Page:Dictionary of National Biography, Second Supplement, volume 3.djvu/396

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Stanley
Stanley
386

Travels and Adventures in America and Asia' (London, 1895). Through his contributions to the 'Democrat' and other newspapers, he was able to make ninety dollars a week in addition to his expenses; and 'by economy and hard work' he had saved at the beginning of 1868 six hundred pounds. Hearing of the British expedition to Abyssinia, he threw up his engagement with the Missouri journal, went to New York, and offered his services to the 'Herald,' which gave him a commission as its correspondent for the campaign. He accompanied Sir Robert (Lord) Napier's column in the long and difficult march to Magdala, and described the operations and the entry of the British troops into King Theodore's capital in animated despatches. The campaign established his reputation as a graphic writer and an exceptionally able and energetic journalist. By a smart piece of enterprise he outpaced all his competitors as well as the official despatch-writers, so that London first heard the news of the fall of Magdala through the telegrams of the 'New York Herald.' Stanley was now a man of mark, and was recognised as one of the foremost newspaper correspondents of the time.

His ambition rose to higher things. 'I was not sent into the world,' he wrote long afterwards in his autobiography, 'to be happy or to search for happiness. I was sent for a special work.' He had a premonition that the work was concerned with travel and exploration in Asia or Africa, and he was preparing himself for it by the study of history and geographical literature. His Abyssinian letters are those of the student as well as the adventurer. He had further opportunities of enlarging his knowledge and experience. After the Abyssinian war he wandered about the Mediterranean islands, sending interesting letters from Crete and elsewhere to the 'Herald.' Then he went to Spain, where he saw more fighting, and described the flight of Queen Isabella, and the republican rising of 1869.

It was in October of that year that his great opportunity came. Dr. David Livingstone [q. v.]. the famous Scottish missionary and explorer, was lost somewhere in the Lake Tanganyika region, and England and America were interested in his fate. In November 1868 Stanley had been requested by Mr. Gordon Bennett, the proprietor of the 'New York Herald,' to interrupt his Spanish tour in order to go to Egypt and meet Livingstone, who was supposed to be returning down the Nile. He went to Aden and spent ten weeks there, corresponding with the consul at Zanzibar ; but no tidings could be gathered of the missionary, and Stanley was sent back to Spain. He was at Madrid in the autumn of the following year when he received a hasty summons to Paris to meet Bennett, who gave him instructions to 'find Livingstone,' wherever he might be. Stanley was to make such arrangements as he thought fit and to be supplied with all the funds he would require. The commission was accepted without a moment's hesitation, and Stanley set to work to carry it out the next day, 17 Oct. 1869. But Mr. Bennett required him to undertake a number of other important missions before entering upon the search for Livingstone. The first was to describe the series of imposing fetes and ceremonies with which the opening of the Suez Canal was celebrated.' Afterwards he went up the Nile and wrote of the scenery and antiquities of Egypt with a growing breadth of knowledge and outlook. Then he was at Jerusalem looking on at Sir Charles Warren's explorations of the underground passages and conduits, and writing with enthusiasm and interest of Biblical topography. From Palestine he passed to Constantinople and began a long journey to the Caucasus, Batoum, Tiflis, Baku, and Resht, and over the Persian table-land through Teheran and Shiraz to Bushire, where he took ship for Bombay. Thus it was not till 6 Jan. 1871 that he reached Zanzibar and was able to begin organising his expedition into the interior of Africa.

He left Bagamoyo on 21 March with a 'compact little force' of three whites, thirty-one armed Zanzibaris, 153 porters, and twenty-nine pack-animals and riding horses. The objective of the journey was Lake Tanganyika, as it was understood that Livingstone was somewhere near the borders of that inland sea. The march was long and arduous. Passing through the Unyam-wezi country, Stanley came to the Arab colony of Unyanyembe, where he imprudently took part in the war between the Arabs and the powerful chief Mirambo and suffered considerable losses both of men and stores. He was compelled to turn southward, and at one time was reduced to so much distress through the disorganisation of his caravan and the exactions of native chiefs that he had thoughts of returning to the coast. News of a white man on the lake shore encouraged him to go forward, and on 10 Nov. 1871 he arrived at Ujiji. Livingstone had reached this