Henry M. Stanley.

How I Found Livingstone; travels, adventures, and discoveres in Central Africa, including an account of four months' residence with Dr. Livingstone, by Henry M. Stanley online

. (page 30 of 38)
Online LibraryHenry M. StanleyHow I Found Livingstone; travels, adventures, and discoveres in Central Africa, including an account of four months' residence with Dr. Livingstone, by Henry M. Stanley → online text (page 30 of 38)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

from white men. This seemed to produce great effect, for after a little
gentle persuasion the drunken youth, and his no less inebriate sire,
were induced to sit down to talk quietly. In their conversation with us,
they frequently referred to Mombo, the son of Kisesa, Sultan of Muzimu,
who was brutally murdered. "Yes, brutally murdered!" they exclaimed
several times, in their own tongue; illustrating, by a faithful
pantomime, how the unfortunate youth had died.

Livingstone continued talking with them in a mild, paternal way, and
their loud protestations against Arab cruelty were about to subside,
when the old Sultan suddenly rose up and began to pace about in an
excited manner, and in one of his perambulations deliberately slashed
his leg with the sharp blade of his spear, and then exclaimed that the
Wangwana had wounded him!

At this cry one half of the mob hastily took to flight, but one old
woman, who carried a strong staff with a carved lizard's body on its
top, commenced to abuse the chief with all the power of her voluble
tongue, charging him with a desire to have them all killed, and other
women joined in with her in advising him to be quiet, and accept the
present we were willing to give.

But it is evident that there was little needed to cause all men present
in that little hollow to begin a most sanguinary strife. The gentle,
patient bearing of the Doctor had more effect than anything else in
making all forbear bloodshed, while there was left the least chance of
an amicable settlement, and in the end it prevailed. The Sultan and his
son were both sent on their way rejoicing.

While the Doctor conversed with them, and endeavoured to calm their
fierce passions, I had the tent struck, and the canoes launched, and
the baggage stowed, and when the negotiations had concluded amicably,
I begged the Doctor to jump into the boat, as this apparent peace was
simply a lull before a storm; besides, said I, there are two or three
cowardly creatures in the boat, who, in case of another disturbance,
would not scruple to leave both of us here.

From Cape Luvumba, about 4.30 P.M. we commenced pulling across; at 8
P.M. we were abreast of Cape Panza, the northern extremity of the
island of Muzimu; at 6 A.M. we were southward of Bikari, and pulling for
Mukungu, in Urundi, at which place we arrived at 10 A.M., having been
seventeen hours and a half in crossing the lake, which, computing at two
miles an hour, may be said to be thirty-five miles direct breadth, and a
little more than forty-three miles from Cape Luvumba.

On the 11th of December, after seven hours' pulling, we arrived at
picturesque Zassi again; on the 12th, at the pretty cove of Niasanga;
and at 11 A.M. we had rounded past Bangwe, and Ujiji was before us.

We entered the port very quietly, without the usual firing of guns, as
we were short of powder and ball. As we landed, our soldiers and the
Arab magnates came to the water's edge to greet us.

Mabruki had a rich budget to relate to us, of what had occurred during
our absence. This faithful man, left behind in charge of Livingstone's
house, had done most excellently. Kalulu had scalded himself, and had
a frightful raw sore on his chest in consequence. Mabruki had locked up
Marora in chains for wounding one of the asses. Bilali, the stuttering
coward, a bully of women, had caused a tumult in the market-place, and
had been sharply belaboured with the stick by Mabruki. And, above
all most welcome, was a letter I received from the American Consul at
Zanzibar, dated June 11th, containing telegrams from Paris as late as
April 22nd of the same year! Poor Livingstone exclaimed, "And I have
none. What a pleasant thing it is to have a real and good friend!"

Our voyage on the Tanganika had lasted twenty-eight days, during which
time we had traversed over 300 miles of water.


We felt quite at home when we sat down on our black bear-skin, gay
Persian carpet and clean new mats, to rest with our backs to the wall,
sipping our tea with the air of comfortable men, and chat over the
incidents of the "picnic," as Livingstone persisted in calling our
journey to the Rusizi. It seemed as if old times, which we loved to
recall, had come back again, though our house was humble enough in its
aspect, and our servants were only naked barbarians; but it was near
this house that I had met him - Livingstone - after that eventful march
from Unyanyembe; it was on this same veranda that I listened to that
wonderful story of his about those far, enchanting regions west of the
Lake Tanganika; it was in this same spot that I first became acquainted
with him; and ever since my admiration has been growing for him, and I
feel elated when he informs me that he must go to Unyanyembe under my
escort, and at my expense. The old mud walls and the bare rafters, and
the ancient thatched roof, and this queer-looking old veranda, will have
an historical interest for me while I live, and so, while I can, I have
taken pains and immortalized the humble old building by a sketch.

I have just said that my admiration for Livingstone has been growing.
This is true. The man that I was about to interview so calmly and
complacently, as I would interview any prominent man with the view
of specially delineating his nature, or detailing his opinions, has
conquered me. I had intended to interview him, report in detail what he
said, picture his life and his figure, then bow him my "au revoir,"
and march back. That he was specially disagreeable and brusque in his
manner, which would make me quarrel with him immediately, was firmly
fixed in my mind.

But Livingstone - true, noble Christian, generous-hearted, frank
man - acted like a hero, invited me to his house, said he was glad to see
me, and got well on purpose to prove the truth of his statement, "You
have brought new life unto me;" and when I fell sick with the remittent
fever, hovering between life and death, he attended me like a father,
and we have now been together for more than a month.

Can you wonder, then, that I like this man, whose face is the reflex of
his nature, whose heart is essentially all goodness, whose aims are so
high, that I break out impetuously sometimes: "But your family, Doctor,
they would like to see you, oh! so much. Let me tempt you to come home
with me. I promise to carry you every foot of the way to the coast.
You shall have the finest donkey to ride that is in Unyanyembe. Your
wants - you have but to hint them, and they shall be satisfied. Let the
sources of the Nile go - do you come home and rest; then, after a year's
rest, and restored health, you can return and finish what you have to

But ever the answer was, "No, I should like to see my family very much
indeed. My children's letters affect me intensely; but I must not go
home; I must finish my task. It is only the want of supplies that has
detained me. I should have finished the discovery of the Nile by this,
by tracing it to its connection with either Baker's Lake, or Petherick's
branch of the Nile. If I had only gone one month further, I could have
said, 'the work is done."'

Some of these men who had turned the Doctor back from his interesting
discoveries were yet in Ujiji, and had the Government Enfield rifles in
their hands, which they intended to retain until their wages had been
paid to them; but as they had received $60 advance each at Zanzibar from
the English Consul, with the understanding entered into by contract that
they should follow their master wherever he required them to go; and as
they had not only not gone where they were required to proceed with him,
but had baffled and thwarted him, it was preposterous that a few men
should triumph over the Doctor, by keeping the arms given to him by the
Bombay Government. I had listened to the Arab sheikhs, friends of the
Doctor, advising them in mild tones to give them up; I had witnessed
the mutineer's stubbornness; and it was then, on the burzani of Sayd bin
Majid's house, that I took advantage to open my mind on the subject, not
only for the benefit of the stubborn slaves, but also for the benefit
of the Arabs; and to tell them that it was well that I had found
Livingstone alive, for if they had but injured a hair of his head, I
should have gone back to the coast, to return with a party which would
enable me to avenge him. I had been waiting to see Livingstone's guns
returned to him every day, hoping that I should not have to use force;
but when a month or more had elapsed, and still the arms had not been
returned, I applied for permission to take them, which was granted.
Susi, the gallant servant of Dr. Livingstone, was immediately despatched
with about a dozen armed men to recover them, and in a few minutes we
had possession of them without further trouble.

The Doctor had resolved to accompany me to Unyanyembe, in order to meet
his stores, which had been forwarded from Zanzibar, November 1st, 1870.
As I had charge of the escort, it was my duty to study well the several
routes to Unyanyembe from Ujiji. I was sufficiently aware of the
difficulties and the responsibilities attached to me while escorting
such a man. Besides, my own personal feelings were involved in the case.
If Livingstone came to any harm through any indiscretion of mine
while he was with me, it would immediately be said, "Ah! had he not
accompanied Stanley, he would have been alive now."

I took out my chart - the one I had made myself - in which I had perfect
faith, and I sketched out a route which would enable us to reach
Unyanyembe without paying a single cloth as tribute, and without
encountering any worse thing than a jungle, by which we could avoid all
the Wavinza and the plundering Wahha. This peaceable, secure route
led by water, south, along the coast of Ukaranga and Ukawendi, to Cape
Tongwe. Arriving at Cape Tongwe, I should be opposite the village of
Itaga, Sultan Imrera, in the district of Rusawa of Ukawendi; after which
we should strike my old road, which I had traversed from Unyanyembe,
when bound for Ujiji. I explained it to the Doctor, and he instantly
recognised its feasibility and security; and if I struck Imrera, as I
proposed to do, it would demonstrate whether my chart was correct or

We arrived at Ujiji from our tour of discovery, north of the Tanganika,
December 13th; and from this date the Doctor commenced writing his
letters to his numerous friends, and to copy into his mammoth Letts's
Diary, from his field books, the valuable information he had acquired
during his years of travel south and west of the Tanganika. I sketched
him while sitting in his shirt-sleeves in the veranda, with his Letts's
Diary on his knee; and the likeness on the frontispiece is an admirable
portrait of him, because the artist who has assisted me, has with an
intuitive eye, seen the defects in my own sketch; and by this I am
enabled to restore him to the reader's view exactly as I saw him - as he
pondered on what he had witnessed during his long marches.

Soon after my arrival at Ujiji, he had rushed to his paper, and indited
a letter to James Gordon Bennett, Esq., wherein he recorded his thanks;
and after he had finished it, I asked him to add the word "Junior" to
it, as it was young Mr. Bennett to whom he was indebted. I thought the
letter admirable, and requested the Doctor not to add another word to
it. The feelings of his heart had found expression in the grateful words
he had written; and if I judged Mr. Bennett rightly, I knew he would be
satisfied with it. For it was not the geographical news he cared so much
about, as the grand fact of Livingstone's being alive or dead.

In this latter part of December he was writing letters to his children,
to Sir Roderick Murchison, and to Lord Granville. He had intended to
have written to the Earl of Clarendon, but it was my sad task to inform
him of the death of that distinguished nobleman.

In the meantime I was preparing the Expedition for its return march to
Unyanyembe, apportioning the bales and luggage, the Doctor's large tin
boxes, and my own among my own men; for I had resolved upon permitting
the Doctor's men to march as passengers, because they had so nobly
performed their duty to their master.

Sayd bin Majid had left, December 12, for Mirambo's country, to give the
black Bonaparte battle for the murder of his son Soud in the forests
of Wilyankuru; and he had taken with him 300 stout fellows, armed with
guns, from Ujiji. The stout-hearted old chief was burning with rage
and resentment, and a fine warlike figure he made with his 7-foot gun.
Before we had departed for the Rusizi, I had wished him bon voyage,
and expressed a hope that he would rid the Central African world of the
tyrant Mirambo.

On the 20th of December the rainy season was ushered in with heavy rain,
thunder, lightning, and hail; the thermometer falling to 66 degrees
Fahrenheit. The evening of this day I was attacked with urticaria,
or "nettle rash," for the third time since arriving in Africa, and I
suffered a woeful sickness; and it was the forerunner of an attack of
remittent fever, which lasted four days. This is the malignant type,
which has proved fatal to so many African travellers on the Zambezi, the
White Nile, the Congo, and the Niger. The head throbs, the pulses bound,
the heart struggles painfully, while the sufferer's thoughts are in a
strange world, such only as a sick man's fancy can create. This was the
fourth attack of fever since the day I met Livingstone. The excitement
of the march, and the high hope which my mind constantly nourished,
had kept my body almost invincible against an attack of fever while
advancing towards Ujiji; but two weeks after the great event had
transpired my energies were relaxed, my mind was perfectly tranquil, and
I became a victim.

Christmas came, and the Doctor and I had resolved upon the blessed and
time-honoured day being kept as we keep it in Anglo-Saxon lands, with a
feast such as Ujiji could furnish us. The fever had quite gone from me
the night before, and on Christmas morning, though exceedingly weak, I
was up and dressed, and lecturing Ferajji, the cook, upon the importance
of this day to white men, and endeavouring to instil into the mind of
the sleek and pampered animal some cunning secrets of the culinary
art. Fat broad-tailed sheep, goats, zogga and pombe, eggs, fresh milk,
plantains, singwe, fine cornflour, fish, onions, sweet potatoes, &c.,
&c., were procured in the Ujiji market, and from good old Moeni Kheri.
But, alas! for my weakness. Ferajji spoiled the roast, and our custard
was burned - the dinner was a failure. That the fat-brained rascal
escaped a thrashing was due only to my inability to lift my hands for
punishment; but my looks were dreadful and alarming, and capable of
annihilating any one except Ferajji. The stupid, hard-headed cook only
chuckled, and I believe he had the subsequent gratification of eating
the pies, custards, and roast that his carelessness had spoiled for
European palates.

Sayd bin Majid, previous to his departure, had left orders that we
should be permitted to use his canoe for our homeward trip, and Moeni
Kheri kindly lent his huge vessel for the same purpose. The Expedition,
now augmented by the Doctor and his five servants, and their luggage,
necessitated the employment of another canoe. We had our flocks of
milch-goats and provision of fat sheep for the jungle of Ukawendi, the
transit of which I was about to attempt. Good Halimah, Livingstone's
cook, had made ready a sackful of fine flour, such as she only could
prepare in her fond devotion for her master. Hamoydah, her husband, also
had freely given his assistance and attention to this important article
of food. I purchased a donkey for the Doctor, the only one available in
Ujiji, lest the Doctor might happen to suffer on the long march from his
ancient enemy. In short, we were luxuriously furnished with food, sheep,
goats, cheese, cloth, donkeys, and canoes, sufficient to convey us a
long distance; we needed nothing more.

The 27th of December has arrived; it is the day of our departure from
Ujiji. I was probably about to give an eternal farewell to the port
whose name will for ever be sacred in my memory. The canoes - great
lumbering hollow trees - are laden with good things; the rowers are
in their places; the flag of England is hoisted at the stern of the
Doctor's canoe; the flag of America waves and rustles joyously above
mine; and I cannot look at them without feeling a certain pride that the
two Anglo-Saxon nations are represented this day on this great inland
sea, in the face of wild nature and barbarism.

We are escorted to our boats by the great Arab merchants, by the
admiring children of Unyamwezi, by the freemen of Zanzibar, by wondering
Waguhha and Wajiji, by fierce Warundi, who are on this day quiet, even
sorrowful, that the white men are going-"Whither?" they all ask.

At 8 A.M. we start, freely distributing our farewells as the Arabs and
quidnuncs wave their hands. On the part of one or two of them there was
an attempt to say something sentimental and affecting, especially by the
convicted sinner Mohammed bin Sali; but though outwardly I manifested no
disapprobation of his words, or of the emphatic way in which he shook
my hand, I was not sorry to see the last of him, after his treachery to
Livingstone in 1869. I was earnestly requested to convey to Unyanyembe
"Mengi salaams" to everybody, but had I done so, as he evidently desired
me to do, I would not have been surprised at being regarded by all as
hopelessly imbecile.

We pushed off from the clayey bank at the foot of the market-place,
while the land party, unencumbered with luggage, under the leadership of
gigantic Asmani and Bombay, commenced their journey southward along the
shores of the lake. We had arranged to meet them at the mouth of every
river to transport them across from bank to bank.

The Doctor being in Sayd bin Majid's boat, which was a third or so
shorter than the one under my command, took the lead, with the British
flag, held aloft by a bamboo, streaming behind like a crimson meteor.
My boat-manned by Wajiji sailors, whom we had engaged to take the canoes
back from Tongwe Cape to Ujiji Bunder - came astern, and had a much
taller flagstaff, on which was hoisted the ever-beautiful Stars and
Stripes. Its extreme height drew from the Doctor - whose patriotism and
loyalty had been excited - the remark that he would cut down the tallest
palmyra for his flagstaff, as it was not fitting that the British flag
should be so much lower than that of the United States.

Our soldiers were not a whit behind us in lightheartedness at the
thought of going to Unyanyembe. They struck up the exhilarating song of
the Zanzibar boatmen, with the ecstatic chorus -

Kinan de re re Kitunga,

rowing away like madmen, until they were compelled to rest from sheer
exhaustion, while the perspiration exuded from the pores of their bodies
in streams. When refreshed, they bent back to their oars, raising the
song of the Mrima -

O mama, re de mi Ky,

which soon impelled them to an extravagant effort again, It was by
this series of ferocious spurts, racing, shouting, singing, perspiring,
laughing, groaning, and puffing, that our people vented their joyous
feelings, as the thought filled their minds that we were homeward bound,
and that by the route I had adopted between us and Unyanyembe there was
not the least danger.

We have given the Waha, the slip! ha, ha!
The Wavinza will trouble us no more! ho! ho!
Mionvu can get no more cloth from us! by,by!
And Kiala will see us no more - -never more! he, he!

they shouted with wild bursts of laughter, seconded by tremendous and
rapid strokes with their oars, which caused the stiff old canoes to
quiver from stem to stern.

Our party ashore seemed to partake of our excitement, and joined in the
wild refrain of the mad African song. We watched them urging their steps
forward to keep pace with us, as we rounded the capes and points, and
rowed across the bays whose margins were sedge, and rush, and reed; the
tiny and agile Kalulu, little Bilali, and Majwara were seen racing the
herds of goats, sheep, and donkeys which belonged to the caravan, and
the animals even seemed to share the general joy.

Nature, also - proud, wild nature-0-with the lofty azure dome upheaved
into infinity - with her breadth and depth of vivid greenness and
enormous vastness on our left - with her immense sheet of bright,
glancing water - with her awful and intense serenity - she partook of and
added to our joy.

About 10 A.M. we arrived at Kirindo's, an old chief, noted for his
singular kindness to Dr. Livingstone, while he bore animosity to the
Arabs. To the Arabs this was unaccountable - to the Doctor it was plain:
he had but spoken kind and sincere words, while all the Arabs spoke to
him as if he were not even a man, least of all a chief.

Kirindo's place is at the mouth of the Liuche, which is very wide; the
river oozes out through a forest of eschinomenae (pith tree). This was
a rendezvous agreed upon between shore and lake parties, that the canoes
might all cross to the other side, distant a mile and a half. The mouth
of the Liuche forms the Bay of Ukaranga, so named because on the other
side, whither we were about to cross our party, was situated the village
of Ukaranga, a few hundred yards from the lake. All the baggage was
taken out of the largest canoe, and stowed snugly in the smaller one,
and a few select oarsmen having taken seats, pushed off with the Doctor
on board, who was to superintend pitching the encampment at Ukaranga;
while I remained behind to bind the fractious and ill-natured donkeys,
and stow them away in the bottom of the large canoe, that no danger
of upsetting might be incurred, and a consequent gobbling-up by hungry
crocodiles, which were all about us waiting their opportunity. The flock
of goats were then embarked, and as many of our people as could be got
in. About thirty still remained behind with myself, for whom my canoe
was to return.

We all arrived safe at Ukaranga, though we got dangerously near a herd
of hippopotami. The crossing of the wide mouth (the Liuche being then in
flood) was effected in about four hours.

The next day, in the same order as on our departure from Ujiji, we
pursued our way south, the lake party keeping as closely as possible to
the shore, yet, when feasible, wind and weather permitting, we struck
off boldly across the numerous small bays which indent the shores of
the Tanganika. The shores were beautifully green, the effect of the
late rains; the waters of the lake were a faithful reflex of the blue
firmament above. The hippopotami were plentiful. Those noticed on this
day were coloured with reddish rings round the base of their ears and on
the neck. One monster, coming up rather late, was surprised by the canoe
making full for him, and in great fright took a tremendous dive which
showed the whole length of his body. Half way between the mouth of
the Malagarazi and that of the Liuche we saw a camp on shore - that of
Mohammed bin Gharib, a Msawahili, who figured often in Livingstone's
verbal narrative to me of his adventures and travels as one of the
kindest and best of the Moslems in Central Africa. He appeared to me
a kindly disposed man, with a face seldom seen, having the stamp of an
unusual characteristic on it - that of sincerity.

The vegetation of the shores as we proceeded was truly tropical, each
curve revealed new beauties. With the soft chalky stone, of which most
of the cliffs and bluffs are made, seen as we neared the mouth of the
Malagarazi, the surf has played strange freaks.

We arrived at the mouth of the Malagarazi about P.M., having rowed
eighteen miles from Ukaranga. The shore party arrived, very much
fatigued, about 5 P.M.

The next day was employed in crossing the caravan across the broad mouth
of the Malagarazi to our camp, a couple of miles north of the river.
This is a river which a civilised community would find of immense
advantage for shortening the distance between the Tanganika and the
coast. Nearly one hundred miles might be performed by this river, which
is deep enough at all seasons to allow navigation as far as Kiala,
in Uvinza, whence a straight road might be easily made to
Unyanyembe. Missionaries also might reap the same benefit from it for
conversion-tours to Uvinza, Uhha, and Ugala. Pursuing our way on the
30th, and rounding the picturesque capes of Kagongo, Mviga and Kivoe, we
came, after about three hours' rowing, in sight of villages at the

Online LibraryHenry M. StanleyHow I Found Livingstone; travels, adventures, and discoveres in Central Africa, including an account of four months' residence with Dr. Livingstone, by Henry M. Stanley → online text (page 30 of 38)