Copyright
Josiah Tyler.

Livingstone lost and found online

. (page 32 of 51)
Online LibraryJosiah TylerLivingstone lost and found → online text (page 32 of 51)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


so, I ordered a man to each canoe, to be seated there with
a loaded gun in each man's hands.

After this little episode we got on very well until all the
men excepting two, besides Bombay and myself, were safe on
the other side.

"We then drove a donkey into the river, having first tied a
strong halter to his neck ; but he had barely reached the mid-
dle of the river when a crocodile, darting beneath, seized him
by the neck and dragged him under, after several frantic but



476 A CROCODILE DINES OX DONKEY.

ineffectual endeavors to draw him ashore. A sadness stole
over all after witnessing this scene, and as the shades of night
had now drawn around us, and had tinged the river to a
black, dismal color, it was with a feeling of relief that the
fatal river was crossed, that we all set foot ashore.

In the morning the other donkey swam the river safe
enough, the natives firmly declaring that they had so covered
him with medicine, that though the crocodiles swarmed
around him they did not dare attack the animal, so potent
was the medicine for which I had to give a present, such as
became a kindness. I rather incline to the belief, however,
that the remaining donkey owed his safety to the desertion
of the river for the banks, where they love to bask in the
sun undisturbed, as the neighborhood of the ferry was con-
stantly disturbed, and the donkey consequently escaped the
jaws of the crocodiles.

The notes in my journal of what occurred on the following
day read as follows

KATALAMBTTLA, 1ST. N. W., 1-J hours. )
November 3d, Friday, 1871. J

"What talk ! What excitement, so grotesque, yet so fren-
zied ! Withal what anxiety have we suffered since we came
to Uvinza ! These people are worse than the Wagogs, and
their greed is immeasurable. They are more noisy and
intolerable, especially those who dwell close to the river.
Their pride, the guide says, is because they have possession
of the river, and all men have to speak them fair, pay high
tribute, etc. On the northern side, though, I find the
Wavinza more amiable and more favorably disposed towards
caravans, because they bring terms, and might on a pinch
help them against their cruel neighbors, the Watuta.
Before crossing the river a native guide, procured from
the son of Nzogera, who lives on the frontier, was recog-
nized as a spy in the service of Lokandamira, who is at war
against King Nzogera. The cry for rope to bind him
was quickly responded to, for every tree in their vicinity
was furnished with enough strong bark to tie a dozen



A CARAVAN FROM UJIJL 479

spies. They afterwards conveyed him to Kwi-Kuru, or the
capital of Nzogera, which is situated a few miles below here,
on an island well guarded by crocodiles. Lokandamira is at
war with Nzogera about certain salt-pans which must, of
course, belong to the strongest party, for might is right in this
world.

We set out from the banks of the river with two new
guides, furnished us by the old man (Usenge is his name) of
the ferry. Arriving at Isinga after traversing a saline plain,
which, as we advanced into the interior, grew wonderfully
fertile, we were told by the native Kirangozi that to-morrow's
inarch would have to be made with great caution, for
Makumbi, a great warrior chief of Nzogera, was returning
triumphantly from war, and it was his custom to leave noth-
ing behind him at such times. Intoxicated with victory, he
attacked villages and caravans, and of whatever live stock,
slaves or bales he met, he took what he liked. The result
of a month's campaign against Lokandamira, were two villages
captured, several men and a son of Nzogera's enemy being
killed, while Makumbi only lost three men in battle and two
from drinking too much water. So the Kirangozi says.

Near Isinga, met a caravan of eighty waguhha direct from
Ujiji, bearing oil, and bound for Unyanyembe. They report
that a white man was left by them five days ago at Ujiji.
lie had the same color as I have, weare the same shoes, the
same clothes, and has hair on his face like I have, only his is
white. This is Livingstone. Hurrah for Ujiji ! My men
share my joy, for we shall be coming back now directly ;
and, being so happy at the prospect, I buy three goats and
five gallons of native beer, which will be eaten and drank
directly."

Two marches from Malagarazi brought us to Uhha.
Kawanga was the first place in Uhha where we halted. It is
the village where resides the first mutware, or chief, to whom
caravans have to pay tribute. To this man we paid twelve
and a half doti, upon the understanding that we would have
to pay no more between here and Ujiji. Next morning,



480 A SLIGHT TO THE KING OF UHHA.

buoyed up by the hope that we should soon come to our
journey's end, we had arranged to make a long march of it
that day.

We left Kawanga cheerfully enough. The country undu-
lated gently before us like the prairie of Nebraska, as devoid
of trees almost as our own plains. The top of every wave of
land enabled us to see the scores of villages which dotted its
surface, though it required keen eyes to detect at a distance
the bee-hive and straw-thatched huts from the bleached grass
of the plain.

We marched an hour, probably, and were passing a large
village, with populous suburbs about it, when we saw a large
party pursuing us, who, when they had come up to us, asked
us how we dared pass by without paying the tribute to the
king of Uhha.

"We have paid it !" we said quite astonished.

"To whom?"

" To the chief of Kawanga."

"How much?"

"Twelve and a half doti."

"Oh, but that is only for himself. However, you had
better stop and rest at our village until we find all about it."

But we halted in the middle of the road until the messen-
gers they sent came back. Seeing our reluctance to halt at
their village, they sent men also to Mionvu, living an arrow's
flight from where we were halted, to warn him of our con-
tumacy. Mionvu came to us, robed most royally, after the
fashion of Central Africa, in a crimson cloth, arranged toga-
like over his shoulder and depending to his ankles, and a
bran new piece of Massachusetts sheeting folded around his
head. He greeted us graciously he was the prince of polite-
ness shook hands first with myself, then with my head men,
and cast a keen glance around, in order, as I thought, to
measure our strength. Then seating himself, he spoke with
deliberation something in this style :

" Why does the white man stand in the road ? The sun is
hot ; let him seek the shelter of my village, where we can



FLEECED BY MIONVU OX THE VERGE OF RUIN. 481

arrange this little matter between us. Does tie not know
that there is a king in TJhha, and that I, Mionvu, am his
servant ? It is a custom with us to make friends with great
men, such as the white man. All Arabs and Wanguana stop
here and give us cloth. Does the white man mean to go on
without paying ? "Why should he desire war 2 I know he
is stronger than we are here, his men have guns, and we
have but spears and arrows; but Uhha is large, and has
plenty of people. The children of the king are many. If
he comes to be a friend to us he will come to our village,
give us something, and then go on his way."

The armed warriors around applauded the very common-
place speech of Mionvu, because it spoke the feelings with
which they viewed our bales. Certain am I, though, that
one portion of his speech that which related to our being
stronger than "Walilia was an untruth, and that he knew it,
and that he only wished us to start hostilities in order that
he might have good reason for seizing the whole.

I submitted to Mionvu's proposition, and went with him
to his village, where he fleeced me to his heart's content.
His demand, which he adhered to like a man who knew what
he was about, was sixty doti for the king, twelve doti for
himself, three for his wife, three each to three makko, or sub-
chiefs, one to Mibrnri's little boy ; total eighty five doti, or
one good bale of cloth. Not one doti did he abate, though
I talked from ten A. M. until six P. M. I went to bed that
night like a man on the verge of ruin. However, Mionvu
said that we would have to pay no more in TJhha.

Pursuing our way next day, after a four hours' march, we
came to Kahirigi, and quartered ourselves in a large village,
governed over by Mionvu's brother, who had already been
advised by Mionvu of the windfall in store- for him. This
man, as soon as we had set the tent, put in a claim for thirty
doti, which I was able to reduce after much eloquence, last-
ing over five hours, to twenty-six doti. I am short enough
in relating it because I am tired of the theme ; but there lives
not a man in the whole United States with whom I would
25



482 A NIGHT MARCH.

not have gladly exchanged positions had it been possible. 1
saw my fine array of bales being reduced fast. Four more
such demands as Miouvu's, would leave me, in unclassic
phrase, " cleaned out."

After paying this last tribute, as it was night, I closed my
tent and, lighting my pipe, began to think seriously upon my
position and how to reach Ujiji without paying more tribute.
It was high time to resort either to battle or to strategy of
some kind, possibly, to striking into the jungle ; but there
was no jungle in Uhha, and a man might be seen miles off on
its naked plains. At least this last was the plan most
likely to succeed, without endangering the prospects almost
within reach of the expedition.

Calling the guide, I questioned him as to its feasibility,
first scolding him for leading me to such a strait. He
said there was a Mguana, a slave of Thani Bin Abdullah, in
the Coma, with whom I might consult. Sending for him,
he presently came, and I began to ask him for how much he
would guide us out of Uhha without being compelled to pay
any more muhongo.

He' replied that it was a hard thing to do, unless I had
complete control over my men and they could be got to do
exactly as I told them. When satisfied on this point he
entered into an agreement to show me a road or rather to
lead me to it that might be clear of all habitations as far as
Ujiji, for twelve doti, paid beforehand. The cloth was paid
to him at once.

At half -past two A. M. the men were ready, and, stealing
silently past the huts, the guide opened the gates, and we
filed out one by one as quietly as possible. The moon was
bright, and by it we perceived that we were striking across
a burned plain in a southerly direction, and then turned west-
ward, parallel with the high road, at the distance of four
miles, sometimes lessening or increasing that distance as cir-
cumstances compelled us.

At dawn we crossed the swift Kusizi, which flowed south-
ward into the Malagarazi, after which we took a northwesterly



A WOMAN'S FREAK HER HUSBAND'S THREAT. 483

direction through a thick jungle of bamboo. There was no
road, and behind us we left but little trail on the hard, dry-
ground. At eight A. M. we halted for breakfast, having
inarched nearly six hours within the jungle which stretched
for miles around ns.

We were only once on the point of being discovered
through the mad freak of a weak-brained woman, who was
the wife of one of the black soldiers. We were crossing the
knee-deep Rusizi, when this woman, suddenly and without
cause, took it into her head to shriek and shout as if a croco-
dile had bitten her. The guide implored me to stop her
shrieking, or she would alarm the whole country, and we
would have hundreds of angry Wahha about us. The men
were already preparing to bolt several being on the run
with their loads.

At my order to stop her noise, she launched into another
fit of hysterical shrieking, and I was compelled to stop her
cries with three or four smart cuts across her .shoulders,
though I felt rather ashamed of myself; but our lives and the
success of the expedition was worth more, in my opinion,
than a hundred of such women. As a further precaution
she was gagged and her arms tied behind her, and a cord led
from her waist to that of her liege lord's, who gladly took
upon himself the task of looking after her, and who threat-
ened to cut her head off if she attempted to make another
outcry.

At ten A.M. we resumed our journey, and after three hours
camped at Lake Musuma, a body of water which during the
rainy season, has a length of three miles and a breadth of two
miles. It is one of a group of lakes which fill deep hollows
in the plain of Uhha. They swarm with hippopotami, and
their shores are favorite resorts of large herds of buffalo and
game. The eland and buffalo especially are in large num-
bers here, and the elephant and rhinoceros are exceedingly
numerous. We saw several of these, but did not dare to fire.

On the second morning after crossing the Sunuzzi and
Rngufu Elvers, we had just started from our camp, and as



4S4 AN ALARM APPROACH TO UJIJI.

there was no moonlight the head of the column came to a
village, whose inhabitants, as we heard a few voices, were
about starting. "We were all struck with consternation ; but,
consulting with the guide, we despatched our goats and
chickens, and leaving them in the road, faced about, retraced
our steps, and after a quarter of an hour struck up a ravine,
and descended several precipitous places ; about half -past six
o'clock we found ourselves in Ukaranga safe and free from
all tribute taking Wahha.

Exultant shouts were given equivalent to the Anglo-
Saxon hurrah upon our success. Addressing the men, I
asked them :

" "Why should we halt when but a few hours from
Ujiji ? Let us march a few hours more, and to-morrow
we shall see the white man at Ujiji, and who knows but this
may be the man we are seeking ? Let us go on, and after
to-morrow we shall have fish for dinner, and many days' rest
afterwards, every day eating the fish of the Tanganyika.
Stop ; I think I smell the Tanganyika fish even now."

This speech was hailed with what the newspapers call " loud
applause, great cheering," and " !Ngema very well, master ; "
" Hyah Barak- Allah Onward, and the blessing of God be
on you."

We strode from the frontier at the rate of four miles an
hour, and, after six hours' march, the tired caravan entered
the woods which separate the residence of the chief of
L'karanga from the villages on the Mkuti River. As we
drew near the village we went slower, unfurled the Ameri-
can and Zanzibar flags, presenting quite an imposing array.

When we came in sight of ISyamtaga, the name of the
sultan's residence, and our flags and numerous guns were
seen, the Wakaranga and their sultan deserted their
village en masse, and rushed into the woods, believing
that we were Hirambo's robbers, r who, after destroying
TTnyanyembe, were come to destroy the Arabs and Bunder
of TTjiji ; but he and his people were soon reassured, and came
forward to welcome us with presents of goats and beer, all



FIRST VIEW OF THE TANGANYIKA. 485

of winch, were very welcome after the exceedingly lengthy
marches we had recently undertaken.

Rising at early dawn our new clothes were brought forth
again, that we might present as decent an appearance as pos-
sible before the Arabs of Ujiji, and my helmet was well
chalked and a new puggeree folded around it ; my boots were
well oiled, and my white flannels put on, and altogether, with-
out joking, I might have paraded the streets of Bombay,
without attracting any very great attention.

A couple of hours brought us to the base of the hill, from
the top of which the Kirangozi said we could obtain a view
of the great Tanganyika Lake. Heedless of the rough path
or of the toilsome steep, spurred onward by the cheery prom-
ise, the ascent was performed in a short time. On arriving
at the top we beheld it at last from the spot whence, proba-
bly Burton and Speke looked at it " the one in a half para-
lyzed state, the other almost blind." Indeed, I was pleased
at the sight ; and, as we descended, it opened more and more
into view until it was revealed at last into a grand inland sea,
bounded westward by an appalling and black-blue rfenge of
mountains, and stretching north and south without bounds, a
gray expanse of water.

From the western base of the hill was a three hours' march,
though no march ever passed off so quickly. The hours
seemed to have been quarters, we had seen so much that was
novel and rare to us who had been traveling so long on the
highlands. The mountains bounding the lake on the east-
ward receded and the lake advanced. We had crossed the
Ruche, or Linche, and its thick belt of tall matete grass. We
had plunged into a perfect forest of them, and had entered
into the cultivated fields which supply the port of Ujiji with
vegetables, etc., and we stood at last on the summit of the
last hill of the myriads we had crossed, and the port of Ujiji,
embowered in palms, with the tiny waves of the silver waters
of the Tanganyika rolling at its feet, was directly below us.

We are now about descending in a few minutes we shall
have reached the spot where we imagine the object of our



486 OUR SALUTE TO THE UJUIAXS THE STARS AND STRIPES.

search our fate will soon be decided. No one in that town
knows we are coining ; least of all do they know we are close
to them. If any of them ever heard of the white man at
TJnyanyembe, they must believe we are there yet. "We shall
take them all by surprise, for no other but a white man
would dare leave Unyanyembe for Ujiji with the country in
such a distracted state no other but a crazy white man,
whom Sheikh, the son of Nasib, is going to report to Syedor
Prince Burghash for not taking his advice.

"Well, we are but a mile from Ujiji now, and it is high
time we should let them know a caravan is coming; so
" Commence firing " is the word passed along the length of
the column, and gladly do they begin. They have loaded
their muskets half full, and they roar like a broadside of a
line-of-battle ship. Down go the ramrods, sending home
huge charges to the breech, and volley after volley is fired.

The flags are fluttered ; the banner of America is in front
waving joyfully ; the guide is in the zenith of his glory. The
former residents of Zanzibar will know it directly, and will
wonder as well they may as to what it means. Never
were the Stars and Stripes so beautiful to my mind the
breeze of the Tanganyika has such an effect on them. The
guide blows his horn, and the shrill wild clangor of it is far
and near ; and still the cannon muskets tell the noisy seconds.

By this time the Arabs are fully alarmed ; the natives of
Ujiji, Waguhha, "Warundi, "Wanguana, and I know not whom,
hurry up by the hundreds to ask what it all means this
fusillading, shouting and blowing of horns, and flag-flying.
There are "Yambos" shouted out to me by the dozen, and
delighted Arabs have run up breathlessly to shake my hands
and ask anxiously where I came from. But I have no
patience with them. The expedition goes far too slow. I
should like to settle the vexed question by one personal view.
Where is he ? Has he fled ?

Suddenly a man a black man at my elbow shouts in
English :-

"How do you sir?"



"DR. LIVINGSTONE, I PRESUME." 487

' Hello ! who in the deuce are you ? "

" I am the servant of Dr. Livingstone," he says ; but before
I can ask any more questions he is running like a madman
towards the town.

We have at last entered the town. There are hundreds of
people around me I might say thousands without exagger-
ation, it seems to me. It is a grand triumphal procession.
As we move they move. All eyes are drawn towards us.
The expedition at last comes to a halt ; the journey is ended
for a time ; but I alone have a few more steps to make.

There is a group of the most respectable Arabs, and as I
come nearer I see the white face of an old man among them.
He has a cap with a gold band around it, his dress is a short
jacket of red blanket cloth, and his pants well, I didn't
observe. I am shaking hands with him. We raise our hats,
and I say :

" Dr. Livingstone, I presume ? "

And he says, " Yes."

Finis coronat opus.




CHAPTER XXIX.
INTERCOURSE WITH LIVINGSTONE,

goal was won. Livingstone was found ; and Stanley
JL was his guest at Ujiji. The solitary bottle of cham-
paign, which had been brought safely all the way from the
coast, had also been disposed of in the manner which Stanley
had determined it should be if he found Livingstone alive ;
and Livingstone, doubtless, relished his share as well as he
did some wine the first he ever drank in Africa given him
as a medicine, on his reaching the West Coast in an exhausted
condition, some seventeen years previously.

That Stanley was gratified and happily disappointed at the
welcome given him at Ujiji, there can be no doubt ; and from
looking upon Livingstone as a professional interviewer, intent
only on obtaining copy for the journal he represented, he
soon began to take a strong interest in the character and
inner life of his genial host, and gives us his impression of
them as follows :

" We were met at last. The Herald? s special correspondent
had seen Dr. Livingstone, whom more than three-fourths of
all who had ever heard of him believed to be dead. Yet at
noon, on the 10th of November of this year, I first shook
hands with him, and said to him, ' Doctor, I thank God I
have been permitted to shake hands with you.' I said it all
very soberly and with due dignity, because there were so
many Arabs about us, and the circumstances under which I

appeared did not warrant me to do anything else. I was as

490



STANLEY'S WELCOME AT UJIJI. 491

much a stranger to Livingstone as I was to any Arab there.
And, if Arabs do not like to see any irregularity, indeed I
think that Englishmen must be placed in the same category.

But what does all this preface and what may this prolixity
mean ? Well, it means this, that I looked upon Livingstone
as an Englishman, and I feared that if I showed any unusual
joy at meeting with him, he might conduct himself very
much as another Englishman did once whom I met in the
interior of another foreign and strange land wherein we two
were the only English-speaking people to be found within
the area of two hundred miles square, and who, upon my
greeting him with a cordial " Good morning," would not
answer me, but screwed on a large eye-glass, in a manner
which must have been as painful to him as it was to me, and
then deliberately viewed my horse and myself for the space
of about thirty seconds, and passed on his way, with as much
insouciance as if he had seen me a thousand times and there
was nothing at all in the meeting to justify him coming ont
of that shell of imperturbability with which he had covered
himself.

Besides, I had heard all sorts of things from a quondam
companion of his about him. He was eccentric, I was told ;
nay, almost a misanthrope, who hated the sight of Europeans ;
who, if Burton, Speke, Grant or anybody of that kind were
coming to see him, would make haste to put as many miles
as possible between himself and such a person. He was a
man, also, whom no one could get along with it was almost
impossible to please him ; he was a man who kept no journal,
whose discoveries would certainly perish with him unless he
himself came back. This was the man I was shaking hands
with, whom I had done my utmost to surprise, lest he should
run away. Consequently you may know why I did not dare
manifest any extraordinary joy upon my success. But,
really, had there been no one present none of those cynical
minded Arabs I mean I think I should have betrayed the
emotions which possessed me, instead of which I only said,

" Doctor, I thank God I have been permitted to shake hand



492 LIVINGSTONE AT HOME.

with you." Which he returned with a grateful and welcome
smile.

Together we turned our faces towards his tembe. He
pointed to the veranda of his house, which was an unrailed
platform, built of mud, covered by wide overhanging eaves.
He pointed to his own particular seat, on a carpet of goat-
skins spread over a thick mat of palm leaf. I protested
against taking his seat, but he insisted, and I yielded. "We
were seated, the Doctor and I, with our backs to the wall,
the Arabs to our right and left and in front, the natives
forming a dark perspective beyond.

Then began conversation ; I forget what about ; possibly
about the road I took from Unyanyembe, but I am not sure.
I know the Doctor was talking, and I was answering
mechanically. I was conning the indomitable, energetic,
patient and persevering traveler, at whose side I now sat in
Central Africa. Every hair of his head and beard, every line
and wrinkle of his face, the wan face, the fatigued form,



Online LibraryJosiah TylerLivingstone lost and found → online text (page 32 of 51)