The Tar Baby and the Tomahawk: Race and Ethnic Images in American Children's Literature, 1880-1939


Six Years in the Wilds of Central Africa

Fifth Paper.

EARLY in 1887, my quiet little Station at the Equator was thrown into a fever of excitement by a very interesting occurrence.

The shouts from my men, "Sail ho! Sail, ho!" made known to me that a boat had been sighted.

I hastily ran to the beach and saw the little steamer "Peace" breasting the rapid river at the point just below, and out in the stream were "Le Stanley" and the "Henry Reed," each towing lighters alongside, and battling against the swift current. I could see that the decks of all the boats were crowded with blacks, and besides the natives there were several white men aboard.

It was evident to me that some important expedition was on its way up-river in this formidable flotilla.

As the first boat neared my beach, I glanced along her deck, and to my intense delight I saw standing in the bow of the Peace my old chief Mr. Stanley. Having received no warning of the arrival of this expedition, it was naturally a great surprise. I felt beside myself with excitement, and shouted, "Hip, hip, hurrah!" at the top of my voice as the boat touched the shore.

Mr. Stanley was dressed in his usual traveling costume of jacket, knickerbockers, and peak cap, and he looked remarkably well. He dined with me, and explained during the evening that the black crowds on board the boats were men of his expedition for the relief of Emin Bay at Wadelai.

The next day was occupied by the members of the expedition in procuring food for the journey, and by the crews of the boats in cutting dry wood for the steamers.

I had then the pleasure of meeting Stanley's gallant officers, whose names are now so well known to the world.

The Equator Station had never seen so busy a day. Crowds of Zanzibaris, Soudanese, and other natives hurried about all day; and old Tippu Tib, the well-known Arab chief, who was being taken up to his headquarters at Stanley Falls, pitched his tent in my yard. He and his followers occupied it during their stay. Tippu was certainly a fine-looking old fellow and a very intelligent man. He looks like a pure negro and shows no sign of the Arab blood which is supposed to be in his veins. He wore a long white linen shirt, and around his waist a silk sash in which was stuck his dagger. On his feet were a pair of light sandals.

Being able to speak his language, I had quite a long talk with him, and I was surprised at his accurate knowledge concerning European matters.

Mr. Stanley was exceedingly jolly all day; nothing occurred to worry or trouble him during his brief stay at my Station.

I had the pleasure of entertaining at dinner the Chief and all his officers on the night before their departure up river.

Since that time the great explorer and his brave followers, after suffering terrible privations and hardships in their arduous journey through Africa, have rescued and brought back to civilization Emin Pasha. Early on the third morning, Stanley and the Emin Bey relief expedition moved up river, leaving the Equator Station again to its wonted quiet.

At the time I made my first visit up the Malinga the river had overflowed its banks, and we steamed, sometimes hours and hours without seeing a patch of dry land on either bank.
One evening, just at sun-down, turning a point in the river, we espied in the distance a few native huts built on a low-lying shore. As we neared the village we could see that it was entirely deserted, and moreover, there were ghastly evidences of the cause of the desertion. The huts were seven in number, old, dilapidated habitations, built on piles, with a floor just above the water's edge. Placed on sticks in front of them were several whitening skulls. What a tale of suffering these grim and hideous trophies told! Probably but a few months before, the poor natives had been surprised at night by the murderous slave-raiders.

I hoped to find dry land here; but all the region was under water. It was now too dark to go farther, so I anchored for the night, allowing my men to swim to the native huts, shelter themselves under the roofs, and light their fires on the raised platforms. The dwellers in these pile houses, in order that their fires shall not burn their wooden stick flooring, have always a large cake of clay on which to build fires.

There was one of these huts which, by its size, suggested that it was the general Council House of the little settlement. My men crowded into this, and after talking, smoking, and singing far into the night, they rolled themselves in their mats and went to sleep. They had made a large, bright fire, but had not taken the necessary precaution of building it upon clay. The deep silence was rudely broken by mingled screams and groans. I jumped up at the first cry, thinking that perhaps we were attacked. The fire had eaten into the flooring and let my men through into the water. Such an unceremonious waking few had ever experienced. To be suddenly hurled, without the slightest warning, from their cozy sleep to the deep, dark river below, was certainly sufficient excuse for the screams, groans, and yells which rose up from that mass of black figures, floating mats, and sparks.

Among the white officers whom I knew on the Congo, one of the bravest was a young Englishman named Deane. He had spent five years on the Congo, formerly as an officer of the Congo Free State; he had also commanded one of the government Stations on the Kasai. There the natives, taking advantage of his small force, attacked him when he was out in the river and clinging to his canoe, which had been upset by a tornado. His guns had sunk to the bottom, and he had only his knife; but with this he fought so desperately that he succeeded in cutting his way through his enemies, receiving, however, a wound on his leg from the thrust of a barbed fishing-spear.

A few months later he was on his way to Stanley Falls to replace the officer in command of that Station, who had finished his term of service. At nightfall a terrific strom compelled him to seek shelter ashore, as his little boat, the "Royal," loaded with her steel lighter and thirty black Houssa soldiers, could not have lived through the waves. They anchored in the channel, just below the Monongeri villages, a few days from Stanley Falls. As the steamer was very small, Deane slept on shore in a small tent. His men, rolling themselves in their blankets and mats, tried to sleep. Cold and cheerless was it that night, as camp-fires were impossible in such a strom. Suddenly the war of the tempest was drowned in groans of agony and yells of rage. The Monongeri savages, under the cover of the night and storm, had been gathering around the band. So stealthily and silently did they come that the actual attack was the first signal of their presence.

Only a few minutes before, Deane, who was a thorough soldier, had been his rounds to see that the sentries were at their posts; hardly had he returned to his camp-bed when the villianous onslaught began. He himself was severely wounded in the shoulder; and the keen blade of a Monongeri spear pierced his thigh. His cartridges were damp, but he fought manfully, using the butt of his revolver, and a shield which he had wrested from the enemy, holding at bay the fierce warriors, who savagely hurled their spears, but at last were driven to the dark shadows of the forest, by volley after volley fired by the Houssa sentries. In short gasps and feeble tones, Deane rallied his men, and then he fell exhausted to the earth, unconscious. Several of his people had been killed, and many more lay dying from their wounds. Harris, Deane's companion, carried the dead and dying on board the little steamer, and getting up steam
pushed off and anchored in mid-stream. What a night of misery! The groans of the wounded were mocked by the unearthly mirth and drumming which the wind bore to them from the savages gathered thickly on the banks. Early in the morning the boat steamed away, with Deane wounded and half his men massacred. With so small a force, punishment of the Monogeri for this treacherous onslaught was out of the question; so they pushed on up-stream; the natives, emboldened by their victory, came out in large war-canoes, harassing the fugitives until the deadly rifle warned them that there was still danger from that little boat. At last he arrived at Stanley Falls, but so weak was he that all feared he would die. It was decided that he should return to Leopoldville. But a few months elapsed, and again Deane was on his way up river to punish the Monogeri villages and take command of Stanley Falls. With his renewed forces he was able to avenge the death of his men and his own sufferings.

After he had been at Stanley Falls a few months, hostilities broke out between the Station and the Arabs. Deane fought desperately, killing a great number of the Arab slave-raiders and Manyema banditti, until, the ammunition being exhausted, his men, with the exception of three, deserted him. Deane fired the Station and escaped into the forests, where he lived on berries and roots for a month, hunted about by the Arabs who were in search of him.

A few months later, he was again on the Congo, this time to try his fortune in hunting big game. He joined Captain Bailey, and they decided to hunt together the elephants, which abound all through this part of Africa.

They spent a little time at Lukunga, on the lower reaches of the Congo, after which they had some good sport hunting the antelopes and buffaloes on Long Island, in Stanley Pool. But they were impatient to try their guns on the elephants, so they hurried on up-stream. Captain Bailey had a severe attack of fever, and had to return to Europe invalided. So Deane was left to camp alone. Eventually, prompted by reports of the great quantities of game at Lukolela, he shifted his camp to that place, and had been there but a few days when, returning to the Station after a short absence up the Ikelemba river, I heard the sad news that he had been killed by an elephant.

The scene of the tragedy was about one hundred miles down the river, and I decided to leave the next morning and learn full particulars from the people on the spot. My boat was a very slow craft, and it took me two days to get down to Lukolela. Arriving on the second day, I learned the sad details from those at the Station; and the news was graphically confirmed by my old hunter, Bongo Nsanda, who had been three years with me in the hunting-field, and was with poor Deane at the time of his death. I tell the story nearly as I learned it from Bongo Nsanda. He said it was a very wet morning, a day not at all suitable for hunting, being very misty; but Deane was determined to go out. Bongo Nsanda advised him to postpone the hunt, but this he would not consent to do. So getting his few men in a canoe they paddled down the river, and entered a small grass-blocked creek.

Upon arriving there, in a little stretch of open water they heard the breaking down of branches by an elephant— to the hunter's ear an unmistakable sound. Deane gave his orders, and the nose of the canoe was noiselessly brought up to the bank, where there was a little dry land. When the hunter had arrived at this stage of his story, I took two of my men and determined to go over the ground and hear the remainder of the sad story on the spot. Bongo Nsanda, as soon as he landed, seemed to become melancholy in the death-like silence of this wood. They only sounds to be heard were the combined murmuring hums of numberless insects, and the occasional mournful call of the hornbill. When we had walked twenty or thirty yards, Bongo Nsanda arrested my footsteps, and said, "Here, you see, these footmarks were made by the white man. Now, if you will go with me over there, I will show you where the elephant was standing."

I accompanied him. He pointed out to me a long strip of the bark of a tree. Said he, "The elephant was tearing off that bark."

"The white man," added Bongo Nsanda, "took a steady aim; but he must have just missed the right place, as the elephant curled up his trunk, gave one shrill trumpet, and made off into the
bush." Deane and the hunter followed him as quickly as they could, but the wounded animal ran a great distance, and Deane became tired. "He sat down on a log," said Bongo Nsanda, "and told me in a whisper to keep my ears open as the elephant might be within hearing, and at the same time added that I must make no noise. After a few minutes, a sound told him that the elephant was not far away. He held his head low, and his hand to his ear, and listened for about half a minute, when the sound was repeated." Again Bongo Nsanda moved on another thirty or forty yards, and then, suddenly stopping, he said in a whisper, as if the same great danger was still hanging over us, "This is where he stood. He was a brave man; he was not afraid of an elephant or a buffalo, for the elephant was standing in that open space under the trees, and was just filling it up with his head, this way; but Deane boldly crept up within ten yards of him and fired. This time the elephant came down on his knees; but before the smoke had blown away, the elephant rose to his feet, and plunged off in another direction." I again followed Bongo Nsanda's footsteps. The same feeling of awe that was shown by this black hunter took possession of myself also, as we approached near the fatal spot. Bongo Nsanda must have been deeply impressed indeed; for, at every step he took, he looked all around with a hesitating glance, as if expecting that an angry elephant might appear any moment.

At last we came to a little patch of clear ground, perhaps ten or eleven yards square. "Over there," said Bongo Nsanda, "the elephant was standing, swaying his trunk backwards and forwards, and switching his tail in an angry manner." Deane at first got behind a tree near where we stood, opened the breech of his rifle to make sure that he had put in two cartridges, and then boldly left his cover and approached to within seven yards of his game. He raised his rifle and fired his two barrels in quick succession, causing the elephant to stagger. The level of his gun was stiff, and he seemed to be struggling with it trying to open it; but, as it would not work, he threw down his own rifle, and snatched from the hands of his hunter a loaded Snider rifle, aimed, and fired. This was the last shot ever fired by poor Deane, for the elephant made a short, wild rush at him, and killed him on the spot just as he reached his cover.

Upon examining the surrounding forest, I was forcibly impressed by the depredations which this wounded and infuriated eleophant had committed in his anger. He had evidently imagined every thing about him to be an enemy. From some trees the bark had been ripped. He had torn down every branch within his reach, and trampled them beneath his feet; young trees had yielded before his mighty strength— had been uprooted and flung from his path.

I followed the elephant's track for a long distance. At first he had made his way through a forest, and then plunged into a swamp. Here he seems to have rested for a time in the water, and to have regained his strength to some extent; for after this his tracks became firmer and firmer, until, when the tracks had passed right through this swamp and into another forest beyond, there was nothing in them to show that they were those of a wounded elephant. Finding it was hopeless to track him any farther, I returned to the Mission Station at Lukolela. Probably the elephant eventually died of his wounds, but it is surprising how far they will travel after being badly wounded.

Deane, throughout his whole career on the Congo, had shown himself to be a man of undoubted pluck. I admired him, and we were the best of friends. Some time before, on my road up from Kinshasa, I had put in at his camp, when we had spent a very merry day together. But now everything had been taken away from the spot, and there was a sad and somber blank in the place of the vivid scene I had left only a few days earlier.

There seems to be almost a fatality attached to the hunting of wild animals in the district of Lukolela. Poor Keys and Deane met their death in encounters with wild animals at this place. And just before I left the Congo, in '89, another friend, named Thompson, had a narrow escape from becoming a victim to the ferocity of a buffalo.

We were camped below Lukolela, near a large buffalo plain, where just a narrow fringe
of bush ran along the water's edge. At night my watchman came and told me that he heard a buffalo a few yards distant in the plain. I answered, "My experiences with the buffalo do not encourage me to hunt him at night; he is bad enough to deal with in the daytime." But Thompson said, "I'll go, old man! I want to shoot a buffalo!" I remonstrated with him, and tried to convince him of the risk which he was running; but he answered, "It is all right,"— and off he started. It was foolish on my part to have allowed it. He took his gun, loaded it, and started, followed by the fag-end of my crew. There were with him two watchmen, the fireman, two table-boys, a steward, the cook, the boy who looked after the fowls, and one or two other small boys who were employed about the boat. At that time I had command of the larger steamer, the Florida.

Thompson was absent a few minutes when the precipitous retreat of his rear-gurard plainly told me that something was wrong. I then heard a shot, and presently Thompson came walking down to the boat bleeding from a wound on his head. He coolly told me that he had tracked the buffalo, and had even heard him eating grass, but could not see him. Presently the buffalo caught sight of the hunter, and made a wuick rush at him. Thompson, with great presence of mind, threw himself on the ground, and the buffalo passed over his heard. In doing so, the snimal's hoof had tapped him on the head, taking out a piece as big as a five-shilling piece; and, besides, with one of his hind legs he had bruised Thompson's back. It was indeed a narrow escape.

When another opportunity occurs to shoot buffaloes at nine o'clock at night, I am sure Thompson will not unnecessarily volunteer for the honor of being the hunter.

During the latter part of my life on the Congo River, I was living in a small stern-wheel boat, thirty-four feet long by seven feet wide. As two-thirds of the boat were taken up by the machinery and boiler, the small space amidships did not give sufficient room for myself and crew, and I had to tow a large dugout alongside. In this canoe I carried some of my men, with their mats and cooking-pots, two or three goats, some fowls, and last, but not least important, my cooking-apparatus— a small earthenware native bowl in which my cook kept his fire and over which every dish was cooked. My cook was a native boy, named Mochindu, to whom I had imparted, to the best of my ability, the few culinary recipes which I had gathered during my travels. But his position as cook on board my boat was not an enviable one, as he was exposed to all weathers and sometimes had to turn out a dish under the most trying circumstances. The slightest ripple of the water or any movement of the men in the canoe would upset any gastronomic calculation that he might have made. Often he had to fry a fowl or make some kind of stew under a heavy downpour of rain; and the poor little chap had a very dejected appearance as he struggled to hold up an old umbrella to keep the rain from the fire, and at the same time made frantic efforts to save the whole cooking-apparatus from toppling over as the canoe lurched from side to side. When his cooking was all finished and the dishes were passed along to the boat, he always seemed to give a sigh of relief as he stepped out of the canoe and crept into the boat near the boiler to get thoroughly warmed so as to be ready for the next culinary struggle.

I remember that one day he was frying some fowl which he had chopped up into cutlets. We were on the beach of a large village, and were surrounded by natives. A group of these natives, attracted evidently by the savory odor of the cooking, pointed up to something in the boat and asked my little cook what it was. When he turned his head in the direction indicated, one of the fellows made a grab at the pan and, snatching two of the cutlets, bolted off. When Mochindu came to look into the pan, for the purpose of turning over his meat, he connected the hasty retreat of the native with the ominous gap in his frying-pan, picked up his knife and made a rush for the fellow. Then I saw a great struggle going on. Blows were being exchanged, and there was a tussle on the ground; and presently Mochindu returned, holding in his hand the missing cutlets; his face, begrimed with dirt, seemed struggling between sorrow at the mishap and joy at having recovered the booty.


The last steamer voyage I made before leaving for Europe was up the Ruki, a tributary just above the Equator Station. It had always been my wish to visit the people living in these regions, but I would not attempt such an expedition in my small boat, as the ferocity and hostility of these Ba-Ruki were too well known for me to attempt the journey without a faster and more imposing craft. Now that I had command of the bigger boat again, I decided to ascend the Ruki, and hoped to see the natives about whose warlike abilities and cannibalistic qualities I had heard so many tales.

I left the Equator Station early one morning with a cargo of merchandise and trinkets, with which I hoped to overcome, if possible, the prejudices of the terrible Ba-Ruki. I was warned by the natives around our settlement what I was to expect from my present venture; but I was accompanied by an English engineer, named Davy, upon whom I could rely in helping us to give a good account of ourselves if any serious trouble rose. And besides, the same crew, in charge of my trusty Bienego, that accompanied me through my little Oubangi difficulties were now abroad, and had proved by their former conduct their pluck and devotion.

After five hours' steaming up the river, at the invitation of the natives ashore I put in to their beach, and exchanges beads and cowries for fresh eggs and fowls. These people I found very friendly; they had been down in their canoes as far as my Station, so knew that they had nothing to fear. In this village, Nkole, we saw but few knives and spears, but all were armed with bows and arrows. They were very friendly toward us, but exceedingly scared at all our strange actions. We had a harmony steam-whistle on board which alarmed them a great deal. Just before leaving their beach, on my continuing the voyage, I called my men together by blowing the whistle. The poor natives of Nkole, superstitious as all savages are, thought it was some angry spirit who was kept by me to terrify people, and who gave vent to his feelings in this way. The natives on the beach, at this unusual sound, beat a hasty retreat, and those in their canoes lost all presence of mind. Some jumped into the river; others jumped into their canoes; and we steamed away leaving in our wake a mass of upturned canoes and struggling figures, while on shore the beach was deserted, and from behind every tree black faces grinned in safety at their less fortunate friends in the water.

After an hour's steaming above this settlement we were beyond the district of the friendly people. To all my offers to buy their goats, fowls, or ivory, in exchange for beads, cowries, knives, and cloth, the natives in the villages we passed responded by such a plentiful supply of sticks, stones, and village refuse that I decided that I should have to seek a more rational people to receive my beads and cowries. So I steamed up past this line of villages, which were built on a high bank and seemed to be very thickly populated.

Before long I was compelled to meet more serious attacks. At one large village, crowds of people lined the beach and invited us to approach; but, when we turned the boat in their direction, they fired a flight of arrows at us, then ran and hid among the thick bushes which grew at the water's edge. From here, in comparative security, they kept up their fire. Their beach was too rocky to admit of my taking the boat right in-shore; so, firing a few volleys into their hiding places, we manned our large dugout and paddled toward the beach. We landed and routed them out of their village. Then, throwing our skirmishing sharpshooters at the limits of the settlement, I completed the punishment by ordering the huts to be destroyed by fire.

On my way back I made friends with these people; it is a good trait in the character of these natives that they know when they meet their master, and they bear no malice.

For the few hours' steaming above the spot where this engagement took place we met with no opposition. The inhabitants had sensibly taken warning from the result of their neighbors' arrogant behavior. But, in the afternoon, when we arrived at villages where news of the fight had not preceded our arrival, we had to contend with the same difficulties again. I could easily have avoided the arrows by keeping out in the middle of the stream and steaming away; but my object was to make friends, and to learn something of the people and the commercial possibilities of their country.


In the middle of '89, I came down to Leopoldville in my steamer and there left the rier and returned down to the coast by the caravan- [illustration - "We landed and routed them out of their village." (See page 848.)] route. While waiting for the native porters who were to carry my baggage to the coast, I occupied my leisure time in making short hunting excursions in the neighborhood of Stanley Pool.

An old friend of mine on the Congo, Captain Bailey, who has killed elephants and hunted the lion near the head waters of the Zambesi, had a thrilling experience and a very narrow escape from a buffalo on Long Island, in Stanley Pool; and had it not been for the plucky conduct of his little terrier he would undoubtedly have lost his life. He had tracked a buffalo out of the swamps, had dropped his game and thought it was dead, as it lay quite motionless. But upon his coming closer, it sprang upon its feet and charged him. He had only time to fire, but without taking good aim; so he hit a little too low on the forehead and the animal was not stopped. Captain Bailey barely escaped the buffalo by swinging himself to one side— the animal, in charging past, actually grazing his side. Finding it had missed its mark, the brute wheeled sharply about again; but the hunter had also turned about and bolted for a tree which was at hand. He reached it only just in time. The buffalo, making a furious charge, came full tilt against the tree, and knocked off a big piece of bark. Although the captain had succeeded in getting behind the tree, he had no time to spare.

Even then the brute would not give up the chase, but made a [illustration - Head of African buffalo.] rush around the tree. At this moment, the brave little fox-terrier, "Nep," sprang at the huge beast's neck; and, although thrown off, still continued to harass the angry bull, thereby distracting its attention from master to dog, and giving the hunter time to put another cartridge into his rifle, and with another shot to drop his game.

All hunters of big game expect to meet occasionally with animals who will show their disapproval
of being shot at by a rush. But Captain Bailey's experience with the buffalo on Long Island is the narrowest escape of which I know.

[illustration - Mr. Glave's steamer on the Congo.]

At the season of the year in which I was traveling the grass was in seed; and as I passed through the country on my way down to the coast I became painfully aware of the prickly nature of this grass. It penetrated my shirt, and made me feel as if the shirt was made of some material much like the exterior of the barrel of a musical box. The prickly pieces covering the outside made the wearer of the shirt resemble one of the porcupine species.

The Ant family are well represented in Central Africa, and there are three with which the traveler is oftenest brought in contact: the white-ant, the driver-ant, and the red-ant. The last is found on shrubs in the forests, and if you brush against a branch on which these insects live, you will become painfully aware of the reason why the Zanzibari call this pest matimoto(hot water), for its bite resembles a burn from scalding water. The dwarfs who during his last expedition gave Mr. Stanley so much trouble around Lake Albert, poisoned their arrows with crushed red-ants.

Another very annoying member of the ant race is the dark-brown driver. These ants crawl along the ground in a dark mass, twelve inches wide and several yards long, composed of many hundred thousands of individuals. They move slowly along like a great army, occasionally stopping to devour whatever animal-food they may meet in their path.

I have often been visited by these unwelcome guests at night. On such occasions the contents of my larder would form a meal for them; and if my mosquito-net was not properly tucked in so as to exclude such intruders, I would be overrun with them, and would have to beat a precipitate retreat until they had ransacked my establishment to their satisfaction. This has happened several times to me. The bite of the driver-ant is very painful, for the insect is provided with large pincers with which he digs deep into the flesh of an enemy.

The white-ant makes itself an equally unwelcome visitor by eating away all woodwork, leather, or cloth which it can find. A wooden case, if exposed to the attacks of this insect for two or three days, will have the bottom of it eaten away; and a pair of boots, if left at the
mercy of this pest, will be made utterly worthless in a few days.

Large clay mounds, sometimes reaching to thirty feet in height, mark the house and store-houses of the white-ant.

These mounds are of cellular formation, and contain their store of grubs. So large and solid are these ant-hills that at one of our Stations we leveled the top of an ant-hill and built a sentry post upon it.

Nature has bestowed upon the African a rich gift in the palm-tree. Its branches form a canopy to shelter the village huts from the noon-day sun; with its leaves the houses are thatched; and the Congo kitchen would be devoid of its chief means of flavor and delicacy if deprived of the mbila, or palm fruit. And it plays an even more important part. Its juice, as malafu, cheers the hunter on his return from the chase, is partaken of at every tribal ceremony, and provides a sparkling nectar for the otherwise insipid African banquet. It is obtained by [illustration - Ant hill, made by white-ants.] tapping the tree at its very top. Holes are bored to the heart of the palm-tree, and gourds are attached. Into these the juice flows, and the gourds are collected by the natives, who climb up the trunk of the tree by means of a band of leather or cane which encircles climber and tree. By this ingenious device the native is kept from falling, and can ascend the trees with great [illustration - Collecting palm-tree juice.] rapidity. Using the rough projections of the bark as steps they lean back and mount higher and higher, at the same time lifting with a jerky motion the band that holds them to the tree.

This malafu, or palm wine, resembles in color milky water, is of a sweet acidulated flavor, and when not too old is exceedingly refreshing and palatable; but in a few days it becomes sour, and is then very intoxicating.

My carriers were at last ready, and I was now fairly started on my way to the coast. I have tried all available methods of locomotion on land in Africa, and I have come to the conclusion that walking is the most satisfactory. The hammock is sometimes used; this article of porterage is a piece of canvas looped up on a long pole, wherein the traveler lies and is carried
by the blacks, one being at each end of the pole; but the small bridle-path of the caravan-route is at places so stony and ragged that falls often occur by the carriers stumbling, and bruises are the result. A few donkeys are sometimes seen on the Congo, but unless you get a really good animal you have no end of trouble. The ordinary beast becomes affected by the climate, and requires a great amount of encouragement and assistance. As a rule, you must have one man to pull him, another to push him, and when he is very tired you may require the assistance of two others to prevent his falling. Taking all drawbacks into consideration, I prefer to walk.

It was in this way that my six years of wandering were brought to a close. I had left home a raw lad, and I returned feeling quite an old and hardened traveler. Something more than the interval of time separated me from those early days. My thoughts and habits had been molded by the experiences through which I had passed. My interests and sympathies were centered in the land I had left and I felt almost a stranger among my own people.

I missed for some time the wild tropical scenery, the shouting negroes, and the hundred sounds and sights of savage life.

If Africa had seemed strange to me six years before, my own country was now as unfamiliar. I have left many a dear friend and comrade on the banks of the great river in lonely Stations in the far interior; and in my heart there is still a warm corner for the poor savage, who has often been my sole companion in the Wilds of Central Africa.

The End.

[illustration - Mr. E. J. Glave. (Drawn from life by Frederic Villiers.)]