Moffatt Livingstone, and taking that of Rupert Vincent that his tutor,
who seems to have been ignorant of his duties to the youth, might not
find him. From one of the battles before Richmond, he was conveyed to a
North Carolina hospital, where he died from his wounds.
On the 7th of February we arrived at the Gombe, and camped near one of
its largest lakes. This lake is probably several miles in length, and
swarms with hippopotami and crocodiles.
From this camp I despatched Ferajji, the cook, and Chowpereh to
Unyanyembe, to bring the letters and medicines that were sent to me from
Zanzibar, and meet us at Ugunda, while the next day we moved to our
old quarters on the Gombe, where we were first introduced to the real
hunter's paradise in Central Africa. The rain had scattered the greater
number of the herds, but there was plenty of game in the vicinity. Soon
after breakfast I took Khamisi and Kalulu with me for a hunt. After a
long walk we arrived near a thin jungle, where I discovered the tracks
of several animals - boar, antelope, elephant, rhinoceros, hippopotamus,
and an unusual number of imprints of the lion's paw. Suddenly I heard
Khamisi say, "Master, master! here is a 'simba!' (lion);" and he came
up to me trembling with excitement and fear - for the young fellow was
an arrant coward - to point out the head of a beast, which could be seen
just above the tall grass, looking steadily towards us. It immediately
afterwards bounded from side to side, but the grass was so high that it
was impossible to tell exactly what it was. Taking advantage of a tree
in my front, I crept quietly onwards, intending to rest the heavy rifle
against it, as I was so weak from the effects of several fevers that I
felt myself utterly incapable of supporting my rifle for a steady aim.
But my surprise was great when I cautiously laid it against the tree,
and then directed its muzzle to the spot where I had seen him stand.
Looking further away - to where the grass was thin and scant - I saw the
animal bound along at a great rate, and that it was a lion: the noble
monarch of the forest was in full flight! From that moment I ceased to
regard him as the "mightiest among the brutes;" or his roar as anything
more fearful in broad daylight than a sucking dove's.
The next day was also a halt, and unable to contain my longing for the
chase, where there used to be such a concourse of game of all kinds,
soon after morning coffee, and after despatching a couple of men with
presents to my friend Ma-manyara, of ammonia-bottle memory, I sauntered
out once more for the park. Not five hundred yards from the camp, myself
and men were suddenly halted by hearing in our immediate vicinity,
probably within fifty yards or so, a chorus of roars, issuing from a
triplet of lions. Instinctively my fingers raised the two hammers, as
I expected a general onset on me; for though one lion might fly, it
was hardly credible that three should. While looking keenly about I
detected, within easy rifle-shot, a fine hartebeest, trembling and
cowering behind a tree, as if it expected the fangs of the lion in its
neck. Though it had its back turned to me, I thought a bullet might
plough its way to a vital part, and without a moment's hesitation I
aimed and fired. The animal gave a tremendous jump, as if it intended
to take a flying leap through the tree; but recovering itself it dashed
through the underbrush in a different direction from that in which I
supposed the lions to be, and I never saw it again, though I knew I
had struck it from the bloody trail it left; neither did I see nor hear
anything more of the lions. I searched far and wide over the park-land
for prey of some kind, but was compelled to return unsuccessful to camp.
Disgusted with my failure, we started a little after noon for Manyara,
at which place we were hospitably greeted by my friend, who had sent men
to tell me that his white brother must not halt in the woods but must
come to his village. We received a present of honey and food from
the chief, which was most welcome to us in our condition. Here was an
instance of that friendly disposition among Central African chiefs when
they have not been spoiled by the Arabs, which Dr. Livingstone found
among the Babisa and Ba-ulungu, and in Manyuema. I received the same
friendly recognition from all the chiefs, from Imrera, in Ukawendi, to
Unyanyembe, as I did from Mamanyara.
On the 14th we arrived at Ugunda, and soon after we had established
ourselves comfortably in a hut which the chief lent us for our use, in
came Ferajji and Chowpereh, bringing with them Sarmean and Uledi
Manwa Sera, who, it will be recollected, were the two soldiers sent
to Zanzibar with letters and who should Sarmean have in charge but the
deserter Hamdallah, who decamped at Manyara, as we were going to Ujiji.
This fellow, it seems, had halted at Kigandu, and had informed the chief
and the doctor of the village that he had been sent by the white man to
take back the cloth left there for the cure of Mabruk Saleem; and the
simple chief had commanded it to be given up to him upon his mere word,
in consequence of which the sick man had died.
Upon Sarmean's arrival in Unyanyembe from Zanzibar, about fifty days
after the Expedition had departed for Ujiji the news he received was
that the white man (Shaw) was dead; and that a man called Hamdallah,
who had engaged himself as one of my guides, but who had shortly after
returned, was at Unyanyembe. He had left him unmolested until the
appearance of Ferajji and his companion, when they at once, in a body,
made a descent on his hut and secured him. With the zeal which always
distinguished him in my service, Sarmean had procured a forked pole,
between the prongs of which the neck of the absconder was placed; and
a cross stick, firmly lashed, effectually prevented him from relieving
himself of the incumbrance attached to him so deftly.
There were no less than seven packets of letters and newspapers from
Zanzibar, which had been collecting during my absence from Unyanyembe.
These had been intrusted at various times to the chiefs of caravans, who
had faithfully delivered them at my tembe, according to their promise
to the Consul. There was one packet for me, which contained two or
three letters for Dr. Livingstone, to whom, of course, they were at once
transferred, with my congratulations. In the same packet there was also
a letter to me from the British Consul at Zanzibar requesting me to take
charge of Livingstone's goods and do the best I could to forward them on
to him, dated 25th September, 1871, five days after I left Unyanyembe on
my apparently hopeless task.
"Well, Doctor," said I to Livingstone, "the English Consul requests me
to do all I can to push forward your goods to you. I am sorry that I did
not get the authority sooner, for I should have attempted it; but in the
absence of these instructions I have done the best I could by pushing
you towards the goods. The mountain has not been able to advance
towards Mohammed, but Mohammed has been compelled to advance towards the
But Dr. Livingstone was too deeply engrossed in his own letters from
home, which were just a year old.
I received good and bad news from New York, but the good news was
subsequent, and wiped out all feelings that might have been evoked had I
received the bad only. But the newspapers, nearly a hundred of them, New
York, Boston, and London journals, were full of most wonderful news. The
Paris Commune was in arms against the National Assembly; the Tuileries,
the Louvre, and the ancient city Lutetia Parisiorum had been set in
flames by the blackguards of Saint-Antoine! French troops massacring
and murdering men, women, and children; rampant diabolism, and incarnate
revenge were at work in the most beautiful city in the world! Fair women
converted into demons, and dragged by ruffianly soldiery through the
streets to universal execration and pitiless death; children of tender
age pinned to the earth and bayoneted; men innocent or not, shot, cut,
stabbed, slashed, destroyed - a whole city given up to the summa injuria
of an infuriate, reckless, and brutal army! Oh France! Oh Frenchmen!
Such things are unknown even in the heart of barbarous Central Africa.
We spurned the newspapers with our feet; and for relief to sickened
hearts gazed on the comic side of our world, as illustrated in the
innocent pages of 'Punch.' Poor 'Punch!' good-hearted, kindly-natured
'Punch!' a traveller's benison on thee! Thy jokes were as physic; thy
innocent satire was provocative of hysteric mirth.
Our doors were crowded with curious natives, who looked with
indescribable wonder at the enormous sheets. I heard them repeat the
words, "Khabari Kisungu" - white man's news - often, and heard them
discussing the nature of such a quantity of news, and expressing their
belief that the "Wasungu" were "mbyah sana," and very "mkali;" by which
they meant to say that the white men were very wicked, and very smart
and clever though the term wicked is often employed to express high
On the fourth day from Ugunda, or the 18th of February, and the
fifty-third day from Ujiji, we made our appearance with flags flying
and guns firing in the valley of Kwihara, and when the Doctor and myself
passed through the portals of my old quarters I formally welcomed him to
Unyanyembe and to my house.
Since the day I had left the Arabs, sick and, weary almost with my
life, but, nevertheless, imbued with the high hope that my mission would
succeed, 131 days had elapsed - with what vicissitudes of fortune the
reader well knows - during which time I had journeyed over 1,200 miles.
The myth after which I travelled through the wilderness proved to be
a fact; and never was the fact more apparent than when the Living Man
walked with me arm in arm to my old room, and I said to him, "Doctor, we
are at last HOME!"
CHAPTER XV. - HOMEWARD BOUND. - LIVINGSTONE'S LAST WORDS - THE FINAL
Unyanyembe was now to me a terrestrial Paradise. Livingstone was no less
happy; he was in comfortable quarters, which were a palace compared to
his hut in Ujiji. Our store-rooms were full of the good things of this
life, besides cloth, beads, wire, and the thousand and one impedimenta
and paraphernalia of travel with which I had loaded over one hundred and
fifty men at Bagamoyo. I had seventy-four loads of miscellaneous things,
the most valuable of which were now to be turned over to Livingstone,
for his march back to the sources of the Nile.
It was a great day with, us when, with hammer and chisel, I broke open
the Doctor's boxes, that we might feast our famished stomachs on the
luxuries which were to redeem us from the effect of the cacotrophic
dourra and maize food we had been subjected to in the wilderness.
I conscientiously believed that a diet on potted ham, crackers, and
jellies would make me as invincible as Talus, and that I only required
a stout flail to be able to drive the mighty Wagogo into the regions of
annihilation, should they dare even to wink in a manner I disapproved.
The first box opened contained three tins of biscuits, six tins of
potted hams - tiny things, not much larger than thimbles, which, when
opened, proved to be nothing more than a table-spoonful of minced meat
plentifully seasoned with pepper: the Doctor's stores fell five hundred
degrees below zero in my estimation. Next were brought out five pots of
jam, one of which was opened - this was also a delusion. The stone jars
weighed a pound, and in each was found a little over a tea-spoonful
of jam. Verily, we began to think our hopes and expectations had
been raised to too high a pitch. Three bottles of curry were next
produced - but who cares for curry? Another box was opened, and out
tumbled a fat dumpy Dutch cheese, hard as a brick, but sound and good;
though it is bad for the liver in Unyamwezi. Then another cheese was
seen, but this was all eaten up - it was hollow and a fraud. The third
box contained nothing but two sugar loaves; the fourth, candles; the
fifth, bottles of salt, Harvey, Worcester, and Reading sauces, essence
of anchovies, pepper, and mustard. Bless me! what food were these for
the revivifying of a moribund such as I was! The sixth box contained
four shirts, two pairs of stout shoes, some stockings and shoe-strings,
which delighted the Doctor so much when he tried them on that he
exclaimed, "Richard is himself again!" "That man," said I, "whoever he
is, is a friend, indeed." "Yes, that is my friend Waller."
The five other boxes contained potted meat and soups; but the twelfth,
containing one dozen bottles of medicinal brandy, was gone; and a strict
cross-examination of Asmani, the head man of Livingstone's caravan,
elicited the fact, that not only was one case of brandy missing, but
also two bales of cloth and four bags of the most valuable beads in
Africa - sami-sami - which are as gold with the natives.
I was grievously disappointed after the stores had been examined;
everything proved to be deceptions in my jaundiced eyes. Out of the
tins of biscuits when opened, there was only one sound box; the whole of
which would not make one full meal. The soups - who cared for meat soups
in Africa? Are there no bullocks, and sheep, and goats in the land, from
which far better soup can be made than any that was ever potted? Peas,
or any other kind of vegetable soup, would have been a luxury; but
chicken and game soups! - what nonsense!
I then overhauled my own stores. I found some fine old brandy and one
bottle of champagne still left; though it was evident, in looking at the
cloth bales, that dishonesty had been at work; and some person
happened to suggest Asmani - the head man sent by Dr. Kirk in charge
of Livingstone's goods - as the guilty party. Upon his treasures being
examined, I found eight or ten coloured cloths, with the mark of my own
agent at Zanzibar on them. As he was unable to give a clear account of
how they came in his box, they were at once confiscated, and distributed
among the most deserving of the Doctor's people. Some of the watchmen
also accused him of having entered into my store-room, and of having
abstracted two or three gorah of domestics from my bales, and of having,
some days afterwards, snatched the keys from the hands of one of my men,
and broken them, lest other people might enter, and find evidences of
his guilt. As Asmani was proved to be another of the "moral idiots,"
Livingstone discharged him on the spot. Had we not arrived so soon at
Unyanyembe, it is probable that the entire stock sent from Zanzibar had
in time disappeared.
Unyanyembe being rich in fruits, grain, and cattle, we determined to
have our Christmas dinner over again in style, and, being fortunately in
pretty good health, I was enabled to superintend its preparation. Never
was such prodigality seen in a tembe of Unyamwezi as was seen in ours,
nor were ever such delicacies provided.
There were but few Arabs in Unyanyembe when we arrived, as they were
investing the stronghold of Mirambo. About a week after our return,
"the little mannikin," Sheikh Sayd bin Salim - El Wali - who was the
commander-in-chief of their forces, came to Kwihara from the front. But
the little Sheikh was in no great hurry to greet the man he had wronged
so much. As soon as we heard of his arrival we took the opportunity to
send men immediately after the goods which were forwarded to the Wali's
care soon after Livingstone's departure for Mikindany Bay. The first
time we sent men for them the governor declared himself too sick to
attend to such matters, but the second day they were surrendered, with
a request that the Doctor would not be very angry at their condition, as
the white ants had destroyed everything.
The stores this man had detained at Unyanyembe were in a most sorry
state. The expenses were prepaid for their carriage to Ujiji, but the
goods had been purposely detained at this place by Sayd bin Salim since
1867 that he might satisfy his appetite for liquor, and probably fall
heir to two valuable guns that were known to be with them. The white
ants had not only eaten up bodily the box in which the guns were packed,
but they had also eaten the gunstocks. The barrels were corroded, and
the locks were quite destroyed. The brandy bottles, most singular
to relate, had also fallen a prey to the voracious and irresistible
destroyers the white ants - and, by some unaccountable means, they had
imbibed the potent Hennessy, and replaced the corks with corn-cobs. The
medicines had also vanished, and the zinc pots in which they had been
snugly packed up were destroyed by corrosion. Two bottles of brandy and
one small zinc case of medicines only were saved out of the otherwise
I also begged the Doctor to send to Sheikh Sayd, and ask him if he had
received the two letters despatched by him upon his first arrival at
Ujiji for Dr. Kirk and Lord Clarendon; and if he had forwarded them to
the coast, as he was desired to do. The reply to the messengers was in
the affirmative; and, subsequently, I obtained the same answer in the
presence of the Doctor,
On the 222nd of February, the pouring rain, which had dogged us the
entire distance from Ujiji, ceased, and we had now beautiful weather;
and while I prepared for the homeward march, the Doctor was busy writing
his letters, and entering his notes into his journal, which I was to
take to his family. When not thus employed, we paid visits to the Arabs
at Tabora, by whom we were both received with that bounteous hospitality
for which they are celebrated.
Among the goods turned over by me to Dr. Livingstone, while assorting
such cloths as I wished to retain for my homeward trip, were -
First-class American sheeting... 285 = 1140
" Kaniki (blue stuff)... 16 = 64
Medium " (blue stuff)... 60 = 240
" Dabwani cloth.... 41 = 64
Barsati cloths.... 28 = 112
Printed handkerchiefs.. 70 = 280
Medium Rehani cloth..... 127 = 508
" Ismahili " .... 20 = 80
" Sohari "..... 20 = 80
4 pieces fine Kungura (red check) 22 = 88
4 gorah Rehani....... 8 = 32
Total number of cloths. 697 = 2788
Cloth, 2788 yards.
Assorted beads, 16 sacks, weight = 992 lbs.
Brass wire, Nos. 5 and 6; 10 fraslilah = 350 lbs.
1 canvas tent, waterproof.
1 boat (canvas}
1 bag of tools, carpenter's.
1 rip saw.
2 barrels of tar.
12 sheets of ship's copper = 60 lbs.
1 Jocelyn breech-loader (metallic cartridge).
1 Starr's " " "
1 Henry (16-shooter) " "
200 rounds revolver ammunition.
2000 " Jocelyn and Starrs ammunition.
1500 " Henry rifle ammunition.
Cooking utensils, medicine chest, books, sextant, canvas bags, &c., &c.,
The above made a total of about forty loads. Many things in the list
would have brought fancy prices in Unyanyembe, especially the carbines
and ammunition, the saw, carpenter's tools the beads, and wire. Out of
the thirty-three loads which were stored for him in my tembe - the stock
sent to Livingstone, Nov. 1,1870 - but few of them would be available for
his return trip to Rua and Manyuema. The 696 doti of cloth which were
left to him formed the only marketable articles of value he possessed;
and in Manyuema, where the natives manufactured their own cloth, such
an article would be considered a drug; while my beads and wire, with
economy, would suffice to keep him and his men over two years in those
regions. His own cloth, and what I gave him, made in the aggregate 1,393
doti, which, at 2 doti per day for food, were sufficient to keep him and
sixty men 696 days. He had thus four years' supplies. The only articles
he lacked to make a new and completely fitted-up expedition were the
following, a list of which he and I drew up; -
A few tins of American wheat-flour. " " soda crackers.
" " preserved fruits
A few tins of salmon, 10 lbs. Hyson tea. Some sewing thread and needles.
1 dozen official envelopes. 'Nautical Almanac' for 1872 and 1873. 1
blank journal. 1 chronometer, stopped. 1 chain for refractory people.
With the articles just named he would have a total of seventy loads,
but without carriers they were an incumbrance to him; for, with only
the nine men which he now had, he could go nowhere with such a splendid
assortment of goods. I was therefore commissioned to enlist, - as soon as
I reached Zanzibar, - fifty freemen, arm them with a gun and hatchet each
man, besides accoutrements, and to purchase two thousand bullets, one
thousand flints, and ten kegs of gunpowder. The men were to act as
carriers, to follow wherever Livingstone might desire to go. For,
without men, he was simply tantalized with the aspirations roused in him
by the knowledge that he had abundance of means, which were irrealizable
without carriers. All the wealth of London and New York piled before
him were totally unavailable to him without the means of locomotion. No
Mnyamwezi engages himself as carrier during war-time. You who have read
the diary of my 'Life in Unyanyembe' know what stubborn Conservatives
the Wanyamwezi are. A duty lay yet before me which I owed to my
illustrious companion, and that was to hurry to the coast as if on a
matter of life and death - act for him in the matter of enlisting men as
if he were there himself - to work for him with the same zeal as I would
for myself - not to halt or rest until his desires should be gratified,
And this I vowed to do; but it was a death-blow to my project of going
down the Nile, and getting news of Sir S. Baker.
The Doctor's task of writing his letters was ended. He delivered into my
hand twenty letters for Great Britain, six for Bombay, two for New York,
and one for Zanzibar. The two letters for New York were for James Gordon
Bennett, junior, as he alone, not his father, was responsible for
the Expedition sent under my command. I beg the reader's pardon for
republishing one of these letters here, as its spirit and style indicate
the man, the mere knowledge of whose life or death was worth a costly
Ujiji, on Tanganika, East Africa, November, 1871.
James Gordon Bennett, Jr., Esq.
My Dear Sir, - It is in general somewhat difficult to write to one we
have never seen - it feels so much like addressing an abstract idea - but
the presence of your representative, Mr. H. M. Stanley, in this distant
region takes away the strangeness I should otherwise have felt, and in
writing to thank you for the extreme kindness that prompted you to send
him, I feel quite at home.
If I explain the forlorn condition in which he found me you will easily
perceive that I have good reason to use very strong expressions of
gratitude. I came to Ujiji off a tramp of between four hundred and five
hundred miles, beneath a blazing vertical sun, having been baffled,
worried, defeated and forced to return, when almost in sight of the end
of the geographical part of my mission, by a number of half-caste Moslem
slaves sent to me from Zanzibar, instead of men. The sore heart made
still sorer by the woeful sights I had seen of man's inhumanity to man
racked and told on the bodily frame, and depressed it beyond measure.
I thought that I was dying on my feet. It is not too much to say that
almost every step of the weary sultry way was in pain, and I reached
Ujiji a mere ruckle of bones.
There I found that some five hundred pounds' sterling worth of goods
which I had ordered from Zanzibar had unaccountably been entrusted to
a drunken half-caste Moslem tailor, who, after squandering them for
sixteen months on the way to Ujiji; finished up by selling off all that
remained for slaves and ivory for himself. He had "divined" on the
Koran and found that I was dead. He had also written to the Governor of
Unyanyembe that he had sent slaves after me to Manyuema, who returned
and reported my decease, and begged permission to sell off the few goods
that his drunken appetite had spared.
He, however, knew perfectly well, from men who had seen me, that I was
alive, and waiting for the goods and men; but as for morality, he is
evidently an idiot, and there being no law here except that of the
dagger or musket, I had to sit down in great weakness, destitute of
everything save a few barter cloths and beads, which I had taken the
precaution to leave here in case of extreme need.
The near prospect of beggary among Ujijians made me miserable.
I could not despair, because I laughed so much at a friend who, on