goodly supply of heavy rifles——among them is “The Baby,” which carries
a half pound explosive shell——he digs a watch hole near a corn field.
Into this they creep, and are soon notified of the presence of a herd of
elephants by the crunching of the crisp grain. It is dark, but by and
by one approaches within twelve paces. Taking the range of the shoulder
as well as he can, the contents of “Baby” are sent on their murderous
errand. It was then safe to beat a retreat. Next morning the elephant is
found near the pit. He is still standing, but soon drops dead. The shot
was fatal, but not for several hours. And now such a time as there is
among the natives. Three hundred of them gather, and soon dispose of the
carcass with their knives and lances. The huge beast was ten feet six
inches in height.

By January, the waters in the rivers and gulches have subsided enough to
admit of travel. Katchiba gives us three oxen——two for pack animals, and
one for Mrs. Baker to ride upon. With these, and a few attendants, we
start for the south. But Ibrahim precedes us with an armed body of Turks.
He is penetrating the country further in search of ivory and booty. It is
well for us to follow in his trail, unless forsooth he should get into a

The Colonel walks eighteen miles to Farajoke where he purchases a riding
ox. On January 13, Shooa is reached. It is a veritable land of plenty.
There are fowls, goats, butter, milk, and food of all kinds. The natives
are delighted to see us, and are greedy for our beads and trumpery. They
bring presents of flour and milk to Mrs. Baker, who showers upon them
her trinkets in return. The people are not unlike the Obbo’s, but their
agriculture is very superior. Our five days here are days of real rest
and refreshment.

We make an eight mile march to Fatiko, where the natives are still more
friendly. But they insist on such vigorous shaking of hands and such
tiresome ceremonies of introduction, that we must hasten away. And now
our march is still through a beautiful country for several days. We
gradually approach the Karuma Falls, close to the village of Atada, on
the opposite side of the river. It is the Unyoro country whose king is

The natives swarm on their bank of the river, and soon a fleet of canoes
comes across. Their occupants are informed that Col. Baker wishes to
see the king, in order to thank him for the kindness he had extended
to the two Englishmen, Speke and Grant on their visit. The boatmen are
suspicious, for only a short time before a party of Arab traders had
allied themselves with Kamrasi’s enemies and slain 300 of his people. It
takes two whole days to overcome the king’s suspicions, and many gifts of
beads and trinkets. Finally we are ferried across, but oh! the tedious
wait to get a royal interview! And then the surprise, when it did come.

There sits the king on a copper stool placed on a carpet of leopard
skins, surrounded by his ten principal chiefs. He is six feet tall, of
dark brown skin, pleasing countenance, clothed in a long rich robe of
bark-cloth, with well dressed hands and feet, and perfectly clean. Baker
explains his object in calling and gives rich presents, among which is
a double barrelled gun. The king takes to the gun and orders it to be
fired off. The attendants run away in fright, at which the king laughs
heartily, as though he had discovered a new test for their courage or
played a capital joke. He then makes return presents, among which are
seventeen cows.

Thus friendship is established. The king asks for our help against the
Riongas, his bitterest enemies. We decline, but in turn ask for porters
and guides. The king promises heartily, but as often breaks his promises,
for his object is to keep us with him as long as we have presents to give.

These chiefs, or kings, of the native tribes are the greatest nuisances
in Africa——not even excepting the mosquitoes. They make the traveller
pay court at every stage of his journey, and they know the value of
delay in granting a hearing. The wrongs of the humble negro are many.
His faults are as many, and among them are his careless good humor
and light heartedness——things that in northern climes or under other
circumstances might be classed as redeeming traits. But the faults of
the average African king——there are exceptions to the rule——are such to
try our patience in the extreme. He is as ignorant as his subjects, yet
is complete master of their lives. His cruelty, rapacity and sensuality
are nurtured in him from birth, and there is no antic he will not play in
the name of his authority. In his own eyes he is a demi-god, yet he is
seen by visitors only as a dirty, freakish, cruel, tantalizing savage,
insisting upon a court which has no seriousness about it.

Accomplished and friendly as King Kamrasi seems to be, he is full of
duplicity, cruelty, and rapacity. Speke and Grant complained of his
inordinate greed, and we have just seen for what motive he delayed us
for three weeks. And scarcely have we gone ten miles when he overtakes
us, to ask for other presents and the Colonel’s watch, for which he had
taken a great fancy. On being refused this, he coolly informs the Colonel
that he would send his party to the lake according to promise, but that
he must leave Mrs. Baker behind with him. The Colonel draws his revolver
and, placing it at the breast of the king, explains the insult conveyed
in such a proposition in civilized countries, and tells him he would be
warranted in riddling him on the spot, if he dared to repeat the request,
or rather command. Mrs. Baker makes known her horror of the proposition,
and the crafty king, finding his cupidity has carried him too far, says
he has no intention of offending. “I will give you a wife if you want
one,” he continued, “and I thought you might give me yours. I have given
visitors many pretty wives. Don’t be offended. I will never mention the
matter again.” To make further amends he sends along with our party
several women as luggage carriers, as far as to the next village.

To show how prankish and pitiable royalty is among even a tribe like the
Unyoro’s, who dress with some care, and disdain the less intelligent
tribes about them, it turned out that this Kamrasi was not the real king
at all, but only a substitute, and that the regularly annointed Kamrasi
was in a fit of the sulks off in his private quarters, all the time of
our visit.

The march is now a long one of eighteen days through the dense forests
and swamps of the Kafoor River. Mrs. Baker is sick with fever incident
to a sun-stroke, and has to be borne upon a litter most of the way. In
crossing the Kafoor upon the “sponge,” it yields to the weight of the
footmen, and she is saved from sinking beneath the treacherous surface
by the Colonel, who orders the men to quickly lay their burden down and
scatter. The “sponge” proves strong enough to bear the weight of the
litter alone, and it is safely hauled on to a firmer part by her husband
and an attendant.

We are now near our goal and all the party are enthusiastic. Ascending
a gentle slope, on a beautiful clear morning, the glory of our prize
suddenly bursts upon us. There, like a sea of quicksilver, lays far
beneath us the grand expanse of waters——the Luta Nzigé then, but soon
to be christened the Albert Nyanza. Its white waves break on a pebbly
beach fifteen hundred feet below us. On the west, fifty or sixty miles
distant, blue mountains rise to a height of 7000 feet. Northward the
gleaming expanse of waters seem limitless. Here is the reward of all our
labor. It is a basin worthy of its great function as a gathering place of
the headwaters of the Nile, which issue in a full grown stream from its
northern end.

Using Colonel Baker’s own language,——“Long before I reached the spot I
had arranged to give three English cheers in honor of the discovery, but
now that I looked down upon the great inland sea lying nestled in the
very heart of Africa, and thought how vainly mankind had sought these
sources throughout so many ages, and reflected that I had been the humble
instrument permitted to unravel this portion of the great mystery when so
many greater than I had failed, I felt too serious to vent my feelings in
vain cheers for victory, and I sincerely thanked God for having guided
and supported us through all dangers to the good end. As I looked down
from the steep granite cliffs upon those welcome waters, on that vast
reservoir which nourished Egypt and brought fertility where all was
wilderness, on that great source so long hidden from mankind; that source
of bounty and of blessings to millions of human beings; and as one of the
greatest objects in nature, I determined to honor it with a great name.
As an imperishable memorial of one loved and mourned by our gracious
Queen and deplored by every Englishman, I called the great lake ‘the
Albert Nyanza.’ The Victoria and the Albert Lakes are the two sources of
the Nile. My wife, who had followed me so devotedly, stood by my side,
pale and exhausted——a wreck upon the shores of the great Albert Lake
that we had so long striven to reach. No European foot had ever trod upon
its sand, nor had the eyes of a white man ever scanned its vast expanse
of water. We were the first; and this was the key to the great secret
that even Julius Cæsar yearned to unravel, but in vain.”

And now the lake is christened. We rush down to the shores and bathe our
feet in its clear fresh waters. Then we prepare a frail canoe, large
enough to carry our party of thirteen and manned with twenty oarsmen. In
this we skirt the lake northward from where we first touch it at Vacovia.
The journey is full of novelty. Every now and then we get a shot at a
crocodile, or a hippopotamus, and herds of elephants are seen along the
shores. Thunder storms are frequent, making the navigation dangerous.
The heat at midday drives us into the shade. Our work hours are in the
mornings and evenings. Here we pass under beetling precipices that line
this eastern shore, down which jets of water——each a Nile source——are
seen plunging from the height of a thousand feet. There we float through
flat wastes of reeds, and water plants and floating rafts of vegetable
matter in every stage of growth and decay.

On the thirteenth day we reach the point where the waters from Lake
Victoria Nyanza enter the Albert Nyanza. They pour in through the
Victoria River, or as some call it, the Somerset River. Now arises a
momentous question. Shall we go further. If we are not back in Gondokoro
in a few weeks we may leave our bones in Central Africa. We are a
fatigued, even a sick party, and the season is approaching when a white
man had better be away from under the Equator. The Colonel proposes to
forego further navigation and return. Lady Baker, with a fervor the
Colonel seems to have lost, proposes to go to the other end of the lake
in order to make sure that it is an ultimate reservoir of the Nile.

[Illustration: THE MURCHISON FALLS.]

Away off northward from where we are, some thirty miles, can be seen
with the glasses the outlet of the lake——the Nile. It is settled that
the inflow from Victoria Nyanza and the outlet northward are thus close
together. But is that outlet the Nile after all? Lady Baker wants to
settle this question too, and she proposes, after circumnavigating the
lake and proving that it is an ultimate source, to descend the Nile
through the northern outlet. But the Colonel urges want of time. The
attendants tell horrible stories of dangerous falls and hostile natives.
So we decide against Mrs. Baker, and, taking the Colonel’s advice, begin
to ascend the Victoria Nile toward lake Victoria Nyanza, that being
in the direction of our homeward march. We go but a few miles till a
new marvel greets us——the Murchison Falls. On either side of the river
are beautiful wooded cliffs 300 feet high. Bold rocks jut out from an
intensely green foliage. Rushing through a gap in the rock directly ahead
of us, the river, contracted from a broad stream above, grows narrower
and narrower, till where the gorge is scarcely fifty yards wide, it
makes one stupendous leap over a precipice 120 feet high, into the dark
abyss below. The river then widens and grows sluggish again. Anywhere
can be seen numberless crocodiles. While the Colonel is sketching the
Falls, one of these animals comes close to the boat. He cannot resist a
shot at it. The canoemen are disturbed and allow the boat to get an ugly
swing on them. It strikes into a bunch of reeds, when out rushes a huge
hippopotamus in fright and bumps against the canoe, almost oversetting it.

There are cataracts innumerable on the Nile, but this is its greatest
water fall, and a majestic picture it is. Our return journey to Gondokoro
repeats many of our former experiences. We revisit the same tribes and
meet with the same adventures. Kartoum is reached in May, 1865. Then we
go by boat to Berber, and thence by caravan across the desert to Sonakim
on the Red Sea, where a steamer is taken for England, and where the
Colonel receives the medal bestowed on him by the Royal Geographical

In concluding this long journey we must ever regret that Colonel Baker
did not do more to make sure of the honors of his discovery. Since then
Gordon Pasha and M. Gessi have navigated Albert Nyanza. They curtailed
the proportions it showed on first maps, and proved that, as Lady Baker
supposed, it had a southern inlet, which was traced for a hundred miles
till it ended in a mighty ambatch swamp, or collection of stagnant
waters, which may be counted as the Lake Nzige of the natives, and of
which Colonel Baker so often heard.

These travellers also settled forever one of the delusions under which
Livingstone ever labored, and that was, that the sources of the Nile must
be sought as far south as the great Lake Tanganyika, and even further.

Since then, other travellers have traced the whole course of the Victoria
Nile to Lake Victoria Nyanza, discovering on their way a new lake,
Ibrahim. And this brings us to Victoria Nyanza again, which must be
studied more fully, for after all we may not have seen in Albert Nyanza,
so much of an ultimate Nile reservoir as we thought. It is hard too, of
course, to rob our travels of their glory, but we cannot bear laurels at
the expense of after discovered truth.

It was in 1858 that Speke and Grant, pushing their perilous way westward
from Zanzibar on the east coast of Africa, discovered and partly
navigated Lake Tanganyika, probably the greatest fresh water reservoir in
Central Africa. On their return journey, and while resting at Unyanyembe,
Speke heard from an Arab source of a still larger lake to the north.
Grant was suspicious of the information, and remained where he was,
while Speke made a trial. After a three weeks march over an undulating
country, intersected by streams flowing northward, he came in view (July
30, 1858) of the head of a deep gulf expanding to the north. Pursuing
his journey along its eastern cliffs, he saw that it opened into an
ocean-like expanse of water, girted by forests on the right and left, but
stretching eastward and northward into space. He felt that he stood on a
Nile source, but could not inquire further then.

When he returned to England and made his discovery known, powerful
arguments sprang up about these Nile sources. Speke and one school
contended the Nile reservoirs were under the equator and that Victoria
Nyanza was one of them, if not the only one. Burton and others contended
that Tanganyika, and perhaps a series of lakes further south, must be the
true sources. So in 1860 Speke and Grant were back in Africa, determined
to solve the mystery. They were kept back by delays till 1862, when,
as we have seen, they caught sight of the lake they sought. Keeping on
high ground, they followed it northward to Uganda where they fell in
with Mtesa, the king. Mtesa has been painted in all sorts of colors by
different explorers. Speke and Grant formed the worst possible opinion of
him, but they passed through his dominions safely, till they came to the
northern outlet of the lake——the Victoria Nile. Taking for granted that
this was the real Nile, they cut across the country to Gondokoro, where
they met Baker on his southern march, as we have already seen.

This unsatisfactory journey did not set controversy at rest. Speke’s
opponents ridiculed the idea of a body of water, 250 miles long and 7000
feet above the sea level, existing right under the Equator. Moreover they
denied that its northern outlet was the Nile, or if so, that there must
be a southern inlet. All the old maps located the sources of the stream
further south. Colonel Baker heard a native story, in 1869, to the effect
that boats had gone from Albert Nyanza to Ujiji on lake Tanganyika.
Livingstone held firmly to the opinion that all these equatorial lakes
were one with Tanganyika——till he disproved it himself. He never was
convinced that Victoria Nyanza existed at all as Speke had mapped it, nor
that it had any connection with the Nile River.

Thus what Baker and Speke and Grant had been glorying in as great
discoveries, but which they failed to establish by full research, was
still a puzzle. They are not to be robbed of any honors, but it is not
claiming too much to say that the real discoverer of the true Nile
reservoir is due to the American Stanley. At least he resolved to solve
the problem finally and set discussion at rest. He would establish the
claims of Victoria Nyanza to vastness and to its functions as a Nile
source, or show it up as a humbug.

Henry M. Stanley is no ordinary figure among African explorers. In
tenacity of purpose, courage and endurance, he is second only to
Livingstone. In originality, insight and crowning effort, he is ahead
of all. He introduced a new method of African travel and brought a new
power at his back. Already he had, under the auspices of the New York
_Herald_, made a successful Central African journey and “discovered
Livingstone.” On his present expedition he was accredited to both
American and English papers, and bore the flags of the two countries. He
travelled in a half scientific and half military fashion.

[Illustration: HENRY M. STANLEY.]

He started from Zanzibar November 17, 1874. Let the reader keep in mind
that this was his second exploring trip into Africa——the first having
been made a few years before under the auspices of the New York _Herald_
for the rescue of Livingstone, if alive. Here, in his own words, is the
gallant young leader’s order of march:——

[Illustration: STANLEY ON THE MARCH.]

“Four chiefs, a few hundred yards in front; next, twelve guides, clad
in red robes of Jobo, bearing coils of wire; then a long file, two
hundred and seventy strong, bearing cloth, wire, beads, and sections of
the _Lady Alice_; after them, thirty-six women and ten boys, children
of the chiefs, and boat-bearers, followed by riding-asses, Europeans,
and gun-bearers; the long line closed by sixteen chiefs, who act as
rearguard: in all, three hundred and fifty-six souls connected with the
Anglo-American expedition. The lengthy line occupies nearly half a mile
of the path.”

Mr. Stanley did not mean to be stopped on the route he had chosen by
the objections of any native chief to the passage of the little army
through his territory. If the opposition were carried to the extent of
a challenge of battle, the American explorer was prepared to accept it
and fight his way through. In this way he counted on avoiding the long
delays, the roundabout routes, and the fragmentary results which had
marked the efforts of previous travellers. It is an admirable method,
if your main object is to get through the work rapidly, if you are
strong enough to despise all assaults, and if you have no prospect of
travelling the same road again. Its wisdom and justifiableness need
not be discussed; but it may simply be remarked that this conjunction
of campaigning and exploration gives an extra spice of danger and an
exciting variety to the narrative, which carries us back to the time when
the Conquistadors of Spain and Portugal carved their rich conquests into
the heart of Mexico and South America.

He carried with him the sections of a boat, forty feet long, with which
to explore the Victoria Nyanza, or any other lake or stream he might
discover. It was named the “Lady Alice.” He had only three English
assistants——two Thames watermen by the name of Francis and Edward Pocock,
and a clerk named Frederick Barker——none of whom emerged alive from the
African wilds into which they plunged so light heartedly.

Unyanyembe is the half-way station between Zanzibar and the lakes of
interior Africa. It is simply a headquarters for slave stealers and a
regular trading den for land pirates. Stanley turned to the northwest
before reaching this place, and in about the fifth degree south latitude
came upon the water shed which separates the waters trending northward
from those running southward. Here in a plain 5000 feet above the sea,
and 2500 miles in a straight line from the Mediterranean, seemed clearly
to be the most southerly limit of the Nile basin.

And here Stanley’s real difficulties began. The party suffered from want
of food and lost their way. Sickness fell upon the camp, and Edward
Pocock died. The natives themselves were hostile, and Mirambo, chief of
the Ruga-Rugas, a noted freebooter, was in the neighborhood with his
band of cut-throats. By and by the storm clouds burst in war, not with
the bandits however, but with the Ituru tribe. The battle was fought for
three days against great odds. It resulted in the complete discomfiture
of the foe, but with a loss to Stanley of twenty-four killed and wounded.
The weakened expedition moved on bearing twenty-five men on the sick list.

They were now in the valley of the Shimeeyu, an affluent of Victoria
Nyanza from the south. It was followed through dense forests over which
loomed enormous bare rocks like castles, and hillocks of splintered
granite and gneiss, and then through fine rolling plains, rich in pasture
lands, hedge inclosed villages and herds of wild and tame animals.
Compared with what he had passed through it was a grand and glorious

Provisions could be had readily and cheaply——corn, potatoes, fruit, goats
and chickens. The half starved men indulged in feasting and marched with
recovered strength and confidence. Murmuring and doubt died away. The
native attendants who had shown unmistakable proofs of faithfulness in
the midst of trial were specially rewarded.

The lake was near at hand. As they dipped through the troughs of land,
mounted ridge after ridge, crossed water courses and ravines, passed
cultivated fields and through villages smelling of cattle, a loud
hurrahing in front told that the great Lake Victoria Nyanza had been
sighted. It was February 27, 1875. The spot was Kagehyi, not far from
where Speke had struck it. Six hundred feet beneath them, and three
miles away, lay a long broad arm of water shining like silver in the
bright sunshine, bordered by lines of green waving rushes, groves of
trees and native huts.

No time was lost in getting the “Lady Alice” ready, and on March 8 she
was launched and her prow turned northward. Her occupants were Stanley, a
steersman, and ten oarsmen or sailors. Frank Pocock and Barker were left
at Kagehyi in charge of the remainder of the party.

Now began a journey full of thrilling events. Almost every day brought
its danger from storm, shoal, animal or hostile natives. For weeks the
shores of the Nyanza stretched on, promontory behind promontory, and
still the tired mariners toiled along the margin of the unknown lands
on their lee, and out and in among the numerous islands. From the
starting point round the eastern shore, the coast shows a succession of
bold headland and deep bay, at the head of which is generally a river
draining the highlands behind. Sometimes a dark mountain mass, covered
with wood, overhangs the waters, rising abruptly to a height of three
thousand feet or more; and then again there will intervene between
the hills and the lake an open plain, grazed over by herds of zebras,
antelopes, and giraffes. There is great diversity also in the islands.
Many of them are bare masses of rock, supporting no green blade; others
are swathed to the summit in masses of rank intertwisted vegetation that
excludes the perpendicular rays of the sun. Some of the smallest are
highly cultivated, and occupied by a dense population; one or two of the
largest, such as Ugingo, betray no sign of human beings inhabiting their
dismal shades.

Generally the region is rocky, broken, hilly, and intensely tropical in
character. Behind the coast ranges absolutely nothing is known beyond
a few vague reports picked up from native sources. The rivers are not
large, and it is not probable that they have their sources so far off
as the great snowy range that runs down midway between the lake and the
east coast of Africa. Some geographers have chosen to call this chain
by the old name of “Mountains of the Moon,” throwing the old land mark
from the southern borders of Sahara to a point quite south of the equator
and at right angles with their former direction. Between the lake and
these snow-capped mountains roam the Mdai, a fierce pastoral tribe that
subsists by plundering its weaker neighbors.

Stanley heard of hills that smoked in these ranges, and probably they
contain active volcanoes. He also heard of the mythical Lake Baringo
further north. This lake has appeared almost everywhere on African maps.
If it is ever found, it may prove to be the reservoir of the Ashua, an
important Nile tributary, after the stream leaves both Victoria and
Albert Nyanza.

Before reaching the northernmost point of the lake the “Lady Alice”
had passed through several disastrous storms and escaped many perilous
shoals. She had also met the fierce opposition of the Victoria
hippopotamus. This behemoth of an animal abounds here, as it does in
all the waters of tropical Africa; but while in most other places it
refrains from attacking man, unless provoked, it was found on the
Victoria Lake to be of a peculiarly bellicose disposition. A few hours
after starting on his voyage, Stanley was driven off the land and put to
ignominious flight by a herd of savage hippopotami sallying out towards
him open-mouthed. On another occasion, the rowers had to pull for bare
life to escape the furious charge of a monster whose temper had been
ruffled by the boat coming in contact with his back as he was rising to
the surface to breathe. Probably the hippopotamus of the Victoria would
be no more courageous than his neighbors if he were met with on land.
There he always cuts a ridiculous figure, as he waddles along with his
short legs and bulky body in search of the grass on which he feeds. He
seems to know that he is at a disadvantage on _terra firma_, which, he
seldom visits except by night. When interrupted, he makes the best of
his way back to the water, where his great strength always makes him a
formidable antagonist. On the Victoria Nyanza the inhabitants do not seem
to have discovered the methods of killing him practised by the natives of
the Zambesi, by capturing him in pit falls, or setting traps that bring a
heavy log, armed with a long iron spike, down on his stupid skull.

But these were not the only ugly customers the crew of the “Lady Alice”
had to contend with on the Victoria Nyanza. Frequently when the boat
neared the shore, lithe figures could be seen flitting between the trees
and savage eyes peering at her through the dense foliage. If an attempt
were made to land a wild looking crowd would swarm upon the shore,
poising their spears threateningly or placing their arrows in their bows.
Though these forms are not so terrible as the Red Indian in war paint or
the wild Papuan with his frizzly mop of hair, their natural hideousness
is pretty well increased by tattooing and greasy paint. They are
treacherous, cruel, vindictive, and one cast away on their shores would
stand a poor chance of telling his own story.

At a point near the northeastern extremity of the lake Mr. Stanley was
induced to come close to shore by the friendly gestures of half-a-dozen
natives. As the boat was pulled nearer, the group on the shore rapidly
increased, and it was thought prudent to halt. Instantly there started
out of the jungle a forest of spears, and a crowd of yelling savages
rushed down in hot haste to the margin, lest their hospitable intentions
towards the strangers should be balked. The boat, however, to the
astonishment of these primitive black men, hoisted a great sail to the
favoring land breeze, which carried it out to an island where the crew
could camp and sleep in safety for the night. A little further on, while
off the island of Ugamba, a large native canoe, manned by forty rowers
and adorned with a waving mane of long grasses, was pulled confidently
towards the mysterious craft. After reconnoitering it for a little,
they edged up alongside, half of the occupants of the canoe standing up
and brandishing their tufted spears. These visitors had been drinking
freely of pombe to keep up their courage. They were noisy, impudent, and
obstreperous; and finding that the white man and his companions remained
quiet and patient, they began to reel tipsily about the boat, shout out
their drunken choruses, and freely handle the property and persons of the
strangers. Gradually they grew still more unpleasantly aggressive. One
drunken rascal whirled his sling over Stanley’s head and, cheered by
his companions, seemed about to aim the stone at the white man. Suddenly
Stanley, who had his revolver ready in his hand, fired a shot into the
water. In an instant the boat was clear of the intruders, every one of
whom had plunged into the water at sound of the pistol, and was swimming
lustily for the shore. With some little trouble their fears were allayed
and the humbled roisterers, sobered by their dip, came meekly back for
their abandoned canoe. Presents were exchanged and all parted good

He did not fare so well with the Wavuma tribe. They attracted Stanley’s
attention by sending out a canoe loaded with provisions and gifts. But
shoreward suddenly appeared a whole fleet of canoes, evidently bent on
surrounding the “Lady Alice.” As her crew bent to their oars in order
to escape, a storm of lances came upon them from the first canoe, whose
captain held up a string of beads in a tantalizing manner which he had
stolen from the white man’s boat. Stanley fired upon him and doubled him
up in his boat. Then using his larger rifle he punctured the foremost of
the other canoes with heavy bullets below the water line, so that they
had enough to do to keep them from sinking. They ceased to give chase and
the “Lady Alice” escaped.

Directly north of Victoria Nyanza is Uganda or the country of the
Waganda,[1] over which King Mtesa presides. Stanley struck the country
on the next day after his adventure with the Wavuma. It was a revelation
to him. He fancied he had, in a night, passed from Pagan Africa to
Mohammedan Europe or Asia. Instead of the stones and spear thrusts of
the Wavuma he met with nothing save courtesy and hospitality. In place
of naked howling savages he now saw bronze-colored people, clean, neatly
clad, with good houses, advanced agriculture, well adapted industry, and
considerable knowledge of the arts.

[Footnote 1: NOTE:——In Eastern and Central Africa, from the Lakes of the
Nile to Hottentotland the native races belong to the Bantu division of
the African stock. They are not so dark as, and in many respects differ
from, the true negroes of the Western or Atlantic coast. Throughout this
entire Bantu division the prefix “U” means a country. Thus U-ganda is the
country of Ganda. So “Wa,” or in some places “Ba,” “Ma” or “Ama,” means
people. Thus Wa-ganda means the people of Uganda. So would Ba-ganda,
Ma-ganda, or Ama-ganda. “Ki” means the language. Ki-ganda is the language
of the Uganda. “Mena” means the prince of a tribe. By recollecting these,
the reader will be much assisted.]

The village chief approached attired in a white shirt, and a fine cloak
of bark-cloth having over it a monkey skin fur. On his head was a
handsome cap, on his feet sandals. His attendants were clothed in the
same style, though less costly. He smilingly bade the strangers welcome,
spread before them a feast of dressed kid, ripe bananas, clotted milk,
sweet potatoes and eggs, with apologies for having been caught unprepared
for his guests.

Stanley looked on in wonder. It was a land of sunshine and plenty——a
green and flowery Paradise set between the brilliant sky and the pure
azure of the lake. Care and want seem never to have intruded here. There
was food and to spare growing wild in the woods or in the cultivated
patches around the snug homesteads. Every roomy, dome-shaped hut had its
thatched portico where the inhabitants chatted and smoked. Surrounding
them were court-yards, with buildings which served as barns, kitchens
and wash-houses, all enclosed in trimly kept hedges. Outside was the
peasants’ garden where crops of potatoes, yams, pease, kidney-beans
and other vegetables grew of a size that would make a Florida gardner
envious. Bordering the gardens were patches of tobacco, coffee,
sugar-cane, and castor oil plant, all for family use. Still further
beyond were fields of maize and other grains, and plantations of banana,
plantain, and fig. Large commons afforded pasturage for flocks of goats
and small, white, harmless cattle.

The land is of inexhaustible fertility. The sunshine is unfailing;
drought in this moist climate is unknown; and the air is cooled and
purified by the breezes from the lake and from the mountains. Within his
own inclosure the peasant has enough and to spare for himself and his
household, both of luxuries and necessaries. His maize fields furnish
him with the staff of life, and the fermented grain yields the “pombe,”
which he regards almost as much a requisite of existence as bread itself.
The grinding of flour and the brewing of beer are all performed under
his own eye by his family. The fig-tree yields him the bark out of which
his clothes are made; but the banana is, perhaps, the most indispensable
of the gifts of nature in these climes. It supplies him, says Stanley,
with “bread, potatoes, dessert, wine, beer, medicine, house and fence,
bed, cloth, cooking-pot, table-cloth, parcel-wrapper, thread, cord, rope,
sponge, bath, shield, sun-hat, and canoe. With it, he is happy, fat, and
thriving; without it, a famished, discontented, woe-begone wretch.” The
banana grows to perfection in Uganda; groves of it embower every village,
and the Waganda in addition to being fat and prosperous have plenty of
leisure for the arts of war and peace.

They are unfortunately inclined to war, though they make cloth, tan
skins, work in metals, and build houses and canoes. Even literature is
not unknown among them. Well might Speke have said of Ripon Falls at the
outlet of the Nile, with “a wife and family, a yacht and a gun, a dog
and a rod, one might here be supremely happy and never wish to visit the
haunts of civilization again.”

Word is sent to the king of the arrival of the strangers. An escort
comes inviting them to the court. The new comer quite eclipsed the
village chiefs in the gorgeousness of his apparel. A huge plume of cock’s
feathers surmounted an elaborately worked head-dress. A crimson robe
hung about him with a grace worthy an ancient Roman, while over it was
hung a snow-white goat-skin. The progress to the headquarters of the
court was conducted with due pomp and circumstance. Every step Stanley’s
wonderment and admiration increased; each moment he received new proofs
that he had fallen among a people as different from those whom his
previous wanderings had made him acquainted with as are white Americans
from Choctaws. Emerging from the margin of dense forests and banana and
plantain groves on the lake shores, the singular beauty of the land
revealed itself to him. Wherever he turned his eyes there was a brilliant
play of colors, and a boldness and diversity of outline such as he had
never before seen. Broad, straight, and carefully-kept roads led through
a rolling, thickly-peopled country clad in perennial green. Now the
path would dive down into a hollow, where it was shaded by the graceful
fronds of plantains and other tropical trees, where a stream murmured
over the stones, and the air was filled with the fragrance of fruit; and
then again it would crest a ridge, from whence a magnificent prospect
could be obtained of the sea-like expanse of the lake, with its wooded
capes and islands, the dim blue lines of the distant hills, and the
fruitful and smiling country lying between, its soft, undulating outline
of forest-covered valley and grassy hill sharply broken by gigantic
table-topped masses of gray rocks and profound ravines.

[Illustration: RUBAGA.]

At length crowning the summit of a smooth hill appeared King Mtesa’s
capital, Rubaga. A number of tall huts clustered around one taller than
the rest from which waved the imperial standard of the Uganda. A high
cane fence surrounds the court with gates opening on four broad avenues
that stretch to the bottom of the hill. These are lined with fences and
connected with paths shaded with groves of banana, fig and other fruit
trees, and amid these groves are the houses of the commonalty. After due
delay——court etiquette is even more tedious and ceremonious in Africa
than Europe——Stanley is ushered into the presence of the king, seated in
his great audience hall, and surrounded by a host of chiefs, warriors,
pages, standard-bearers, executioners, drummers, fifers, clowns, dwarfs,
wizards, medicine men, slaves and other retainers.

And here we have a fine opportunity to compare the notes of two
observers of the king’s receptions. Stanley had a second interview at
the “royal palace,” on which occasion the king received also M. Linant
De Bellefonds, sent by Gordon Pasha on a mission to Uganda. The monarch
prepared a surprise for him by having Stanley by his side. But let De
Bellefonds speak.

“On entering the court I am greeted with a frightful uproar. A thousand
instruments produce the most discordant and deafening sounds. Mtesa’s
bodyguard, carrying guns, present arms on my appearance. The king is
standing at the entrance to the reception hall. I approach and bow like
a Turk. We shake hands. I perceive a sun-burned European by the king’s
side, whom I take to be Cameron. We all enter the reception room——a room
15 feet wide by 60 feet long, its roof supported by two rows of light
pillars, making an aisle, which is filled with chief officers and guards,
the latter armed. Mtesa takes his seat on the throne, which is like a
wooden office chair. His feet rest on a cushion. The whole is in the
centre of a leopard skin spread upon a Smyrna rug. Before him is a highly
polished elephant’s tusk, at his feet two boxes containing fetishes, on
either side a lance of copper and steel. At his feet are two scribes.
The king behaves dignifiedly and does not lack an air of distinction.
His dress is faultless——a white _couftan_ finished with a red band,
stockings, slippers, vest of black and gold, a turban with a silver plate
on top, a sword with an ivory hilt and a staff. I show my presents, but
royal dignity forbids him to show any curiosity. I say to the traveller
on his left ‘Have I the honor to address Mr. Cameron?’ He says, ‘No sir;
Mr. Stanley.’ I introduce myself. We bow low, and our conversation ends
for the moment.”

Who is this singular Mtesa and how has his more singular fabric of empire
been built up in the heart of savage Africa?

All around is the night of Pagan darkness, ignorance, and cruelty. Here,
in the land of the Waganda, if there is, as yet, no light to speak of,
there is a ruddy tinge in the midst of the blackness that seems to give
promise of approaching dawn. If the people are still blood-thirsty,
revengeful, and fond of war and pillage, they have learned some lessons
in observing law and order; they practice some useful arts; they observe
many of the decencies of life, and in the cleanliness of their houses
and persons they are examples to some European countries. The Waganda
themselves have a high opinion of their own importance; and their legends
carry back their origin to what, for an African tribe, is a remote past.
The story, as related by them to Captain Speke, is as follows:——

“Eight generations ago a sportsman from Unyoro, by name Uganda, came with
a pack of dogs, a woman, a spear, and a shield, hunting on the left bank
of the Katonga Valley, not far from the lake. He was but a poor man,
though so successful in hunting that vast numbers flocked to him for
flesh, and became so fond of him as to invite him to be their king. At
first Uganda hesitated. Then the people, hearing his name, said, ‘well
at any rate let the country between the Nile and the Katonga be called
Uganda and let your name be Kimera the first king of Uganda.’ The report
of these proceedings reached the ears of the king of Unyoro, who merely
said, ‘The poor creature must be starving, allow him to feed where he

“Kimera assumed authority, grew proud and headstrong, punished severely
and became magnificent. He was content with nothing short of the grandest
palace, a throne to sit on, the largest harem, the smartest officers, the
best dressed people, a menagerie for pleasure and the best of everything.
Armies were formed and fleets of canoes built for war. Highways were
cut from one end of the country to the other and all the rivers were
bridged. No house could be built without its necessary out buildings and
to disobey the laws of cleanliness was death. He formed a perfect system
of paternal government according to his own ideas, and it has never
declined, but rather improved.”

Stanley heard from Sabadu, the court historian of Uganda, a somewhat
different story. According to him Kimera did not found the government
but was only one of a long list of thirty-five monarchs. He however
first taught his countrymen the delight of sport. He was, in fact, the
Nimrod of Uganda genealogy, and a mighty giant to boot, the mark of
whose enormous foot is still pointed out on a rock near the lake, where
he had slipped while hurling a spear at an elephant. The first of the
Waganda was Kintu, a blameless priest, who objected to the shedding of
blood——a scruple which does not seem to have been shared by any of his
descendants——and who came into this Lake Region when it was absolutely
empty of human inhabitants. From Kintu, Sabadu traced the descent of his
master through a line of glorious ancestry,——warriors and legislators,
who performed the most astounding deeds of valor and wisdom,——and
completely proved that, whatever may be the condition of history,
fiction, at least, flourishes at the court of Mtesa. Passing over a hero
who crushed hosts of his enemies by flying up into the air and dropping
great rocks upon their heads, and a doughty champion who took his stand
on a hill and there for three days withstood the assaults of all comers,
catching the spears thrown at him and flinging them back, until he was
surrounded by a wall of two thousand slain, we come to Suna, the father
of Mtesa, who died only a little before Speke and Grant’s visit to the
country. Suna, by all accounts, was a gloomy monarch, who sat with his
eyes broodingly bent on the ground, only raising them to give the signal
to his executioners for the slaughter of some of his subjects. It is told
of this sanguinary despot that one day he caused 800 of his people to be
killed in his sight, and that he made a ghastly pyramid of the bodies
of 20,000 Wasoga prisoners, inhabitants of the opposite shore of the
Victoria Nile.

The chiefs rejected his eldest son as his successor and chose the
mild-eyed Mtesa. The “mild-eyed” signalized his election by killing all
his nearest relatives and his father’s best counsellors. He was drunk
with power and _pombe_. It was now that Speke and Grant saw him. They
describe him as a wretch who was peculiarly liable to fits of frenzy,
during which he would order the slaughter of those who were his best
friends an hour before, or arming himself with a bundle of spears would
go into his harem and throw them indiscriminately among his wives and

It is said a change came over him by being converted to Mohammedanism.
He gave up his drinking and many Pagan practices of his fathers, though
still believing in wizards and charms. The Moslem Sabbath is observed and
Arabic literature has been introduced.

Stanley describes him as a tall slim man of thirty years, with fine
intelligent features and an expression in which amiability is blended
with dignity. His eyes are “large lustrous and lambent.” His skin is
a reddish brown and wonderfully smooth. In council, he is sedate and
composed; in private, free and hilarious. Of his intelligence and
capacity there can be no question. Nor can it be doubted that he has a
sincere liking for white men. His curiosity about civilized peoples,
their customs, manufactures and inventions is insatiable, and he seems to
have once entertained the idea of modeling his kingdom after a civilized
pattern. He showed “Stamlee” (Stanley) and other white visitors the
greatest hospitality. Yet there was something cat-like in his caressing
and insinuating ways. His smiles and attentions could not be relied on
any more than the fawning of the leopard, which the kings of Uganda take
for their royal badge.

Stanley tried to convert him from his Moslem faith to Christianity. He
got so far as to have him write the Ten Commandments for daily perusal
and keep the Christian along with the Moslem Sabbath. This was on his
first visit. But on his return to Rubaga he found the king had gone to
war with the Wavuma. He went along and had excellent opportunity to
notice the king’s power.

His estimate of Mtesa’s fighting strength on this occasion was an army of
150,000 men, and as many more camp followers in the shape of women and
children. There were not less than 500 large canoes, over seventy feet in
length, requiring 8500 paddlers. The whole population of his territory he
estimated at 3,500,000, and its extent at 70,000 square miles.

The Wavuma could not muster over 200 canoes, but they were more agile on
the water than the Uganda, so that the odds were not so great after all.
Day after day they kept Mtesa’s fleet at bay, and readily paddled out
of reach of his musketry and howitzers planted on a cape which extended
into the lake. Mtesa got very mad and began to despair. He applied to
all his sorcerers and medicine men, and at length came to Stanley, who
suggested the erection of a causeway from the point of the cape to the
enemy’s shore. It proved to be too big a task, and was given over. But
the American pushed his project of converting the king, now that he
stood in the position of adviser. He succeeded, as he thought. But a few
days later the Uganda fleet suffered a reverse, and the newly fledged
Christian was found running around in a frenzy, shouting for the blood
of his enemies and giving orders for the roasting alive of a prisoner
who had been taken. Stanley gave his pupil a well-deserved scolding; and
thinking it was time to interfere in the war, which was hindering him
from continuing his journey, he put into operation a little project he
had conceived, and which is worthy of being placed beside the famous
device of the “horse” by which the Greeks captured Troy town. Joining
three canoes together, side by side, by poles lashed across them, he
constructed on this platform a kind of wicker-work fort, which concealed
a crew and garrison of two hundred men. This strange structure, covered
by streamers, and with the drums and horns giving forth a horrible din,
moved slowly towards the enemy’s stronghold, propelled by the paddles
working between the canoes. The Wavuma watched with terror the approach
of this awful apparition, which bore down upon them as if moved by some
supernatural force. When it had advanced to within hailing distance, a
voice was heard issuing from the mysterious visitant, which called on the
Wavuma to submit to Mtesa or destruction would come on them. The bold
islanders were awestruck. A council of war was held, when a chief stepped
to the shore and cried, “Return, O Spirit; the war is ended!” A peace was
sealed with the usual tribute of ivory and female slaves for the king’s

The next morning the king’s war drums suddenly sounded the breaking up
of his immense encampment on the shore, and Stanley discovered it to be
on fire in a hundred places. All had to flee for their lives, and he
thinks hundreds must have perished in the confusion. The king denied
that he was responsible for an order which resulted in such a horror,
but Stanley thought he was guilty of a piece of unwarranted cruelty,
which illy became his new profession of faith. From that time on, his
views began to change. Ingenious, enterprising, intelligent he found
them, above any other African tribe he had met with. Their scrupulous
cleanliness, neatness, and modesty cover a multitude of faults; but for
the rest, “they are crafty, fraudful, deceiving, lying, thievish knaves,
taken as a whole, and seem to be born with an uncontrollable love of
gaining wealth by robbery, violence and murder.” Notwithstanding first
impressions to the contrary, they are more allied to the Choctaw than
the Anglo-Saxon, and are simply clever savages, whom prosperity and a
favorable climate have helped several stages on the long, toilsome road
towards civilization. There is no call upon us after all to envy their
luxurious lives of ease and plenty under the shade of their bowers of
vine, fig, and plantain trees——

    “For we hold the gray Barbarian lower than the Christian child.”

Nevertheless, Uganda, from its fertility and its situation at the outlet
of the great fresh-water sea of the Nyanza, must be regarded as one of
the most hopeful fields of future commercial enterprise, and its people
as among the most promising subjects for missionary and philanthropic
efforts in Central Africa.

As for the mighty Mtesa, little has been seen or heard of him since his
friend “Stamlee” parted from him. Colonel Chaille Long, late of the
Confederate Army, afterwards in the service of Egypt, who had seen him a
few months before, did not think he would ever turn out to be a humane
monarch. But that he has not lost his interest in his white friends
and in the marvels of civilization was shown in the spring of 1880,
when a deputation of four of his chiefs appeared in London on a tour of

De Bellefonds, mentioned above as meeting Stanley at King Mtesa’s court,
was murdered, with all his party, by the Unyoro, when on his way back to
Gondokoro. Colonel Long went down the Victoria Nile from Lake Victoria
Nyanza, and midway between the Victoria and Albert Nyanza discovered
another great lake which he called Lake Ibrahim.

The last white visitors to the Nile reservoirs were an English party
sent out to establish a Christian mission on Lake Victoria Nyanza. It
consisted of Lieutenant Smith, and Messrs. Wilson and O’Neil. They took a
small steamer along in sections from Zanzibar, and successfully floated
the first steam craft on the bosom of the great lake. Wilson established
himself at the court of King Mtesa. Smith and Wilson, while exploring the
lake, were driven by a storm on the island of the Ukerewe, whose chief,
Lukongeh, had been kind to Stanley. But no faith can be put in African
princes. On December 7, 1877, Lukongeh attacked the missionary camp and
massacred Smith and Wilson with all their black attendants. With this
dismal incident the history of the exploration of Victoria Nyanza closes
for the present, except as we shall have to follow Stanley after leaving
the court of King Mtesa on his trip down the western shore of the lake.
It must be remembered that he was twice to see the king, once on his tour
of circumnavigation, and then after he had completed it.

After he rounded the northern end of the lake and was well on his way
down its western shores, he met with the most perilous of his adventures.
The voyagers were nearly out of provisions. They had passed days of
weary toil under the blistering tropical sun, and dismal nights of
hunger on shelterless, uninhabited islands, when the grassy slopes of
Bumbireh hove in sight. Numerous villages were seen in the shelter of the
forest, with herds of cattle, maize fields, and groves of fruit trees,
and altogether the island seemed to offer a haven of rest and plenty to
the weary mariners. There was no food left in the boat, and a landing
had to be attempted at all risks. The look of the Bumbireh natives was
not so prepossessing as that of their land. They rushed down from their
villages, shouting war-songs and brandishing their clubs and spears. No
sooner had the boat reached shallow water, than they seized upon her, and
dragged her, crew and all, high up on the rocky beach. “The scene that
ensued,” says the traveller, “baffles description. Pandemonium——all the
devils armed——raged around us. A forest of spears was levelled; thirty
or forty bows were drawn taut; as many barbed arrows seemed already on
the wing; knotty clubs waved above our heads; two hundred screaming black
demons jostled each other, and struggled for room to vent their fury, or
for an opportunity to deliver one crushing blow or thrust at us.”

In point of fact, no thrust was delivered, and possibly none was
intended; but the situation was certainly an unpleasant one. The troop of
gesticulating, yelling savages increased every second; and the diabolical
noise of a number of drums increased the hub-bub. The islanders began to
jostle their guests, to pilfer, and at last they seized upon the oars.
Stanley put his companions on their guard and fired his double-barreled
elephant rifle into the crowd. Two men fell. He increased the panic
among them, by two rounds of duck shot, and in the midst of the confusion
the “Lady Alice” was run down the bank and pushed far into the water. But
this scarcely improved the position. The enemy swarmed on the shore and
threw stones and lances at the crew. Canoes were making ready to pursue.
Stanley ordered the crew to tear up the bottom boards for paddles and to
pull away with all their might. All were doing the best they could, but
a paralysis seized them when they discovered they were directly in the
track of two huge hippopotami which had been started up by the noises of
the melee, and enraged to the attacking point. The elephant rifle was
again brought into requisition and the course cleared by planting an
explosive bullet in each animal’s head.

Four of the canoes of the natives were now upon them. They meant war
in earnest. The elephant rifle was used with effect. Four shots killed
five of the natives and sank two canoes. The other two stopped to pick
up their companions. They shouted in their rage, as they saw their prize
escape, “go, and die in the Nyanza!”

Dismal days of famine and hardship followed. A storm overtook them
and tossed them for hours, drenched with spray and rain. They had but
four bananas on board. Happily another island was sighted and reached,
which proved to be uninhabited. There they obtained food, shelter and
much needed rest. Most travellers would have given Bumbireh a wide
berth in the future. Not so Stanley. He pursued his course to Kagehyi,
his starting point, having circumnavigated the lake in 60 days. There
he assembled his own forces, and added recruits loaned by King Mtesa.
With 230 spearmen and 50 musketeers he put back to the offending island
determined to punish the two or three thousand natives they found ranged
along the shores. They held their own with slings and arrows against the
approach of the boats for an hour. But at length they were put to flight
and Stanley considered he had wiped out the insult, though they appear to
have been pretty well punished before.

During his two months’ absence Frederick Barker died at Kagehyi. This
sad event was one of the items of heavy cost attending great feats of
exploration. It left Stanley with but one English companion.

Stanley’s exploration of Victoria Nyanza confirmed in part, Speke’s
discovery and theories. It showed that it was a Nile reservoir, though
not an ultimate source, 21,000 square miles in extent. Excellent havens,
navigable streams and fertile islands were revealed for the first time.
Rich and beautiful countries are romantically pictured to us.

After having paid court to King Mtesa a second time, as already
described, the time came for Stanley to extend his journey. He chose
to follow the line of the Equator westward with the hope of striking a
southern extension of Baker’s Albert Nyanza. He departed from Mtesa’s
old capital, Ulagalla, laden with presents and food, and accompanied
by a hundred Uganda warriors. Stanley, in turn, gave bountiful parting
presents, and even remembered the chief Lukongeh of Ukerewë, who showed
his appreciation of this kindness by murdering the very next white
visitors——Smith and O’Neill, as above narrated.

Further on, near the boundary between Uganda and Unyoro, a body of
2000 Waganda spearmen joined Stanley, making a force of nearly 3000
souls——quite too large for practical exploration as the sequel proved.
The path led through scenes of surpassing beauty and fertility, and
of a character that changed from soft tropical luxuriance to Alpine

After getting away from the forest covered lowlands of the lake shore,
they emerge into a rolling country dotted with ant hills and thinly
sprinkled with tamarisks and thorny acacias. Then come rougher ways and
wilder scenes. The land-swells are higher, the valleys deeper. Rocks
break through the surface, and the slopes are covered with splintered
granite. The streams that were warm and sluggish, are now cold and rapid.
By and by mountains set in, at first detached masses and then clearly
defined ranges, rising 9000 to 10,000 feet on the right hand and the
left. Cutting breezes and chilly mists take the place of intense tropical
heats. At length the monarch of mountains in this part of Africa comes
into view and is named Mount Gordon Bennett. It lifts its head, at a
distance of 40 miles north of their route, to a height of 15,000 feet,
and seems to be a detached mass which overlooks the entire country.
Its bases are inhabited by the Gambaragara, who have regular features,
light complexions, and are the finest natives Mr. Stanley saw in Africa.
Sight of them brought up the old question, whether an indigenous white
race exists in Africa, as both Pinto and Livingstone seemed inclined to
believe. But their wooly, or curly, hair was against them. They are a
pastoral people and safe in their mountain fastnesses against attack.
Snow often covered the top of their high mountain, which they said was
an extinct crater and now the bed of a beautiful lake from whose centre
rises a lofty column of rocks. The whole country is filled with hot
springs, lakes of bubbling mud and other evidences of volcanic action.

These mountains Stanley thought to be the dividing ridge between Victoria
Nyanza, 120 miles east, and the southern projection of Albert Nyanza.
But what was his astonishment to find that he had no sooner rose to the
summit of his dividing ridge than he stood on a precipice, 1500 feet
high, which overlooked the placid waters of the traditional Muta, or
Luta, Nzigé. What a prize was here in store for the venturesome American!
Something indeed which would rob Baker of his claim to the discovery of
an ultimate Nile source in Albert Nyanza. Something which would set at
rest many geographic controversies. And, strange to say, something which
not only supported the truth of native accounts but seemed to verify the
accuracy of an old Portuguese map dating back nearly 300 years.

But fortune was not in favor of the American. His large force had scared
the Unyoro people, and they had mysteriously disappeared. The Waganda
warriors, who formed his escort, looked ominously on this situation.
Samboozi, the leader of the escort, had gained his laurels fighting the
Unyoro, and he feared a trap of some kind was being laid for him. His
fears demoralized his own men and Stanley’s as well. They decided to
retreat. Stanley remonstrated, and asked them to remain till he could
lower his boat and explore the lake. He asked for but two days grace. But
expostulation was vain. They would all have deserted in a body.

There was nothing left but to return. When they arrived at Mtesa’s
capital, which they did without accident, the king was frightfully mad
at his men. He ordered the faithless Samboozi to be imprisoned and all
his wives and flocks to be confiscated. Then he offered Stanley his great
general Sekebobo with an army of a hundred thousand men to carry him back
to the Muta Nzigé. Stanley declined his munificent offer, and determined
that in the future none should guide and govern his own force except
himself. So, with very much modified impressions of Uganda faithfulness,
and somewhat angrily, he started off in a southerly direction, intending
to see what lay westward of Victoria Nyanza.

This route of Stanley southward was that of Speke and Grant northward,
fourteen years before. It is a well watered, thickly peopled, highly
cultivated country, diversified by hill and hollow, and rich in cattle.
Its water courses all drain into the Victoria Nyanza. Their heads are
rushing streams, but as they approach the lake they become reedy,
stagnant lakelets hard to cross. The largest of these, at the southwest
corner of Victoria Nyanza, is Speke’s Kitangule, which Stanley named the
Alexandra Nile. Will we never have done with these Nile rivers? These
continuations of the great river of Egypt?

It seems then that Victoria Nyanza is but a resting place for more
southern Nile waters. That this is so, seems clear from the fact that the
Alexandra Nile really contributes more water than flows out of the lake
at its northern outlet. It has been discovered also that Albert Nyanza
sends off another affluent to the north, besides that which flows past
Gondokoro and which has been regarded as the true Nile. Further it seems
that Lake Ibrahim, half way between Victoria and Albert Nyanza, on the
Victoria Nile, dispatches an unknown branch into the wilderness. Whether
these branches find their way back to the parent stream or go off to form
new lakes, no one can exactly say.

But in the Alexandra Nile Stanley claims he has discovered a new
ramification of this wonderful river system leading to other lakes and
lake mysteries. The natives call the Alexandra the “Mother of the waters
of Uganda,” that is, the Victoria Nyanza or Victoria Nile. Be this as it
may, the Alexandra Nile is interesting both for its own sake and that of
the people who live upon it. Stanley struck it far up from the lake where
it was a quarter of a mile wide, with a dark central current 100 yards
wide and fifty feet deep, which below became a rush covered stream whose
banks were crowded with villages and herds of cattle. Still further on,
it narrows between rocks over which it rushes in a cataract, and then it
broadens to lake proportions, being from four to fifteen miles wide. In
this expanse of reedy lagoons and green islands it merges into Victoria
Nyanza Lake.

Crossing the Alexandra Nile to the south, we are in the Karagwe country,
ruled by King Rumanika. Here is a haven of peace and rest. Speke and
Grant staid many weeks with Rumanika. Stanley stopped for a considerable
while to rest and recruit. He is gentle and reasonable, hospitable and
friendly. He is a vassal of King Mtesa of Uganda, but the two are wholly
different, except in their admiration of white men. Rumanika has no
bursts of temper, but is serene, soft of voice and placid in manner.
Stanley calls him a “venerable and aged Pagan,” a tall man, six feet six
inches high, gorgeously dressed, attended by a multitude of spearmen,
drummers and fifers, bearing a cane seven feet long. He has a museum in
which he delights, and is an insatiable gatherer of news from those who
come from civilized countries. He is not to be outdone by the stories of
strangers, but has always one in response ever fuller of marvel. When
Stanley told him of the results of steam power and of the telegraph by
which people could talk for thousands of miles, he slily asked “Whether
or not the moon made different faces to laugh at us mortals on earth?”

He proved full of traditions and, if there was any foundation for
them, Stanley left with a rare fund of geographic knowledge on hand.
The mountain sixty miles northward, rising in triple cone and called
M’Fumbiro, he said was in the country of the Ruanda, a powerful state
governed by an empress, who allows no stranger to enter. Her dominions
stretch from the Muta Nzigé to Tanganyika. They contain another great
lake, forty by thirty miles, out of which the Alexandra Nile flows. It is
possible to ascend this channel into another sheet of water——Lake Kivu,
out of which at its southern end flows another stream, the Rusizi, which
flows into the north end of Tanganyika.

What wonderful information this was, and if all true, we should have
the most bewildering river system, by all odds in the world. We should
find the old Portuguese map of three hundred years ago reproduced and
verified, and the anomaly of three mighty streams draining a continent
mingling their parent waters, and even permitting the passage of a boat
at high water, so that in the end it might go to the Mediterranean, the
Atlantic or Indian Oceans.

Further, Rumanika stated that Ruanda is peopled by demons, and that
beyond, on a lake called Mkinyaga, are a race of cannibals, and also
pigmies, not two feet high. Stanley verified the king’s story by a visit
to the Ruanda folks, who gnashed their teeth like dogs and otherwise
expressed their objections to his visit; and Dr. Schweinfurth found, a
little nearer the western coast, evidences of a tribe of dwarfs who are
supposed to be the aboriginal people of the continent. But the hardest of
Rumanika’s stories was of a tribe who had ears so long that one answered
for a blanket to lie on and another as a cover for the sleeper. Stanley
began to think his civilized wonders were too tame to pit against those
of the African king.

The larger African animals abound in the Karagwe country. Stanley was
much interested in the accounts of white elephants and rhinoceri. He had
the good fortune to find one of the former animals, which he shot, but
found it only a dirty grey brute, just as we find the advertised white
elephants of the menagerie. The elephant is the most unpleasant neighbor
of the rhinoceros. If they meet in a jungle the rhinoceros has to squeeze
his ponderous body into the thicket or prepare for a battle royal. In
such a quarrel his tusk is an ugly weapon but no match for the tusks of
the elephant. The elephant sometimes treats him like a school boy and,
breaking off a limb, belabors the unlucky rhinoceros till he beats a
retreat. At other times the elephant will force him against a tree and
pin him there with his tusks, or throw him down and tramp him till the
life is out of him. Perhaps these were more of Rumanika’s yarns, but
certain it is both beasts are formidable in a forest path, especially
when alone and of surly temper.


On the southern borders of Karagwe is a ridge 5000 feet high. Beyond this
the waters trend southward and toward Tanganyika. And beyond this ridge
the people change. There are no more stately kings, but petty, lying,
black-mailing chiefs, just as we found about Gondokoro. Here Stanley
encountered Mirambo, whose name is a word of terror from the Victoria
Lake to the Nyassa, and from Tanganyika to Zanzibar. To the explorer’s
astonishment he found this notorious personage——

      “The mildest-mannered man
      That ever cut a throat”——

in short “a thorough African gentleman.”

He had difficulty in believing that this “unpresuming, mild-eyed man, of
inoffensive exterior, so calm of gesture, so generous and open-handed,”
was the terrible man of blood who wasted villages, slaughtered his foes
by the thousand, and kept a district of ninety thousand square miles in
continual terror. Incontinently, the impulsive explorer resolved to swear
“blood brother-hood” with the other wandering warrior, and the ceremony
was gone through with all due solemnity. The marauding chief presented
his new brother with a quantity of cloth, and the explorer gave him
in return a revolver and a quantity of ammunition; and then, mutually
pleased with each other, they parted——Mirambo and his merry men to the
gay greenwood, where, doubtless, they had a pressing engagement to meet
some other party of travellers, and Stanley for Ujiji.

Ujiji is on Lake Tanganyika. Here we have to leave Stanley, for he is
now done with the sources of the Nile, and midway on that wonderful
journey which revealed the secrets of the Congo. We will follow him
thence and see what he discovered and how he lifted the fog amid which
Livingstone died, but that will have to be under the head of the “Congo
Country” whose mystery he solved more clearly even than that of the “Nile


                              THE ZAMBESI.

The great river Zambesi runs eastward across Southern Africa and empties,
by many mouths, into the Indian Ocean. It is an immense water system,
with its head far toward the Atlantic Ocean, yet draining on its north
side that mysterious lake region which occupies Central Africa, and on
its south side an almost equally mysterious region.

Its lower waters have been known for a long time, but its middle waters
and its sources have been shrouded in a cloud of doubts as dense as that
which overhung the reservoirs of the Nile. Livingstone has contributed
more than any other explorer to the lifting of these doubts.

He was born in Glasgow, March 19, 1813, and was self-educated. He studied
medicine and became attached to the London Missionary Society as medical
missionary. In 1840, at the age of twenty-seven years, he was sent to
Cape Town at the southern terminus of Africa, whence he went 700 miles
inland to the Kuruman Station, established by Moffat on the southern
border of the Kalihari desert. Here and at Kolobeng, on the Kolobeng
River, he acquired the language of the natives, principally Bechuana. On
a return trip from Kolobeng to Kuruman he came near losing his life by
an adventure with a lion. The country was being ravaged by a troop of
these beasts. When one of their number is killed, the rest take the hint
and leave. It was determined to dispatch one, and a hunt was organized
in company with the natives. They found the troop on a conical hill.
The hunters formed a circle around the hill and gradually closed in.
Meblawe, a native schoolmaster, fired at one of the animals which was
sitting on a rock. The bullet struck the rock. The angered beast bit the
spot where the bullet struck and then bounded away. In a few moments
Livingstone himself got a shot at another beast. The ball took effect but
did not kill. The enraged beast dashed at his assailant before he could
re-load, and sprang upon him. He was borne to the ground beneath the
lion’s paws and felt his hot breath on his face. Another moment must have
brought death. But the infuriated beast saw Mebalwe, who had snapped both
barrels of his rifle at him. He made a dash for him and lacerated his
thigh in a terrible manner. The natives, who had hitherto acted in a very
cowardly manner, now came to the rescue with their spears. One of their
number was pounced upon and badly torn. The beast now began to weaken
from the effect of Livingstone’s shot, and with a quiver throughout his
huge frame rolled over on his side dead. After the excitement was over
Dr. Livingstone found eleven marks of the lion’s teeth on his left
arm, which was broken close to the shoulder and the bone crushed into


Livingstone married Moffat’s daughter in 1844. She had been born in the
country and was a thorough missionary. He made Kolobeng a beautiful
station and produced an excellent impression on the natives——all except
the Boer tribes to the south and east, who had become much incensed
against the English, owing as they thought, to the particularly harsh
treatment they had received down in their former homes south of the Vaal

At Kolobeng, Livingstone first heard of Lake Ngami, north of the Kalihari
Desert. He resolved to visit it, and started in May 1849, in company
with his wife and children, several English travellers and a large party
of Bechuana attendants. They rather skirted than crossed the desert,
yet they found it to consist of vast salt plains, which gave a constant
mirage as if the whole were water. Though destitute of water, there are
tufts of dry salt-encrusted grass here and there, which relieve it of an
appearance of barrenness, but which crumble at the touch.

In July they struck the river Cubango, or Zonga, flowing eastward and,
as far as known, losing itself in a great central salt-lake, or Dead
Sea. They were told that the Zonga came out of Lake Ngami, further west.
Ascending the river sixty miles they struck the lake, and were the first
Europeans to behold this fine sheet of water. The great tribe about and
beyond the lake is the Makololo, whose chief is Sebituane, a generous
hearted and truly noble character. They could not see him on this trip.
So they returned, making easy journeys down the Zonga, admiring its
beautiful banks, which abounded in large game, especially elephants.

The next year (1850), Livingstone and his family started again for Lake
Ngami, accompanied by the good chief Sechele, who took along a wagon,
drawn by oxen. While this means of locomotion gave comfort to the family,
it involved much labor in clearing roads, and the animals suffered sadly
from attacks by the tsetse fly, whose sting is poisonous. But the lake
was reached in safety. The season proved sickly, and a return journey
became compulsory, without seeing Sebituane. But the chief had heard
of Livingstone’s attempts to visit his court, and he sent presents, and
invitations to another visit. He set out on a third journey, and this
time directly across the desert, where they suffered much for want of

[Illustration: CUTTING A ROAD.]

This time they found the chief. His headquarters were on an island in the
river, below the lake. He received the party with the greatest courtesy,
and appeared to be the best mannered and frankest chief Livingstone ever
met. He was about forty-five years old, tall and wiry, of coffee-and-milk
complexion, slightly bald, of undoubted bravery, always leading his men
in battle, and by far the most powerful warrior beyond Cape Colony. He
had reduced tribe after tribe, till his dominions extended far into the
desert on the south of the Zonga, embraced both sides of that stream, and
ran northward to, and beyond, the great Zambesi River.

Chief Sebituane died while Livingstone was visiting him, and was
succeeded by his daughter Ma-Mochisane. She extended the privileges of
the country to the travellers, and Livingstone went north to Sesheke
to see her. Here in June, 1851, he discovered the great Zambesi in the
centre of the continent of Africa where it was not previously known to
exist——all former maps being incorrect.

Though the country was not healthy, he was so impressed with the beauty
of the Zambesi regions, and the character of the Makololo people, that he
resolved to make a permanent establishment among them. But before doing
so he returned to Cape Colony and sent his family to England. Then he
went back, visiting his old stations on the way. He arrived at Linyanti,
where he found that the new queen had abdicated in favor of her brother,
on May 23, 1853. The new king Sekelutu was not unlike his father in
stature and color, was kindly disposed toward white people, but could not
be convinced that their religious notions were suited to him.

Livingstone remained a month at Linyanti, on the Chobe, or Cuando River,
above its junction with the Zambezi. He then started on a further
exploration of the latter river, and was gratified to find that Sekelutu
determined to accompany him with 160 attendants. They made royal progress
down the Chobe to its mouth. Then they began to ascend the Zambesi in
thirty-three canoes. The river was more than a mile broad, dotted with
large islands and broken with frequent rapids and falls. The banks were
thickly strewn with villages. Elephants were numerous. It was the new
king’s first visit to his people and everywhere the receptions were
grand. Throughout this Barotse valley hunger is not known, yet there is
no care exercised in planting.

The spirit of exploration had such full possession of Livingstone
that, on the return of the royal party to Linyanti, he organized an
expedition to ascend the Zambesi and cut across to Loanda on the Atlantic
coast. This he did in 1854. It was on this journey that he discovered
Lake Dilolo. It is not much of a lake, being only eight miles long by
three broad. But it was a puzzle to Livingstone, and has ever since
been a curiosity. It is the connecting link between two immense water
systems——that of the Congo and Zambesi.

When he struck it on his westward journey toward Loanda, he found it
sending out a volume into the Zambesi. “Head-waters of a great river!”
he naturally exclaimed. And there was the elevation above the sea, the
watershed, to prove it, for soon after all the waters ran northward and
westward instead of eastward and southward.

But in a few months he was making his return journey from Loanda to the
interior, to fulfil his pledge to bring back his Makololo attendants
in safety. He then approached this lake from the north. What was his
surprise to find another slow moving, reed-covered stream a mile wide,
flowing from this end of the mysterious lake and sending its waters
toward the Congo.

Though ill with fever both times, he was able to conquer disease
sufficiently to satisfy himself that this little lake, Dilolo, four
thousand feet above the sea level, is located exactly on the watershed
between the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, and distributes its contents
impartially between the two seas. A drop of rain blown by the wind to the
one or the other end of the lake may re-enforce the tumbling floods that
roar through the channels of the Congo and rush sixty miles out into the
salt waters of the Atlantic, or may make with the Zambesi the dizzy leap
through the great Victoria Falls and mingle with the Indian ocean. No
similar phenomenon is known anywhere. Lake Kivo may form a corresponding
band of union between the Congo and the Nile, but this we do not know.
Apart from the eccentric double part it plays, the physical features
of Dilolo are tame and ordinary enough. It has, of course, hippopotami
and crocodiles as every water in Central Africa has, and its banks
are fringed with marshes covered with profuse growth of rushes, cane,
papyrus, and reeds. Around it stretch wide plains, limitless as the sea,
on which for many months of the year the stagnant waters rest, balancing
themselves, as it were, between the two sides of a continent, unable to
make up their mind whether to favor the east coast or the west with their

No trees break the horizon. The lands in the fens bear only a low growth
of shrub, and the landscape is dismal and monotonous in the extreme.
“Dilolo means despair,” and the dwellers near it tell a story curiously
resembling the tale of the “Cities of the plain,” and the tradition
handed down regarding some of the lakes in Central Asia, of how a
venerable wanderer came to this spot near evening and begged for the
charity of shelter and food, how the churlish inhabitants mocked his
petition, with the exception of one poor man who gave the stranger a nook
by his fire and the best his hut afforded, and how after a terrible night
of tempest and lightning the hospitable villager found his guest gone and
the site of his neighbor’s dwellings occupied by a lake. When the rains
have ceased and the hot sun has dried up the moisture the outlook is
more cheerful. A bright golden band of flowers of every shade of yellow
stretches across the path, then succeeds a stripe of blue, varying from
the lightest tint to purple, and so band follows band with the regularity
of the stripes on a zebra.

The explorer is glad, however, to escape these splendid watersheds and
to pass down into the shadows of the forests of the Zambesi, where, at
least, there will be a change of discomforts, and a variety of scenery.
There are four methods of travel familiar in Southern Africa. One is the
bullock-wagon, convenient and pleasant enough in the Southern Plains,
but hardly practicable in the rude wilderness adjoining the Zambesi.
Riding on bullock back is a mode of travel which Livingstone frequently
adopted from sheer inability to walk from weakness. Marching on foot is,
of course, the best of all plans when a thorough and minute acquaintance
with the district traversed is desired. But for ease and rapid progress
there is nothing like “paddling your own canoe,” or better still, having
it paddled for you by skilled boatmen down the deep gorges and through
the rushing shallows of the third of the great African rivers. Before the
main stream of the Zambesi is reached, the forest shadows of the Lotembwa
and the Leeba have to be threaded. These dark moss-covered rivers flow
between dripping banks of overgrown forests and jungle with frequent
clearings, where the villagers raise their crops of manihoc, the plant
that yields the tapioco of commerce, and which here furnishes the chief
food of the natives.

Fetisch worship flourishes in these dark and gloomy woods. In their
depths a fantastically carved demon face, staring from a tree, will
often startle the intruder, or a grotesque representation of a lion or
crocodile, or of the human face made of rushes, plastered over with
clay and with shells or beads for eyes, will be found perched in a seat
of honor with offerings of food and ornaments laid on the rude altar.
Whether human sacrifices are offered at these shrines cannot positively
be said, but the most simple and trifling acts are “tabooed,” and unless
the traveller is exceedingly wary in all that he does or says, he is
likely to be met with heavy fines or looked upon as a cursed man, who
will bring misfortune on all who aid or approach him. The medicine man
has a terrible power which he often exercises over the lives and property
of his fellows, and a sentence of witchcraft is often followed by death.
A great source of profit is weather-making but, unlike the prophets in
the arid deserts on the south, the magicians of this moist, cool region
devote their energies to keeping off rain and not to bringing it down
from Heaven. Of course if they persevere long enough the rain ceases to
fall, and the credulous natives believe that this has been produced by
the medicine they have purchased so dearly, just as the Bechuana of the
desert believe in the ability of their rain-makers, when handsomely paid,
to bring showers down on the thirsty ground by virtue of drumming and

[Illustration: A BANYAN TREE.]

The behavior of the inhabitants of these villages, on the appearance
among them of a white man, is apt to shake the notion of the latter that
the superior good looks of his own race are universally acknowledged.
Their standard of beauty is quite different from ours. Sometimes a wife
is measured by the number of pounds she weighs, sometimes by her color,
often by the peculiarities of ornamentation, or by special style of
head-dress or some disfigurement of the nose, lips or ears, on which
the female population mainly rely for making themselves attractive.
The wearing of clothes is regarded as a practice fairly provocative
of laughter, and as improper as the want of them would be in America.
Nothing could be more hideous to them than the long hair, shaggy beard
and whiskers, like the mane of a lion, which strangers wear. If the
stranger have blue eyes and red whiskers he is regarded as a hob-goblin,
before whom the village girls run away screaming with terror, and the
children hide trembling behind their mothers. At the village of the
Shinte, the principal tribe on the Leeba River, Livingstone was very
kindly treated by the chief. He received him seated in state under
the shade of a banyan tree, with his hundred wives seated behind him,
and his band of drummers performing in front. Out of gratitude, the
Doctor treated the distinguished party to an entertainment with the
magic-lantern. The subject was the death of Isaac, and the party looked
on with awe as the gigantic figures with flowing Oriental robes,
prominent noses, and ruddy complexions appeared upon the curtain. But
when the Patriarch’s up-lifted arm, with the dagger in hand, was seen
descending, the ladies, fancying that it was about to be sheathed in
their bosoms instead of Isaac’s, sprang to their feet with shouts of
“Mother! Mother!” and rushed helter-skelter, tumbling pell-mell after
each other into corners or out into the open air, and it was impossible
to bring them back to witness the Patriarch’s subsequent fortunes.

On the lower part of the Leeba the scenery becomes very beautiful
and richly diversified. The alternation of hill and dale, open glade
and forest, past which the canoe bears us swiftly, reminds one of a
carefully kept park. Animal life becomes more plentiful with every mile
of southward progress, and the broad meadows bordering the stream are
pastured by great herds of wild animals——buffaloes, antelopes, zebras,
elephants, and rhinoceri,——all of which may be slaughtered in scores
before they take alarm.

Below the confluence of the Leeba with the Zambesi, the abundance of game
on the banks of the river is more remarkable. The air is found darkened
by the flight of innumerable water fowl, fish-hawks, cranes, and waders
of many varieties. The earth teems with insect life and the waters swarm
with fish life. As an instance of the prodigious quantity and exceeding
tameness of wild animals here, Livingstone mentions that “eighty-one
buffaloes marched in slow procession before our fire one evening within
gun shot, and herds of splendid deer sat by day without fear at two
hundred yards distance, while all through the night the lions were heard
roaring close to the camp.” In the heat of the day sleek elands, tall as
ordinary horses, with black glossy bodies and delicately striped skins,
browsed or reclined in the shade of the forest trees. Troops of graceful,
agile antelopes, of similar species, scour across the pasture lands to
seek the cool retreat of some deep dell in the woods, or a solitary
rhinoceros comes grunting down to the bank in search of some soft place
where he can roll his horny hide in the mud. The trees themselves have a
variety and beauty which the sombre evergreen foliage of higher latitudes
lacks, and which is equally wanting in the dust colored groves of the
desert further south.

The voyage down the stream is by no means without incident. The river
swarms with hippopotami and crocodiles. The former lead a lazy sleepy
life by day in the bottom of the stream, coming now and then to the
surface to breathe and exchange a snort of recognition with their
acquaintances, and are only too well pleased to let the passer by go in
peace, if he will but let them alone. In districts where they are hunted,
they are wary and take care to push no more than the tip of their snouts
out of the water, or lie in some bed of rushes where they breathe so
softly that they cannot be heard. But in a place where they have not been
disturbed, they can be seen swimming about, and sometimes the female
hippopotamus can be seen with the little figure of her calf floating on
her neck. Certain elderly males who are expelled from the herd become
soured in temper and are dangerous to encounter, and so also is a mother
if robbed of her young. Such a one made an attack on Livingstone’s boat,
when descending the Zambesi in 1855, butting it from beneath until the
fore end stood out of water, and throwing one of the natives into the
stream. By diving and holding on to the grass at the bottom, while the
angry beast was looking for him on the surface, he escaped its vengeance
and, the boat being fortunately close to the shore, the rest of the
crew got off unharmed. The alligators of this part of the Zambesi are
peculiarly rapacious and aggressive, and the chances are that anybody
unlucky enough to fall into the river will find his way into the mouth
of a watchful crocodile. Every year these ferocious reptiles carry off
hundreds of human victims, chiefly women, while filling their water
jars, or men whose canoes are accidently upset, and the inhabitants in
their turn make a prey of the beast, being extremely fond of its flesh
and eggs. The crocodile attacks by surprise. He lurks behind the bank of
rushes, or lies in wait at the bottom of a pool, and dashes out as soon
as he sees a human limb in the water. Sometimes, however, when hungry
and where favorable opportunity occurs, he will haul his body ashore and
waddle up the bank on his stumpy legs. If, while disporting himself on
shore, his wicked green eyes fall on some likely victim in the stream, he
will dash rapidly through the rushes, plunge into the river and make a
bound for his prey. The young crocodiles show their vicious temper almost
as soon as they are out of the shell, and one savage little wretch about
two feet long made a snap at Dr. Livingstone’s legs, while walking along
the side of a stream in the Zambesi region, that made the explorer jump
aside with more agility than dignity.


Some distance below the junction of the Leeba, the Zambesi enters the
valley of the Barotse. This is one of the most fertile, yet the most
unhealthy, districts in the interior of Africa. It is stocked with great
herds of domestic cattle of two varieties. One very tall with enormous
horns, nearly nine feet between the tips, and the other a beautifully
formed little white breed. The country could grow grain enough to support
ten times the inhabitants it has at present. Like the lower valley of
the Nile, the Barotse country is inundated every year, over its whole
surface, by the waters of the river, which deposit a layer of fertilizing
slime. The banks of the Zambesi, for some distance above and below this
district, are high and cliffy, presenting ridge after ridge of fine rock
and pleasing scenery, while the stream runs swiftly over its stony bed.
For a hundred miles through the Barotse valley the stream has a deep and
winding course and the hills withdraw to a distance of fifteen miles from
either bank. To the foot of these hills the waters extend in flood time,
and the valley becomes temporarily one of the lake regions of Central

At the lower end of the valley the rocky spurs again approach each
other, and the river forces its way through a narrow defile in which, in
flood time, the water rises to a height of sixty feet above its original
level. Here are situated the Gonye Falls which are a serious impediment
to the navigation of the Upper Zambesi. But there is no such danger
or difficulty here for canoes as poor Stanley met with on the Congo.
Practice has made the natives, living near the falls, experts in the
work of transporting these canoes over the rocky ground and, as soon as
a boat approaches the rapids from above or below, it is whisked without
difficulty by a pair of sturdy arms to the quiet water beyond. Below the
Gonye Falls, the water bounds and rolls and bounces from bank to bank
and chafes over the boulders in an alarming manner, their breadth being
contracted to a few hundred yards. But these swollen rapids might all be
ascended, Livingstone thinks, when the river is full. After many leagues
of this mad gamboling, the Zambesi settles down again for a hundred miles
to sober flow, and opens out into a magnificent navigable river a mile or
two from bank to bank.

[Illustration: THE GONYE FALLS.]

Still more grand, however, are its dimensions after it receives a great
deep, dark colored, slow flowing river, the Cuando, or Chobe, before
mentioned. The Chobe empties through several mouths with winding channels
fringed with beds of papyrus, the stems of which are plaited and woven
together into an almost solid mass of vines, and by grass with keen,
sharp, serrated edges, which cut like razors. Even the hippopotamus has
no little ado in forcing a way through this forest, and less weighty
personages have to walk humbly in his track. So wide is the Zambesi below
the entrance of the Chobe, that even the practiced native eye cannot
tell from the bank whether the land, dimly seen beyond, is an island or
opposite shore, and the stream flows placidly past with no sign that it
is almost within sight of a tremendous downfall.

The only traveller who has explored the upper waters of the Chobe is
Major Serpa Pinto, on his recent journey from Benguela to Natal. But we
shall learn more of his travels hereafter. It is, however, interesting
now to note that he found a spot on this river also, where he could
almost have placed his cap on the point of junction between streams
draining toward the Atlantic, the Zambesi, the Indian Ocean, and the
Kalihari Desert.

Livingstone has already made us familiar with Lake Ngami and the banks
of the lower Cuando. These are the furthest outposts of equatorial
moisture toward the south, just as Lake Chad and the White Nile mark its
northern limits. Once, it is supposed——and indeed the fact seems beyond
dispute——the Zambesi, and all its upper branches, flowed down into this
southern basin and formed a goodly inland sea, until some great cataclysm
happened, that diverted it and its waters toward the eastern coast,
leaving the central lake to be dried up into the shallow Ngami, and the
streams of this region to wander about haphazard and uncertain whether to
keep in the old tracks or follow in the new direction.


The discovery of the Cuando River by Livingstone in 1849 demolished the
theory of a burning desert occupying the interior of Africa from the
Mediterranean to the Cape, and went far to prove, what has since been
completely established, that the fabulous torrid zone of Africa, and its
burning sands, is a well watered region, resembling North America in its
mountains and lakes, and India in its hot humid plains, thick jungles,
and cool highlands. We have already seen that the South African desert
is not without vegetation, but its pride and glory are herds of big and
small game——antelopes, gnues, zebras, ostriches, elands, gemsbocks,
gazelles, various species of deer——that roam over its spacious plains.
Great deeds of slaughter have been done with the rifle, and told over and
over again in many a stirring book of African sport by Gunning, Anderson,
and other Nimrods, who were among the first of the army of hunters who
now annually go in search of hides, tusks, and horns, which every year
become more difficult to obtain. The lion is practically the only animal
of the cat tribe which they have to encounter, the tiger being unknown
in Africa, and the leopard comparatively rare. The lion seem to be more
at home in these salt deserts than in the rank forests further north,
probably because he finds food more plentiful. Livingstone had no great
opinion of this beast. He describes him as “about the size of a donkey
and only brave at roaring,” even the talk of his majestic roar he regards
as “majestic twaddle,” and he says he could never tell the voice of the
lion from the voice of an ostrich, except from knowing that the quadruped
made a noise by night and the bird by day. The lion would never dream of
putting himself against a noble elephant, though he will tear an elephant
calf if he finds one unprotected, and he would still less engage in a
contest with the thick skinned rhinoceros. Even a buffalo is more than a
match for the “King of Beasts.” Major Oswald once came across three lions
who were having much trouble in pulling a mortally wounded buffalo to the

Both the elephant and rhinoceros are hunted here by the natives with
packs of dogs. The yelping curs completely bewilder their heavy game,
and while he is paying attention to them and making attempts to kill
them, the native creeps up and plants his bullet or poisoned spear in a
vital spot. English sportsmen prefer to go out against the elephant on
foot or on horseback or, as Anderson, upon the back of a trained ox. In
former times as many as twenty have been killed on a single excursion.
The chase of the huge animal, which attains a maximum height of twelve
feet on the Zambesi, becomes really exciting and dangerous work, for the
African variety, owing to the formation of its skull, cannot be brought
down by a forehead shot like the Indian variety. The giraffe and ostrich
are also hunted on horseback, and the plan adopted by hunters is to press
them at a hard gallop from the first, which causes them to lose their
wind and sometimes to drop dead from excitement. The ostrich, when at the
top of his speed, has been known to run at the rate of thirty miles an
hour, so that there is no hope of overtaking him in a direct chase, but
the stupid bird often delivers itself into the hands of its pursuers by
running in curves instead of speeding straight ahead.

The people of the Kalihari Desert are as characteristic of the soil and
climate as its vegetable life and four-footed beasts. They are of two
kinds, first Bushmen, who are true sons of the wilderness, wild men
of the desert, who live by the chase. They are of diminutive stature
and, like the dwarfs further north, are supposed to represent the real
aborigines of Africa. The second are remnants of the Bechuana tribes.
These have been driven into the desert by the pressure of stronger
peoples behind. They are a people who cling to their original love for
domestic animals, and watch their flocks of lean goats and meagre cattle
with great care. On the edges of the desert are the Boers, emigrant Dutch
farmers, who have fled from British rule in the Transvaal, as their
fathers fled from Cape Colony and Natal. The coming of these always
betokens trouble with the natives, and as gold miners and diamond diggers
are penetrating into the Kalihari Desert, we may expect to see British
authority close on their heels, and perhaps at no distant day fully
established on the banks of the Zambesi, unless forsooth, some other
nations should see fit to interfere.

[Illustration: IN THE RAPIDS.]

In his trip to Loanda, Livingstone had been seeking an outlet to the
Atlantic for the Makalolo people. On his return, they were dissatisfied
with his route and preferred an outlet eastward toward the Indian Ocean.
He therefore resolved to explore a path in this direction for them.
With all his wants abundantly supplied by the friendly chief Sekelutu,
he set out for this great journey and after a fortnight’s laborious
travel reached the Zambesi at the mouth of the Chobe, in November 1855.
Sailing down the Zambesi, Livingstone saw rising high into the air before
him, at a distance of six miles, five pillars of vapor with dark smoky
summits. The river was smooth and tranquil, and his boat glided placidly
over water clear as crystal, past lovely islands, densely covered with
tropical vegetation, and by high banks with red cliffs peering through
their back-ground of palm trees. The traveller was not altogether
unprepared for the marvels that lay ahead. Two hundred miles away he
had heard of the fame of the great gorge Mozi-oa-Tunia——“the sounding
smoke,” where the Zambesi mysteriously disappeared. As the falls were
approached the pulse of the river seemed to quicken. It was still more
than a mile wide, but it hurried over rapids, and chafed around points
of rocks, and the most careful and skillful navigation was needed, lest
the canoe should be dashed against a reef, or hurried helplessly down
the chasm. The mystery in front became more inexplicable the nearer it
was approached, for the great river seemed to disappear suddenly under
ground, leaving its bed of hard black rock and well defined banks. By
keeping the middle of the stream and cautiously paddling between the
rocks, he reached a small island on the tip of the Victoria Falls——a spot
where he planted some fruit trees, and for the only time on his travels
carved his initials on a tree in remembrance of his visit.

It could not be seen what became of the vast body of water, until the
explorer had crept up the dizzy edge of the chasm from below, and
peeped over into the dark gulf. The river, more than a mile in width,
precipitated itself sheer down into a rent extending at right angles
across its bed. The walls of the precipice were as cleanly cut as if done
by a knife, and no projecting crag broke the sheet of falling waters.
Four rocks, or rather small islands, on the edge of the falls divide them
into five separate cascades, and in front of each fall rises one of the
tall pillars of smoke which are visible in time of flood at a distance of
ten miles. Only at low water can the island on which Livingstone stood
be approached, for when the river is high any attempt to reach it would
result in a plunge into the abyss below. Against the black wall of the
precipice opposite the falls two, three, and sometimes four rainbows,
each forming three fourths of an arc, are painted on the ascending clouds
of spray, which continually rush up from the depths below. A fine rain
is constantly falling from these clouds, and the cliffs are covered with
dense, dripping vegetation. But the great sight is the cataract itself.
The rent in the rocks seems to be of comparatively recent formation, for
their edges are worn back only about three feet.


Since Livingstone’s first visit, the falls have been more minutely
examined by other explorers, so that we now know more accurately their
dimensions and leading features. The breadth of the river at the falls
has been ascertained to be over 1860 yards, and the depth of the
precipice below the island 360 feet, or twice that of Niagara. At the
bottom of the rent, all the waters that have come over the falls rush
together in the centre of the gulf immediately beneath the island where,
confined in a space of twenty or thirty yards, they form a fearful
boiling whirlpool. From this a stream flows through the narrow channel
at right angles to the course above and, turning a sharp corner, emerges
into another chasm parallel with the first; then through another confined
gap to a third chasm; and so backward and forward in wild confusion
through forty miles of hills, until it breaks out into the level country
of the lower Zambesi. The rush of the river through this inaccessible
ravine is not so turbulent as might be imagined from its being pent in
between walls less than forty yards apart. It pushes its way with a
crushing, grinding motion, sweeping around the sharp corners with a swift
resistless ease that indicates plainly a great depth of water. It was
through this gap, caused by some unrecorded convulsion of the earth, that
the great lake which must have at one time occupied South Central Africa,
has been drained, and it forms undoubtedly the most wonderful natural
feature in Africa, if not in the world.

At the great falls of the Zambesi, named the Victoria Falls in honor of
the Queen of England, we are still a thousand miles from the sea, and
hundreds of miles from the first traces of civilization, such as appear
in the Portuguese possessions of eastern Africa.

Nature has been exceedingly lavish of her gifts in the Lower Zambesi
Valley, giving it a fertile soil, a splendid system of river
communication, and great stores of mineral and vegetable wealth,
everything indeed, that is necessary to make a prosperous country, except
a healthy climate, and industrious population. Here as upon the borders
of the Nile, war and slave hunting have cursed the country with an
apparently hopeless blight. Around the falls themselves are the scenes
of some of the most noteworthy events in Central African warfare. The
history of what are called the “Charka Wars,” has not yet and never will
be written, nevertheless they extended over as great an area and shook
as many thrones and dominions as those of Bonaparte himself. Charka was a
chief of the now familiar Zulu tribe, and grandfather of that celebrated
Cetywayo, whose ill-starred struggle with the English cost him his
country and his liberty, and whom we read of the other day as a royal
captive in the streets of London. It is said that he had heard of the
feats of the first Napoleon, and was smitten with a desire to imitate his
deeds. He formed his tribes into regiments, and these became the famous
Zulu bands which immediately began to make war on all their neighbors.
Conquered armies were incorporated into the Zulu army, and Charka went
on making conquests in Natal, Caffaria, and Southern Africa, leaving
the lands waste and empty. He spread the fame of the Zulus far into the
possessions of the English and Portuguese.

Turning north, he occupied the country as far as the Zambesi. Crossing
this stream, he moved into the regions between the Lakes Nyassa and
Tanganyika, then he carried his power to the westward as far as the
Victoria Falls, where he was met by the Makalolos, with whom Livingstone
has just made us familiar. In this people, under their chief, Sebituane,
he found an enemy worthy of his steel. This tribe could not be conquered
so long as their chief lived, but at his death their kingdom began to go
to pieces under Sekelutu, though he was not less brave and intelligent
than his father. It was over the smouldering embers of these wars that
Livingstone had to pass in his descent of the Zambesi.

As he descended the Zambesi and approached the Indian Ocean, the stream
gathered breadth and volume from great tributaries which flow into it on
either side. The Kafue, hardly smaller than the Zambesi itself, comes
into it from the north. Its course has still to be traced and its source
has yet to be visited. Further down, the Loangwa, also a mighty river,
enters it, and its banks, like those of the Kafue, are thickly populated,
and rich in mineral treasures. The great Zambesi sweeps majestically
on from one reach of rich tropical scenery to another. On its shores
are seen the villages of native fisherman. Their huts and clearings for
cotton and tobacco are girded about by dense jungles of bamboo, back
of which rise forests of palm. Behind the forests the grand hills slope
up steeply, diversified with clumps of timber and fringed with trees to
their summits. Behind, extend undulated plains of long grass to the base
of a second range of hills, the outer bank of the Zambesi Valley. Now
and then, on either bank, a river valley opens, whose sides are thickly
overgrown with jungle, above which rise the feathery tops of the palms
and the stately stems of the tamarind; on their margins, or on the slopes
above, herds of buffaloes, zebras, roebucks and wild pigs may be seen
peacefully grazing together, with occasionally a troop of elephants or
a solitary rhinoceros. Dr. Livingstone says, nowhere in all his travels
has he seen such an abundance of animal life as in this portion of the

Yet it is possible even here to be alone. The high walls of grass
on either side of the jungle path seem to the traveller to be the
boundaries of the world. At times a strange stillness pervades the air,
and no sound is heard from bird or beast or living thing. In the midst
of this stillness, interruptions come like surprises and sometimes in
not a very pleasant form. Once while Dr. Livingstone was walking in a
reverie, he was startled by a female rhinoceros, followed by her calf,
coming thundering down along the narrow path, and he had barely time to
jump into a thicket in order to escape its charge. Occasionally a panic
stricken herd of buffaloes will make a rush through the centre of the
line of porters and donkeys, scattering them in wild confusion into the
bush and tossing perhaps the nearest man and animal into the air. Neither
the buffalo nor any other wild animal, however, will attack a human being
except when driven to an extremity. The lion or leopard, when watching
for their prey, will perhaps spring on the man who passes by. The
buffalo, if it thinks it is being surrounded, will make a mad charge to
escape, or the elephant, if wounded and brought to bay, or in defense of
its young, will turn on its pursuers. A “rogue” elephant or buffalo, who
has been turned out of the herd by his fellows for some fault or blemish,
and has become cross and ill-natured by his solitary life, has been
known to make an unprovoked attack on the first creature, man or beast,
that presents itself to his sight. Thus, one savage “rogue” buffalo,
furiously charged a native of Livingstone’s party, in the ascent of the
Zambesi in 1860, and the man had barely time to escape into a tree when
the huge head of the beast came crashing against the trunk with a shock
fit to crack both skull and tree. Backing again, he came with another
rush, and thus continued to beat the tree until seven shots were fired
into him.

[Illustration: CHARGE OF A BUFFALO.]

But as a rule, every untamed creature flees in terror on sighting
red-handed man.


The only real obstacle to a descent of the Zambesi by steamer between
Victoria Falls and the sea, is what are called Kebrabesa Rapids, and even
the navigation of these is believed to be possible in time of flood, when
the rocky bed is smoothed over by deep water. In the ordinary state of
the river these rapids cannot be passed, although the inhuman experiment
has been tried of fastening slaves to a canoe and flinging them into
the river above the rapids. Dr. Kirk had here an accident which nearly
cost him his life. The canoe in which he was seated was caught in one of
the many whirlpools formed by the cataract, and driven broadside toward
the vortex. Suddenly a great upward boiling of the water, here nearly
one hundred feet deep, caught the frail craft, and dashed it against
a ledge of rock, which the doctor was fortunately able to grasp, and
thus save himself, though he lost all his scientific instruments. When
Livingstone’s boat, which was immediately behind the doctor’s reached the
spot, the yawning cavity of the whirlpool had momentarily closed up and
he passed over it in safety. All along the line of the Lower Zambesi we
find traces of Portuguese colonies, and also of the slave trade. Nowhere
in all Africa has this traffic been more flourishing or ruinous in its
effects, than in the colony of Mozambique. Here too, Livingstone was the
champion who, almost single handed, marched out and gave battle to this
many headed monster. Like Baker in the north, he inflicted upon it what
we must hope is a fatal wound. As with the Egyptian authorities in the
north, so the Portuguese authorities in the south, seem to have been
actively concerned with the slave dealers. They not only connived at it,
but profited by it. At one time, before slave trading became a business,
European influence and Christian civilization under the auspices of the
Jesuit missionaries extended far into the interior. At the confluence of
the Loangwa and Zambesi is still to be seen a ruined church of one of
the furthest outposts of the Jesuit fathers, its bell half buried in the
rank weeds. The spot is the scene of desolation now. Livingstone bears
generous testimony to the zeal, piety and self abnegation of these Jesuit
priests. Their plans and labors hindered the slave-gatherers’ success,
and it became necessary to get rid of them by calumny and often worse
weapons. With the failure of their mission perished all true progress and
discovery, and when Livingstone visited the Portuguese colonies on the
Zambesi, he found complete ignorance of the existence of the Victoria
Falls and only vague rumors of the existence of Lake Nyassa from which
the Shiré, the last of the great affluents of the Zambesi, was supposed
to flow.

Only ninety miles from the mouth of the great Zambesi, empties the Shiré
from the north. It is a strong, deep river, and twenty years ago was
unknown. It is navigable half way up, when it is broken by cataracts
which descend 1200 feet in thirty-five miles. If this river is always
bounded by sedgy banks, magnificent mountains are always in view on
either side. No vegetation could be richer than that found in its valley,
and its cotton is equal to our own Sea Island. The natives have both
the skill and the inclination to work. It is not a healthy region along
the river, for often the swamps are impenetrable to the base of the
mountains. Animal life abounds in all tropical forms. The glory of the
marshes is their hippopotami and elephants. Livingstone, in 1859, counted
800 of these animals in sight at once. But they have been greatly thinned
out by hunters.

From the cataracts of the Shiré, Livingstone made several searches for
lakes spoken of by the natives. He found Lake Shirwa amid magnificent
mountain scenery. But the great feature of the valley is Lake Nyassa, the
headwaters of the stream. It was discovered by Livingstone, September
16, 1859. It is 300 miles long and 60 wide. It resembles Albert Nyanza
and Tanganyika, with which it was formerly supposed to be connected.
Its shores are overhung by tall mountains, down which cascades plunge
into the lake. But once on the tops of these mountains, there is
no precipitous decline; only high table land stretching off in all
directions. The inhabitants are the wildest kind of Zulus, who carry
formidable weapons and paint their bodies in fiendish devices. They are
the victims of the slave traders to an extent which would shock even the
cruel Arab brigands of the White Nile.

Lake Nyassa is a “Lake of Storms.” Clouds are often seen approaching on
its surface, which turn out to be composed of “Kungo” flies, which are
gathered and eaten by the natives. The ladies all wear lip rings. Some of
the women have fine Jewish or Assyrian features, and are quite handsome.
The fine Alpine country north of Nyassa has not been explored, except
slightly by Elton and Thompson, who found it full of elephants, and one
of the grandest regions in the world for sublime mountain heights, deep
and fertile valleys, and picturesque scenery. The mountains rise to a
height of 12,000 to 14,000 feet, and are snow capped.

In the valley of the Shiré lie the bones of many an African explorer.
Bishop Mackensie is buried in its swamps. Thornton found a grave at the
foot of its cataracts. A few miles below its mouth, beneath a giant
baobab tree repose the remains of Mrs. Livingstone, and near her is the
resting place of Kirkpatrick, of the Zambesi Survey of 1826.

[Illustration: HUAMBO MAN AND WOMAN.]

Yet the thirst for discovery in the Zambesi country has not abated. Nor
will it till Nyassa, Tanganyika, and even Victoria and Albert Nyanza, are
approachable, for there can be no doubt that the Zambesi is an easier
natural inlet to the heart of Africa than either the Nile or Congo.

[Illustration: SAMBO WOMAN.]

[Illustration: GANGUELA WOMEN.]

No account of the Zambesi can be perfect without mention of Pinto’s
trip across the continent of Africa. He started from Benguela, on the
Atlantic, in 1877, under the auspices of the Portuguese Government
and in two years reached the eastern coast. He was a careful observer
of the people, and his journey was through the countries of the Nano,
Huambo, Sambo, Moma, Bihé, Cubango, Ganguelas, Luchazes and others till
he struck the Zambesi River. His observations of manners and customs are
very valuable to the student and curious to the general reader. His work
abounds in types of African character, and in descriptions of that art
of dressing hair which Christian ladies are ever willing to copy but in
which they cannot excel their dusky sisters. It takes sometimes two or
three days to build up, for African ladies, their triumphs of barbers’
art, but they last for as many months. The Huambo people, male and
female, enrich their hair with coral beads in a way that sets it off with
much effect. The Sambo women, though not so pretty in the face, affect a
louder style of head dress, and one which may pass as more artistic. But
Pinto was prepared to wonder how human hair could ever be gotten into
the various artistic shapes found on the heads of the Ganguela women.
Their skill and patience in braiding seemed to be without limit. The Bihé
head dress was more flaunting but not a whit less becoming. Indeed there
seemed in all the tribes to be a special adaptation of their art to form
and features, but whether it was the result of study or accident, Pinto
could not of course tell, being a man and not up in ladies’ toilets. The
Quimbande girls wore their hair comparatively straight, but their heads
were covered with cowries bespangled with coral beads. The Cabango women
have a happy knack of thatching their heads with their hair in such a way
as to give the impression that you are looking on an excellent job of
Holland tiling, or on the over-lapping scales of a fish.

[Illustration: BIHE HEAD DRESS.]

[Illustration: QUIMBANDE GIRLS.]

[Illustration: CABANGO HEAD DRESS.]

The Luchaze women evidently take their models from the grass covers of
their huts. They make a closely woven mat of their hair which has the
appearance of fitting the scalp like a cap. The Ambuella head dress is as
neatly artistic as any modern lady could desire. Indeed there is nothing
in civilized countries to approach it in its combination of beauty and
adaption for the purposes intended.

[Illustration: LUCHAZE WOMAN.]

[Illustration: AMBUELLA WOMAN.]

Pinto’s journey across Africa was one of comparative leisure. He was
well equipped, and was scarcely outside of a tribe that had not heard
of Portuguese authority, which extends inland a great ways from both
the east and west sides of the Continent. He did not however escape the
ordinary hardships of African travel, even if he had time to observe and
make record of many things which escaped the eye of other explorers.

The high carnival, or annual festival, of the Sova Mavanda was a
revelation to him. He had seen state feasts and war dances, but in this
the dancing was conducted with a regularity seldom witnessed on the
stage, and the centre of attraction was the Sova chief, masked after the
fashion of a harlequin, and seemingly as much a part of the performance
as a clown in a circus ring.

The rivers of this part of Africa are a prominent obstacle in a
traveller’s path. Even where they are bordered by wide, sedgy swamps,
there is in the centre a deep channel, and nearly always an absence of
canoes. But the natives are quick to find out fording places which are
generally where the waters run swiftly over sand-bars. Pinto’s passage of
the Cuchibi was affected at a fording where the bar was very narrow, the
water on either side 10 to 12 feet deep, and the current running at the
rate of 65 yards a minute. It was a difficult task, but was completed in
less than two hours by his whole party, and without accident.


[Illustration: FORDING THE CUCHIBI.]

After striking the tributaries of the Zambesi, he followed them to their
junction with the main stream in the very heart of Africa. Then he
descended the Zambesi in canoes to the mouth of the Cuango, or Chobe,
in the country of the Makalolos. He passed by the Gonye Falls, and down
through the Lusso Rapids, where safety depends entirely on the skill of
the native canoemen. After passing these rapids, which occupy miles of
the river’s length, he came into the magnificent Barotze region where
the river waters a finer plain than the Nile in any of its parts. But
Livingstone has already made us familiar with the Zambesi throughout all
these parts. Yet it is due to Pinto to say he made, with the instruments
at his command, more careful observations of the great Victoria Falls
(Mozi-oa-tunia) than any previous explorer, especially from below. He
could not get a height of over 246 feet, owing to the difficulty of
seeing to the bottom of the gorge, and found the verge broken into three
sections, one of a width of 1312 feet, another of 132 feet, and the
remainder a saw-like edge over which the waters poured smoothly only when
the stream was full.


“These falls,” says Pinto, “can be neither properly depicted nor
described. The pencil and the pen are alike at fault, and in fact, save
at their western extremity, the whole are enveloped in a cloud of vapor
which, perhaps fortunately, hides half the awfulness of the scene. It is
not possible to survey this wonder of nature without a feeling of terror
and of sadness creeping over the mind. Up at the Gonye Falls everything
is smiling and beautiful, here at Mozi-oa-tunia everything is frowning,
and awful.”

Pinto’s journey was now southward across the great Kalihari Desert, and
thence to the eastern coast. We must go with him to the centre of this
desert, for he unravels a secret there in the shape of “The Great Salt

We remember Livingstone’s discovery of Lake Ngami, into which and out
of which pours the Cubango river, to be afterwards lost in the central
Salt Pan of the desert. Pinto discovered that this “Salt Pan” received,
in the rainy season, many other large tributaries, and then became an
immense lake, or rather system of pans or lakes, ten to fifteen feet deep
and from 50 to 150 miles long. This vast system, he says, communicates
with Lake Ngami by means of the Cubango, or Zonga River, on nearly the
same level. If Ngami rises by means of its inflow, the current is down
the Cubango toward the “Salt Pans.” If however the “Pans” overflow, by
means of their other tributaries, the current is up the Cubango toward
Lake Ngami. So that among the other natural wonders of Africa we have not
only a system of great rivers pouring themselves into an inland sea with
no outlet except the clouds, but also a great river actually flowing two
ways for a distance of over a hundred miles, as the one or the other lake
on its course happens to be fullest.

                               THE CONGO.

Lake Tanganyika had been known to the Arab slave hunters of the east
coast of Africa long before the white man gazed upon its bright blue
waters. These cunning, cruel people had good reasons for guarding well
the secret of its existence. Yet popular report of it gave it many an
imaginary location and dimension. What is remarkable about it is that
since it has been discovered and located, it has taken various lengths
and shapes under the eye of different observers, and though it has been
circumnavigated, throughout its 1200 miles of coast, no one can yet be
quite positive whether it has an outlet or not.

It is 600 miles inland from Zanzibar, or the east coast of Africa, and
almost in the centre of that wonderful basin whose reservoirs contribute
to the Nile, Zambesi and Congo. The route from Zanzibar half way to the
lake is a usual one, and we need not describe it. The balance of the way,
through the Ugogo and Unyamwezi countries, is surrounded by the richest
African verdure and diversified by running streams and granitic slopes,
with occasional crags. At length the mountain ranges which surround the
lake are reached, and when crossed there appear on the eastern shore the
thatched houses of Ujiji, the rendezvous of all expeditions, scientific,
commercial and missionary, that have ever reached these mysterious waters.

Burton and Speke were the white discoverers of Tanganyika. It seemed to
them the revelation of a new world——a sight to make men hold their breath
with a rush of new thoughts, as when Bilboa and his men stood silent on
that peak in Darien and gazed upon the Pacific Ocean.

Fifteen years later Cameron struck it and could not believe that the
vast grey expanse was aught else than clouds on the distant mountains of
Ugoma, till closer observation proved the contrary.

Livingstone struck it from the west side. It was on his last journey
through Africa, he had entered upon that journey at Zanzibar, in April
1866, and made for Lake Nyassa and its outlet the Shiré River, both of
which have been described in connection with the Zambesi.


Then began that almost interminable ramble to which he fell a victim.
He was full of the theory that no traveller had yet seen the true head
waters of the Nile——in other words that neither Victoria nor Albert
Nyanza were its ultimate reservoirs, but that they were to be found
far below the equator in that bewildering “Lake Region” which never
failed to reveal wonderful secrets to such as sought with a patience and
persistency like his own.

He was supported in this by the myths of the oldest historians, by
the earliest guesses which took the shape of maps, by the traditions
of the natives that boats had actually passed from Albert Nyanza into
Tanganyika, but above all by the delusion that the great river Lualaba,
which he afterwards found flowing northward from lakes far to the south
of Tanganyika, could not be other than the Nile itself.

On his way westward from Lake Nyassa, he came upon the Loangwa River, a
large affluent of the Zambesi from the north. Crossing this, and bearing
northwest, he confronted the Lokinga Mountains, from whose crests he
looked down into the valley of the Chambesi. It was clear that these
mountains formed a shed which divided the waters of the central basin,
or lake region, of Africa from those which ran south into the Zambesi.
Had he discovered the true sources of the Nile at last? Where did those
waters go to, if not to the Mediterranean? The journal of his last
travels is full of soliloquies and refrains touching the glory of a
discovery which should vindicate his theory and set discussion at rest.

And what was he really looking down upon from that mountain height?
The Chambesi——affluent of Lake Bangweola? Yes. But vastly more. He was
looking on the head waters of the northward running Lualaba, which proved
his _ignis fatuus_ and led him a six year dance through the wilderness
and to his grave. The Lualaba has been christened Livingstone River, in
honor of the great explorer. Then again it was only the Lualaba in name,
which he was pursuing, with the hope that it would turn out to be the
Nile. It was really the great Congo, for after the Lualaba runs northeast
toward Albert Nyanza, and to a point far above the equator, it makes a
magnificent sweep westward, and southwestward, and seeks the Atlantic at
a point not ten degrees above the latitude of its source.

Thus was Livingstone perpetually deceived. But for all that we must
ever admire his enthusiasm for research and his heroism under extreme
difficulties. When he plunged down the mountain side into the depths of
the forests that lined the Chambesi, it was to enter a night of wandering
which had no star except the meeting of Stanley at Ujiji in 1871, and no
morning at all. What a story of heroic adventure lies in those years!

Ere his death, his followers had deserted him, carrying back to the coast
lying stories of his having been murdered. Trusted servants ran away
with his medicine chest, leaving him no means of fighting the deadly
diseases which from that hour began to break down his strength. The
country ahead had been wasted and almost emptied of inhabitants by the
slave-traders. Hunger and thirst were the daily companions of his march.
Constant exposure to wet brought on rheumatism and ague; painful ulcers
broke out in his feet; pneumonia, dysentery, cholera, miasmatic fever,
attacked him by turns; but still, so long as his strength was not utterly
prostrated, the daily march had to be accomplished. Still more trying
than the fatigue were the vexatious delays, extending sometimes over
many months, caused by wars, epidemics, or inundation, that frequently
compelled him to retrace his steps when apparently on the verge of some
great discovery. Often, in order to make progress, he had no alternative
but to attach his party to some Arab expedition which, under pretence of
ivory-trading, had come out to plunder, to kidnap, and to murder. The
terrible scenes of misery and slaughter of which he was thus compelled to
be the witness, had perhaps a stronger and more depressing effect on his
mind than all the other trials that fell to his lot. “I am heart-broken
and sick of the sight of human blood,” he writes, as he turns, baffled,
weary, and broken in health from one line of promising exploration to

He has left us only rough jottings of this story of wild adventure and
strange discovery. For weeks at a time no entries are found in his
journal. The hand that should have written them was palsied with fever,
the busy brain stunned into unconsciousness, and the tortured body borne
by faithful attendants through novel scenes on which the eager explorer
could no longer open his eyes. His letters were stolen by Arabs——both
those going to and coming from him. Yet his disjointed notes, written
on scraps of old newspapers with ink manufactured by himself out of the
seeds of native plants, tell a more affecting tale of valuable discovery
than many a carefully written narrative.

He gives us glimpses into the Chambesi jungles, whose population has
been almost swept away by the slave dealers. Fires sweep over the virgin
lands in the dry season. A single year restores to them their wonted
verdure. Song birds relieve the stillness of the African forests, but
those of gayest plumage are silent. The habits of bees, ants, beetles
and spiders are noted, and of the ants, found in all parts of Africa,
those in these central regions build the most palatial structures. The
most ferocious enemy of the explorer is not the portentous weapon of
lion’s claw, rhinoceros’ horn, or elephant’s tusk, but a small fly——the
notorious tsetse, whose bite is death to baggage animals, whose swarms
have brought ruin to many a promising expedition, and whose presence is a
more effectual barrier to the progress of civilization than an army of a
million natives.

[Illustration: ANT HILL 13 FEET HIGH.]

Then he is full of quaint observations on the lion, for which he had
little respect, and on the more lordly elephant and rhinoceros. A glade
suddenly opens where a group of shaggy buffaloes are grazing, or a herd
of startled giraffes scamper away through the foliage with their long
necks looking like “locomotive obelisks.” Then comes a description of a
hippopotamus hunt——“the bravest thing I ever saw.”


Again the night is often made hideous by the shrieks of the
soko——probably the gorilla of Du Chaillu, and of which Cameron heard on
Tanganyika and Stanley on the Lualaba. But only Livingstone has given
us authentic particulars of it. Its home is among the trees, but it can
run on the ground with considerable speed, using its long fore-arms as
crutches, and “hitching” itself along on its knuckles. In some respects
it behaves quite humanly. It makes a rough bed at night among the trees,
and will draw a spear from its body and staunch the wound with grass. It
is a pot-bellied, wrinkled-faced, human-featured animal with incipient
whiskers and beard. It will not attack an unarmed man or woman but will
spring on a man armed with a spear or stick. In attack it will seize the
intruder in its powerful arms, get his hand into its mouth, and one by
one bite off his fingers and spit them out. It has been known to kidnap
babies, and carry them up into the trees, but this seems to be more out
of sport than mischief. In his family relations the male soko is a model
of affection——assisting the mother to carry her young and attending
strictly to the proprieties of soko society. A young soko which was in
the doctor’s possession had many intelligent and winning ways, showed
great affection and gratitude, was careful in making its bed and tucking
itself in every night, and scrupulously wiped its nose with leaves. In
short, it must be allowed, that the native verdict, that the “soko has
good in him,” is borne out by the known facts, and that in some respects
he compares not unfavorably, both in character and manners, with some of
the men we make acquaintance with in our wanderings through Africa.

It was in April 1867, one year after his start from Zanzibar, that
Livingstone crossed the Chambesi, and soon afterwards found himself on
the mountains overlooking Lake Liemba, which proved to be none other
than the southern point of our old friend Lake Tanganyika. Thence he
zigzagged westward over sponge covered earth till he struck Lake Moero,
with a stream flowing into its southern end——really the Lualaba, on its
way from Lake Bangweola——and out at its northern——again the Lualaba——into
other lakes which the natives spoke of. Now, more than ever before, he
was persuaded that he was on the headwaters of the Nile, and he would
have followed his river up only to surprise himself by coming out into
the Atlantic through the mouth of the great Congo, if it had not been for
native wars ahead.

Then he put back to examine a great lake of this river system, which the
natives said existed south of Lake Moero. After a tramp of weeks through
wet and dry, he found himself on the marshy banks of Lake Bangweola.
Close by where he struck it, was its outlet, the Lualaba, here known as
Luapula. It is a vast reservoir, 200 miles long by 130 broad, and has no
picturesque surroundings, but is interspersed with many beautiful islands.

[Illustration: A SOKO HUNT.]

Confident now that he had the true source of the Nile——for the
water-shed to the south told him that every thing below it ran into the
Zambesi——nothing remained but for him to return to where he had left off
his survey of the Lualaba, far to the north, and to follow that stream
till he proved the truth of his theory. In going thither he would take
in Lake Tanganyika. It was a terrible journey. For sixteen days he was
carried in a litter under a burning sun, through marshy hollows and over
rough hills. Sight of Tanganyika revived his drooping spirits, but he
feared he must die before reaching Ujiji. It was March 1869, before he
reached the coveted resting place, but he found awaiting him no aid,
no medicines, no letters. He had been dead to the world for three long
years. King Mirambo was off on the war-path against the Arabs, and
Livingstone had to wait, undergoing slow recovery for many months.

At length, following in the trail of Arab slave dealers who had never
before penetrated so far westward of the lake, and frequent witness of
their barbarities, he reached a point on the Lualaba as far north as
Nyangwe, where the river already began to take the features of cliff
and cañon which Stanley found to belong to the lower Congo, and where
the natives showed the prevalence of those caste ideas which prevail on
the western coast but are unknown on the eastern. The region was also
one of gigantic woods, into which the sun’s rays never penetrated, and
beneath which were pools of water which never dried up. The river flats
were a mass of luxuriant jungle, abounding in animal life. Livingstone
was greatly annoyed at one of his halting places by the depredations
of leopards on his little flock of goats. A snare gun was set for the
offenders. It was heard to go off one night, and his attendants rushed to
the scene with their lances. The prize had been struck and both its hind
legs were broken. It was thought safe to approach it, but when one of the
party did so, the stricken beast sprang upon the man’s shoulder and tore
him fearfully before being killed. He was a huge male and measured six
feet eight inches from nose to tail.

[Illustration: A DANGEROUS PRIZE.]

Nyangwe, the furthest point of his journey up, or rather down, the
Lualaba, or Congo, is in the country of the Manyuema, the finest race
Livingstone had seen in Africa. The females are beautiful in feature and
form. The country is thickly peopled, and they have made considerable
progress in agriculture and the arts. Villages appear at intervals of
every two or three miles. The houses are neatly built, with red painted
walls, thatched roofs, and high doorways. The inhabitants are clever
smiths, weavers and tanners, and all around are banana groves and
fields tilled in maize, potatoes and tapioca. The chiefs are important
personages, who exercise arbitrary authority and dress regally.
Livingstone suspected they practised cannibalism, but could not prove
it. Stanley noticed a row of 180 skulls decorating one of their village
streets. He was told they were soko skulls, but carrying two away, he
presented them to Prof. Huxley, who pronounced them negro craniums of the
usual type.

[Illustration: NYANGWE MARKET.]

One of their great institutions is the market, held in certain villages
on stated days. People come to these from great distances to exchange
their fish, goats, ivory, oil, pottery, skins, cloth, ironware, fruit,
vegetables, salt, grain, fowls, and even slaves. There is a great variety
of costume, loud crying of wares, much bargaining and no inconsiderable
hilarity. The market at Nyangwe is held every four days, and the
assemblage numbers as many as 3000 people. Even in war times market
people are allowed to go to and fro without molestation.

The Arab slave traders are fast demoralizing these people. They set the
different tribes to fighting and then step in and carry off multitudes
of slaves. One fine market day these miscreants suddenly appeared among
the throng of unsuspecting people and began an indiscriminate firing.
They fled in all directions, many jumping into the river. The sole
object of the slave stealers was to strike terror into the hearts of the
inhabitants by showing the power of a gun. Livingstone witnessed this
unprovoked massacre and thought that five hundred innocent lives were
lost in it.

He found the Lualaba a full mile wide at Nyangwe, and still believed
it to be the Nile. In this firm belief he ceased to follow the stream
further and turned his weary feet back to Ujiji on Tanganyika. It will
always be a mystery how Livingstone could have nursed his delusion that
he was on the Nile, for so long a time. The moment Cameron set his eyes
on the Lualaba, he saw that it could not be the Nile, for its volume of
water was many times larger than that of the Nile, and moreover its level
was many hundred feet lower than the White Nile at Gondokoro. And though
Stanley had the profoundest respect for the views of the great explorer,
he hardly doubted that in descending the Lualaba he would emerge into the
Atlantic through the mouth of the great Congo.

Now while Livingstone is struggling foot-sore, sick, dejected, almost
deserted, back to Ujiji on the Lake Tanganyika, for rest, for medicine,
for news from home, after he has been lost for five long years, and after
repeated rumors of his death had been sent from Zanzibar to England, what
is taking place in the outside world?

On October 16, 1869, Henry M. Stanley, a correspondent of the New York
_Herald_, was at Madrid in Spain. On that date he received a dispatch
from James Gordon Bennett, owner of the _Herald_, dated Paris. It read,
“Come to Paris on important business.”

With an American correspondent’s instinct and promptitude, Mr. Stanley
knocked at Mr. Bennett’s door on the next night.

“Who are you?” asked Bennett.

“Stanley,” was the reply.

“Yes; sit down. Where do you think Livingstone is?”

“I do not know sir.”

“Well, I think he is alive and can be found. I am going to send you to
find him.”

“What! Do you really think I can find Livingstone? Do you mean to send me
to Central Africa?”

“Yes, I mean you shall find him wherever he is. Get what news you can of
him. And, may be he is in want. Take enough with you to help him. Act
according to your own plans. But——_find Livingstone_.”

By January, 1871, Stanley was at Zanzibar. He hired an escort, provided
himself with a couple of boats, and in 236 days, after an adventurous
journey, was at Ujiji on Tanganyika.

It was November, 1871. For weary months two heroes had been struggling
in opposite directions in the African wilds——Livingstone eastward from
Nyangwe on the Lualaba, to find succor at Ujiji on Tanganyika Lake,
Stanley westward from Zanzibar to carry that succor and greetings, should
the great explorer be still alive.

Providence had a hand in the meeting. Livingstone reached Ujiji just
before Stanley. On November 2, Stanley, while pushing his way up the
slopes which surrounded Tanganyika met a caravan. He asked the news, and
was thrilled to find that a white man had just reached Ujiji, from the

“A white man?”

“Yes, a white man.”

“How is he dressed?”

“Like you.”

“Young, or old?” “Old; white hair, and sick.”

“Was he ever there before?”


“Yes; a long time ago.”

“Hurrah!” shouted Stanley, “it is Livingstone. March quickly my men. He
may go away again!”

They pressed up the slopes and in a few days were in sight of Tanganyika.
The looked for hour was at hand.

“Unfurl your flags and load your guns!” he cried to his companions.

“We will, master, we will!”

“One, two, three——fire!”


A volley from fifty guns echoed along the hills. Ujiji was awakened.
A caravan was coming, and the streets were thronged to greet it. The
American flag was at first a mystery, but the crowd pressed round the new
comers. Stanley pushed his way eagerly, all eyes about him.

“Good morning, sir!”

“Who are you?” he startlingly inquired.

“Susi; Dr. Livingstone’s servant.”

“Is Livingstone here?”

“Sure, sir; sure. I have just left him.”

“Run, Susi; and tell the Doctor I am coming.”

Susi obeyed. Every minute the crowd was getting denser. At length Susi
came breaking through to ask the stranger’s name. The doctor could not
understand it all, and had sent to find out, but at the same time in
obedience to his curiosity, had come upon the street.

Stanley saw him and hastened to where he was.

“Dr. Livingstone, I presume.”

“Yes,” said he with a cordial smile, lifting his hat.

They grasped each other’s hands. “Thank God!” said Stanley, “I have been
permitted to see you!”

“Thankful I am that I am here to welcome you,” was the doctor’s reply.

They turned toward the house, and remained long together, telling each
other of their adventures; hearing and receiving news. At length Stanley
delivered his batch of letters from home to the doctor, and he retired to
read them.

Then came a long and happy rest for both the explorers. Livingstone
improved in health and spirits daily. His old enthusiasm was restored and
he would be on his travels again. But he was entirely out of cloth and
trinkets, was reduced to a retinue of five men, and had no money to hire

One day Stanley said, “have you seen the north of Tanganyika yet?”

“No; I tried to get there, but could not. I have no doubt that Tanganyika
as we see it here is really the Upper Tanganyika, that the Albert Nyanza
of Baker is the Lower Tanganyika, and that they are connected by a river.”

Poor fellow! Did ever mortal man cling so to a delusion, put such faith
in native stories and old traditions.

Stanley proposed to lend his assistance to the doctor, to settle the
question of Tanganyika’s northern outlet. The doctor consented; and now
began a journey, which was wholly unlike the doctor’s five year tramp. He
was in a boat and had a congenial and enthusiastic companion.


Tanganyika, like the Albert Nyanza which pours a Nile flood, and Nyassa
which flows through the Shiré into the Zambesi, is an immense trough sunk
far below the table-land which occupies the whole of Central Africa.
Its surrounding mountains are high. Its length is nearly 500 miles, its
waters deep, clear and brackish. Whither does it send its surplus waters?

We have seen that Livingstone was sure it emptied through the Nile. This
was what he and Stanley were to prove. In November 1871, three weeks
after the two had so providentially met at Ujiji, they were on their
voyage in two canoes. They coasted till they came to what Burton and
Speke supposed to be the end of the lake, which turned out to be a huge
promontory. Beyond this the lake widens and stretches for sixty miles
further, overhung with mountains 7000 feet high. At length they reached
the northern extremity where they had been assured by the natives that
the waters flowed through an outlet. No outlet there. On the contrary
seven broad inlets puncturing the reeds, through which the Rusizi River
poured its volume of muddy water into the lake, from the north. Here
was disappointment, yet a revelation. No Nile source in Tanganyika——at
least not where it was expected to be found. Its outlet must be sought
for elsewhere. Some thought it might connect eastward with Nyassa. But
what of the great water-shed between the two lakes? Others thought
it might have its outpour this way and that. Livingstone, puzzled
beyond propriety, thought it might have an underground outlet into the
Lualaba, and even went so far as to repeat a native story in support of
his notion, that at a point in the Ugoma mountains the roaring of an
underground river could be heard for miles.

Nothing that Livingstone and Stanley did, helped to solve the mystery
of an outlet, except their discovery of the Rusizi, at the north, which
was an inlet. After a three weeks cruise they returned to Ujiji, whence
Stanley started back for Zanzibar, accompanied part way by Livingstone.
After many days’ journey they came to Unyanyembe where they parted
forever, Stanley to hasten to Zanzibar and Livingstone to return to the
wilds to settle finally the Nile secret. Stanley protested, owing to the
doctor’s physical condition. But the enthusiasm of travel and research
was upon him to the extent that he would not hear.

Stanley had left ample supplies at Unyanyembe. These he divided with the
doctor, so that he was well off in this respect. He further promised to
hire a band of porters for him at Zanzibar and send them to him in the
interior. They parted on March 13, 1872.

“God guide you home safe, and bless you, my friend,” were the doctor’s

“And may God bring you safe back to us all, my dear friend! Farewell!”


This was the last word Doctor Livingstone ever spoke to a white man. They
wrung each other’s hands. Stanley was overcome, and turned away. He cried
to his men, “Forward March!” and the sad scene closed.

Livingstone waited at Unyanyembe for the escort Stanley had promised to
send. They came by August, and on the 14 of the month (1872) he started
for the southern point of Tanganyika, which he rounded, to find no
outlet there. Then he struck for Lake Bangweolo, intending to solve all
its river mysteries. That lake was to him an ultimate reservoir for all
waters flowing north, and if the Lualaba should prove to be the Nile,
then he felt he had its true source.

This journey was a horrible one in every respect. It rained almost
incessantly. The path was miry and amid dripping grass and cane. The
country was flat and the rivers all swollen. It was impossible to tell
river from marsh. The country was not inhabited. Food grew scarce. The
doctor became so weak that he had to be carried across the rivers on the
back of his trusty servant Susi. One stream, crossed on January 24, 1873,
was 2000 feet wide and so deep that the waters reached Susi’s mouth, and
the doctor got as wet as his carrier.

These were the dark, dismal surroundings of Lake Bangweolo. Amid such
hardships they skirted the northern side of the lake, crossed the
Chambesi at its eastern end, where the river is 300 yards wide and 18
feet deep, and turned their faces westward along the south side.

The doctor was now able to walk no further. When he tried to climb on his
donkey he fell to the ground from sheer weakness. His faithful servants
took him on their shoulders, or bore him along in a rudely constructed
litter. On April 27, 1873, his last entry reads, “Knocked up quite, and
remain——recover——sent to buy milch goats. We are on banks of the R.


His last day’s march was on a litter through interminable marsh and rain.
His bearers had to halt often, so violent were his pains and so great his
exhaustion. He spoke kindly to his humble attendants and asked how many
days’ march it was to the Lualaba.


Susi replied that “it was a three days’ march.”

“Then,” said the dying man, “I shall never see my river again.” The
malarial poison was already benumbing his faculties. Even the fountains
of the Nile had faded into dimness before his mind’s eye.

He was placed in a hut in Chitambo’s village, on April 29, after his
last day’s journey, where he lay in a semi-conscious state through the
night, and the day of April 30. At 11 P.M. on the night of the 30, Susi
was called in and the doctor told him he wished him to boil some water,
and for this purpose he went to the fire outside, and soon returned with
the copper kettle full. Calling him close, he asked him to bring his
medicine-chest, and to hold the candle near him, for the man noticed he
could hardly see. With great difficulty Dr. Livingstone selected the
calomel, which he told him to place by his side; then, directing him to
pour a little water into a cup, and to put another empty one by it, he
said in a low, feeble voice, “All right; you can go out now.” These were
the last words he was ever heard to speak.

It must have been about 4 A.M. when Susi heard Majwara’s step once more.
“Come to Bwana, I am afraid; I don’t know if he is alive.” The lad’s
evident alarm made Susi run to arouse Chuma, Chowperé, Matthew, and
Muanuaséré, and the six men went immediately to the hut.

Passing inside, they looked toward the bed. Dr. Livingstone was not lying
on it, but appeared to be engaged in prayer, and they instinctively drew
backward for the instant. Pointing to him, Mujwara said, “When I lay
down he was just as he is now, and it is because I find that he does
not move that I fear he is dead.” They asked the lad how long he had
slept. Majwara said he could not tell, but he was sure that it was some
considerable time: the men drew nearer.

A candle, stuck by its own wax to the top of the box, shed a light
sufficient for them to see his form. Dr. Livingstone was kneeling by the
side of his bed, his body stretched forward, his head buried in his
hands upon the pillow. For a minute they watched him: he did not stir,
there was no sign of breathing; then one of them, Matthew, advanced
softly to him and placed his hands to his cheeks. It was sufficient; life
had been extinct some time, and the body was almost cold: Livingstone was


His sad-hearted servants raised him tenderly up and laid him full length
on the bed. They then went out to consult together, and while there they
heard the cocks crow. It was therefore between midnight and morning of
May 1, 1873, his spirit had taken its flight. His last African journey
began in 1866.

The noble Christian philanthropist, the manful champion of the weak and
oppressed, the unwearied and keen-eyed lover of nature, the intrepid
explorer whose name is as inseparably connected with Africa as that of
Columbus is with America, had sunk down exhausted in the very heart of
the continent, with his life-long work still unfinished. His highest
praise is that he spent thirty years in the darkest haunts of cruelty
and savagery and yet never shed the blood of his fellow-man. The noblest
testimony to his character and his influence is the conduct of that
faithful band of native servants who had followed his fortunes so long
and so far, and who, embalming his body, and secretly preserving all his
papers and possessions, carried safely back over the long weary road to
the coast all that remained of the hero and his work.

Cameron was on his way toward Ujiji to rescue Livingstone when he heard
of his death. He pursued his journey and reached Lake Tanganyika,
determined to unravel the mystery of its outlet. He started on a sailing
tour around the lake in March 1874. His flag boat was the “Betsy.” He
only got half way round, but in this distance he counted the mouths of
a hundred rivers, and found the shores constantly advancing in bold
headlands and receding in deep bays. Both land and water teem with animal
life. Elephants abounded in the jungles, rhinoceri and hippopotami were
frequently seen, and many varieties of fish were caught. In one part the
cliffs of the shores were sandstone, in another they were precipices of
black marble, here were evidences of a coal formation, there crags of
chalk whose bases were as clearly cut by the waves as if done with a
knife. In many places cascades tumbled over the crags showing that the
table land above was like a sponge filled with moisture.

The native boatmen were lazy and full of superstitions. Every crag and
island seemed to be the resort of a demon of some kind, whose power for
harm had no limit in their imaginations. Never but once, and that in the
country of King Kasongo, had he seen the natives fuller of credulity nor
more subject to the powers of witchcraft and magic. Their stories of the
various forms of devils which dwelt in out of the way places were wilder
than any childish fiction, and their magicians had unbridled control of
their imaginations.


Cameron’s course was southward from Ujiji. He turned the southern end
of the lake and found no outlet there. But he saw some of the most
extraordinary examples of rock and tree scenery in the world. There were
magnificent terraces of rock which looked as if they had been built by
the hands of man, and scattered and piled in fantastic confusion were
over-hanging blocks, rocking stones, obelisks, and pyramids. All were
overhung with trees whose limbs were matted together by creepers. It
was like a transformation scene in a pantomime rather than a part of
Mother Earth, and one seemed to await the opening of the rocks and the
appearance of the spirits. Not long to wait. The creepers sway and are
pulled apart. An army of monkeys swing themselves into the foreground
and, hanging by their paws, stop and chatter and gibber at the strange
sight of a boat. A shout from the boatmen, and they are gone with a
concerted scream which echoes far and wide along the shores.

The inhabitants are not impressive or numerous on the shores, yet
they show art in dress, and in manufactures. They have been terribly
demoralized by the slave traders, and many sections depopulated entirely.
While sailing up the western shore of the lake, Cameron thought he found
what was the long sought for outlet of Tanganyika——the traditional
connecting link between it and Lakes Ngami and Albert Nyanza. Of a sudden
the mountains broke away and a huge gap appeared in the shores. There was
evidently a river there, and his boat appeared to be in a current setting
toward it. The natives said it was the Lukuga, and that it flowed out of
the lake westward toward the Lualaba.

But alas for human credulity. Cameron ran into the Lukuga for seven or
eight miles, found it a reedy lagoon, without current, stood up in his
boat and looked seven or eight miles further toward a break in the hills,
beyond which he was told the river ran away in a swift current from the
lake, and then he returned home to tell the wondrous story. Tanganyika
had an outlet after all. The wise men all said, “I told you so; the lake
is no more mysterious than any other.” Why Cameron should have stopped
short on the eve of so great a discovery, or why he should have palmed
off a native story as a scientific fact, can only be accounted for by the
fact that he was sick during most of his cruise and at times delirious
with fever. While it was thought that he had clarified the Tanganyika
situation, it was really more of a mystery than when Burton and Speke, or
Livingstone and Stanley, left it.

We here strike again the track of our own explorer Stanley. We have
already followed him on his first African journey to Ujiji to find
Livingstone, in 1871-72. We have seen also in our article on “The Sources
of the Nile,” how he started on his second journey in 1874, determined
to complete the work of Livingstone, by clearing up all doubts about the
Nile sources. This involved a two-fold duty, first to fully investigate
the Lakes Victoria Nyanza and Albert Nyanza; second the outlets of
Tanganyika and the secret of the great Lualaba, which had so mystified

In pursuit of this mission we followed him to Victoria Nyanza, on his
second journey, and saw how he was entertained by King Mtesa, and what
adventures he had on the Victoria Nyanza. He settled it beyond doubt
that the Victoria was a single large lake, with many rivers running into
it, the chief of which was the Alexandra Nile. This done, he had hoped
to visit Albert Nyanza, but the hostility of the natives prevented. He
therefore turned southwestward toward Tanganyika, and on his way fell
in with the old King Mirambo with whom he ratified a friendship by the
solemn ceremony of “blood brotherhood.” The American and African sat
opposite each other on a rug. A native chief then made an incision in
the right leg of Mirambo and Stanley, drew a little blood from each, and
exchanged it with these words:——“If either of you break this brotherhood
now established between you, may the lion devour him, the serpent poison
him, bitterness be his food, his friends desert him, his gun burst in his
hands and everything that is bad do wrong to him until his death.”

On May 27, 1876, Stanley reached Ujiji, where he had met Livingstone in
1871. Sadly did he recall the fact that the “grand old hero” who had
once been the centre of absorbing interest in that fair scene of water,
mountain, sunshine and palm, was gone forever. He came equipped to
circumnavigate the lake. He had along his boat, the “Lady Alice,” built
lightly and in sections for just this kind of work. Leaving the bulk of
his extensive travelling party at Ujiji, well provided for, he took along
only a sufficient crew for his boat, under two guides, Para, who had been
Cameron’s attendant in 1874, and Ruango who had piloted Livingstone and
Stanley in 1871.

Once again the goodly “Lady Alice” was afloat, as she had been on
Victoria Nyanza. He cruised along the shores for 51 days, travelled a
distance of 800 miles, or within 125 miles of the entire circumference of
the lake, and got back without serious sickness or the loss of a man. He
found it a sealed lake everywhere——that is, with waters flowing only into
it——none out of it.

What then became of Cameron’s wonderful story about the outlet of the
Lukuga? Stanley looked carefully into this. He found a decided current
running down the river into the lake. He pushed up the river to the
narrow gorge in the mountains, beyond which the natives said the Lukuga
ran westward toward the Lualaba. There he found a true and false story.
In this ancient mountain gap was a clear divide of the Lukuga waters.
Part ran by a short course into Tanganyika; part westward into the
Lualaba. Stanley was of the opinion that the waters of the lake were
rising year by year, and that in the course of time there would be a
constant overflow through the Lukuga and into the Lualaba, as perhaps
there had been long ages ago. Even now there is not much difference
between the level of the lake and the marshes found in the mountain gap
beyond, and Mr. Hore, who has since visited the Lukuga gap, says he found
a strong current setting out of the lake westward, so that the time may
have already come which Stanley predicted.

This Lukuga gap probably represents the fracture of an earthquake
through which the waters of the lake escaped in former ages and which
has been its safety-valve at certain times since. When it is full it
may, therefore, be said to have an outlet. When not full its waters
pass off by evaporation. It is only a semi-occasional contribution——if
one at all——to the floods of the great Congo, and in this respect has
no counterpart in the world. All of which settles the point of its
connection with the Nile, and leaves the sources of that river to the
north. Had Livingstone known this he could have saved himself the last
two years of his journey and the perils and sickness which led to his
death in the wilderness.

[Illustration: A WEIR BRIDGE.]

And now Stanley had clarified the situation behind him, which stretched
over 800 miles of African continent. But looking toward the Atlantic,
there lay stretched a 1000 miles of absolutely unknown country. Into this
he plunged, and pursued his course till he struck the great northward
running river——the Lualaba.

The path was broken and difficult. Rivers ran frequent and deep, and
crossing was a source of delay, except where, occasionally, ingeniously
constructed bridges were found, which answered the double purpose of
crossing and fish-weir. These are built of poles, forty feet long, driven
into the bed of the stream and crossing each other near the top. Other
poles are laid lengthwise at the point of junction, and all are securely
tied together with bamboo ropes. Below them the nets of the fishermen are
spread, and over them a person may pass in safety.

Stanley’s party had been greatly thinned out, but it still consisted
of 140 men. Cameron had found it impossible to follow the Lualaba.
Livingstone had tried it again and again, to meet a more formidable
obstacle in the hostility of the natives than in the forests, fens and
animals. Could Stanley master its secret?

He was better equipped than any of his predecessors, just as earnest,
and not averse to using force where milder means could not avail. He had
settled so many knotty African problems, that this the greatest of all
had peculiar fascination for him. He would “freeze to this river” and see
whether it went toward the Nile, or come out, as he suspected it would,
through the Congo into the Atlantic.

It was a mighty stream where he struck it, at the mouth of the
Luama——“full 1400 yards wide and moving with a placid current”——and close
to Nyangwe which was the highest point Livingstone had reached. Here he
marshalled his forces for the unknown depths beyond. He had only one
of his European attendants left——Frank Pocock. Not a native attendant
faltered. It would have been death to desert, in that hostile region.

Such woods, so tall, dense and sombre, the traveller had never before
seen. Those of Uganda and Tanganyika were mere jungle in comparison. Even
the Manyuema had penetrated but a little their depths. They line the
course of the Lualaba for 1500 miles from Nyangwe. At first Stanley’s
party was well protected, for ahead of it went a large group of Arab
traders. It was the opinion of these men that the “Lualaba flowed
northward forever.” Soon the Arabs tired of their tramp through the dark
dripping woods, and Stanley found it impracticable to carry the heavy
sections of the “Lady Alice.” It was resolved to take to the river and
face its rapids and savage cannibal tribes, rather than continue the
struggle through these thorny and gloomy shades.

The river was soon reached and the “Lady Alice” launched. From this on,
Stanley resolved to call the river the “Livingstone.” He divided his
party, so that part took to the boat, and part kept even pace on the
land. The stream and the natives were not long in giving the adventurers
a taste of their peculiarities. A dangerous rapid had to be shot. The
natives swarmed out in their canoes. The passage of the river was like a
running fight.

On November 23, 1877, while the expedition was encamped on the banks
of the river at the mouth of the Ruiki, thirty native canoes made a
determined attack, which was only repulsed by force. On December 8,
the expedition was again attacked by fourteen canoes, which had to be
driven back with a volley. But the fiercest attack was toward the end of
December, when a fleet of canoes containing 600 men bore down upon them
with a fearful din of war-drums and horns, and the battle cry “Bo-bo,
Bo-bo, bo-bo-o-o-oh!” Simultaneously with the canoe attack a terrible
uproar broke out in the forest behind and a shower of arrows rained on
Stanley and his followers.

There were but two courses for the leader, either to fight the best he
knew how in defense of his followers, or meet a surer death by surrender.
The battle was a fierce one for half an hour, for Stanley’s men fought
with desperation. At length the canoes were beaten back, and thirty-six
of them captured by an adroit ruse. This gave Stanley the advantage and
brought the natives to terms. Peace was declared.

Here the Arab traders declared they could go no further amid such a
country. So they returned, leaving Stanley only his original followers,
numbering 140. The year 1877 closed in disaster. No sooner had he
embarked all his force in canoes, for the purpose of continuing
his journey, than a storm upset some of them, drowning two men and
occasioning the loss of guns and supplies.

But the new year opened more auspiciously. It was a bright day and all
were happily afloat on the broad bosom of the Lualaba, where safety lay
in keeping in mid-stream, or darting to opposite shores when attacked.
What a wealth of affluents the great river had and how its volume had
been swelled! The Lomame had emptied through a mouth 600 yards wide.

On the right the Luama had sent in its volume through 400 yards of width,
the Lira with 300 yards, the Urindi with 500 yards, the Lowwa with 1200
yards, the Mbura with two branches of 200 yards each, and 200 miles
further on, the Aruwimi, 2000 yards from shore to shore.

The Lualaba (Livingstone) had now become 4000 yards wide and was flowing
persistently northward. The equator has been reached and passed. Can it
be that all these waters are the floods of the Nile and that Livingstone
was right? There was little time for reflection. The natives were ever
present and hostile, and the waters themselves were full of dangers.

But we have ran ahead of our party. Just after the mouth of the Lomame
was passed the expedition reached that series of cataracts, which have
been named Stanley Falls. Their roar was heard long before the canoes
reached them, and high above the din of waters were heard the war-shouts
of the Mwana savages on both sides of the stream. Either a way must be
fought through these dusky foes, or the cataract with its terrors must be


To dare the cataract was certain death. The canoes were brought to
anchor, and a battle with the natives began. They were too strong, and
Stanley retraced his course a little way, where he landed and encamped.
Another trial, a fierce surge through the ranks armed with lances and
poisoned arrows, gave them headway. The first cataract was rounded, and
now they were in the midst of that wonderful series of waterfalls, where
the Lualaba cuts its way for seventy miles through a range of high
hills, with seven distinct cataracts, in a channel contracted to a third
of its ordinary breadth, where the stream tumbles and boils, flinging
itself over ledges of rock, or dashing frantically against the walls that
hem it in, as if it were struggling with all its giant power to escape
from its prison. Within the gorge the ear is stunned with the continual
din of the rushing waters, and the attention kept constantly on the
strain to avoid the perils of rock, rapid, whirlpool, and cataract with
which the course is strewn. With extreme caution and good-luck the rapids
may be run in safety; but how are frail canoes to survive the experiment
of a plunge over a perpendicular ledge, in company with millions of tons
of falling water, into an abyss of seething and gyrating foam?

Ashore, the cannibal natives lie in wait to oppose a landing, or better
still, to slay or capture victims for their sport or larder. A toilsome
ascent has to be made to the summit of the bluffs forming the river banks
over rough boulders and through tangled forest. In places where the fall
of the stream is slight it may be possible to lower down the boats, by
means of strong hawsers of creepers, to the pool below; but in other
cases the canoes have to be dragged painfully up the cliffs, and launched
again with almost equal toil where the current seems a little calmer.
All this while the poisoned arrows are hissing through the air, spears
are launched out of every thicket, and stones are slung or thrown at the
unlucky pioneers from each spot of vantage. Only by van and rear guards
and flanking parties, and maintaining a brisk fire can the assailants
be kept at bay. The vindictive foe are as incessant in their attacks by
night as by day; and the whiz of the flying arrow, the hurtling of lances
through the temporary stockade and the sharp crack of the rifle, mingle
with the dreams of the sleeper.

The descent of Stanley Falls was not made without loss of life and
property. In spite of every precaution, canoes would be dragged from
their moorings and be sucked down by the whirlpools or swept over the
falls; or the occupants would lose nerve in the presence of danger, and
allow their craft to drift into the powerful centre current, whence
escape was hopeless.

During their passage occurred one of the most thrilling scenes in all
this long journey through the Dark Continent. The canoes were being
floated down a long rapid. Six had passed in safety. The seventh,
manned by Muscati, Uledi Muscati, and Zaidi, a chief, was overturned in
a difficult piece of the water. Muscati and Uledi were rescued by the
eighth canoe; but Zaidi, clinging to the upturned canoe, was swept past,
and seemed on the point of being hurled over the brink of the fall. The
canoe was instantly split in two, one part being caught fast below the
water, while the other protruded above the surface. To the upper part
Zaidi clung, seated on the rock, his feet in the water. Below him leapt
and roared the fall, about fifty yards in depth; above him stretched
fifty feet of gradually sloping water.

Mr. Stanley and a part of the expedition were at this time on the banks.
No more strange and perilous position than that of Zaidi can be imagined.
A small canoe was lowered by means of a cable of ratans; but the rope
snapped and the canoe went over the falls. Poles tied to creepers were
thrown toward him but they failed to reach. The rock was full fifty yards
from the shore. Stanley ordered another canoe, fastened by cables, to be
lowered. Only two men could be found to man it——Uledi, the coxswain of
the “Lady Alice,” and Marzouk, a boat boy. “Mamba Kwa Mungu,” exclaimed
Uledi, “My fate is in the hands of God.”

The two men took their places in the canoe and paddled across the stream.
The cables which held the boat against the current were slackened, and
it dropped to within twenty yards of the falls. A third cable was thrown
from the boat toward Zaidi, but he failed to catch it till the sixth
throw. Just as he grasped it the water caught him and carried him over
the precipice. All thought him lost, but presently his head appeared, and
he seemed still to have hold of the cable. Stanley ordered the canoemen
to pull. They did so, but the upper cables of the canoe broke and it was
carried toward the falls. Fortunately it caught on a rock, and Uledi and
Marzouk were saved. They still had hold of the cable which Zaidi clung
to. By dint of hard pulling they were enabled to save, for they dragged
him back up the falls to their own perilous position. There were three
now on the rock instead of one. Twenty times a cable loaded with a stone
was thrown to them before they caught it. They drew it taut and thus had
frail communication with the shore. But it was now dark and nothing more
could be done till light came. In the morning it was decided that the
cable was strong enough to hold the men if they would but try to wade and
swim to shore. Uledi dared it, and reached land in safety. The others
followed, and terminated an anxious scene.

[Illustration: RESCUE OF ZAIDI.]

Stanley was in the midst of these falls for twenty-two days and nights.
On January 28, 1878, his peril and hardship ended by passing the last
fall. By February 8, Rubanga, a village of the Nganza was reached,
where he found friendly natives. And not a moment too soon, for his men
were fainting for want of food. This was encouraging, but his heart was
further rejoiced that the Lualaba had not only assumed its wide, placid
flow, but had suddenly changed its northern direction to one almost
westward toward the Atlantic. He was then not going toward the Nile. No,
it was not a Nile water, but must be the Congo. What a rare discovery was
then in store for him!

And the natives verified the thought. For the Rubanga chief, on being
questioned, first mentioned the Congo. “Ikutu ya Kongo,” said he, “that
is the river’s name.” The words thrilled Stanley. The Lualaba had ceased
to flow, the Congo had taken up its song and would witness the further
adventures of the brave explorer. It was a mile and a half wide, with a
magnificent bosom. Green, fertile islands sprinkled its glassy surface.
The party enjoyed needed rest, in this paradise, and then February 10,
the boats pulled down stream again, the rowers bending gleefully and
hopefully to their arduous task.

On the 14 the mouth of the Aruwimi was passed and they were in the
Bangala country. Here they suffered from the most formidable attack yet
made. It was the thirty-first struggle through which the party had passed
on the Lualaba, or Congo, or Livingstone, though the latter name now
seems out of place since we know that all is Congo, clear to Bangweolo,
on whose shores Livingstone perished.

The shores of both the Congo and Aruwimi resounded with the din of
the everlasting war-drums, and from every cove and island swarmed a
crowd of canoes, that began forming into line to intercept and attack
the travellers. These crafts were larger than any that had yet been
encountered. The leading canoe of the savages was of portentous length,
with forty paddlers on each side, while on a platform at the bow were
stationed ten redoubtable young warriors, with crimson plumes of the
parrot stuck in their hair, and poising long spears. Eight steersmen were
placed on the stern, with large paddles ornamented with balls of ivory;
while a dozen others, apparently chiefs, rushed from end to end of the
boat directing the attack. Fifty-two other vessels of scarcely smaller
dimensions followed in its wake. From the bow of each waved a long mane
of palm fibre; every warrior was decorated with feathers and ornaments of
ivory; and the sound of a hundred horns carved out of elephants’ tusks,
and a song of challenge and defiance chanted from two thousand savage
throats, added to the wild excitement of the scene. Their wild war-cry
was “Yaha-ha-ha, ya Bengala.”

The assailants were put to flight after a series of charges more
determined and prolonged than usual. This time, however, the blood of the
strangers was fully up. They were tired of standing everlastingly on the
defensive, of finding all their advances repelled with scorn and hatred.
They carried the war into the enemy’s camp, and drove them out of their
principal village into the forest. In the centre of the village was found
a singular structure——a temple of ivory, the circular roof supported
by thirty-three large tusks, and surmounting a hideous idol, four feet
high, dyed a bright vermillion color, with black eyes, beard and hair.
Ivory here was “abundant as fuel,” and was found carved into armlets,
balls, mallets, wedges, grain pestles, and other articles of ornament and
use; while numerous other weapons and implements of iron, wood, hide,
and earthenware attested the ingenuity of the people. Their cannibal
propensities were as plainly shown in the rows of skulls that grinned
from poles, and the bones and other grisly remains of human feasts
scattered about the village streets.

[Illustration: ATTACK BY THE BANGALA.]

They had now a peaceful river for a time, or rather they were enabled
to float in its middle, or dodge from shore to shore, without direct
attack. But food became scarce. On February 20, they got a supply from
natives whom they propitiated. On the 23, Amima, wife of the faithful
Kacheche died. Her last words to Stanley were, “Ah, master, I shall never
see the sea again. Your child Amima, is dying. I have wished to see the
cocoa-nuts and the mangoes, but, no, Amima is dying, dying in a Pagan
land. She will never see Zanzibar again. The master has been very good to
his children, and Amima remembers it. It is a bad world master, and you
have lost your way in it. Good bye, master, and do not forget poor little
Amima.” The simple pathos of this African girl sweetened a death-bed
scene as much as a Christian’s prayer could have done.

For a distance of 1000 miles from Stanley Falls the river is without
cataracts, flowing placidly here, and there widening to ten miles,
with numerous channels through reedy islands. Every thing was densely
tropical——trees, flowers, plants, birds, animals. Crocodiles were
especially plenty in the water, and all the large land animals of the
equatorial regions could be seen at intervals. There were few adventures
with these, for the party clung rigidly to their boats; but once in a
while, a coterie, organized for a hunting bout, would come back with such
stirring tales of attack and escape as we are accustomed to read of in
connection with the eastern coasts of the continent where hunting the
elephant, rhinoceros, lion, hippopotamus, is more of a regular business,
and where spicy stories of adventure are accepted without question.

After a treacherous attack by the people of King Chumbiri——Stanley’s
thirty-second battle——the natives showed a more peaceable disposition.
They had heard of western coast white men and knew something of their
ways. So there was a pleasant flow of water and a safe shore, for many
days. But now the river was about to change. It received the Ikelemba, a
powerful stream of tea-colored water, 1000 yards wide. Its waters flowed
along in the same bed, unmixed with those of the Congo, for 150 miles.
This immense tributary and that of the Ibari, were reported to come
from great lakes, 800 miles to the south, and probably the same that
Livingstone and Cameron both mention in their travels.

For 900 miles the Congo has had a fall of only 364 feet, or a third of
a foot to the mile. We are now within 400 miles of the Atlantic, yet
1150 feet above it, and on the edge of the great table lands of Central
Africa. The days of smooth sailing are at an end. The mountains come
close to the stream, and the channel narrows. The white chalky cliffs
remind Frank Pocock of the coasts of Dover in his own England. A roar
is heard in advance. The cataracts have begun again, and they sound as
ominously as the war-cry of the natives hundreds of miles back in the
woods and jungles.

We have now been over four months on this river, and the next two
hundred miles are to be the most tedious, laborious and disastrous of
all. The terrors of Stanley Falls are here duplicated a thousand times.
Bluffs rise 1500 feet high. Between them the river rushes over piles of
boulders, or shoots with frightful velocity past the bases of impending
crags, up which one must quickly scramble or else be carried into the
boiling whirlpools below.

These falls we shall call the “Livingstone Falls.” In their general
features they are not like Niagara, or Victoria on the Zambesi, but
a succession of headlong rushes, as if the river were tearing down a
gigantic rock stairway.

Of the Great Ntamo Fall, Stanley says: “Take a strip of sea, blown over
by a hurricane, four miles in length by half a mile in breadth, and a
pretty accurate conception of its rushing waves may be obtained. Some of
the troughs were one hundred yards in length, and from one to another
the mad river plunged. There was first a rush down into the middle of an
immense trough, and then, by sheer force, the enormous volume would lift
itself upwards steeply until, gathering itself into a ridge, it suddenly
hurled itself twenty or thirty feet straight upwards before rolling down
into another trough. The roar was deafening and tremendous. I can only
compare it to the thunder of an express train through a rock tunnel.”

In this vast current, rushing along at the rate of thirty miles an hour,
the strongest steamer would be as helpless as a cockle-shell, and as for
frail canoes, they had to be dragged from rock to rock, or taken clear
from the water and borne by land around the obstructions. Frequently
canoes were wrecked and then a halt had to be ordered till new ones were
hewn from trees. Yet amid trial, sickness and sore distress they had to
pause at times in wonder before the imposing sights that opened on them.
One was that of the Edwin Arnold River which flings itself with a single
bound of 300 feet into the Congo, clearing the base of its cliff by ten
yards. Still more wonderful is the cascade of the Nkenke, which is a
plunge of a 1000 feet; and near by another with a fall of 400 feet.

Many gaps were made in the ranks of Stanley’s companions through this
“Valley of Shadow.” In one day (March 28) he saw eleven of his men swept
over a cataract and disappear in the boiling waters below. First a boat,
in which was Kalulu, an attendant of Stanley in all his journeys, was
sucked within the power of a fall and plunged into the abyss. Hardly had
the eye turned from this horror when another canoe was seen shooting
down the stream toward what appeared to be certain death. By almost a
miracle it made an easy part of the cataract and the occupants succeeded
in reaching the shore in safety. Close behind came a third with a single
occupant. As the boat made its plunge the occupant rose and shouted a
farewell to his companions on the shore. Then boat and man disappeared.
A few days afterwards he re-appeared like an apparition in camp. He had
been tossed ashore far below and held a prisoner by the natives, who had
picked him up more dead than alive.


On April 12, the “Lady Alice” herself, with her crew, came to the very
verge of destruction. The boat was approaching a bay in which the camp
for the night was to be made, when a noise like distant thunder fell on
the ears of the crew. The river rose before them into a hill of water.
It was a whirlpool, at its full. All hands bent to their paddles and
the boat was plunged into the hill of water before it broke. They thus
escaped being sucked into a vortex which would have sunk the boat and
drowned all. As it was, the boat was whirled round and round through a
succession of rapids, before the crew could bring her under control again.

Fortunately the natives were still friendly and of superior type. They
had many European manufactures, which pass from tribe to tribe in regular
traffic, and enjoyed a higher civilization than those of the Central
African regions. Stanley rested with these people for several days while
his carpenter made two new canoes.

On June 3, he lost his servant, comrade and friend, last of the
Europeans, the brave and faithful Frank Pocock. All the boats had been
taken from the water and carried past the Massase Falls, except the canoe
“Jason,” in which were Pocock, Uledi and eleven others. This had gotten
behind on account of Frank’s ulcerated feet. Chafing at the delay he
urged Uledi to “shoot the falls,” against the latter’s judgment, and even
taunted the crew with cowardice.

“Boys,” cried Uledi, addressing the crew, “our little master is saying
that we are afraid of death. I know there is death in the cataract; but
come, let us show him that black men fear death as little as white men.”

“A man can die but once!” “Who can contend with his fate?” “Our fate is
in the hands of God,” were the various replies of the men.

“You are men,” exclaimed Frank.

The boat was headed for the falls. They were reached, and in another
moment the canoe had plunged into the foaming rapid. Spun round like a
top in the furious waters, the boat was whirled down to the foaming pit
below. Then she was sucked below the surface and anon hurled up again
with several men clinging to her, among them Uledi. Presently the form
of the “little master” was seen floating on the surface. Uledi swam to
him, seized him, and both sunk. When the brave Uledi appeared again he
was alone. Poor Pocock’s tragic death was a blow to the whole expedition.
Most of the party gave way to superstitious dread of the river and many
deserted, but quickly returned, after a trial of the dreary woods.

[Illustration: DEATH OF FRANK POCOCK.]

On June 23, the carpenter of the expedition was swept over the Zinga
Falls, in the canoe, “Livingstone,” and drowned. Stanley’s food supply
was frequently very short amid the difficulties of Livingstone Falls.
Not that there was not plenty on the shores, but his means of buying
were exhausted, and such a thing as charity is not common to the African
tribes. Even where most friendly, they are always on the lookout for a
trade, and a bargain at that. It is a great hardship for them to give,
without a consideration.

The appearance of his attendants cut Mr. Stanley to the heart every
day——so emaciated, gaunt, and sunken-eyed were they; bent and crippled
with weakness who had once been erect and full of manly vigor. And
the leader’s condition was no better. Gone now was all the keen ardor
for discovery, the burning desire to penetrate where no white man had
yet penetrated which animated his heart at the outset of his journey.
Sickness that had drained his strength, anxiety that had strained to its
utmost pitch the mind, sorrow for loss and bereavement that had wearied
the spirit——these had left Mr. Stanley a very different man from that
which he was when he set out full of hope and ardor from Zanzibar. All
his endeavor now was to push on as fast as possible, to reach the ocean
with as little more of pain and death to his followers as possible.

At last Stanley struck a number of intelligent tribes who gave much
information about the rest of the river and the coast. There were three
great falls still below them, and any number of dangerous rapids. It
would be folly to risk them with their frail barks. Moreover, he learned
that the town of Boma, on the Atlantic coast, could be reached by easy
journeys across the country. His main problem, as to whether the Lualaba
and the Congo were the same, had long since been solved. He had been
following the Congo all the time, had seen its splendid forests and
mighty affluents, its dashing rapids and bewildering whirlpools and
falls, had even, through the spectacles of Livingstone, seen its head
waters in Lake Bangweolo, amid whose marshes the veteran explorer laid
down his life.

What need then to risk life further at this time, and in his very poor
condition. He resolved to leave the river and make direct for the
coast at Boma. When he assembled his followers to make this welcome
announcement to them, they were overcome with joy. Poor Safeni, coxswain
of the “Lady Alice,” went mad with rapture and fled into the forest.
Three days were spent in searching for him, but he was never seen more.

Relinquishing his boat and all unnecessary equipage at the cataract
of Isangila, the party struck for Boma, but only to give out entirely
when still three days distant. A messenger was sent in advance for aid.
He came back in two days with a strong band of carriers and abundance
of food. The perishing party was thus saved, and was soon receiving
the care of the good people of Boma. Here all forgot their toils and
perils amid civilized comforts and the pardonable pride aroused by their
achievements. Stanley’s exploit is unparalleled in the history of African
adventure. Though not the first to cross the Continent, he hewed an
unknown way and every step was a startling revelation. He did more to
unravel African mysteries and settle geographic problems than any other

And, August 12, 1877, three years after his start from Zanzibar on the
Indian Ocean, and eight months after setting out from Nyangwe to follow
the Lualaba, he stood on the Atlantic shores at Boma and gazed on the
mouth of the Congo, whose waters shot an unmixed current fifty miles out
to sea. Though he had proved it to be so, he could still hardly believe
that this vast flood pouring 2,000,000 cubic feet of water a second into
the ocean, through a channel ten miles wide and 1300 feet deep, was the
same that he had followed through wood and morass, rapid and cataract,
rock bound channel and wide expanse, for so long a time, and that it was
the same which Diego Cam discovered by its color and reedy track four
hundred years before, while sailing the ocean out of sight of land.

In the journey of 7200 miles, one hundred and fourteen of Stanley’s
original party had perished. Many had fallen in battle or by treachery,
more were the victims of disease, and some had succumbed to toil or been
“washed down by the gulfs.” But a goodly remnant survived. These were
returned, according to contract, to their Zanzibar home. Stanley went
with them by steamer around the Cape of Good Hope.

It needs not to tell the joy with which the people again beheld their
home; how they leaped ashore from the boat; how their friends rushed
down to the beach to welcome back the wanderers; how wives and husbands,
children and parents, “literally leaped into each other’s arms,” while
“with weeping and with laughter” the wonderful story of the long and
terrible journey is told to the eager listeners.

Stanley, having paid his followers in full, according to the terms of his
contract, and rewarded some over and above their lawful claims, so that
not a few of the men were able to purchase neat little houses and gardens
with their savings, prepared to quit Zanzibar forever.

The scene on the beach on the day of Stanley’s departure was a strange
and an affecting one. The people of the expedition pressed eagerly around
him, wrung his hand again and again, and finally, lifting him upon their
shoulders, carried him through the surf to his boat. Then the men, headed
by Uledi the coxswain, manned a lighter and followed Mr. Stanley’s boat
to the steamer, and there bade their leader a last farewell.

Stanley’s own feelings at this moment were no less keen. As the steamer
which bore him home left the shore of Zanzibar behind, his thoughts
were busy with the past; he was living once again in retrospect the
three strange, eventful years, during which these simple black people
had followed him with a fidelity at once simple and noble, childlike
and heroic. For him, his comrades in travel through the Dark Continent
must ever remain heroes; for it was their obedient and loyal aid that
had enabled him to bring his expedition to a successful and noble issue,
to accomplish each of the three tasks he had set himself to do,——the
exploration of the great Victoria Nyanza Lake, the circumnavigation of
Tanganyika, and the identification of Livingstone’s Lualaba River with
the Congo.

Ever since this memorable journey, Mr. Stanley has been enthusiastically
working to found a great Congo free Government and commercial empire,
which all the nations shall recognize and to which all shall contribute.
He has projected a steamer system, of heavy draught vessels, from the
mouth of the river to the first cataracts. Here a commercial emporium
is to be founded. A railway is to start thence and lead to the smooth
waters above. This would open 7000 miles of navigable waters on the Upper
Congo and a trade of $50,000,000 a year. It would redeem one of the
largest fertile tracts of land on the globe and bring peace, prosperity
and civilization to millions of human beings. Only climate seems to be
against his plans, for it is undoubtedly hostile to Europeans. But if
native energies can be enlisted sufficiently to make a permanent ground
work for his ideal state, he may yet rank not only as the greatest of
discoverers but as the foremost of statesmen and humanitarians. The
possibilities of the Congo region are boundless.

A missionary just returned from the Congo country thus writes of it:

“The bounds of this ‘Congo Free State’ are not yet defined, but they will
ultimately embrace the main stream and its immense system of navigable
tributaries, some of which are 800 miles long. The Congo itself waters a
country more than 900 miles square, or an area of 1,000,000 square miles.
These rivers make access to Equatorial Africa and to the Soudan country
quite easy.

“The resources of this fine region are exhaustless. The forests are dense
and valuable. Their rubber wealth is untouched, and equal to the world’s
supply. Everywhere there is a vast amount of ivory, which lies unused or
is turned into the commonest utensils by the natives. There are palms
which yield oil, plantains, bananas, maize, tobacco, peanuts, yams, wild
coffee, and soil equal to any in the world for fertility. Europeans
must guard against the climate, but it is possible to get enured to it,
with care. In the day-time the temperature averages 90° the year round,
but the average of the night temperature is 70° to 75°. Rain falls
frequently, and mostly in the night. The natives are hostile, only where
they have suffered from invasion by Arab slave dealers.

“Already there are some 3000 white settlers in the heart of the Congo
country——Portuguese, English, Belgians, Dutch, Scandinavians and
Americans, and their influence is being felt for good. The completion of
Stanley’s railroad around the Congo rapids will give fresh impetus to
civilization and lay the basis of permanent institutions in this great

                          THE CAPE OF STORMS.

The little Portuguese ship of Bartholomew Diaz was the first to round the
“Cape of Storms” in 1486. When King John II. of Portugal, heard of his
success he said it should thereafter be called Cape of Good Hope. The
passage of this southermost point of Africa meant a route to India, on
which all hearts were set at the time.

Nearly two hundred years later, in 1652, the Dutch settled at the Cape.
They called the Quaique, or natives, Hottentots——from the repetition of
one of the words used in their dances.

The Colony became a favorite place for banished Huguenots——from France
and Peidmont. It grew, got to be strong, and at length tyrannical. The
more liberal members left it and pushed into the interior, where they
drove back the Kaffirs, and redeemed much valuable territory. The parent
Colony tried to force its government on these pioneers, who were called
“Boers”——the Dutch word for “farmers.” A rebellion ensued. The Prince of
Orange asked England to help suppress it (1795). She did so, and with
characteristic greed, kept it till 1803. It then passed to the Dutch, but
was retaken by England in 1806.

Settlement marched rapidly up the eastern coast of Africa, and a great
agricultural section was opened. The Kaffir tribes protested and five
fierce wars were fought, with the loss of all Kaffraria to the natives.
The Boers were never reconciled to British authority. They murmured,
rebelled, and kept migrating northward, till north of the Orange River
they founded the Natal, the Orange Free State, and the Transvaal Republic.

The high promontory of Cape of Good Hope——Table Mountain——is visible a
long distance from the sea, owing to the dry, light atmosphere. On its
spurs are many ruins of block-houses, used by the early settlers. Over
it, at times, hangs a veil of cloud, called the “Table Cloth,” which,
when dispersed by the sun, the inhabitants say is put away for future

The town of Cape Colony, or Cape Town, is now perfectly modern, and very
pretty. It was here that the great missionary Robert Moffat began his
African career in 1816; here that Pringle started to found his ideal town
Glen Lynden.

In 1867 all Cape Colony was thrown into excitement by the discovery
that diamond fields existed inland near the Kalihari Desert. There was
a rush like that in our own country in 1849 when gold was discovered in
California. Exaggerated stories of finds of diamonds by natives, valued
at $50,000 a piece, were eagerly listened to, and in a few weeks there
was a population of 10,000 in a hitherto unknown region, with the road
thither, for hundreds of miles, literally alive with wagons, oxen, pack
mules and footmen.

The diamond territory is Griqualand, on the headwaters of the Orange and
Vaal Rivers and close to the desert——partly in it. The region is 16,000
square miles in extent and 3000 feet above the ocean. In the diamond
fields the diamonds are found in the sand by washing. This is the native
method of getting them, and also that adopted by thousands of people who
have no capital.

But it was soon found that they could be had in larger numbers and of
greater size and purity by digging. This brought capital, machinery, and
regular mining tracts, called “Claims.”

At first the mining towns were made up of tents, filled with a mixed
people, toiling willingly all day, and dancing, gambling, drinking and
rioting at night. At one time there were 60,000 persons in these diamond
fields, but now not more than 40,000.

The Kimberley mine is the favorite. It has been excavated to a depth of
250 feet and has proved very rich. It is now surrounded by quite a town,
and the people——mostly native diggers——are orderly and industrious. The
diggers delve with spade and pick in the deep recesses of the mine, and
the sand, rock and earth are pulled to the surface in buckets, where they
are sorted, sieved, and closely examined for diamonds.

Formerly the “claims” sold for fabulous prices. Many, only thirty by
sixteen feet, brought $100,000. And some rare finds have been made.
The great diamond, found a few years ago, and called the “Star of South
Africa,” was sold, before cutting, for $55,000. And while we are writing,
one is undergoing the process of cutting in Paris which is a true
wonder. It arrived from South Africa in August, 1884, and was purchased
by a syndicate of London and Paris diamond merchants. It weighs in the
rough 457 carats and will dress to 200 carats. The great Koh-i-noor,
weighs only 106 carats, the Regent of France 136-3/4 carats, the Star of
South Africa 125 carats, the Piggott 82-1/4 carats, and the Great Mogul
279 carats. But the latter is a lumpy stone, and if dressed to proper
proportions, would not weigh over 140 carats.

[Illustration: ZULUS.]

The Kaffraria country, lying between Cape Colony and Natal, is rich in
beautiful scenery and abounds in animal life. While the larger animals,
as the elephant and lion, have retreated inland, there are still many
beasts of prey, and the forests have not given over their troops of
chattering baboons. Its greatest scourge is periodical visits of immense
flights of locusts, which destroy all vegetation wherever they light. The
natives make them into cakes and consider them a great delicacy. These
natives are a brave, fine people, and have been conquered and held with
difficulty. As they yield to civilization they make an industrious and
attractive society.

Natal was so named, in honor of our Saviour, more than 300 years ago by
Vasco de Gama. It was the centre of the Zulu tribes, whom King Charka
formed into an all-conquering army, until the invasion of the country by
the Boers. It became a British colony in 1843, and has been held with the
greatest difficulty, for the Zulu warriors showed a bravery and method in
their warfare which made them formidable enemies even against forces with
superior arms and discipline. It was in the English wars with the Zulus
that the Prince Imperial, of France, lost his life. A writer describes
the Zulus “as a race of the most handsome and manly people found among
savages; tall, muscular, and of remarkable symmetry, beauty and strength.
Their carriage is upright, and among the chiefs, majestic.”

The Drackenberg Mountains, many of whose peaks are 10,000 feet high,
shut off Natal from the Transvaal Republic. This Transvaal region was,
as already seen, redeemed from the natives by the Boers, who are mostly
devoted to farming, but many to a pastoral life like that of the old
patriarchs, living in wagons or tents and leading, or rather following,
about immense herds of cattle and sheep. They are a hardy, strong, brave
people, and in subduing them and annexing their beautiful and fertile
country, it is very doubtful whether Great Britain has done herself
credit or humanity benefit. Boers may not be all that modern civilization
could desire. In their contact with the natives they may have retrograded
to a certain extent. But it is very probable they have made larger
and more beneficial conquests over nature than any other more highly
endowed and uncompromising people could have done in the same length
of time. There is hardly a product of the soil that does not grow in
the Transvaal——corn, tobacco, apricots, figs, oranges, peaches——two and
sometimes three crops a year. It is finely watered with noble mountain
streams, and is rich in iron, tin, copper, lead, coal and gold. The
capital, Pretoria, is the centre of a rich trade in ostrich feathers.

[Illustration: MY CATTLE WERE SAVED.]

Ostrich farming is a large industry in these South African States.
Farmers buy and sell these animals like cattle. They fence them in,
stable them, tend them, grow crops for them, study their habits, and cut
their precious feathers, all as a matter of strict business. The animals
begin to yield feathers at eight months old, and each year they grow more
valuable. They are nipped or cut off, not plucked. The ostrich feather
trade of South Africa is of the value of $1,000,000 a year. The birds
are innocent and stupid looking, but can attack with great ferocity,
and strike very powerfully with their feet. The only safe posture under
attack by them is to lie down. They then can only trample on you.

[Illustration: BUFFALO HUNTERS.]

The Transvaal region is a paradise for hunters. The elephant, rhinoceros,
hippopotamus, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, springbok, gnu, lion, and indeed
every African animal, finds a home amid its deep woody recesses and
sparkling waters. As he entered its borders from the desert, Pinto’s
camp was attacked by two lions, who scented his desert pony and herd
of cattle. The natives became demoralized, and Pinto himself could do
little toward saving his property on account of the darkness. Fortunately
he got his hand on a dark lantern, in which was a splendid calcium light.
Placing this in the hand of a native, he ordered him to go as near to the
growling intruders as was safe, Pinto following with a double-barreled
rifle. The glare of the light was then turned full in the faces of the
beasts. They were dazed by it, and cowered for a moment. That moment
was fatal. Pinto gave both a mortal wound and saved his cattle. And it
was here that Cummings lost one of his guides, who was pounced upon by
a lion as he lay asleep before a camp fire. Here also Lieutenant Moodie
and his party got the ill-will of a herd of elephants, which charged upon
them and gave furious chase, knocking the Lieutenant down and tramping
him nearly to death. One of his companions was killed outright by the
charging beasts and his body tossed angrily into the jungle with their

But the finest sport is hunting the buffalo. He is stealthy, cunning and
swift. It requires a long shot or a quick ingenious chase to bag him.
He never knows when he is beaten and will continue to charge and fight
though riddled with bullets or pierced with many lances. Gillmore was
once intent on an elephant track when suddenly his party was charged by
five buffaloes. His horse saved him by a tremendous leap to one side, but
one of his attendants was tossed ten feet in the air, and another landed
amid the branches of a tree, one of which he fortunately caught.


Threats of war between England and Portugal bring into prominence that
portion of Central Africa which is embraced in the title “Nyassaland.”
While ordinarily it might be embraced in the Zambesi system, it is a land
quite by itself, especially as to its topography and the position it
occupies in the commercial and political world, and is in many respects
the most interesting part of East Central Africa. It is a back-ground to
Portugal’s Mozambique possessions, but at the same time the very heart
of the British effort to cut a magnificent water way inland from the
mouths of the Zambesi to the mouths of the Nile. Hence the conflict of
interest there, a conflict which must go on by arbitration or by war,
till Great Britain secures what she wants——control of the Shiré river and
Lake Nyassa. The navigation of the Lower Zambesi is already open to all

The river Shiré, which we are now about to ascend, falls into the Zambesi
from the left, only some ninety miles from its mouth. Twenty years ago
its course was unknown, and its banks were wildernesses untrodden by
the foot of a white man. Now the stream is one of the best-known and
most frequented of the highways to the Lake Regions. The Shiré is much
narrower than the Zambesi, but of deeper channel, and in the upper and
lower portions more easily ascended by steamers. Midway in its course,
however, we meet a great impediment to the navigation of the river,
and consequently to the civilization and commercial development of the
regions beyond. In thirty-five miles the stream descends twelve hundred
feet in a series of rapids and cataracts over a rock-encumbered bed and
between sheer walls of cliff.

Beauty and use are badly adjusted on the Shiré. The scenery of the
unnavigable portion of the river is full of singular and romantic
beauty. In the picturesque diversity of its charms of crag and forest
and rushing water it is scarcely equalled by any other part of Africa.
Monotony, on the other hand, has set its stamp on the banks of the
useful, slow-flowing river beneath and above. Yet the ascent of one
hundred and fifty miles from the Zambesi to the cataracts is not without
its attractions. The landscape is intensely and characteristically
African. If the river is fringed on either shore by tall and sombre
reeds, the majestic mountains that bound the Shiré valley are always in
sight. A dense tropical vegetation covers these hills to the very tops,
except that patches of lighter tint show where the hands of the natives
have cleared the ground for the cultivation of crops of cotton, sorghum,
or maize; for these healthy uplands, above the reach of the mosquito and
the deadly marsh fog, and safe also, in some degree, from the ravages
of the kidnapper, are inhabited by an industrious race, the Manganjas,
who have made no small progress in agriculture and native iron and metal

This whole country is favorable for the raising of cotton, which here
grows a larger and finer staple, it is said, even than in Egypt. Every
Manganja village has its cotton patch, where sufficient is grown for the
use riot only of the community but of neighboring tribes. The demand
certainly is not large, the requirements of Africans in the matter of
clothing being modest——or immodest, if you will. There is a tribe, for
instance, on the Lower Zambesi, whose name, being interpreted, means the
“Go-Nakeds.” The full costume of a “Go-Naked” is a coat——of red ochre.
Livingstone met one of their men of rank once, and found his court suit
represented by a few beads and a pipe two feet long. Unfortunately
the Manganja, along with their ingenuity and industry as weavers,
blacksmiths, and farmers, are inordinately fond of beer and smoking, and
are great in the arts of brewing and tobacco-manufacturing. With all
these disadvantages, however, it is pleasant to find, in one corner at
least of Africa, a race with both the skill and the inclination to work,
and a native industry ready to spring up into large proportions so soon
as it receives a little encouragement.

After the Zambesi has been left behind, a great mountain called
Morumbala, four thousand feet in height, bounds for many miles the
view on the right as we ascend the Shiré. Beyond it we reach one of the
marshes or old lake-beds which form one of the features of this valley.
The bounding lines of hills make each a semicircular curve, and inclose
a vast morass, through the centre of which the river drains slowly
between dripping walls of sedge and mud. No human inhabitant can dwell
in these impenetrable swamps; but they are far from empty of life. Great
flights of wild geese, ducks, waders, and other water-fowl abound here in
prodigious numbers, and rise from the brake at the noise of the passing
boat or steamer——for already steamers now ply on the waters of the river
below and the great lake above.

The discovery of the lake was due to Livingstone who had heard of
the “Great Water” somewhere to the north of the Zambesi and far amid
the mountains of the Shiré. His first attempt to reach it was a
failure, through reticence of the people respecting it and the natural
difficulties he encountered. But his worst enemy was his guide who misled
him until all were completely lost. The party were in a desperate strait.
Suspicion of treachery filled every bosom except Livingstone’s. One of
his faithful Makololos came up to him, and remarked, in a matter-of-fact
way, “That fellow is taking us into mischief. My spear is sharp. There is
no one here. Shall I cast him into the long grass?” A gesture of assent,
or even silence, and the unlucky guide would have been run through the
body; but Livingstone was not the man to permit blood to be spilt, even
on an apparently well-grounded suspicion of treachery. After all, it
turned out to be merely a blunder, and no treachery. The party were led
safely to the margin of the “great lake” of the district——the elephant
marsh that they had passed some time before while ascending the river!

The second trip resulted in a discovery of an inland sea, though not
the one they were in search of. Climbing over the shoulder of the high
mountains east of the Shiré, the party came in sight of Lake Shirwa,
lying in an isolated, pear-shaped basin, nearly two thousand feet above
sea-level. Magnificent mountain scenery surrounds the lake, the waters
of which, contrary to the rule in Central Africa, are salt, or rather
brackish. Although the area of Shirwa is large, it is but a mill-pond
compared with Nyassa and some of the other African lakes. Yet, girt in
though it is with hills, it shows to one standing near its southern end
a boundless sea-horizon towards the north. Opposite on the eastern shore
a lofty range rises to a height of eight thousand feet above sea-level,
while behind, the table-topped Mount Zomba, only one thousand feet lower,
dominates the Shiré valley.

All this mountainous mass seems habitable, and, in fact, is inhabited
to its very summits; and its temperate climate, healthful breezes, and
freedom from malaria and mosquitoes, have led to its being chosen as
the site of the Church of Scotland mission to the Nyassa country——their
station, Blantyre, being named after the Scottish village where
Livingstone first saw the light.

In ascending to the Nyassa, the opposite or western side of the Shiré is
generally chosen, and travellers prefer to make a wide détour into the
healthy Manganja uplands to struggling through the rocky, broken, and
wooded country through which the river tears its impetuous way. It is
delightful to breathe the bracing air of these high plains after escaping
from the humid, stifling atmosphere of the valley. The change of scenery
and climate puts a new life into the veins of the traveller. Many novel
views of African life come under his notice among the Manganja highlands.
The path up the long ascent is toilsome, but the eye is cheered by the
glorious views of the deep valley lying below and the blue domes and
peaks that rise ahead. The country is open and park-like, full of grand
forest trees and flowing streams.


In the evening we halt at a Manganja village and receive a
hearty——perhaps an uproarious——welcome. The villages are surrounded by
thick-set hedges of the poisonous euphorbia; and however busy at work
or at feasting the inhabitants are inside, a guard is always kept on
vigilant watch at the entrance, to give warning if a foraging band of
Mazitu heave in sight in the mountains, or the white robes of a party of
Arab slave-hunters are seen ascending the valley. When it is known that
it is friends who are approaching, the villagers are not long in making
amends for the shyness of their first greetings. Mats of reeds and bamboo
are spread for the wayfarers under the shade of the banian tree at the
“boalo,” an open space for the public entertainment of strangers at one
end of the village, the favorite spot for lounging and smoking, and
where on moonlight nights the young people indulge in singing and dancing
and their elders in hard drinking bouts. The whole community troop out
to see the white visitors, who are regarded with just such a mixture
of curiosity and fear as a company of Red Indians would be looked upon
by English rustics. Presents are exchanged with the chief, and then a
brisk trade sets in, the villagers bartering food and articles of native
manufacture for beads, looking-glasses, cloth, and other surprising
products of Europe. Generally there follow dancing, pombe-drinking, and
serenading in honor of the visitor, a homage which the latter is often
glad to escape from by strolling out for a night-hunt for elephant
or other game, or to note down by the clear light of the moon his
observations for the day.

Soon it is time to descend into the valley, where the Shiré is found
again flowing deep and slow, as below the falls, and opening up into
a marshy lakelet, Pamalombe, with a strong family resemblance to the
swamps of the lower river. It ought to be recorded, in justice to African
honesty, that when the _Ilala_, the first steamer that floated on the
Nyassa, was conveyed in pieces from the Lower to the Upper Shiré by a
band of some hundreds of porters, under Captain Young’s leadership, it
was found, on putting the little craft together, that not a single bolt
or screw had been mislaid or stolen, though the temptation to fling away
or decamp with their burdens must have sorely tried the carriers.

Even when almost within sight of the Nyassa. Livingstone could hear
nothing of the goal of which he was in search. The chief of the “Great
Lake” village on the Shiré told him that the river stretched on for
“two months’ journey,” and then emerged from two rocks that towered
perpendicularly to the skies. “We shall go and see these wonderful
rocks,” said the doctor. “And when you see them,” objected his Makololo
companions, “you will just want to see something else.” Next day they
continued their march, and before noon came in sight of the lake.

Like the Tanganyika and Albert Lakes, Nyassa is a long and comparatively
narrow body of water lying in a deep depression of the plateau of Central
Africa. From the outlet of the Shiré one can sail on its waters for
more than three hundred miles towards the equator; but it is nowhere
more than sixty miles in width, and in some places less than half that
distance across. It resembles the more northerly lakes, the Albert Nyanza
and the Tanganyika, but especially the latter, in its general shape and
direction; and it was for many years a favorite theory with “closet
geographers” that the three lakes formed one continuous sheet of water.
Such an attenuated “river-sea,” fifteen hundred miles in length and with
no breadth to speak of, would have been a new thing in nature, and would,
besides, have been an extremely useful factor in opening up Africa.
Unfortunately, like other pretty theories, it did not stand the test of
actual examination; and we have seen that the three lakes form parts of
three different though not disconnected systems.

The shores of Nyassa seem to be overhung on all sides by tall mountains,
although near the southern end there is generally a margin of more
level country between the bases of the hills and the lake. As we
proceed northwards, the distinctive features of the lake shores become
more pronounced and majestic. The strip of plain narrows until it
disappears. The range increases in altitude and approaches nearer, the
rocky buttresses spring directly from the water, and the torrents that
rush down their sides plunge in cascades into the lake; and the extreme
northern end is encircled by dark mountains, whose frowning tops are
ten thousand feet or more above sea-level. But when we ascend from the
sweltering western margin of the lake to the cool and breezy heights that
look down on it, we find that instead of being on the summit of a range
of mountains we are only on the edge of a wide table-land. There is no
steep slope corresponding to that which we have ascended so toilsomely,
only a gentle incline towards the Zambesi.

On his last great expedition to Africa, Dr. Livingstone passed round
the southern end of the lake, and, ascending the table-land, traced the
water-shed between the lake and the streams flowing to the westward,
until he descended into the valley of the Chambesi, and began that
investigation of the Congo which is hereafter more fully described. The
contour of the country reminded him strongly of that of Southern India.
There was the flat country covered with thick jungle and tiger-grass,
succeeded by dense forest, gradually thinning away to clumps of
evergreens as the higher levels are reached, the scattered masses
of boulders, the deeply-trenched “nullahs” or water-courses, and all
the other familiar features of the fine scenery of the Ghauts, while
the tableland above resembled closely the high plains of the Deccan.
But what a contrast in the social and industrial condition of the two
countries! Instead of seeing at every step, as in India, the traces of a
long-founded civilization and a race of industrious tillers of the soil
dwelling in peace and security under the strong arm of the law, we meet
only with anarchy, misery, and barbarism.

The whole of this region is a hunting-ground of the Mazitu or Mavitu
Zulus, whose only business is war and pillage. The wretched inhabitants
of these hills dwell in constant apprehension of their raids. On no
night can they sleep even within the shelter of their well-guarded
stockades with the assurance that the Mavitu will not be upon them ere
morning. Originally weak in numbers, this tribe has gathered strength
by amalgamating with themselves the clans they have conquered. The
terror which their deeds have inspired has been heightened by their
wild and fantastic dress and gestures as they advance to battle, and by
their formidable weapons. They carry the long Zulu shield and both the
flinging and the stabbing assegai. Their hair is plumed with feathers,
and their bodies painted in fiendish devices with red and white clay.
So abject is the fear entertained for these redoubtable champions among
the surrounding tribes, that the mere mention of their name is enough to
make a travelling party take to their heels. Livingstone found this a
constant source of annoyance and delay. Twice it was the cause of reports
of his death being brought home. On the last occasion, the Johanna
men——natives of the Comoro Isles——who formed his escort, were seized with
the infectious panic, and, abandoning him in a body, brought down to the
coast the story of the explorer having been murdered in the interior. The
falsity of their report was only ascertained after Mr. Edward Young had
made a special expedition to the Nyassa, and learned on the spot that the
intrepid missionary, in spite of the cowardly desertion of his followers,
was safe and well, and still pushing forward towards his goal.

In one respect, if in no other, the Zulu “Rob Roys” of these hills have
a feeling in common with the travellers and missionaries who have found
their way to the Nyassa countries——they are the inveterate enemies of
the slave-hunters, and will not permit these gentry to practice the
arts of kidnapping and murder within reach of their spears. The eastern
side of the Nyassa basin, on the other hand, is one of the principal
scenes of the slave-traders’ operations. In conjunction with predatory
negro tribes, such as the Ajawa on the left bank of the Shiré, they have
made a wilderness of all the country between the Nyassa and the Indian
Ocean. Nothing can exceed the waste and havoc they have wrought in this
beautiful and fruitful land. The books of the explorers are full of
details of almost incredible atrocities committed under their eyes, and
which they were powerless to prevent. Whole populations have been swept
into the slave-gangs and hurried down to the coast, leaving the country
behind them a desert, and their path marked by the skeletons of those who
have succumbed to exhaustion or the cruelty of their brutal drivers. The
miserable remnant of the population roost in trees, or seek shelter in
the deepest recesses of the forest: while the jungle overruns the fields
of maize, cotton, manioc, and sorghum and the charred ruins of their

In Livingstone’s Journals we come upon such entries as: “Passed a slave
woman shot or stabbed through the body; a group, looking on, said an
Arab had done it that morning in anger at losing the price he had given
for her, because she was unable to walk.” “Found a number of slaves
with slave sticks (logs six feet long with a cleft at one end in which
the head of the unfortunate is fastened) abandoned by their master from
want of food; they were too weak to speak or say where they had come
from.” “It was wearisome to see the skulls and bones scattered about
everywhere; one would fain not notice them, but they are so striking
as one trudges along the sultry path that it cannot be avoided.” This
evidence is abundantly supported by the statements of other observers.
Consul Elton describes passing a caravan of three hundred slaves from
the Nyassa, while travelling through the clove and gum-copal forests on
the Mozambique coast. “All,” he says, “were in wretched condition. One
gang of lads and women, chained together with iron neck-rings, was in
a horrible state, their lower extremities coated with dry mud and torn
with thorns, their bodies mere frameworks, and their skeleton limbs
slightly stretched-over with parchment-like skin. One wretched woman
had been flung against a tree for slipping her rope, and came screaming
to us for protection, with one eye half out, and her face and bosom
streaming with blood. We washed her wounds, and that was the only piece
of interference on our part with the caravan, although the temptation was
strong to cast all adrift, and give them at any rate a chance of starving
to death peaceably in the woods.” Can it be wondered at that the pioneers
of civilization and Christianity in these regions have sometimes been
carried away by their feelings, and at the risk of ruining their whole
plans have forcibly interfered between these Arab miscreants and their

During the period to which Consul Elton’s accounts apply, it was computed
that the Lake Nyassa region supplied some fifteen thousand slaves
annually to the markets of Kilwa and other coast towns. Dr. Livingstone
is convinced from his own observations, that, so far as regards the Shiré
country, not a tenth of those who are captured survive the horrors of the
land journey. It may be wondered how this waste of human life can go on
and the country not to be completely depopulated. In spite, however, of
their terrible losses, there is still a large population settled on the
Nyassa. They have been chased down from the hills by the Mavitu and the
slaver, and are huddled together on the lake margin, where their enemies
can swoop down and make them an easy prey.

This dense population is, however, only found towards the southern end
of Nyassa. Further north, the Mavitu have taken possession of the shore
as well as the hills, and practice with equal success the vocation of
pirates on the water and of robbers on land. An expedition in this
direction was, till lately, certain to be attended with no small
excitement and clanger. If the journey were made by land, the travellers
were liable to be surprised at some point where the road was more rocky
and difficult than usual, by the apparition of a wild-looking crew
starting up from behind boulder or tree, and advancing with brandished
spears and unearthly yells. White explorers are not accustomed to turn
and flee at the first alarm. They stand, quietly awaiting the attack;
and the Mavitu disconcerted at conduct so utterly unlike what they had
calculated upon, run away themselves instead. If the excursion is made
by water, a crowd of boats, pulled by swift rowers, will perhaps be seen
putting out from a secluded bight, or from behind a wooded promontory,
and giving chase to the strangers, with loud outcries to stop. The
navigators of this inland sea, however, are missionaries, merchants and
men of peace. They have no desire to do harm to their savage pursuers,
and, secure in the speed of their little steamer and the superior range
of their guns, they can afford to laugh at the attempts to capture them.

[Illustration: STORM ON LAKE NYASSA.]

Much more serious is the danger arising from the sudden and furious
storms that sweep down upon the lake from the gullies of its encircling
hills. Livingstone narrowly escaped shipwreck on its waters, and from his
experiences of it proposed to have Nyassa named the “Lake of Storms.”
An old seaman of his party, who had been over the world, and at home
had spent many a squally night off the wild coasts of Connaught and
Donegal, said he had never encountered such waves as were raised in a
few minutes by the tornadoes on the Nyassa. Succeeding voyagers——Young,
Elton, Cotterill, Drs. Laws and Stewart, of the Scottish missions——report
similar experiences. Mr. Cotterill’s little craft, the _Herya_, a present
from the Harrow boys, was driven ashore on the western coast, June
1877, and he lost his journals, goods, and medical stores, saving only
one bottle of quinine, which, remembering the fate of Livingstone and
Mackenzie, he threw ashore as he neared the breakers in the darkness. The
most dreaded waves on the Nyassa come rolling on in threes, “with their
crests,” says Livingstone, “streaming in spray behind them.” A short lull
follows each charge; and then another white-maned trio come rushing on
and threaten to ingulf the voyagers and their frail bark.

A curious natural phenomenon has been noticed by most observers on the
Nyassa. A light blue cloud will be observed floating for many miles over
the surface of the lake, like the trailing smoke of some distant fire.
When it is reached, we discover that it consists of nothing else but
myriads of insects, of a species peculiar to the region, and known as
the “kungo fly.” So dense is the mass that immense quantities of them
are caught by the natives and pounded into cakes, resembling in size
and shape a “Tam o’Shanter” bonnet. They are not particular as to what
they eat, these hunger-bitten natives of the Nyassa shores. Neither are
they unreasonably extravagant in the matter of dress, some of the tribes
absolutely dispensing with clothes. Their notion of making up for their
scanty attire by liberally anointing their bodies with rancid fish oil
and hippopotamus fat, and smearing themselves with fancy designs in red
and white clay, does not recommend them to the European eye and nostril.
From our point of view, too, their attempts at decoration by means of
tattooing are in nowise improvements, the result being to give their
faces and limbs the appearance of being thickly studded with pimples.
The most hideous device of all, however, is the “pelele,” or lip ring,
an ornament without which no Nyassa belle would dream of appearing in
public. This consists of a broad ring of tin or stone, an inch or more
in diameter, inserted by slow degrees into the upper lip, causing it
to stand out at right angles to its natural direction, and revealing
beneath the rows of teeth sharpened to fine points like those of a saw.
The native ladies of rank sometimes have a corresponding ring in the
under lip, with the result that while the wearers of the single “pelele”
can only lisp, the ladies of fashion are scarcely able to speak at all.
Considering that these poor people have not been lavishly endowed with
natural charms, the effect of their duck-like mouths may be imagined.
Some handsome faces may, however, be seen among the natives of the
Nyassa, and many of them, it has been observed, have regular Jewish
or Assyrian features. Dr. Livingstone saw one man who bore a striking
resemblance to a distinguished London actor in the part of the “Moor of
Venice,” while another was the exact counterpart, in black, of the late
Lord Clyde.

The magnificent alpine country at the north end of the lake is, as yet,
comparatively unknown. The sole spot where there is any level ground is a
great elephant marsh. Here Elton and his companions counted no fewer than
three hundred of these noble animals standing knee-deep in the swamp,
the elders lazily swinging their trunks and fanning themselves with
their huge ears; while the juniors of the herd disported themselves in
their elephantine way, rolling luxuriously in the mud, or tearing down
branches of trees in the riotous enjoyment of their enormous strength.

Elton’s party enjoyed several days of most exciting elephant-stalking
in the neighboring hills. Sallying out one morning into a part of the
forest where the great brutes were known to abound, the herd was at
length sighted; two or three of the elephants dozing under the shade
of some trees, others engaged in munching branches, or shaking the
boughs and picking up one by one with their trunks the berries that were
scattered below. They were soon aroused from this delightful Elysium of
rest and enjoyment by the hunters, who had crept up to within ten or
fifteen yards unseen. Singling out the biggest elephant, a huge tusker,
who stood blinking contemplatively under the shadow of a tree, Elton and
his companion, Mr. Rhodes, each planted a bullet behind his shoulder.
He trumpeted, staggered forward, tripped over into the rocky bed of a
“nullah,” scrambled out on the other side, and there receiving another
two shots, crashed down lifeless into a second dry water-course.

[Illustration: AN ELEPHANT CHARGE.]

Chase was then given up a mountain gorge to the next largest elephant
which deliberately charged back at Elton, the nearest of her pursuers.
Allowing her to approach to within about three yards, he gave her a
forehead shot, which turned her round; and then Rhodes “doubled her
over like a rabbit.” The retreating herd were pursued to the top of the
pass, where the last of the line, a big bull elephant, receiving a shot,
stumbled and fell, while Elton, with “the pace on,” nearly fell on the
top of him; “and,” he says, “holding my Henry rifle like a pistol, I shot
him again at the root of the tail. The shock was irresistible; over the
edge of the ravine he went, head foremost, the blood gushing out of his
trunk, and his fall into space only broken by a stout acacia, in which
he hung suspended, his fore and hind legs on either side——dead.” Still
the hunt was continued, and on a second rocky slope a wounded elephant
was found laboring up, supported and helped on by a friend on either
side, while a fourth urged him on from behind with his forehead. This
last faced round, and stood defiantly at bay, his ears “spread-eagled.”
Elton’s last cartridge missed fire; Rhodes shot; a tremendous report
followed; the elephant, with a groan, plunged over a cliff, and hung
suspended by a thorn-tree in mid-air, like his predecessor; while Mr.
Rhodes, casting his gun from him, ran down the declivity to the river,
his face streaming with blood; and the survivors of the herd, toiling
painfully up the mountain-side, disappeared over the sky-line, “uttering
loud grumblings of disapprobation and distress.” The chamber of the rifle
had burst, cutting Mr. Rhodes severely in the face; and his companion
endeavored to console him by telling him that many a man at home would
have given one thousand pounds for such a day’s sport, and suffered the
cut in the forehead into the bargain.

Such sport is, however, getting every day more difficult to obtain; for
this lordly animal, the true “king of beasts,” is retreating before the
march of civilization, and becoming gradually more scarce even in the
African solitudes. This is not to be wondered at, considering the vast
numbers——probably from fifteen thousand to twenty thousand——that are
killed annually for the sake of their ivory.

It may be remarked that Elton’s escape from the elephant’s charge was
a remarkably close one. There is only one other instance known of the
“forehead shot” being effectual in stopping the course of an African
elephant. This adventure happened in the Abyssinian highlands to Sir
Samuel Baker. That mighty hunter was at the time new to African sport,
and imagining that planting a bullet in the forehead, the favorite method
with hunters of the wild elephant of India and Ceylon, would be equally
effectual in the case of his big-eared kinsman of Central Africa, he
awaited the charge of an elephant until she was within five yards of the
muzzle of his rifle. The bullet happened to strike a vulnerable spot in
the skull, and dropped the animal dead; but the lookers-on for several
moments regarded the hunter as a dead man.

In both these cases the elephant shot was a female, which possesses in a
less marked degree than the male the solid structure of skull that, along
with their immense ears, convex foreheads, and greater size, distinguish
the African from the Asiatic variety. When not struck in a vital spot,
the elephant is remarkably tenacious of life; and Livingstone tells how
he fired twelve bullets into one that had fallen into a hole, and had
about a hundred native spears sticking in him, and next morning found
that the animal had scrambled out and escaped into the forest. Perhaps
the most perilous experience that ever befell a white hunter when after
elephants occurred to Mr. Oswell, far to the southward, on the banks of
the Zouga. Chasing an elephant through a thorny thicket on horseback, he
suddenly found the animal had wheeled round and was bearing straight down
upon him. Attempting to turn his horse, he was thrown, face downwards,
before the elephant. Twisting round, he saw the huge fore foot about
to descend on his legs, parted them, and drew in his breath, expecting
the other foot to be planted on his body; but saw the whole of the
“under-side” of the huge creature pass over him, and rose unhurt to his
feet, saved almost by miracle.

But this has carried us far away from the elephant marsh, from the
borders of which Messrs. Elton, Cotterill, Rhodes, and Hoste made their
ascent of the mountain barrier of Nyassa. The lowest pass over the
Konde, or Livingstone range, is eight thousand eight hundred feet above
sea-level; and the ascent embraces every variety of climate and scenery,
from stifling tropical swamp to breezy moorlands of fern and bracken,
carpeted with wild thyme, daisies, dandelions, and buttercups, like our
hills at home. From the top a magnificent landscape is viewed. Elton
says: “The country we have passed through is without exception the finest
tract in Africa I have yet seen. Towards the east we were walled in with
mountains rising to a height of from twelve to fourteen thousand feet,
inclosing undulating, well-watered valleys, lovely woodland slopes,
hedged-in fields, and knolls dotted with native hamlets. There is nothing
to equal it either in fertility or in grazing land in Natal, the reputed
‘garden of South Africa.’ It is the most exceptionally favorable country
for semi-tropical cultivation I have ever seen.”

A serious obstacle to the development of this beautiful highland region
is probably the exceptionally deadly climate of the country through
which it must be approached. Already many precious lives have been
sacrificed in the attempt to open up the Nyassa. Livingstone got here
his “death-sentence.” The German Roscher, who, travelling in the guise
of an Arab from the east coast, viewed the lake only two months later
than the great missionary, was basely murdered at a little village near
its shores. Bishop Mackenzie is buried in the Shiré swamps; and near him
lie nearly the whole staff of the University Mission to this region,
all stricken down with marsh fever. Thornton, the intrepid companion
of Livingstone on his first visit to the Nyassa, after having ascended
half-way up the snow-capped mountain Kilimandjaro, far to the northward,
returned to this quarter, only to die at the foot of the Murchison
Rapids. Mrs. Livingstone, the devoted wife of the missionary, rests
under a gigantic baobab tree a little way below the Shiré mouth; and
near her grave is that of Kirkpatrick, of the Zambesi Survey Expedition
of 1826. Another baobab, in Ugogo, shades the resting-place of Consul
Elton, whom we have just seen full of life and hope, at the head of the
pass overhanging the north end of the lake. Only a few marches to the
northward of the pass, while toiling across a droughty plain, and weak
from hunger and fever, he succumbed to sunstroke, and a most useful
and promising career closed at the early age of thirty-seven. Still
younger was Mr. Keith Johnston, who died from dysentery, while leading
an expedition from Zanzibar territory to Nyassa. Dr. Black is buried on
Cape Maclear, the rocky promontory cleaving the southern end of the lake,
where the Free Church of Scotland Mission Station of Livingstonia has
been planted; and the little cemetery contains many other graves of white

The Scottish mission stations on the Shiré and Lake Nyassa are not
the only outposts which Christianity has planted in the far interior
of the “Dark Continent.” Similar colonies, for the moral improvement
and industrial training of the natives of Africa, have been placed on
the shores of the Victoria Nyanza and Tanganyika by the London and
University Missionary Societies. The example is being followed by
similar associations in France and America; and the Zambesi country has
been mapped out for a renewal of the long-abandoned work of the Jesuit
fathers. Science, commerce, and philanthropy have enlisted by the side
of religion in the task of opening up Africa. The chief outlets of the
slave-trade have at length, it is hoped, been closed, thanks mainly to
the efforts of England, and the hearty co-operation of the government of
Portugal, Egypt and Zanzibar.

                           AFRICAN RESOURCES.

Though the coasts of Africa lie within sight of the most civilized
countries, its depths are still mysteries. Though the valley of the Nile
was, in the earliest ages of history, the seat of commerce, the arts and
sciences, it is only now that we read of a new source for that sacred
stream in Lake Edward Nyanza.

This wonderful continent, the Negroland of our school books, the marvel
of modern times as the light of exploration pierces its forests and
reveals its lakes, rivers and peoples, is a vast peninsula, triangular
in shape, containing 12,300,000 square miles. This vast area renders a
conception of its geographic details difficult, yet by taking several
plain views of it, the whole may be brought out so that one can grasp
it with a fair degree of intelligence. One way to look at it is to
regard the entire seacoast as the rind of the real Africa. Follow its
Mediterranean boundary on the north, its Red Sea and Indian Ocean
boundary on the east, its Atlantic Ocean boundary on the south and west,
and the lowland rind is always present, in some places quite thin, in
others many miles thick.

This rind, low, swampy, reedy, channeled by oozy creeks, or many mouthed
rivers, is the prelude to something wholly different within. On the
north, north-east and north-west, we know it introduces us to the barren
Sahara. In all other parts it introduces us to an upland Africa, which,
for height and variety of plateaus, has no equal in the world. These
plateaus are variegated with immense mountain chains, like those of
the Atlas, the Moon, the Kong, the Gupata, and those just revealed by
Stanley extending between the two great lakes Albert Nyanza and Victoria
Nyanza, and to a height of 18,000 feet, fully 6,000 of which are clad
in perpetual snow, even though lying under the Equator. Here too are
those vast stretches of water which vie in size and depth with the lake
systems of any other continent, and which feed mighty rivers, even though
evaporation be constantly lifting their volume into the tropical air.
No traveler has ever looked with other than awe upon those superb lakes
Albert Nyanza, Edward Nyanza, Victoria Nyanza, Tanganyika, Leopold II.,
Nyassa, Bangweola, and dozens of smaller ones whose presence came upon
him like a revelation. And then out of these plateaus, thousands of feet
high, run all those mighty rivers which constitute the most unique and
mightiest water system in the world——the Zambezi, the Congo, the Niger,
the Senegal and the Nile.

This would be Africa in a general sense. But in view of the importance
of this opening continent, we must get a fuller view of it. The Africa
of antiquity and of the Middle Ages extended from the Red Sea to the
Atlantic and from the Mediterranean to the land of the Berbers, and other
strange, if not mythical peoples. It embraced Egypt, Nubia and Abyssinia
on the east. On the north it was skirted by the Barbary States. But its
great, appalling feature was the great desert of Sahara, forbidden to
Greek or Roman, Persian or Egyptian, till the Arab came on his camel, and
with the flaming sword of Mohammed in hand, to pierce its waste places
and make traffic possible amid its sandy wastes.

South of the Western Sahara is a fairly defined section extending from
Timbuctoo to the Gulf of Guinea, or in other words nearly to the Equator.
It is divided by the Kong chain of mountains, and embraces the water
systems of the Senegal and Niger Rivers. This was the part of Africa
which first drew European enterprise after Portugal and Spain became the
world’s sailors, and began to feel their way toward the Cape of Good
Hope. Three hundred years ago it was what Central Africa is to-day, a
wonderland full of venturesome travelers, a source of national jealousy,
a factor in European politics, a starting point for a thousand theories
respecting colonization and of as many enterprises having for their
object the introduction of commerce, the arts and Christianity among the
natives, who were by no means as peaceably inclined as in the present
day. As other natives came to find out something of the commercial
value of the Senegal and Niger countries, they stepped in to get their
share of the honor and profit of possession, and so this part of Africa
was partitioned, till we find on the Atlantic, south of the Niger, the
British colony of Sierra Leone, the kingdoms of Ashantee and Dahomey,
the republic of Liberia, the coast towns of the Bight of Benin, and the
strong French possessions lying just north of the Congo and extending
indefinitely inland.

Back of this section, and extending south of the Sahara, to the
head-waters of the Nile, is the great central basin whose waters converge
in the vast estuary known as Lake Tchad. It may be somewhat vaguely
termed the Soudan region, which is divided into Northern and Equatorial
Soudan, the former being the seat of the recent uprising of the Mahdi,
and the latter the center of the kingdom which Emin Pasha sought to wrest
from Mohammedan grasp. Along the Indian Ocean coast, from Cape Guardafui
to Mozambique, is a lowland stretch from two to three hundred miles wide,
watered by small, sluggish rivers which find their way into the Indian

Passing down the eastern side of the continent, we come to the immense
basin of the Zambezi, second only in extent to that of the Congo,
stretching almost to the Atlantic coast, seat of mighty tribes like the
Macololos, teeming with commercial possibilities, and even now a source
of such envy between England and Portugal as to raise a question of war.
South of the Zambezi comes the great Kalahari desert as a balance to
the northern Sahara, and then that fringe of civilization embraced in
Transvaal, the Orange Free State, Cape Colony, and so around till the
Portuguese kingdoms of Benguela and Angola are reached, all of whose
waters run by short courses to the sea. These great natural divisions
comprise the entire area of the African continent except that vast
equatorial basin drained by the Congo.

This mighty region, the Central Africa of to-day, is now largely embraced
in the new Congo Free State. To the south of the mouth of the Congo is
the State of Angola, and to the north, the State of Congo, claimed by
the French. The great river was originally called the Zaire, and by
some the Livingstone. Its first, or ocean, section extends from Banana
Point to Boma, a distance of 70 miles, and is in fact an arm of the
sea. Thence, upward to Vivi, a distance of 40 miles, there is a deep,
broad channel, with a moderate current. Vivi is the head of the lower
river navigation, being at the foot of the cataracts, which extend for
over 200 miles through a system of cañons, with more than fifty falls of
various heights. They are known as Livingstone Falls, and have stretches
of navigable water between them. After the cataracts are passed, Stanley
Pool is reached, where are the towns of Leopoldville, Kinshassa and
others, founded recently as trading or missionary stations. The vertical
descent of the river from the broad, tranquil expanse of Stanley Pool
to the level at Vivi, is about 1,000 feet, and from thence to the sea
fully 250 feet more. Stanley Pool, or basin, is about 20 miles long and
nearly 10 broad, and is filled with low wooded islands, natural homes
for hippopotami, crocodiles, elephants, and all tropical animals. From
Leopoldville to Stanley Falls there is uninterrupted navigation, and
the distance is 1,068 miles, with a comparatively straight course and a
vertical descent of four inches to the mile. Stanley Falls 1,511 feet
above the sea level. The affluents of the river below Stanley Falls
present a navigable surface estimated at 4,000 miles. In the wide and
elevated portion of the river above Stanley Falls it is known as the
Lualaba. Its course is now nearly north, and it was this fact that
deceived Livingstone into the belief that he was on the Nile. This
portion, though abounding in vast lake stretches and rich in affluents,
is navigable only for shallow craft. It drains a fertile country whose
centre is Nyangwe, the best-known market town of Central Africa and the
capital of Tippoo Tib’s dominions, the conqueror of the Manyuema, and the
craftiest of all the Arab potentates in Central Africa.

To the east of the Upper Congo, or Lualaba, is a magnificent stretch
of grass country, extending to Lake Tanganyika, whose waters flow into
the Congo, making a descent of 1,200 feet in 200 miles. As the western
shores of that lake rise fully 2,500 feet, this region becomes a sort or
Switzerland in tropical Africa. North and east of Tanganyika, are the
Nile sources, in Lakes Albert, Edward and Victoria Nyanza——a fertile and
populous region, fitted by nature for her thriftiest and best peoples.
Thus we have Africa again mapped, and her grandest portion embraced
in the Congo State, with its 1,500,000 square miles, its countless
population, its abundance of navigable streams, its remarkably fertile
soil, its boundless forests, all its requisites for the demands of an
advanced civilization.


To the naturalist Africa opens a field for research equalled by no other
continent. The whole organic world offers no such number of giant animal
and plant forms. It unfolds five times as many quadrupeds as Asia, and
three times as many as the Americas. Its colossal hippopotami, huge
giraffes, infinite variety of antelopes, and water-bucks, the curious
diving sheep, or goat, called the Quichobo, long armed apes, fierce
sokos, and swarms of sprightly monkeys, excel those of Asia in size. That
mammoth bird, the ostrich, whose feathers delight our modern slaves of
fashion, is exclusively indigenous to Africa. The Arab may have brought
the camel from the deserts of Sinai, but Africa has made a home for
it. Africa is the habitat of the rhinoceros, elephant, lion, panther,
leopard, ounce, jackal, hyena, wolf, fox, dog, cat, bat, rat, hare,
rabbit, bear, horse, ass, zebra, sheep, with wool and without, goat,
buffalo, gazelle, cattle of all kinds, some of them the finest specimens
in nature, deer of the fallow type, which put to shame the sleek breeds
of European parks.

[Illustration: AFRICAN ANT-EATER.]


[Illustration: AFRICAN QUICHOBO.]

The birds are equally numberless as to variety. There are eagles, hawks,
flamingoes, kingfishers, many varieties of parrots, peacocks, partridges,
pheasants, widow and cardinal birds, weavers, cuckoos, doves, pigeons,
ducks, geese, and crown-birds, the plumage of the last being the most
beautiful of the feathered tribe. The reptilia embraces crocodiles,
the python, the boa and hundreds of smaller snakes, some harmless and
some highly venomous. The rivers and lakes swarm with fish, though the
variety is not so great as in more northern waters. The forests and the
earth swarm with termites and ants of great variety, which draw after
them a host of ant-eaters of the armadillo type; and at times spiders,
caterpillars, and armies of locusts infest the trees or darken the sun.
Insect life knows no limit in Africa——some the most beautiful, some
the most horrid. The tsetse fly is no less a torment to cattle than
the “devil of the road” is to the woe-begone traveler. And everywhere,
especially in tropical Africa, vegetation has a force and vigor peculiar
to that continent. Nature seems to rejoice in unfolding her strength
through the seeds deposited in the soil. “Some fifty and some an hundred
fold” is the law of increase, when the least care is given to planting
and cultivation. Maize produces two crops a year. Tree life is gigantic,
and the variety of wood infinite. Of the picturesque trees, the boabab,
or monkey bread-fruit tree, whose crown of green sometimes forms a circle
of over 100 feet, takes a front rank, followed by the ceiba, with its
stem of 60 feet and its rich crown of foliage extending fully 60 feet



All of torrid Africa revels in plants and fruits of the most nutritious
and medicinal quality, suited to the wants and well-being of the people.
There is both food and medicine in the fruits of the palm, banana,
orange, shaddock, pine-apple, tamarind, and the leaves and juice of the
boabab. The butter-tree gives not only butter, but a fine medicine. The
ground-nut yields in six weeks from the planting. The natives produce
for eating, wheat, corn, rice, barley, millet, yams, lotus berries, gum,
dates, figs, sugar, and various spices, and for drink, coffee, palm-wine,
cocoanut milk and Cape wine. No less than five kinds of pepper are known,
and the best indigo is produced, along with other valuable dyes. Cotton,
hemp and flax are raised for clothing.

It has always been a fiction that Africa contained more gold than any
other continent. The “gold coast” was a temptation to venturesome
pioneers for a long time. Precisely how rich in minerals the “dark
continent” is, remains to be proved. But it is known that iron abounds
in many places, that saltpetre and emery exist in paying quantities,
that amber is found on the coasts, and that diamonds are plenty in the
Kimberly region. That the continent is rich in useful minerals may be
taken for granted, but as these things are not perceptible to the naked
eye, time must bring the proof.

Various estimates have been put upon the population of Africa. Stanley
estimated the population of the Congo basin at 50,000,000. The Barbary
States we know are very populous. Africa has in all probability
contributed twenty-five millions of slaves to other countries within
two-hundred and fifty years without apparent diminution of her own

So she must be not only very populous but very prolific. It would be
safe to estimate her people at 200,000,000, counting the Ethiopic or
true African race, and the Caucasian types, which embrace the Nubians,
Abyssinians, Copts and Arabs. The Arabs are not aborigines, yet have
forced themselves, with their religion, into all of Northern and Central
Africa, and their language is the leading one wherever they have obtained
a foot-hold. The Berber and Shelluh tongues are used in the Barbary
States. The Mandingo speech is heard from the Senegal to the Joliba. On
the southwestern coast there is a mixture of Portuguese. Among the true
natives the languages spoken are as numerous as the tribes themselves.
In the Sahara alone there are no less than forty-three dialects. Mr.
Guinness, of London, president of the English Baptist Missionary Society
operating in Africa, says there are 600 languages spoken in Africa,
belonging principally to the great Soudanese group.

Of the human element in Africa, we present the summary given by Rev.
Geo. L. Taylor. He says:——“Who and what are the races occupying our New
Africa? The almost universally accepted anthropology of modern science
puts Japheth (the Aryans), Shem (the Semites), and Ham (the Hamites),
together as the Caucasian race or variety (not species) of mankind; and
makes the Ugrians, the Mongols, the Malays and the Negroes (and some
authorities make other divisions also) each another separate variety of
the one common species and genus _homo_, man.


“Leaving the radical school of anthropology out of the question, it
cannot be denied that the vast preponderance of conservative scientific
opinion is, at least, to this effect, namely: While the Berbers
(including the Twareks, Copts and Tibbus) are Hamitic, but differentiated
toward the Semitic stock, the true Negroes are also probably Hamitic, but
profoundly differentiated in the direction of some other undetermined
factor, and the Ethiopians or Abyssinians are an intermediate link
between the Caucasian Hamite and the non-Caucasian Negro, with also a
prehistoric Semite mixture from southern Arabia. Barth, whose work is a
mine of learning on the Soudan, concededly the best authority extant on
the subject, says that while the original population of the Soudan was
Negro, as was all the southern edge of the Sahara, nevertheless the
Negro has been crowded southward along the whole line by the Moor (a mixt
Arab) in the west, by the Berber (including both Twareks and Tibbus) in
the centre, and by the Arab in the east. Timbuctoo is a city of Berber,
not of Negro origin, founded before the Norman conquest of England,
since conquered by Moors, and now ruled by the Fulbé, or Fellatah, who
are neither Moor, Berber, Arab, nor Negro but a distinct race between
the Arab and Berber on the one side and the Negro stock on the other,
and whose language and physiognomy, and only semi-woolly hair, are
more Mongoloid or Kaffir than Negro; but who are the most intelligent,
energetic and rapidly becoming the most powerful people in the Soudan,
and whose influence is now felt from Senegambia to Baghirmi, through half
a dozen native states. In all the Niger basin only the Mandingo and the
Tombo countries about the head of the Joliba, or Niger, are now ruled by
pure Negro dynasties, the former being a splendid and capable jet-black
people, probably the finest purely Negro race yet known to Europeans.
In the central Soudan the Kanuri of Kanem and Bornu came to Kanem as a
conquering Tibbu-Berber stock over 500 years ago, and are now Negroid.
Farther east Tibbu and Arab are the ruling elements. Haussa, Sokoto and
Adamawa are now Fellatah States. The southward pressure of Moor, Twarek,
Tibbu and Arab is still going on; and the Fulbé, in the midst of the
native states, is rapidly penetrating them, subverting the few native
Negro dynasties still existing, and creating a new and rising race and
power that is, at any rate, not Negro. Thus ancient Nigritia is rapidly
ceasing to be “Negroland,” the races being more and more mixt, and newer
and ruling elements of Moor, Berber and Arab constantly flowing in. This
is the testimony of a long line of scholars from Barth down to Prof. A.
H. Keane, author of the learned article on “Soudan,” in the _Encyclopedia

“The people commonly considered Negro, in Africa, consist mainly of
three great stocks——the Nigritians of the Soudan, the great Bantu stock
reaching from the southern bounds of the Soudan to the southern rim of
the Zambesi basin, and the great Zulu stock. All these differ widely from
each other in physiology, languages, arts and customs. The Nigritians
are declining under Arab and Berber pressure; the Zulus, a powerful
and semi-Negro race, are rapidly extending their conquests northward
beyond the Zambesi into east central Africa. The Bantus are mainly
agriculturists. They fill the Congo basin, and extend eastward to the
Indian Ocean, between Uganda (which is Bantu) and Unyanyembé. They have
only recently been discovered, and are not yet much studied by Europeans.

[Illustration: BARI OF GONDOKORO.]

“But not all so-called Negroes are true Negroes. As for the eastern
highland regions of the two Niles, and thence southward from the
Abyssinians and the Shillooks at Khartoum to the Bari of Gondokoro and
the Waganda of Uganda——the Niam-Niam of Monbuttoo, the Manyuema of the
Lualaba, and the Makololo on the Zambesi——the ruling and paramount native
tribes are Negroid, but not Negro, unless our ordinary conception of the
Negro is a good deal revised. As Livingstone says of the Makololo, so of
all these, they are a “coffee-and-milk color;” or we may say all these
peoples are from a dark coffee-brown to brownish-white, like coffee,
depending on the amount of milk added. They are mostly tall, straight,
leanish, wiry, active, of rather regular features, fair agriculturists
and cattle-raisers, with much mechanical capacity, born merchants and
traders, and almost everywhere hold darker and more truly negro tribes
in slavery to themselves, where any such tribes exist. Where they have
none or few domestic animals for meat, they are frequently cannibals.
In the middle Congo basin the tribes are more truly Negro, and here the
true Negroes are freemen, independent and capable, though in a somewhat
low state of development. But, so far as now known, the true Negro, in
an independent condition, holds and rules but a comparatively small part
of Africa. As to capability for improvement these peoples——the Negroid
races at least and probably the Negroes——are as apt and civilizable as
any Caucasian or Mongolian people have originally been, if we consider
how their geographical and climatic isolation has hitherto cut them
off from the rest of the world and the world from them. We know that
if we leave Revelation out of the account, all Caucasian civilization,
whether Aryan, Semitic, or Hamitic, can be traced backward till, just
on the dawn of history, it narrows down to small clans or families,
with whom the light began and from whom it spread. We know the same,
also, as to the non-Caucasian Chinese and Nahua civilizations of Asia
and America. Had the spread of the germs of these civilizations been
prevented by conditions like those in Africa, who shall say that the
stage of development might not be about the same to-day? There seems to
be but one uncivilizable race——if, indeed, they are such——in Africa; and
that is the dwarfs. The Akka, found by Schweinfurth south of the Welle,
called themselves “Betua,” the same word as the “Batua” on the Kassai.
The dwarfs of the upper Zambesi call themselves by a similar word, and
so with the Bushmen in South Africa. Many things go to prove that these
dwarf nations are all one race, the diminutive remnants of a primeval
stock of one of the lowest types of man, who have never risen above the
hunter stage of life. They have been scattered, and almost exterminated,
by the incoming of the powerful Bantu stock, that is now spread from
the Soudan to Zululand. These dwarfs are the best living examples of
similar races once scattered over Europe and Asia, whose real existence
lies at the bottom of all the lore of fairies, brownies, elfs, gnomes,
etc. They constitute one of the most pregnant subjects of study in all
anthropology. They are seemingly always uncivilizable.”

In his “Africa in a Nutshell,” Rev. Geo. Thompson thus sketches the
country, especially the central belt:——

“The Central Belt of Africa——say from 15° north to 15° south of the
equator, about 2,000 miles in width——is, heavily-timbered, of the jungle
nature. There are numerous large trees (one to six feet through, and
50 to 150 feet high) with smaller ones, and bushes intermingled, while
vines of various kinds intertwine, from bottom to top, making progress
through them, except in paths, very difficult. Only experience can give
a realizing idea of an African forest——of the tangle, and the density of
its shade.

“While traveling through them, even in the dry season, when the sun
shines brightest, one cannot see or feel the warming rays. The leaves
drip with the dews of the night, and the traveler becomes chilled, and
suffers exceedingly.

“But the whole country is not now covered with such forests. They are
found in places, from ten to twenty-five miles in extent, where the
population is sparse, but the larger portion of the country has been
cleared off and cultivated; and, while much of it is in crops all the
time, other large patches are covered with bushes, of from one to three
years’ growth——for they clear off a new place every year. The farm of
this year is left to grow up to bushes two or three years, to kill out
the grass, and then it is cleared off again. Thus, in thickly settled
portions of the country, but little large timber is found, except along
rivers, or on mountains. Such is the country north of the Gulf of Guinea,
to near the Desert.

“The people are numerous, and the cities larger (the largest cities in
Africa; they are from one to six miles through), and much of the country
is under cultivation. And so of the central portion of Africa, in the
vicinity of Lake Tchad.

[Illustration: CHASING GIRAFFES.]

“But in that portion of Africa lying 500 miles south and north of the
Equator, and from the Atlantic Coast, 1,000 miles eastward, the jungle
and heavy forests are the most extensive, and towns farther between, and
not so large.

“This is the home of the gorilla, which grows from five to six feet high,
of powerful build, and with arms that can stretch from seven to nine
feet; a formidable enemy to meet. It is also the home of that wonderfully
varied and gigantic animal life——elephants, lions, leopards, zebras,
giraffes, rhinoceri, hippopotami, crocodile etc., which distinguishes
African Zoology from that of every other continent.

“This central belt of Africa is capable of sustaining a vast population.
It can be generally cultivated, and its resources are wonderful. The soil
is productive. The seasons are favorable, and crops can be kept growing
the year through.

“Rice, of three or four kinds and of excellent quality, Indian corn,
three kinds of sweet potatoes, beans, peanuts, melons, squashes,
tomatoes, ginger, pepper, arrowroot, coffee, sugar cane, yams, cocoa,
casada, and other grains and vegetables, besides all tropical fruits, are

“The coffee is a wild forest tree, growing seventy-five feet high and
eighteen inches through. It is also cultivated largely in Liberia. Many
of the people have from 100 to 1,000 acres of coffee trees.

“The Liberian coffee is of such superior quality and productiveness, that
millions of plants have been sent to Java and old coffee countries, for
seed. Its fame is already world-wide. The wild coffee is as good as any,
but the bean is smaller. And new settlements soon become self-supporting
by the culture of coffee. Sugar cane is also raised, and much sugar is
made in this colony. Many steam sugar mills are in operation on St.
Paul’s River and at other places.

“On the Gulf of Guinea the people are quite generally raising cotton and
shipping it to England. Hundreds of cotton presses and gins have been
bought, and used by them, and Africa will yet be the greatest cotton,
coffee and sugar country in the world. All nations can be supplied

“Cotton is cultivated, in small quantities, in widely-extended portions
of Africa, and manufactured into cloth which is very durable. They also
make leather of a superior quality.

“Gold, copper, coal, the richest iron ore in the world, and other
valuable metals are abundant; from them the natives manufacture their
tools, ornaments and many things of interest. Ivory, hides, gums, rubber,
etc., are abundant. It is said that 50,000 elephants are killed yearly,
for their ivory, in Africa.

“The country only needs development; and the many exploring parties
from Europe, who are penetrating every part, seeking trade, will aid in
opening its boundless treasures. Gold-mining companies are operating on
the Gulf of Guinea, with paying results.

“And the natives secure and sell to the merchants large amounts of gold,
in form of rough, large rings. They make fine gold ornaments, and wear
vast quantities.

“This trade with Interior Africa, so eagerly sought, will soon lead to
railroads, in different directions——from Liberia to the Niger, and across
to Zanzibar from South Africa; and in other directions. The work is
begun, and will not stop.

“The French and the English are planning for railroads in different
directions. The former are building one from Senegal to Timbuctoo.

“The nations of Europe are, to-day, in a strife to secure the best
locations for trade with this rich country. And soon there will be no
more ‘unexplored regions.’

“The coasts on the west and east are generally low and unhealthy. But the
interior is higher, and will be more suited to the white man.

“It is, in the main, an elevated table-land, from 1,000 to 6,000 feet
above the sea, variegated with peaks and mountains, from 3,000 to 20,000
feet high, snow-capped, and with valleys and broad plains, hot springs,
and salt pans, and innumerable springs, inlets and streams.

“In some regions, for a distance often to twenty miles, there is a
scarcity of water in the dry season. Other places are flat plains, which
are overflowed in the rainy season, so they cannot be inhabited or
cultivated, except in the dry season. And such localities are unhealthy.

“But by far the greater part of the country is capable of being inhabited
and cultivated——with an abundance of timber of many kinds, suitable for
all the purposes of civilization, for boats, houses, wagons, furniture
and implements——but all different from anything in America. Some kinds
are equal to fine mahogany.

“This central portion of Africa is blessed with numerous large lakes,
three large rivers, and many smaller.

“The Niger rises 200 miles back of Liberia, runs northeasterly, to near
Timbuctoo, then southward to the Gulf of Guinea. It is already navigated
for hundreds of miles by English steamers.

“In fourteen years the exports have increased from $150,000 to
$10,000,000; trading factories from two to fifty-seven; and steamers from
two to twenty, and other boats.

“The Binué is a large branch coming in from the eastward.

“And the Congo, rising nearly 15° south of the equator, runs through
various lakes, making a northward course for more than 1,000 miles, to
2-1/2° north of the equator, then bends westward and southwesterly to the
Atlantic; being from one to sixteen miles wide, and very deep; filled
with inhabited islands and abounding in magnificent scenery. The banks
along the rapids rise from 100 to 1,200 feet high. It freshens the ocean
for six miles from land, and its course can be seen in the ocean for
thirty-six miles.

“There are two series of rapids in it——a great obstacle to
navigation——but the desire for trade will overcome these.

“The first series of rapids commences about 100 miles from the sea, and
extends some 200 miles in falls and cascades——with smoother stretches
between——to Stanley Pool. There are thirty-two of these falls. From
thence is a broad, magnificent river, with no obstruction for nearly
1,000 miles, to the next series of rapids at Stanley Falls. From this,
again, is another long stretch of navigable river. It pours nearly five
times the amount of water of the Mississippi.

“Between Lake Bangweola and Stanley Pool, the Congo falls 2,491 feet;
between the pool and ocean, 1,147 feet, making 3,638 feet in all.

“The Nile falls over 1,200 feet between Victoria and Albert Lakes, and
2,200 from Albert to the sea.

“Most of the rivers which rise in the interior of Africa have heavy fall.

“Then there are numerous large rivers emptying into the Congo, on each
side, which can be ascended far into the interior. Those on the north
can be easily connected with the head waters of the Gaboon River, and
those on the south with the head waters of the Zambesi, emptying into the
Indian Ocean; and on the east, with Lake Tanganyika.

“It will be seen that the Congo River will be of vast importance in the
development of Africa. A railroad will soon be built around the falls, to
connect with the steamers above.

“The soil of Upper Congo is very rich, the forests are exceedingly
valuable, the climate quite favorable, and the people numerous and kind.

“A few years ago the trade of the Congo was only a few thousand dollars
yearly. It is now, so soon, from $10,000,000 to $20,000,000 a year.
Trading houses and steamers are multiplying.

“The Congo Valley contains over 5,000 miles of navigable river and lake.
The nations can be supplied from this region with cotton, coffee, sugar,
gum copal, ivory, rubber, valuable dyes, iron, gold, copper, and many
other things——when it shall be civilized and a market formed.

“Many are running to and fro, and knowledge is being rapidly increased in
those parts.

“Then there are the rivers Senegal, Gambia (navigable for 200 miles),
Sierra Leone, Calabar, etc.

“The lakes are numerous, from the size of Lake Michigan, or larger, to
those covering only a few square miles.

“Lake Tchad, in the centre of the continent, is nearly the size of Lake
Michigan, with marshy surroundings, from which as yet no outlet has been
discovered, though the Tshaddi, or River Binué, _may_ be found to be the
outlet of this lake.

“In Central East Africa is a lake system of vast extent. Victoria Nyanza
is about 250 miles long, surrounded mostly with hills and mountains, from
300 to 6,000 feet high. It contains many islands, and numerous large
rivers empty into it. It is nearly 4,000 feet above the sea, and, with
its rivers, constitutes the principal and most southern source of the
Nile. The equator crosses its northern end. It is nearly as large as Lake

“West of this, about 200 miles, is the Albert Nyanza, 400 miles long,
and 2,720 feet above the level of the sea. This receives the outlet of
the Victoria; and from this the Nile bursts forth, a large river, and
runs its course of nearly 3,000 miles to the Mediterranean Sea.

“Albert is nearly three times as large as Lake Erie.

“South and west of these two lakes are numerous smaller ones——some of
them very beautiful——all emptying into the Victoria Nyanza, or “Big

“South of these, and separated by a mountain ridge, is Lake Tanganyika,
380 miles long and very deep, from twelve to forty miles wide, surrounded
by mountains 2,000 to 5,000 feet high. It is 2,756 feet above the sea.
Till about 1875 it was an internal sea, receiving large rivers, but
having no outlet, as proven by Stanley, who circumnavigated it on purpose
to settle this point. But near midway, on the west, was a low place,
where the bank was only three feet above the water. And here, after
steadily rising for ages, it broke over, and cut a channel to the Congo,
into which it now empties, in a deep, rapid stream.

“West and south of this is a series of lakes, connected with the great
Congo River. The most southerly, in latitude 13° or 14°, is Bangweola,
about 175 miles long and sixty wide. (Dr. Livingstone, in his last
journey, crossed this from the north and died in the marsh on its
southern border, May 4, 1873.) This empties into Lake Moero, nearly 3,000
feet above the sea.

“North and west of this are a number of other lakes, all emptying into
and swelling the mighty Congo.

“Northeast of Victoria are other large lakes, as reported by the natives,
but not yet accurately delineated. Thomson has lately discovered one
6,000 feet above the sea.

“Southeast of Tanganyika, about 250 miles, is Nyassa Lake, 300 miles
long, first definitely described by Dr. Livingstone. This is 1,800 feet
above the sea. There is a small steamer on this lake——as also on Victoria
and Tanganyika. And steamers are briskly plying up and down the Congo.

“Ere many years there will be a railroad from Nyassa to Tanganyika——an
easy route——and from Zanzibar to the great lakes——a more difficult route.
The pressing demands of trade insure these results. A wagon road is
already partly constructed between the two lakes, making a speedier,
safer and easier route to the interior via Zambesi and Shiré Rivers,
Lakes Nyassa and Tanganyika, with a land carriage of only seventy-five
miles between the rapids on the Shiré and Lake Nyassa.”

That portion of Africa below the tropics, and known in general as South
Africa, has resources of animal, forest, soil, climate, water and mineral
which have proved inviting to Europeans, though there is nothing to
render them any more acceptable than similar features as found in other
sub-tropical or temperate latitudes, excepting, perhaps, the peculiar
mineral deposits in the Kimberly section, which yield diamonds of great
value, and a richness of animal life which formerly proved fascinating to
the hunter and adventurer.

[Illustration: NATIVE RAT TRAP.]

The belt extending clear across the continent from Angola and Benguela,
south of the Congo, to the mouth of the Zambesi, and which is a water
shed between the Congo basin and rivers running southward, till the
great valley of the Zambesi is reached, has all the peculiarities of
soil, climate, forest and people found in the Congo basin. Its tribes,
according to Pinto, are of the same general type as those further
north. The rivers abound in hippopotami and crocodiles, the forests in
antelope and buffaloes, elephants, lions and wild birds. There is the
same endless succession of wooded valleys and verdure clad plains, and
the same products under cultivation. The natives are if anything better
skilled in the uses of iron, and are more ingenious in turning it to
domestic account, as in the manufacture of utensils, traps and other
conveniences. They are natural herdsmen, dress better, at least more
fantastically, perpetuate all of the native superstitions, and are more
confirmed traders, having for a longer time been in remote contact with
the Portuguese influence penetrating the Zambesi, and extending inland
from Loanda and Benguela.

We therefore turn to Equatorial, or Central Africa, in quest of those
resources which are distinguishing, and which give to the continent its
real value in commercial eyes. And in so doing, there is no authority
superior to that of Stanley, whose opportunity for observation has been
greatest. We can readily detect in his narrative the enthusiasm of a
pioneer, but at the same time must feel persuaded that fuller and more
exact research, and, especially the supreme trial to which commercial
development puts all things natural, will far more than verify his first

[Illustration: AFRICAN HATCHET.]

This Africa is typed by the Congo Basin, which stretches practically
across Africa, interweaving with the Zambesi water system on the south
and the Nile system on the north. The Congo is the feature of its
basin, and the kernel of the greatest commercial problem of the age.
To understand it, is to understand more of African resource than any
other natural object furnishes. It has its maritime region, which is the
African rind before alluded to. This region extends from Banana Point
at the mouth of the great river to Boma, seventy miles from the sea,
and the river passes through it in the form of a broad deep estuary. At
Boma the hilly, mountainous region commences, the groups of undulations
rising gradually to a height of 2000 feet above the sea. The river is
still navigable in this region, up to Vivi, 110 miles from the sea,
though the channel is reduced to a width of 1500 yards. From Vivi to
Isangila, a distance of fifty miles, is the lower series of Livingstone
Falls. From Isangila to Manyanga is a navigable stretch of eighty-eight
miles. Then comes the upper series of Livingstone Falls, extending for
eighty-five miles, from Manyanga to Leopoldville, on Stanley Pool. This
practically brings the mighty flood through the mountainous region of 240
miles in width, and opens a navigable stretch of 1068 miles, extending
from Stanley Pool to Stanley Falls. From Stanley Falls to Nyangwe, in the
fruitful country of the Manyuema, a nation in themselves, and notorious
in Central Africa for their valor and cruelty in war, is a course of 385
miles, navigable for light craft. From Nyangwe to Lake Moero the river
course is 440 miles. This lake is sixty-seven miles long. Thence is a
river stretch of 220 miles to Lake Bangweola which is 161 miles long.
It then begins to lose itself in its head waters in the Chibalé Hills,
though its main affluent here, the Chambesi, has a length of 360 miles.
This gives a total length of main stream equal to 3034 miles. It divides
itself into five geographic sections; the maritime section, from the sea
to Leopoldville; the Upper Congo section, extending from Leopoldville
to Stanley Falls; the Lualaba (so called by Livingstone) section from
Stanley Falls to the Chambesi; the Chambesi, or head water section; and
the Tanganyika section.

The first section, which includes the really maritime and the
mountainous, is, in its lower part next to the sea, but thinly populated,
owing to the slave trade and the effect of internal wars. But the natives
are, as a rule, tractable and amenable to improvement and discipline.
They are industrious and perfectly willing to hire themselves as
porters. In its mountainous part, the country is composed of swells of
upland separated by gorges and long, winding water courses, showing that
the land has been gradually stripped for centuries of its rich loam by
the tropical rains. On the uplands are groves of palm and patches of
tropical forest. In the hollows are rich vegetable products, so thick as
to be impenetrable. The round-nut, palm-nut, rubber, gum-copal, orchilla,
and various other articles of commerce, are natural products of this


Through the second section the Congo sweeps in the shape of an ox-bow,
1068 miles, crossing the Equator twice. Here is that mighty system of
tributaries which more than double the navigable waters of the great
basin. On the south are the Kwa, navigable up to Lake Leopold II, a
distance of 281 miles; the Lukanga with its shores lined with shrewd
native traders; the Mohindu, navigable for 650 miles; the Ikelemba, seat
of the Bakuti tribe, navigable for 125 miles; the Lulungu, reported to
be more populous than the Congo, navigable for 800 miles; the Lubiranzi,
navigable for twenty-five miles.

On the north side is the Lufini, navigable for thirty miles; the Alima,
navigable for fifty miles; the Likuba, with fifty miles of navigation;
the Bunga, 150 miles; the Balui, 350, the Ubanga and Ngala, 450 miles,
together; the Itimbiri, 250 miles; the Nkukù, sixty miles; the Biyerre
ninety-six miles; the Chofu, twenty-five miles.

This section alone, therefore, gives a direct steam mileage of 5250
miles, and the rivers drain an area of over 1,000,000 square miles.
Stanley says the wealth of Equatorial Africa lies in this section. It is
cut by the Equator, whose rain-belt discharges showers for ten months in
the year. North and south from the Equator, the dry periods are longer.
The population of the section, Stanley estimates to be 43,500,000. His
observations were, of course, confined to the river districts, but other
travelers confirm his estimates. Weissman says of the Lubilash country,
“It is densely peopled and some of the villages are miles in length. They
are clean, with commodious houses shaded by oil-palms and bananas, and
surrounded by carefully divided fields in which, quite contrary to the
usual African practice, man is seen to till the fields while women attend
to household offices. From the Lubilash. to the Lumani there stretches
almost uninterruptedly a prairie region of great fertility, the future
pasture grounds of the world. The reddish loam, overlying the granite,
bears luxuriant grass and clumps of trees, and only the banks are densely
wooded. The rain falls during eight months of the year, from September to
April, but they are not excessive. The temperature varies, from 63° to
81°, but occasionally, in the dry season, falls as low as 45°.”

The southeastern portion of this section is, on the authority of Tippoo
Tib, who doubtless ranged it more extensively than any other man,
dotted with villages, some of which took him two hours to pass through.
The country is a succession of prairies and parks, of rare fertility
and beauty. On the north and northeast of this section is the residence
of the Monbuttus, Niam-Niams and Dinkas, all powerful tribes, living
in comparative peace, having neat villages surrounded by fruitful
plantations, lovers of the chase, rich in herds of fine cattle, skilled
in the manufacture of spears and utensils of iron, experts in pottery
making and ornamentation, light of form but wonderfully agile, a copper
rather than black color, and very numerous. Says Sweinfurth, “From the
Wellé river to the residence of the Monbuttu king, Munza, the way leads
through a country of marvellous beauty, an almost unbroken line of the
primitively simple dwellings extending on either side of the caravan
route.” The Niam-Niam country alone he estimates at 5400 square miles in
extent, with a population of 2,000,000 which would give the extraordinary
rate of 370 to the square mile.

Stanley’s own observation on the Mohindu and Itimbiri river fully
confirmed the story of Miyongo respecting the Lulungu, that the further
he traveled from the banks of the river the thicker he would find the

All of this immense section is capable of the richest and most varied
vegetable productions. True, until intercourse comes about by steam,
or otherwise, but little use can be made of these products, yet there
they are in abundance now, and susceptible of infinite additions under
the care of intelligent tillage. There is an almost infinite variety
of palms, the most useful of which is the oil-palm, whose nut supplies
the dark-red palm oil, which has proved such a source of wealth in the
Oil-river regions of the Niger country and on the west coast in general.
The kernel of these nuts makes an oil-cake which is excellent for
fattening and conditioning cattle. This palm towers in every forest grove
and beautifies every island in the rivers. In many places it constitutes
the entire forest, to the exclusion of trees of harder wood and sturdier
growth. As each tree yields from 500 to 1000 nuts, some idea of the
commercial value of each can be gathered.

Another valuable plant in commerce and one which abounds in this section
is the India rubber plant. It is of three kinds, all of them prolific,
and all as yet untouched. Stanley estimates that enough india rubber
could be gathered on the islands of the Congo and in the adjacent
forests on the shores, in one year, to pay for the construction of a
Congo railway. Then there are other gums, useful for varnishes, as the
white and red opal. These are gathered and treasured by the natives of
the fishing villages, and used as torches while fishing, but they know
nothing of their value in the arts. Vegetable oils are extracted from
the ground-nut, the oil-berry and the castor plant. The ground-nut oils
are used by the natives for lights, the extract of the oil-berry is used
for cooking, while the castor-oils are used as medicine, just as with
civilized people.


Whole areas of forest are covered with dense canopies of orchilla, useful
as a dye, and every village has a supply of red-wood powder. But in
nothing are the forests and plains of this immense section so remarkable
as in the variety and quality of the vegetation capable of producing
commercial fibres. Here are endless supplies of paper material, rope
material, material for baskets, mattings and all kinds of cloths, such as
we now make of hemp and jute.

The more industrious and ingenious tribes run to specialties in turning
luxuriant nature into account. The red-wood powder of Lake Mantamba is
counted the best. Iboco palm-fibre matting ranks as the jute textiles of
Scotland. The Irebu are the Japanese sun-shade and floor-mat makers. The
Yalulima are artists in the manufacture of double bells. The Ubangi are
the Toledo sword-makers of Africa. How bountiful their supply of iron is
remains to be ascertained, but it is presumably a plentiful mineral, and
its use among these people, not to say numerous other tribes, is evidence
that the stone age of Africa was past, long before the heathen of Europe
and America had ceased to strike fire by flints in their chilly caverns,
or crush one another’s skulls with granite tomahawks. The iron spears and
swords of some of these African tribes are models in their way, keen as
Damascus blades and bright as if mirrored on Sheffield emery wheels.

One of the comforts of civilization, the buffalo robe, is fast becoming
a thing of the past. Africa may yet furnish a supply, or at least a
valuable skin for tanning purposes, out of the numerous herds of buffalo
which are found everywhere in this great central section. The kings
and chiefs of the African tribes affect monkey skin drapery as royal
dresses. If they knew the favor in which similar dresses were held upon
our boulevards, they might take contracts to supply the fashionable
outside world for generations, and thereby enrich themselves. Our
tanneries, furrier-shops and rug-makers would go wild with delight over
African invoices of goat-skins, antelope hides, lion and leopard skins,
if annual excursions of traders and hunters could be sent to the Upper
Congo country, at the cost of a through passage on an express train. And
how our milliners would rejoice over the beauty and variety of bonnet
decorations if they could reduce to possession even a tithe of the
gorgeous plumage which flits incessantly through the forest spaces of
tropical Africa.

Then where in Africa is there not honey, sweet as that of Hybla or
Hymettus, with its inseparable product, bees-wax? Not all the perfumes
of Arabia nor of the Isles of the Sea can equal in volume and fragrance
the frankincense and myrrh of the Congo region. As to ivory, Stanley
estimates the elephant herds of the Congo basin at 15,000 in number,
each herd numbering twelve to fifteen elephants——a total of 200,000
giants, each one walking about with fifty pounds of ivory in his head,
or 10,000,000 pounds in all, worth in the rough $25,000,000, or when
manufactured, a sum sufficient to enrich a kingdom. Nor does he consider
this estimate too large, for he had met travelers who had seen as many
as 300 elephants in a single herd, and who had killed so many that their
carcasses blocked the stream they were crossing. Major Vetch had killed
twenty in one locality, and a missionary, Mr. Ingham, had, more in a
self-supporting than in a sporting spirit, shot twenty-five and turned
their tusks into money. For a century, the ivory trade has been an
important one on the eastern coast of Africa, yet the field of supply has
only been skirted.


But civilization must tap and destroy this source of wealth, unless parks
could be preserved and elephants reared for the sake of their ivory.
Wonderful as are his figures respecting this resource, Stanley regards
it as of little moment in comparison with other resources of the great
basin. It would not equal in commercial value the pastime of the idle
warriors of the basin, if each one were to find such in the picking of
a third of a pound of rubber a day for a year, or in the melting of
two-thirds of a pound of palm-oil, for then the aggregate of either would
exceed $25,000,000 in value, and nature would be none the poorer for the
drain upon her resources. The same could be said if each warrior picked
half a pound of gum-copal per day, collected half a pound of orchilla, or
ground out half a pound of red-wood powder.

Stanley, and indeed all explorers of Central Africa, are convinced that
iron ore abounds. It must be that the iron formations are manifest,
for the natives are not given to mining, yet most of the tribes are
iron-workers, patient and skillful, according to the unanimous testimony
of travelers, and as the trophies sent home testify. Near Phillipville
are copper mines which supply a large portion of Western Africa with
copper ingots. Among the Manyanga tribes, copper ingots are a commodity
as common as vegetables and fowls. To the southeast of the Upper Congo
section are copper supplies for the numerous caravans that find ingress
and egress by way of the Zambesi. Both Livingstone and Pinto found tribes
on the Upper Zambesi who were skillful copper-smiths. It is known that
black-lead exists in the Congo region. It has ever been a dream that
Africa possessed rich gold fields. Though this dream was early dispelled
as to the Gold Coast, it appertains as to other regions, for the roving
Arabs are accustomed to return from their inland visits bearing bottles
filled with gold dust, which they say they have filled from the beds of
streams which they crossed.

Every observer can inform himself as to the agricultural resources of
Central Africa. It is an exception on the Upper Congo, and for that
matter anywhere in Central Africa, to find a village without its cleared
and cultivated plats for maize and sugarcane, and some of these plats
have the extent and appearance of well-ordered plantations. Everywhere
the banana and plantain flourish, and yield a bountiful supply of
wholesome, nourishing food. Millet is grown among some tribes for the
sake of the flour it yields; but everywhere on the main river the chief
dependence for a farinaceous diet is on the manioc plant, which yields
the tapioca of commerce. The black bean grows almost without cultivation,
and yields prolifically.

There is hardly anything in the vegetable line that does not find a
home in tropical Africa. The sweet-potato grows to immense size, as do
cucumbers, melons of all kinds, pumpkins, tomatoes, while cabbages, the
Irish potato, the onion and other garden vegetables introduced from the
temperate zone thrive in a most unexpected manner.

Wherever the Arab traders and settlers have struck this section from the
east they have introduced the cultivation of rice and wheat with success,
and they have carried along the planting of the mangoe, lime, orange,
lemon, pine-apple and guava, all of which take hold, grow vigorously and
produce liberally. All of these last have been tried on the Congo with
the greatest encouragement.

Then there is practically no limit to the spice plants found growing
naturally in the Congo section and capable of introduction. Ginger and
nutmeg are quite common amid the rich plant growth of the entire section.
As the immense prairie stretches of the Upper Congo and the Lake regions
may at no distant day become the grazing ground for the world’s cattle
supply, or the granary of nations, so the river bottoms, and the uplands
as well, may become the cotton producing areas of the manufacturing
world. Cotton is indigenous and grows everywhere. It is especially fond
of the cleared spots which mark the site of deserted villages, and
asserts itself to the exclusion of other vegetation. It has neither frost
nor drought to contend with, and nature has given it a soil in which it
may revel, without the requirement of sedulous cultivation.

It may well be asked in connection with this section, what is there
which civilization demands, or is used to, for its table, its factory,
or store-house, that it does not produce, or cannot be made to produce?
If it supports a population almost equal to that of Europe, a population
without appliances for farming and manufacturing, a population of
comparative idlers, what a surplus it might produce under intelligent
management and with a moderate degree of industry. The native energy of
Africa, even with the most advanced tribes, is sadly misdirected, or
rather, not directed at all. The best muscle of every tribe is diverted
to warlike pursuits or to the athleticism of the chase. Whilst it is
not a rule that it is undignified for a full grown male to work, the
customs are such as to attract him into other channels of effort, so
that the burden of work is thrown upon the women. They are the vegetable
gardeners, the raisers of fowls and goats, and in the cattle regions of
the Upper Congo and Zambesi, they are the milk-maids, the calf-raisers
and herd attendants. Therefore, African labor is today like African
vegetation; it is labor run wild. It is a keen, excellent labor under the
spur of reward, just as the African commercial sense is alive to all the
tricks of trade. What it requires is instruction and proper direction,
and with these one may find in tropical Africa a resource of far more
value, both at home and abroad, than all the untold wealth of forest,
soil or mine.

We see and hear too little of the human resources of Africa. By this we
do not mean that religion does not regard the African as a fit subject
for conversion, nor that ethnology does not seek to study him as a
curiosity, nor that commerce fails to use him as a convenience, nor
that the lust of the Orient has ceased to discuss him as a source of
gratification, but we do mean that with all the writing about African
resources and possibilities, the fertility of soil, the luxuriance
of forest, the plenitude of minerals, the exuberance of animal life,
there is but meagre discussion of the place the native himself is to
fill, considered also in the light of a natural resource. While we
grow infatuated with descriptions of African wealth and possibility, we
almost skip the mightiest problem Africa can reveal, the relationship
its own people are to bear to its material development, their status
as factors in unfolding the inner continent to the outer world. The
eyes of commercial and manufacturing Europe are so set upon the main
advantage, to wit, that of grabbing African lands and appropriating at
a cheap rate whatever is accessible, as to overlook the future of the
native. Our own eyes have been so dimmed by the melancholy sight of the
North American Indian fading away before our boasted civilization, or
by sight of the sons of Africa forced into degradation at the behest of
hard-hearted greed, as that they are actually blind to the human factor
in African enterprise. With all our respect for civilization, it must
be confessed that it has failed signally to use to advantage what it
found God-made and at hand, when it struck new continents and islands.
It has destroyed and supplanted, as on the American continents, the
Pacific islands, in Southern Africa, in the East Indies. Is that to be
the role of civilization in Central Africa? Does not that continent
present a higher and more humanitarian problem? Driven to desperation
by a baffling climate, yet spurred by an inordinate cupidity, will not
the civilization of the white man be compelled to the exercise of a
genius which shall embrace the native populations, classify them as an
indispensable resource, lift them to a plain of intelligent energy, look
upon them as things of equality, and ultimately regard them as essentials
in the art of progress and the race for development? We regard extinction
of the African races as fatal to African development. There is no place
in the world where the civilized commercial instinct crosses so directly
the natural laws of the universe as in Africa. There is no place in the
world where the ordinary forces of colonization are so nonplussed as
in Africa. If we are to go ahead with our humanitarian and commercial
and political problems in Africa, in the old fashioned, uncompromising,
brutal way; if Africa is to be civilized by the rejection of Africans, by
their extinction or degradation; then will civilization commit a graver
mistake and more heinous crime than when it forced the Indian into the
lava-bed, the Aztec into the Pacific or the Inca into bondage, and death
in the mine. America has its race problem on hand, to be solved more
by blacks than whites. Africa presents the same problem to the world.
Whatever the white man may make out of African resource by following the
usual formula of civilization, reduction, extirpation and so on, on the
unchristian plea that the end justifies the means, that result can be
safely increased a thousand times if only it is not forgotten that the
native is the true, the natural, factor in any rational and permanent
scheme of development.

The next section of Central Africa which comes under observation is
that which is watered by the Lualaba, or in other words, the Congo,
from Stanley Falls to Lake Bangweola. This is an immense section,
embracing 246,000 square miles, or a length of 1260 miles. This section
comprehends the several lakes on the Lualaba and the drainage system on
both sides of that river, but excluding Tanganyika, and that part of the
reservoir system known as the Muta Nzigé. Lake Bangweola covers 10,000
square miles; Lake Moero, 2,700 square miles; and Lake Kassali, 2,200
square miles. From Stanley Falls to Nyangwé is 327 miles, all navigable,
except the six miles below Nyangwé. On the right side, going up, the
Lualaba receives the Leopold river, navigable for thirty miles; the
Lowa, navigable for an unknown distance; the Ulindi, 400 yards wide, and
navigable; the Lira, a deep, clear stream, 300 yards wide; the Luama, 250
miles long; the Luigi, and Lukuga, the latter being the outlet of Lake

On the left side, the Lualaba receives the Black River, the Lumani, and
the Kamolondo. Above Nyangwé, the main stream is again navigable to
Moero Lake. Altogether there are 1,100 miles of navigable water in this
section. It has, for twenty years, been a favorite stamping ground for
slave traders, and its population has therefore been greatly decimated,
yet Stanley estimates it at 6,000,000, embraced in nine principal and
many subordinate tribes. On the Lower Lualaba are four important trading
points, long used by the Arabs for their nefarious purposes, and all
readily accessible to the eastern coast of Africa, over well defined
routes. These points are Kasongo, Nyangwé, Vibondo, and Kirundu. They are
even more accessible from the west coast by way of the Congo, and Stanley
regards them as valuable points for the gathering and dissemination of
trade, since their populations have had twenty years of experience in
traffic with outsiders. With their assistance the fine herds of cattle
reared by the tribes of the plains east of the Lualaba might be brought
to that river, and distributed along the entire length of the Congo, or
even carried to European markets. This section is just as rich in natural
products as that of the Upper Congo, and of the same general character.

The Chambesi is the main stream pouring into Lake Bangweola. Stanley
makes it give a name to the section which embraces the head-waters of
the Congo. It is a basin, walled in by high mountains whose sides and
ravines furnish the springs of the Congo, and whose heights form the
water-shed between the Congo and Zambesi. The Chambesi is a large,
clear, swift stream, with several important affluents. It runs through
a country, overgrown with papyrus, rushes, and tall grasses, which are
most wearisome to the traveler. The country abounds in food, and the
people are “civil and reasonable,” as Livingstone says. The interminable
prairies are broken only by occasional rows of forest, indicative of a
stream or ravine. Much of the land is inundated during the rainy season,
giving rise to swamps of great extent and of difficult passage. Where
this is not the case, the land affords rich pasturage for the herds of
the Babisa and other tribes engaged in stock raising. This remote but
interesting section is not over 46,000 miles in extent, with a population
of 500,000.

As Stanley depends on Livingstone for his description of the Chambesi and
Upper Lualaba country, and as this region was the object of a special
journey by Livingstone——unfortunately for science and humanity, his last
journey——it is proper to get an impression of it from the great explorer

He started for it from Delagoa Bay, by way of the Rovuma river, which
empties into Delagoa Bay, on the east coast nearly half way between the
mouth of the Zambesi and Zanzibar. This river has its source well inland
toward Lake Nyassa, and hence its ascent would bring him into the Lake
region. All this ground has now become historic through the English and
Portuguese struggle for its permanent possession.

Though the last of Livingstone’s journeys it was his most hopeful.
Says he:——“The mere animal pleasure of traveling in a wild, unexplored
country is very great. When on lands of a couple of thousand feet
elevation, brisk exercise imparts elasticity to the muscles, fresh and
healthy blood circulates through the brain, the mind works well, the
eye is clear, the step is firm, and the day’s exertion always makes the
evening’s repose thoroughly enjoyable. We have usually the stimulus of
remote chances of danger from man or beast. Our sympathies are drawn out
toward our humble, hardy companions by a community of interests, and
it may be of perils, which make us all friends. Nothing but the most
pitiable puerility would lead any manly heart to make their inferiority
a theme for self-exaltation. However, that is often done, as if with the
vague idea that we can, by magnifying their deficiencies, demonstrate
our own perfections. The effect of travel on a man whose heart is in
the right place is, that the mind is made more self-reliant. It becomes
more confident of its own resources——there is greater presence of mind.
The body is soon well knit. The muscles of the limbs grow as hard as a
board, and seem to have no fat. The countenance is bronzed and there is
no dyspepsia. Africa is a most wonderful country for the appetite, and
it is only when one gloats over marrow bones or elephants’ feet that
indigestion is possible. No doubt much toil is involved, and fatigue
of which travelers in the more temperate climes can form but a faint
conception. But the sweat of one’s brow is no longer a curse when
one works for God. It proves a tonic to the system and is actually a
blessing. No one can truly appreciate the charm of repose unless he has
undergone severe exertion.”

Thus buoyantly he started for the interior, employing a retinue of human
carriers and servants, and supplementing them with camels, mules and
trained buffaloes. It was, in some respects, the most unique caravan of
exploration that ever entered an unknown land. As to camels for carriers,
away from the desert and through trackless jungle and forest, it was
in the nature of an experiment which soon grew tiresome and ended in
failure. As to the mules, they soon fell a prey to the tsetse fly. As
to the buffaloes, which, together with the native oxen, had stood him
in good stead through all his wanderings in the Kalahari desert, where
they are in daily use as beasts of burden and the saddle by the natives,
these too fell a victim to the merciless attack of the tsetse. He was
therefore left with his two faithful attendants, Chuma and Susi, and his
retinue of native carriers.


Passing through the wonderful country which borders the Rovuma, a
country of peaceful tribes and plentiful products, with nothing more
than the usual adventures of an African traveler, he at last arrived at
Lake Nyassa. At this lake, Livingstone was on the west side of what is
now known as the Mozambique territory, though it is more familiar as
Nyassaland. The lake is part of the northern Zambesi water system, and
its outlet into that stream is through the river Shiré. On account of the
absence of boats, which were all in the hands of suspicious Arab slave
merchants, he was forced to pass down the east side of the lake and cross
over its outlet, the Shiré. It was by the waters of this beautiful river
and the Zambesi that Livingstone always hoped to secure an easy access to
Central Africa. The only obstacles then were the foolish policy of the
Portuguese with regard to custom duties at the mouth of the Zambesi, and
the falls on the Shiré which obstruct its navigation for seventy miles.
Had he lived a few more years he would have seen both of these obstacles
in part overcome, and the mission work of Bishop Steere, supplementing
that of Bishop Mackenzie, so far forward as to girdle the lake with
prosperous mission stations. As Livingstone rounded the southern end of
the lake, he could not help recalling the fact that far down the Shiré
lay in its last sleep the body of the lamented Mackenzie, and that
further down on the right bank of the Zambesi slept the remains of her
whose death had changed all his future prospects. His prophecy that at
no distant day civilization and the Gospel would assert itself in this
promising land is now meeting with fulfillment in the claims of England
to a right of way into Central Africa through this very region, at the
expense of Portugal, whose older right has been forfeited by non-use.

In striking westward from the lake, Livingstone found the people to be
a modification of the great Waiyau branch, which extends from the lake
to Mozambique. He was also impressed with the fact that but one stock
inhabited all the country on the Zambesi, Shiré, Lake Nyassa and Lake
Tanganyika, owing to the slight difference in their dialects. The first
tribe he came in contact with were both pastoral and agricultural. Their
cattle ranged over grassy, fertile plains, and were characterized by the
large hump on the shoulders, which seemed, in some instances, to weigh
as much as a hundred pounds. They cultivated very fine gardens, and all
seemed to work, though the burden of labor fell on the slaves. Wild
animals were plenty, and during Livingstone’s stay in the village a woman
was carried away and wholly devoured by a lion.

[Illustration: WOMEN CARRIERS.]

In passing westward to the next village, his escort consisted of a large
party of Waiyau, accompanied by six women carriers, who bore supplies
for their husbands, a part of which consisted of native beer. His
course brought him upon that peculiarity of soil which characterizes
all the head streams of the Shire county, the Zambesi and the Congo. He
designates it as earth sponge. The vegetation about the streams falls
down, but is not incorporated with the earth. It forms a rich, black
loamy mass, two or three feet thick which rests on the sand of the
streams. When dry it cracks into gaps of two or three inches in width,
but when wet it is converted into a sponge, which presents all the
obstacles of a swamp or bog to the foot of the traveler.

On this journey, he witnessed a native method of hunting with dogs
and the basket trap. The trap is laid down in the track of some small
animal and the dogs are put on the trail. The animal in its flight runs
into the open mouth of the trap, and through a set of converging bamboo
splits which prevent its return. Mice and rats are caught in similarly
constructed traps, which are made of wire instead of wood. A similar
method of catching wild animals of larger growth was formerly in vogue
in the southern Zambesi section. Long leads of wattled palisading were
erected, open at the base and gradually narrowing to an apex, in which
a pit was dug covered over with a layer of grass. Hunters scoured the
plains in extended circles, beating in all the game within the circles.
The frightened beasts, pushed by the gradually closing hunters and
demoralized by their antics and noises, rush into the trap prepared for
them and fall helplessly into the pit, where they are captured. This
method of hunting is called “_hopo_.”


[Illustration: PIT AT END OF HOPO.]

The village he reached was inhabited by the Manganza, who are extremely
clever in the art of manufacture. Their looms turn out a strong
serviceable cotton cloth. Their iron weapons show a taste for design
not equalled by any of their neighbors, and it is the same with all
implements relating to husbandry. Though far better artisans than the
more distinctive Waiyau, they are deficient in dash and courage. He was
now at an elevation of 4,000 feet above the sea, in the midst of a very
fine country, where the air was delightfully clear and delicious. The
cultivation was so general, and the fields so regularly laid out, that
it required but little imagination to picture it as an English scene.
The trees were only in clumps, and marked the tops of ridges, the sites
of villages or the places of sepulture. The people go well armed with
bows and arrows, and fine knives of domestic manufacture, and being great
hunters they have pretty well rid their section of game. The women wear
their hair long, dress in reasonably full clothing, and have somewhat the
appearance of the ancient Egyptians.

The westward journey brought him to the Kanthunda people, partly
plain-dwellers and partly mountaineers. They are very pompous and
ceremonious. Food was found in plenty, raised by their own hands, since
game was well nigh extinct. The villages were now very frequent, mostly
situated in groves composed of large trees. The country was broken into
high ranges of hills with broad valley sweeps between. The thermometer
frequently sank to 64° at night, but the sun was intolerably hot during
the day, necessitating short journeys.

All this time Livingstone had been passing westward through the system
which drains either into Lake Nyassa or directly into the Zambesi. His
objective being the basin which supplies the head streams of the Congo,
he turned his journey northward in the direction of the mountains which
divide the two great river systems.

The tribes he now struck were greatly harassed by the Mazuti, who stole
their corn annually and made frequent raids for the capture of slaves.
Yet they were hospitable and prosperous, being skillful weavers and
iron-workers. The country was mountainous, for he was on the divide
between the waters which drain into Lake Nyassa and those which flow into
the Loangwa on the west, the latter being an important affluent of the
Zambesi. Striking the head-waters of the Lokushwa, a tributary of the
Loangwa, he followed its course to the main stream, through a country of
dwarf forests, and peoples collected in stockades, who were the smiths
for a large region, making and selling hoes and other iron utensils.

He crossed the Loangwa at a point where it is 100 yards wide, and in
a country abounding in game. It was here that he indulged in those
regretful thoughts respecting the gradual passing away of the magnificent
herds of wild animals——zebras, elands, buffaloes, giraffes, gnus, and
numerous species of deer and antelope——which once roamed all over Central
and South Africa, down to the Cape of Good Hope, which are every year
being thinned away, or driven northwards. The lion——the boasted king
of animals——makes a poor figure beside the tsetse fly in travellers’
records. The general impression about him is that, in spite of his
formidable strength, his imposing roaring, and his majestic mane, he
is a coward and a skulker. Livingstone had a hearty contempt for the
brute, though in his time he had been severely mauled and bitten by
him. The lion, however, when sore pressed by hunger, has been known to
pluck up sufficient courage to tear off the flimsy roof of a native hut
and leap down upon the sleeping inmates. The elephant——a much grander
animal in every respect——occasionally performs a similar feat, his motive
being curiosity, or perhaps mischief, if one of his periodical fits of
ill-nature is upon him. A sight may now and again be got of a roaming
rhinoceros tramping stolidly with surly gruntings through the depths of
the thicket: a glade will be suddenly opened up where a group of shaggy
buffaloes are grazing; or a herd of startled giraffes will break away in
a shambling gallop, their long necks swinging ungracefully to and fro, as
they crash their way through the forest, like “locomotive obelisks.” Now
and then a shot may be got at a troop of zebras, pallahs, wild beeste, or
other big-game animals, and the scanty larder be replenished for a time;
but the traveler must often lay his account with being absolutely in want
of food, and be fain, like Livingstone, to draw in his belt an inch or
two in lieu of dinner.


But the most gallant sport in these regions——excelling in danger and
excitement even elephant-hunting——is the chase of the hippopotamus.
On the Loangwa Livingstone met an entire tribe, the Makomwe, devoted
exclusively to hippopotamus hunting. They reside in temporary huts on the
islands, and when game gets scarce in one place they move to another.
The flesh of the animals they kill is exchanged for grain brought to
the river by the more settled tribes. In hunting, two men have charge
of a long, shapely canoe. The men, one in the bow and one in the stern,
use short, broad paddles, and as they guide the canoe down the river
upon the sleeping hippopotamus, not a ripple is seen on the water. The
paddlers seem to be holding their breaths and communicate by signs only.
As they near their prey, the harpooner in the bow, lays down his paddle,
rises slowly up, with his harpoon poised in his hand, and at the right
moment plunges it into the animal near the heart. His companion in the
stern now backs the canoe. At this stage there is little danger, for
the beast remains for a time at the bottom of the river. But soon his
surprise is over, the wound begins to smart, he feels the need of air,
through exhaustion. The strong rope attached to the harpoon has a float
fastened to one end, and this float designates the spot occupied by the
beast. It is known that he will soon come to the surface, and the canoe
now approaches the float, the harpooner having another harpoon poised in
hand ready for a second throw. The situation is full of danger. Perhaps
the second lunge is successful, but the beast generally comes up with an
angry bellow and is ready to smash the canoe in his enormous jaws. Woe
betide the occupants, unless they seek safety in the water. This they
are often forced to do, but even then are not safe, unless they swim
below the surface. Other canoes now come up and each one sends an harpoon
into the body of the prey. Then they all begin to pull on the connecting
ropes, dragging the beast hither and thither, till it succumbs through
loss of blood. Swarms of crocodiles invariably crowd about the scene,
attracted by the scent of the bleeding carcass.

The people he met with after passing the Loangwa were less civil, yet by
no means hostile. The forests were of larger growth and more extensive.
Animal life was rich in variety, as much so as on the Zambesi itself, and
it was nothing unusual to bring down a gnu, an eland, and other royal
animals in the same day. The country was a wide valley stretch, clothed
with vegetation and very fertile. It reached to the Lobemba country,
whose people are crafty and given to falsehoods. They are fond of hunting
and attack the elephant with dogs and spears. The land is beautiful and
fruitful, but the tribes have been torn by slave-raiders and intestinal

The Babisa people, further north, are franker and better off. They
trade without urging, and are given to much social gaiety. Livingstone
witnessed in their midst the performance of the rain dance by four
females, who appeared with their faces smeared, with war hatchets in
their hands, and singing in imitation of the male voice. These people
degenerate as the northern brim of the Loangwa valley is approached, and
are dependent for food on wild fruits, roots and leaves.

[Illustration: HUNTER’S PARADISE.]

Passing further up among the head-streams of the Loangwa, the country
becomes a succession of enormous earth waves, sustaining a heavy growth
of jungle, without traces of paths. Marks of elephant and buffalo feet
are frequent in the oozy soil about the streams, but the animals are shy.
Serpents are plenty, and every now and then cobras and puff-adders are
seen in the trails. The climate is delightful, bordering on cool, for now
it must be understood, the elevation is high, the traveller being well up
on the water-shed between the Congo and Zambesi.

At length the mountain ranges are scaled, and the streams begin to run
westward into the Chambesi, the main head stream of the Congo. The wet
season dawns and all the rivulets are full. The sponge which composes
their banks is soggy, so that the feet slip and are constantly wet. All
around is forest, deep and luxuriant. The low tribes of the Babisa extend
over the mountain tips and partly down the western slopes, carrying
along their mean habits and showing the wreck occasioned by the Arab
slave merchants. They could furnish only mushrooms and elephants to
Livingstone, and these at fancy prices.

It was here that Livingstone met with that mishap which contributed
to his untimely end. His two Waiyau guides deserted, taking along his
medicine chest. He felt as if he had received his death sentence, like
poor Bishop Mackenzie, for the forest was damp and the rain almost
incessant. From this time on, Livingstone’s constitution was continually
sapped by the effect of fever-poison, which he was powerless to

Livingstone was now clearly on the Congo water-shed and was making his
way toward the Chambesi. The people were shrewd traders, but poorly
off for food. Camwood and opal trees constituted the forests. There
was an abundance of animal life. Pushing his way down the Movushi
affluent, he at length reached the Chambesi, wending its way toward
Lake Bangweola, in a westerly direction. It is a full running stream,
abounding in hippopotami, crocodiles and lizards. A crossing was made
with difficulty, and the journey lay through extensive flooded flats. The
villages were now mostly in the lowlands and surrounded by stockades as
a protection against wild beasts. Elephants and buffaloes were plenty.
Lions frequently picked off the villagers, and two men were thus killed
at the village of Molemba the day before Livingstone’s arrival. Forests
were still deep and dark, but the gardens were large. At Molemba he met
King Chitapangwa, who gave him the royal reception described elsewhere in
this volume, and presented him with a cow, plenty of maize and calabashes
and a supply of hippopotamus flesh. The king was one of the best natured
men Livingstone had met. The huts literally swarmed with a bird, like the
water wag-tail, which seemed to be sacred, as in the Bechuana country.
Here too the boys were of a lively type and fond of sport. They captured
smaller game and birds, but were not as skillful as the young people of
Zulu and Bechuana land, where the kiri weapon is handled with so much
skill. This kiri is made of wood or rhinoceros horn, and varies from a
foot to a yard in length, having at one end a knob as large as a hen’s
egg. It is often used in hand to hand conflicts, but is the favorite
weapon of the hunter, who hurls it, even at game on the wing, with
marvellous precision.


Livingstone did not descend into the lowlands on the lower Chambesi and
about Lake Bangweola, but kept heading northward on the skirts of the
Congo water-shed, in the direction of Tanganyika. He found about all the
streams the spongy soil which so impeded his steps, the same alternations
of hill and plain, forest and jungle. Everywhere were evidences of that
gigantic and plentiful animal life which characterizes tropical Africa.
To this wonderful exuberance was now added herds of wild hogs, whose
leaders were even more formidable looking than the boars of the German


In his course toward Tanganyika he passed the people of Moamba who
import copper from Kantanga and manufacture it into a very fine wire for
ornaments and animal traps. The Babemba villages were passed, a tribe
living within close stockades, and more warlike than those to the south.
The banana now begins to flourish, and herds of cattle denote a pastoral
life. Tobacco is grown in quantities sufficient for a home supply.
Hunting is carried on by means of the hopo hedges, within whose bounds
the wild beasts are frightened by circles of hunters.

In the Balungu country, Livingstone found Lake Liemba, amid a beautiful
landscape. The chief, Kasongo, gave him a royal reception. He was
gratified here to find men from Tanganyika. The lake is at the bottom
of a basin whose sides are nearly perpendicular but tree-covered. Down
over the rocks pour beautiful cascades, and buffaloes, elephants and
antelopes wander on the more level spots, while lions roar by night.
The villages are surrounded by luxuriant palm-oil trees, whose bunches
of fruit grow so large as to require two men to carry them. The Balungu
are an excessively polite people, but chary of information and loth to
trade. This is because they have been so much raided by the Arabs and
native Mazitu. The waters of this lake appeared to drain to the north
into Tanganyika, but more probably by some other outlet to the Congo.
Livingstone had never seen elephants so plenty as in this section. They
came all about his camp and might be seen at any time eating reachable
foliage, or grubbing lustily at the roots of small trees in order to
prostrate them so as to get at their stems and leaves.

At Mombo’s village were found cotton fields and men and women skilled in
weaving. Elephants abounded and did much damage to the sorghum patches,
and corn-safes. Leopards were destructive to the goat-herds. Bird life
was even more various than on the Zambesi.

Though weakened by fever, Livingstone determined to deflect westward
toward Lake Moero, on the line of the Lualaba, and in the heart of the
basin which gathers the Congo waters. The route lay through a prairie
region, well watered by brisk streams. The Wasongo people have herds
of cattle, which they house with care, and a plentiful supply of milk,
butter and cheese. But they were frequently disturbed by Arab slave
stealers, and their supplies of cattle were often raided by hostile


It was here that Livingstone came upon the caravan of Tippoo Tib, who
even at that date seems to have been a marauding genius, greatly feared
by the natives for his craftiness and cruelty. The tribe of King Nsama
proved to be an interesting one. “The people are regular featured
and good looking, having few of the lineaments of their darker coast
brethren. The women wear their hair in tasteful fashion and are of comely
form.” King Nsama seemed to have been a Napoleon in the land, till about
the time of Livingstone’s visit when he had received a Waterloo at the
hand of the Arabs.

[Illustration: HUNTING ZEBRAS.]

Livingstone now came to the Chisera river, a mile wide, and flowing into
Lake Moero. The land on both sides of the stream sloped down to the
banks in long, fertile stretches over which roamed elephants, buffaloes
and zebras. The people were numerous and friendly. They find plenty of
food in the large game which inhabits their district. There was the
same plenty of zebras, buffalo and hippopotami over the flat stretch
which brought him to the Kamosenga river. Crossing this stream he was
in the country of the Karungu, who live in close stockades and are by
nature timid. They were chary traders, though they had abundance of
ivory and their granaries were filled with corn. It was all the result
of intimidation by the Arab slavers; and, it must be remembered that
Livingstone was following in the track of one of their caravans.

Bending a little to the southwest the country was well wooded and
peopled. Large game was still plenty and the natives captured an abundant
supply of food. The Choma river was reached, abounding in hippopotami and
crocodiles. The natives fled on the approach of the party and it was with
difficulty that a supply of food could be bought. Beyond, and over a long
line of hills, the natives became less timid. Here the party met a large
herd of buffaloes from which a supply of meat was obtained.

Their course now bore them to the Luao, flanked by granite hills which
continue all the way to Moero. All the valleys in this part of the Congo
basin are beautiful, reminding one of English or American scenery. The
soil is very rich. The people live amid plenty, procured from their
gardens and the chase. They would be friendly if left alone, but they can
hardly be said to lead natural lives owing to the frequency and cruelty
of Arab raids.

As the lake is neared, the villages become more frequent. The lake is
reached at last. It is a large body of water flanked by mountains on
the east and west. The immediate banks are sand, skirted by tropical
vegetation, in the midst of which the fishermen build their huts. There
are many varieties of fish in the waters, and some of them are large
and fine. At the north end is the outflow of the lake into the Lualaba
river, whose continuation becomes the Congo. The inflow at the south
end, Livingstone calls the Luapula, which name, he says, it keeps up to
Lake Bangweola. Beyond that it is the Chambesi whose head-waters he had
already crossed. West of the lake is the Rua country. The people about
the lake are Babemba, timid to a fault and hard to trade with.

Though reduced by fever, the infatuation of travel was so strong in
Livingstone, that he turned southerly along the lake and struck for
the unknown regions, about its southern end. He crossed an important
tributary, the Kalongosi, whose waters were literally alive with fish,
from the lake, seeking places to spawn. South of this stream the people
are the Limda, not friendly disposed, yet not hostile. They are of
the true negro type, and are great fishermen and gatherers of salt on
the lake. The forests are not of rank growth, and the wood is chiefly
bark-cloth and gum-opal, the latter exuding its gum in large quantities,
which enters the ground and is preserved in large cakes for the use of
future generations.

The streams are now very frequent, and difficult to cross when swollen.
After crossing the Limda he was in the Cassembe country, which is very
rich and populous, growing the finest of palm-oil and ground-nuts. The
capital village is in the centre of a plain, and is more a Mohammedan
than a native town. As neither goats, sheep nor cattle thrive, the people
depend on fish and vegetables for food. Every hut had a cassava garden
about it, and honey and coffee were plenty, as were maize, beans and nuts.

The Cassembe, take their name from the chief or ruler, who is a Pharaoh,
or general, called the “Cassembe,” the ninth generation of which was on
the throne when Livingstone was there. He gave him a royal reception,
differing in many respects from all others which he had received.
Cassembe had a dwarf, captured from some of the northern tribes, who
figured as clown of the occasion. Then his wife appeared as a conspicuous
mistress of ceremonies, preceded by men brandishing battle axes, beating
on hollow instruments, and yelling at the crowd to clear the way. She was
a comely looking personage of light color and regular features. In her
hand were two enormous pipes filled ready for smoking. This procession
was followed by the Cassembe, whose smile of welcome would have been
captivating but for the fact that he was accompanied by his executioner,
bearing a broad Limda sword and a large pair of scissors for cropping
the ears of offenders. The queen is a thorough agriculturist, and pays
particular attention to her fields of cassava, sweet-potatoes, maize,
sorghum, millet, ground-nuts and cotton. The people as a whole are rough
mannered and positively brutal among themselves. Livingstone spent a
month among them, before he could get an escort to take him through the
swamps to the southern end of Moero, which he was anxious to explore

The Cassembe, like many other tribes on the head waters of the Congo,
procure copper ore from Kantanga, on the west, and work it into
bracelets, anklets and fine wire for baskets and traps. They have been
visited time and again by the Portuguese. By and by Livingstone bade
Cassembe farewell and pushed for the southern and western shores of the
lake. He took views from many points on the Rua mountains and approached
its shores at many points. At every shore approach there was a profusion
of moisture and of tropical forests abounding in buffaloes and elephants,
while the open spaces gave views of pasturing zebras. The latter had not
yet become an object of chase as in the lands south of the Zambesi, where
they give great sport to both native and foreign hunters and where so
much of the larger game has been swept away by inconsiderate sportsmen.
Lions and leopards were also plenty, and the camps had to be guarded
nightly against them. The population about the lake is everywhere dense,
and the fish supply limitless. Livingstone found the lake, at his various
points of observation from the Rua heights, to be from 30 to 60 miles
wide, and the natives claimed that it was larger than Tanganyika. They do
not pretend to cross the lake in boats, deeming it too long and dangerous
a journey, in a country where storms are frequent and the waters are apt
to be lashed into fury by the winds.

The circuit of Lake Moero, the almost continuous wading of swamps and
crossing of swollen streams, the arrival at Cassembe again and the
expression of a determination to go still further south into the swampy
regions, to discover Lake Bemba, or Bangweola, instead of back to
Tanganyika, where rest and medicine could be had, caused the desertion of
Livingstone’s entire traveling force except his always faithful Chuma and
Susi. But having attained the consent of Cassembe to proceed, and having
re-equipped himself as best he could, he started for Bangweola, keeping
parallel with the Luapula, but a day’s march away from its swamps.
Even then, the crossing of the frequent tributaries made his journey
tedious and dangerous. It was through a region of hill and vale, forest
and plain, of varied geological formation. At many points he came upon
developments of iron ore, which the natives worked and he had no doubt
that this valuable mineral existed in abundance in this region. It ought
to be remembered that the Kantanga copper region, whence all the eastern
coast draws a supply, lies but a few days’ journey west of the Luapula,
and in this part of the Congo basin.

The people were the Banyamwezi, smart traders and given to lying like
Greeks. They are populous, but having been raided by the Mazitu, many
of their villages were deserted. Passing through their country, the
land becomes flat and forest covered, and so continues all the way
to Bangweola. The streams are all banked by the juicy sponge, before
described, which make traveling so treacherous and tiresome. All the
forests are infested with lions and leopards, necessitating the greatest
care at night.

It was January 18th, 1868, when Livingstone first set eyes on Lake
Bangweola. The country around the lake is all flat and free from trees,
except the mosikisi, which is spared for its dense foliage and fatty
oil. The people have canoes and are expert fishermen. They are numerous,
especially on the large islands of the lake. The variety of fish is
numerous and some are taken which measure four feet in length. The bottom
of the lake is sandy, and the shores reedy. During windy weather the
waters become quite rough and dangerous. The islanders have herds of
goats and flocks of fowls, and are industrious and peaceable, not given
to curiosity, but sitting unconcernedly and weaving their cotton or
knitting their nets, as a stranger passes by. According to Livingstone’s
estimate this splendid body of water is some 150 miles long by 80 broad.
The Lokinga mountains, extending from the southeast to the southwest are
visible, and this range joins the Mokone range, west of Kantanga, which
range is the water-shed between the Zambesi and Congo basins.

The people are still the Banyamwezi. Besides being skilled in weaving
cotton and in net-making, they are expert copper workers. In forging
they use a cone-shaped hammer, without a handle. They use bellows, made
of goat skin and wood. With these they smelt large ingots of copper in
a pot, and pour it into moulds, which give a rough shape to the article
they wish to forge.

Livingstone’s observations in this section taught him that there was
no such thing as a rainy zone, to account for the periodical rise of
rivers like the Nile and Congo. From May to October is a comparatively
dry season, and from October to May almost every day gave a thunder
shower, but there is no such continuous down pour as has been imagined
by meteorologists in Europe. He accounts for the humidity of both the
Congo and Zambesi watersheds, by the meeting of the easterly and westerly
winds in that section, thus precipitating the evaporations of both oceans
in mid-Africa. It is certain that the Congo does not get its yellow hue
from its head waters, for all the streams run clear even when swollen.
The sponges, or bogs, which are so frequent are accounted for by the fact
that some six to eight feet beneath the surface is a formation of sand
which cakes at the bottom, thus holding up the saturated soil above and
preventing the escape of the water. The same is true of large sections on
the Zambesi, and especially in the Kalahari Desert, though the vegetable
mould is wanting on the top. In that desert wells must be dug only so
deep. If water does not come, they must be dug in another place. To
puncture the substratum of caked sand is to make an escape for the water,
and create a dearth in an entire drainage system. A peculiarity of the
sponge everywhere is that it absorbs so much water as to keep the streams
from flooding till long after the shower. Then they assume what would be
an unaccountable flow, but for knowledge of the fact that it has taken
several hours for the rain-fall to penetrate them. When traveling on the
Limda, Livingstone had great trouble with his ox teams, which became
invariably bogged in the sponges, and when they saw the clear sand in
the centre of the streams, they usually plunged headforemost for it,
leaving nothing in sight but their tails.

[Illustration: DANGEROUS FORDING.]

Livingstone’s return from Bangweola to Cassembe gave him no opportunity
for observation, owing to the fact that the tribes were at war with one
another, instigated by the Arabs, who were gathering a rich crop of
slaves. Yet this misfortune was compensated in part by a return of his
deserters to his service, on his arrival at Cassembe, thereby enabling
him to continue his northward journey more comfortably, and to run the
gauntlet of the contending tribes with greater safety.

His journey to Tanganyika, arrival at Ujiji, sickness there, receipt of
welcome stores from the coast, slow recovery, make a sad history, but
does not add to our knowledge of the natural features and resources of
the Congo region. However, our interest is again awakened in this heroic
adventurer when we find him once more on his feet and resolved to visit
the land of the Manyuema, off to the west and on the Lualaba, in the
very heart of the Upper Congo valley, and the stamping ground of the
now celebrated Tippoo Tib. The Manyuema country was then unknown, and
Livingstone went in the trail of the first of those Arab hordes which
ever visited it, but whose repeated visits in quest of ivory and slaves
have carried murder, fire, theft and destruction to a once undisturbed,
if not happy people.

The journey lay from Kasenge, on the west coast of Tanganyika, near its
middle, in a north-west direction to the great market town of Nyangwe, on
the Lualaba, or Upper Congo. He found the route hilly but comparatively
open. Villages were frequent and the natives friendly, till the Manyuema
themselves were reached. There was an abundance of elephants and
buffaloes, which kept them supplied with meat. Where forests grew, the
trees were of gigantic proportions, and very dense, affording a complete
escape for wild animals when exhausted or crippled in the chase. The
native huts were of a superior kind, with sleeping apartments raised from
the ground. The soil was fertile, and the cultivation of vegetables was
general. On the route they came into the region of the oil-palm, which
does not flourish eastward of this, but assumes a more gigantic growth as
the western coast is approached.

A little more than midway between Tanganyika and Nyangwe, is Bambarre,
a flourishing village, surrounded by gardens, which the men help to
cultivate, though all the other duties of farm and house are imposed upon
the women, who are actual “hewers of wood and drawers of water” for the
tribe. They made willing carriers, and are of comely form. Here the soko
is believed to be a charm for rain. One was caught for meteorological
purposes, with the result that the captor had the ends of two fingers
and toes bitten off. Livingstone saw the nest of a soko, or gorilla,
and pronounced it a poor architectural contrivance. A young soko,
however, he regarded as the most wonderful object in nature, so ugly as
to excite astonishment, yet so quaint as to stimulate curiosity. Like
the kangaroo, it leaves one in doubt whether repulsion or attraction is
uppermost in the mind when viewing it. In the vicinity are hot springs,
and earthquakes are common, passing from east to west. The tribes of
Bambarre hold the Manyuema in great fear, regarding them as of man eating

Leaving Bambarre, Livingstone was soon in the extensive country of the
famed Manyuema, a tribe, or rather an entire people, hardly surpassed for
size and power by even the Zulus, Macololos, Ugandas or Niam-Niams, a
tribe whose name is one of terror far below Stanley Falls and far above
Nyangwe, and whose unamiable qualities have of late years been greatly
increased by the hold which Tippoo Tib, the Arab imperator on Lualaba,
has gotten upon them.

Livingstone’s journey toward their capital was through the most
remarkable country he had seen in Central Africa. He had elephant and
rhinoceros meat of his own shooting, and plenty to trade to the natives
for other dainties. The land is a beautiful succession of hills and
dales. The villages are frequent and perched on the slopes so as to
secure quick drainage. The streets run east and west in order that the
blazing sun may lick up the moisture. The dwellings are in perfect
line, with low thatched roofs, and every here and there are larger
establishments with grounds, which answer for public assemblages. The
walls are of beaten clay, and the insides are cosy and clean. The clay
walls are so compact as to stand for ages, and frequently men return,
after a site has been deserted for generations, to repair and re-occupy
their ancestral abodes. The people practice the rite of circumcision,
after the manner of the Abyssinians or Hebrews. The women are good
housekeepers, and preserve their food from the ants, which are in great
numbers and of many varieties, by slinging it from the ceiling of their
huts in earthen pots or neatly made baskets.

[Illustration: A YOUNG SOKO.]

Palms crown the heights of all the mountains and hills, and the forests,
usually of a width of five miles between the groups of villages, are
indescribable for their luxuriance and beauty. Climbers fold themselves
gracefully over the gigantic trees, wild fruit abounds, and monkeys
and brilliant birds skip and flit from bough to bough, with continuous
chatter and chirp. The soil is excessively rich and the people cultivate
largely, even though they are much separated by feuds and dense forest
reaches. Their maize bends its fruit stalk round like a hook. They insert
poles in the ground for fences, and these soon sprout making substantial
and impervious hedges. Climbing plants are trained from pole to pole,
and to these are suspended the ears of corn to dry. This upright granary
forms a wall around the entire village, and the women take down corn at
their will and distribute it to the men. The women are very naked. They
are thrifty, however, and may be seen on any market day carrying their
produce to the villages on their heads, or slung in receptacles over
their shoulders. No women could be fonder of beads and ornaments than
they, and Livingstone found them easy to trade with, when at all friendly.

The receptions Livingstone met with in the various villages, as he neared
the Lualaba, were as various as the humors of the people. Some received
him gladly, others with suspicion, and still others with rudeness,
saying, “If you have food at home, why come you so far and spend your
beads to buy it here?” On the Luamo, a tributary of the Lualaba, two
hundred yards broad and very deep, the chiefs proved so hostile as to
refuse to lend their canoes to the party to cross over. The women were
particularly outspoken, and claimed that the party were identical with
the cruel strangers (Arabs) who had lately robbed them. At length the
warriors of the place surrounded the party, with their spears and huge
wooden shields, and marched them bodily out of the district.

Wherever the wood has been cleared in this section, the soil immediately
brings a crop of gigantic grasses. These are burned annually.
Livingstone’s way now deflected to the north, through kindlier villages,
separated by damp forests. The rainy season was on and the streams were
all swollen. Evidences of large game were all around him. He passed an
elephant trap, which was made of a log of heavy wood twenty feet long,
with a hole at one end through which a vine passed to suspend it. At the
other end a lance of wood, four feet long, is inserted. A latch string
runs to the ground, which, when touched by the animal’s foot, causes the
log to fall, and its great weight drives the lance into the animal’s body.

The people here were more friendly and very curious as they never had
seen a white man before. They have a terrible dread of the Arabs, and
strange to say the Arabs feared them as much, for nothing could convince
an Arab that the Manyuema are not cannibals. It must be remembered
that Livingstone wrote some years ago and before the Arabs acquired
supremacy over these natives. It is a peculiarity of African tribes that
nothing can exceed the terror inspired by a reputation in another tribe
for cannibalism. It was a common thing on the Shiré and Zambesi, for
Livingstone to hear the natives there speak of tribes far away to the
north——like diseases, they are always far away——who eat human bodies,
and on every occasion the fact was related with the utmost horror and
disgust. Livingstone never took stock in these stories, nor in the wilder
ones of the Arabs, and he mentions no authenticated case of cannibalism
in all his volumes. It is more than likely that African cannibalism
exists only in the imagination of persons who prefer sensation to fact.

Livingstone seems to have become bewildered on this northward journey,
and crossed his track with the intention of making more directly for the
Lualaba. Though he found the people kind and the country indescribably
rich in vegetation, the way was difficult owing to the softness of the
ground and the swollen streams. He however succeeded, with much hardship,
in getting back to the route direct from Bambarre to the river. On this
route the villages were almost continuous, as many as nine being passed
in a single day. The people were kindly disposed and very curious. They
brought food willingly, traded eagerly, preferring bracelets to beads,
and in one village he was received by a band, composed of calabashes.
Goat and sheep herds were plenty, tended mostly by children, who lived
among and loved their charges as if they were human beings.

A grass burning resulted in the capture of four sokos by the natives,
besides other animals. The full grown soko would do well to stand for
a picture of the devil. One of them, it appears, was a young one which
gave Livingstone an opportunity for study. His light-yellow face showed
off his ugly whiskers and faint apology for a beard. The forehead,
villainously low, with high ears, was well in the back-ground of a great
dog mouth. The teeth were slightly human but the canines showed the beast
by their large development. The hands, or rather fingers, were like those
of the natives. The flesh of the feet was yellow. The eagerness with
which the Manyuema devoured it left the impression that eating sokos was
a good way to get up a reputation for cannibalism.

The soko sometimes kills the leopard by seizing both paws and biting
them, but often gets disemboweled in the attempt. Lions kill sokos with a
bound, tear them to pieces, but seldom eat them. They live in communities
of about ten, each male having a single wife. Interference with a wife is
visited by the resentment of all the other males, who catch and cuff the
offender till he screams for mercy.

Livingstone was now sorely detained by sickness and the desertion of his
carriers. The delay gave him opportunity to note the characteristics
of the Manyuema country with more particularity. It is not a healthy
country, not so much from fever as from debility of the whole system
induced by damp, cold and indigestion. This general weakness is ascribed
by some to the free use of maize as food, which produces weakness of the
bowels and choleraic purging. Rheumatism is common and cuts the natives
off. The Arabs fear this disease, and when attacked come to a stand-still
till it is cured. Tape worm is frequent, and the natives know no remedy
for it.

The natives have wonderful stores of ivory which the Arabs are eager
for. They cultivate the ground with the hoe, but their hoeing is little
better than scraping the ground, and cutting through the roots of the
grasses. This careless husbandry leaves the roots of maize, ground-nuts,
sweet-potatoes and sorghum to find their way into the rich, soft soil,
which they succeed in doing. The ground-nuts and cassava hold their own
against the grasses for years. Bananas grow vigorously on the cleared

The great want of the Manyuema is national life. Of this they have none.
Each head man is independent of each other. Of industry they have no lack
and the villagers are orderly toward each other, but they go no further.
If a man of another district ventures among them, he is not regarded
with more favor as a Manyuema than one of a herd of buffaloes is by the
rest, and on the slightest provocation he is likely to be killed. They
buy their wives from one another. A pretty girl brings ten goats. The new
wife is led to the new home by the husband, where five days are spent,
then she is led back to her home for five days, after which she comes to
her new home permanently. Many of the women are handsome, having perfect
forms and limbs. The conviction of Livingstone, after his experience
with these people, was that if a man goes with a good-natured and civil
tongue, he may pass through the worst people in Africa unharmed. He also
draws a fine line between the unmixed and mixed African races, by a
narrative of experience on the Shiré river. One of a mixed race stepped
into the water to swim off to a boat, and was seized by a crocodile.
The poor fellow held up his hands and screamed for help. Not a man went
to his help, but allowed him to perish. When at Senna, in the Makololo
country, a woman was seized by a crocodile. Instantly four natives rushed
unbidden and rescued her, though they knew nothing about her. These
incidents are typical of the two races. Those of mixed blood possess the
vices of both races and the virtues of neither.

The fact that there is no supreme chief among the Manyuema, makes it
difficult to punish murder except by war, and the feud is made worse,
being transmitted from generation to generation. This state of affairs,
when it came to be understood by such a crafty statesman as Tippoo Tib,
contributed to his victory over the people, and that peculiar sovereignty
which he exercises.

Livingstone got away from this place of confinement, and crossed the
Mamohela, on his journey to Nyangwe. The country was a fine grassy plain
watered by numerous rills, and skirted by mountains on either side, on
which perched the neat villages of the natives. Then forests intervene
of even more luxuriant growth than before, to be again succeeded by
plains. The people seem to grow more stately and shapely, the women being
singularly perfect in hands, feet and limbs, and of light brown color,
but all with the orifices of their noses enlarged by excessive snuff
taking. The humor of the villagers depended on how lately they had been
raided by the Arabs. They seemed also to grow more clever in art, for now
many forges were seen in active operation where iron was being shaped
into spears and utensils.

[Illustration: MANYUEMA WOMEN.]

At length the Lualaba is reached at Nyangwe, the capital of the Manyuema
country, and the greatest market town in Central Africa. Long before
Livingstone reached it he met upon the route hundreds of women wending
their way thither with their marketing in baskets on their heads or slung
in receptacles on their shoulders. As they trudged cheerfully along full
of thought as to what they would receive in exchange or what they would
buy, he could not help contrasting their condition with that of the women
bent on a like errand in his own country, where the labor might be the
same, but where there was happy exemption from such scenes of bloodshed
as he was forced to witness while there. But as these have been already
narrated the reader is here spared their horrible review.

The Manyuema prefer to do all their business in open market. If one
says, “Come, sell me that fowl, or cloth,” the reply is, “Come to the
market place.” The values there are more satisfactory and the transaction
is open. The people had a fear of Livingstone, because they could not
disassociate him from the Arab half-castes who had brought upon them
untold misery.

He found the Lualaba at Nyangwe to be twenty feet deep in mid stream
and subject to annual overflow just like the Nile——a mighty river, he
says, three thousand yards wide, with steep banks and full of islands.
The current runs at the rate of two miles an hour. His greatest trouble
was to get a canoe to take him across the river. The natives thought his
request for a large canoe, with which he intended to explore the river,
meant war upon them, so they sent only small ones, capable of carrying
two or three men, and which were entirely unfit for his purposes. The
Manyuema on the left bank of the Lualaba, opposite Nyangwe, are called
Bagenya. There are salt springs in their district, and they manufacture
the salt for the Nyangwe market, by boiling the brine.

The salutations of the Manyuema are the same as those of the Bechuana
people of the Kalihari desert, and indeed many of their customs
reminded Livingstone of what he had seen south of the Zambesi, among
the respective tribes. The natives of Nyangwe denied to Livingstone
the stories of cannibalism that had been circulated about them. They
never eat human flesh, unless it be the bodies of enemies killed in
war, and not then through any liking for the flesh, which is salty and
unpalatable, but because it makes them “dream of the dead man,” and, as
it were, kill them over in their sleep. This a very comfortable way of
getting a second vengeance, and is nearly allied to the reasoning which
is at the bottom of cannibalism in the South Sea Islands, to wit, belief
that the blood of a brave and fallen enemy transplants his bravery to
the veins of him who partakes of it. Cannibalism, for the sheer love of
eating human flesh, don’t exist in the world. It is a creation of the
imagination, a product of the tale telling spirit, and is not fair to the
pagan races.

Livingstone seems never to tire of praising the physical proportions of
the Manyuema and says, he would back a company of them, for shape of head
and physical form, male and female, against the whole Anthropological
Society. He was surprised at the extent of country embraced in the
Arab incursions. On questioning the slaves brought to Nyangwe by these
marauders, he found them members of tribes far up and down the Lualaba,
and westward of it many days’ journey. The copper of Kantanga reaches the
Nyangwe market, and is readily bought up at high figures, in barter.

The great market of Nyangwe is held every third day. It is a busy scene,
and every trader is in dead earnest. Venders of fish run about with
potsherds full of snails and small fishes, or with smoked fishes strung
on twigs, to exchange for cassava, potatoes, grain, bananas, flour,
palm-oil, fowls, salt, pepper, and various vegetables. Each is bent on
exchanging food for relishes, and the assertions of quality are as strong
as in a civilized mart. The sweat stands out on their faces, cocks crow
briskly from the baskets, and pigs squeal from their inclosures. Iron
utensils, traps and cages are exchanged for cloth, which is put away
for carriage in their capacious baskets. They deal fairly, and when
differences arise, they appeal to each other and settle things readily
on a basis of natural justice. With so much food changing hands among a
throng which frequently numbers 3,000 souls, much benefit is derived,
for some of them come twenty-five miles afoot. The men flaunt about
in a nervous and excited way, but the women are the hardest workers.
The potters hold up their wares and beat them with their knuckles to
prove their quality by the sound. It is all a scene of fine natural
acting——the eagerness with which they assert the value of their wares,
and the withering looks of disgust when the buyer sees fit to reject
the proffered article. Little girls run about selling cups of water to
the thirsty traders, just as lemonade or ice-water boys ply their art in
London during a procession. They are close buyers and sellers, prone to
exaggerate the merits of their articles, yet satisfied when a bargain
is clinched. Honesty is a rule, and when anything is stolen among the
Manyuema, they know that it is the work of the Arab slaves.

The Manyuema children do not creep as white children do, but begin by
putting forward one foot and using one knee. The fish of the Lualaba are
of the same variety as in Lake Nyassa. Cakes made of ground-nuts are a
common fare, as on the west coast. All Livingstone’s persuasions could
not induce the natives to hire him a canoe large enough to navigate the
river with. The Arabs had inflamed their imaginations by painting him
as an enemy in disguise, but their real purpose was to keep control of
all the larger boats themselves to assist in their river forays. Baffled
by both natives and Arabs, and after waiting for many weary weeks at
Nyangwe, he resolved to return to Ujiji, on Lake Tanganyika.

His return journey was a repetition of the sights and scenes already
described, varied of course by new opportunities for observing natural
features and events. On nearing the Mamohela, he passed through a most
populous region, with well constructed villages, abounding in goats,
fowls, dogs, and pigs, with vegetable food of every tropical variety in
plenty, while palm toddy, tobacco and bangue (Indian hemp) furnished
them the dainties. The soil was so fruitful that a mere scraping with a
hoe rendered a generous return. The forests afforded elephants, zebras,
buffaloes and antelopes, and in the streams were abundance of fish. The
antelope species in Africa is rich in variety, stalwart in form, and
heavy horned. Those of the Chobe river are dappled in color and very
beautiful. The quichobo is a rare species, and is more of a goat than
an antelope. It has amphibious qualities, and when frightened will jump
into the water and remain beneath the surface till danger has passed. At
this point Livingstone was given a secret which would have been worth
a fortune to him had he possessed it in time to have saved the camels,
mules and buffaloes with which he started on this journey from the coast.
It was to the effect that lion’s fat was a cure for the bite of the
tsetse fly. As he had never seen a fat lion, he was incredulous, till
assured that the Basango lions, in common with all other beasts, actually
took on fat. A vial of the precious stuff was handed him, a proof of
the fact that such a thing as lion fat did really exist. The cattle
raising tribes of the plains west of Tanganyika, know the virtue of this
ointment, and use it when they drive their herds toward the markets on
the eastern coast.


Sickness on the rest of the route to Tanganyika impaired his powers of
observation and description. In general he found the country beautiful
and fertile, but much disturbed by raiders. On his arrival at Tanganyika
he was ferried across to Ujiji. Sick and in despair, his faithful Susi
came rushing at the top of his speed one morning and gasped out, “An
Englishman!” This was Stanley, on his mission of rescue. This meeting,
and how the two explorers navigated Tanganyika, together with other
things that went to make up one of the most remarkable interviews in
history, are described elsewhere in this volume.

One would have thought that Livingstone could not fail to accompany
Stanley home. But he did not, and, weakened as he was by disease,
proclaimed to his rescuer a programme which embraced a journey round the
south end of Tanganyika, southward across the Chambesi, round the south
end of Lake Bangweola, due west to the mythical ancient fountains and
thence to the copper-mines of Kantanga. All this, he says, “to certify
that no other sources of the Nile can come from the south without
being seen by me.” What heroism was here, yet in his condition, what
infatuation! Poor man, deluded, self-sacrificial traveler, illy-advised
adventurer! All this long journey, from the time he struck the Chambesi,
months and months before, to Moero, to Tanganyika, to Bambare, to the
Lualaba and Nyangwe, had been through the water system of the Upper
Congo, and had nothing at all to do with the Nile sources, and now, going
back to Bangweola and to the Chambesi for the purpose of contributing
further to knowledge of the ultimate Nile sources, discovery of which
he regarded as worth the sacrifice of his life, he was but stamping
through the Congo basin again, and revealing the sources of a river which
found an outlet in the Atlantic. But such were the uncertainties which
confronted all these early African explorers. Even Stanley was uncertain
whither the Lualaba would lead when he embarked on its waters, and
although is volume furnished proof that it could not be the Nile, he was
still prepared, from its northern course, to accept it as such, till it
took its westward turn and straightened out for its Atlantic exit.

Writing on African beliefs, he says: “The African’s idea seems to be that
they are under control of a power superior to themselves——apart from and
invisible; good, but frequently evil and dangerous. This may have been
the earliest religious feeling of dependence on Divine power, without
any conscious feeling of its nature. Idols may have come in to give
definite ideas of superior power, and the primitive faith or impression
obtained by Revelation seems to have mingled with their idolatry, without
any sense of incongruity. The origin of the primitive faith in Africans
and others seems always to have been a Divine influence on their dark
minds, which has proved persistent in all ages. One portion of primitive
belief——the continued existence of departed spirits——seems to have no
connection whatever with dreams, or, as we should say, with ‘ghost
seeing,’ for great agony is felt in prospect of bodily mutilation, or
burning of the body after death, as that is believed to render a return
to one’s native land impossible. They feel as if it would shut them off
from all intercourse with relatives after death. They would lose the
power of doing good to those once loved, and evil to those who deserved
their revenge. Take the case of the slaves in the yoke, singing songs of
hate and revenge against those who sold them into slavery. They thought
it right so to harbor hatred, though most of the party had been sold for
crimes——adultery, stealing etc,——which they knew to be sins.”

In Central Africa one is struck with the fact that children have so
few games. Life is a serious business, and amusement is derived from
imitating the vocations of their parents——hut building, making little
gardens, bows and arrows, shields and spears. In Southern Africa boys
are very ingenious little fellows and have several games. They shoot
birds with bows and arrows, practice with the kiri, and teach linnets to
sing. They are expert at making guns and traps for small animals, and in
making and using bird-lime. They make play guns with a trigger which go
off with a spring and have cotton fluff as smoke. They shoot locusts very
cleverly with these toy guns.

[Illustration: DINKA CATTLE HERD.]

Desperate as Livingstone’s last undertaking seemed, he was well equipped
for it by the receipt of fifty-seven porters sent up from Zanzibar by
Stanley and a supply of cattle and donkeys. He found that much cotton was
cultivated on the shores of Tanganyika, that the highlands surrounding
the lake are cut into deep ravines, and that game was plenty everywhere,
elephants, buffaloes, water buck, rhinoceri, hippopotami, zebras. The
lake puts off numerous arms or bays into the mountains, some of which are
of great width, cutting off travel entirely except at a distance from its

Even before he had rounded the southern end of Tanganyika, he was out
of heart with the experiment of using donkeys as carriers. He had all
along contended that this hardy animal could be taken through regions
infested with the deadly tsetse fly, even though horses, mules, dogs and
oxen might perish. But he, for a second time, witnessed the death of one
donkey after another from the bites of the African pest-fly. His cattle
fared somewhat better, this time, but even they proved a poor means of
keeping up a food supply, being apt to wander, subject to swellings from
fly-stings, and a constant invitation to raiders. True, he escaped this
last calamity, but other travelers in different parts of Africa have been
less fortunate, as their accounts show.

As he passed down into the section which furnishes the head-streams of
Lake Moero, the rains descended in volumes, the streams were swollen,
the people were unkind, and travel became dismal and difficult, beyond
any former experience. He was troubled with sickness and the desertion
of his men. A leopard broke into his camp, at night, and attacked
a woman carrier. Her screams frightened his last donkey and it ran
away. The slave traders had stirred up the villages, so that trade for
the necessaries of life was always difficult. He found the country a
succession of hills and plains, forests and high grasses, with every
evidence of great fertility. Dura, or the flour of sorghum seed,
furnishes the staple food. His narrative of the streams he crossed is
bewildering, but it shows the great plentitude of these Congo sources
and quite reconciles one to the mighty volume of that magnificent river.
With such an abundance of lively sources it must very largely defy active
Equatorial evaporation and be at all seasons a surely navigable and
valuable commercial water-way.

The sponges were now all full from the continuous rains, so that a stream
100 feet wide, had to be approached through a bog of twice that width.
His last cow died, and he was wholly dependent on the natives for food.
Pushing on, and bearing gently westward, he came into the immediate
region of Bangweola. All around was flat, water-covered plain, alive with
elephants and other large game. Every camping place was infested with
ants. Life was miserable for the entire party, and Livingstone himself
was so weak as to be incapable of passing the river and swamps, except by
being carried.

He entered the lake with canoes, and pushed off to one of its numerous
islands, or at least what he supposed to be an island, though it
afterwards turned out to be only a rise in the plain which surrounds the
true lake, and which was then entirely water-covered. The Basiba people
occupy the northern shore of the lake. They proved to be hospitable and
supplied plenty of fish and fowls with an occasional sheep. At every
village a party of male and female drummers and dancers turned up, who
gave music and exhibitions in dancing.

Crossing the mouth of the Chambesi in canoes, and entering the Kabinga
country, he found a cattle raising section, though the cattle are wild.
Elephants were plenty and very destructive of crops. The entire country
about the lake was reedy and flooded. Many of the depressions in the
plain were now arms of the lake, extending for twenty or thirty miles
and so wide as to be seen across with difficulty. The journey now was
mostly by canoes, and the camps were on elevations in the plain, which
were now islands. Lions made the night hideous with their roaring. Fish
and other food was abundant. The mouth of river after river was passed
as it debouched into the lake. Livingstone grows weaker with every
days’ exertion. It is only by the most herculean effort that he reaches
Chitambo on the south side of the lake. His ability to observe and note
has passed away. His power as a traveler and explorer is gone. Death
seized him in Chitambo’s village, and his faithful Chuma and Susi bore
his remains to the coast for transport to England.

We know of the Chambesi, of Lake Bangweola, of the Luapula, of Lake
Moero, of the Lualaba, and of this magnificent section of the Upper
Congo basin, from Livingstone. True, we know little of it, because the
heroic traveler was sick unto death while threading the mazes of forest
and plain which give character to the section. But he has given such an
inkling of its wonderful resources of soil, animal life and people as to
create fresh interest in the region and furnish supplementary evidence to
all that has been said or dreamed of the wealth of the Congo basin.

The last of the sections into which Stanley divides the Congo basin is
that of Tanganyika. This great lake is 391 miles long and 24 broad, with
an area of 9400 square miles. The territory about the lake, belonging
to the Congo water system, embraces 93,000 square miles. It is thickly
populated, and contains probably 2,500,000 persons. The lake itself is
2750 feet above the sea, and it is bounded by mountains, north and south,
which rise from 1500 to 2500 feet above its surface. The slopes of these
mountains lead to lofty plateaus, which are fertile, densely peopled,
and well covered with cattle herds. The natives are of a superior type,
peaceably inclined and much attached to their pastoral occupations, and
to the raising of sorghum, millet and maize. At various towns on the lake
are large communities of Arab traders, the most noted being at Ujiji,
where Stanley met Livingstone on his celebrated journey of rescue. The
International Association supports a flourishing mission on the east side
of the lake, and others have been recently founded.

In general this section supports the natural products indigenous to the
Congo basin, though the oil-palm is not seen east of Ujiji. Around the
lake the natives make a larger use of the cereals, than further west,
where the banana and manioc grow more luxuriantly. There is hardly any
finer market in Africa than that of Ujiji, where may be seen for sale an
intermixture of products such as would do credit to a first-class city,
were it not for the fact that human beings often constitute one of the
articles of merchandise. On any propitious market day may be seen a full
supply of maize, millet, beans, ground-nuts, sugar-cane, wild-fruit,
palm-oil, bananas, plantains, honey, ivory, goats, sheep, cattle, fowls,
fish, tobacco, nets, copper and iron ware, cloth, barks, hoes, spears,
arrows, swords, etc., etc. On the northwest side of this section, at
Uvira, are iron works of no mean proportions, whose products are iron
wire and various iron utensils for both household and agricultural

In his recapitulation of resources, Stanley estimates the Congo basin to
contain as follows:——

                  Area in square                  Length of
     Sections.       miles.        Population.    Navigation.
  Lower Congo,          33,000        297,000            110
  Upper Congo,       1,090,000     43,884,000          5,250
  Lualaba,             246,000      4,920,000          1,100
  Chambesi,             46,000        460,000            400
  Tanganyika,           93,000      2,325,000            391
                     —————————     ——————————          —————
                     1,508,000     51,886,000          7,251

The ownership of the great basin, as determined at the Berlin conference,
is as follows:——

     Countries.             Areas.         Population.
  French Territory,         62,400           2,121,600
  Portuguese Territory,     30,700             276,300
  Unclaimed,               349,700           6,910,000
  Congo Free State,      1,065,200          42,608,000

Inquiring, exacting commerce is ever ready with practical questions. When
it has listened with attentive ear to Stanley’s bewildering estimates,
astounding calculations and captivating statements, it coldly asks what
return shall we find for our wares and for the expense and trouble of
landing them in these tropical markets? He boldly replies, you cannot
shut your eyes to the fact that Western Africa is already contributing
her half of a trade with Europe, which already exceeds $150,000,000 a
year. This comes almost exclusively from a coast line 2900 miles long.
Enlarge this line, by adding the 6000 miles of navigable waters which
are embraced in the Congo basin, and this trade by the products which
would thereby find an outlet, and you would have a traffic equal to
$500,000,000 annually. Improve this inland navigation by a railroad
around the cataracts of the Congo, enlist the sympathies and energies of
the 43,000,000 of people who inhabit the basin, or even of the 4,483,000
who dwell on navigable banks of the water-ways, give them some idea of
the incomputable wealth that is over, around and under them, and which
may be had by simply reaching for it, regard them as men and deal with
them as such, and then you will soon realize that the Congo banks are
worth far more to commerce, mile for mile, than the ocean shores. And
well might he say this, for the banks of the Congo are a succession
of villages, alive with people imbued with the trading spirit, well
acquainted with the value of oils, rubber, dye-woods and gums, anxious
for cloth, brass-rods, beads and trinkets. This cannot be said of all
places on the sea-coast. Stanley narrates that eager natives have
followed him for miles offering ivory and red wood powder for cloth,
and that when they failed to effect a trade, they would ask in despair,
“Well, what is it you do want? Tell us and we will get it for you.”

So sanguine was Stanley of the commercial situation on the Congo and in
tropical Africa that he ventured to tell the practical merchantmen of
Manchester how they could triple the commerce of the entire west coast of
Africa by building two sections of narrow gauge railway, each 52 and 95
miles long, connected by steamboat navigation, or a continuous railway of
235 miles long, around Livingstone Falls, and thereby opening the Upper
Congo to steamboats. Such a step would insure the active coöperation of
more than a million of native traders who are waiting to be told what
they can furnish out of their inexhaustible treasures, besides those
they have already set a value on, as iron, oil ground-nuts, gum, rubber,
orchilla, camwood, myrrh, frankincense, furs, skins, feathers, copper,
fibres, beeswax, nutmegs, ginger, etc.

Stanley showed how a few factories at available points for the conversion
of cruder articles into those of smaller bulk, and how the trading posts
which were sure to spring up on the site of every important village,
would gather in sufficient wares to tax the capacity of such a railroad
as he contemplated to the uttermost, and realize a handsome income on the
investment. He even gave estimates of the cost of the enterprise, which
have been borne out by the practical engineers who have since taken the
work of building it in hand.

He showed further how human and animal carriers had failed to solve the
problem of porterage around Livingstone Falls, although the interests
beyond, identified with the work of the International Association and
with Christian missions, were expending annually a sum equal to 5-1/2 per
cent. on the estimated cost of a railway.

He eloquently concludes his survey of tropical African resources thus:
“Until the latter half of the nineteenth century the world was ignorant
of what lay beyond the rapids of Isangila, or how slight was the obstacle
which lay between civilization and the broad natural highway which
cleared the dark virgin regions of Africa into two equal halves, and how
nature had found a hundred other navigable channels by which access could
be gained to her latest gift to mankind. As a unit of that mankind for
which nature reserved it, I rejoice that so large an area of the earth
still lies to be developed by the coming races; I rejoice to find that
it is not only high in value, but that it excels all other known lands
for the number and rare variety of precious gifts with which nature has
endowed it.

“Let us take North America for instance, and the richest portion of it,
viz: the Mississippi basin, to compare with the Congo basin, previous to
its development by that mixture of races called modern Americans. When
De Soto navigated the Father of Waters, and the Indians were undisputed
masters of the ample river basin, the spirit of enterprise would have
found in the natural productions some furs and timber.

“The Congo basin is, however, much more promising at the same stage of
undevelopment. The forests on the banks of the Congo are filled with
precious red-wood, lignum vitæ, mahogany and fragrant gum trees. At
their base may be found inexhaustible quantities of fossil gum, with
which the carriages and furnitures of civilized countries are varnished;
their foliage is draped with orchilla, useful for dye. The red-wood when
cut down, chipped and rasped, produces a deep crimson colored powder,
giving a valuable coloring; the creepers which hang in festoons from
the trees are generally those from which India rubber is produced, the
best of which is worth fifty cents a pound in a crude state; the nuts of
the oil palm give forth a butter which is a staple article of commerce;
while the fibres of others will make the best cordage. Among the wild
shrubs are frequently found the coffee-plant. In its plains, jungles and
swamps, luxuriate the elephants, whose teeth furnish ivory worth from two
to three dollars a pound in an unworked condition; its waters teem with
numberless herds of hippopotami, whose tusks are also valuable; furs of
the lion, leopard, monkey, otter; hides of the antelope, buffalo, goat
and cattle, may also be obtained. But what is of more value, it possesses
over 40,000,000 of moderately industrious and workable people, which the
red Indians never were. And if we speak of prospective advantages and
benefits to be derived from this late gift of nature, they are not much
inferior in number or value to those of the well developed Mississippi
valley. The copper of Lake Superior is rivalled by that of the Kwilu
valley and of Bembé. Rice, cotton, tobacco, maize, coffee, sugar and
wheat thrive equally well on the broad plains of the Congo. This is only
known after the superficial examination of a limited line which is not
much over fifty miles wide. I have heard of gold and silver, but the fact
of their existence requires confirmation and I am not disposed to touch
upon what I do not personally know.

“For climate, the Mississippi valley is superior, but a large part of the
Congo basin, at present inaccessible to the immigrant, is blessed with a
temperature under which Europeans may thrive and multiply. There is no
portion of it where the European trader may not fix his residence for
years, and develop commerce to his own profit with as little risk as is
incurred in India.

“It is specially with a view to rouse the spirit of trade that I
dilate upon the advantages possessed by the Congo basin, and not as a
field for the pauper immigrant. There are over 40,000,000 of native
paupers within the area described, who are poor and degraded already,
merely because they are compassed round by hostile forces of nature
and man, denying them contact and intercourse with the elements which
might have ameliorated the unhappiness of their condition. European
pauperism planted amongst them would soon degenerate to the low level
of aboriginal degradation. It is a cautious trader who advances, not
without the means of retreat; the enterprising mercantile factor who
with one hand receives the raw produce from the native, in exchange
for the finished product of the manufacturer’s loom——the European
middleman who has his home in Europe but his heart in Africa——is the
man who is wanted. These are they who can direct and teach the black
pauper what to gather of the multitude of things around him and in his
neighborhood. They are the missionaries of commerce, adapted for nowhere
so well as for the Congo basin, where are so many idle hands, and such
abundant opportunities all within a natural “ring fence.” Those entirely
weak-minded, irresolute and servile people who profess scepticism, and
project it before them always as a shield to hide their own cowardice
from general observation, it is not my purpose to attempt to interest in
Africa. Of the 325,000,000 of people in civilized Europe, there must be
some surely to whom the gospel of enterprise I preach will present a few
items of fact worthy of retention in the memory, and capable of inspiring
a certain amount of action. I am encouraged in this belief by the rapid
absorption of several ideas which I have promulgated during the last few
years respecting the Dark Continent. Pious missionaries have set forth
devotedly to instil in the dull mindless tribes the sacred germs of
religion; but their material difficulties are so great that the progress
they have made bears no proportion to the courage and zeal they have
exhibited. I now turn to the worldly wise traders for whose benefit and
convenience a railway must be constructed.”

                        THE WHITE MAN IN AFRICA.

On the bright, accessible side of Africa the Pharaohs built their
temples, obelisks, pyramids and sphinxes. When history dawned the seats
of Egyptian learning and splendor were already in decay. In her conquest
and plunder of a thousand years, victorious Rome met her most valiant
antagonists in Africa, and African warriors carried their standards to
the very gates of the capitol on the Tiber. In later days the Italian
republics which dotted the northern coasts of the Mediterranean found
their commercial enterprise and their ascendency on the sea challenged
by the Moorish States which comprised the Barbary coast. Still later,
when Spain was intent on conquest in America, and the establishment
of colonies which would insure the spread of the Catholic religion,
Portugal, in a kindred spirit, was pushing her way down the western coast
of Africa, acquiring titles by virtue of discovery, establishing empires
of unknown extent, founding Catholic missions and churches, striving for
commercial exaltation, till her mariners rounded the Cape of Good Hope,
turned northward on the eastern shores, and again took up the work of
colonizing, from Mozambique to the outlet of the Red Sea.

We never tire of reading the old stories of Portuguese discovery and
colonization, and our sympathies are aroused for a people who struggled
so heroically to open a new world to the civilization of the fifteenth
and sixteenth centuries. But Portuguese effort came to naught, when
measured by any modern standard of success. It was baffled by a thousand
undreamt of forces. Its failure, however, rendered conspicuous the
problem, now more pressing than ever: has the white man a natural mission
in Africa? Has not God designed it as the natural home of the dark race?
Are not all our visions of conquest and permanent redemption, through
and by means of the white races, but idle outcrops of the imagination,
or worse, but figments born of our desire to subdue and appropriate?
Can compensation come, in the form of commercial, moral or spiritual
advantage, adequate to the great sacrifice to be entailed on humanity by
substitution of white energy for that which is native to African soil and

It is not worth while to try to answer these questions in the affirmative
by appeals to old historic Egypt, to Greek or Roman occupancy, to
Arab and Mohammedan ascendancy, to Portuguese conquest and missionary
enterprise, to the weird adventures and sad fates of the school of
intrepid explorers which preceded and followed the redoubtable Scotchman,
Mungo Park, nor to the long role of efforts and enterprises made by the
respective nations of Europe to acquire rich slices of African territory,
after Portugal began to lose her commercial grip, and after foreign
colonization became a European ambition. No, for as yet nothing appears
to show that the white man had a mission in Africa, except to gratify
his home ambitions, cater to his European pride, satisfy his desire
to pilfer, burn and murder. There is no thought yet manifest that the
redemption of Africa involved more than the subjugation of her people and
the forcible turning to foreign account of her resources. The question
has not as yet been asked by the ethnologist, by the grave student of
causes and effects, nor even by the calculating adventurer,——“Is there
an African destiny which admits the white races as fair and permanent
participants, or one which implies universal good when the seeming laws
of God respecting the home of nations are reversed?”

Nor does an affirmative answer to any of the above questions arise out of
England’s theft of the Cape of Good Hope, and of that sovereignty she now
maintains over the Kimberly diamond diggings and the Vaal river sections.
National greed or political finesse may excuse much, as the dark science
of diplomacy goes, but they do not make clear how far the natural order
of things can be changed with benefit to all concerned. This section of
Africa is, however, below the tropics, and perhaps does not involve the
problem of races so deeply as the equatorial regions.

Let us therefore turn to the real Africa, for further inquiry——that
Africa against which Islamism has dashed itself so repeatedly in its
efforts to reach the Equator; that Africa whose climate has beaten
back Christianity for three centuries; that Africa amid which science
has reveled, but before which legitimate trade has stood appalled——the
tropical, the new Africa.

In this connection we come upon an order of events, not to say an
era, which favors an affirmative answer to the above questions, which
plainly point, not to white encroachment, but to white existence and
possibilities in the very midst of a continent apparently destined for
other purposes. The very fact that new discoveries in Central Africa
have revealed vast populations untouched by civilization has opened
the eyes of the world to the usual processes of nation-making afresh.
Have any people ever risen out of barbarism without external help? What
is civilized Europe to-day but a grand intermingling of Greek, Roman,
Vandal, Hun, Goth, Celt, and Saracen? Had even North African influence,
in some of its better moods, succeeded in crossing the Equator, who knows
whether the savagery of the tropics might not have been extinct to-day,
or at least wholly different from what it is?

Again, the order of events have brought forth whole masses of data for
comparison, for experiment, for substantial knowledge. Who could separate
fiction from fact when running over the old, fantastic chronicles? Until
within the last fifty years the light of true scientific knowledge and
of keener commercial knowledge had not been shed on the Central African
situation. It began to dawn when Laird, in 1841, came home to England
from the Niger, more of an adventurer than any predecessor, yet with no
wild, discrepant tales, but only hard, practical truths, which commerce
welcomed and business enterprise could rely on. Legitimate traffic sprang
into line, and British trading houses, doing business on honorable terms
and for cash values, planted their agents on the Gambia, the Roquelle,
the Gold Coast, the Oil Rivers, at Gaboon and Kabinda, along thousands of
miles of coast. German houses sprang up, in honorable rivalry, throughout
the same extent, and Hamburg and Bremen steamers fairly outstripped
those of Liverpool and Glasgow. France, too, came into competition, took
permanent hold of territory, cultivated reciprocity with the natives,
studied tribal characteristics, encouraged agential responsibility,
and brought quite to the surface the problem of white occupancy and

Out of all this has grown something which is better than theory
respecting the destiny of the respective races in Africa, superior far
to all former strifes at mere land-grabbing, and empire building, and
sovereignty enrichments. European commerce with the west and southern
coast of Africa is now carried on by several regular lines of steamers,
besides those owned by numerous large trading firms. The British and
African Steam Navigation Company is a modern corporation, and employs 22
steamers. Its older rival, the West African Steamship Company, employs 9
steamers. They dispatch at least one ship a week from Liverpool to West
African ports. The Woerman line of steamers runs regularly from Hamburg,
the Portuguese line from Lisbon, and the French line from Havre. Then
there are two London lines——the Union and Donald Curry. These lines go
out heavily freighted with miscellaneous merchandise suitable for the
African peoples, among which is, unfortunately, a large per cent. of
gin and other intoxicants, and their return cargoes consist of rubber,
gum copal, palm-oil, palm kernels, ivory, ground-nuts, beeswax, cocoa,
coffee, dye-woods, mahogany, etc., gathered up at their various stopping
points. All these are indigenous African products, but it will be
observed that those which spring from a cultivated soil figure as next to
nothing in the list.

Side by side with these practical sea-going and commercial movements went
the unfolding of the interior by those indomitable men who sacrificed
personal comfort and risked life that inner Africa might be brought to
outer view. This volume is, in part, a record of their adventures and
pioneering efforts. Their names——the Bakers, Barths, Schweinfurths,
Spekes, Grants, Du Chaillus, Pintos, Livingstones, Stanleys, and
others——form a roll which for honor outranks that of the world’s greatest
generals. They have built for themselves monuments which shall outlast
those dedicated to military conquest, because on them the epitaphs will
speak of unselfish endeavor in the name of a common humanity.

What immense problems they had in hand! How heroically they struggled
with them, through tangled jungle, dark forest, dense swamps, over
plain and mountain, up, down and across unknown lakes and rivers, amid
beasts of prey and hostile peoples, in the face of rain, wind and unkind
climates! And all the while that they were toiling and dying, what weird
and wonderful revelations came, now from the Nile, with its impenetrable
sudds, its strange animal life, its teeming populations; now from the
magnificent plateaus of the centre with their mighty and enchanting
lakes, filled with strange fishes, on whose banks reveled peoples
keen for trade or war, happy, if left alone, in smiling gardens and
comfortable homes; now from the swift rolling Zambesi, shaded with mighty
forests alive with troops of monkeys, vocal with bird songs, swarming
with beasts, whose waters dashed here against curved and rocky banks,
and there headlong over rocks higher than Niagara, bearing everywhere a
burden of life in the shape of savage crocodiles, bellowing hippopotami
and ponderous rhinoceri; now from Kalihari, the great desert of the south
which balances that of the north, with stunted yet energetic populations,
its troops of zebras, ostriches, giraffes, buffaloes, elephants, lions,
leopards, making a paradise for hunters, with its salt pans, its strange
grasses and incomprehensible geology; now from the great plain regions
between the lakes and the water system of the western ocean, where are
prairies that vie in extent and fertility with those of the Mississippi
valley, where the numerous Dinkas dwell, brave in chase, rich in splendid
herds of cattle, with cosy homes, surrounded by plantations of maize
and sorghum and bananas; where also the Niam-Niams dwell, equally brave
and rich and kind, yet savage when stirred, and formidable with their
home-made iron spears and bright battle axes and swords; where too the
Monbuttus dwell, rivals of their northern neighbors in agriculture,
architecture and art, rich in corn and cattle, protected from intruders
by a standing army of agile dwarfs, who know no fear and who make
unerring use of their poisoned arrows in cunning ambuscade and in open
fields; and now from the Congo itself, stream of African streams, island
variegated in one stretch, cataract angered in another, draped with
forest foliage everywhere, bounded by fertile shores backed by endless
plains, pouring along through riches of gum, dyes, hard-woods such as
would enrich kingdoms, supporting a water life as varied and gigantic as
any other African lake or river, sustaining a population of incomputable
numbers, opening a water way into the very heart of the continent for
steamers, inviting the civilized world to come and go, partake and enjoy.

As all these surprising revelations were given to the outer world, by
the pioneers of civilization who were struggling within Africa, we began
to get new conceptions of situations whose existence never dawned on
those who were skimming the ocean’s shores and fighting the battles of
commerce. A new world had been brought to light, not only geographically,
but as to its soil, water, vegetation, animals, people, climate, and
every physical aspect. It was a world to be envied, possessed and
reclaimed, because it was one which could be made to contribute to the
wealth and happiness of all outside of it. Moreover, it was one to which
all could contribute, not only of their better material things, but of
their better social and moral things. Commerce decided at once that there
was a demand for Africa. Politics cried out for its possession. Humanity
and Christianity found a new and solemn duty in Africa.

It was not the province of the first traveler and explorer to argue
questions which belong to others and to the future. He could state what
he saw and felt——how hot the sun was, what the rain-fall, the quantity
and nature of the resources. But when he revealed and mapped a new world,
and created a desire for its possession and civilization by others,
there was no fighting shy of the problems involved in the proposed new
destiny. A thousand and one things would come up which had never arisen
before. Many of these problems are of minor moment, many momentous.
Some involve others, some are sweeping. There is one which overshadows
all. Some would ask, “How shall we go about colonizing and civilizing
Africa?” This question is the rind of an apple. At the core is another.
Can the proposed colonizers and civilizers exist in Africa? After that is
determined, we shall know pretty well how to do the rest.

Of all African explorers, Stanley has made this vital question the most
conspicuous, because he, almost alone, has coupled pioneering effort with
state building and the colonizing and civilizing process. He has been
forced to face the climatic situation since it came squarely across his
industrial and commercial plans and involved the question of capital,
which is far more sensitive and cowardly than even human life.

Stanley’s personal career in Africa, as well as his extensive experience
with others, goes far to establish the fact that the white race cannot
transfer itself bodily and permanently to tropical African soil, with the
hope of survival. The difficulty is not because it is white, but because
its customs and environment are at variance with those which perpetuate
life and conduce to labor under the Equator.

In the north temperate zone a man may believe himself capable of
persistent effort and heroic work. He may think he has intelligence,
valor and strength sufficient to sustain him under the greatest
privations. But land him in Africa and he is both witless and nerveless.
He has never learned the art of living the life that is required there.
He is not the same being he was when he started out so hopefully and
valorously. He finds he lacks equipment for his new existence, mental,
moral and physical. A sacrifice is demanded. It is the sacrifice of an
almost perfect transformation, or else the confession of failure must
conclude his career.

Stanley’s most melancholy chapters are those which narrate the oozing out
of ambitions, the confessions of cowardice, and the shirking away of his
white companions, on the discovery that their civilized lives had been
no school of preparation for healthful, energetic and useful existence
in Equatorial Africa. It was a painful study to note how in the face of
tropical realities, the fervid imaginations and exaggerated anticipations
which had led them heroically on took flight, leaving them hapless
malingerers, hopeless despondents, and unfit for anything but retreat.
He had no fault to find where brave men fell through actual physical
weakness, but the general fault, the grave, almost unpardonable mistake,
was the terrible one of not knowing what they were at home and what they
were to be in Africa. He says:——“The influence of the wine or beer, which
at the first offset from Europe had acted on their impulses like the
effect of quinine on weakened nerves, soon evaporated in a wineless land,
and with their general ignorance of adaptation to foreign circumstances,
and a steady need of the exhilarating influence of customary stimulants,
an unconquerable depression usurped the high-blown courage it inspired,
which some called nostalgia (home-sickness) and some hypochondria. Many
had also, as they themselves confessed, come out merely to see the
great river. Their imaginations had run riot amid herds of destructive
elephants, rapacious lions, charging buffaloes, bellowing hippopotami,
and repugnant rhinoceri, while the tall lithe-necked giraffe and the
graceful zebra occupied the foreground of those most unreal pictures.
Their senses had also been fired by the looks of love and admiration cast
on them by their sweethearts, as they declared their intention to ‘go out
to the Congo regions,’ while many a pleasant hour must have been spent
together as they examined the strange equipments, the elephant-rifles,
the penetrative ‘Express,’ and described in glowing terms their life in
the far off palmy lands watered by the winding Ikelemba or the mighty
Congo. Thus they had deluded themselves as well as the International
Committee, whose members looked with eyes of commendation as the inspired
heroes delivered with bated breath their unalterable resolution to ‘do or


“But death was slow to attack the valorous braves while the doable lay
largely extended before them. The latter was always present with its
exasperating plainness, its undeniable imperativeness which affronted
their ‘susceptibilities,’ and ignored their titles and rights to
distinction. The stern every-day reality, the meagre diet and forbidding
aspect, humbled their presumption. When they hear that in this land there
is neither wine nor beer, as they have known them, nor comfortable cognac
to relieve the gnawing, distressful hankering they suffered for their
usual beverages, their hearts beat more feebly. They begin to see that
those bright African images and beautiful dreams of tropical scenery
and excitement are replaced by unknown breadths of woodless regions,
exuberant only with tall spear grass and jungly scrub. The hot sun dares
them to the trial of forcing a way through such scarcely penetrable
growth. Distance and fatigue, seeming to be immense beyond any former
conception, masters their resolution; and, alas! and alas! there are no
fair maidens with golden hair to admire their noble efforts at doing and

“Conscience, or the prickings of shame, may whisper to a few not quite
lost in despondency, that there is brave work to be performed, and that
they may experience the colonist’s pleasure of seeing the vegetables,
fruit-trees and plants grow instead of that cane-grass and jungle now
covering the broad acreage. But some answer, ‘Bah! I did not come to
work; I came to hunt, to play, to eat, and to receive a big salary from
the Commission.’

“‘Do you feel fatigued? Try some hot tea or coffee.’

“‘What!’ shriek they. ‘Try Congo water! No, thank you; my stomach was
made for something better than to become a nest for young crocodiles.’”

In all the foregoing Stanley speaks of the white help that was furnished
him for his mission to found the Congo Free State. The help was of a high
grade, being composed of men who came recommended to the Commission.
They were selected for their valor and skill at home and for their
professed willingness to brave African climate and all the dangers of
exploration and colonization. They were for the most part educated men
and well qualified to engineer roads, build comfortable homes, establish
trading and military stations, carry on just commerce and exercise wise
government over consenting tribes and contiguous territories. They were
young, ambitious men, who had their fames and fortunes to make and to
whom failure at home would have been a misfortune and disgrace. Indeed,
if one had been going to pick out a body of men for the express purpose
of testing the question whether it is possible for the white races to
exist and thrive in tropical Africa, establish civilized governments,
cultivate the soil, carry on manufactures and commerce, redeem the
natives, and introduce institutions such as are found at home, these
would have been the men.

But let us see how they fared. Stanley takes one as a sample——he does not
fail to make honorable exceptions of those who behaved differently,——and
this one perhaps, the loudest professor, at the start, of heroic zeal
in his undertaking. He is conducted to the site of a newly established
station and endowed with full authority. He is given an army of forty
disciplined blacks, and two or three of his own color are left with him
as companion and assistants. He is made a rich banker for the surrounding
tribes by heaps of cloth bales, bags of beads, and bundles of
brass-rods, the bank notes of the country, with full liberty to circulate
them to the best advantage. The river at his feet swarms with fish of
edible varieties, which he may catch in plenty, if he chooses to imitate
the industry and ingenuity of the natives. The surrounding villages
are full of fowls, and eggs are plenty. Sheep and goats can always be
had, if the slightest attention is paid to their grazing and to their
protection against wild beasts. In the west, goat’s milk, and in the
centre and east, cow’s milk, can be had with little trouble. The natives,
almost everywhere, raise sweet potatoes in abundance and sell them
cheaply. Most villages have their fields of cassava, whose root yields
a wholesome food, which can be prepared in a variety of agreeable ways.
All of the ordinary garden vegetables, as tomatoes, beans, pumpkins, and
onions can be grown with easy tillage. In his commissariat are stores
of rice, canned vegetables, wheat flour, fish, meats, and soups from
Europe, together with tea, coffee, butter, jam, condensed-milk, and in
fact everything to tempt a palled palate or a weak stomach. The question
of food is therefore settled in such a manner as to require very little
exertion or sacrifice to make the supply permanent, varied and wholesome.

What else is required? A strong block house is built, and this is
surrounded by a comfortable dwelling, erected after the manner of the
neatly thatched huts of the natives, or even after the more approved
architecture of civilization, if time permits and the proper materials
are at hand. A palaver is called and whites and natives put themselves
on political and also commercial equality, with as much of social
relationship as suits the tastes of either party. The solemn treaty is
approved and promulgated, and the commandant of the station, governor of
a province, official of a great state, arbiter of the destiny of tribes,
custodian of the welfare of peoples, minister, judge, doctor, commercial
agent, the man to whom civilization is looking as founder, teacher and
exemplar; this wonderful man, so full of pride and responsibility, so
exalted with a sense of duty, so endowed with grand opportunity, is ready
for his instructions and commission. His domain is pointed out and the
fact is impressed on him that it has been acquired with the sanction
of the civilized world and that of the only parties on African soil
capable of giving consent. He is left as master and sole arbiter of all
questions that may arise, and only asked by the power that institutes him
to be just in his dealings with the peoples he is to govern, to extend
kindness to those for whom he has been made a protector, to prove that
the authority imposed has not been misplaced. He is furnished with a
written draft of instructions which is to be his code of laws, his state
constitution, his plan for founding and developing his little empire.
Could anything be more flattering to one’s ambitions? What greater
inducement could one want to exercise every latent energy, to found
deeply, build well and rule wisely? Visions of a future state, crowded
with obedient, industrious subjects, crowned with wealth and prosperity,
shedding lustre on its ruler, proclaiming to the world the success
of a first and glorious experiment, ought to stimulate even the most
indifferent to sublime endeavor.

But a few months passes, during which the embryo potentate is left to
himself. Then along comes Stanley, from an up-river journey, on a tour of
inspection. Where he expects to see his block-house and cottages expanded
into a substantial village, he witnesses only roofless structures,
exposed goods and every evidence of decay. Rank weeds grow where a site
had been cleared for a vegetable garden, and the forest is asserting
itself on the ground prepared for a banana orchard. Perhaps the natives
have been angered, for they hold the capital in a state of siege, the
stores are empty and grim famine stalks where plenty should have reigned.
Or else, not being bloody-minded, they withhold their help and presence,
and leave a trading mart to perish through sheer disinclination to
traffic. He who was to have been a ruler is worse off than a subject.
Where ambition should have stimulated, indifference prevails. Industry
has been lost in idleness. Glory has ended in shame. One word of comment,
one look of reproach, brings a resignation and an abandonment, and the
once proud adventurer who went out to see and conquer strange worlds,
beats a hasty retreat to his comfortable European home to curse his
folly and denounce the spirit that sought to sacrifice him. Failure is
written between every line of the long story with which he regales his
friends as he drops back into his old haunts and resumes the thread of
civilized life, once so willingly broken by dreams of glory, wealth and
humanitarian good.

It may seem a surprise to the reader that Africa could so disillusion
enthusiasts of the character above described. But he has only to follow
Stanley along the line of the Congo, from one station to the other,
and witness his disappointment on his return journey, to ascertain how
frequent the failures were to improve opportunity or make even the
slightest show of progress in building and cultivating. Nay more, since
nothing could stand still, the signs of retrogression were still more
frequent, and ruin marked the spots which he had dedicated to enterprise
and prosperity. Why were these men so radically transformed? This is a
mighty question. Was it the fault of Africa or of Europe?

Stanley reasons thus: “The conditions of a healthy enjoyment of life in
Africa are very little understood by men of this class. It is a difficult
thing to impart to them the rudiments of the lesson of life. It is a most
thankless task, and the effort to do so is so ungraciously received that
I have often been repelled by the visible signs of non-appreciation.
Rarely have I been encouraged to proceed by those to whom counsel was
addressed. They do not seem to take any interest in what concerns
their own health. They duly acknowledge that it is a duty they owe to
themselves to be as careful as possible; they are civil with replies and
ready with promises of amendment. But they do not practice what they
promise, and that active zeal and watchful prudence which would seem to
govern one who loves his own life and welfare I rarely see exhibited. The
performance appears to be too irksome, and neither their intelligence nor
their conscience is provoked to assist them. I remember Frank Pocock, who
must (almost as the sound of my voice died away) have been meditating on
that step by which he lost his life, and which caused me, for months, a
pang of sorrow, each time I thought of his sad end.

“I have observed also that not only in matters of self-preservation is
this apathy evident, but that it is present in the every day duty of the
expedition, which they are pledged to perform and for which they receive
compensation. Any single order they will perform well and creditably,
but if I accompany it with the expression of a hope that they will
consider it a daily duty, the order becomes at once inoperative and is
never observed. I have observed that such an order is too general to be
followed; but a particular order will be mechanically obeyed. A promise
of promotion, or higher pay, or a display of tender solicitude, creates
no impression, and as yet I know of no motive powerful enough to excite a
European or West African aborigine to distinguish himself by an assiduous
interest in general work. The only people on whom my words created a
prolonged impression were the foreign colored employes. Now to what may
I attribute this absence of intelligent interest in their work which is
characteristic of the European and the west coast native? Is it to the
climate? Then why did it not affect all alike? Why did it not affect

“But of all the rabid absurdities I have encountered in the tropics, the
preaching of a young fool on the merits of intoxicants, who has heard it
from an old fool that there is nothing like whiskey, astonishes me most.
Mr. Puffyface, while in a semi-maudlin state, has been heard declaring,
in the hearing of a youthful enthusiast, that ‘after fourteen years’
experience with the African fever, despite all that may be said against
it, there is nothing like whiskey for curing it,’ For the benefit of
after-comers let me prick this bloated bubble. Show me one of those old
bloaters on the west coast of Africa and I will show you a sham and
delusion. A few hours’ hard work in the interior would lay the lazy lion
as low as a dead donkey. Gin and whiskey topers have lived long elsewhere
than on the Niger and Congo, but if you meet him on the African coast a
glance at his shirt will tell you the whole truth. If it is free from
stains of bodily exudation, then he has simply been ‘sojering,’ and it
will be difficult to say how long a time must elapse before the liver
shows a deadly abscess or becomes indurated. But if you want to do
humanity a kindness, trot him out on a ten-mile march through the African
wilderness, and note the result.

“On the Congo, where men must work and bodily movement is compulsory, the
very atmosphere seems to be fatally hostile to men who pin their faith
on whiskey, gin and brandy. They invariably succumb and are a constant
source of anxiety and expense. Even if they are not finally buried out of
sight and memory, they are so utterly helpless, diseases germinate in
them with such frightful rapidity, symptoms of insanity are so frequent,
mind-vacancy and semi-paralysis are so common, that they are hurried
homeward, lest they draw down a few more curses on Africa which apply
only to themselves.

“The evils of brandy and soda in India need only be remembered to prove
how pernicious is the suicidal habit of indulgence in alcoholic liquors
in hot climates. The west coast of Africa is also too much indebted to
the ruin effected by intemperance.

“But it is my belief that the other extreme is unwise. To abstain
entirely from drinking wine because intemperance is madness, is not
what I inculcate, nor do I even recommend drinking in what is called
moderation. I do not advocate ‘liquoring up’ at any time, provided the
drinker keeps within the limits of sobriety. I advise no one, in the
tropics, to touch liquor during the hours of daylight, unless prescribed
by a medical man. Wine, good red or white wine, should be taken only
after sunset at dinner. Then it should be watered and taken in moderate
quantities, that it may sooth the nerves and conduce to early sleep.
After a full night’s rest, one will rise with a clear head and clean
tongue, and can as easily do a full day’s work in the tropics as in the
temperate latitudes.”


Stanley then goes on to correct misapprehensions about African climate
and lay down rules of conduct which, if followed, would go far to insure
a healthful condition. He takes a young European adventurer to the Congo,
full of health and of the spirit of adventure. As soon as the anchor
drops at Banana Point, the young man feels the perspiration exuding
till his flannels, comfortable at sea, become almost unendurable. On
stepping ashore the warmth increases and the flannels absorb perspiration
till they cling to the body and oppress him with their weight. The
underclothing is saturated, and he resembles a water-jug covered with
woolen cloth. The youth makes an escape from this melting heat of 100°
to 115° by going to the veranda of some friendly quarters. Here he does
not observe that the temperature is 25° cooler, but mops his brow, fans
himself, lolls in his easy chair, and sighs at the oppressiveness.
Presently some one recommends the reviving quality of wine. Anything to
lift him out of the condition he is in! One drink gives him freshness
and courage. Another reconciles him to the strange situation. A
third produces conviviality, and then, in the midst of story-telling
companions, who spin rare old yarns of coast fevers, elephant adventures,
crocodile attacks, hippo-escapades, “nigger” sensations, evening draws
on. There is dinner and more wine. Then comes the veranda again. It
is now cool, delicious, inviting. He has forgotten his damp clothing.
Bed-time comes. He retires to toss till morning, or to sleep in the
midst of horrid dreams. When he rises, he is unwell. His tongue is
furred and a strange lassitude pervades his body. Nausea sets in. In a
few hours his face is flushed, his eyes water, his pulse runs high. The
doctor is called, and he pronounces it a case of African fever. He is
given a kind native nurse. The battle of sickness is fought to an end.
Death may ensue, but the chances are always in favor of recovery, though
convalescence is slow.

Of a score who have witnessed this sight, each will have a theory. One
will say, “What a pity he left his mother!” Another, “It must have been
some organic weakness.” Another, “It was hereditary.” Another will cry
out, “One more African victim!” The last one, and he as if in doubt and
in an undertone, may venture to surmise that too much Portuguese wine may
have been at the bottom of it——which is as bad as brandy.

The truth of the matter is, ignorance was at the bottom of it all. The
young man may not have thought he was sitting in a cool night air,
according to his European notions of temperature, but an evening in
Africa, or a draught of air, presents as dangerous a contrast with
midday heat, or as insidious a cause for congestion, as in any other
country. Stanley suffered with 120 attacks of fever, great and slight,
and endured fully 100 of them before he began to suspect that other
causes existed for them besides malaria and miasma, or that he had within
himself a better preventive than quinine. His observations, directed
toward the last to this one point, utterly astounded him with the fact
that the most sickness might have been witnessed at those stations which
were not surrounded by putrifying vegetation, but had been selected so
as to secure the highest degree of health. Old Vivi is one of these
spots, situated on a rocky platform, with steep drainage, and with the
majestic river dashing off between the slopes of high mountains for a
distance of forty miles. Yet Old Vivi is, with the exception of Manyanga,
the sickliest spot in all the Congo Free State, according to his
observations. If all preconceived notions of health had been correct, Old
Vivi should be the healthiest spot on the Congo, certainly far more so
than scores of the Upper Congo stations, situated within ten feet of the
water’s edge and surrounded by hundreds of square miles of flat, black
loam covered with dense, damp forests. Yet to dispatch the fever-stricken
and emaciated sojourners of Old Vivi, Manyanga or Leopoldville to some
one of these upper, isolated and shaded stations, proved to be like
sending them to a sanitarium in the pine-woods or by the sea shore. The
change is simply astounding. The patient takes on flesh, grows ruddy,
healthful, pliant and hopeful.

Stanley had much anxiety about the station at Kinshassa, because it was
so low-lying, though in every other way convenient. But, strange to
say, one of his commandants who was always feverish at Vivi, Manyanga
and Leopoldville, escaped without an attack of fever, or any other
indisposition, for eighteen months, when stationed at Kinshassa. He was
equally anxious about Equator Station, situated as it was directly under
the Equator. But the commandants all praise the climate as capital,
with plenty of native products at hand, and no need of anything foreign
except a little tea and coffee. Of the 29 Europeans in the service of the
Congo Free State above Leopoldville, all served their three year term of
service except two who were drowned, one who died of sickness and one who
resigned on account of severe illness. The inference from these facts is
that the nearer the coast the stations are and the more accessible they
are by steamers, the better the facilities are for stores of whiskey,
brandy and wines, whose free use is an invitation to African sickness.
Also, that the further inland one goes the more experience he acquires as
to the means of preserving health. Every day’s march inland is a species
of acclimatization and a removal from temptation. It is a putting off of
ignorance and a putting on of knowledge. Again, the farther up the Congo
one goes the more he is freed from the draughts which haunt the cañons
of the lower streams. While Vivi is an ideal spot so far as every visible
hygienic consideration goes, it is at the top of an immense funnel with
its wide end toward the sea, and the sea breezes sweep up the channel
with cumulative vigor, producing a difference of temperature between
day and night, or shade and sunshine, which is fatal to the overheated
toiler. And the same may be said of Manyanga and Leopoldville. But the
wide, lacustrine stretches of Stanley Pool dissipate this deadly draught
and equalize the day and night and sunshine and shade temperatures. Thus
inner Central Africa becomes even healthier than the coast rind, as it
were by natural laws. From which arises the strange anomaly that at the
Equator it is not African heat a foreigner need dread so much as African

Yet no precaution against the oppressive heat must be neglected. And
this precaution must become a law of life. It must not be spasmodic and
remitting, but must be daily and hourly, in fact must be persisted in
till the whole habit conforms to the environment, just as at home amid
civilization. Captain Benton, after his visit to the Congo, proclaimed
beef and beer as the true fortifying agents against the climate. Stanley
says nay. Beef, he admits to be all right, in the sense of good,
nourishing food. But, not beef alone, so much as that wholesome variety
found in well cooked beef, mutton, game, fish and fowl, intermixed
with potatoes, turnips, cabbages, beets, carrots, bread, butter, tea
and coffee. Beers of civilization are too bilious for Africa, and the
distilled spirits are fatally stimulating, leading up to a false courage
which may tempt one to too much effort or to dangerous exposure to the
sun’s rays. The Duke of Wellington’s health receipt for India is equally
good in Africa: “I know of but one receipt for good health in this
country, and that is to live moderately, drink little or no wine, use
exercise, keep the mind employed, keep in a good humor with the world.
The last is the most difficult, for I have often observed, there is
scarcely a good-tempered man in India.”

Moderation is the key to health in central Africa. It must be moderation
in action, food and drink. Yet there must be engagement of body and
mind, great good humor, contentment with surroundings. A lesson in these
respects might be learned from the natives. It is often and truthfully
said, that they are the happiest and freest from care of any people on
the face of the globe. “Take no thought of the morrow, for ye know not
what a day may bring forth,” is the gospel of health among Africans.
Prodigal nature helps them to a philosophy, which we may call shiftless
ease, happy-go-lucky-effort, or go-as-you-please contentment, but it,
nevertheless, is only a crude modification of our more deliberately
framed and higher sounding hygienic codes for the preservation of health
when we are in their land and subject to their climate and conditions of
living and working.

Stanley exemplifies the effect of African cold in another way. In
ascending the Congo in his steamers, the entire party enjoyed excellent
health, notwithstanding the confinement to the stream and the almost
continuous passage through reedy islands and along low, swampy shores.
But on the descent, the swifter passage of the boats in the face of the
prevailing west winds, and river draughts, produced a chill, during
moments of inaction, which prostrated many of the crew, and resulted in
serious cases of sickness. Anywhere under shelter, the body continued
to perspire insensibly, but the moment it was struck by the wind, there
resulted a condition which invariably ended in low fever.

For the ill-health due to African cold, especially where the situation
is like that at Vivi, the rainy season is a corrective, because then the
cold winds cease and the temperature is uniform. But at the same time,
the rainy season is the prelude to sickness in the lower and better
protected situations. The Livingstone Congo Mission at Manteka is in a
snug nest between high hills, entirely cut off from winds, and surrounded
by beautiful gardens of bananas and papaws. Ordinarily it is a healthful
spot, and ought to be so always, if freedom from exposure is a law of
health. But after the rainy season it is unhealthy. A peculiarly clear
atmosphere and a correspondingly hot sun follow the African rains. These
cause rapid earth exhalations which rise up around the body like a
cloud, and soon deluge the person with perspiration. These exhalations
bear the odors of decaying vegetation and become as pernicious as the
effluvia from a dung-heap, unless resort is had to the heat of stoves or
fire-places to counteract their deadly effects. Due care in this respect
is all that is required to insure immunity from sickness caused by these

Even the plateaus are not exempt from fevers. But they for the most
part are covered with long grass. Vegetation so luxuriant, falling and
decaying, constantly fermenting and fertilizing, would be a source of
sickness anywhere. When once they are cleared and planted to corn, wheat
or vegetables, this source of sickness will disappear. A well ventilated
home, in the midst of a cleared and cultivated plateau, is as healthful
in Africa as in any other part of the world. The lessons of health taught
daily by the natives ought to be a constant study for foreigners. They
fight entirely shy of the cañons of the Congo, whereas at Stanley Pool
there is an army of ivory-traders. Then the immediate banks of the river
are comparatively deserted, except where the spaces are open. The gorges,
and deep valleys of tributaries, are by no means favorite dwelling
places, though they are too often the sites of mission-houses and trading
posts. The fetishes of the natives could not prevail against disease in
the hollows and shaded nooks of their land, nor can the drugs of the
white races. The native seeks a cleared space, open to sunshine, elevated
so as to insure circulation of air, and for the most part, he looks down
on the less favorable abodes of the foreigner.

Stanley summarizes the causes of ill-health in Africa, and arranges
them in the order of effectiveness. He gives as the most serious (1)
cold draughts. (2) Malarious hollows. (3) Intemperate living. (4) Lack
of nourishing food. (5) Physical weakness, indolence of mind and body,
general fool-hardiness. One source of encouragement became manifest as
years rolled by, and that was the constant diminution of illness among
the officials of the Congo Free State. This was in some degree due to the
doctrine of “survival of the fittest,” looked upon from a constitutional
standpoint, but in the main to the willingness of the survivors to learn,
and their learning consisted in putting away the habits they had formed
abroad and the assumption of those which fitted their new estate.

Owing to the formation of the African continent, with its fringe of low
land and its miles of slope up to the central plateau, the prevailing
winds sweep inland from the ocean, over the pestilential lowlands,
bearing the seeds of disease. This meteorological law must be met by the
inland dwellers, in order to secure immunity from disease. And it can be
met very readily, as experience proves, by the planting of tree barriers
on the ocean side of residences and plantations.

Stanley’s observations thus far relate to the climatology of central
Africa as affecting the health of the white resident. He next discusses
the question of tropical heat as it affects the effort of the white
races. The intensity of the Congo heat is by no means such as the casual
reader would suspect. An average of the highest temperatures in the year
gives a mean of only 90°, while that of the lowest gives a mean of 67°.
Clad in suitable clothes a European or American can do as much work in a
day in Africa as at home, provided he works under an awning or roof. In
the sun, the temperature is, of a clear day, as much as 115°, which would
be fatal to one standing still. The ill-effects of such a heat are seldom
apparent on a march, though for the comfort of all concerned Stanley
usually limited his marching hours to from 6 A.M. to 11 A.M., thus giving
ample time to prepare evening camps and to rest, feed and recuperate.

In tropical Africa there is manifest coolness for three months of the
year. During the other nine months there is so much cloud and such an
abundance of tempering breezes, as to prevent that intense heat which
one would expect under the Equator or within the tropics. The nights are
seldom oppressive, and though in temperate latitudes one might not feel
the need of a blanket, such an article becomes an indispensable luxury in

At any point where facilities offer, as at a factory, trading station
or mission, there is no need of exposure to the sun during work hours.
Awnings are, or should be, a part of the equipment of every white African
sojourner, but if these are wanting the trees are plenty, and their
gracious shade will answer as a substitute. Few craftsmen in any country
are compelled to work without cover, and it requires but an extension of
the rule to make labor safe in Africa.

Exercise of any kind in Africa induces copious perspiration, and it
should never be forgotten that between a state of action in the sun, or
even under cover, and a state of rest in the shade, means a difference in
temperature equal to 25°. This is a sure cause of congestion and other
bodily derangements. It is the one invariable climatic law in Africa, and
is wholly different from that at Para, where the variations are only 9°,
thus insuring immunity from all diseases which have a cause in sudden
or radical changes of temperature. Climatic inequality is deadlier in
Equatorial Africa than its malaria. Yet it can be guarded against, and
that too by the simplest precautions.

The early explorers, pioneers and commercial agents in Africa, especially
on the west coast, were ignorant of the foregoing facts. Hence so many
of them lost their lives needlessly. Hence the terrible stories borne
home of the deadly effect of African heat and climate. They had never
studied the law of adaptation, and instead of helping to solve the
problem of white occupancy they only contributed to its defeat. In the
wiser experience of Stanley a secret has been brought forth which, in
its bearing upon the future of the country, is not even surpassed in
importance by the opening of the Congo itself.

Tropical food is of as much moment to a foreigner as climate. It is clear
that alcoholic stimulants are dangerous. Tea has a depressing tendency
and the same may be said of coffee, though both are grateful, for a time
at least. Cocoa tends to biliousness. Milk is hard to obtain on the west
coast, though it may be had in the cattle producing sections of the
centre and east. Soup implies fresh meat, and is therefore limited to
the broth of the goat, sheep or chicken, unless it come in canned shape.
Palm-wine, except when fresh, injures the kidneys and stomach. All taste
is soon lost for the canned goods of civilization. Flour, rice and the
native fruits and vegetables are wholesome standards.

Stanley’s code of health for the white sojourner in Africa would be as

Never build a house, factory or mission in a ravine or valley which may
serve as a wind channel. Air must diffuse itself generally and gently.
Points near the sea, plateaus and open plains are the safest localities
for homes. All lower stories should be clear of the ground. In grassy
sections the first floor should be elevated to the height of a second

Avoid all unnecessary exposure to the sun.

Guard against fogs, dews, exhalations, and night chills, by kindling

Preserve a generous diet, avoiding oily and fatty foods.

Meats should not be eaten in large quantities at breakfast.

Take an early dinner, say at 11 o’clock, and let it be of meats, fish and
vegetables. Cease work till 1 P.M.

Quit work at 6 P.M., and eat a second dinner, boiled fish, roast fowl or
mutton, with plenty of vegetables. A glass of watered wine will not hurt

Seek amusement in social conversation, reading or games, till 9 P.M., and
then retire.

Sleep on blankets, and cover with a blanket.

If marching, rise at 5 A.M., march at 6, and halt for the day at 11 A.M.
When halted, seek shelter and put on a heavier coat.

Observe the strictest temperance. Don’t indulge in tonics or nostrums.
A little quinine is the safest tonic. If thirsty drop an acid powder in
your drinking water, or take a sip of cold tea.

Use an umbrella when in the sun. The best head dress is a cork helmet, or
Congo cap.

If in a perspiration when wetted by rain or at a river crossing, change
your dress immediately.

Go on a march in very light clothing, and let it be of flannel, with
light russet shoes for the feet.

When permanently stationed, wear light clothing in order to avoid
excessive perspiration when called on for sudden duty.

Don’t fail to exercise freely. Have certain hours for it, morning and
evening, if your work is in doors.

Do not bathe in cold water, especially after you are in the country for a
time. Water below 85° in temperature is dangerous.

Tropical fruits should be eaten only at breakfast.

Medicines specially prepared for tropical diseases can always be had of
European druggists, and a supply should be on hand.

The diseases of central Africa are simple, consisting of dysentery and
three kinds of fever, ague, remittent, and bilious.

Common ague is never fatal. It may be prevented, if one observes the

The remittent fever is simply aggravated ague, it may last for several

The bilious fever is often pernicious. Its severity depends on the
habits of the patient, the amount of exposure which produced it, and the
strength of the constitution. It is preventable, but not by brandy or
excessive smoking, as many foolish people think.

Dr. Martin, in his work on the “Influences of Tropical Climates,” also
lays down a code which is both interesting and valuable.

1. Care in diet, clothing and exercise are more essential for the
preservation of health than medical treatment.

2. The real way to escape disease is by observing strict temperance, and
to moderate the heat by all possible means.

3. After heat has morbifically predisposed the body, the sudden influence
of cold has the most baneful effect on the human frame.

4. The great physiological rule for preserving health in hot climates is
to keep the body cool. Common sense points out the propriety of avoiding
heating drinks.

5. The cold bath is death in the collapse which follows any great fatigue
of body or mind.

6. Licentious indulgence is far more dangerous and destructive than in

7. A large amount of animal food, instead of giving strength, heats the
blood, renders the system feverish, and consequently weakens the whole

8. Bread is one of the best articles of diet. Rice and split vetches are
wholesome and nutritious. Vegetables are essential to good health, as
carrots, turnips, onions, native greens, etc.

9. Fruit, when sound and ripe, is beneficial rather than hurtful.

10. The same amount of stimulant undiluted, is much more injurious than
when mixed with water.

11. With ordinary precaution and attention to the common laws of hygiene,
Europeans may live as long in the tropics as anywhere else.

Stanley’s final observation on the existence of the white race in Africa
does not smack of the confidence he has thus far striven to inspire. Yet
it does not suggest an impossibility, nor anything difficult to carry
out, since the continent is so contiguous to Europe. He recommends a
change of scene to the African denizen for at least three months in a
year, because the constant high temperature assisted by the monotony
and poverty of diet, is enervating and depressing. The physical system
becomes debilitated by the heat, necessitating after a few years such
recuperation as can be found only in temperate latitudes. Even with
persons who retain health, this enervating feeling begins to dawn at
the end of eighteen mouths; hence traders, missionaries, planters and
agriculturists, who hope to keep up buoyancy of spirit and such a
condition of body as will resist the climate through a lifetime, should
seek the periodical relaxation to be found in trips to higher latitudes.

While this may not be giving his whole case away, or indeed suggesting
nothing more than such change of scene as our own physicians recommend
to overtaxed business men, it, nevertheless, brings up the ultimate
question of natural and permanent fitness. Suppose that all fear of
African climate is eliminated from the mind of the white man. Suppose
it is settled that he can survive there to a good old age, by using
the precautions herein laid down. Will any traveler, climatologist or
ethnologist arise and tell us that the white man can escape physical
degeneracy in the tropics? As his African offspring come and go for a
few generations, will there not be a gradual loss of the hardihood which
temperate climates encourage, and a gradual growth of that languor and
effeminacy which equatorial climates engender? The presence of the white
races in Africa can neither reverse the laws of their existence and
growth, nor the laws which God has given to a tropical realm. Living
nature, including man, is simply obedience to an environment. We agree
to this in the vegetable world. The oak of our forest is the puny lichen
of the arctic regions. The palm of the tropics withers before northern
frost. Reverse the order, and the lichen dries up beneath a tropical sun.
The oak finds nothing congenial in African soil. As to the lower animals,
it is the same. Stanley found both mule and donkey power ineffective on
the Congo. Livingstone’s mules were bitten by the tsetse fly on Nyassa
and died a miserable death from ulcers. The horse dwindles away within
the tropics. The camel fared no better than the mule with Livingstone,
though the Arab may be said to have conquered the Great Sahara with it,
and Col. Baker used it to overcome Nile distances which defied his
boats. Even the native and trained buffalo was a failure with Livingstone
when he attempted to make it a beast of burden through Nyassaland and
into the Upper Congo section, notwithstanding the fact that it had been
invaluable to him below the tropics, and in the form of the native ox is
in daily use as a beast of burden and travel in the Kalihari regions. So
take the elephant, lion, leopard, hippopotamus, alligator, soko, monkey,
the birds, the fishes, and transport them north; how quickly they cease
to propagate, and in the end perish! Thus far living nature seems to obey
the immutable law of environment. It is equally so with the higher animal
life which we find in man. The negroes, who were torn from their native
soil by the cruel hand of slavery, could not be transplanted with success
in latitudes remote from the tropics. It cannot yet be proved that the
white races will deteriorate and grow effeminate in tropical Africa,
but as to other tropical countries it is established that white energy
is gradually lost in effeminacy wherever it persists in the unnatural
attempt to face the eternal blaze of the equatorial sun.


It is well to study these things amid the glowing imagery of African
vegetation, soil and resource, the unseemly scamper of the nations for
African possessions, the enthusiasm over Christian conquest and heathen
redemption. The real transforming power of the continent may not be at
all in white occupancy; it cannot be, if such occupancy means white
degeneracy, or such a sacrifice as the situation does not warrant. But
it may lie, more wholly than any one living suspects, in the natives
themselves, assisted and encouraged by the leaven of civilization,
gradually introduced. They are there naturally and for a purpose. God
will not alter his laws, and man cannot, brave as the latter may be, fond
as he may be of possession and power, lustful as he may be of wealth,
boastful as he may be of his civilization, proud as he may be of his
humanitarianism, desirous as he may be to convert and Christianize.
Africa means 200,000,000 of people, backed by a peculiar climate,
fortified by an environment which is as old as the beginning of things.
Let the civilization which is foreign to it all beware how it strikes it,
lest, in the end, the effort prove a sad confession of failure. The good
which is to come out of African elevation should be reciprocal. It is not
good if it presupposes white occupancy followed by white degeneracy.

Centuries ago the brave, enthusiastic Saracen, propagandist of a faith,
warrior for the sake of Mohammed, left his Arabian home and went forth
into pagan Africa on a mission of conquest and conversion. Granting that
Egypt, the Barbary States and the Oases of the Sahara are better off
to-day than they were when they first caught sight of the victorious
banners of the crescent, which is admitting all the truth will allow,
how much superior to the chivalrous Saracen is the bigoted Mahdi, his
depraved Soudan follower, or the Arab slave stealer, who is ubiquitous in
east-central Africa to-day? There is a wonderful, a sad, descent from the
Saracen conqueror to a benighted Mahdist. The contrast between a chief
of Arabian troopers and such a chief as Tippoo Tib is enough to show
degeneracy of the most ultra type. The brave, fiery Saracen, sweeping
along the coasts and through the deserts, was a being infinitely superior
to anything he came in contact with. His progeny, after centuries of
acclimatization and intercourse with the native populations, is a lazy,
inferior being, a curse to his surroundings, not half such a man as the
native whom he plunders and carries off as human booty. He has failed to
lift Africa to the height of a Mohammedan civilization, and has descended
to a level even lower than the paganism with which he came in contact.
Do not forget that in many respects he had adaptation superior to that
any European or American can claim. He was contiguous to Africa. He had
been reared under a burning sun. His color was dark. His heath was sandy
like the sands of Egypt and Sahara. His ship was the camel which became
the courser of the African wastes and by means of which he could connect
the Nile bends more swiftly than we can do to-day with steamers. He had
all the enthusiasm and persistency of a Christian missionary, all the
ardor of an English merchant, all the vigor of a civilized pioneer, all
the desire for possession of a monarchical potentate. Yet he degenerated
into a thief of men and a murderer of innocence. The least respected,
the crudest and most useless man on the face of the globe to-day is an
Arab slave catcher. The chivalry of his fathers has no place in his
bosom. The industry and the sense of beauty and refinement which the
Moor carried northward into Spain were utterly lost in the swing toward
the tropics. The Allah and Koran of Mecca are profane mummery in the
Soudan, at Zanzibar, and on the banks of Tanganyika. It is not necessary
to inquire what inherent causes helped to contribute to this deplorable
result. We know that vital defects existed in the Mohammedan system, and
that these defects were in part to blame. The only inquiry we make is,
how much of that result was due to the African climate, the impact with
tropical peoples and customs, the equatorial environment? For some cause,
or better still, for all causes combined, the last end of the Arab in
Africa is worse than the first.

If we study the impact on Africa of the Christian civilization of
Portugal and even that of England, in its earlier stages, the result is
not encouraging. The ruins of both trading and mission posts are sad
witnesses of a misunderstanding of the true situation, or else monuments
of a surrender to climatic difficulties which had not been anticipated.
Our civilization was called off from a mad chase after the impossible,
and it required years, even centuries, of consideration, before it dared
a second attempt. In the meantime it learned much and in various ways.
Inert, supine Portugal taught valuable lessons by her very incapacity.
Patient Holland gave a valuable object lesson by peaceable conquests
and her amalgamation with the South African peoples. All-conquering,
commercial and Christian England afterwards came along to gather the
harvests which others had sowed, yet to prove that something valuable
in the shape of permanent colonization could be effected south of the
tropics, and with mutual advantage. The pioneering spirit broke out as it
had never done before, and out of it came lesson after lesson, of which
certainly none were more valuable than those furnished by Stanley’s brave

Whatever may be the future of the white race in Africa, it is certain
that, just now, no consideration of climate, distance or inaccessibility,
weighs to cool the enthusiasm of Christianity as it marches to a
conquest of heathenism in equatorial wilds. It is face to face with all
the problems above stated and may be the means of solving many of them
favorably. It deserves a better fate than any that has hitherto befallen
it. But the fate of all former outbursts and experiments should prove a
standing warning. Missionaries are only men. The cause of God, as well as
that of commerce, agriculture, science and art, may be best subserved by
using God’s natural forces and observing his immutable laws.

In a political sense, the mission of the white races in Africa has ever
been a failure, and there is little transpiring at this hour, except the
small beginnings of order and independence in the Congo Free State, but
what is ominous of confusion and defeat. Greed for African possessions,
jealousy of one another’s territorial thefts, threatened wars on account
of undefined boundaries, petty usurpations of authority, these render
unseemly the scramble for African acres, and bode no good to native
Africans, whose allegiance is thereby rendered doubtful, whose fears
are constantly at fever heat, who become as ready to train their spears
and rush forth in battle array against one side or the other, as they
are when their villages and gardens are invaded by neighboring tribes
or marauding Arabs. They make colonization a farce, and reduce white
dominancy to the level of cruel interference. The cold-blooded effrontery
of this deliberate theft and partition of a continent, in a political
sense, has nothing in morals to recommend it at any rate. There is
nothing at the bottom of it except the aggrandizement of the Powers who
commit the theft. Selfishness is the motive, however it may be glossed
by the plea of a superior civilization. It regards no native rights,
consults no native good, but in obedience to a spirit of tyranny and
greed walks incontinently into the lands of a weak and helpless race, and
appropriates them in true free-booting style, hoists its flag, and says
to all comers, “Avaunt, this is mine!”

The almost hopeless entanglement of foreign Powers in Africa to-day may
be seen from a glance at the following “political sections” on the west,
or Atlantic coast:

  Spain         Claims      Morocco.
  France          “         Morocco.
  Spain           “         Opposite the Canaries.
  France          “         French Senegambia.
  Britain         “         British Senegambia.
  Portugal        “         Portuguese Senegambia.
  Britain         “         Sierra Leone.
  Liberia         “         A Republic.
  France          “         The Gold Coast.
  England         “         The Gold Coast.
  France          “         Dahomey.
  England         “         Niger.
  Germany         “         Cameroons.
  France          “         French Congo.
  Portugal        “         Portuguese Congo.
  International Commission  Portuguese The Congo Free State.
  Portugal        “         Angola.
  Portugal        “         Benguela.
  Germany         “         Angra Pequena.
  England         “         Walvisch Bay.
  Germany         “         Orange River.
  England         “         Cape of Good Hope.

Some of these claims are old, some new; some are confirmed, some vapid;
some are direct political claims, some indirect, as where a protectorate
only exists, and the real power is vested in a trading company, as in the
British West African Company, with powers to occupy and develop the Niger

Passing to the east coast of Africa we find the entanglement still worse.
There are pretty well defined ownerships beyond the Trans-vaal, then
comes Portugal’s general claim of the Zambesi, Mozambique and Delagoa
Bay, interfered with and overlapped by England and Germany. North of
this, the Sultan of Zanzibar, who claimed sovereignty indefinitely north,
south and west, has been cramped into a few island spaces along the
coast, and graciously permitted to retain the Island of Zanzibar, because
no person can live on it except Arabs and natives. Germany extends a
protectorate and the country back of Zanzibar, and inland indefinitely,
though England is by her side with a similar claim, and taking care that
such protectorate shall be as nominal as possible and shall not interfere
with her claims upon the lake sections. Italy claims all between the
German possessions and Abyssinia and has even invaded that State. These
claims are made under the veneering of trading companies, whose acquired
rights, vague as they may be, the parent country is bound to back up.
Not one of them have well defined metes and bounds for operations. All
are confused and confusing, and liable to provoke misunderstanding and
blood-shed at any moment, and the consequent disgrace of our boasted
civilization, in the eyes of all simple minded Africans at least.

As a sample of the latest methods of land acquisition in Africa, and the
consequences, one has but to study the recent bout between England and
Portugal. The latter country claims the Delagoa Bay section, Mozambique
and the Zambesi, indefinitely inland, and this though her rule has been
limited to two or three isolated spots. On the Zambesi she established
two or three trading and missionary stations which were used for a long
time, but gradually fell into disuse. There is no dispute about her
claims to the Zambesi section, though the Zulus south of the river do not
recognize allegiance to her. The Zambesi, to a point five miles above the
mouth of the Shiré, was declared a free river by the Berlin conference,
so that there can be no dispute about that. So, there is no disposition
to interfere with her claims to Mozambique or Delagoa, except as to their
western boundary. To permit her to extend her claim to these territories
westward till they met the boundaries of the Congo Free State, would be
to give her possession of the Shiré River, Lake Shirwah and Lake Nyassa.
Now starting at the Ruo affluent of the Shiré, England claims the entire
Nyassa section, both by right of discovery——Livingstone discovered the
lake——and occupation. Its non-native people are British subjects. She
may not have taken the precaution to acquire rights of the natives by
treaties, but neither has Portugal. Portugal never expanded, so to
speak, beyond the coast on the line of the Zambesi, never did anything
for the natives, and is charged with conniving with the slave trade. On
the contrary, the established church of Scotland has many missionaries,
teachers and agents in the Shiré Highlands. The Free Church of Scotland
has several missionaries, teachers and artisans on Lake Nyassa. The
Universities Mission has a steamer on the lake and several missionary
agents. The African Lakes Company, chartered in England, has steamers on
the Shiré river and Lake Nyassa, with twelve trading stations, manned by
twenty-five agents. British capital invested in Nyassaland will equal
$1,000,000. In his “Title Deeds to Nyassaland,” Rev. Horace Waller says:
“Dotted here and there, from the mangrove swamps of the Kongone mouth of
the Zambesi to the farthest extremity of Lake Nyassa, we pass the graves
of naval officers, of brave ladies, of a missionary bishop, of clergymen,
of foreign representatives, doctors, scientific men, engineers and
mechanics. All these were our countrymen. They lie in glorious graves.
Their careers have been foundation stones, and already the edifice rises.
British mission stations are working at high pressure on the Shiré
Highlands and upon the shores of Nyassa. Numbers of native Christians
owe their knowledge of the common faith to their efforts. Scores of
future chiefs are being instructed in schools spread over hundreds of
miles. Commerce is developing by sure and steady steps. A vigorous
company is showing to the tribes and nations that there are more valuable
commodities in their country than their sons and daughters.”

In view of all these things, and perhaps spurred to activity by them,
Portugal, following the fashion of England, organized a South African
Company with the intention of consolidating her African possessions, by
operating from the east coast, with a base at Delagoa Bay, Mozambique
and the mouth of the Zambesi. The announcement, lately made, that
Mapoonda, chief of the natives in the Shiré River District——the Shiré
River flows into the Zambesi from the north, and is the outlet of Lake
Nyassa——had accepted Portuguese sovereignty, was a distinctive victory
for the Portuguese in their contest with the British for the control of
that section of the Dark Continent. In July, 1889, Mr. H. H. Johnston,
an experienced African traveller and naturalist, and British consul
at Mozambique, took passage with several British naval officers on a
gunboat, which went up the Chinde mouth of the Zambesi and entered the
Shiré river. At a point 100 miles north of its mouth, where the Ruo
enters the Shiré, Consul Johnston on the 12th of August “performed
the significant act of hoisting the British flag at the Ruo station,
henceforth marking the limit of Portuguese authority.” This was intended
to close Portugal out of Lake Nyassa, the extreme southern point of
which is 150 miles north of Ruo. By securing Mapoonda, however, Portugal
took actual possession of the territory immediately to the south of
Lake Nyassa. The English expedition in going up the river passed Major
Serpa Pinto, the Portuguese leader, with a force of about 700 Zulus
under his command. Serpa Pinto was on his way to take possession of
Nyassaland. Consul Johnston protested, and assured him that, if he
persisted in his purpose, he would bring about a rupture between Portugal
and England. Serpa Pinto finally promised to turn back, but as soon as
Consul Johnston had moved forward the Portuguese commander resumed his
march to Lake Nyassa, and when he reached Mapoonda, which commands the
southern entrance to the lake, threw up fortifications there and began
preparations for a battle with the neighboring Makololo, in which the
latter were routed with great slaughter. This battle appears to have been
decisive, and to have led the native chiefs to transfer their nominal
allegiance from the British to the Portuguese with alarming rapidity.
By securing Mapoonda as an ally, the Portuguese cut off England’s
communications with Lake Nyassa via the Zambesi and Shiré rivers, and
precipitated the crisis which was threatened by the recent Portuguese
proclamation which assumed to annex the whole Zambesi region.

This controversy which has already ended in the defeat of Portuguese
designs, and which could have ended in no other way, because England
is the stronger and more rapacious power, brings into play all the old
arguments respecting colonial ambitions and enterprises. It will be
remembered that for nearly two hundred years after the discovery of
America, the European powers were a unit over the doctrine that first
discovery gave a title to the discoverer. But when Great Britain awoke
to the fact that this doctrine, if rigidly applied, would virtually
dispossess her of American soil, notwithstanding the additional fact
that she was proving to be the best permanent colonizer in Europe, she
originated the new doctrine that actual possession of and settlement in
a newly discovered country created a higher title than that of first
discovery. This was a safe doctrine to adopt respecting America, for even
then the English grip was now so strong as to be unshakable, and it was
equally safe as to any other British claim, for the ocean supremacy of
France, Spain and Portugal, her real rivals, was on the wane and hers was
on the increase.

So now, notwithstanding the claim of Portugal to her territory on both
the African coasts, by right of discovery, England does not hesitate to
enter the Nyassa and Shiré region, hoist her flag and claim the rights
of sovereignty, on the ground that she is the first permanent occupant.
The fact that she has tangible interests to protect——invested property,
missions etc., serves to strengthen her attitude with other European
powers. But aside from this she does not intend to let Portugal establish
a permanent possession clear across Africa from the Atlantic, at Angola
and Benguella, to the mouth of the Zambesi. Such a possession would
simply cut the continent in two, and erect a barrier on the east coast to
that union of the British African possessions which her foreign diplomacy
designs. Moreover, it is fully settled in the mind of Great Britain that
the Nile water-way and its extensions through Lakes Albert and Edward
Nyanza, Tanganyika, Nyassa, and the Shiré and Zambesi rivers, are hers,
even if force has to be applied to make them actually hers.

But it must be said on behalf of Portugal, that she is not resting her
rights on the ancient fiction of discovery alone. Her occupancy of the
Zambesi region has, of late, become quite distinct and her vested rights
have assumed impressive proportions. The management of her affairs are
in the hands of Major Alberto da Rocha Serpa Pinto, whose exertions have
greatly strengthened the Portuguese claims. His achievements in the
way of African exploration give him high rank as a traveler, explorer,
scientist and organizer. He was born in 1845 and educated for the
Portuguese military service. In 1869 he first went to Africa, where he
took part in the campaign against the rebellious chief Bonga, in the
region of the Zambesi. He acquitted himself with distinction on the field
of battle, and acquired wide repute as an explorer, by ascending the
river as far as the Victoria Falls, making many important discoveries on
the way, and crossing the African continent from one side to the other.

Upon his return to Portugal, Serpa Pinto was received personally by the
King, who was first to greet him when entering the harbor; Lisbon and
Oporto were brilliantly illuminated in his honor, and he received many
honors and marks of distinction from the sovereign and public bodies.

In November, 1877, Serpa Pinto was again sent to Africa by the
Portuguese Government and the Lisbon Geographical Society in conjunction.
He organized a force of fourteen soldiers and fifty-seven carriers, and,
starting from Benguella, he penetrated to the interior, traversing the
districts of Dombe, Guillenguez, and Caconda, reaching Bihé in March
of the following year. He was finally laid low with fever and carried
by his faithful followers to the coast. Two of his subordinates, Brito
Capello and Ivens, who have since become eminent as explorers, left the
expedition in the interior, journeying to the northward to explore the
river Quanza, while Serpa Pinto went to the eastward. On his return to
Lisbon he was received with evidences of great esteem by the King, and
was the object of popular adulation in all quarters. He described the
sources of four great rivers heretofore unknown. His discovery of the
river Coando, navigable for 600 miles and flowing into the Zambesi, alone
placed Major Pinto in the rank of the great African explorers. After
remaining in Portugal a few years, Serpa Pinto again returned to Africa,
where he has since remained. In 1884, he made another extended journey of
exploration, the results of which fully entitled him to the title of the
Portuguese Stanley.

Following his discoveries the Portuguese have built a short railroad
inland from Delagoa, and have established a system of steam navigation
on the Zambesi and Shiré rivers, and opened a large and prosperous
trading establishment. The activity recently displayed by the British in
southeast Africa has led them to push forward their advantages and seize
everything they can lay their hands on while the opportunity offers.

Commenting on this situation the London _Times_ calls it “Major Serpa
Pinto’s gross outrage on humanity and intolerable affront to England,” to
which an American paper very appropriately replies:——

“Nothing would suit the English better than to have some excuse for
wrenching away from little Portugal her possessions on the Dark
Continent. England has played the cuckoo so many times with impunity that
now it is believed a quickened public conscience will call a halt.

“The merits of this particular case will hardly exert much influence in
determining the fate of Portugal in Africa. Left to themselves, England
would dispossess Portugal in the twinkling of an eye, for if Turkey is
the sick man of Eastern Europe, Portugal is the national personification
of senility in the West. Four or five hundred years ago it was the
foremost nation of Europe in point of commercial enterprise. The ships
of Portugal were the most adventuresome of any that ploughed the ocean.
As long ago as 1419 a bold Portuguese tar, Zarco, skirted along Western
Africa, far below the Equator, and later, Vasco de Gama doubled the
Cape of Good Hope. Like Columbus, he sought the most direct route to
India, and what the Genoese missed he found. The country which England
is now impatiently eager to steal from Portugal is a part of the reward
of that enterprise which revolutionized Oriental trade, and was second
in importance to the world only to the discovery of America. It was as
if both sought a silver mine, and the one who failed to find what they
were after came upon a gold mine. Portugal may not have made very much
use of her discovery for herself and her people, but mankind has been
immeasurably benefited, and England incalculably enriched. For the latter
to now turn around and rob Portugal of her African possessions, in whole
or in part, would be poetic injustice. It would be the old fable over
again of the farmer who warmed a snake in his bosom only to be bitten by

[Illustration: AFRICAN METHODIST CONFERENCE, 1888. 1: Bishop Wm. Taylor.
2: Chas. A. Pitman. 3: Jas. H. Deputie. 4: H. B. Capeheart. 5: Jas. W.
Draper. 6: Riding Boyce. 7: A. L. Sims. 8: Gabriel W. Parker. 9: J. E.
Clarke. 10: Anthony H. Watson. 11: Edwd. Brumskine. 12: Jno. W. Early.
13: J. Wood (L. P.). 14: Josiah Artis. 15: A. S. Norton (?) L. P. 16:
Dan’l Ware. 17: C. B. McLain. 18: Jos. W. Bonner. 19: Wm. P. Kennedy, Jr.
20: Benj. K. McKeever. 21: Benj. J. Turner. 22: Frank C. Holderness. 23:
Wm. T. Hagar. 24: Jas. W. Cooper. 25: Thos. A. Sims.]

                       MISSIONARY WORK IN AFRICA.

It is not alone as a commercial, scientific and political field that
Africa attracts attention. No country presents stronger claims on the
attention of Christian philanthropists. The Arabs entered Africa as
propagandists of Islamism. The Portuguese advent was signalized by the
founding of Catholic missions. When they arrived off the mouth of the
Congo, in 1490, the native king, “seated on a chair of ivory, raised on
a platform, dressed in glossy, highly colored skins and feathers, with
a fine head-dress made of palm fibre, gave permission to the strangers
to settle in his dominions, to build a church, and to propagate the
Christian religion. The King himself and all his Chiefs were forthwith
baptised, and the fullest scope was allowed to the Roman Catholic
missionaries who accompanied the expedition to prosecute their appointed

Thus runs an old chronicle. It is valuable as showing the antiquity of
Christian interest in Africa, as well as showing the fine opportunity
then presented for introducing the gospel into benighted lands. We say
fine opportunity, because Portugal was then a power, able and willing
to second every effort of the church, and the church itself was well
equipped for missionary work. Its zeal was untiring. Its formula was
calculated to impress the African mind. The regalia of its priesthood
was captivating. Its music was pleasing and inspiring. But the sequel
proved that something was wrong. The priesthood laboured arduously,
establishing missions, baptizing the natives by the thousand, adapting
their ceremonies and processions to heathen rites and superstitions. The
process was not that of lifting pagan souls to a high Christian level,
so much as a lowering of Christian principles to a heathen level. Then
the church was too dependent on, too intimate with, the state. Even
Portuguese historians admit that physical force was frequently employed
to bring the natives more completely under the will of the priests. The
accounts given of some of the floggings which took place, both of males
and female, would be alternately shocking and ludicrous, but for the fact
that they were associated with the propagation of religion. Also, both
church and state countenanced the crime of slavery, and fattened on the
infernal traffic. The ultimate result of such a system might have been
easily foreseen. After a long career of so-called missionary success,
during which hundreds of mission stations were founded on the entire
western and on a great part of the eastern coast of Africa, and many even
far inland, the priests fell under the jealousy of the chiefs, clashed
with them respecting polygamy and various other customs, and were finally
forced back with the receding wave of European influence, when the
power of Portugal began to wane. Within one hundred years of the above
described arrival of the Portuguese missionaries off the mouth of the
Congo, no trace of the labors of Catholic missionaries could be found and
no tradition among the natives that they had ever been there. The finest
mission stations elsewhere had fallen into ruins, and only those remained
which were near ports of entry and fortified commercial points.

It may be truthfully said that missionary work in Africa lay as if dead
till the spirit of African discovery was revived in England by the
formation of the British African Association, in the latter part of
the eighteenth century. Even its first pioneers were not missionaries,
but rather explorers in a commercial and scientific sense. They were,
however, philanthropic Christian men, and the problem of evangelizing
Africa was ever present in their minds. Among them were Leyard, Major
Houghton, Mungo Park who met his death on the Upper Niger, Frederic
Horeman, Mr. Nicholls, Prof. Roentgen, Mr. James Riley, Captain Tuckey
who manned the first Congo expedition in 1816, Captain Gray and Major
Laing, Richie and Lyon, Denham and Clapperton who pierced Bornou and
visited Lake Tchad, Laing and Caillié whose glowing descriptions of
Timbuctoo were read with delight.

These were followed at a later period by Richard and John Lander who
really solved the problem of the Niger, and by Laird and Oldfield and
Coulthurst and Davidson. Now came a time, 1841, when broader sympathies
were enlisted. An expedition was organized under the direction and at
the expense of the British Government which was not merely to explore
the interior of the vast Continent, promote the interests of art and
science, but check the slave trade, introduce legitimate commerce,
advance civilization and social improvement, and thus prepare the way
for the introduction of Christianity. For this purpose, treaties were
to be formed with native princes, agriculture was to be encouraged, and
Christian missions were to be established. Two missionaries went along,
Rev. Messrs. Muller and Schon. The expedition began the ascent of the
river Niger, but was soon forced to return. Failure was written over
the enterprise, and the cause was the deadly climate, which had been
too little studied in advance. African enterprise in the north again
fell back on pioneering exploits, and we have the splendid researches
of Barth, Krapf and Rebman in 1849, and in 1857 those still more
brilliant efforts of Burton and Speke, who entered the continent from
Zanzibar, on the east, and brought to light the mystery of Victoria
Nyanza and Tanganyika. Following these came Baker, and then the immortal
Livingstone, who united the pioneer and the missionary.

Livingstone entered Africa in 1840, under the auspices of the London
Missionary Society, and founded a missionary station at Kolobeng, South
Africa, 200 miles north of the Moffat station at Kuruman. He married Rev.
Robert Moffat’s daughter, and was thus doubly fortified for missionary
work. He labored earnestly and faithfully in his field till driven by
the hostility of the Boers to provide himself another mission further
north and beyond the great Kalahari desert. After suffering untold
hardships in his trip across the desert, he discovered Lake Ngami,
decided that it would be a good base for further missionary work, and
then returned for his wife. A third time he crossed the desert, which
had been regarded as impassable, and this time with his family. It was
the year 1851. He reached the river Chobe after a hard struggle, his
animals having perished under the bites of the poisonous tsetse fly.
Here he entered the kingdom of Sebituane, the renowned warrior, whose
favor he had previously secured. But that chieftain had died, and his
successor detained Livingstone for a time. When a permit was obtained to
go where he pleased, he pushed on 130 miles to Sesheke, and thence to
the Zambesi, in the center of the continent, in the country of the famed
Macololos. But finding the country too unhealthy for a permanent mission,
he returned to Cape Town, whence he planned and carried to success a
journey back to the Zambezi, and westward, through the Macololos and
other tribes, to Loanda in Angola, quite across the continent. This was
in 1852. This journey came about because, when at Cape Town, he learned
of the total destruction of his parent mission station at Kolobeng by the
Boers. This left him without a pastoral charge, but it proved a turning
point in his life. Henceforth the field of adventure and exploration
was his, and he easily became the most noted of African travelers, till
Stanley established for himself a greater fame. What the Church lost
a whole world gained. His further travels, how he lost and buried his
faithful wife on the banks of the Shiré, his own sad death in the swamps
of Lake Bangweola, the return of his dead body to Zanzibar, borne by his
faithful servants Chuma and Susi, have all been described elsewhere in
this volume.

The recent advance of the Portuguese toward the head-waters of the
Zambesi, and their reduction of the Macololo territory to a Portuguese
possession, together with the complications with other ambitious nations
of Europe, likely to grow out of it, bring that strange Central African
people again into prominence. The region was made known, in olden times,
by the Portuguese traveler, Silva Porto, who described it as fertile, and
the people as of divided tribes. But Livingstone describes the section
as the empire of the Macololos, and gives many glowing descriptions of
the people, their rulers, products and possessions. He was well received
by them, liked their country, and left a profound impression among
them, for Major Serpa Pinto, in his visit many years afterwards, found
Livingstone’s name mentioned everywhere among the then detached and
demoralized tribes with respect.

[Illustration: CHUMA AND SUSI.]

[Illustration: KING LOBOSSI.]

According to Livingstone, the powerful Basuto tribe, south of the
Zambesi, crossed to the north side under the lead of their chief,
Chibitano, and reduced the numerous tribes who inhabited the vast
stretches of country as far as the river Cuando. Chibitano gave to
his army, formed of different elements, and to his conquered peoples,
made up of a variety of origins, the name of Cololos, hence the word
Macololos, so well known throughout Africa. This powerful warrior and
legislator held his conquered tribes as brethren in one common interest
till his death, when they began to set up independent empires. In this
disintegration the Luinas, under King Lobossi, came to the front, and
are yet the most powerful of the Macololos. Pinto says that the Macololo
empire is now composed of a mongrel crew——Calabares, Luinas, Ganguellas,
and Macalacas——all given to drunkenness and moral brutishness. They are
polygamous and deep in the slave traffic. Their country——200 miles long
and over 50 wide——is full of villages and fine plantations. The Luina
herds cover the plains of the upper Zambesi, and no finer cattle are to
be found in Africa. Lakes abound, and while they contribute to malarial
diseases, they give a rich variety of fish. The men do not take readily
to farming, but the women are wonderful milkmaids and vegetable raisers.
As a people, they are skillful iron-workers and wood-carvers, and expert
at pottery work. They cultivate tobacco for snuff, but smoke only
_bangue_. They dress fuller and better than most Central African people,
and some of their garbs are quite fantastic.

Prof. Henry Drummond, of Glasgow, in a lecture on “The Heart of Africa,”
gives a vivid description of the perils which beset missionary life in
the Zambesi regions:

As his boat swept along the beautiful lake Nyassa, he noticed in the
distance a few white objects on the shore. On closer inspection, they
were found to be wattle and daub houses, built in English style and
whitewashed. Heading his boat for the shore, he landed and began to
examine what seemed to be the home of a little English colony. The first
house he entered gave evidence of recent occupancy, everything being
in excellent order; but no human form was to be seen or human voice to
be heard. The stillness of death reigned. He entered the school-house.
The benches and desks were there, as if school had been but recently
dismissed; but neither teachers nor scholars were to be seen. In the
blacksmith shop the anvil and hammer stood ready for service, and
it seemed as if the fire had just gone out upon the hearth; but no
blacksmith could be found. Pushing his investigations a little further,
he came upon four or five graves. These little mounds told the whole
story and explained the desolation he had seen. Within them reposed the
precious dust of some of the missionaries of Livingstonia, who one by
one had fallen at their post, victims of the terrible African fever.
Livingstonia was Scotland’s answer in part to the challenge which Henry
M. Stanley gave to the Christian world to send missionaries to eastern
equatorial Africa. When that intrepid explorer, after untold hardship,
had found David Livingstone, and during months of close companionship
had felt the power of that consecrated life, he blew the trumpet with no
uncertain sound to rouse the church to her privilege and responsibility
in central Africa. But it was not till the death of the great missionary
explorer, that the land which gave him birth resolved to send a little
army of occupation to the region which he had opened to the Christian
world. On the 18th of January, 1875, at a public meeting held in the city
of Glasgow, the Free, the Reformed, and the United Presbyterian churches
of Scotland founded a mission, to be called Livingstonia, and which was
to be located in the region of Lake Nyassa, the most southern of the
three great lakes of central Africa, with a coast of eight hundred miles.
Although founded by the churches just named, it was understood that it
was to be regarded as a Free Church mission, the others co-operating with
men and means as opportunity offered or necessity required.

The choice of location was most appropriate, not only because Dr.
Livingstone had discovered that beautiful sheet of water, but because
he had requested the Free Church to plant a mission on its shores. The
first company of missionaries, which included also representatives of
the Established Church, who were to found a separate mission in the
lake region, after immense toil and severe hardship, reached the lake,
_via_ the Zambesi and Shiré rivers, October 12th, 1875. They selected
a site near Cape Maclear as their first settlement, and as soon as
possible put into operation the various parts of the mission work they
had been commissioned to prosecute——industrial, educational, medical and
evangelistic. From the first the mission met with encouraging success,
becoming not only a center of gospel light to that benighted region,
but also a city of refuge to which the wretched natives fled to escape
the inhuman cruelties of the slave traders. As the years rolled on,
however, it was found necessary to remove the main work of the mission
to a more healthful region on the lake——hence the desolation seen by
Prof. Drummond——the work at Cape Maclear being now mainly evangelistic
and carried on by native converts. The mission still lives and comprises
four stations, one of which is situated on the Stevenson Road, a road
constructed at a cost of $20,000 by an English philanthropist, and
intended to promote communication between Lakes Nyassa and Tanganyika.

After this diversion, forced upon the reader by reason of Livingstone’s
dual missionary and pioneering work, we turn again to the north of
Africa, and to historic Egypt. Comparatively little has been done in this
land by Christendom for the evangelization of its degraded population.
Wesleyan missionaries were stationed at Alexandria in the early part of
the century, but the field proved unpropitious and they were removed
to a more promising sphere of labor. Even the Church of England, now
most in favor there, has not achieved much in the way of Christianizing
the people. Perhaps the American United Presbyterians have been most
successful in this uninviting field. They have several missionaries
there, numerous lay agents, over a score of stations and schools, and
quite a following of converts and pupils. The Khedive has granted them
toleration and valuable concessions. The Church of Scotland sustains one
mission and several prosperous schools at Cairo, in Egypt.

In Nubia, the Mohammedan religion is so firmly fixed, that missionary
effort has been almost entirely discouraged.

The Abyssinians boast of their relationship to King Solomon, resulting
from the visit of the Queen of Sheba to Jerusalem. They also claim to
have received their Christianity from its fountain head in Judæa, on the
return of the Ethiopian eunuch to the Court of Queen Candace, after his
conversion to the faith of the Gospel by Philip, the Evangelist. Whatever
truth there may be in these traditions, it is a fact that the religion
of the country is a species of Christianity, combined with certain
Judaic observances, as circumcision, abstinence from meat, keeping of
Saturday as the Sabbath, and also with many Catholic forms, as reverence
for the Virgin, the calendar of saints, etc. As a missionary field the
Catholics were the first to enter Abyssinia in 1620, and they succeeded
in persuading the king to declare Catholicism to be the religion of the
State. This bold step, however, occasioned civil wars which ended in
their expulsion from the country. Jesuit missionaries from France came
later, but they were also banished.

The Church of England Missionary Society in 1829 sent out two
missionaries. Others followed, but little was accomplished. The well
known German missionary, Herr Flad, has accomplished quite a work in
recent times. The defeat and murder of the Abyssinian king was one of the
sad events of 1888. It followed successful invasions of the country and
the slaughter and enslavement of large numbers of Abyssinians in 1885 and
1886 by the Mahdists, and their defeat by King John in 1887. Herr Flad
transmitted a letter to the British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society from
Christian Abyssinians, which is a most earnest and pathetic appeal for
help from their fellow Christians and such help as will prevent their
enslavement and the entire desolation of their country. Very pertinently
these people, whose liberties and lives are in such imminent danger,
inquire of Christians in other lands, after depicting the desolation of
their own, the selling of thousands of people into slavery, and the cruel
butchery of other thousands, “Why should fanatic and brutal Moslems be
allowed to turn a Christian land like Abyssinia into a desert, and to
extirpate Christianity from Ethiopia?” They close with this earnest plea:
“For Christ’s sake make known our sad lot to our brethren and sisters in
Christian lands, who fear God and love the brethren.” While Abyssinian
Christianity may not be without spot, Abyssinians are God’s men and women.

Later missionary letters to the London Anti-Slavery Society say that
the Mahdists have made Western Abyssinia a desert. Whole flocks and
herds have been destroyed, thousands of Christians have been thrown into
slavery, thousands of others have been butchered, and hundreds of the
noblest inhabitants have been taken to Mecca as slaves in violation of

The English gunboat Osprey recently captured three cargoes of slaves off
the island of Perim, which guards the Aden entrance to the Red Sea. When
brought to the Admiralty Court at Aden they proved to be about 217 in
number, chiefly Abyssinian boys and girls from 10 to 20 years of age,
captured by the fierce Mohammedan Gallas, and run across to Mocha to be
sold to the Mohammedans. The Foreign Missionary Committee in Scotland
appeal for a special Rescued Slaves’ Fund for the support and Bible
education of these captives.

In Barca, Tripoli, Fezzan, Tunis, Algiers, and Morocco, known as the
Barbary States, owing to the exclusive character of the Moslem faith, all
missionary effort for the evangelization of the general population has
been precluded until recently. A note from Edward H. Slenny, secretary
of the North Africa Mission, says Jan. 26, 1889: “I have just returned
from visiting most of the missionaries connected within the North Africa
Mission in Morocco, Algeria and Tunis. The prospect among the Mohammedans
is encouraging and we are hoping to send out more laborers. There are
now forty-one on our staff, and two more leave us in a week. We are now
proposing to take up work among the Europeans as well as the Mohammedans,
and also establish a station in Tripoli, which is quite without the

Algeria was occupied in some measure in 1881, Morocco in 1884, Tunis in
1885 and in 1889. Mr. Michell, who has been working in Tunis, accompanied
by Mr. Harding, who left England February 1, landed in Tripoli the 27th.
Thus far they are getting on well. They find the people more bigoted
than in Tunis. Besides the work they may be able to do in the city and
neighborhood, they will be able to send some Scriptures by the caravans
leaving for the Soudan which, with the blessing of God, will spread the
light around Lake Tchad.

A correspondent of _The Christian_, (London) writing from Gibraltar,
says: “We have had very cheering news from Morocco. A wonderful work
has sprung up among the Spanish and Jewish people of Tangier. Meetings,
commenced two or three months ago, have been held in Spanish, addressed
through an interpreter by some brethren of the North African Mission, and
there has been an intense eagerness to hear the truth. The Holy Spirit
has carried home the Gospel message with conviction to many hearts,
and a few days ago the brethren informed me that seventeen Jewish and
Spanish converts were baptized, and others were waiting for baptism.
The meetings have been crowded night after night, so much so that the
friends in Tangier contemplate hiring a music-hall, at present used for
midnight revelry and sin. This revival has aroused the enmity of both
rabbi and priest, consequently bitter persecution has followed. Several
Jewish inquirers have been beaten in the synagogue, converts have been
dismissed from their employment, and the priests have offered bribes and
made threats to the Spanish converts to induce them to cease attending
the meetings, but so far the converts are holding firm.”

E. F. Baldwin is meeting with great success in Morocco. He writes from

“We have had great encouragement in the work here. For some two months
we have had nightly meetings for inquirers and young converts, attended
by from ten to twenty. Many have received Christ as their personal
Saviour and have been at once baptized. For some weeks most of my time
was occupied from morning until night talking with interested ones who
visited me, and daily there would be natives in my room much of the
time. At times conversions occurred daily. All of them are brought out
of Mohammedan darkness. They all renounce that false religion formally
at their baptism. Almost all are young men, some of good position, but
most of them from among the poor. There is not one who has not prayed and
spoken in our meetings from the day of his conversion.

“Two of the earliest converts are in the mountains traveling on foot
without purse, scrip or pay, preaching in both Arabic and Shillah. They
have been away now several weeks. Others, whose faces we have never seen,
have been converted in distant places through one from here, and write us
of many others believing through their word. We have reason to believe
the Gospel has taken root in several places in Southern Morocco within
these few weeks. Two others of our number are arranging to start at once
to preach in another direction. Mr. Martain and I are also leaving as
soon as we can get away, and will travel also as Christ commanded, on
foot and without purse or scrip.”

Later he writes from Mogador: “For upwards of a year new accessions
have been constant, and every one baptized has renounced Mohammedanism.
For a time the work was seemingly much hindered by severe persecution,
imprisonment, beating, disowning, banishment——these are all too familiar
to the converts here in Southern Morocco. But when it was impossible to
work longer here in Mogador we travelled and preached, going literally
on the methods laid down in Matthew X, which we hold with, we find,
increasing numbers of God’s children, to be of perpetual obligation.
We have found them to contain the deep and matchless wisdom of God for
missionary effort. Several others besides myself, including recently
converted natives, are so travelling. The natives knowing no other
methods, have gone gladly forth, without purse or scrip, on foot, taking
nothing, and marvellous blessing in the way of conversion has followed
the step of their simple faith. They go with no thought of pay or
salary. The Father makes their simple needs His care. My own position as
an unattached missionary, dependent only on God for temporal supplies
(which, blessed be His name, He ceaselessly supplies), enables one to
consistently instruct these native Christians in the principles and
methods of Mathew x, and encourage them to go forth upon them.

“It is to this return to these first principles of mission work I
attribute the constant flow of blessing we are having, and which is so
exceptional in Mohammedan fields. I earnestly recommend them to others
who may have the faith and are so circumstanced as to practice them. I
say this without any reflection upon the more ordinary and accepted lines
of mission endeavor. The field is vast and the need great, and by all and
every means let the Gospel be preached.

“Just now the vigilance of our persecutors and adversaries has
somewhat relaxed, and our frequent meetings (sixteen in Arabic and
eight in English per week,) are well attended and we are cheered by
more conversions. Several are just presenting themselves for baptism.
Last night one of the most intelligent and best educated Moors I have
ever met, publicly confessed Christ for the first time——both speaking
and praying (as all the native Christians do from the hour of their
conversion) in our meeting before many witnesses. He is one of the few
‘honorable’ ones who have been won. We trust he may become a veritable
Paul. He was some months since arrested and thrown into prison on the
suspicion of being a Christian, which at that time he was not. His feet,
like Joseph’s, ‘they hurt with fetters,’ the scars of which he will
never cease to carry. Poor fellow! He was then without the comfort that
comes to a child of God in affliction, and yet enduring reproach for
Christ. But God blessed his dreary sojourn in prison to his soul, and it
contributed to his conversion.

“Some from among the few resident Europeans and from among the Jews also
have turned to the Lord and confessed Him in baptism.

“Tidings from different places in the interior, where the word of life
has been carried from here, tell us of many turning from Mohammed’s cold,
hard, false faith, to the love and light the Gospel brings them. May not
all this encourage the zeal and faith of scattered workers toiling in
these hard Moslem fields?

“Some new workers, all committed to Mathew X lives, have just joined us.
There are now six of us here, all men of course, with our lives given up
to toil for Christ under his primitive instructions. A band is forming in
Ayrshire, Scotland, of others who will come to us soon, we trust. Others
in different places are greatly interested. We hope to have many natives
together here in the summer months for training in the Word, that they
may afterwards go forth two by two, without purse or scrip.”

Alfred S. Lamb writes as follows:

“Within four days’ journey of Britain one may land on African soil and
find a large field——almost untouched——for Christian labor among the
natives of Algeria, the Kabyles. Visiting recently among these people,
and making known to them, for the first time, the glad tidings of
salvation, I was much struck with the attention given to the message.
Doubtless the novelty of an Englishman speaking to them in their own
unwritten language, and delivering such a message as a free salvation
without works, was sufficient of itself to call forth such attention.
Seated one evening in a Kabyle house, I was greatly delighted with
the readiness to listen to the Gospel. The wonderful story of the
resurrection of Lazarus was being read, when my host announced that
supper was ready, and when I liked I could have it brought up. Having
expressed a desire to finish the narrative, the little company of
Mohammedans continued to give the utmost attention to the words read and
spoken. Supper ended, the conversation was renewed. One of our company,
an honorable Marabout or religious Mohammedan, who, because of having
made a pilgrimage to Mecca, was called Elhadj, entertained us while he
read from an Arabian tract. The man showed us, with evident pride, a book
in Arabic (I presume a portion of Scripture,) given him two years ago in
Algiers by a Christian English lady who was distributing tracts among
the people. Frequently during that evening’s conversation, my statements
were met by the words, ‘You are right,’ ‘Truly.’ That night I had two
sharing the sleeping apartment with me. Having seen me bow the knee in
prayer, one of them asked me afterward if I had been praying. Replying
that I had, he added, ‘May God answer your prayer!’”

The north of Africa, so long neglected by the missionaries, seems now to
share in the interest that has been awakened in the whole continent.


We come now to the west coast. Western Africa is divided into numerous
petty States, in all of which the most degrading superstition and
idolatry, with their usual concomitants of lawlessness and cruelty,
are the outstanding features. The entire population was no doubt pagan
at no very remote period; but in modern times the religion of Mohammed
has extensively prevailed, having been jealously propagated with fire
and sword by northern tribes of Arab descent. But there is not so much
difference between the Mohammedanism and paganism of the negroes as
many suppose. The distinction is rather nominal than real, so far as
the moral conduct of the people is concerned. All profess to believe in
the existence of God, if a confused notion of a higher power may be so
designated; but all are entirely ignorant of the character and claims of
the Divine Being, and exceedingly superstitious. The African Mussulman
repeats the prayers, and observes the feasts and ceremonies prescribed in
the Koran, but he has quite as much, if not more faith, in his charms and
amulets, or greegrees.

Paganism in West Africa is known by the name of “fetishism.” It assumes
different forms in the various tribes. It is to a large extent a system
of devil worship, in connection with which the belief in witchcraft
plays an important part. Not only are the deities themselves called
“fetishes,” but the religious performances of acts of worship, and the
offerings presented are also spoken of as “fetish,” or sacred, because
they are performed and offered in honor of those deities. In the daily
household worship, in every domestic and public emergency, in seasons of
public calamity, when preparing for and engaged in war, in the taking
of oaths, at births and deaths and funerals, and, indeed in connection
with every event in life, the “fetish” superstition holds the people in
the most slavish, degrading, and cruel bondage. When a death occurs a
solemn assembly is held in a palaver house to inquire into its cause;
and as witchcraft is the one often assigned it results in death to some
unfortunate individual suspected of the crime.

To be suspected of witchcraft is the worst thing that can overtake a
man or woman in Africa, and at every death it is the priests’ business
to make out who has been the cause of the death. On such occasions
a brother, sister, father, nay, in many cases even a mother, may be
accused of the unnatural crime of having occasioned the death of their
dearest. Against such a charge there exists no defense. Free room has
been left to the priesthood for the execution of its malicious plottings
and selfish designs, as they mostly are. It is hard to say which men
dread the most, the effects of witchcraft or being themselves accused of
practicing it. People avoid with the utmost carefulness and solicitude
every look, every word, every act, which is in the slightest measure open
to misinterpretation. If any one is seriously ill, care is taken not to
be too cheerful, lest it should appear as if one was rejoicing over the
expected decease. But, again, one does not dare to seem too solicitous,
lest it should be surmised that he is concealing his guilt under a mantle
of hypocrisy. And yet, with all these precautions, one is never secure.
If such a suspicion has once been uttered against any one, neither age,
nor rank, nor even known nobility of character defends him from the
necessity of submitting to the ordeal of poison, the issue of which is
held infallible.

The people through belief in this doctrine, are the victims of the
priests and priestesses——the “fetish” men and women——who constitute a
large class. The most incredible atrocities resulting from this belief
form one of the darkest chapters in the history of this dark land.

Some of the superstitious rites and ceremonies of the negro race partake
more of the nature of open idolatry than any of those which have yet
been mentioned. For instance, they pay homage to certain lakes, rivers
and mountains, which they regard as sacred, believing them to be the
special dwelling places of the gods. They also adore various animals
and reptiles, which they believe to be animated by the spirits of their
departed ancestors. In some places large serpents are kept and fed, in
houses set apart for the purpose, by the “fetish” priests. To these ugly
creatures sacrifices are presented and divine homage is paid by the
people at stated periods——a liberal present being always brought for the
officiating priest on all such occasions.

The ruling people of the Niger delta, at Bross, New Calabar, Bonny and
Opobo, are the Ijos. Every community of them had formerly its “totem,”
or sacred animal, in whose species the ancestral Spirit of the tribe was
supposed to dwell. So profound was this belief that the English traders
in the Oil River region——the Oil Rivers embrace the tributaries of the
Niger, and are so called in general because the commerce in palm-oil
is large upon them——were forbidden to kill the sacred lizard of Bonny,
and the more sacred python of Bross. One agent of a large trading firm
at Bross found a python in his house and inconsiderately killed it. On
learning of it, the Bross natives destroyed the firm’s factory and store,
dragged the agent to the beach and inflicted indignities on him. The
British consul considered the case, but such was the sentiment against
the sacrilegious conduct of the agent, that the consul, as a matter of
trade polity, was forced to decide that redress was impossible, in as
much as he had brought the punishment on himself.

This “totem” worship made the monster lizard at Bonny a nuisance. They
grew in number and impudence, till it was nothing unusual to see their
six feet of slimy length stretched across paths and upon doorways, and to
feel the lash of their serrated tails on your legs as you passed along.
If one were wounded or killed, there was no end of trouble, for the irate
natives were sure to carry the case to the consul on board ship, where
they secured the judgment of a fine, or else taking the law into their
own hands, they insulted, or assaulted the slayer till their anger was

In other parts of the delta, a shark became the tribe “totem,” or
a crocodile, or water-bird, but in no part was Zoölatry——animal
worship——carried to a greater extent than at Bonny and Bross, where
the lizard and python were favorites. In 1884, the Church Missionary
Society took the matter in hand, and finally succeeded in doing what
consuls and the war-ships had failed to accomplish. The society screwed
the courage of the native converts up to the sticking point and finally
proclaimed the destruction of the lizards in Bonny on one Easter Sunday
morning. Men and boys, armed with hatchets and sticks went about killing
the ugly beasts, and so complete was their work that the day ended with
their extermination. But the sickening smell which pervaded the air for
days, came near producing a pestilence. It was a hard blow to native
superstitions, but the riddance soon came to be acquiesced in. A change
equally abrupt put an end to the python worship at Bross, and so there
has been of late years, a gradual giving up of this “totem” observance
among the Niger tribes, thanks to missionary rather than commercial

Here, surely, if anywhere on the face of the earth, the Gospel, with its
enlightening, purifying, and ennobling influence, was needed. What then
has been done to carry it to these degraded people, and what have been
the results of missionary labor among them? Take a glance first at Sierra
Leone, as it was the earliest visited by the missionaries. It is situated
in the southern part of Senegambia. It has an area of 319 square miles,
and a population of over 80,000, nearly all blacks. Formerly it was one
of the chief emporiums of the slave trade. In 1797 the British African
Company purchased land from the native princes with the view of forming
a settlement for the emancipated negroes who had served in British ships
during the American Revolution, and who on the conclusion of peace were
found in London in a most miserable condition. In 1808 this land was
transferred to the British Crown, additional tracts of country being
subsequently acquired. The colony has since served as an asylum for the
wretched victims rescued from the holds of slave ships.

The history of missionary enterprise, in this land of sickness and death,
is a chequered one. Colonial chaplains were appointed at different
times, from the beginning, to minister to the government functionaries
and others; but owing to frequent deaths and absences from illness,
the office was often vacant. The first effort of a purely missionary
character for the benefit of West Africa was made by the Baptist
Missionary Society in 1795. Efforts of other societies followed in rapid
succession; but it was not until after the commencement of the present
century, when the Church and Wesleyan Missionary Societies undertook the
work of evangelization in Western Africa, that the cause took a permanent
and progressive form.

The Church Missionary Society in 1804 sent out to Sierra Leone Mr.
Renner, a German, and Mr. Hartwig, a Prussian, to instruct the people in
a knowledge of Divine things. In 1806 Messrs. Nylander, Butscher, and
Prasse——all of whom had been trained at the Berlin Missionary Seminary,
and ordained according to the rites of the Lutheran church——embarked at
Liverpool to strengthen the mission. In 1816 Wm. A. B. Johnson went out
as a schoolmaster to this colony. “He was a plain German laborer, having
but a very limited common-school education and no marked intellectual
qualifications, but he was trained in the school of Christ and was
a good man, full of faith and of the Holy Spirit. It became obvious
that he was called of God to preach the Gospel, and he was ordained in
Africa. His period of service was brief, but marvelous in interest and
power, and he raised up a native church of great value. Into the midst
of these indolent, vicious, violent savages he went. He found them devil
worshipers, and at first was very much disheartened. But though William
Johnson distrusted himself, he had faith in Christ and his Gospel. Like
Paul, he resolved to preach the simple Gospel, holding up the cross,
show them plainly what the Bible says of the guilt of sin, the need of
holiness, and the awful account of the Judgment Day. He simply preached
the Gospel and left results with God, confident that his Word would not
return to him void. For nearly a year he pursued this course. And he
observed that over that apparently hopeless community a rapid and radical
change was coming. Old and young began to show deep anxiety for their
spiritual state and yearning for newness of life. If he went for a walk
in the woods, he stumbled over little groups of awakened men and women
and children, who had sought there a place to pour out their hearts to
God in prayer; if he went abroad on moonlight evenings, he found the
hills round about the settlement echoing with the praises of those who
found salvation in Christ, and were singing hymns of deliverance. His
record of the simple experiences of these converts has preserved their
own crude, broken, but pathetically expressive story of the Lord’s
dealings with them, and the very words in which they told of the work
of grace within them. No reader could but be impressed with their deep
sense of sin, their appreciation of grace, their distrust of themselves
and their faith in God, their humble resolves, their tenderness of
conscience, their love for the unsaved about them, and their insight into
the vital truth of redemption.”

The improvement in the appearance and habits and social condition of the
people that followed was nothing short of a transformation. Their chapel
was five times enlarged to accommodate the ever increasing numbers who
attended. “Seventy years ago, if you had gone to what was afterward known
as the Regent’s Town, you would have found people, taken at different
times from the holds of slave-ships, in the extreme of poverty and
misery, destitution and degradation. They were as naked and as wild as
beasts. They represented twenty-two hostile nations or tribes, strangers
to each other’s language, and having no medium of communication, save
a little broken English. They had no conception of a pure home, they
were crowded together in the rudest and filthiest huts, and, in place
of marriage, lived in a promiscuous intercourse that was worse than
concubinage. Lazy, bestial, strangers to God, they had not only defaced
his image, but well-nigh effaced even the image of humanity, and combined
all the worst conditions of the most brutal, savage life, plundering and
destroying one another. Here it pleased God to make a test of his grace
in its uplifting and redeeming power.”

When Johnson was under the necessity of leaving for England, hundreds of
both sexes accompanied him a distance of five miles to the ship and wept
bitter tears at the thought of being separated from their best earthly
friend. “Massa, suppose no water live here, we go with you all the way,
till no feet more move.”

Similar success attended the work at other stations, so that we find
Sir Charles M’Arthy, the governor, reporting in 1821 as follows in
regard to the villages of these recaptured negroes: “They had all the
appearance and regularity of the neatest village in England, with a
church, a school, and a commodious residence for the missionaries and
teachers, though in 1817 they had not been more than thought of.” In 1842
a committee of the House of Commons thus testified to the state of the
colony. “To the invaluable exertions of the Church Missionary Society
more especially——as also, to a considerable, as in all our African
settlement, to the Wesleyan body——the highest praise is due. By their
efforts nearly one-fifth of the whole population——a most unusually high
proportion in any country——are at school; and the effects are visible in
considerable intellectual, moral and religious improvement.”

The bishopric of Sierra Leone was founded in 1851, and some idea may be
formed of the trying nature of the climate from the fact that no fewer
than three bishops died within three years of their consecration. In
1862 the Native Church having been organized on an independent basis,
undertook the support of its own pastors, churches, and schools, aided by
a small grant from the society.

In a work entitled “The English Church in Other Lands,” it is stated
that “in the first twenty years of the existence of the mission, 53
missionaries, men and women, died at their post;” but these losses seemed
to draw out new zeal, and neither then, nor at any subsequent period, has
there been much difficulty in filling up the ranks of the Sierra Leone
Mission, or of the others established on the same coast. The first three
bishops——Vidal, Weeks and Bowen——died within eight years of the creation
of the See, and yet there has been no difficulty in keeping up the

The present results are a sufficient reward for all the self-sacrificing
devotion. There is now at Sierra Leone a self-sustaining and
self-extending African church. The only white clergyman in the colony
is Bishop Ingram; the whole of the pastoral work being in the hands of
native clergymen. Many native missionaries, both clerical and lay, have
been furnished for the Niger and Yoruba missions.

An outline of the proceedings of the Wesleyan Missionary Society in this
part of the wide field may be compressed into a few sentences. Among
the negroes who were conveyed from Nova Scotia to Sierra Leone in 1791,
there were several who had become partially enlightened and otherwise
benefited by attending services of the Methodist ministers in America.
Some of these having made repeated applications to Dr. Coke for preachers
of their own denomination to be sent from England, in the year 1811 the
society responded to their request by the appointment of the Rev. G.
Warren as their first missionary to Western Africa. He was accompanied
by three English schoolmasters. They found about a hundred of the Nova
Scotia settlers who called themselves “Methodists.” These simple minded
people had built a rude chapel in which they were in the habit of meeting
together to worship God from Sabbath to Sabbath, a few of the most
intelligent among them conducting the services and instructing the rest
according to the best of their ability. They received the missionary
from England with the liveliest demonstrations of gratitude and joy;
and to them, as well as to the poor afflicted liberated Africans, who
were from time to time rescued from bondage by British cruisers and
brought to Sierra Leone, his earnest ministrations were greatly blessed.
But the missionary career of Mr. Warren was of short duration. He was
smitten with fever and finished his course about eight months after his
arrival——being the first of a large number of Wesleyan missionaries
who have fallen a sacrifice to the climate of Western Africa since the
commencement of the work. Other devoted missionaries followed who counted
not their lives dear unto them if they could only be made instrumental
in winning souls for Christ. No sooner did the intelligence arrive in
England that missionaries and their wives had fallen in the holy strife,
than others nobly volunteered their services, and went forth in the
spirit of self-sacrifice——in many instances to share the same fate. This
has been going on for three quarters of a century; and although the
mortality among the agents of the society is appalling to contemplate,
the social, moral, and spiritual results of the mission are grand
beyond description. Congregations have been gathered, places of worship
erected, native churches organized, and Christian schools established,
not only in Free Town, but in most of the villages and towns in the
colony. High schools have, moreover, been established for the training
of native teachers and preachers, and to give a superior education to
both males and females. The advancement of the people, most of whom have
been rescued from slavery, in religious knowledge, general intelligence,
moral conduct, and, indeed, in everything which goes to constitute
genuine Christian civilization, is literally astonishing. In addition to
the Church and Wesleyan Missionary Societies, who took the lead in the
work of religious instruction in Sierra Leone, other agencies have been
advantageously employed. The census of 1881 showed 39,000 evangelical
Christians, about equally divided between the Wesleyans and the Church of
England. Some reports give the nominal Christian population as high as

In the Gambia district the inhabitants on both sides of the river are
chiefly Mandingoes and Jalloffs, most of whom are Mohammedans, with a few
pagans here and there. A large number of “liberated Africans,” as they
are technically called, have, however, been brought to the Gambia from
time to time, and located on St. Mary’s and McCarthy’s islands and in
the neighboring districts, as thousands before had been taken to Sierra
Leone. These are poor negro slaves of different nations and tribes who
have been rescued from bondage, and landed from slave ships taken by
British cruisers while in the act of pursuing their unlawful trade.

[Illustration: AN AFRICAN CHIEF.]

No provision had been made for the moral and religious instruction of the
colonists (British,) or the native tribes of this part of Africa, when
the Wesleyan Missionary Society commenced its labors in 1821. The first
missionary sent out was the Rev. John Morgan. He was soon afterwards
joined by the Rev. John Baker from Sierra Leone, when these two devoted
servants of God began to look about for the most eligible site for a
mission station. Their object being chiefly to benefit the surrounding
native tribes, they were anxious if possible to establish themselves on
the mainland. Accordingly they went to visit the chief of Combo, on
the southern bank of the Gambia. Having offered their presents, they
were graciously received by his sable majesty, who signified his consent
for the strangers to settle in any part of the country which they might
select as most suitable for their object. They fixed upon a place called
Mandanaree, about eight miles from St. Mary’s. Although considerably
elevated it was far from healthy; and when the rainy season set in both
were prostrated with fever, and were obliged to move to St. Mary’s
where they could have medical aid. Before the end of the year, however,
Mr. Baker proceeded to the West Indies by direction of the Missionary
Committee, his health having become so impaired by his long residence in
West Africa, as to render a change absolutely necessary.

Mr. Morgan had recovered from his attack of fever and was pursuing his
work alone, when he had the pleasure of receiving as his colleague
the Rev. Wm. Bell, who had been sent from England by the committee to
reinforce the mission. This devoted young missionary appeared well
adapted for the enterprise upon which he had entered; but he was soon
called away to the “better country.” He died of fever at St. Mary’s
forty-six days after his arrival. For a time his place was taken by the
Rev. Geo. Lane, from Sierra Leone, but his health also failing he was
obliged to return, and he shortly afterwards finished his course. On the
14th of April, 1824, Mr. Morgan was relieved by the arrival from England
of the Rev. Robert and Mrs. Hawkins, who entered upon their work at once.

By this time it had become evident that the proper place for the
principal station was St. Mary’s island, and arrangements were forthwith
made for the erection of a mission-house and place of worship in
Bathurst, the principal town. A number of native converts were soon after
united in church fellowship as the result of the faithful preaching of
the Gospel; schools were organized for boys and girls, and the machinery
of a promising mission station was fairly put in motion. Mr. and Mrs.
Hawkins suffered much from sickness during their period of service,
but they labored well and successfully, and were spared to return home
in 1827, the Rev. Samuel and Mrs. Dawson being appointed to take their
place. Mrs. Dawson was smitten with fever and died at Sierra Leone, on
her way to the Gambia, and her sorrowful and bereaved husband proceeded
to his station alone. On the 18th of November, 1828, Rev. Richard
and Mrs. Marshall arrived at the Gambia from England to relieve Mr.
Dawson; and the school being once more favored with the supervision of
a Christian lady, and the station with an energetic missionary, the
work prospered in a very pleasing manner. Mr. Marshall had labored with
acceptance and success for nearly two years, when he fell a sacrifice to
the climate, and finished his course with joy at Bathurst on the 19th
of August, 1830. Two days after the funeral of her lamented husband,
Mrs. Marshall embarked with her infant son for England. They arrived
at Bristol on the first of October; and worn out with mental and
bodily suffering, the lonely widow sank into the arms of death about
forty-eight hours after she landed on the shores of her native country.
Gambia Station was thus left without a missionary or teacher, but six
months later, on the 10th of March, Rev. W. Moister and wife arrived at
St. Mary’s and set to work at once to recommence the mission schools
and public services. Their labors were crowned with success; and native
preachers having been trained to take a part in the work, they felt that
the time had come when some effort should be made to carry the Gospel
to the regions beyond. With this object in view Mr. Moister made three
successive journeys into the interior; and with much toil and exposure
succeeded in establishing a new station at McCarthy’s Island, nearly 300
miles up the Gambia,——a station which from that day to this, a period
of over half a century, has been a centre of light and influence to all
around, and the spiritual birthplace of many souls. Mr. Moister was
relieved in 1833 by the arrival from England of a noble band of laborers.
The Rev. Wm. and Mrs. Fox took charge of St. Mary’s and Rev. Thomas and
Mrs. Dove were appointed to take charge of the new station at McCarthy’s
Island. They labored long and successfully in this trying portion of the
mission field, and some of them fell a sacrifice to the deadly climate.
They were succeeded by others in subsequent years, many of whom shared
the same fate; but whilst God buried His workmen, He carried on His work.
A rich harvest has been already reaped, and the work is still going on. A
commodious new chapel and schoolrooms have been built at Bathurst, and a
high school established for the training of native teachers and others;
whilst large congregations, attentive and devout, meet together for

“The Gold Coast” is the significant name given to a maritime country
of Guinea, in Western Africa, in consequence of the quantity of gold
dust brought down from the interior by the natives for barter with
the European merchants. The Wesleyan Missionary Society commenced its
labors on the “Gold Coast” in 1834. Their first station was at Cape
Coast Town, and though the missionaries died in rapid succession, the
station was never without a missionary for any considerable time. As
the work advanced native laborers were raised up; and in succeeding
years stations were established, places of worship built, congregations
gathered, and Christian churches and schools organized, not only in Cape
Coast Town, but also at Elmina, Commenda, Dix Cove, Appolonia, Anamabu,
Domonasi, Accra, Winnibab, and other places along the coast and in the
far distant interior. In 18