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4

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO

MACMILLAN AND
LONDON
.
.

CO., LIMITED

BOMBAY CALCUTTA MELBOURNE
BOSTON CHICAGO SAN FRANCISCO
.

THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
NEW YORK
ATLANTA
.
,

THE MACMILLAN

CO. OF CANADA, LTD. TORONTO

IIKADS OF EIGHT LIONS SHOT BY THE AUTHOR IN BRITISH HAST AFRICA. .

. D. LIMITED MARTIN'S STREET.O. PATTERSON. CO. WITH A FOREWORD BY FREDERICK COURTENEY SELOUS Wl TH ILL USTRA TION^ MACMILLAN AND ST. J. LONDON 1907 .-COL. H.S.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO AND Other ast African Adventures BY LIEUT.

November and December.. SUFFOLK. E.RICHARD CLAY AND SONS. First Edition. AND BUNGAY. October. 1907. 1907. Reprinted. BREAD STREET HILL.G. . LIMITED..

PREFACE IT I is with feelings of the greatest diffidence that . have no doubt that many of my readers. the conditions prevailing in British East Africa were very different from what they are to-day. that wise. place the following pages before the public but those of my friends who happen to have heard of have so my rather unique experiences in the wilds often urged that after me to write an account of I my adventures. determined to much hesitation at last do I so. The railway. I have toned down and have endeavoured to write a perfectly plain and straightforward account of things as they must be remembered that at the time these actually happened. who have perhaps never been very far away from civilisation. which has modernised the aspect . will be inclined to think that some of the can only assure them the facts rather than otherI incidents are exaggerated. It events occurred.

away from the simple account of two years' work and play or help the wilds should prove of any interest. Mr. which he has been good enough J. August. was then only in process of construction. 1907. am much Sir indebted to the Hon. in even a small way to call attention to the beautiful and valuable country which we possess on the Equator.I. . Mrs. My reproduce photographs taken by warmest thanks are also due to that to veteran pioneer of Africa. E. H. J. and the country through which it was being state. Cyril Ward.viii PREFACE of the place and brought civilisation in its train. Mr. as indeed. built was still in its primitive savage railway. allowing Rawson for their kindness in me them. I shall feel more than compensated for the trouble I I have taken in writing it. T. If this in it still is.C.. P. for book so kindly an introduction " " is Foreword provided by the to write. giving my little to the public as F. C. K. C. Spooner and Mr. Guilford Molesworth. Selous.

supported only by four rickety poles. Patterson. then an engineer engaged on the construction of the Uganda Railway. Fortunately he did not lose his nerve. approached him from behind. in the pages of The Field newspaper. and sucin ceeded shooting the lion. a by Col. brief account written My me at own long experience once that every word of African hunting told in this thrilling : narrative was absolutely true. Nay more I knew that the author had told his story in a most modest manner. J.FOREWORD IT first was some seven or eight years ago that I read. point of springing But had I lion it would pro- . especially on that to try light one occasion when whilst watching from a very scaffolding. of the Tsavo man-eating lions. just when think it was on the this upon him. H. he was himself stalked by one of the dread beasts. laying but little stress on the dangers he had run when sitting up at nights death of the terrible and compass the man-eaters.

have ever heard or read equals in I sustained lion story its long- and dramatic as interest the story of the Tsavo man-eaters lion story terrible is told by Col. Patterson was watching on that night of terrors. and he was so deeply as he is in all true stories interested in the story of the nature that he and characteristics of wild animals to send him the short printed This I did account as published in The Field. and hours of one night eaters is which occupied but a few but the tale of the Tsavo manterrible tragedies spread out an epic of over several months. A usually a tale of adventures. for in of three trees Col. Patterson. But no have put some on record myself. . Patterson to its long list my own experience I have known instances of men having been pulled from huts built or on platforms at a greater height from the ground than the crazy structure on which Col. was some years after I read the first account published of the Tsavo man-eaters that I made the It I told him acquaintance of President Roosevelt. often very pathetic. begged me . lion I innumerable have been told and written. and only at last brought to an end by the resource and determination of one man. . all I remembered about it.FOREWORD bably have added of victims. From stories the time of Herodotus until to-day.

" it should not be preserved in perWell. probable that the chapters recounting the story of the Tsavo man-eating lions will be found more absorbing than the other portions of Col. tact and determination he mutiny which showed in quelling the formidable once broke out amongst his native Indian workers. is most remarkable It is account of which it we have any record. . described the those two you sent me. Finally. displayed in attacking. President RooseI wrote think that the incident in of the Uganda man-eating articles lions. The in account given all by Col. a great pity that manent form. It is Patterson's book . but I think that most of his is readers will agree with full me that the whole volume of interest and information. single-handed. I am now glad to think that in will be preserved to permanent form Patterson the that . let me say that I have spent the best. referring to this story. lions.FOREWORD and it xi was only " : in the last letter I received from him velt that. rhinoceroses and other dangerous animals was sur- passed by the pluck. difficulties Patterson of how he overcame the which confronted him building a strong and permanent railway bridge across the Tsavo river makes excellent reading whilst the courage he . and I venture assure will Col. President Roosevelt be amongst most interested readers of his book.

September 18. SELOUS. . and I can assure him that the time passed like magic. WORPLESDON.xii FOREWORD part of two nights reading the proof-sheets of Col. C. F. SURREY. Patterson's book. 1907. My interest was held from the first page to the last. for I felt that every word I read was true.

UILDING OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE IV 41 CHAPTER V TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN 5O CHAPTER THE REIGN OF TERROR VI 6l CHAPTER VII 75 THE DISTRICT OFFICER'S NARROW ESCAPE CHAPTER VIII 84 THE DEATH OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER .CONTENTS CHAPTER MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO I I'AflE I CHAPTER II THE FIRST APPEARANCE OF THE MAN-EATERS 2O CHAPTER THE ATTACK ON THE COODS-WAGON III 2Q CHAPTER THE P.

107 CHAPTER THK SNVAHILI XI II~ AND OTHKR NATIVK TRIP. . THK DKVIII OF I HI' SECOND M \N-KATKK .KS CHAPTER A NICIIT XII 131 AFTKK HIPPO CHAPTER A DAY XIII 143 ON THK N'hfNCr K>( AK I'M KNT CHAPTER XIV THK FINDING OF THK MAN-KATKRS' DKN 153 CHAPTER XV UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS 1 66 CHAPTER XVI A WIDOW'S STORY 174 CHAPTER AN INI-VKIATKD RHIN'o XVII l8o CHAPTER LIONS "IN Till' XVII 1 ATIII PLAINS 190 CHAPTER XIX I Hi: -IUKKKN CARAVAN 2OJ CHAPTER XX A DAY ON THK ATM I RIVER 2lS CHAPTER XXI THK MASAI AND OTHKR TRI1!K> 228 .xiv CONTENTS HAPTER IX PAGB . ()4 CHAPTER X THE COMPLETION OF THK T>AY(> KR1DUK .

AT NAIROBI ' 289 CHAPTER XXVII THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND 296 APPENDIX 3'7 .CONTENTS CHAPTER HOW ROSHAN KUAN >AVH> MY LIFE xv XXII HAGE 243 CHAPTER A SUCCESSFUL LION XXIII 260 HUNT CHAPTER XXIV BHOOTA'S LAST SH/KAK 269 CHAPTER XXV A MAN-EATER IN A RAILWAY CARRIAGE 282 CHAPTER XXVI WORK.

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23 29 We shared a hut of palm leaves and boughs of the " " 30 " The camps workmen had also been surrounded by 31 . . from the Harbour The Native Quarter.. "The " I to get there was \^ gharri" " 6 7 pitched my " is tent under some shady palms " " Jesus Fort Kilindini 8 .... .LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS Heads of Africa eight Lions shot by the Author in British East Frontispiece I Mombasa.. .. thorn fences " Railhead Camp. with occasionally a friend 43 . 18 of Uganda The Tent from which jemadar Ungan Singh was " " My own tent was pitched in an open clearing " Women 19 carried off . with its two or three thousand workmen" " The two wounded coolies were left where they lay. 10 it " " " " " The Place of A lucky I shot bird " " 14 15 17 " slept that night in a little palm hut This interminable nyika''' The river crossed by means of a temporary bridge . a piece of torn tent having fallen over 33 them " 35 "A luncheon served to share " it in the wilds... Mombasa " 2 3 5 Well-wooded best hills Yasco da Gama way and slopes of the mainland " Street and Pillar .. on the opposite side of the island" " Deep Waters brought down the huge . .

... Mabruki ... ... " " stones were The into He measured heavy swung its position " " 108 109 " " " The And girder was run over finally exact place lowered gently into position I . . and stood three feet eleven and a half inches high "The bridge over the Tsavo rapidly neared completion" ..xviii LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS I'AGE " very soon became a great pet " Heera Singh made a wild spring into the water to get clear It " 46 of the falling stone " " 47 " The door which was to admit the lion "When the trap was ready. 121 123 We arrived at M'Gogo's capital " in the 124 Making pombe hollowed-out stump of a tree" .. I pitched a tent over it" " They found him stuck fast in the bushes of the l>oma 62 64 . 109 first Very soon had the satisfaction of seeing the train cross the finished work" the Flood 110 1 1 1 The completed Tsavo Bridge One of the Trolley Lines after 112 Swahili Caravan Porters " The old caravan road which crossed the " " 118 Tsavo at a ford " . 125 Wa Taita Men M'Kamba Woman " 127 129 134 136 Until it joins the Athi River" "The banks of the Sabaki are lined with trees" . 119 120 Such was my ... cook. 70 " Perched on the top of water-tanks " 73 77 " I took up my position in a crib made of sleepers" Whitehead on a Trolley at the exact spot where the Lion jumped upon him Abdullah and his two Wives 79 80 83 A " party of Wa Jamousi His length from tip of nose to eight inches" tip of tail was nine feet 92 Head "The " of the " first Man-Eater I 93 following evening took up my position in this same 99 102 107 tree nine feet six inches from tip of nose to tip " of tail. " " " ' The women The women wear a long.. . brightly-coloured cloth themselves only in " attire a short kilt " ..

. with Collabus Monkey N'derobbo Girl . . . 241 277 . which bowled the antelope over stone-dead" managed to bring them " . 198 211 215 Wart-hog " 217 A successful snapshot of an A Masai Chief Masai Warriors Masai Masai impala just after it had been shot " 225 229 231 Woman Women 232 233 Masai Girls N'derobbo Boy N'derobbo Boy.. Slaves chained neck to neck as was the custom" 172 Hospital Tent at Voi where Mrs. .. 234 235 236 237 Wa Kikuyu Wa Wikuyu " " 239 240 of the The women " Kikuyu carry the heavy loads Din" Spooner's plucky servant.. Imam Wa . the man-eaters' den " ! 1 56 "\Vatchtheanimalscomedowntodrink" " The antelope swinging by his feet " Hippo Head " 159 163 165 .. O'Hara rested In the Bazaar at Kampala " The great Athi Plains " " " First the earth surface has to be prepared " Cuttings have to be made and hollows banked 176 179 180 182 up" 183 185 "Another gang drops the " " It rails in their places" never moved again well " " 188 The trophy was it worth the pains I had taken to add 189 191 to my collection Jackson's Hartebeeste and Zebra Waterbuck " 192 fell Fortunately the brute dead in after this final effort " " We I " triumph to the camp got near enough for a safe shot.....LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS " I xix caught sight of a him over" fine waterbuck and successfully bowled 144 close to " A young one was lying down quite all me " 145 151 A " Crocodile on the Sabaki Beyond doubt.

He was I kept on view for several days. 294 295 Steamer unloading at Kisumu. . 291 . . War Canoe View on Lake Victoria Nyanza. . near the Ripon Falls 319 Preparing Breakfast in Camp in the Kenya Province flying visit in a in 320 324 325 " "A " rickshaw to Kampala'' Clad long flowing cotton garments 326 327 Jinja " " Rushing over the Ripon Falls" 328 The mighty river stretching . "The Place of Falling Oryx Roan Antelope " 299 An excellent. oryx pattersonitinits 313 316 . . away to the north amid en- chanting scenery" \Va Kikuyu Warriors 329 338 Map of British East Africa 339 .xx LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS PAGE A " Collection of Trophies 281 " . . 296 297 298 Shimone. ... and then shot . . on Lake Victoria N van/a . . took a photograph of him standing beside his fine trophy" " Succeeded in finishing him off without further trouble" .. named Landaalu " . 300 301 Crossing a Stream on the Cook's Box Crossing the Angarua River 303 305 Reedbuck The New Eland Thomson's Gazelle T. 287 Impala " 288 . The Grand Falls. . . cheery fellow . Tana River Water" (Eldama Ravine) .

every B - . was much struck with the which gradually opened strange beauty of the view Contrary to my anticipation. FROM THE HARBOUR. which forms the harbour and as our vessel steamed slowly in.MOMBASA. 1898. out before me. quaint old Portuguese fortress 1 built over three hundred years ago. close under the . THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAPTER I MY ARRIVAL AT TSAYO IT first was towards noon on March i. that I found myself entering the narrow and somewhat dangerous harbour of Mombasa. separated from the mainland only by a very narrow channel. on the east coast of Africa. The town lies on an island of the same name.

to me.>r. MOM1SASA. and an oriental glamour of enchantment seemed to hang over the island. The old town was bathed in brilliant sunthing shine and reflected its itself lazily on the motionless sea. and the and slopes on the mainland formed a very effective setting to a beautiful and. huge baobabs and spreading mango darker background of well-wooded trees hills . dreamily between waving palms and lofty cocoanuts. flat roofs and dazzlingly white walls peeped out THK NAIIVK (.\KTI-:K. believe. even at the . in plentifully sprinkled with I Arab some of which. The harbour was dhows. unexpected picture. and green.2 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO looked fresh CHAP.

Ocean. I remember once coming terrible across a dhow becalmed its in the middle of the Indian distress. men on board. There were . It has always been a the navigators of matter of great wonder to these little me how vessels find their way from to port to port. a few slaves are occasionally smuggled off to Persia and Arabia. and how they manage weather the "\VEU. storms that at certain seasons of the year suddenly visit eastern seas. and crew making signals of our captain slowed four down all to investigate. nearly dead from thirst they had been without drink of any kind for several days B 2 . without the aid of either compass or sextant. as they do.-\VOODED HILLS AND SLOPES ON THE MAINLAND.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO present day.

I remembered was at this very place that in 1498 the great Vasco da Gama nearly lost his ship and life through to the treachery of his Arab pilot. who plotted wreck the vessel on the reef which bars more than half the entrance to the harbour. giving them some casks of water. leaving them still becalmed midst of that glassy sea. and our vessel resumed in the its journey. and have sacked the town but for the timely In submission and apologies of the Sultan. Whether they managed to reach their destination I never knew. this time. in Luckily. commemoration of if Scarcely had the anchor been dropped. As our steamer made its way to its anchorage. After completely lost their bearings. the romantic surroundings of the harbour of Mombasa conjured up visions of stirring adventures of the past. when. which as a boy that it it had been my delight to read. nefarious design was discovered and the bold navigator also w ould r promptly hanged the pilot. and recalled to my mind the many tales of reckless doings of pirates and slavers.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO and had CHAP. our vessel was surrounded by a fleet . principal street the of Mombasa Street appropriately called still Vasco da Gama there is stands a curiously-shaped pillar which said to have been erected by this great seaman in his visit. as by magic. we directed them to Muscat (the port they wished to make).

fight between some rival Swahili boatmen for my luggage and person. my object in coming out to East Africa at this time was to take up a position to which I had been appointed by the Foreign Office staff of on the construction the Uganda Railway. encounter. therefore. I found myself being vigorously rowed to the foot of the landing steps by the bahareen (sailors) who had been successful in the VASCO DA GAMA STREET AND PILLAR.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO " " of small boats and dug-outs manned by crowds After a short of shouting and gesticulating natives. and . Now. officials from one of the Customs quarters of the railway were to be found. enquired where the headI As soon as I landed.

with town lay for the . WAS BY gharri. was by gharri. baobab. on the other side of the The best way to get there. . . were at a place called Kilindini. through the principal street of the Accordingly." which are town. laid which are pushed by two strapping Swahili boys. I secured one of these vehicles. I was further informed. banana and palm here and there brilliantly-coloured trees. some island.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO was told that they CHAP. which once outside the most part through dense groves of mango. having two seats placed back to back under a little canopy and running on narrow rails "THE BEST WAY TO GET THERE . which I found to be a small trolley. and was soon flying down the track. three miles away.

discovery of ancient . Meanwhile I " I PITCHED MY TEXT UNDER SOME SHADY PALMS. itself It is naturally occupied most of my supposed to have been founded but the about A." pitched my line.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO creepers hanging in luxuriant festoons from the branches. tent under some shady palms near the gharri and busied myself in exploring the island and in procuring the stores and the outfit necessary The town of for a lengthy sojourn up-country. I made my way to the Railway Offices and was informed that I should be stationed inland and should receive further instructions in the course of a day or two.D. 1000. Mombasa attention. On arrival at Kilindini.

The Portuguese occupation . of a still older stronghold.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. it civilisations. and of coins of the early Persian and Chinese dynasties. rovers piously named it These enterprising sea"Jesus Fort. goes to show that it must at different ages have been settled by people of the very earliest times. from 1505 to 1729 by a permanent memorial of whose "JESUS FORT." and an is still inscription recording this to be seen over the of main entrance. it is believed." occupation remains fortress. built in the shape of the grim old about 1593 on the site. Coming off to more modern was held on and the Portuguese. Egyptian idols.

After this the Portuguese made attempts to reconquer Mombasa. to which they had been forced to retire. 1696. to regain their lost supremacy. until last December 12. the town was besieged for thirty-three consecutive months by a large fleet of Arab dhows. determined attack and captured the It putting the remnant of the defenders. when the town was stormed and captured by General Sampayo. which in 1888 was formed . is pathetic to read that fleet only two days later a large Portuguese off the harbour. bringing the long-looked-for rein- forcements. how- overwhelming and again drove the Portuguese out and numbers. the little garrison held out valiantly in Jesus Fort. remain in nominal possession of to the present Mombasa day . however. to the sword. sur- rounded the In spite of plague. but in 1887 Seyid Bargash. the then Sultan of Zanzibar. not without its vicissitudes. which completely island.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO Mombasa was. as represented by the Sultan of Zanzibar. they did not succeed. 1698. returned the next year ever. when the Arabs made a citadel. From March 15. treachery and famine. The Arabs. gave for an annual rental a concession of his mainland territories to the British East Africa Association. but were unsuc- cessful until 1728. The in Arabs. although the latter made one more attempt in 1769 . for example. both men and appeared several women.

Mombasa . East Africa Company. ever.. when a Swahili chief named M'baruk bin Rashed. who had three times previously risen in rebellion against the Sultan of Zanzibar." so recently as 1895-6. In 1895 the Foreign Office took over control of the Company's possessions. ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE OK THE ISLAND. The last serious fighting on the island took place "KILINDIM is . attempted to defy the British and to throw off their He was defeated on several occasions. Altogether.. and a Protectorate was into the Imperial British and ten years later the administration of the country was transferred to the Colonial Office. howyoke. and was finally forced to flee southwards into has in German territory. proclaimed .IO THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP.

and as name " the place of deep waters" implies. on the opposite side of the island. it does a large forwarding trade with the "THE PLACE OF DEEP WATERS. it is rapidly becoming a thriving for and prosperous town. may Kilindini is. readily be obtained. but under the settled now obtaining. from a needle to an anchor. and as the port of entry Uganda." interior and has several excellent stores where almost anything. has a much finer harbour than The channel between that possessed by Mombasa. or "Isle of rule War". as I have its said.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO the past well deserved its ii native name of Kisiwa M'vita. .

Kilindini has now really become the principal port. Anderson.12 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO island CHAP. being always used by the liners and heavier vessels. and as the jetty is directly connected with the Uganda Railway. daylight I accordingly started at next morning in a special train with Mr. as the country was in every way new is to me. when one morning I was delighted to receive an official letter instructing me to proceed to Tsavo. about one hundred and thirty-two miles from the charge of the construction of the section of the line at that place. McCulloch. the Superintendent of Works.like beautifully wooded. land. the and the mainland is here capable of giving commodious and safe anchorage to the very largest vessels. called the Salisbury Bridge. and was becoming very anxious to get my marching orders. I found the journey a most interesting one. and to take been reached by railhead. The island of Mombasa separated from the mainland by the Strait of Macupa. and on . in honour of the great Minister for Foreign Affairs under whose direction the Uganda Railway scheme was underafter reaching the taken. and Dr. For twenty miles our train main- wound steadily . park upwards through country. I had spent nearly a week in Mombasa. the principal Medical Officer and . and the railway crosses this by a bridge about three-quarters of a mile long. which had just then coast.

however. McCulloch having a race with us. was to secure the For a time the ." but almost the only difference to be noticed in the character of the country was that the colour of the dust had changed. and carpeted in the dry season with a layer of fine red dust. This its dust is of a most penetrating character. We managed. As our \ve train sped onwards through the level uplands ostrich striding along parallel with saw a line. Wa Nyika. we entered on the expanse of the Taru Desert.i MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO 13 looking back out of the carriage windows we could every now and again obtain lovely views of Mombasa and Kilindini. however. but the animals are very difficult to see owing to the thick undergrowth in which they hide themselves. we came to the end of this "desert. and also noticed some of the natives. the next and greater difficulty." At Maungu. prize. at once seized his rifle and by a lucky shot brought the as down the huge bird . or "children of the wilderness. From here onward game more or less plentiful. the to catch sight of a few from the carriage windows. while beyond these the Indian Ocean sparkled in the glorious sunshine as far as the eye could see. The summit of the Rabai Hills having been reached. some eighty miles from the coast. a wilderness covered with poor scrub and stunted trees. and finds the carriage as is way into everything in the train passes along. fine if Dr.

about a hundred this miles from the coast.14 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO signals CHAP. engine-driver took no notice of our shouts. and had exert our strength to drag it on board the train. resuming our journey. "A LUCKY SHOT BROUGHT DOWN THE HUGE BIRD. was shunted back to where be the ostrich We found it to to an all exceptionally fine specimen." Soon after this we reached Voi. and we succeeded in attracting his and the had train fallen. but at last attention. we had come we made a short halt in order to inspect some construction work which was On going on. we soon discovered that a pleasant change had occurred in the character of . and as was the most yet important station on the line that to.

we arrived at our destination. as every now and again we stopped . Here our journey was slow. the dwelling- " I SLEPT THAT NIGHT IN A LITTLE PALM HUT. Tsavo. To the south of us could be seen the N'dii range of mountains. From a place called N'dii. the railway runs for wooded country. to inspect the permanent works in progress but eventually." place of the Wa Taita people.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO the landscape. while on our right rose the rigid brow of the N'dungu Escarpment. I slept that night in a . some miles through a beautifully which looked all the more inviting after the deadly monotony of the wilderness through which we had just passed. towards dusk. which stretches away westwards for scores of miles.

seeking I should have slept so peacefully shelter.16 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. I found that the whole r . country as far as could see was covered with low " stunted trees. or wilderness of whitish and leafless dwarf trees. I could see the stars I twinkling through little knew then neighbouro that what adventures awaited me in this hood time . eager to make acquaintance with my new surroundings. Away to the north-east . indeed. not even possessing a door. and as lay on my narrow camp bed the roof. jungle. was rather broken-down and I dilapidated. and two if I had realised that brutes at very savage were prowling I round. presented a ghastly and sun- and here and there a ridge of dark-red heat-blistered rock jutted out above the stricken appearance . thick undergrowth and thorns. little palm hut which had been built by some previous traveller. wait-a-bit " The only clearing. hardly think in my rickety Next morning I was up betimes. My first impression on coming out of my hut was that I was hemmed a little in on all : sides penetrable jungle hill by a dense growth of imand on scrambling to the top of I close at hand. whom they might devour. and added by its rugged barrenness to the dreariness of the picture. This interminable nyika. and which was fortunately unoccupied It for the time being. appeared to be for the railway where the narrow track had been cut.

the general monotony of the had thus obtained a rough idea of the in neighbourhood. always cool latter and always running.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO N'dungu Escarp- stretched the unbroken line of the ment. while far off to the south I could just catch a glimpse of the snow-capped top of towering Kilima N j'aro. the being an exceptional "THIS INTERMINABLE Ityika" attribute in this part of East Africa of lofty green relief trees to along its and the fringe banks formed a . and little my "boys" pitched my tent in a clearing close . The stores were unpacked. and began I When earnest to make preparations for my stay in this out- of-the-way place. The one redeeming This is feature of the neighits bourhood was the river from which Tsavo takes a swiftly-flowing stream. I returned to my hut. name. welcome landscape.

to had slept the night before and not far Railhead had from the main camp of the workmen. and the other works for a distance of side thirty on each survey of of Tsavo. at this time just reached the western side of the river. a diversion had been made and the river crossed by means to of a temporary bridge. and sent my ." had be pushed on with all speed. and some thousands of Indian coolies and other the line workmen were encamped there. As " THE RIVER CROSSED BY MEANS OF A TEMPORARY BRIDGE. to I accordingly made a what had be done. My principal to work was complete miles to erect the all permanent structure.i8 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO where I CHAP.

supplies In a short time in. through the and blasting. C 2 . WOMEN OF UGANDA.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO requisition for labour. tools and material to the head- quarters at Kilindini. and the workmen and noise of hammers echoed merrily and sledges. came pouring drilling district.

that the work- men at all. and for over nine months waged an intermittent warfare against the railway and all those connected with culminated 1898.CHAPTER II THE FIRST APPEARANCE OF THE MAN-EATERS UNFORTUNATELY continue for long. This when a perfect reign of terror in December. but as time went on they stopped at nothing and indeed braved any danger in order to obtain their favourite food. At first in their efforts to carry off a victim. Two most voraci- ous and insatiable man-eating lions appeared upon the scene. and their man-stalking so well-timed and so certain of success. in it in the vicinity of Tsavo. firmly believed that they were not real animals but devils in lions' shape. Their methods then became so uncanny. they actually succeeded in bringing the they were not always successful railway works to a complete standstill for about three weeks. in happy state of affairs did not and our work was soon interrupted this a rude and startling manner. Many a time the .

I was roused one morning about daybreak and told that one of my jemadars. very good workmen. however. and was more inclined to believe that the unfortunate at men had been the victims of foul play their comrades. and was soon convinced that the . was absolutely They were quite convinced that the angry spirits of two departed native chiefs had taken this form in order to protest against a railway being made through to their country. This suspicion. and dragged Naturally off I and eaten. ii APPEARANCE OF THE MAN-EATERS me that it 21 coolies solemnly assured useless to attempt to shoot them. had been seized in his tent during the night. the hands of some of it They happened. no time in lost making an examina- tion of the place. insult and by stopping its progress thus shown to them.CH. so I thought it were. and was told that they their tents had been carried off by night from and devoured by lions. At the time I did not credit this story. and had each saved a fair number of rupees. Shortly afterwards one or two coolies I mysteriously disappeared. a fine powerful Sikh named Ungan Singh. About three weeks after my arrival. as quite likely that some scoundrels from for the the gangs had murdered them sake of their money. was very soon dispelled. I avenge the had only been a few days at Tsavo when I first heard that these brutes had been seen in the neighbourhood.

who happened be staying at Tsavo found at the time. the jemadar shared his tent with half a dozen other workmen. man had as its "pug" marks were plainly visible in the sand. " Was he not . where he doubtless . while the furrows made by the heels of the victim showed the direction in which he had been dragged away. Moreover. The next moment he was gone. himself met with a it tragic fate very shortly afterwards. forced to listen to the terrible Poor Ungan struggle which took place outside. He graphicat about midnight. and was accompanied by to Captain Haslem. We an easy matter to follow the route taken by the lion. the lion ally described how. fighting with a lion " ? I On hearing this dreadful story at once set out to try to track the animal. fellow cried out his O0n? " (" Let go"). and one of his bedfellows had actually witnessed the occurrence.22 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO indeed been carried off by a lion. as he appeared to have stopped several times before beginning his meal. and who. Pools of blood marked these halting-places. Singh must have died hard but what chance had he? As a coolie gravely remarked. and threw arms up round the lion's neck. and his panic-stricken companions lay helpless. poor fellow. CHAP. suddenly put seized its head in at the open tent door and Ungan Singh " the opening who happened to be nearest The unfortunate by the throat.

had been save for the holes made by the lion's tusks on seizing him.) THE TENT FROM WHICH Jemadar UNGAN SINGH WAS CARRIED OFF. reaching the spot where the body had been devoured. (I have been led to believe that this is their custom from the I appearance of two half-eaten bodies which : subse- quently rescued the skin was gone in places. as if it had been sucked. the eyes staring wide .n APPEARANCE OF THE MAN-EATERS 23 indulged in the man-eaters' habit of licking the skin off so as to get at the fresh blood. and On the flesh looked dry. but the unfortunate jemadars head left intact. The ground a dreadful spectacle presented itself. all round was covered with blood and morsels of flesh and bones. and lay a short distance away from the other remains.

the other workmen remained left in I their tents. and on closer examination we found that two lions had been there and had probably struggled for possession of the body. Shortly after settling hopes of bagging one of the brutes were raised by the sound of their ominous down my vigil. or how narrow were to be my own escapes from sharing poor Ungan Singh's fate. experience of man-eating I Thus occurred my lions. but no more doors were open. return to for hoping that the lions would I was followed to another victim. one barrel loaded with ball and the other with to slug. open with a startled. for first there and then that would no pains to I little neighbourhood of the knew the trouble that was in store rid the me. We collected the remains as well as we could and its heaped stones on them. The place was considerably cut up. but took back to camp for identification before the Medical Officer. more terrified coolies. That same night I sat up in a tree close to the late jemadars it tent. my roaring coming closer and closer. It was the most gruesome sight I had ever seen. the head with terrified stare seeming to watch us all the it fixed.24 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. for we did not bury. Presently this . horrified look in them. time. begged to be allowed to sit up in the tree with my all who me . perch by a few of the. had with me my 303 and a 12 -bore shot gun. and I vowed spare brutes.

After a night's rest. All at once. however. shortly after I A steady commenced had settled down night of watching. my uncomfortable post. which tied under my tree in the hope that the lion might be to carried a bright close behind me. but the feeling I well remember of impotent enced when cries disappointment I experiabout midnight I heard screams and and a heartrending shriek. hoping to get a shot. we heard a great uproar and frenzied cries coming from another camp about half lions a mile away . .ii APPEARANCE OF THE MAN-EATERS 25 ceased. as one of men his turn I lamp was followed by another leading a goat. we knew then that the lions had seized a victim there. did not at the idea of walking the half-mile to the place after dark. and that we should see or hear nothing further of them that night. I took up I my position all like in a suitable tree near this tent. my He in tempted drizzle to seize it instead of a coolie. as always stalk their prey in complete silence. my however. therefore. but all the same I felt fairly safe. and I was soon thoroughly I stuck to chilled and wet. which told me that the man-eaters had again eluded me and had claimed another victim elsewhere. Next morning I found that one of the brutes had broken into a tent at Railhead Camp whence we had heard the commotion during the night and had made off with a poor wretch who was lying there asleep. and quiet reigned for an hour or two.

26 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO At this CHAP. In a thick jungle of the kind round Tsavo the hunted animal has every chance against the hunter. time the various camps for the workmen were very scattered. and as their tactics seemed to be to break into a different camp each night. it was most difficult to forestall them. They almost appeared. so that the lions had a range of some eight miles on either side of Tsavo to work upon . was an exceedingly tiring and really foolhardy undertaking. gave up hope of some day finding their lair. time when attempting I to force to my way through this bewildering tangle had be released by r my gun" . too. a dead twig or something of the sort is sure to crackle just at the Still I never critical moment and so give the alarm. to have an extraordinary and uncanny faculty of finding out our plans beforehand. dense wilderness as surrounded us. moreover. particular place they invariably avoided that and seized their victim for the night from some other Hunting them by day. as however careful the latter may be. from there onwards. owing to . so that no matter in how likely or how tempting a spot we lay in wait for them. and accordingly continued to devote all my spare time to Many a crawling about through the undergrowth. in such a camp. " bearer from the fast clutches of the w ait-a-bit and often with immense pains only to lose the trail I succeeded in tracing the lions to the river after they had seized a victim.

to the intense relief of the terrified bunniah. The donkey was other his claws badly wounded. and the lion was just about to seize the trader. the Greek was quite unhurt and suffered from nothing worse than a . Shortly after this Greek contractor equally named Themistocles Pappadimitrini had an marvellous escape. oil The rattle were strung across the donkey's and clatter made by these as he dragged them after him gave him such a fright that he turned tail and bolted off into the jungle. ing bunniah (Indian trader) was riding along on his donkey late one night. off with the mattress Though rudely awakened. when in some way. a shivering with fear. who quickly made his way up the nearest tree and remained there.ii APPEARANCE OF THE MAN-EATERS 27 the rocky nature of the ground which they to seemed be careful to choose in retreating to their den. was sleeping peacefully in when a lion broke in. when suddenly a lion sprang out on him. knocking over both man and in beast. am glad to in their say. or became entangled tins a rope by which two empty neck. and seized on which he was He and made lying. episode. I At this early stage of the struggle. and one or two relieve amusing incidents occurred to the tension from which our nerves were On one occasion an enterprisbeginning to suffer. his tent one night. for the rest of the night. the lions were not always successful a efforts to capture human being for their nightly meal.

as will be seen. These. but instead of seizing the man himself.28 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO fright. . but perished miserably of thirst on the way. or sitting round a brightly burning fire. and except as food they beings. met with a melancholy fate not long afterwards. dropping it in disgust some little distance away when he realised his mistake. or inside a closed tent. however. and made off with it. which was badly torn . CH. showed a complete contempt for human Having once marked down a victim. whether he were protected by a thick fence. flurried or frightened them in the least. to the Kilima N 'jaro district to buy He had been cattle. On another occasion fourteen coolies who slept together in a large tent were one night awakened by a lion suddenly jumping on to the tent and breaking through it. in his hurry he grabbed a large bag of rice which happened to be lying in the tent. were only the earlier efforts of Later on. The brute landed with one claw on a coolie's shoulder. however. n bad This same man. Shots. and on cut the return journey attempted to take a short across country to the railway. they would allow nothing to deter them from securing him. shouting and firebrands they alike held in derision. nothing the man-eaters.

'' -CHAPTER III THE ATTACK ON THE GOODS-WAGON ALL this time my own tent was pitched in an open clearing. but on going out with a lantern we could discover nothing. how- ever. .] [MR. plainly revealed the pug marks of a lion.[TIIK AI'THOR. " " Daylight. unprotected by a fence of any kind One night when the medical officer. Rose.VS c. had a narrow escape. Warned by . Dr. we were awakened about midnight by hearing something tumbling about among the tent ropes. \V. KAW'SON ] "MY 0\VX TENT PITCHED IX AN OPEN CLEARING. was staying with me. so that on that occasion I fancy one or other of us this experience. round it.

at who had just arrived district. the verandah of this hut in the evenings but was .30 at THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO once arranged to move to take medical CHAP. or thorn fence. close to the old caravan route leading to Uganda . Brock. Brock and I used For the under it to sit out . well it made and thick and high.M LEAVES AND BOUGHS. "\VE SHARED A HUT OF PAI. and a bright night. Tsavo charge of the We we shared a hut of palm leaves and boughs. I my quarters." and we had surrounded by a circular boma. about seventy yards in diameter. and went to join forces with Dr. was always kept up throughout the sake of coolness. Our personal servants fire also lived within the enclosure. which had constructed on the eastern side of the river.

in THE ATTACK ON THE GOODS-WAGON trying to 31 our nerves to attempt to read or write there. the camps of the workmen had . been surrounded by thorn fences nevertheless the lions managed to jump over or to break through . and cast many an anxious beyond the glance out into the of the firelight. too. inky darkness circle "THE CAMPS OF THE WORKMEN HAD ALSO BEEN SURROUNDED BY THORN FENCES. and be on us before we were therefore kept our rifles within easy aware." On but one or two occasions. as we never knew when a lion might rather spring over the boma. we found in the morning fence . By also this time. We reach. that the lions had come quite close to the in fortunately they never succeeded getting through.

the attentions of the lions became more apparent and made a deeper impression. scattered over a Tsavo. and regularly every few carried off. was then left with only some few hundred . and it required powers of persuasion to induce the men to stay on. that as the man-eaters had such a large number of victims to choose from. however. were kept burning Within these enclosures all fires night. men to and as all the complete the permanent works remaining workmen were naturally camped together.32 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. panic A regular all consequently ensued. These he manipulated by means of a long . I suppose. workman coming in So long. man was the reports of the to disappearance of this or that me with painful frequency. in some one or other nights a of these. the coolies appeared not much notice of the dreadful deaths of their comrades. I succeeded in doing so only by allowing them to knock off all regular work until my they had built exceptionally thick and high bonias round each camp. Each man felt. In fact. and it was also the duty of the night-watchman to keep clattering half a dozen empty oil tins suspended from a convenient tree. I with the railway. the chances of their selecting him in particular were But when the large camp moved ahead very small. area to as Railhead Camp with its two or three thousand wide remained take at men. matters altered considerably.

am D .

The beast made a spring towards him. their camp was stood rather apart from the other camps. When hospital the railhead left workmen moved behind. while sitting in safety within his tent frightful and the up all noise thus produced was kept at frequent intervals during the night in the hopes of terrifying away the man-eaters. as if barriers were of no avail against the "demons ". It on. for before very long one of them found a weak spot in the boma and broke through. and men continued to disappear. and in doing so box containing medical stores. CHAP. he was more sucas he jumped on to and broke through a which eight patients were lying. however. rope.34 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO . the lions would not be denied. horrified to see a great lion standing a few ing a noise outside. tent in Here. It seemed. unfortunately. In spite of these precautions. however. in a clearing about three-quarters of a mile from my hut. On this occasion the HearHospital Assistant had a marvellous escape. but was all protected by a good thick fence and to appear- ance was quite secure. which gave the Assistant such a fright that he jumped backwards. cessful. he opened the door of his tent and was yards away looking at him. Two of . luckily upset a This crashed down with such a loud clatter of breaking glass that the lion was startled for the moment and made off to another part of the enclosure.

"THE TWO WOUNDED COOLIES WERE LEFT WHERE THEY LAY. while a third poor wretch was seized and dragged off The two wounded bodily through the thorn fence. decided to up all night in the D 2 . and hedge built round the the patients were moved in before stout lions generally visit recently sit As I had heard that I deserted camps. nightfall.in THE ATTACK ON THE GOODS-WAGON 35 them were badly wounded by his spring. a fresh site a all enclosure. a piece of torn tent and in this position the over them found them on our arrival soon after . coolies were left having fallen I doctor and where they lay. A PIECE OF TORN TENT HAVING FALLEN OVER THEM. We at once decided to move the hospital closer to the main camp . was prepared." dawn next morning.

seized out. and he sprang at a few vicious shakes the poor bhisti s agonising cries were silenced for ever. vacated boma in the hope of getting an opportunity of bagging one of them but in the middle of my . it appears. The lion get foot its head in below the canvas. like a huge cat with a mouse. with his head towards the centre of the tent and his feet nearly touching the side. managed to him by the box and pulled him In desperation the un- fortunate water-carrier clutched hold of a heavy in a vain attempt to prevent himself being carried off. The bhisti. lonely vigil I had the mortification of hearing shrieks direction and cries coming from the telling of the that new our hospital. and dragged it with him until he was forced to let go by He being stopped by the side of the tent.36 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. to the place at daylight I Hurrying found that one of the lions had jumped over the newly erected fence and had carried off the hospital bhisti (water-carrier). and ran up and down the boma . The brute then seized him in his mouth. As soon as the lion managed his throat to get him after clear of the tent. then caught hold of a tent rope. and that several other coolies had been unwilling witnesses of the terrible scene which took place within the circle of light given by the big camp fire. and clung its it tightly to until it broke. me only too plainly dreaded foes had once more eluded me. had been lying on the floor.

This he found and plunged into. and also tied up a few cattle in in it as bait for the lions. with the teeth (a much prized by certain in India. On one of these relic was a silver ring. was sent to the man's widow Again again. including a stronger and thicker boma. Dr. and to sit in this Brock and I arranged still up that night. We left a couple of tents standing within the enclosure. I When the patients had been moved. little There was left was the usual horrible sight. castes). Fortu- . the jaws. and this.in THE ATTACK ON THE GOODS-WAGON weak spot to 37 looking for a presently break through. had a covered goods-wagon placed in a favourable position on a siding which ran close to the site which had just been abandoned. it was decided to move the hospital . Four miles from Tsavo they had attempted to seize a coolie who was walking along the line. Brock and I were easily able to follow his track. and soon found the remains about in four hundred yards away the bush. of the unfortunate bhisti Very only the skull. and before nightfall. who had been places in seen the no less than three different neighbourhood during the afternoon (April 23). still the work was completed. dragging his victim with him and leaving shreds of torn cloth and flesh as ghastly evidences of his passage through the thorns. a few of the larger bones and a portion of the palm with one or two fingers attached.

we . In accordance with our plan. we did a very foolish thing in taking up our position so late nevertheless. quiet. next appeared close to Tsavo Station. became if very uneasy. we were unable to see in the inky darkness. who They caught sight of him from a passing train. reached our destination to our in safety. until he was rescued by the Traffic Manager. in the direction of the abandoned bovia. too. In the light of subsequent events. Brock as he was returning about dusk from the hospital. . however. We had the lower half of the door of the wagon closed. and we could hear them moving about restlessly. and we knew that an animal of some sort was about. tree.38 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. while : upper half was left wide open for observation and we faced. nately. Then again came dead silence. more dead than alive. Soon afterwards we heard a dull thud. to our right. the doctor and I set out after dinner for the goods-wagon. when suddenly. which. a dry twig snapped. of course. however. which was about a mile away from our hut. and a couple of hours later some workmen saw one of the lions stalking Dr. and settled down the watch about ten o'clock. some heavy body had The cattle. as jumped over the boma. For an hour or two everything was and the deadly silence was becoming very monotonous and oppressive. he had just time to escape up a where he remained.

silently reconnoitring our Presently stealthily to I fancied us. so under my breath I asked Brock whether he saw anything. outside position. at the I same time covering the dark object as well as . the doorway had not been properly and while we were wondering what the lion could be doing inside the boma for so long. to trust which by that time were strained by prolonged staring through the darkness. my eyes. however. thought he had seen lest I to say so something move. Orders had been given for the entrance to the boma to be blocked up. but was afraid . Brock did not answer he told me afterwards that he. too.in THE ATTACK ON THE GOODS-WAGON At this juncture I I 39 proposed to my companion should get out of the wagon and lie on the ground close to it. of fact. for at that very did moment one of the man-eaters although we not know it was quietly stalking us. persuaded me to remain I where I was . As a matter however. however. I saw something coming very I towards feared. could with my rifle. as I could see better in that that position should the lion his prey. and a few seconds afterwards I was heartily glad that had taken his advice. and accordingly we were listening in the expectation of hearing the lion force his way out through the bushes with his prey. come in our direction with Brock. and was even then almost within springing distance. all the time. he was closed.

Mine was nowhere first to be found. The next morning we found Brock's bullet embedded have in the could not sand close to a footprint it missed the lion by more than an . Thus ended my the man-eaters. then with a sudden bound a huge body sprang at us. off in As was. The lion I shouted.40 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO fire CH. he would undoubtedly have got one of us. and we too both fired almost simultaneously not a moment it soon. probably blinded by the flash and frightened by the noise of the double report which was increased a hundred- by the reverberation of the hollow iron roof of Had we not been very much on the the truck. fold alert. for in another second the brute would assuredly have landed inside the wagon. and we realised that we had had a very lucky and very narrow escape. in should and it turn out to be nothing after all. After this there was intense " silence again " ! for a second or two. he must have swerved his spring. direct encounter with one of . inch or two.

I . which had been left ajar. line. another gang of men were laying the foundations of a girder bridge which was to span for all traffic to pass was going . rock-drillers to work at once and soon had ample room made unimpeded. and consequently any material which happened to project outside the wagons or trucks caught on the jagged for room myself saw the door of a guard's van. In the hurry of pushing on the laying of the just enough to allow of the rock had originally been cut away an engine to pass.CHAPTER IV THE BUILDING OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE troublesome period the construction of the railway had been going steadily forward all this DURING and the first important piece of work which arrival I had commenced on was completed. While this on. it This was the widening of a rock cutting through which the railway ran just before reached the river. smashed to atoms in this way and accordingly I put a gang of faces of the cutting.

when a river friend was available I was delightful. so when our work my should build a raft companion suggested that we and float down-stream home. The day had been exceedingly hot and tired we were both correspondingly finished. Setbuilt. and this meant some very pleasant work me in taking levels up the banks of the river under the cool shade of the palms. This would have taken too long to erect when rail- head was round to the side. and a luncheon served with occasionally a friend to share it in the wilds. took my While doing this. we soon had a raft lashing the poles together with the fibre which grows in abundance all over the it district. the slopes leading up to it banked up on either side. the gully Then. When little it was finished.42 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. a water supply had to be established for . ready. went a long way up the my was and was accompanied by a young member of staff. we pushed out of the backwater . but nevertheless he decided to give it a trial. it. I often camp-kit with me. also. so a diversion had been made the temporary track leading down almost bed of the nullah and up again on the further When the foundations and abutments were was spanned by an iron girder. a gully between this cutting and Tsavo Station. and the permanent way laid on an easy grade. ting to work with our axes. On one occasion in particular. I feasibility of the was rather doubtful of the scheme. at the place.

iv THE BUILDING OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE it 43 had been constructed." his ducking. it when much I promptly toppled gracefully friend to scramble quickly up the bank out of reach my amusement over. moment my time was fully occupied. he laughed as heartily as I at the adventure.] : [MR. RAWSON. Superintending the various works and a hundred other duties kept me busy all day long. and the young All went well until it got engineer jumped aboard. when. Except every for an occasional relaxation of of this sort. WITH OCCASIONALLY A FRIEND TO SHARE IT. while my . none the worse for [THE AUTHOR.] A LUNCHEON SERVED IN THE WILDS. helped my to of possible crocodiles. c. where out into midstream.

and the work of sinking their The two centre piers in foundations was begun. Then we found we had to sink much deeper than foundation. evenings were given up to settling disputes the coolies. too. These involved much work on my part cross and oblique . current and the volume of water at all mean. and in Preparations. we struck solid rock on foundation-stones could be laid with perfect safety. until I we expected to in order to reach a solid Indeed. hearing reports the various among jemadars and complaints from and workpeople. the sinking went on and on.44 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. when at last. for the principal piece of work the river building of the railway bridge over the Tsavo were going personal on apace. and low levels had to be found. and the necessary calculations made. in the district studying the Swahili language. and had to be dammed particular up and pumped dry again before work could be resumed. abutments and caused a great deal of trouble. Another great difficulty with which we had to contend was the absence of suitable stone in the neighbourhood. as the river broke in several times. to my which the huge relief. I These having at length been marked out the positions for the piers. the rate of the flood. completed. despair of finding one and was began about to resort to pile-driving. It was not that there was none to . sections of the river had to be taken.

There bird. when one day and accident on the very thing. on getting should drive them over in my direction." cackling hearing I some guinea-fowl circuit half in his shot. Meanwhile I felt the ground very hard under my knee. for Brock had got to work. made a round them so that Brock. though at first I had grave misgivings about the distance to be traversed and the difficulty of transporting the stone across the . to and was beginning think that we should be forced to use iron columns for the piers. for I material searching. and which was exactly the kind of which I had long been fruitlessly was greatly delighted with my unexpected discovery.iv THE BUILDING OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE district 45 be found. another chance. I among the bushes. and a bridge built of it would I have been very costly. which extended for some distance. and on examination found that the bank of the ravine was formed of stone.hunting. was so intensely hard as to be almost impossible to work. and being a first-rate shot had quickly bagged a brace. eventually got into position on the edge of a deep ravine and knelt on one knee. for the whole but that it abounds in rock. spent many a weary day trudging through the thorny wilderness vainly searching for suitable material. crouching down among the ferns. " stumbled quite by Brock and I were out I pot. had scarcely time to load when over flew a which I missed badly and I did not have I .

Accordingly. tram line right throwing a the temporary bridge across the Tsavo. that the only found in the end way of getting the material to the place where it was wanted was by laying down a along the ravine. indeed. I CHAP. the a basket over it jemadar. grew so tame that it would at meal times and eat from my When the road for the trolley line was cleared. following stream down and re-crossing it again close to the site of the permanent bridge. who promptly dropped it and held fast. and confused by the shouting ran straight at Shere Shah. where it very soon became a great pet. intervening country.46 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Indeed. to I set men cut work at once to down the jungle and prepare a road on which to lay the double trolley line. I happened it to arrive just in time life. Terrified it of the men. to save the graceful little animal's and took it home to my camp. table jump upon my hand. the next piece of work was the building of the two . One morning when they were thus engaged. a little paa a kind of very " small antelope IT sprang out VERY SOON BECAME A GREAT PET _" and round in i r i suddenly the midst of a gang ir itself 111 of coolies.

iv THE BUILDING OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE river." this feeding line was finished in a very short time. and had a flood come down away . 47 temporary bridges over the in the These we made roughest fashion out of palm trees and logs felled at the crossing places. have both been swept fortunately. however. and trollies were soon plying backwards and also forwards with loads of stone and sand. of course. An amusing day when I was taking a photograph of an enormous block of stone which incident occurred one . as discovered quality in we the the latter in abundance and of good bed of the ravine. they would.RA SINGH MADE A WILD SPRING INTO THE WATER TO GET CLEAR OF THE FALLING STONE. this did not occur until the permanent work was completed. The whole of HEF.

48 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. no one was injured in the operation. was being hauled across one of these temporary bridges. But we did not know that the in stream had succeeded washing away the foundaand as the weight tions of one of the log supports of the trolley with the stone came on the under. stood on the top of the stone to operations. while the overseer. while Purshotam and the the bank. river. mined pier. was Presently we returning to the quarry for sand. was altogether a most comical at the very I and an extraordinary chance that of the accident moment should be taking a photograph of Fortunately. Heera direct Purshotam Hurjee. the slightest. superintended the gangs of men who hauled the ropes at either end in order to steady it up and down the inclines. came to the sharp incline which led to the log bridge . As the trolley with its very careful manipulation. just snapped the into the Heera Singh made a wild spring to water get clear of the falling if stone. Not long after this occurrence my own labours were one day nearly brought to a sudden and unI was travelling along in an empty pleasant end. the rails tilted up and over went the as I whole thing into the picture. It rest fled as for their lives to sight. trolley which. pushed by two sturdy Pathans. and the stone was recovered undamaged with but little trouble. my Singh. heavy load required head mason.

leaping off. A first moment afterwards I felt myself over the edge of the bridge. This accident. dull was happily . to step on to it and to let its own momentum take it down the it Here speed when necessary by a brake in the shape of a pole. and flew without brake of any kind. instead of running.beside the trolley. unattended by injury to anyone. slope. which one of them carried and by which the wheels could be locked. just missing by a hair's breadth a projecting beam but luckily I landed on a sand bank at the side of the s . the pole was by some accident dropped overboard. 49 over the was the custom of the men. flying head river. down Near the hill we the bridge was a sharp curve in the line. however. thought it was better to stick to it than to risk there . where I was I afraid the trolley would jump the rails still. moderating its On this occasion.iv THE BUILDING OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE river. me with a thud close by. the heavy trolley falling clear of also.

I had discovered the stone for the bridge. to I sent down dress to the coast for gangs of it. masons sent work and for this The men who were me purpose were mostly Pathans and were supposed to be expert workmen but I soon found that many . and drew up a scale of pay which would enable the genuine . than other troubles. of them had not the faintest notion of stone-cutting. have already described and no sooner did the beasts of prey appear to have deserted us. no less After serious. I our troubles with the lions . for the time being at any rate. and were simply ordinary coolies who had posed as masons in order to draw forty-five instead of twelve rupees a month. On discovering this fact.CHAPTER V TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN IT seemed fated that the building of the Tsavo peace Bridge should never be allowed to proceed for in any length of time. arose with the workmen themselves. I imme- diately instituted a system of piece-work.

jemadar came rushing up to me to say that the men were all fighting and murdering each other with sticks and stones. was dusk One particularly serious disturbance of this sort I a rather amusing sequel. were greatly and accordingly they attempted to intimidate the remainder into coming down to their own standard as regards output of thereby inducing abandon the piece-work system of payment. the impostors in the majority . and I had frequently to go down to their camp to quell disturbances and had to separate the Hindus from the Mohammedans. succeeded injured in restoring order. in the hope of me I to This. Now. as work. I had no intention of doing. I had to play (native beds) These . sitting after one evening at the door of my hut. when I heard a great commotion in the masons' camp. however. as is often the case in this world. men I lying stretched had carried up to my own boma on charpoys and Brock being away. I fair amount These masons were continually having quarrels and fights amongst themselves. knew had demanded only a perfectly that of work from each man. v TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN to earn his forty-five rupees a mason a little month and more if he felt inclined and would cut down the impostors to about their proper pay as coolies. I ran back with him at once and but found seven badly out on the ground. which lay Presently a only a few hundred yards away. E 2 .CH.

stitching one and bandaging another and generally doing what was There was one man. About eleven I o'clock that night was called up and asked on to go down to the masons' to camp I to see a man who was supposed be dying. Scarcely had he been removed. He was now pretending to be badly injured. him to be a certain mason called Karim Bux. On to I hearing this. and that as a matter of fact he was the sole cause of the disturbance. however. where . got some brandy and ran down to the camp. when the head jemadar came and informed me that the man was not hurt at all. groaned loudly and held a cloth over his face as On lifting this covering. his He was then carried back to camp.52 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. who if was well known to I me as a prime mischief-maker carefully. who possible. I gave instructions that he was not . go to Voi in the special train with the others but had not heard the last of him yet. in order to escape the punishment which he knew he would receive if I discovered that he was the instigator of the trouble. at once pulled my boots. among I the men. groaning grievously all the time. I found he were dying. examined him I but as could discover nothing amiss. concluded that he must have received some ingly told at internal injury. the doctor myself as best could. and accord- him that I would send him to the hospital line) Voi (about thirty miles down the to be attended to properly.

He pretended to be desperately ill and again asked for dawa but having finally satisfied myself that it was . Next day at noon when it was my custom to told have evil-doers brought up for judgment Karim Bux. which was shouldered by four coolies who. I lifted the blanket with which he had covered himself and he had no thoroughly examined him. I could see. also a score or so of his friends hanging of doubtless waiting in the expectation When the bed seeing the "Sahib" hoodwinked.\\e pulling the blanket over his head. and carefully covered him up again. accordingly ordered him to be carried to in my boma. as jemadar had said pure budmashi (devilment) I told him that I was going to give him some very effective dawa. "foxing. There were around. and a few moments he arrived in his charpoy. that for he was only (medicine). I then got a big armful of shavings from a carpenter's bench which was close by.v TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN I 53 my surprise and amusement my friend Karim Bux who was was perfectly evident to me to found that it was It at death's door. was placed on the ground near me. put them under the bed and set fire to . but was told that he was too I I asked for ill to walk. knew quite well that he was only shamming. \. at the same time feeling him to make sure that fever." but I when he asked dawa him gravely that I would give him some very good dawa in the morning.

which clever workman. His amused comrades greeted me with shouts of " Shabash. who got in a couple of good whacks on his shoulders with a stout stick before he effected his escape. I watch night. for the man-eaters during the Coming unexpectedly to find on the was amazed dead silence reigning stretched out in the it I and my rascals of workmen all shade under the trees taking sleeping. peeped over the edge of the blanket and when he saw the smoke and flame leaping up round him. later in never had any He came back imploring the day. he threw the blanket from him. pursued by a Sikh sepoy. and like a deer to the entrance of my boma. watched little their pro- ceedings through the bushes for a while. I Sahib!" ("Well done. the scene changed like magic each man simply flew to his particular work. and hammers . very easy some and by some playing cards. sprang from the bed " exclaiming devil ! Beiman fled skaitan!" ("Unbelieving "). sir!"). readily granted. and further trouble with Karim Bux. as he was a few days after this incident I was returning home one morning from a tree in which I had been A keeping previous quarry.54 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO As soon as the CHAP. them. fright then firing it occurred to rifle me to give them a my over their heads. he . with I clasped hands forgiveness. On the report : being heard. sham invalid felt the heat.

and unconvincing narrathey had actually induced one of their fellow to workmen make a few holes like shot holes in their backs. They I thought. but had scarcely arrived there when two of the scoundrels tottered up after me. fined every present heavily. I man then proceeded to my hut. so that they achieved by this elaborate tissue of falsehood to bring on themselves the derision of their comrades and the imposition of an extra fine. when the masons realised that fair intended to make each man do a day's work for his this money. had been silence a moment before. and would allow nothing to prevent intention from being carried out. of course.v TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN chisels all 55 and where resounded merrily and energetically. who had thus shown himself utterly unfit for his position. they came to the conclusion that the best thing to do would be to . and these were bleeding profusely. however. and they had also forgotten to make corresponding all holes in their clothing. besides summarily degrading the Headman. but been watching them to their consternation late. I Unfortu- had been carrying a rifle and not a shot gun. that was still some distance as off I and had not seen them. In order to give a semblance of truth to an otherwise bald tive. bent almost double and calling Heaven to witness that I had shot them both in the back. I shouted to them that they were too for I had some time. was Shortly after I this. nately for them.

lonely quarry. Accordingly the next morning (September 6) started off as usual along the trolley line in I to the line. however. As I reached a bend the head mason. he said that he dared not tell. but that he and not to proceed. Heera Singh. and was rather inclined to think that the informant had been sent merely to frighten me. Within an hour after the meeting had dispersed. and affixed his finger-mark to a long strip of cheerful proposal every man paper as a binding token. and then they were to say To this that I had been killed and eaten by a lion. put Accordingly they held a meeting one night. all CHAP.56 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO me quietly out of the way. a very good man. but determined to go to the quarry in the the same. where of course would soon be devoured by wild beasts. who had crept into my camp to give me warning. that I and to after a long palaver it was arranged I was be murdered next day when the quarry. crept cautiously out of the bushes and warned my me asking him the reason. I thanked him for his information. being sworn to secrecy. I was aroused by one of the conspirators. present at the meeting agreed. to On my twenty other masons were not going work that . as at this stage of affairs morning really all I did not believe that they carrying out such a diabolical were capable of scheme. made my to be usual visit to My body was it thrown into the jungle.

but I laughingly assured him there would be no trouble and continued on my way. did not matter whom in he complained pocket-book in of. so there would be no escape still I accompanied the jemadar up the gully. and asked me if I would further felt go and see them. When we got to the further gang. jemadar. men were working away busily. with gangs in narrow part of the ravine. a treacherous-looking that informed me men working I refused to obey his up the ravine had orders. he went so far as to I point out the two men who. thought I would see the adventure through. and As soon felt that there was something in the wind. as they were afraid of trouble at the quarry. had refused to do what he as I told suppose he thought that it was never to leave the place alive. . I noted their names my my usual manner. All the everything seemed perfectly peaceful. as I came up the to the first gang of workmen. front of me and behind me. . On my arrival at the thing the story quarry. but after a moment or two I noticed stealthy side glances. he them I said. the villain. whatever came of it. and Immediately a yell of rage was raised by the whole body of some sixty men. device to lure at once that this was a me into the where.v TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN 57 clay. answered by a similar shout from those I had turned to retrace my steps. this in I At began to I think that there was some- had heard overnight.

This occasioned a moment's confusion. and threw him closely from in. afraid to be the first . seizing and shouting out that he was going my to "be hung and shot for me rather a curious way of putting it. brute. and fortun- ately they listened to I what had to say. my arms I free. however.58 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO passed. and before they had time to recover themI selves I had started haranguing them still I in Hindustani. . and CHAP. I am certain that I should As it was. for I stood at still. never have got up again alive. hurled if the in man next him at me and he had succeeded knocking me down. me but by this time was hemmed and everywhere I looked I could see nothing One burly but evil and murderous-looking faces. both wrists I easily wrenched . sprang on to the top of the rock. of which I quickly took advantage. carrying crowbars and flourishing their heavy hammers. to deal a blow. first who numbered about a hundred. I told them about their plot to murder me. many of them would assuredly be knew all . Both groups of men. but that was his exact expression. and one man rushed '' me. then closed in on me in the narrow part of the ravine. and the man intended to knock me down was himself thrown violently against a rock. and but that they could certainly do so if they wished that if they did. over which he fell heavily. The that habit of obedience held them. waiting them to act. I stepped quickly aside.

while I if the others I resumed work and would Finally heard of no further plotting. were upright. I felt a little more secure. behave so and urged them not fools of in this themselves to be made way. and real worker . jumped down from the rock and if continued my rounds as nothing had happened. and after dismissing them. I said was only one or two to to allow scoundrels among them who had induced them stupidly. 59 hanged as the Sirkar (Government) would soon find out the truth and would disbelieve their story that that I I had been carried quite well that it off knew by a lion. of their take I no notice foolish conduct. Even supposing they were to carry out their plan of killing " " Sahib at once be set over me. measuring a stone here and there and commenting . self-respecting Pathans going to allow themselves to be led away by men of that kind? Once having got them to listen to me. and I accordingly went on to say that the discontented among them would be allowed to return at once to Mombasa. would not another them. I every hand that for the in the then felt moment I the victory was mine. and instantly crowd was raised. and might he not be an even harder task- master the ? They all knew it that I was just and fair to was only the scoundrels and shirkers who had anything to fear from me. called return to work to upon those who were willing to hold up their hands.v TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN for it.

another meeting being and a fresh plot made to murder me during Of this I was soon informed by my the night. and also to the District Officer. Two or three days after- wards the Railway Police arrived and arrested the ringleaders in the mutiny. Mr. time-keeper. the British when the details of the plots to murder me were unfolded by one of them who turned Queen's All the scoundrels were found guilty and evidence. for The danger was scarcely had I turned my back to go home when the mutiny broke out again. not yet past. unfortunately. go out and call the At kill him also. Crawford. v on the work done. who also told me that he was afraid to held. sentenced to various terms of imprisonment in the chain-gangs. so it was with feelings of great relief that an hour later I made my way back. tried before full Mr. roll. safe and sullen and sound. prompt action alone saved me from being attacked that very night. . Whitehead. as they had threatened to further outrage I this lost no time in telegraphing for the Railway Police. certain in a very un- mood.60 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO They were still CH. and not at all to be relied upon. however. to Tsavo. who immediately marched his road to my assistance. indeed. who were taken to Mombasa and Consul. that his men I twenty-five miles by have no doubt. and I was never again troubled with mutinous workmen.

strong trap out of wooden tram-rails. pieces of telegraph wire. heavy chain. until occurred to me that should they renew their attacks. In this breathing space which they vouchsafed us. and that if I could construct one in which a couple of coolies might be used as bait without being subjected to any danger. I accordingly set once. the lions would be quite daring enough to enter it in search of them to to and thus be caught.CHAPTER VI THE REIGN OF TERROR THE lions seemed to have got a bad Brock and wagon. a trap would perhaps offer the best chance of getting at them. It and a length of was divided into two compart- . I fright the night in the sat up in wait for them goods- for they kept molest us in away from Tsavo and did not any way for some considerable time long after Brock had left me and gone on safari (a caravan journey) to Uganda. and in a short time managed sufficiently work at make a sleepers. it not. in fact.

" heavy wooden sleepers. compartment they were perfectly as between them and the lion. of course. was not necessary for the lion to seize the bait in order to send the door clattering down. and embedded both top and bottom "THE DOOR WHICH WAS TO ADMIT THE LION.62 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO one for the CHAP. ran a cross wall of iron only three in inches apart. The door which was to admit the lion was. and once inside safe. ments men and one for the lion. A sliding door at one end admitted the former. at the opposite end of the structure. if he entered this rails the other. This part of the contrivance was arranged in the . but otherwise the whole thing was very much on except that the it principle of the ordinary rat-trap.

as In it fell and he could not push it out into a groove between two in the rails firmly embedded this trap.THE REIGN OF manner. so as to enable It be fastened by the wire to the chain. any way. however. to the to ground on either side of the these were fastened. that a hard-nosed bullet would penetrate the iron. and in an instant down would come the door behind him in . strongly secured by stout wire. and on making the experiment I was glad to find that a hole was made as cleanly as if it had been punched my '303 out. The door was of a piece of held in this position by a lever made rail. This made a sort of flexible door which could be packed into a small space when not in use. ground. short lengths of rails placed about six inches apart. TERROR 63 following A heavy chain was lion's secured along the top part of the doorway. and which abutted against the top of the doorway when turn lifted up. which to in was kept in its place by a wire fastened end and passing down to a spring concealed ground inside the cage. tread one in the As soon as the lion entered sufficiently far into the trap. the ends hanging down and opening . lot making which cost us a of work. .vi . occurred to me. . we were them from to rather at a loss for want of tools to bore holes in the rails for the doorway. he would be bound to his weight on this would on the spring release the wire.

One small for made back of the enclosure the men. For the first few nights I baited the I trap myself. proved false. which they were to close on going in by. was ready I pitched a tent over it in order further to deceive the lions. and built an exceedingly entrance was strong boma at the round it. i PITCHED A TEXT OVER IT. was left I open The wiseacres to whom showed my invention were generally of the opinion that the man-eaters would be too cunning to walk into my parlour but. but nothing happened except that had ." just in front of the door of the cage for the lions. their predictions . pulling a bush after them . and another entrance "WHEN THE TRAP WAS READY. as will be seen later.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO When the trap CHAP.

As time a matter of fact. that the lions had gone for good. time. thinking. one of whom was killed and eaten. when suddenly in the middle of the night one of the brutes F . routine. about ten miles away. it was some months before the lions attacked us again. two men were carried off from railhead. and the coolies. however. this latter place was again visited by the brutes. two more men being seized.vi THE REIGN OF TERROR 65 a very sleepless and uncomfortable time. believing that their dreaded foes had permanently deserted the district. On this occasion a number of men had been sleeping At last outside their tents for the sake of coolness. and was badly bitten by mosquitoes. though from time to we heard of their depredations in other quarters. resumed all their usual habits and occupations. Not long after our night in the goods- wagon. and life in the camps returned to its normal we were suddenly startled out of this One dark night the familiar feeling of security. terror-sticken cries and screams awoke the camps. while another was taken from a place called EngoWithin a very short mani. and we knew that the " demons" had returned and had commenced a new list of victims. As I have said. of course. we at Tsavo enjoyed complete immunity from attack. and the other so badly mauled that he died within a few days.

stones and firebrands were intruder. hoping that the lions would return and on the chance to the spot the following night . The alarm was at once given. outside by the second lion.66 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. and dragged him off He was joined through the thick thorn fence. Although several shots were fired in their direction coolie by the jemadar of the gang to which the belonged. but devoured him within thirty yards of the tent where he had been seized. seized an unfortunate wretch amid the cries and burst companions. direction of the All into was of no the however. for the midst of the terrified group. . they took no notice of these and did not attempt to move I until their horrible meal that was finished. was discovered forcing its way through the boma. and so daring had the shrieks of his two brutes become that they did not trouble to carry their victim any further away. however. my station at nightfall in a con- venient Nothing occurred to break I the monotony of a visit my watch. and sticks. The few scattered fragments to remained of the body would not allow be buried at once. and the next morning I learned that the lions had attacked another camp about two miles from Tsavo for by this time the camps were again scattered. except that had from a hysena. of this I took up tree. lion hurled in the avail. as I had works in There the progress all up and down the line.

and without a sound being heard. and still is.vi THE REIGN OF TERROR had been as in 67 man-eaters victim. the devil coming"). the men naturally looked to me In the whole of my life I have never experienced anyto thing more nerve-shaking than nearer. Shouts would then pass from camp " camp. Khabar dar. successful in obtaining a whom. F 2 brothers. but the warning . they How they camp. that the completely ceased. I After this occurrence. and stalking for we knew " they were their to prey. as for protection. the to previous the instance. the Once they reached roars camps. and to to hear the deep roars of these dreadful monsters nearer and know growing gradually that some one or other of us was doomed be their victim before the vicinity of morning dawned. but I felt man me a that it was a duty that had to be undertaken. for they took man after from different places without ever once giving This constant night chance of a shot at them. watching was most dreary and fatiguing work. but all in vain. bhaieon. a mystery to me I should have thought that it was next to impossible for devoured quite close . or else I was unlucky. sat up every night for over a week near likely camps. forced their way through the bomas without making a noise was. is shaitan ata (" Beware. Yet they conthrough at all. Either the lions saw me and then went elsewhere. an animal to get tinually did so.

had many helpers. I spent many a weary day crawling on my hands and knees through the dense undergrowth of the exasperating wilderness around us. met with the same lack of foes. About this time. civil. it seemed and the lions were really life. success. too. and sooner or agonising shrieks would break the silence cries later and next another man would be missing from roll-call morning. if I of victims than that killing I should have succeeded in either of them. devils after all bore a charmed As I have said before. as everything would have I been in their favour. while succeeding at the same time in obtaining a victim. and several to officers naval and military came Tsavo from the coast and sat up night after night in order to get a shot at our daring All of us. would prove of no avail.68 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. I in was naturally very disheartened at being foiled this way night after night. it was much more likely that they would have added me to their list matter of fact. and the lions always seemed capable of avoiding the watchers. track. As a had come up with the lions on any of these expeditions. I have a very vivid recollection of one particular . ing them through the jungle was a hopeless task but as something had to be done to keep up the men's spirits. and was soon at wits' if my as end to know what " to do " . however.

could plainly hear them crunching the filled bones. who mine. while the other waited outside in the bush but they began to change the bomas together and each seizing a victim. time matters gradually became worse Hitherto. man had been lying ill in their and on making enquiry I found that they had I immediately took callously left him behind alone. entering In . From and worse. and in addition it was so pitch it dark as to make impossible to see anything. now their tactics.vi THE REIGN OF TERROR when the brutes seized a 69 night man from to the railway to station and brought him I close my camp devour. as of course the poor was dead. only one of the man-eaters had made the attack and had done the . . but on He saw by the light of the lantern the poor fellow was beyond need of safety. foraging. and the sound of their dreadful purring the air and rang in my ears for days afterwards. rememcamp. but soon afterwards bered that one my I boma. The terrible thing was to feel so helpless it was useless to attempt to fellow go out. as a rule. some men with me entering his tent that I to bring him to my boma. became so lived in a small terrified on hear- ing the lions at their meal that they shouted and implored me to allow them to come inside This I willingly did. Some half a dozen enclosure close to workmen. had died of shock at being deserted by his this companions.

He was still alive when I saw him next morning. one being immediately and devoured. but so terribly mauled that he died before he could be got to the hospital. and when his terrified com- panions at last summoned up sufficient courage to go fast in the to his assistance. Within a few days of this the two brutes made a most ferocious attack on the largest camp in the .7o THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. they found him stuck "THEY FOUND HIM STUCK FAST IN THE BUSHES OF THE Boma" bushes of the boma. through which for once the lion had apparently 'been unable to drag him. this last way two Swahili porters were killed during the week of November. carried off The other was heard moaning for a long time.

stricken cries of " could plainly hear the paniccoolies. . we After examining the spot at once set out to follow the Mr. the morning. fired over fifty shots Inspector. in the gloom what of the we at first took to be a it lion closer inspection. Mr.vi THE REIGN OF TERROR which for safety's 71 section. Dalgairns. showed coolie. as there was a trail on the brutes. ominous growlings. Dalgairns feeling confident that he had wounded one of them. in the direction in which he heard the lions. and even from 1 my some distance away. The one arm and half the body had been eaten. we suddenly found ourselves in the vicinity of the lions." as the brutes carried off their unfortunate victim and camp. Suddenly the dead of night the two man-eaters burst in the terrified among boma. we saw cub . and were greeted with Cautiously advancing and pushing the bushes aside. sake was situated within a close to stone's throw of Tsavo Station and a in Permanent Way Inspector's iron hut. workmen. sand like that of the toes of a broken limb. to be the the remains unfortunate which man-eaters had legs. shrieking of the Then followed They've taken him horrible they've taken him. however. it evidently abandoned at our approach. but they were not to be frightened and calmly lay there until began their feast close beside the The their in meal was finished. and was the stiff fingers of the other arm trailing along . After some careful stalking.

72 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO left CHAP. not to supply food for No sooner had they either lions or "devils. we had taken By this to be the trail of a wounded to time the it beasts had retired far into the thick jungle where was impossible follow them. in a body and stated that they would not remain at Tsavo any longer for anything or any- body they had come from India on an agreement to work for the Government. and works were completely the next three weeks practically nothing was done but build "lion-proof" huts for . the railway for stopped . Now the bravest men in the world. therefore. The whole was by this time thoroughly panic-stricken. not stand constant district terrors of this sort indefinitely. and then. When I sent for them. to find on my return to that to to same afternoon (December i) the men had all struck work and were waiting camp that speak to me. and I was not at all surprised." delivered this ultimatum than a regular stampede took place. so we had the remains of the coolie buried and once more returned home disappointed. they After this from the accursed spot. the sand which had the marks lion. they flocked my boma . swarming on of trucks Some hundreds to the and throwing fled in their possessions anyhow. will much less the ordinary Indian coolie. first rails them stopped the passing train by throwing themselves on the in front of the engine.

VI THE REIGN OF TERROR workmen who had had It 73 those sufficient courage to to see remain. into roofs which they descended at night. Every good-sized tree in ." and girders anywhere for safety while some even went so far as to dig pits inside their tents. was a strange and amusing sight these shelters perched on the top of water-tanks. covering the top over with heavy logs of wood. "PERCHED ON THE TOP OF WATER-TANKS.

74 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO camp had that CH. to pay . Fortu- nately for them. a victim had already been secured. and the brutes were too busy devouring him attention to anything else. hurling remember one night its terror-stricken load of shrieking coolies close to the very lions they were trying to avoid. so many men swarmed on to one particular tree that down it came with a crash. when the camp was attacked. vi the as many beds bear lashed on to it as its I branches would and sometimes more.

asking him to come up and assist paign against the lions. Whitehead. train was due I at Tsavo about six o'clock in the evening. and informed me that there was no sign of the train or of the railway staff. the District Officer. but that an enormous lion was standing on the This extraordinary story I did station platform. me in my cam- and to bring with him any of his askaris (native soldiers) that he could spare. the "boy" camp.CHAPTER VII THE DISTRICT OFFICER'S NARROW ESCAPE SOME I little time before the flight of the workmen. not believe in the least. so sent my "boy" up to the station to meet him and to help in carrying his baggage to the In a very short time. to had written Mr. which His turned out to be the day after the exodus. however. He replied accepting the invitation. as by this time the coolies never remarkable for bravery were in such a . and told me to expect him about dinner-time on December 2. rushed back trembling with terror.

The only conclusion I could come to was that they had pounced upon some poor un- . as he did not put in an appearance. concluded that he must have postponed his journey until the next day. or even a dog. after settling down at my post. as state. as I was surprised to and purring and had heard no commotion bitter in the camps. Later in the evening. or a baboon. they caught sight of a hyaena. Whitehead. and that both stationmaster and signalman had been obliged to take refuge from one of the man-eaters by locking themselves in the station building. they were state of fright that sure to imagine it was a lion . they had found to eat. but I eventually. and experience that every meal the brutes obtained from us was announced by shrieks I knew by and uproar. rifles During the meal I heard a but paid no attention to them. and so had my dinner in my customary solitary couple of shots. I hear the man-eaters growling crunching up bones about seventy yards from the I could not understand what crib. I waited some little time for Mr. I went out as usual took up to watch for our elusive foes. and my had position in a crib built made of sleepers which which I I on a big girder close to a camp Soon thought was likely to be attacked. in the bush. but I found out next day that it was an actual fact.76 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO if CHAP. were constantly being fired off in the neighbourhood of the camp.

There they As soon them." which prevented me from seeing them. devouring and to retire quietly over a slight "I TOOK UP MY POSITION IN A CRIB MADE OF SLEEPERS. as it was daylight. . and in the took as careful aim as was possible . to I After a time was able make out their eyes glowing in the darkness. finished their meal at their ease. I got out of I my crib and went towards the place where had I last heard On the way. looking very pale and ill. and generally dishevelled. Mr. circum- stances and fired the but the only notice they paid to carry off shot was to whatever they were rise.vii DISTRICT OFFICER'S NARROW ESCAPE I 77 suspecting native traveller. whom should meet but my missing guest. Whitehead.

For answer he turned round and showed me back." was " I his only reply. I " in Nonsense." said Whitehead. That what's up ? asked. " " Why. showing red and angry through the torn cloth. It had made him considerably got from him the whole story of the events of the night. " " Why didn't you turn up to dinner last night " ? A nice reception you give a fellow when you invite him to dinner. nearly did for " it ! infernal lion of yours me last night. his sergeant of askaris. from which the track to small cutting. " is it ? he asked. I and bathed and dressed wounds and when more comfortable. have you come from?" I exclaimed. Without further parley. so that it was quite dark when he arrived at Tsavo Station. and on the flesh there were four great claw marks. off to my I tent. I hurried his him . His clothing was rent by one huge tear from the nape of the neck downwards. All went well until they were He about half-way through the gloomy . my camp lay through a was accompanied by Abdullah. appeared that his train was very late.78 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO "Where on earth CHAP. who walked close behind him carrying a lighted lamp. " his That's not much of a dream. you must have dreamed cried astonishment.

a lion the bank. and instantly fired. but the next instant the brute for like lightning pounced with on the unfortunate Abdullah. knocking a ninepin. suddenly jumped down upon them from Whitehead over in high bank. "). As the lion was dragging him over fired again. The flash and the loud report must have dazed the the manner had WHITEHEAD ON A TROLLEY AT THE EXACT SPOT WHERE THE LION JUMPED UPON HIM. he had his carbine with him. simba" ("Oh. Whitehead but without effect. off. was: "Eh.vii DISTRICT OFFICER'S when one of the like I NARROW ESCAPE lions 79 cutting. whom he at once made All that the poor fellow could say Master. the Fortunately. and tearing his back seen. enabling Whitehead to disengage himself. lion a second or two. . Bwana. however.

8o THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. December the forces arrayed . lions unfortunate man whom I had heard the devouring during ABDULLAH AND HIS TWO WIVES. Whitehead himself had a marvellous escape his wounds were happily not very deep. On the same day. the night. and little caused him or no inconvenience afterwards. It into the darkness this was. . of course. and the brute quickly disappeared with his prey. 3.

and were each armed with a with plenty of ammunition. whose fame had by this time the most elaborate pre- spread far and wide. Mr. Farquhar. Whitehead sharing my post on the girder. the Superintendent of Police. arrived from the coast with a score of sepoys to assist in hunting down the man-eaters. Nothing happened until about nine o'clock. Instead of doing so. Mr. they were so terrified when he rushed Q in .vii DISTRICT OFFICER'S NARROW ESCAPE 81 against the lions were further strengthened. rifle. however. my trap was put in thorough installed working order." I thought. as bait. They had also been given strict orders to shoot at once if a lion should enter the trap. at least of the brutes is done for. and cautions were taken. "one trap clattering down. and each of these guarded a likely spot in the same way. preparations were quite complete by nightall took up our appointed positions. and two of the sepoys were Our fall. The Martini bait-sepoys had a lamp burning inside their part of the cage. his men being posted on the most convenient trees near every camp. Several other officials had also come up on leave to join in the chase. lion inside the crib Further. in spite of some chaff. when to great satisfaction and we my the intense stillness was suddenly broken by the noise of the door of the "At last." But the sequel was an ignominious one.

a not morning unduly dejected. Of the . indeed. and when hunt was at once arranged. as they could have put the is. minutes not. Whitehead and I were at right angles to the direction in which they should have shot. fire. but it and always will be. and began madly against the bars of the cage. Still we were came. until Mr. kill him several times over complete mystery to muzzles of their rifles absolutely touching his body. Altogether they fired over a score of shots. but though we heard their growls from time to time. thus allowing our How they failed to prize to make good his escape. whose post was close by. Then when at last they did begin to they fired with a vengeance anywhere. and in the end succeeded only in blowing away one of the bars of the door. Farquhar. some blood scattered about the trap. we never succeeded in actually coming up with them. was small consolation to know that the certain. that they completely lost their heads and Not for some were actually too unnerved to fire. indeed. and yet their bullets came whizzing all round us. whose capture and death seemed so had only been slightly wounded. anyhow.82 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO to lash himself CHAP. Accordingly we spent the greater part of the day on our hands and knees following the lions through the dense thickets of thorny jungle. There was. brute. shouted at them and cheered them on did they at all recover themselves. a me.

only Farquhar managed to catch a momentary glimpse of one as it bounded over a bush. A PARTY OF \VA JAMOUSI. district.vii DISTRICT OFFICER'S NARROW ESCAPE 83 whole party. Two and days more were spent with equal in . and once again I was left alone with the man-eaters. Whitehead also departed for his the coast. unsuccess and Farquhar and his sepoys were obliged to return to Mr. the same then manner. G 2 .

I saw a Swahili running excitedly ! " towards me. shouting out " Simba ! Simba / (" Lion Lion "). but being foiled in this had seized and killed one of the donkeys. On questioning him I found that ! the lions had tried to snatch a man from the camp by the river.CHAPTER VIII THE DEATH OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER A as I DAY or two after the departure of my allies. I started most carefully to stalk the lions. led by the Swahili. was leaving my boma soon after dawn on December 9. and were at that moment busy devouring it not far off. Now was my I chance ! rushed for the heavy rifle which Farquhar had kindly left with me for use in case an opportunity such as this should arise. and every now and again looking behind him as he ran. when unfortunately my . and. their who. make out the outline of one of them through the dense bush. were I confining attention strictly to their meal. and could just was getting on splendidly. I devoutly hoped.

CH. vin

DEATH OF THE

FIRST

MAN-EATER

85

The wily beast guide snapped a rotten branch. heard the noise, growled his defiance, and disappeared in a moment into a patch of even thicker
jungle close by.
his escaping

In desperation at the thought of

me

once again,

I

crept hurriedly back

camp, summoned the available workmen and told them to bring all the tom-toms, tin cans and
to the

other noisy instruments of any kind that could be
found.

As

quickly as possible

I

posted them in

a half-circle round the thicket, and gave the head jemadar instructions to start a simultaneous beating
of the tom-toms
I I

and cans as soon as he judged that had had time to get round to the other side.
found a

then crept round by myself and soon

good position and one which the lion was most likely to retreat past, as it was in the middle of a
broad animal path leading straight from the place I where he was concealed. lay down behind
a small ant
I

and waited expectantly. Very soon heard a tremendous din being raised by the
hill,

advancing
to

line of coolies,

and almost immediately,
It

my

intense joy, out into the open path stepped
lion.

a huge maneless o during had a
all

was the

first

occasion
I

these trying months upon which

had

fair

chance at one of these brutes, and
the

my

satisfaction at

prospect

of bagging

him was

unbounded. Slowly he advanced along the path, stopping I was only every few seconds to look round.

86

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
from view, and
if

CHAP.

partially concealed

his attention

had not been so
him,

fully

occupied by the noise behind

he must have observed me.
to

As he was
I

oblivious

my

presence,

however,

let

him
me,

approach to within about fifteen and then covered him with my rifle.
I

yards

of

The moment

moved to do this, he caught sight of me, and seemed much astonished at my sudden appearance,
for

he stuck his forefeet into the ground, threw himself back on his haunches and growled savagely.

As

I

covered his brain with
I

my

rifle,

i

felt

that

at last

had him absolutely at my mercy, but I .... never trust an untried weapon pulled and to my horror heard the dull snap the trigger,
!

that tells of a misfire.

Worse was

to follow.
this

I

was so

taken

aback
that

and disconcerted by
I

untoward accident
the
left

entirely

forgot
rifle

to

fire

barrel,

and
the

lowered the

from
if

my
I

shoulder

with

intention of reloading

should be given time.

Fortunately for me,

the

lion

was

so

distracted

by the terrific din and uproar of the coolies behind him that instead of springing on me, as might have been expected, he bounded aside into the jungle
again.
just as

By

this

time
I

I

had

collected

my

wits,

and

he jumped

let

him have the

left barrel.

An
;

answering angry growl told me that he had been hit but nevertheless he succeeded once more in getting
clear away, for although
I

tracked him for some

little

vm

DEATH OF THE
I

FIRST

MAN-EATER
in

87

distance,

eventually lost his

trail

a rocky patch

of ground.
Bitterly did
I

anathematise the hour

in

which

I

on a borrowed weapon, and in my disappointment and vexation I abused owner, maker, and
relied
rifle

had

with fine impartiality.
I

On

extracting the un-

exploded cartridge,
that the

found that the needle had not
;

struck home, the cap being only slightly dented

so

whole

fault did

indeed

lie

with the
polite

rifle,

which

I

later returned to

Farquhar with

comill-

pliments.

Seriously, however,
;

my

continued
result

luck was most exasperating
the Indians were

and the

was

that

more than ever confirmed
were

in their

belief that the lions

really evil spirits,

proof

against mortal weapons.
to bear

Certainly, they did

seem

charmed

lives.

After this dismal

failure

there was, of

course,

nothing to do but to return to camp.
so,

Before doing

however,
I

which

proceeded to view the dead donkey, found to have been only slightly devoured
I

at the quarters.

It is

a curious fact that lions always

begin at the

tail

of their

towards the head.

As

prey and eat upwards their meal had thus been
I

interrupted evidently at the very beginning,

felt

pretty sure that one or other of the brutes would

return to the carcase at nightfall.

Accordingly, as
at hand,
I

there

was no

tree of

any kind close
feet

had a

staging erected

some ten

away from the body.
feet

This mac han was about twelve

high and was

88

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
into the

CHAP.

composed of four poles stuck
inclined

towards each

other at

ground and the top, where a
Further, as

plank was lashed to serve as a
the nights were
still

seat.
I

pitch dark,

had the donkey's

carcase secured by strong wires to a neighbouring

stump, so that the lions might not be able to drag it away before I could get a shot at them.

At sundown,

therefore,

I

took up

my

position on

my

airy perch,

and much
I

to the disgust of

my

gun-

I decided to go alone. would gladly have taken him with me, indeed, but he had a bad cough, and I was afraid lest he should make

bearer,

Mahina,

any involuntary noise or movement which might Darkness fell almost immediately, and spoil all.
everything became extraordinarily still. The silence of an African jungle on a dark night needs to be

most impressive, especially when one is absolutely alone and isolated from one's fellow creatures, as I was then. The
experienced to be realised
;

it

is

solitude
all

and

stillness,

had

their effect

and the purpose of my vigil, on me, and from a condition of
I

strained expectancy

gradually

fell

into a

dreamy

mood which harmonised
Suddenly
I

well with

was

startled out of
:

snapping of a twig
further sound,
I

and,
I

my surroundings. my reverie by the straining my ears for a
the
bush.

fancied

could hear the rustling of

a large body forcing
"

its

way through

The

man-eater,"

to-night

my

thought to myself; "surely luck will change and I shall bag
I

vin

DEATH OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER
of

89

one

the
;

brutes."
I

Profound

succeeded

sat

on

my
to

eyrie like

again a statue, every

silence

nerve tense with excitement.
ever,
all

Very soon,
of

howlion

doubt as

the

presence

the

was

dispelled.

sign of hunger
rustling

deep long-drawn sigh sure came up from the bushes, and the

A

In

commenced again as he cautiously advanced. a moment or two a sudden stop, followed by an
told
I

angry growl, and noticed
;

me

that

my

presence had been

began

to fear that

disappointment

awaited

me
;

once more.
matters quickly took an unexpected turn.
the

But no

The

hunter became

hunted

;

and instead of
prepared

either

making

off or

coming

for the bait

for him, the lion

began

stealthily to stalk

me

!

For

about two hours he horrified

me by

slowly creeping

round and round

my

crazy structure,

gradually

Every moment edging his way nearer and nearer. I expected him to rush it and the staging had not been constructed with an eye to such a possibility.
;

one of the rather flimsy poles should break, or if the lion could spring the twelve feet which separated
If

me from
and

the ground
I

.

.

.

the thought was scarcely
to feel distinctly "creepy,"
folly in

a pleasant one.

began

heartily repented

my

having placed myI

self in

such a dangerous position.

kept perfectly
:

still, however, hardly daring even to blink my eyes but the long-continued strain was telling on my

nerves,

and

my feelings may

be better imagined than

9o

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO

CHAP.

described

when about midnight suddenly something
and struck
I

came
For
a

flop

me on

the back of the head.
I

moment
I

was so

terrified that

nearly

fell

off

the plank, as

me

thought that the lion had sprung on from behind. Regaining my senses in a second or
I

by nothing more an owl, which had doubtless misformidable than
two,
realised that
I

had been

hit

taken

me

for

the branch

of a tree

not a very

alarming thing to happen in ordinary circumstances, I admit, but coming at the time it did, it almost

The involuntary start which I could paralysed me. not help giving was immediately answered by a
sinister

growl from below.
I

again kept as still as I could, though and in a absolutely trembling with excitement
;

After this

short while

I

heard the lion begin to creep
I

stealthily

towards me.

could barely

make

out his form as
;

he crouched among the whitish undergrowth but I saw enough for my purpose, and before he could

come any
trigger.

nearer,

The

took careful aim and pulled the sound of the shot was at once followed
I

by a most

terrific

roar,

and then
I

I

could hear him

leaping about in

all

directions.

to see him, however, as his

was no longer able first bound had taken

him

into

the thick bush

;

but to

make assurance

doubly sure, I kept blazing away in the direction in which I heard him plunging about. At length came a series of mighty groans, gradually subsiding into

deep

sighs,

and

finally

ceasing altogether

;

and

I

felt

vni

DEATH OF THE

FIRST

MAN-EATER
who had

91

convinced that one of the "devils"

so

long harried us would trouble us no more.

As soon

as

I

ceased

firing,

a tumult of inquiring

voices was borne across the dark jungle from the

men

in

camp about a quarter
I

of a mile away.

I

shouted back that

was
:

safe

and sound, and that

one of the

lions

was dead
all

cheer went up from
astonished
around.
the

whereupon such a mighty the camps as must have
jungle for miles
lights twinkling

denizens of the
I

Shortly

saw scores of
:

through the bushes

and with

camp turned out, tom-toms beating and horns blowing came
every
in

man

running to the scene.

They surrounded my

eyrie,

and

to

my amazement

prostrated themselves on the

" ground before me, saluting me with cries of Mabarak ! Mabarak!" which I believe means "blessed

one

"

or

"

saviour."
to

All the same,

I

refused to allow
for the

any search
the
lion, in
it

be made that night

body of
;

case his companion might be close by

besides,

was possible

that he might be
last spring.

still

alive,

and capable of making a

Accordingly

returned in triumph to the camp, where great remainder of the rejoicings were kept up for the

we

all

night,

the

Swahili

and

other

African

natives

celebrating the occasion by an especially wild and

savage dance.

For

my

part,
it

I

anxiously awaited the
light
I

dawn

;

and

even before

was thoroughly
I

was on

my

way

to the eventful spot, as

could not completely

I in front of me. and bore me in triumph really and truly stone-dead. shoulder-high round the dead body. persuade myself that even yet the "devil" might not have eluded me in some uncanny and mysterious way. and I was relieved so to find that my luck after playing me many I exasperating tricks had really turned at for last.92 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. had scarcely traced the blood more than "HIS LENGTH FROM Til' OF NOSE TO TIP OF TAIL WAS NINE FEET EIGHT INCHES. Happily my fears proved groundless. On looking satisfied myself that he was whereupon my followers crowded round. seemingly a spring. to see a I was startled alive closer." a few paces when. laughed and danced and shouted with joy like children. These thanks- . huge lion right and crouching for however. on rounding a bush.

: of the death of one of the notorious soon spread far and wide over the telegrams of congratulation came pouring and scores of people flocked from up and down the railway to see the skin for themselves. . only blemish was that the skin was much scored by the boma thorns through which he had so often forced his way in carrying off his victims. HEAD OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER. I examined the body and found that two bullets had taken effect one close behind the left shoulder. his length tail from of nose to tip of was nine feet eight inches. and it The took eight men to carry him back to camp. The news man-eaters country in.vin DEATH OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER 93 giving ceremonies being over. evidently penetrating the heart. and the other in the off hind leg. prize The was indeed one tip to be proud of. he stood three feet nine inches high.

hearing of this occurrence. hearing the coolie. Only a still at large. attempt come out in Thus disappointed human flesh.CHAPTER IX THE DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER IT this must not be imagined that with the death of lion our troubles at Tsavo were at an end his . noise and was a drunken but. attempt to obtain a meal of the lion seized a couple of the Inhis spector's goats and devoured them there and then. with a convenient loophole in it On for firing . Fortunately there was a vacant iron shanty close at hand. thinking " it The " ! Inspector. I determined to sit up the next night near the Inspector's bungalow. companion was to and very soon began make us unpleasantly aware of the fact. climbing up the steps of his bungalow and prowling round the verandah. Go away to shouted angrily fortunately for him. few nights elapsed before he made an attempt get at the Permanent to Way Inspector. did not or to open the door.

did not press his on throwing stones into the bushes where : The charge home we had that last seen him. about a quarter of a mile away.CH. when at last the lion turned up. and we soon came up. at the all. He was concealed in some bush and growled angrily on hearing our approach we got closer. and however. meal. Mr. a half-length of night passed weighing about 250 The un- eventfully until just before daybreak. off. rushing through In the bushes at a great party an instant. 95 from and outside this I placed three to full-grown rail. I often longed for a flash- Next morning I started off in pursuit and was I found joined by some others from the camp. on such occasions. pace. ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER . that the trail of the goats and rail was easilyfollowed. he suddenly made a finally. pounced on one of the goats and made off with rail it. as charge. same time dragging I away in his the others. direction. every man of the scrambled hastily up the nearest tree. stood steadily by me throughout. goats as bait. and it fired several shots but was pitch dark I and quite impossible to see anything. so hitting light only succeeded in one of the goats. we guessed by the silence he had slunk We therefore advanced . with the exception of one of my assistants. Winkler. to where the lion was at his still busy thick . who brute. tying them Ibs.

I I grasped my double smooth-bore. my I position on it before On this occasion brought my gun-bearer. on he getting up to the place us. I was just dozing off comfortably when suddenly I felt my arm seized. but could use and I he was out of sight among the bushes. cautiously. for In I few moments the was I rewarded. having spent so many nights on the look-out. Thinking that in all probability the lion would return as usual to finish his meal. the I open and pass almost directly beneath both barrels practically together into his shoulder. as watched spot where expected the lion to appear. which had charged with a slug. I Nevertheless was confident of getting him in . as was by time worn out for want of sleep. and took up dark. and to my joy could see him go fired down under I the the force of the blow. strong scaffolding put up a few feet had a very away from the I dead goats. "S/ier/" ("Lion!") all was he whispered. Quickly before I reached it. discovered had indeed escaped leaving two of the goats scarcely touched. in and on looking up saw Mahina pointing the direction of the goats. for magazine rifle. this to take a turn at watching. there was a rustling among the bushes and I saw him stealthily emerge into us. I and waited patiently. had to fire after him quite at random. I Mahina.96 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO and that CHAP.

and we began to hope it As that he had died of still his wounds in the bush.I.C. All the same we took every precaution at night. For over a mile there was no in difficulty following the I blood-trail. and was me delighted that one at least was dead. After number of photographs. and accordingly set out as soon as was light. he took a Office. About this time Sir Guilford Molesworth.. K. of blood sure that he had In the end. so that I was no longer able to ceased follow the spoor. H . passed through Tsavo on a tour of inspection on behalf of the Foreign for State examining the bridge and other works and expressing his satisfaction. happened. hunt proved fruitless. felt and as he had rested several times been badly wounded. there was no sign of our enemy for about ten days after this. thoroughly sympathised with us in all the trials had endured from the man-eaters. When I he asked I me if I expected to get the second lion soon.E. however.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER 97 the it morning. his half-doubting smile as I well remember rather too confidently asserted that hoped to bag him also in the course of a few days. one to or two of which he has kindly allowed He we reproduce in this book. late Consulting Engineer to the Govern- ment of India Railways. for my after a time the traces and the surface of the ground became rocky.

as while climbing perch I very nearly put my hand on a venomous snake which was lying coiled round one up to my of the branches. I kept watch until about 2 a. but the man-eater had evidently prowled about for some time.. As may be imagined. as the moon was hidden by dense clouds and it was the effect that a lion absolutely impossible to see anything . . but one of my men managed to despatch it with a long pole. for we found in the morning that he had gone right into every one of their tents. apparently had the desired effect. The night began badly. I was sud- denly aroused by terrified shouts from my trolley men. for the men were not further molested that night . I The following evening same tree. and least list.m. in took up my position in this the hope that he would make another attempt. as otherwise at to the one more victim would have been added For on the night of December 27. I came down again very quickly. more than a yard in front of one so all I could do was to fire off a This few rounds just to frighten the brute away. to was trying to get at them. when I roused Mahina to take his turn. It would have been madness to have gone out. who slept in a tree close outside my boma. For was clear and cloudless. Fortunately the night and the moon made everything almost as bright as day. and round the tree was a regular rin<r c? of his footmarks. was fortunate that we did so.98 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO it CHAP.

I too could discover nothing unusual. The ground was H 2 . I was about to lie back again." something move a bushes. was on the alert. and had seen nothing and al. however.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER I 99 about an hour tree. with only a small bush every here and there and from our position it was a most fascinating sight to watch this great brute stealing stealthily round us. I Only I half satisfied. though I looked carefully round us on all sides. cautiously stalking us. open round our tree. ing that something was wrong. little way off among the low On I seconds. slept peacefully with my back to the and then woke suddenly with an uncanny feelMahina. gazing intently at the spot for a few found I was not mistaken. when fancied saw ' I UK FOLLOWING EVENING I TOOK UP MY POSITION IN THIS SAME TREE. taking fairly . It was the man-eater.

could see the man-eater glaring out in our direction. I at once took careful aim and fired. and showing his tusks in an angry snarl. His advantage of every bit of cover as he came.TOO THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. however. Instantly he sprang out and made a most determined charge clown on us. and another growl told also taken effect. I fired again and knocked him over . for with a fierce growl he turned off with great long bounds. while Mahina followed immediately behind with a Martini carbine. was heard right of Looking cautiously through the bushes. I him this accordingly waited away he got quite close about twenty yards and then fired my '303 at his chest. skill showed that he was an old hand at the terrible game undue of man-hunting risk of losing until : so I determined to run no time. Splashes of blood being quickly . but in a second . but unfortunately had no knock-down and made effect. I- Before he to disappeared from sight. I heard it the bullet strike him. plentiful. so that was free to keep a good look-out. three managed have more shots at him from the magazine rifle. we were able to get along and we had not proceeded more than a quarter of a mile through the jungle when suddenly in front I a fierce warning growl us. me that the last of these had We first awaited daylight with impatience. I I took a native tracker with me. and at the glimmer of dawn we set out to hunt him clown.

however. I at over and lay motionless. and this time well on their there way up a nothing to loss of time tree. biting savagely at a branch which had fallen to the ground. he Rather foolishly. however. A had no apparent so I put out it. late. and died gamely. once scrambled down from the tree and walked up to- wards him. To my surprise and no little alarm he jumped up and attempted another charge. his had barely time reach before he arrived was. time. a This Martini bullet in the chest and another in the head finished in his tracks him for good and all . In the circumstances suit.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER me 101 he was up once more and coming for lie as fast as third shot could in his crippled condition. leg. Martini. he dropped away from me. effect. the brute would most certainly Even as it swing myself up out of the foot of the tree. den charge had proved too both he and the carbine were by The terror of the sudmuch for Mahina. was do but follow : which I did without and but for the fact that one of my shots had broken a hind have had me. hoping to stop him with my hand for the To my dismay. fired fell and the first shot for from it seemed to give him his quietus. attracted . not five yards By this time all the workmen in camp. I to at When the lion found he was too . it was not there. he started I to limp back to the thicket but by this time had I seized the carbine from Mahina.

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. feet six- inches from of nose to tip of and stood . AND STOOD THREE FEET ELEVEN AND A HALF INCHES HIGH. which was less close at hand. On examination we found no in than six bullet holes little I the body. I had the lion carried to my boma. and so great was their resentment against the brute who had it killed such numbers of their comrades that I was only with the greatest difficulty that restrain them from tearing the dead body to Eventually. tip He measured nine tail. had arrived on the scene." and coolies. and embedded only a way in the flesh of the which had fired back was the slug into him from the scaffolding about ten days previously. by the sound of the firing. amid the wild could pieces. rejoicings of the natives "HE MEASURED NINE FEET SIX INCHES FROM TIP OF NOSE TO TIP OF TAIL.

present you with this bowl as a token of our gratitude to you for your bravery in killing . skin was disfigured by being deeply scored all over by the " boma thorns. : won trophy. as they did. and much to my relief work was resumed and we were never again troubled It was amusing.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER feet 103 three as in eleven case and a half inches high the . indeed. the coolies who had absconded actually travelled from came flocking back to Tsavo. in As the poem relates our troubles somewhat quaint and it biblical language. and natives up and down the line to have a " look at my trophies and at the devil-killer ". after I had killed the two Instead of wishing to murder me. to notice by man-eaters. The bowl shall always consider hardest follows SIR. Timekeepers. Best of all. as well as with a long poem \\ ritten in Hindustani describing all our trials and my ultimate victory. Mistaris and Workmen. most highly prized and The inscription on it reads as my We. your Overseer. and as a token of their gratitude they presented me with a beautiful silver bowl. but. as they called me. The news of the death of the second " devil soon spread far and wide over the country. the change which took place in the attitude of the workmen towards me lions. once they could not now do enough for me. the of his companion. I have given a translation of I in the appendix.

conditions. Overseer and Clerk of Works. the late " Lord Salisbury said of the works were put a stop to for three weeks because a party of man-eating lions The whole in appeared the taste locality and conceived a most the unfortunate for our porters. BaboO PURSHOTAM HURJEE PURMAR. probably unique among wild animals. and rid until we found an enthusiastic sportsman to get of these our enterprise was seriously hindered. January 30. two man-eating thereby saving us from the fate by these terrible monsters who nightly broke into our tents and took our fellow-workers from our side. At last labourers entirely declined to go on unless they were guarded by an iron entrenchment. your own life. We Your grateful servants. 1899. Dated Before at Tsavo. of being devoured we all add our prayers for your long life. " I leave the subject of the man-eaters of that these two Tsavo. Sir. of having been specifically referred to in the House of Lords by the Prime Minister of the difficulties day. Speaking of the in which had been of encountered the construction the : Uganda Railway." . on behalf of your Workmen. Of course it is difficult to work a railway under these lions." it may be of interest to mention lions possess the distinction. happiness and prosperity.104 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO lions at great risk to CHAP. In presenting you with this bowl. shall ever remain.

but the wily man-eaters would not touch them. back. It is curious that the Tsavo lions were not killed by poison. and with effect." taken : from which the following extracts are parallel to the story of the lions which the rebuilding of Samaria must occur to stopped everyone. If the whole body of lion anecdote. and much preferred live men to dead donkeys. the story of these two beasts. for strychnine is easily 1 Poison may have been used used. both in American and West Central The that poison was tried. armed or unarmed. 1 I may mention . . in savageness or in sheer insolent contempt for man.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER Also. but without effect. from the days of the Assyrian Kings till the last year of the nineteenth century. carcases of transport animals which had died from the bite poisoned of the tsetse fly were placed in likely spots. " To what a distance the whole story carries us . had an the article "The Lions that Stopped Railway. 1900. for its powers are employed with strange skill by the men in the tropical forest. it would not equal in tragedy or atrocity. and if the Samaritans had quarter as " The good cause their for their fears as had the railway coolies. wish to propitiate the local deities is easily understood. white or black. 105 The Spectator of March entitled 3. and impossible the survival of primitive foe ! how it becomes to account for as his For fire main safeguard against the carnivora these cared nothing. early in against this kind of which has hitherto been regarded man the history of man. . were collated and brought together.

in addition to scores of unfortunate African natives of whom no official record was kept. Mr.io6 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO But there is CH. or some champion. no evidence that the old inhabitants of Europe. the story of the Tsavo River we can appreciate their. and was in itself a title to be a ruler of men. It was not the sport but the duty of Kings. the dragon-slayer. or of Assyria or Asia Minor. they had devoured between them no less than twenty-eight Indian coolies. laying their heads on his feet. as the hurrying crowds fell prostrate in the midnight forest. as the shout went on from camp to camp first lion was dead. Patter- no common way what it was to have been a hero and deliverer in the days when man was not yet undisputed lord of the creation. this the all lion killer . to kill these monsters for them. George. and the Africans danced savage and ceremonial dances of thanksgiving. ever killed lions or wolves by this means. They looked to the King or chief. who cleared the roads of beasts St." son must have realised in Well had the two man-eaters earned all this fame. and class robbers . services to man even at this distance of time. and the rest of their owed to their everlasting fame. From When the jungle twinkled with hundreds of that the lamps. Hercules. and might pass at any moment under the savage dominion of the beasts. . Theseus. ix Africa.

ETION. and the bridge over the Tsavo rapidly neared completion. the question of briskly. so work and improvised a shears made of a couple of thirty-foot rails." CHAPTER X THE COMPLETION OF THE TSAVO \ViiF."THE BRIDCE OVER THE TSAVO RAPIDLY NEARED COMl'I. work went on how to lift the large stones into their positions had to be solved.x all IJKIlMIE the excitement had died down and there was no longer any dread of the man-eaters. I We set to possessed no cranes for this purpose. As the piers and abutments progressed in height. These were at a distance of bolted together at the top. while the other ends were fixed about ten feet apart in a .

and without the difficulty.io8 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO block of CHAP. Great wooden beams were stretched across from the stone piers to these cribs. next business The w as r to span the sixty-foot "THE HEAVY STONKS WERE SWUNG INTO POSITION. so that in a very short time masonry of the bridge was completed. This contrivance acted and by manipulation of ropes and pulleys the heavy stones were swung into position quickly capitally. large wood. and laid with rails . and the . distance between the piers with iron girders. built up crib-shape of wooden sleepers. As I had neither winches nor to haul these over into sufficient blocks and tackle to position. I was driven erect temporary piers in the middle of each span.

" .x COMPLETION OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE 109 'THE GIRDER WAS RUN OVER ITS EXAC TJZPLACE." AND FINALLY LOWERED GENTLY INTO POSITION.

and very soon had the satisfaction of seeing the first train cross the finished work.no girder THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO was run over its it CHAP. a tremendous rain-storm broke . It had been brought up from was next were "jacked" up from the which hauled away empty. while still on the trucks in which the coast. "VERY SOON i HAD THE SATISFACTION OK SERINS THE CROSS THE FINISHED WORK." FIRST TRAIN- girder was thus successfully placed. trucks. exact place. the temporary bridge was dismantled. no time was lost I in linking up the permanent way. bridge had been only a day or so after the completed and the intermediate cribs cleared away. Curiously enough. and the girder When the last finally lowered gently into position.

soon flooding its banks and becoming a raging murky torrent. and standing on my bridge. I watched expectantly for the two temporary TIffi COMPLETED TSAVO BRIDGE. it will in be remembered. trolley bridges which. I w ait r .x COMPLETION OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE in over the country. tearing up trees by the roots and straws. whirling them along like Steadily higher and higher rose the flood. for long to soon caught sight of a solid mass of Nor had palm stems and railway sleepers sweeping with almost irresistible force round the bend of the river . we order to bring stone had built across the stream and sand to the main work to give way before the I ever-rising volume of water. The river started to rise rapidly.

rails if it. some distance above the bridge. The impact. leaving not a vestige of the two bridges behind great that the o tree-trunks as wire. and with I an additional bank of stormy-looking water. trolley crossing it This I knew up was the debris of the the river. for the space of a held my breath moment . furthest On it came. indeed. was so were twisted round the broken they had been so tier The double and hurled of much ordinary wreckage now swept a sullen forward. itself with plunge .112 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO little CHAP. a rerrding and riving of timbers. as it actually leaped at the second frail structure there was a dull thud and ONE OF THE TROLLEY LINES AFTER THE FLOOD. and then the flood rolled on towards me.

no one dared stir out to investigate the I . it was by leopards. 113 against the cutwaters of The shock the I was great. and saw the remnant of the temporary crossings swirl through the great spans and quickly disappear on its journey to the ocean.x COMPLETION OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE my stone piers. visited These animals did a great deal of damage to the herds of sheep and goats which were kept to supply the commissariat. wild cats. Leopards especially are most destructive. never long without excitement of some When the camp was kind or another at Tsavo. but it to my immense satisfaction bridge took without a tremor. often killing simply for pleasure have always harboured animosity towards them since the night when one I wantonly destroyed a whole herd of mine. but as this was before the man-eaters startled were killed. and there was always great rejoicing when a capture was made in one of the many traps that were laid for them. hap : and not for food : and I pened at the time to have a flock of about thirty sheep and goats which I kept for food and for milk. I confess that thrill I witnessed the whole occurrence with a of pride. hyaenas. and other inhabitants of the jungle around us. not We were being attacked by man-eating lions. and which were secured at sundown in a grass hut at one corner of my boma. wild dogs. One particularly dark night we were in this by a tremendous commotion shed.

steel trap like and having a very powerful an enormous rat-trap. I accordingly left the carcases exactly as they lay. it him away. hoping to frighten these." but fire could do was to several shots in the direction of the hut. A hole had been made through this the frail wall of the shed.u4 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. I determined I . In spite of was some time before the noise again. I found every one of my sheep and goats lying stretched dead on the ground with its throat bitten through. hoped that he would return the next night make a mea* and should he do so. Nor were . but had killed them out of pure love of destruction. Darkness found everyone the in my botna on alert and listening anxiously to hear the noise the leopard would make moment he was caught in the trap. cause of the disturbance. to my intense anger. the intruder naturally thought that all I was one of the "demons. and I saw from and from the tracks all found that the author of the wholesale slaughter had been a leopard. and there. and quite if strong enough to hold a leopard his foot in it I he should put to a long stake placed this it in the opening into the shed and secured by a stout chain the driven into the ground outside. however. He had not eaten all one of the flock. to see died down and everything became still soon as it was dawn I went to the shed As what had happened. to to have my revenge.

I could see absolutely nothing . I called out that in he was dead. as some of the goats had belonged to him. tightly. had been sitting evening with I my rifle by my side and a lantern lighted. as his struggles ceased and and was still. so immediately rushed out. and shutting his eyes shots in rapid succession. for about midnight 115 we by all we heard the click of the powerful spring. who scattered rapidly to right and I left 2 . fired four ally not Natur- one of these touched the beast. but I knew the general direction in which to fire and accordingly emptied my magazine at the beast. who shouted that he too wanted revenge. leaving me in utter darkness. bringing others the lanterns in the With the came my Indian overseer. at once everyone all the boma turned place. Whereupon he levelled his revolver at the dead leopard. As we frantic approached the shed. and this so frightened the chaukidar that he fled in terror. followed by the chankidar (watchman) carrying the lamp. he kept dodging in and out through . but they caused considerable consternation amongst the onlookers. out. The and night was as black as had been the previous one. the leopard made a spring in our direction as far as the chain would allow him.x COMPLETION OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE disappointed. followed immediately I frantic roaring and plunging. As far as I could make out. the broken wall of the goat-house but in a short time my all shots evidently told.

allowed to meat. and in a very few minutes the skin had been neatly taken and the famishing natives began a ravenous meal on the raw flesh. thirty yards of me. off. chase. I and asked by means of signs to be do the job for me and then to take the of course assented to this proposal. bigger than a collie. was Tsavo Station rifle one day of these unfortunately without my when one dogs came up and stood within about He was a fine-looking beast. specimen and never had another chance of obtain- was very sorry that I as I badly wanted a . x Next morning a party of starving Wa Kamba happened to be passing just as I was about to skin the leopard. I white-tipped bushy had not brought my rifle. when really driven by hunger. and often caused great losses among our sheep and goats. and will attack anything.n6 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. Many a night have I listened to these animals hunting and harrying some poor creature of the wilds round my camp they never relinquish a . Wild dogs are also very destructive. I man at or beast. with jet-black hair and a tail.

" How- . said. interested in the different and consequently scope for this at availed myself of every opportunity of studying their manners and customs. together with a few Wa Kamba. to be really a corruption of the words but it has also been sawa kill. Still I had little district around us was practic- was of course a good number of Swahili among my workmen. The principally along the coast of British East Africa and at Zanzibar. as the ally uninhabited. those who cheat all alike. and others. They Arab are a mixed race. being fathers the descendants of Their name coast . Wa N'yam Wezi.CHAPTER XI THE SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES I HAVE always been very keenly native races of Africa. there so I soon became more or habits of less acquainted with Swahili live the these tribes. is and negro mothers. however. by some who have found them scarcely so guileless as might have been expected. Tsavo. that " is. derived from the Arabic word sudhil.

enjoying them thoroughly whenever they get the all the - SWAHILI CARAVAN PORTERS. men are as a rule of splendid physique and well qualified for the calling that the majority of them follow. chance. carrying heavy loads of provisions and trade-goods on the one journey. They are a careless. improvident people. They are away for many months at a time on these they expeditions. Their life is spent in journeying to and from the interior. the CHAP. and returning with similar loads of ivory or other products of the country. cannot spend and consequently as money on the march they . light-hearted. and are very fond of good things of this world. that of caravan porters.u8 ever that THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO may be.

fun can be bought. Many a time have I watched them 'THE OLD CARAVAN ROAD WHICH CROSSED THE TSAVO AT A FORD/' road which crossed trudging along the old caravan the Tsavo at a ford about half a mile from the here a halt was always called. and when no more return Mombasa. his load . so that thev migfht wash and bathe in the cool waters c> s railway station : of the river. they join another caravan and begin a new safari to the Great Lakes. or even beyond. to damp the spirits of the Be his life ever so hard. Nothing ever seems Swahili porter.xi SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES a 119 have their goodly to number of rupees to draw on These generally disappear with wonderful rapidity.

I remember that one day he was opening a tin of . if he were the happiest Such was my cook." and joke with his fellows as and luckiest mortal alive. he straightway forhis troubles. ever so heavy. and begins to laugh and sing \\\s "SUCH WAS MY COOK.120 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO moment it is CHAP. the off his back and he has disposed of gets all posko (food). MABRUKI. and his merry laugh was quite infectious. Mabruki.

. .xi SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES 121 THE WOMEN . WEAR A LONG. . BRIGHTLY-COLOURED CLOTH.

him he might break a tooth but he misunderstood my solicitude and gravely to stop. They have a happy knack of giving a nickname to every European with whom race. to the women entirely who are too liberally endowed be go about with bare arms and shoulders. he seized the it. or appearance. All are followers of Prophet. Mohammedan they have to do. such nickname generally making reference to something peculiar or striking in his habits.122 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO and not being able CHAP. a long called a white cotton garment. perhaps the most extraordinary-looking are the Wa Nyika. temper. biscuits for me. generous liking. folk. the people who inhabit the thorny nyika (wilder- ness) which borders on the Taru Desert. whom one cannot to be seen they help Of the many tribes which are about the railway on the way up from the coast. They . On the whole. thinking that assured me that he would not spoil the tin ! The Swahili like men wear a night-shirt. and wear a long brightly-coloured cloth which they wind tightly round their bosoms and graceful then allow to the fall to the feet. kanzu. I magnificent teeth and tugged at shouted to . to pull off the flap in his under-licl with his fingers. and the their social customs those are con- sequently much same as of any other though with a good admixture of savagedom. are a kindly.

attire "THE WOMEN ATTIRE THEMSELVES ONLY IN A SHORT KILT. My work often took me and on one of my visits. The men wear nothing the in the way of dress but a scanty and very dirty cloth thrown over the shoulders." Both men and women adorn themselves with brass chains round the neck and coils of copper and iron wire round the arms. The nearest native inhabitants to Tsavo are the Wa to Taita. away. while women is which themselves only in a short kilt tied round them very lowlat the waist. some thirty miles this place.xi SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES 123 are exceedingly ugly and of a low type. finding . who dwell in the mountains near N'dii.

and on my arrival I was not only most to hospitably entertained but was also introduced M'gogo. us. coming with After a . me to some way up the the hills. A fairly good road ran from N'dii Station to his house at the foot of the mountains. Bhawal. myself with some spare time on my hands. about four miles away. I jumped at the prospect of seeing presently off Wa Taita at home. The old fellow appeared delighted to meet me. so we started on our heavy climb.124 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. my Indian servant. who had about just come in for a shauri (consultation) some affair of State. the Head Chief of the Wa Taita. I set out to pay a long" promised visit to the District Officer. and promptly invited his kraal.

presented one of them with an orange for.MAKING poillbe IN THE HO1. however.LOWED-OUT STUMP OF A TREE. He happened . who were busily engaged in making pombe (a native fermented drink) in the hollowed-out stump of a " . but carefully doubtless as the put for it into a bag with her other treasures future investigation. where I was at once introduced to his wives. he became the centre of attraction. her child." tree. As soon women to saw Bhawal.xi SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES 125 couple of hours' steady slippery goat-path. but she did not understand what it was. it she made a wry it face and would not eat Still she did not throw away. I for on tasting it. and I was eclipsed. scramble up a steep and we arrived at M'gogo's capital.

magnificent views we obtained on The the great Kilima N'jaro effec- stood out particularly well. and this took their fancy immensely they . we emerged on the summit. or This "lion medicine".126 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. I background but to fine was surprised to find a number I of well-fed cattle on the mountain top. . the are Wa Taita exceedingly superstitious. examined every ecstasies line it most as carefully and went their into over just European sisters would have done over the latest Parisian creation. fancy casting an evil spell M'gogo thought I was over them when he saw me photographs of them as they grazed peacefully on the sweet grass which covered the taking plateau. to the top of and then started again on our journey hills. and this failing is " turned to good account by the all-powerful witchdoctor " or "medicine-man. for instance. part of through a thick black forest. it After a stiff climb for another two hours. Like most other natives of Africa. We the made a short halt for rest and refreshment. and tive made a very panorama. to the four points of the compass before lying down to sleep in the open. an extraordinary sight to see the absolute faith with which a Ki Taita will blow the simba-dawa. with lots of gold work on it. have on a new puggaree." It is. where I found I was well rewarded for my trouble all by the sides.

to is of course quite clear that the daw a that he owes his immunity. usually carried in a tiny horn stuck through a slit in the ear. more- \VA TAITA MKN. even in the midst of dis- a man-eater's trict. but the Ki Taita firmly believes that a few grains of this dust blown round the him of from the palm is hand a complete against seek- safeguard raging lions ing whom . In the nature of things. he never loses this touching faith . .xi SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES which is. they may devour after and blowing he will ceremony lie the down to sleep in perfect confidence. 127 daw a of course. the brute sees to unbeliever. that he does not live to if become an it while he it is is not attacked. obtainable only consists simply of a little from black the witch-doctor powder. in if the efficacy of the witch- doctor's charm it for he is attacked by a lion. over.

For the the Wa Taita are essentially a . while their ears are hung with pieces The men of chain and other fantastic ornaments. peace-loving and industrious people before the arrival of the British in the country. also . and. Both sexes adorn themselves with a great quantity of copper or iron wire coiled round their arms and all legs. always carry bows and poisoned arrows. The most curious custom of the tribe points. but the family huts are clustered together. Many of the men adding red clay to the women also wear dozens of rows of beads. CHAP.128 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO rest. As usual. and as a rule all live in perfect harmony. ideas of costume are rather primitive the men loins. roughly-fashioned sword) hung on a leathern thong round the waist. they hardly ever ventured fastnesses. as he can sheep or he provides each spouse with a separate establishment. down from their their mountain warlike owing for to dread of the Masai. sometimes wear a scrap of cloth round the while the women content themselves with the same or with a short kilt. their . slung on the shoulder when on the march. as well as a seemie (a short. stool is A three-legged and is an important part of their equipment. indeed. is the filing of the front teeth into sharp which gives the whole face a most peculiar diabolical and rather expression. the mixture. and smear their bodies over with grease. afford to Each man has pay in as many wives cattle .

rule. They are a very large little but have cohesion. who inhabit the Ukambani Andei tribe. During this period they several times swooped clown on isolated railway maintenance gangs and utterly annihilated them. In appearance and dress or the want of like it they are very the Wa and they have the same custom of filing Taita. when hundreds of them died of starvation. in order to obtain possession of the food which they knew would be K stored .xr SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES The next 129 people met with on the road to the Great Lakes are the Wa Kamba. and to the may be seen from M'toto Athi River.split up into many clans under who govern in a chiefs patri- archal kind of way. the front teeth. though when driven it to by hunger they will commit very cruel and treacherous acts of wholesale murder. M'KAMHA \YOMAN. a severe famine occurred in their part of the country. province. they are peace-loving people. being. As a a too. While the railway was being constructed.

flesh is The arrow-head remains is in the when the shaft withdrawn. This am glad to however. the most civilised natives in the country and the missionaries have adopted the sensible course of teaching the people husbandry and the practical arts and crafts of everyday needs. pitchy-looking essence which remains. say. the skin round the wound turning yellow and mortifying fresh. the \Va Kamba are quickly becoming . and if the poison and death very quickly follow. their only but in the use of these primitive weapons they are specially expert. paralysis deadly poison is obtained. by boiling down a particular root. life. the arrow-heads being clipped in the black. These attacks were always made by Like most other native races in East Africa. I believe. xi the camps.130 in THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. I within an hour or two. in addition to caring for their spiritual . night. that owing to the establishment of several Mission Stations amongst them. arms are the bow and poisoned arrow.

is possessed no heavy which but it almost a necessity for hippo shooting. with which I fired the ammunition.CHAPTER XII A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO DURING my to stay at Tsavo I made many little excursions into the surrounding country. so I try my luck on the banks of I Unfortunately. remember first round of my home-made As I more than I half expected that the barrel would burst. lashed the gun in the fork of a tree. and then taking shelter behind a K 2 . occurred to me to supply the deficiency by manufacturing a few cartridges for my smooth-bore. tied a piece of string a hundred feet longto the trigger. In these I had double charges of powder and a hardened bullet made I of lead well mixed with about the anxiety an eighth part of tin. go off especially anxious to to made up my mind the Sabaki. and used on a short shooting and exploring expeI was dition whenever I had the opportunity. bag a hippopotamus. rifle.

I had clamped my refilling machine the table.132 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO stump pulled off. however. cook Mabruki. had a very narrow escape one day while this manufacturing some of ammunition. and was stamping to my rough-hewn charge of double powder well down into the cartridge. found that they would smash through a steel plate an eighth of an inch thick at thirty yards' range. My plan was to remove the shot from the cartridge. and little face. for I had been blinded. More than I on trying the penetrative effect of my bullets. me I All the great confidence in the weapon. put in the additional powder. taking with me my Indian gun- bearer Mahina. CHAP. and in a few hours' time I was almost all right again and able to go on with my cartridge making. for some unknown reason. carrier). This was quite good enough for my purpose. I set out for the Sabaki. that. All my preparations having been made. that gleams of light soon began to return to my eyes. I am thankful to say. and gave same. a bhisti (waterand a couple of natives to carry our odds my . friendly To my great satisfac- tion the barrel stood the test perfectly. and replacing the ram in this well in before wad and putting the bullet. I Everything became groped my way about the hut I in thought agony of mind as well as of body. the whole charge exploded right into my pitch dark to me. when suddenly.

to their lack of a of which indeed they possess not even a vestige. and are found oreat numbers amon<r o o the rocks along the banks of the rivers. as they swing themselves from branch while birds of the most gorgeous plumage flutter about. They are not at all bad eating. foot The river has its source at the of snow-crowned Kilima N'jaro. They owing them tupu (shameless. monkeys chatter and jabber in the shade overhead to branch. things). its route lay by the always interesting Tsavo Along the banks everything within reach of moisture is delightfully fresh and green. and makes the nyika of the Tsavo valley almost intolerable. whence it . On the other hand. On these occasions I usually took no but bivouacked in the open. and other creepers. pitilessly. Our River. river. took some bread and a few tinned provisions with us. leafless trees. naked tail. thorny wilderness of Here the sun beats down stunted. . one comes immediately into the parched. but the Swahili will not touch call them. Palms festooned with brilliant flowering flourish along its course kinds of all trees. but I could always depend upon getting a paa. giving a very tropical aspect to the scene. partridge or rock-rabbit for the larder on the We march. These rock-rabbits are more in like big rats than rabbits. guineafowl.xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO ends. 133 and tent. if one is from the be it only for tempted to stray away a few yards.

however. while occasionally the sound of a splash in the water told of a wary crocodile. From this point the streams take the name of Sabaki and flow more or less eastwards until they reach the Indian Ocean at Malindi.i 34 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. We had gone about half the distance to the Sabaki when we came upon an unexpected obstacle in the shape of a great . water-buck. owing to the engaged. some seventy miles north of Mombasa. about seven miles united below Tsavo Station. Every now and again. from which we had constantly to be disone. for it was not long before we came upon fresh tracks both of hippo and rhino. A along narrow and tortuous its Masai warpath winds this trail whole length. flows for about eighty miles in a northerly direction until it joins the Athi River." overhanging branches and creepers. we caught glimpses of startled bush-buck and also. The march was full of interest. but although we followed our journey was nevertheless a very slow " UNTIL IT JOINS THE ATHI RIVER.

I could walk along in the river at the possibility of there hinted mildly being crocodiles under the that declared. and little the worse for his adventure. The I sides of this gorge went down into the water. in an instant. Luckily he had been dashed up against a rushy bank. and he was round it and out of our sight in no time. the haste Although we do at once made we could to get round the ridge of rocks. and were quite im- possible to scale. no clanger. I took us nearly half an hour to had almost given up hope of ever seeing Mahina again. which extended for about a mile or so on both banks of the sheer river. and had managed to scramble out with no more serious damage than a bruised at shin. Eventually we arrived the junction of the . the last glimpse we caught of him showing him all it vainly trying to catch hold of an overhanging branch. he tied it to his back and stepped rocky ledges. For a few minutes he was all went well.xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO J 35 ridge of barren. rugged rock. Mahina into the water. but Mahina was confident that he itself. Then. lifted right off his feet by the rush of the water and whirled away. therefore determined to make a detour round it. therefore. and was much relieved. it. and making a bundle of his there was lower garments. about a hundred feet high. The river took a sharp bend in this gorge. the river-side once more. to find safe when we reached him and sound. however.

'36 rivers THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. Several islands are dotted about tall in mid-stream and are overgrown with in reeds and all rushes.WITH TREES. As with lined the Tsavo. affording most the welcome shade from the heat of skirting the river still is sun : and a caravan road from the interior gling slaves used. trees the banks various of the Sabaki are with of kinds. and ivory to the coast. I believe. beside which the Tsavo looks very insignificant. and proceeded some way down the Sabaki." round. smugwhere dhows for are in readiness to convey them to Persia or Arabia. which hippo find capital covert the year "THE BANKS OK THE SABAKI ARE LINED. .

I left my followers encamped a safe boma a mile away from the river. which 137 Mabruki soon got in ready. first time I I had seen one of these sight. and managed to get safely over. out with Mahina to find a suitable " and tree. about. . but proany other game was We had not gone very far when Mahina. who was a little way ahead. however. signalled to me. we did not take up our station at once. side the river thing to in do it : on account a of the number of crocodiles we found fairly shallow ford.xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO After an early dinner. on what was evidently an island during flood time. picked out a tree close to the river and commanding a stretch of sand which was all flattened At length down and looked as if at least one hippo rolled there regularly every night. started near a night. we found innumerable traces of both hippo and rhino in fact the difficulty was to decide which track was the best and I freshest. As there was still about an hour before sundown. and ceeded along the bank to see if on joining him I saw a splendid-looking waterbuck standing in a shallow pool of the river. Here. fine I and was delighted with the but might have got twenty yards or so nearer. It was the antelope. hippo run ". in which to spend of the Having some difficulty in we crossed to the other rather a risky finding a likely spot.

and then turned and galloped quickly behind an island which completely hid I thought had better not risk him from view. so I aimed at the shoulder and fired. he was full of gloomy forebodthe light ings of an full unlucky night. We I waited for him to clear the rushes at the other end of this island. On the other hand. moving. an a animal wounded with a hard bullet is likely to make a speedy recovery. and had while in On anything however. by that time darkness would have incident shows the great drawback namely. he was evidently or turned off the shelter of the I reeds and so dis- gained the opposite bank. and as we trudged back through the sand to our tree. By of a splendid moon we settled ourselves on a great . bush country. nowhere to be seen. and set to in. but as he did not appear the else.138 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. Mahina was even more upset at the escape of the buck than I was. appointed at follow was keenly my : failure. which is a great blessing. him up to was impossible do so we should have had for it to to make a long detour to get across the river. an animal may manage to go far enough to be lost. got impatient and plunged into of crocodiles river. knock-down strikes a part and even then. that unless it it This '303 effect in the has very vital little . The buck gave one leap into the air. regardless rounding the island.

condition. or a rhino or hippo crash through the bushes on its way to the water : now and again we Still could there even hear the distant roar of the lion. peculiar sounds a night bird would a crocodile shut his jaws with a snap. just as to was this helpless half-way the hippo suddenly came out calmly bitterly ground. the and splashing about what seemed hours creature to to I his heart's for content. this For ungainly from his covert. great hippo made in appearance and came splashing along in our direction. the great from his shelter and lumbered lamented along right underneath me. most tantalising way. After waiting at for last some considerable his time. but as he emerge seemed determined not to show himself I lost patience and watched made up my mind handed to go down to after to him. but unfor- tunately took up his position behind a tree which. completely hid him Here he stood tooting and snorting from view. To my I intense vexation in and disappointment. Soon the jungle around us with its began to be alive call.xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO branch. holding on by the creepers lower to me which encircled the tree. . I therefore my rifle Mahina on reaching the ground. I my ill-luck and want of patience. to was nothing a be seen. 139 outspreading and commenced our vigil. and began to descend carefully.

and returned no more. but considerably startled at the thought that the hippo might come back at any moment. Then we heard lion the by. I likelihood of getting a shot at him from our foot. but he was evidently as much frightened as I was. awe-inspiring- roar of a hungry close and presently challenge a another hippo gave little forth his tooting way down the river. for could almost . traction engine. I broke the creepers by which I was holding on and landed on my back in the sand at the foot of the tree none the worse for my short drop.have touched It I his broad back as he passed. and is without doubt he looking brute I the ugliest and most forbidding have ever beheld. they far off for a shot. and dived into the bushes close by. the great beast had passed our tree. There . smashing through them like a In screwing myself round to watch him go.140 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. As there seemed no tree. I climbed up to my perch again without loss of time. made up my mind through the trees to stalk him on so we both slowly- descended from our perch and made our way in the semi-darkness. and they gradually waddled up-stream out of sight. so I did not disturb them. The moment he scented us. however. snorted loudly. conditions that was under these exasperatingsaw a hippo for the first time. Shortly after this we saw- two rhino come down were too to the river to drink .

to us made me rather anxious for our more his especially as just then he rose to feet and gave forth the peculiar challenge or call which we had already heard so often during the . In this manner. His half covered closeness safety. so we let our- selves quietly into the water. however. on the other side of which our quarry could be heard. to have a shot at him from there. us out of the shadow of the bush. not twenty-five yards away. and waded peering cautiously through the reeds at the corner of the island. only and practically facing us. so I thought the best thing to do was to attempt to get on to the island and too. and neither of us in felt am for sure that very comfortable as we . blowing directly from him. lying down in the shallow water. to find that we were again baulked by a small There was a good breeze rush-covered island.xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO I 141 were numbers of animals about. was quite our knees. was eager for the fray. Mahina. for eyes there he was. but I soon realised that on lowering my was looking too far ahead. which here shallow and reached only to slowly across. crept along the direction of the splashing hippo I my own part fancied every moment that I saw in front of me the form of a rhino or a lion ready to charge down upon pitch. I was surprised to find that I On could see nothing of the hippo I . with nerves strung to the highest only we reached the edge of the river in safety.

To staggered and fell. . glad and relieved to be in safety once more. which were rather flesh. as my first shot had been brain.142 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO All the same. good ones. and then lay quite still. to our very lucky left We one and had penetrated the him where he fell and got back perch. as he raised his head. The natives cut out the tusks of the hippo. I CH. As soon as it was daylight we were joined by my own men and by several Wa Kamba. xn night. but we found afterwards that they were not needed. fired at it. He whirled round. made a plunge forward. I gave him a couple more a bullets as he lay. and feasted ravenously on the while I turned my attention with gratitude to the hot coffee and cakes which Mabruki had meanwhile prepared. make assurance doubly sure. who had been hunting in the neighbourhood.

we a frown- N'dungu Escarpment four ing ridge which runs for a great distance parallel to the Sabaki. Mabruki was a great and by no means courageous. some three or miles from its had not gone very far before I caught sight of a fine water-buck and successfully bowled him over a good omen for the day. As we trudged along towards the hill. the Wa Kamba. careful that a it it warned him that he had better be lion did not scent the meat. but to frighten him. which northern bank. so I wanted seriously . We put us all in excellent spirits. Of course did not mean this glutton. I heard a . Mabruki cut off several strips of the tough on a sharp I stick to dry in meat and impaled them the sun as he went along.CHAPTER XIII A DAY ON THE N'l)UNGU ESCARPMENT IMMEDIATELY after breakfast and accompanied by a few of started off for the camp was struck. as if did would be I sure to follow up and kill him.

" away and straining their long necks to get at the tops of some mimosa-like trees.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. and on looking over the crest. I was delighted to see two beautiful giraffe feeding peacefully a little " I CAUGHT SIGHT OF A FINE \VATERI5UCK AM) SUCCESSFULLY BOWLED HIM OVKR. watching the . peculiar noise behind a small rising on our right. distance For some time I remained concealed. while a young one was lying down in the grass quite close to me.

RASS (JUITK CLOSE gently biting each other on the shoulders. and were slowly making ment. shoot these rather rare and I left very harmless creatures. is required for a We pushed on." IN THE C. occasionally entwining their great long necks and "A YOUNG ONE WAS LYING DOWN TO ME.xin A DAY ON THE N'DUNGU ESCARPMENT interest : 145 full-grown pair with great they had evi- dently just come up from the river. towards the escarp- . accordingly. my as I think it a pity to them undisturbed. unless one special purpose. their way back to their home on the escarp- They seemed on the most affectionate terms. as I Much should have liked to have added a giraffe to collection of trophies.

however. home tents. After a two hours' journey from the river sat panting on the summit after our scramble and sur- veyed the valley of the Tsavo. wait-a-bit thorns. was very impatient to get to the top and explore a place where I felt convinced no other From the river the white man had ever set foot. Here I found the same kind of nyika as that round . Tsavo Station and other itself. which lay spread out Our like a map about five hundred feet below us. and the railway like a shining snake. on which we could walk upright the greater part of the way. and was covered more or less densely with stunted trees " and bushes. but on way up I discovered that there was an enormous cleft some miles to the right which would probably have afforded an easier ascent. could be seen for the many miles winding its way through parched wilderness.146 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. Having taken a few photographs of we turned and struck through the N'dungu Plateau. and had the to be negotiated principally on all-fours. buildings were plainly visible. for ground rose gently upwards to the foot of the ridge. the bridge. and of course the inevitable " I was fortunate enough. the scene. explore it I had not time but I to on this particular day. ment. made we a mental note to do so on some future occasion. The climb up the escarpment itself was a stiff one. to find a rhino path which afforded a fairly comfortable and open road.

\Ve saw nothing more of the lion. lion. moreover. when suddenly we almost walked upon a lion which was lying down at the side of the path and which had probably been asleep. For about two hours we pursued our journey into L 2 . It gave a fierce growl and at once bounded off through the bush but to Mabruki who doubtless recalled then . I was leading the way. as owing rio-ht o to the tortuous nature of the path. into it we walked Like the before it we were aware. The country. though a few steps further on brought us to the remains o of a zebra .that there were more green trees about.xiu A DAY ON THE N'DUNGU ESCARPMENT 147 Tsavo. the amusement of the others. even the joining in usually silent Wa Kamba the general laughter as they scrambled for the discarded meat. the only difference being. the warning I had given him in fun earlier in the day the incident appeared so alarming that he flung his stick-load of to down much meat and fled for his life. however. which he had recently after this killed and feasted on in but rear. was somewhat more open. and charged away from us through the jungle. Mabruki enough. followed closely by Mahina and Mabruki. along which we could walk upright in comfort. and was intersected by hundreds of broad and well-beaten animal paths. kept only carefully the Curiously a short while later we had an exactly similar adventure with a rhino. was more frightened than we.

same the a eye could reach place should one be lost . however. most in it. the last being of a redder colour than those of the Tsavo valley. rhino. was necessary that no time But we had been winding in and it much through the animal paths that it was no . the only thing to do or . terrible with certain death either in by thirst the face. hopeless. wart - hog.giraffe. Of human habitations. bush-buck. by savage beasts staring one Clearly. The animals that require water have to make a nightly journey to and from the Sabaki. we saw no signs. the plateau. interspersed here and there with a few green trees not a landmark of any sort or kind as far as flat . but absolutely nothing could direction but the see in any thorny wilderness. zebra. the lesser kudu. time we were therefore in all and the bkistis I beginning to feel stock of water was the running tree I low.148 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. By very this tired. and any number of natives or of pact. and saw and heard a wonderful variety of game. then. was to return to the river and in order to accom- plish this before dark should be out so lost. and indeed the whole region was so dry and waterless as to be quite uninhabitable. baboons and monkeys. including. climbed highest could find order to have a good I look round. which accounts for the thousands of animal paths leading from the plateau to the river.

who pointed out a direction exactly I opposite to that which one. Then asked Mahma. In these circumstances. miles . even Mahina expressed grave doubts as to whether " " had taken the right direction only Sahib the . the Wa Kamba stalked along in re-assuring silence. but volunteered the helpful and cheering information that we were as to our sun. knew nothing. we trudged along the fearful object heat without striking a single familiar or landmark. however. lost and would I all be killed by lions. a couple of away from the place where we had made the Here a halt was called a sheet was spread ascent. and the great footmarks of one of these beasts were fresh and plainly visible in the dust. of course.xin A DAY ON THE N'DUNGU ESCARPMENT 149 easy matter to say in which direction the Sabaki lay. confirmed my own at once. idea way by comparing my watch and to start the and gave the order solid For in two hours. . had been following a broad white rhino path. Kamba followers as to the First I consulted my Wa route back I . and I felt sure that he must have from drinking in been returning the river. we found that we were at the edge of the escarpment. to my great relief. felt confident was the right Mabruki. Mabruki murmured loudly . direction to For some time we He had been travelling in the opposite us. I accordingly insisted on our keeping to this path. they simply shook their heads. and very soon.

and arrived at the Sabaki good time before sundown. and I turned in at once. Shortly after we started one of . the wild beasts in At dawn Mabruki roused me with a cup of steaming hot coffee and some biscuits. After this we pushed on with in renewed vigour. camp supper was ready The tireless Mahina had for also collected some dry grass my bed. CHAP. way to serve After the long and fatiguing day my bathe in a clear shady pool was a real delight. By and the time fully got back to appreciated. The place where previous we had evening was some I struck the Sabaki the miles further before. over some of the stunted and under food. having bagged a couple of guinea-fowl and a paa on the for dinner. its shade we rested for half an hour.i5o THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO trees. but in the wilds the unexpected always happening. with my rifle handy. and slept the all sleep of the just. had some and drank the last of our water. so trail I down its the stream than had ever been decided to take advantage of the Masai until the along I bank Tsavo River was reached. and a start was at once made on our return journey to Tsavo. regardless of Africa. but I might not have enjoyed it quite so much if I had known then of the terrible fate which awaited one of my followers in the I same river the next clay. with did not think we should meet any further adventure on is our way home.

however. and bow and . ran back as quickly as possible to too late. I was on ahead at the time and so did not witness the occurrence. much and the other three Wa Kamba certainly did not appear to be affected by the incident. when a crocodile suddenly rose up out of the stream. all it see any sign of either crocodile or Mahina matter philosophically remarked that after was only a washenzi (savage). whose loss did not .xin the to A DAY ON THE N'DUNGU ESCARPMENT 151 Wa Kamba fill went with down to the river's edge his calabash water. seized the poor fellow and in a moment had dragged him in. native. but on hearing the cries of the others I A CROCODILE ON THE SABAKI. but calmly possessed panion's themselves of their dead comquiver of poisoned arrows.

when the wind river after is in the right direction. He was filling his water bottle at the river. As we made our way up discovered a beautiful waterfall the Sabaki. when one of these brutes caught him by the hand and attempted to draw him in. we about a hundred' and of fifty feet high not a sheer drop. and best the thunder of the falling water can then be plainly water. xm of the he had left on the bank. . but a series this cascades. Fortunately one of his servants rushed to his assistance and pull managed to him out of the crocodile's clutches with the loss only of two of his fingers. At time the river was in low consequently did not look their but in flood time they form a fine sight. . I have since learned that accidents of this kind are of fairly frequent occurrence along the banks of these rivers. on the rocks at the head of these marching and some hours' hard reached camp without further incident. over seven miles away. We crossed the falls. On one occasion while I was in the country a British officer had a very lucky escape.152 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO stock of meat which CH. and the falls heard at Tsavo.

so on one occasion when work had been stopped material. which greatly facilitated our progress.CHAPTER XIV THE FINDING OF THE MAN-EATERS* DEN THERE were some south-west of rocky-looking I hills lying to the particularly Tsavo which was anxious to explore. we were in fortunate enough to find a rhino path leading the right direction. which I mapped out bit by bit during my explorations. accompanied by Mahina and a Punjaubi coolie. as soon as we had crossed the river and had struck into the jungle. As we were making our way along this path through the dry bed of a . for instance. On this occasion.e. " Fattie "). In the course of my little excursions round I Tsavo I gradually discovered that to was nearly always able make my way to any required point of the compass by following certain well-defined animal paths. who was so stout that he went by the name of Moota (i. I for the day owing to lack of set off for them.

I After a few I minutes of this work. I noticed of a gloomy forest.i 54 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. we proceeded on our way. trated the dense foliage. and began to have rosy dreams of a . through a break in the trees a huge rhino standing in full view near the edge of a ravine. Unfortunately he caught sight of us as well. and its : facets looked as if I they Amsterdam glass expert. and before I . a millionaire having My hopes of rapidly becoming thus been dashed to the ground. it knew seem that quartz to would do as have either the general appearance or angles of any quartz I had ever seen. This at once filled my head with thoughts of precious stones. that by an tested the stone on my watch cut cut had been and found I it my initials quite easily. happened to notice that the sandy bottom sparkled here and there where the sunbeams penenullah. came across what at first took to be a magnificent diamond sparkling in the damp sand it was about half an inch long. at the gravel with I started to dig vigorously my hunting knife. diamond mine but I am sorry to say that on closer I examination and testing clusion that was forced to the con- my find was not a diamond. this and though well. though I unlike any other mineral had ever come across. getting further and further into the depths A little distance on. and as the spot looked likely enough. For a moment or two I was greatly delighted with did not to me my discovery.

far had not gone very came upon a big bay scooped out of the bank by the stream when in flood and carpeted with when I a deposit of fine. close under an overhanging tree. so decided to enter and explore what lay beyond. I observed on my left a little nullah which opened out of the main channel through a confused mass of jungle and creeper. I stumbled upon the " demons ". this ravine. the entrance and inside the cavern I was thunder- struck to find a number of human bones. and quite by accident. I had no . stood a little sandy hillock. the man-eaters' den! manner. which I had lair of these once-dreaded spent so many days searching for through the the in- exasperating and time interminable jungle during terrorised when they Tsavo. and on looking over the top of this I saw on the other side a fearsome- looking cave which seemed to run back for a conRound siderable distance under the rocky bank. In this Beyond all doubt. Through this tangle there was a well-defined archway.xiv FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN 155 could take aim. one corner of this bay. doubtless made by I I the regular passage of rhino and hippo. soft sand. with here and there a copper bangle such as the natives wear. As I followed up walking stealthily along in the delightful shade of the overhanging palms. he snorted loudly and crashed off through the tangled undergrowth. in which were In the indistinct tracks of numberless animals.

explore the gloomy depths of the still I but thinking that there might possibly fired a shot or be a lioness or cub inside.i 56 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO to CHAP. after all my trouble. two into the cavern through a hole in the roof. then made only to discover. continued I my journey I along After a little while fancied saw a hippo among some the bank. that my eyes . THE MAN-EATERS' DEN spot. clination interior. and quickly signed to stay perfectly still. nothing came out I . Save for a swarm of bats. thankful that the !" which once inhabited Retracing it savage and insatiable brutes were no longer at large. and left after taking a photograph of the cave. gladly the horrible "BEYOND ALL DOUBT. I my steps to the main ravine. I tall rushes growing on to Mahina and Moota a careful stalk. it.

and advanced along This turned out to be a good move. flesh of and no true Mohammedan will eat the at any animal unless the throat has been cut the proper place and the blood allowed to flow. and crouching under the flying past. for soon we heard the galloping of a herd of some animal or other across our front. who rushed up in ecstasy. I rushed round a corner in the path a few yards ahead. We the bed of the ravine. This custom has often caused for me great annoyance. and as was quite close to dead. so to we selected a suitable tree in which pass the night. and This before I could stop him had cut his throat. bushes saw a line first of startled zebras This was the time I had seen these beautifully marked animals in their wild state. as he remarked. was positively sorry was done. I so I selected the largest and fired. darkness was fast approaching. Under it we built a . By the time the zebra was skinned. " to make the meat lawful. be a living animal. Mohammedan is followers rush in so quickly when an animal it shot and cut the head off so short that is afterwards quite useless as a trophy. Moota. When them he dropped in his tracks stoneI stood over the handsome creature I for Not so having killed him.xiv FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN 157 had deceived me and made me to imagine a black bank and a few rushes now left the top. however." for Moota was a devout follower of the Prophet.

He as nimble as a monkey for all his stoutness. Mahina and I which did . CHAP. I had not could get a shot approached noiselessly enough. and a leopard is too wary a beast to be caught napping. We both laughed heartily at his extraordinary haste to get out of danger. and Mahina chaffed rest of him unmercifully. and never ceased climbing until he was far above us. The and in the early morning. until. I now only about half a mile distant.158 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO fire. I had no more time at my disposal in which to . but came across nothing save here and there a paa and a few guinea-fowl. hills which I towards the rockyhad seen from Tsavo. the night passed without incident. But he was too quick for me. proved simply delicious. and which were I strolled off kept a sharp look-out for game. just as I was about half-way round the hill. however. while the boys were pre- paring breakfast. Unfortunately and made off before I . and said full he of would sleep on the ground. winded us and snorted so loudly that Moota scrambled was in abject terror up our tree. Moota was afraid of nothing. goodly made some I of quails which and roasted a couple had shot early in the day and tea. courage later He for was not so on. We then betook ourselves to the branches at least. about midnight a great rhino passed our way. I saw a fine leopard lying on a rocky ledge basking in the morning sun.

were made in a northerly direction. towards the everAfter a long and it interesting Athi or Sabaki rivers. It was an intensely hot day. 159 explore as I was anxious as to . however.xiv FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN these hills. Most of my little trips of this sort." very glad when at length we reached the home camp. resume so after work at Tsavo as soon possible breakfast we packed up the zebra skin and began to retrace our steps through the jungle. and we were all 'WATCH THE ANIMALS COME DOWN TO DRINK. tiring walk through the jungle what a pleasure was to lie up in the friendly shelter of the rushes .

on a brilliant moonlight night have sat on a rock out the middle of the stream. and here there was luckily a particularly well-defined rhino of. who were staying with me at Tsavo. took several photographs of scenes of this kind. after did not realise the risks ran but later on my poor Wa Kamba follower had been seized and dragged under. which banks. being I new . How exaspera- was. to the country. and watch the animals all come I down to drink. described I The shortest way of reaching the Athi river from Tsavo was to strike through the jungle in a north- westerly direction.160 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO line the CHAP. I At the time. when the wind changed at the critical moment. but unfortunately many in of the negatives were spoiled. too. as I have already learned to be much more cautious. I path it which I always made use discovered I quite by accident on had asked some guests. to spend a night on one occasion when . near a favourite drinking place. unconscious of my presence. the river. waiting for a shot at what- ever fortune might send ting it my way. I Often. and gave me away to the rhino or other animal I had sat there for hours patiently awaiting ! Occasionally vigil would get heartily tired of my weary and would wade ashore through the warm I water. to make my bed in the soft sand regardless snap of the crocodiles which could plainly be heard from the deeper pools up and down of the snap.

came across this well-trodden path.xiv FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN 161 the banks of the river. see if I thought not sally forth and could meet M . they returned. which appeared to lead in the direction in felt which I wished it to go. After all an hour or more. in and my enjoyed their night the open. guests greatly although one of them got rather a bad fright from a rhino which suddenly snorted close to our camp. the old rhino path proved a true guide. so when they had I down would to rest after a hearty meal. We had a delightful picnic. with confidence. evidently very annoyed at our intrusion on his domain. In the morning they went off as soon as it was the river. emptysettled I handed but very hungry . As we were making our way I slowly and painfully through the dense jungle. warned twice by the sound of our approach. followed easy. we caught glimpses of these animals as they bounded away to the shelter of the thicket. Our progress was now and the track led through fairly open glades where traces of bushbuck and water-buck were numerous indeed once or . where some lofty trees close to the bank of the river gave a most grateful and refreshing shade. however. it struck the Athi at an ideal spot for a camping ground. for In the end. as I anticipated. and as I convinced that at any rate I would bring us to it the river somewhere. while I light to try their luck along remained in camp to see to breakfast.

but as he was only some fifty fire. yards off. the antelope swinging by his feet from a branch borne by two sturdy coolies and my unlucky friends were very much astonished when they saw : the fine bag I had secured in so short a time.1 62 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO better success. with my bullet through his heart. and that he had made off through I therefore re-loaded. . On the alert. had gone only a short distance up the right bank of the river. and advanced carethe bush. The animal was soon skinned and furnished us with a delicious roast for lunch . but to my unbounded came upon the buck stretched out dead in his tracks. he disappeared his shoulder to be. when I thought I observed a movement among the bushes ahead of me. and in the cool of the evening we made our way back to Tsavo without further adventure. could only most stately make out his head and neck above the undergrowth. I lost no time in getting back to camp. so suddenly and so completely that I felt sure that I had missed him. and for the fraction of a second he stopped to gaze at at This movement me. and with the next moment was rewarded by I seeing a splendid in a bush-buck advance from the water manner. I stopped instantly. fully with the intention of following up his delight I trail . thus giving me time to aim at where I supposed When I fired. I CHAP. I raised my rifle to my shoulder to once caught his eye.

C. we were dark be again under the verandah of my hut. Art. tent. wanted something from my so. M 2 . which was only a " dozen yards Sahib. is saiip ! (" Oh. there a big snake here ") "Where?" I shouted. fetch it. This he did. he called out hai ! " frantically. and as soon as he got to the door of the tent. He was going my Indian chaukidar. to off in the dark to do "THE ANTELOPE SWINGING BY HIS FEET. hurra off. while one of these to friends (Mr. Rawson) happened sitting after I Tsavo." when I called him back and told him to take a lantern for fear of snakes. and sent Meeanh.xiv FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN little 163 Some same at time after this. Master.

it men who had it Rawson now picked to the light." I the shot-gun. of head and with a stick forced when suddenly we saw two perfectly clear jets of An Indian baboo poison spurt out from the fangs. and the poor man was so panicstricken that in a second he had torn off every atom at of his clothing. which I always kept handy.1 64 " THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Here by the bed. got the full benefit of this. where. enabled us to track still it. cutting . this. but was quickly given the happy despatch by a blow on the head. I saw a great red snake. We were very much amused could as of course we knew that although the poison it was exceedingly venomous. " CHAP. who happened to be standing near. I instantly fired at him. the edge of the full of fight. however." he seized cried. Bring the gun. it I do no harm penetrated a cut or open wound in the never found out the name of this snake. gazing at me the from the side of my campin it bed. unless flesh. and we eventually found the snake. its He then put his up and brought foot on the back open the jaws. (clerk). under ground-sheet. was. him clean half with the shot tail part remained where but the head half quickly wriggled off and The trail of disappeared in the gloom of the tent. . He made a last vicious dart at one of the run up. and rushed to the tent. blood. quickly. by the light of the lantern. about seven feet long.

and stood erect. colour have . . said. I was of a dark brick-red only saw one other of the I over all and same kind the time was in East Africa.XIV FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN as all I 165 which. but I also I was so much taken did not think about aback at its it appearance that it shooting until had glided off and disappeared in the thick undergrowth. It was evidently much startled. hissing venomously . I came upon it suddenly one day when out shooting. HI Pro HKAl).

passage of many heavy animals and as I pushed cautiously forward I fully expected to come face to face with a rhino at every corner I turned. After . The roadway was beaten in places into a fine white dust by the I . In this were some fresh rhino footprints which seemed barely an hour old. so determined to follow them up. I was very pleased. owing to the fact that I had to spend most of my time crawling on through the jungle. and found my progress more than usually slow. One day was out exploring in the dense bush some six or seven miles away from camp.CHAPTER XV UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS the jungle round Tsavo was a network of rhino paths I had never so far been successful ALTHOUGH my efforts to obtain was my ambition yet in I one of these animals. therefore. nor to be realised. to emerge suddenly on a broad and wellall-fours beaten track along which in I could walk comfortably an upright position.

accordingly. and ready. that to see was light enough for me into him when he little emerged from the bushes round the foot of our tree. For some considerable . was evidently a regularly used. to We had scarcely been there an hour when our delight we heard in a great rhino plodding along the track our direction. alas. but on approaching cautiously found that it was nothing more than a great brown heap of loose earth which one of the huge beasts had raised rolling about by on the soft ground. had in my rifle I pointing it in the direction which But. however. The next afternoon. just at that expected his head to appear. and by dusk we were safely but uncomfortably perched among I the branches directly over the path.CH. however. xv UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS 167 having gone a little way I fancied that I really did see one lying at the foot of a tree some distance ahead of me. so I yet risen. Unfortunately the moon had not was unable to catch sight of the . who scented us immedi- gave a mighty snort and then dived madly away through the jungle. monster as he approached there I knew. Mahina and made our way back to the place. This. so I resting-place which was to made up my mind spend a night in the overhanging branches of the tree. the clearing Nearer and nearer we I heard him coming steadily on. ately. moment the wind veered round and blew straight from us towards the rhino.

and he must have gone a long distance before he recovered from his fright and slowed down to his usual pace. At any heard nor saw anything more of him. and stood out like a picture From my first looked at through a stereoscope. It was a from the ground. perch among the branches I watched a water-buck . accompanied by Mahina. forefoot poised in the air thoroughly on the alert and looking round carefully and nervously for any . within a few yards of the it. but still some eight or ten calm and perfect in the tropics in . such as can be seen only everything looked mysteriously feet beautiful the glorious moonlight. and was My scarcely more successful. and wedged himself in a fork of the tree way below me. time hear him crashing in through everything that came his ponderously way. tree. I at once its my position for the night in to sit Mahina preferred some little where he could take a comfortable nap. and finding a likely river and with fresh footprints under decided to take up branches. then a bush-buck a tiny paa emerged from the bushes and paused at every step with one graceful later. I had come down from Tsavo in the afternoon. and spent a wakeful and uncomfortrate we neither able night for nothing. night. come to drink in the river .i68 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO we could CHAP. on the banks of the Sabaki. next attempt to bag a rhino took place some months later.

and to my surprise saw a large and very beautiful leopard crouching down and moving noiselessly in the At first I thought it must be direction of our tree. I do not know . he the on possibly a glint of moonlight barrel caught his eye into the bush before I and immediately disappeared could get in a shot. the leopard would actually have made a spring at my sleeping but I had no intention gun-bearer. of letting him have a chance of even attempting this. and then made off out of I sight as fast as ever he could go. if left to himself. some animal on the ground below us. I at once to woke Mahina and made him come up secure quarters beside me. but at last his appearance on the scene. Just then I saw a jackal come up on its trail and begin carefully to stalk it. Whether. the jackal a second. Absolutely noticed it noiseless as I was in doing this. so I cautiously raised my rifle and levelled it at him.xv UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS At length it 169 trace of a possible enemy. All of a stopped dead for however. not even rustling a fallen in safety. more For a long time after this nothing disturbed our the quarry I had hoped for made peace. but I soon realised that it was Mahina that the brute was stalking intent on. Just below us there . leaf in its stealthy advance sudden. reached the brink of the river and stooped to drink. looked round to discover the cause of this hurried exit. on the poor little antelope.

be easily followed. Mahina. a with his awkward our view. the jungle and of hearing him crash through it like a great steam-roller for several minutes. was an opening shone this the elephant grass which lined the river's edge. and as there was no longer he chatted to me about many until When track grey dawn we got down from our perch. as he was hard hit. any reason for silence. out of the he came with a slow. . ful Almost directly beneath us he halted and stood for an instant clearly exposed to This was my opportunity . This but instead of that time I expected him to fall had the mortification of seeing him rush off into I round like a peg-top. . filled gap was suddenly Without warning by a huge black mass a rhino making his shallow water. who was in a wild state of excitement over the burra janwar (great animal). On way. I consoled myself by thinking that he could not go far. and that I should easily find him when daylight arrived.1 7o THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO in CHAP. very leisurely. I took care- aim at his shoulder and fired. and with extraordinary rapidity. tread. and of miles the spoor could thus for a couple. we the of found the the wounded rhino clearly marked by great splashes of blood. Instantly. strange and curious things appeared. was also of this opinion. and through this the broad stream like silver in the moonlight. the huge beast whirled whereupon I fired again. ponderous certain stateliness combining strides.

will only it and it is said that if a hunter stand perfectly still on meeting a rhino. as I I did not like to for it. was told for a fact by an official who had been may long in the country that on one occasion while a gang of twenty-one slaves. for no apparent reason. was being smuggled down to the coast and was proceeding path. however. and ceased altogether. but equally indifferent eyesight. was no help arrived at so we struck out for home and tired. quarry had gone. they I execute a most determined charge. These huge party by the suddenness of his rush.xv UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS length. feel bound to add. One day they Tsavo in the afternoon very will sheer off on meeting a to attack . leave him wounded but there . will pass him by without attempting to molest I him. so that we had to abandon the search the ground round about was rocky. a to in Indian file along a narrow rhinoceros suddenly charged out at right angles impaled the centre man on its horns and broke the necks of the remainder of the them. beasts have a very keen sense of smell. and there was no possibility of telling which way our finally . hungry and disappointed. it 171 At got fainter and fainter. was exceedingly sorry for this. chained neck to neck as was the custom. that I have . human being and make no attempt the next day. and not in any way to be depended upon. Rhinos are extraordinary animals. however.

the chief accountant of the Uganda Railway. It being a cripple for if one even succeeds "SLAVES CHAINED NECK TO NECK AS WAS THE CUSTOM. B." escaping death.172 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO far CHAP. and had shot and apparently . Mr. Eastwood. He was on leave in at the time on a hunting expedition the neighbourhood of Lake Baringo. and they described it as a very painful proceeding. have met one or two men who have been tossed generally means in on the horns of these animals. once gave me a graphic description of his marvellous escape from an infuriated rhino. life. so failed to come across anybody who has actually tried the experiment. I On the other hand. about eighty miles north of the railway from Nakuru.

who were only attracted to the spot by the numbers of vultures hovering about. it then stuck its horn through his thigh and tossed him over its back. a . 173 killed On its walking feet up to it. waiting in their ghoulish manner for life to be extinct before beginning their meal. with this. the brute rose to and literally fell on him. for and by it was not some hours that he was found his porters. right arm. He was alone at the time. poor Eastwood where he had Finally. How to live for the eight before imagine days after this doctor could be got to him I cannot but in the end he fortunately made a the he managed which elapsed good recovery. . Not content breaking four ribs and his right arm. repeating this operation once or twice.xv UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS a rhino. it lumbered off. however. leaving helpless and fainting in the long grass fallen. only sign of his his terrible experience being the absence of which had to be amputated.

. by drainage Dr. but this state of affairs has now been completely altered away the jungle. on the Mombasa side of Tsavo. which. where fever. At this time it was a miserable. guineaworm.CHAPTER XVI A WIDOW'S STORY VERY March as I shortly before I left Tsavo I went (on 1899) on inspection duty to Voi. and all kinds of horrible diseases were rampant . was the good old custom to put up with any friend one came across towards nightfall. Rose was and in by clearing and as medical charge it of the place at the time of my I visit. swampy spot. is about thirty miles 11. near Mount Kilima N'jaro. over. made him my host when my all day's work was news. We spent a very pleasant evening together. have already mentioned. and naturally discussed the local Amongst other things we con- chatted about the new road which was being structed from Voi to a rather important missionary station called Taveta.

about twelve miles away from Voi. and so exhausted by her trying march carrying the baby that she was scarcely able night's experience . and without waiting to hear any further particulars hurried I on as could fast as possible to give poor Mrs. utterly tired out with the what assistance to long walk. Rose. but had not gone far from the doctor's tent when I saw in the distance four Swahili carrying something which looked like a stretcher along the newly-made road. I went quickly to meet them and called out to ask what they were carrying. helped her to finish the distance to the doctor's tent she was so unstrung by her terrible I .CH. O'Hara engineer in (the charge of the road-making). Some considerable way back I met her toiling alone with an infant in her arms." On enquiring what exactly had happened. At directed to find men to the hospital and told them where Dr. Early next morning I went out for a stroll with my shot-gun. Bwana " that during the night their master had been killed by a the lion. xvi A WIDOW'S STORY 175 and Dr. Rose mentioned that Mr. they told me (" . they replied "Bwana O'Hara. while a little o child held on to her skirt. O'Hara. Fearing that some accident had happened. was encamped in the Wa Taita country. and that his wife and children were this I following behind along the road. They shouted back " The master ") and when I asked what bwana. with his wife and children.

my husband children restless. Rose at once did all CHAP. I The baby was to feverish so and something to drink as I was doing so. for THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Dr. late in the afternoon sleeping draught and made comfortable When she was she appeared again much refreshed. got up give her . which words. " I shall give as nearly as possible in her own We I were in all asleep in the tent. he could both her a and for the children.176 to speak. HOSPITAL TENT AT VOI WHERE MRS. and was able to tell us the following dreadful story. o'HARA RESTED. . I heard what I thought was I at once woke a lion walking round the tent. and one bed and my two and in another. the mother being- given in one of the tents.

looking round I found that my husband was denly roused gone. heard a noise I among the boxes outside the door. but was sudme. but found my I could not do so. so rushed out and saw I poor husband lying between the boxes. by a feeling as if the pillow were On being pulled away from under my head. telling me not to worry as it was only a donkey " that I had heard. not more than two yards away. at once jumped off N . but he there refused. to come and help me. that was a lion standing beside looked up and saw the huge beast glowering at At this me. I jumped up and Just then called I him loudly. but got no answer. I then called to the askari saying I me. went out. round the the of the and spoke to Swahili askari who was on sentry by the camp fire a little distance off. for into the bush.xvi A WIDOW'S STORY husband and about. The night being very hot. told 177 my a him I felt sure there was lion taking his outside gun with He jumped up and him. The askari said he had seen nothing about except a donkey. so my husband came in again. He looked tent. my husband threw back the tent door and lay down again beside After a while I dozed off. it and this fortun- ately frightened the lion. ran up to him and tried to lift him. moment the askari fired his rifle.

but did no damage beyond frightening him away again for He soon came back and cona moment or two. The weeping widow. the its mouth. and that the seizing his head in its long tusks through his temples until they met again in the brain. Rose had to this made had a post-mortem examination of the body and come conclusion. while in I assisted It was lowering the rude coffin into the grave. ''All four askaris then lifted my husband dead. O'Hara's story. buried him before nightfall in a peaceful spot close by." pitiful Such was only comfort that her Mrs. The we could give her was to assure her pain . growl- ing and purring. back on to He was quite We had hardly got back into the tent before returned and prowled about in front of the in showing every intention of springing to recover his prey. The askaris fired at him. CHAP. the lion door. had closed We doctor reading the funeral service. tinued to walk round the tent until daylight. while I followed with the children until met you. the time. He found that O'Hara had evidently been lying on his back at lion. for husband had died instantly and without while she had been resting Dr. and it was only by firing through the tent every now and then that we I kept him out. the saddest scene imaginable. . At daybreak he disappeared and I had my husband's body carried here.178 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO came forward and the bed.

the gathering gloom of the closing evening.XVI A WIDOW'S STORY '79 the wondering faces of the children. very terrible tragedy of real I am glad to say that within a few weeks' time the lion that killed was responsible Taita. the dusky forms of a few natives who had gathered round all combined to make a most striking and solemn ending to a life. N 2 . shot from a tree top by one of the Wa _~ IN THE BAZAAR AT KAMPALA. for this tragedy was by a poisoned arrow.

In good spirits. as the line progressed onward I to the interior. set out my new headquarters on March 28." CHAPTER XVII AN INFURIATED RHINO MY when I work at Tsavo was finished in March. therefore."THE GREAT ATHI PLAINS. time railhead had reached a place called By this Machakos Road. the latter being treeless and . knew that there would be a great deal of interI esting work to be done and a constant change of camp and for scene. some two hundred and seventy-six miles from Mombasa and within a few miles of the great Athi Plains. received instructions to proceed to railhead and take charge of a section of the work there. the as I same was very glad to be given this new post. For many reasons I was sorry to say good-bye to Tsavo. 1899. where I had spent an eventful year but all .

CH. I had grown accustomed at Tsavo. found the country and the climate very different from that to which. however. and the air felt fresh and cool . Here I could see for I At Machakos Road miles across stretches of beautiful. the fairly open and interesting journey tract of country. On the way I was lucky enough to get some fine views of Kilima N'jaro. the line continuing to thorny nyika. was a great relief to be able to overlook a wide feel tract of country and to in on' all hemmed was no longer sides by the interminable and that I As Machakos Road depressing thorny wilderness. where game of all kinds abounds and can be seen grazing peacefully within a few lies through a hundred yards of the railway. bare of everything except grass. xvn AN INFURIATED RHINO 181 waterless expanses. the difference in temperature was also very marked. with the lofty peak of Kibo topping the fleecy clouds with its snowy head. the character of the country remains unaltered for some considerable distance. an English park and . and it is about two hundred miles from the coast through the not until Makindu is reached that a run change is apparent. which the great herds of game keep closely cropped. timbered here and there like it open downs. is some four thousand feet higher above the sea level than Tsavo. After leaving Tsavo. the whole mountain from base to summit standing out clearly and grandly. From this place.

182 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO in CHAP. and level cuttings have to be . made and hollows hills banked up tunnels have to be bored through . First the earth surface be prepared and rendered perfectly smooth if . move has to as by clockwork. fifty I miles further on across soon began to find plateEverything has to laying most interesting work. which My instructions were to hurry on the construcNairobi. compared with that of the sun-baked valley I had spent the previous year. the tion of the line as fast as possible to proposed headquarters of the Railway Administra- " FIRST THE EARTH SURFACE HAS TO BE PREPARED. which lay about the Athi Plains and ." tion.

XVII AN INFURIATED RHINO 183 .

and nuts while following these are the men gang who actually fix the rails on the sleepers and link up Finally. as it . . in along the centreorder to spy out the land and to form a rough estimate of the material that would in be required the way It of sleepers. girders to for this temporary bridges. another gang drops the rails in their yet another brings along the keys. placing sleepers intervals places bolts . after About I ten days in this my arrival at Machakos Road walked way It for five or six miles ahead of the last-laid rail. and bridges thrown across coolies Then at a line of regular moves . breaking the record for a day's and were gratified at receiving a in telegram of congratulation from the Railway mittee at the Foreign Office. while on other days we might do over a mile all depended on the nature of the country we had to cover. we succeeded platelaying. the packing from one to another. finishes the work by filling in earth and ballast under and around the steel sleepers to give them the Some days we were necessary grip and rigidity. CHAP. fishplates. able lo lay only a few yards. I Com- made it my custom to take a rails walk each morning for some distance ahead of line of the railway. and. was rather unusual for me to go so far. in etc.1 84 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO rivers. On one occasion . along. was necessary do order to avoid undue delay taking place owing to shortage of material of any kind.

however. my presence." made out I the form of a great rhinoceros lying down. Mahina having been left behind in camp. and on getting nearer "ANOTHER GANG DROPS THE RAILS IN THEIR PLACES. I was alone on this occasion. and watched him but after some little of where the . About two miles away on my left.XVII AN INFURIATED RHINO 185 happened. and thinking it. for rising in he looked straight my direction and . continued to advance very cautiously. wriggling until at length I through the short grass fifty got within yards I Here lay huge beast was resting. time he evidently suspected to his feet. I noticed a dark-looking object. it was an ostrich I I started off towards it Very soon. found that was bigger still game than an ostrich.

off in little clouds of dust. while scarcely dared to breathe.1 86 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO me in CHAP. and then gored the ground most viciously and started off once more on the This proceeding terrified me semi-circle round me. I on his thick hide. however. sending the dry mud Their only real effect. was to make him still more angry. The moment he line. then proceeded to walk round a half-circle. my courage began to revive again. As soon as had These. and could scarcely hope to escape a second time. as I felt sure that he would I come me again. my surmise . indeed. simply cracked against his hide and splintered to pieces on it. could hear him snorting and rooting up the grass quite close to me. to turn him. me and he charged by a few yards to my passed me. and I could not resist the temptation of sending a couple of bullets after him. Unfortunately. but luckily for me he did not catch sight of left. I fired instantly . quite flat flung myself down ten feet on the grass and threw my helmet some away in the hope that he would perceive it his and vent rage on I it instead of me. On he I thundered. but unfortunately my On soft-nosed bullets merely annoyed effect him and had not the slightest seeing this. he whipped round in his tracks like a cat and came for me in a bee- Hoping further. He stood stock-still for a moment. got wind of me. more than up-wind at ever.

Dr. we caught little two rhinos us. and assuredly did not attempt He went off for good I this annoy him further. as flat as ever was a few inches high. watched him gradually disI could not have believed possible that these huge. out of the corner of my eye. and I had quite given myself up for lost. yet dared not move or look up he should see me. a hollow some distance from and . feet lest and felt the thud of his great pounding along. Brock and incident I were out shootfar shortly after this it and not sight of from where in occurred. I fully expected myself tossed into the Nearer and came the heavy thudding. position I me again ! I never felt so relieved in to my life. for directly he scented me. I myself into the luckily the grass ground. up went his nose in the air and down he charged like a battering-ram. time. when from my lying nearer caught sight. I fairly I pressed could. ungainly-looking brutes could move so rapidly. as he was an old bull and in a most furious and vicious mood. My heart was thumping like a steam hammer. and every to find moment air. One day when ing. and turn and twist in their I tracks just like monkeys. and it was with great satisfaction that appear it in the distance. He had missed of the infuriated beast rushing by. had this not actually seen one do so before my eyes. I f he had found me he would certainly have pounded me to atoms.xvn AN INFURIATED RHINO 187 proved correct.

wondering which of us it ought Brock. just as it was moving at last I its great head from one it side to the other. ' get within about sixty yards of them.i88 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO to stalk them. the brute dropped at once. advantage of every fold of the ground in doing so and keeping about In that event in case of a charge. to it When decided upon gave me the chance instantly at had been waiting for. which commenced would probably in this roll the beast over. I fired the hollow between neck and shoulder . attack. we managed to IT NEVER MOVED AGAIN. I took aim at the larger of the two. and as it was my turn for a shot. Proceeding carefully manner. fifty yards apart one or other of us would be able to get in a broadside shot. taking CHAP. and save for one or two .

and the r trophy was well w orth the pains it I had taken to add to my collection. as We then proceeded to skin our this. 'THE TKOI'HV WAS WELL WORTH THE PAINS TO ADD IT TO MY COLLECTION." I HAD TAKEX . before at last we succeeded in it away. The second rhino proved to be a well-grown youngster which showed back. it considerable fight as fallen we attempted to approach kill it.XVII AN INFURIATED RHINO its convulsive kicks of its stumpy legs as it lay half on never moved again. its comrade. We it did not want to and accordingly spent about two hours in shouting and throwing stones at driving prize . but may be imagined. tough job. proved rather a we managed it in the end.

rhinoceros. leopard. is the great abundance game of almost every conceivable kind. Here myself have seen lion. trees along the the only baked banks of which a few stunted ones to be seen In all this struggle to keep themselves alive. appearance or general characTogether they form a great grass. waterbuck. tract of rolling downs covered with and inter- sected here and there by dry ravines. indeed. giraffe. and. wildebeeste. however. except in the Athi River (some forty miles away) and in a few water-holes known only to the wild animals. which gradually merges into the Athi Plain. hartebeeste. eland. The great feature of the un- dulating plains. and the one which gives them a of I never-failing interest. . is expanse there absolutely no water in the dry season.CHAPTER XVIII LIONS ON THE ATHI PLAINS SHORTLY after I took charge at railhead we entered the Kapiti Plain. is hardly to be distinguished from the ter latter in the of the country. zebra.

Grant!. from the Tsavo River on the east to the strictly Kedong Valley on the west. besides greater and lesser bustard. At the time I was there. ostriches. AND ZEBRA. is now a protected Game is Reserve and so long as this huge expanse thus maintained as a sanctuary. 191 wart-hog. PLAINS impala.CH. and a host of other animals and birds too numerous to name . while along the Athi and close to its banks may be found large numbers of hippo and crocodiles. . xvni LIONS ON THE ATHI Thomsoni. formed the principal grazing ground herds of cattle for the I immense owned by the Masai. . marabout. am very glad to say that the whole of this country on the south side of the railway as far as the boundary of German East Africa. these great plains also JACKSON S HARTEBEESTE.

species becoming While crossing this dry expanse. which could not be accomplished under a progressed onwards couple of months. the waterless As we this into belt. for not a drop could be obtained on the way. became a very serious matter indeed. nor could we hope for any until we had got to the other side of the plain and had reached the Athi River.192 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO of any of these CHAP. employed about railhead. there can be no danger extinct. as any break- . the greatest difficulty I had to contend with was the provision of sufficient water for the three thousand workmen WATERBUCK.

was what befell that three of these men never returned . which. by reason of the large we knew must somewhere. but on one occasion a lion came unpleasantly close to the men working the pump. the line was blocked the time the water was being pumped into the tanks. however. for construction could come through and a good deal of time was also wasted. the trains returned to railhead.xvin LIONS in ON THE ATHI would PLAINS 193 down the supply have had the most disastrous consequences among so large a body of men working in great all tropical climate. At first I had most of the tank-filling done by night. indeed. which. to get a plentiful supply of water. and so night work had to be abandoned. The coolies themselves were so anxious. When we this had proceeded some distance across dry land. for This was a source of considerable all delay. them is not known to this day. who often quarrelled and when fought in their eagerness to get at it. daily stream further we had to the rear. and consequently no material . and when I was experiencing to the o . that once or twice some of to among them ventured herds of game. day under the blazing sun of a Every day two trainloads of water last fell tanks were brought up from the passed. in distributing the water to the workmen. The only result of these expeditions. of course. more daring spirits go out on to the plains in the exist search of waterholes.

full my tank trains." he . On being asked I his business. to which interesting belonged. had had experience of M^bali kidogo before Irishman's "mile and a bit. have heard. it M'bali kidogo (" A little distance"). and ascertained that some time previously exactly in how long ago I could not gather he had been the locality on a raiding in finding water. replied. and got the reply " " Swahili: I Now.i 94 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO the disadvantage and delay caused by CHAP. is like the So I decided to start very early next morning on a search for this pond In for such my informant described it meantime the poor fellow. Great Master wants water I can show This was good news. he . if it could be relied upon so I questioned him closely. a native from some remote corner of the plains with nothing by way of dress but a small his left piece of cowhide thrown over shoulder- came on to my tent door one his heels in " day and squatted down the native fashion. In the evening had a long talk with him in broken Swahili round the camp fire. I expedition and had succeeded asked in if the place was far away. the food and drink. and made a ravenous meal." . it "that the to him." . who appeared starving there was a sore famine among the natives of the district at the time was given to be. and obtained some I insight into many of the strange and barbarous tribe customs of the Masai.

A considerable number of bones lay scattered round it. however. I expected to was now quite dry. and did not reserving that a shot. some miles to the right The march was full of interest. and zebra. but of for its centre-line. r many exclamawhich the letter I water having thus proved a failure. The Our search for Masai and the Indian were sent back while Mahina and I camp. and gave vent to tions in his peculiar language. whether of "kills" or of animals which had died of thirst I could not say. which without doubt had contained water very recently. determined to try my luck with the game. gazelle. in " " rolled like a kettledrum. hartebeeste. made a big detour from the o 2 to . as find. and led us across the rolling plains more or less in the direction in which the railway was to run. Our Masai guide. whose name we found to be Lungow. seemed be quite certain of his way. Our guide appeared very much upset when he found the pond empty.xvin LIONS ON THE ATHI I PLAINS 195 In the morning rifle started off betimes. but which. and by another Indian carrying the necessary food and to water. trip. pleasure for the homeward Late in the forenoon we arrived at Lungow's pond a circular dip about eighty yards in diameter. I was out attempt strictly on business. taking my and being accompanied by Mahina with 303 the 1 2 -bore shot-gun. on the way we passed within easy range of herds of wildebeeste.

In this fruitless manner we covered several miles. and with much care managed to get within three hundred yards of however. I moment. for I singled out the biggest head and waiting a favourable at once. Just then. I handed him my rifle and took the knife in order to do it myself. but the probability was that owing to the it long range would have resulted only is in a wound. specimens of Thomson's and Grant's I might have attempted a shot once or twice. and I was and I think there beginning to think that we should have to return to camp without so much as firing a shot.196 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Game abounded it CHAP. and seemed unable to pierce the tough hide. and that I vain can be called "stalking. tions. and told Mahina to drive the hunting knife right through his heart so as to put him quickly out of doing all pain. startled feet. Just as I raised the knife to strike. I was suddenly jumping to his by the wildebeeste For a moment he . nothing so painful as to see an animal limping about in a crippled condition. dropping him ran up to the fallen beast. As Mahina was I not it this as skilfully or as quickly as thought might be done. I them. dried-up water-hole. in all direc- but the animals were much more shy than was in they had been in the morning. saw a herd of wildebeeste." when as a matter of fact one has to move in the openstalked if it splendid gazelle. fired at him. which appeared to be dying.

about to take the picture. he was thunderstruck to see the wildebeeste jump up and come charging down in upon him. . he took his stand-camera from the Indian who carried it and proceeded to When he was just focus it on the animal's head. but attended with more serious results.xvm LIONS ON THE ATHI me in PLAINS 197 stood looking at way. and as same way. in fact. and thought it he was very keen on obtaining photographs of game. To my utter astonishment. instant He sprang quickly aside. as I did off. He the had knocked his wilde- beeste over in much was dead . From I that time I lost all trace of him. though followed up like for four or five miles. is Kipling's Fuzzy- Wuzzy and "'e's generally shammin' when this my friend Rawson about dead". time had an 'e's experience very similar to mine. broke into his ordinary gallop and quickly rejoined the herd. and air. an up went the camera into the followed the the next moment by the unfortunate Indian. I thought best just to wait. after he had staggered for about sixty yards he seemed to revive suddenly. made At first . The wildebeeste. and then to my a dazed and tottery kind of amazement he turned and he moved with such a shaky and uncertain gait that I felt confident that he could only go a few yards before dropping so. however. not wish to disturb the other firing a game around us by it second shot.

into the grass. a I reddish colour moving in good distance he could to to our left front. and before could get it my field-glasses to bear. wildebeeste having stuck horn right through the man's thigh and tossed him over its back. asked Mahina if make out what I it was. had disappeared kept my eye on the spot. we had not gone far on our . After abandoning the chase of my wildebeeste. the animal.way towards the home "FORTUNATELY THE BRUTE FELL DEAD AFTER THIS FINAL EFFORT. but he was unable do so.198 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO its CHAP." camp when I thought I observed something of a a patch of long grass. Fortunately the brute fell dead after this final effort. leaving Rawson grateful for his escape. how- . whatever I was.

the reddish object again appeared and I saw that it was nothing less ever. was a fascinating sight to see how he slowly raised his massive head above the top of the grass again and gazed calmly and him. steadily at us as we neared Unfortunately I could not distinguish the outline of his body. to I asked Mahina in a whisper sher if if he I equal facing a charge from the should wound I where simply that and right went. . we shot possible but as moved. my own So we kept we drew felt nearer. than the shaggy head of a lion peeping over the long grass. Sahib. as he lay there grimly watching us. This time Mahina also saw what it was. . sher!" ("Look. I watched the lion carefully out of the corner of Every now and then he eye as we closed in. would disappear from view for a moment and it my . tried my best to follow on. but apparently oblivious of his As presence. I and to take no notice of him. and called out. ! Master. He answered well he kept his word.xviii LIONS ON THE ATHI PLAINS 199 and we gradually approached it. there would he go also him. I therefore if circled cautiously round in order to see the back to the covert was sufficiently thin at . hidden as it was in the grassy thicket. When we were about a hundred yards off. the lion also twisted round and so always make a shoulder . while advice. a lion "Dekko. edging up towards the beast. I whispered to him to be quiet ").

had first lost the sleepy us. as have said. . to my horror and astonishment was joined by a lioness whose presence we had never even thought of or suspected. to a disgraceful miss. but he instantly sprang to his feet again. a bare seventy yards yet I must confess still.200 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO full CHAP. The . look with which he had at and was now not give on the regarded but still he did me the impression if that he meant to charge. the lion turning a complete somersault over his tail. kept his head a half-circle. Again the tip took aim. was bent on war. spite of the risk which one must always run by attacking a lion at such close quarters on an open plain as flat as so in a standing position the palm of the hand . fully He alert . questioning I gaze. and I fired. I. so far as could see but continued his steadfast. this time for a spot below of his nose. and again I fired with more success. and no doubt we had in not provoked him. however. When I had described and that my found that the grass was no thinner chances of a shot had not improved. distance was. More astonishing the beast made not the slightest movement I did not even blink an eye. I took careful aim at his head. I on us. We us were now within seventy yards of the to who appeared the closer take the greater interest in we approached. lion. I thought he was done and for. he would have allowed us to depart in peace.

xvin

LIONS

ON THE ATHI

PLAINS

201

Worse was still to follow, for to our dismay both made a most determined charge on us, bounding along
at a great pace

and roaring angrily as they came.
"Sahib, do sher ata hai /"
!

Poor Mahina
("

cried out,

Master, two lions are coming "), but I told him to stand stock-still and for his life not to make the
slightest

movement.

In the twinkling of an eye the

two beasts had covered about forty yards of the distance towards us. As they did not show the least sign
of stopping,

thought we had given the experiment of remaining absolutely motionless a fair trial, and was just about to raise the rifle to my shoulder as a
I

last

resort,

when
a

suddenly
fell

the
to

wounded
to

lion

stopped, staggered, and
lioness

the ground.

The
us,

took

couple

of

bounds nearer
relief
this

and

then to
for

my

unmeasured

turned to look

round

her mate,

who had by

time managed
stood,

to get to his feet again.

There they both

what growling viciously and appeared to me to be a succession of ages. The lioness then made up her mind to go back to the
lashing their tails, for

and they both stood broadside on, with their heads close together and turned towards us, snarling
lion,

in

a most aggressive manner.
or
foot just

Had
it

either of us

moved hand
probably a

then,

would,

I

am

convinced, have at once
fatal charge.

brought on another and

As

the two great brutes stood in this

position

202

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
us,
I

CHAP.

looking at

had, of course, a grand opportunity
I

of dropping both, but
to
it

confess
I

I

did not feel equal

at the

moment.

could only devoutly hope

that

they would not renew their attack, and was
let

only too thankful to

peace if they would, without any further hostility on my part.
Just
at
this

them depart
the
lion

in

juncture

seemed

to

grow

He staggered some ten yards suddenly very weak. back towards his lair, and then fell to the ground
;

the lioness followed, and lay
still

down

beside him

both

watching us, and growling savagely. After a few seconds the lion struggled to his feet again and
retreated a
little
fell

further, the lioness

him

until

he

once more.
I

A

third time the
to breathe

accompanying same

thing took place, and at last
freely,

began

more
from

as they had

now reached

the

thicket

which they had originally emerged.
I

Accordingly took a shot at the lioness as she lay beside her
I

mate, partly concealed in the long grass.
think
I

do not

but anyhow she at once made off and bounded away at a great rate on emerging into
hit her,

the open.
I

sent a few bullets after her to speed her on her

way, and then cautiously approached the wounded He was stretched out at full length on his lion.
side,

with his back towards me, but

I

could see by

the heaving of his flanks that he was not yet dead,
so
I

put a bullet

through his spine.

He

never

xvin

LIONS
after this

ON THE ATHI
;

PLAINS

203

but for safety's sake, I made no attempt to go up to him for a few minutes, and then
only after Mahina had planted a few stones on his

moved

body

just to

make
felt

sure that he was really dead.

We
paws,

both

very pleased with ourselves as

we

stood over

him and looked
clean,

at his fine head, great

and long,

sharp
in

tusks.
fine

He

was a
and

young, but full-grown lion

condition,

measured nine
tip of

feet

eight

and a half inches from

nose to

tip of tail.

My

last

shot had entered

the spine close to the
in

the body

;

the
;

first

and had lodged shot was a miss, as I have
shoulder,

already said

but the second

had caught him on

the forehead, right between the eyes.

The

bullet,

however, instead of traversing the brain, had been turned downwards by the frontal bone, through

which

it

crashed, finally lodging in the root of the
I

tongue, the lead showing on both sides.

cut

out the tongue and hung it up to dry, intending but unfortunately a vulture to keep it as a trophy
;

swooped down when my back was
carried
it

turned,

and

off.
I

From
first

the time

knocked the
fell

lion

over

until

he

staggered and

not more than a minute

could have elapsed
to

quite long enough, however,
to cover the distance
us.

have enabled him

and to

have seized one or other of

owed our

lives to the fact

Unquestionably we that we both remained

204

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
motionless
;

CHAP.

speak too highly of Mahina for the splendid way in which he Had he acted as did another stood the charge.
absolutely
I

and

cannot

gun-boy I know of, the affair might not have had so happy an ending. This gun-boy went out with
very neighbourhood, and not came across a long after our adventure.

Captain

G

- in this

G

-

lion just

as

we

did,

and wounded

it.

It

charged

down on them,
still,

but instead of remaining absolutely
fled,

the terrified gun-boy

with the result that

the lion

came

furiously on,

and poor

G

-

met

with a terrible death.

in

While Mahina was scouring the neighbourhood search of some natives to carry the skin back

camp, I took a good look round the place and found the half-eaten body of a zebra, which I
to

noticed had been killed out in the open and then

dragged into the long grass. The tracks told me, also, that all the work had been done by the lion,

and

this

set

me

thinking of the lioness.

I

accord-

ingly swept the plain with
tion in

my

glasses in the direcoff,

which she had bounded
I

and

after

some

searching

discovered

her about a mile
in

apparently lying
hartebeeste,
notice of

down

the

away, midst of a herd of

who grazed away without taking any her. I felt much inclined to follow her up
rf

but

I

was

afraid that

if

I

did so the vultures that
settle

were already hovering around would

on

my

xvm
lion

LIONS
and

ON THE ATHI

PLAINS

205

spoil the skin, for the destruction of

which

these ravenous birds are capable, even in the space of only a few minutes, is almost beyond belief. I

accordingly returned to the dead beast and sat
astride of him.
lion
I

down

had read that a

frontal shot at a

was a very risky one, and on carefully examinfor owing ing the head it was easy to see the reason to the sharp backward slope of the forehead it is
;

almost impossible for a bullet fired
reach the brain.
in this district

in this

manner

to

As

there were lots of lions about
I

and as

wanted

to

bag some more,

I

set myself to think out a plan
frontal shot

might be got rid afterwards I had an opportunity of putting my scheme into practice, happily with most excellent
results
;

whereby the risk of a of. About a fortnight

this,

however,

is

another story, which

will

be told later on.
I

next commenced to skin

my

trophy and found

it

a very tough job to perform by myself.
to

proved be a very fat'beast, so I knew that Mahina would make a few honest and well-earned rupees out of
believing that

He

him, for Indians will give almost anything for lion
fat,
it is

an

infallible

cure for rheuma-

tism and various other diseases.
the

When

at length
I

skinning

process

was

completed,

waited

impatiently for the return of Mahina,
this
It is

who had by
I

time been gone

much

longer than
I

expected.

rather a nerve-shattering thing

am

speaking

206

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
myself
with
to

CH.

xvm

for

remain absolutely alone
beside
the

for

hours on

a

vast

open plain
vultures

carcase of a dead

lion,

wheeling about above one, and with nothing to be seen or heard for It was a great miles around except wild animals.
incessantly
relief,

therefore,

when

after

a

long

wait

I

saw

Mahina approaching with half-a-dozen
naked natives
had
lost his

practically

in

his train.

It

turned out that he
it

way back
all.

to me, so that
lost

was lucky he
back

found
to

me

at

We

no time

in getting

camp, arriving there just at sundown, when my first business was to rub wood ashes into the skin

and then stretch

it

on a portable frame which

I

had

made

a few days previously.
that
night,

The camp

fire

was a

and the graphic and highly coloured description which Mahina gave to the eager circle of listeners of the way in which we slew the
big one
lion

would have made even " Bahram, that great
for his fame.

Hunter," anxious

CHAPTER XIX
THE STRICKEN CARAVAN

NOT

long after this adventure the permanent way

reached the boundary of the Kapiti Plains, where a station had to be built and where accordingly we took up our headquarters for a week or two. A

few days after we had settled down in our new camp, a great caravan of some four thousand men
arrived from the interior with luggage and loads of

regiment which was on its way down to the coast, after having been engaged in
food for a Sikh

suppressing the mutiny of the Sudanese in Uganda. The majority of these porters were Basoga, but
there were also fair numbers of

Baganda
of

(i.e.

people

of

Uganda) and of the

natives

Unyoro, and

various other tribes.

Of

course none of these wild

men

of Central Africa had either seen or heard of a
all

railway in

their

lives,

and they consequently
in

displayed

the

liveliest

curiosity

regard to

it,

crowding round one of the engines which happened

very cautiously they began to approaching the locomotive stealthily as though it were some living monster of the jungle. o flat same The first effect was simply The whole crowd threw themselves on the ground howling with fear. and stopped railway work the time Indeed. at the time sounding the whistle. to and hazarding the wildest guesses as to its origin and use in a babel I of curious native languages. their curiosity gradually over- powering return. thought I would provide a little entertainment for them. nor did the stampede cease the whistle. Eventually. and on attempting to do any walk- . CHAP. until shut off steam and stopped Then. so I stepped on to the footplate and blew off the steam. and then with heads well down and arms well spread out they fled wildly in all I directions . two of their chiefs summoned up courage enough to climb on to the engine. and afterwards thoroughly enjoyed a short run which I had to make down the line in order to bring up some construction to material. them. Just after this caravan had moved on we were rain-storms. into for subjected some torrential which transformed the whole plain all a quaking bog being. magical.208 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO be standing at the station. becomes a mass of thick district is extraordinary. of a black sub-soil. the effect of a heavy this downpour of rain in sun-baked is which ground. The mud in no time.

and the I ground was very boggy. for otherwise a flood may come down and detain in these parts him and stream for rain his on the wrong side of the perhaps a week.xix THE STRICKEN CARAVAN 209 ing one slides and slips about in the slush in a most uncomfortable manner. as quickly subside. my . Now. and the country once more resumes its normal sun-cracked appearance. I selected for the hunt a dozen fleet-footed Indians who p . ! men could do nothing owing to the rain. become roaring torrents from bank to bank in an incredibly short time while for . o o hour previously not one drop of water was to be seen. it had long been ambition to capture one of these animals alive " " The Here is my chance so I said to myself. I at a standstill owing noticed a great herd of zebra about a couple of miles away on the north side of the railway. rivers On leaving my tent one morning when work was to the rain. some of them would soon get hausted and we should then be able to catch them. Of course when the caravan the floods ceases. where half an Innocent-looking dongas. many hours or even a few days the rivers become absolutely impassable in this land of no bridges. On this account it is the custom of the wise traveller always to cross a river before camping. so zebra up and thought that if we could surround the herd judiciously and chase the down from point to point through the exheavy ground. the and dongas dry up.

he once planted both his hind feet on my chest. and then did just what we wished them an exceptionally boggy part of the ground. the halfcircle of coolies began to advance with wild shouts. but did me no serious damage beyond throwIn time. flourished splendidly. to bring in them Three of the captured zebras Engineer. however. The whole expedition lasted little more than a couple of hours. of my three unfortunately died very shortly but the third. when we running them to an absolute standthrew them down and sat on their in heads this until the other men came up less with ropes. were employed on the earth works. . biting At first he was exceedingly vicious. whereupon the zebras galloped madly about from side to side. Two after . . where they soon became more or less helpless. while the other three were given to the Surfacing men had assisted in the hunt. and kicking everyone who approached him indeed. After having partially surrounded the herd. but eventually \ve managed triumph to the camp where they were firmly secured. giving us a great deal of trouble in getting them along.210 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO at CHAP. ing me heavily to the ground. and who once entered with great zest into the spirit of the scheme. : In way we captured no than six they were very wild and fractious. a sturdy two-year-old. We singled out a few young ones to do made straight for and succeeded still. whose I kept for myself.

and would drink from a bucket and eat from hand.XIX THE STRICKEN CARAVAN 211 he became very tame and domesticated." On making annoyance. Some few days after our successful sortie against P 2 . enquiry. my He used to be left to graze picketed by a to long rope to a stake in the ground I . allowing himself to be led about by a rope and head collar. that he had disappeared. I learned from my servants that a herd ot wild zebra had galloped close by. much my ' \VE MANAGED TO BRING THEM' IN TRIUMPH TO THE CAMP. and that this had so excited him that he managed to tear the picket- ing peg out of the ground and so rejoin his brethren in freedom. but one after- noon on returning to camp found.

! with what a terrible difference All their gaiety and lightappearance heartedness was gone. The ranks of the caravan were terribly decimated. but alas. tins of I boiled a bucketful of water. the great caravan of Basoga porters re- turned from the coast on their way back to their own country in . from which they also make a most refreshing and stimulating drink. Thirteen poor wretches fell out to die close to less condition my and tent . the zebra. they were in the most hopeto far too weak to be able as I do any- thing at all for themselves. As soon discovered them. and dozens of men were left dead or dying It was a case along the roadside after each march. as of course it was quite impossible for the whole caravan to halt in the wilderness where neither food nor water was to be There was only one European with the party. of the survival of the fittest. very little among such a number. and although he worked like a slave he could do had.212 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. and the poor fellows were in their epidemic of dysentery had broken out amongst them. their simple diet in their own homes consisting almost entirely of bananas. while the Basoga themselves seemed quite indifferent to the sufferings of their comrades. added some condensed milk and the greater part of a bottle of brandy to it. and fed them with the mix- . doubtless caused by their having eaten food to which they were entirely a pitiable state! frightful A unaccustomed.

and banks. until finally they were well enough to resume their journey to Usoga. but the re- maining seven I managed to nurse into complete As our camp recovery in about a fortnight's time. Bwana" ("Master. and I directions for the care of the sick Basoga. and every hundred yards or so I passed the swollen corpse of some unfortunate porter who had fallen route . this nourish- ment were heartrending some could only whisper. could hardly do even this. very grateful indeed for the care which we had taken of on. indeed. and were so weak as to be unable to swallow the spoonful of milk which I In the end six proved to be put between their lips. beyond all help.xix THE STRICKEN CARAVAN Their feeble cries for some of . were brought along from place to place on the top of trucks. My road lay along the taken by the home-returning caravan. 213 ture. as knew should be away all night. The day I after I first found these stricken natives had arranged to ride on my pony for some miles in advance of the railway. One or two of them. they was moved them. and died that night . on account of the enormous numbers of its stones in bed and along follow its I ordered left my I tent to me later in the day. " Bwana. Master "). and then open their mouths. in order to make arrangements for the building of a the Stony Athi River so-called temporary bridge over a tributary of the Athi.

I some little distance handed him over to the officer in charge. that would fire if he did not once go back and replace the blanket round his dying comrade.214 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. am glad to say. but on rifle seeing me dis- mount and point my tried to run at him. and callously rolled the dying to man out of it as one would unroll for a bale of goods. the main further and I then marched him in front of the caravan. rolled himself up in his scarlet blanket and lay down by the roadside to die whereupon one of his companions. though sullenly enough. coveting the highly-coloured and highly-prized article. however. A poor wretch. act of was witness of as unfeeling an barbarism as can well be imagined. I I made clear to him by at signs. I this little act of retributive pushed on towards the Stony Athi. utterly unable to go a step further. had him soundly theft. This he eventually did. so I put spurs my pony as if scoundrel. turned . kiboko. out and died by the wayside. who. thrashed for his brutality and After performing justice. This was too much me. it he desisted and away. Before very long I came up with and here I the rearguard of this straggling army. moment he put his hand on his knife and half or it drew from its sheath. back. I me to camp of Here on. seized one end of the blanket. On . making and galloped up to the to thrash him with my In a whip made of rhinoceros hide.

xix THE STRICKEN CARAVAN way while still 215 the I not far from the caravan camp by spied a Grant's gazelle in the distance." inordinately fond . WHICH BOWLED THE ANTELOPE OVER STONE-DEAD. I tuft and crawled along in the I got near enough for a safe shot. so. and devoured huge chunks of the raw and still . wriggled from tuft to folds of the ground until eventually handing them my pony. ripped him open. over stone-dead. which bowled the antelope Scarcely had he dropped when the Basoga swooped down on him. Basoga from the caravan had followed me. of which they are " I GOT NEAR ENOUGH FOR A SAFE SHOT. doubtless the aid of A in the hope of obtaining meat. and my glasses discovered that it was a finefew looking buck with a capital pair of horns.

close to on the banks of the Stony where the railway was to cross. two of them willingly agreed to go on with me and carry the head and haunch of the I gazelle. and promptly cut off the head but my own people. gave them. with my tent just at this juncture. and of made my notes temporary bridge. become a roaring torrent if rain should set in it would therefore be necessary to span it with a forty-foot girder in order to prevent constant "washouts" during the rainy season. lutely dry. and who were all good Mohammedans. On my way I had to pass the left. quivering flesh. I dismounted at . but I was necessary for the At the time the river was absowhat that it knew might at any moment . I at camped for the night Athi. camp which the Basoga caravan had just but the spectacle of about a dozen newly-made graves which the hyaenas had already torn open caused me to put spurs to . and as he had very fine and exceptionally long once and bagged him too. were thoroughly disgusted the sight of this very hideous-looking pig. When we I had got very nearly to the place where intended to camp for the night. The Basoga were delighted at this. morning I started early on my return The next to railhead. lapping up the warm blood in the In return for the meat which palms of their hands. a great wart-hog suddenly jumped up almost at my horse's feet.216 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. who arrived tusks.

his skin of old gold and bright green sparkling brilliantly in the sunshine. warming himself. and the muscular long contortions after death throughout his body gave me a very vivid idea of the tremendous squeezing power possessed by these Skinning him was an easy process.XIX THE STRICKEN CARAVAN horse and to gallop as fast as possible I 217 my to the pestilential spot. unfortunately peared. WART-HOG . notice of me as I appeared to take little cautiously approached. railhead I When through had almost got back happened to notice a huge serpent stretched out on the grass. the his beautiful colouring soon to disap- old gold turning white and the bright green to lustreless black. but reptiles. and was He I probably drowsy and sated with a heavy meal. shot him through the head as he lay.

had to be arranged for the Athi itself. and on April 24 we reached the Stony Athi River. On one of these occasions was busy attending to the pitching of my tent after arriving at the Athi late in the evening. rapid progress continued to be made with the line. when on looking round to see I was very much surprised two European ladies sitting under the shade As I knew of some trees on the river bank. so I had to make make one or two expeditions various to this river in order to to select a suitable place for the crossing and other I arrangements. which was some eight miles further on.CHAPTER XX A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER IN spite of all our difficulties. Each day railhead crept a mile or so further across the Plains. that this was anything but a safe place in which . where our for a great camp was pitched few days while the temporary bridge was being thrown across the dry Still another temporary bridge bed of the stream.

CH. but there was as yet no sign of the little caravan. of the for their to arrive. owing to the number of lions about. I went them to see if I could be of any assistance. The men every moment with of fact In it were expected the porters. which of course made the by roads bad and the tents about double their usual weight. When journey. and as a matter party did not arrive until Jong after nightfall. I these circumstances it . xx A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 219 to rest. was glad to be able to place my tent at their disposal and to offer them as good a dinner as it was possible to provide in the wilds. I chose the most suitable and pitched my tent close to it for a night or two while I made the necessary calculations for . After a thorough examination of all the possible situations. was perhaps a great and as blessing that I happened to be there the ladies were both very tired and hungry. they had I next morning to resume their started out and made a search up and left down the river for the proper position for my temporary bridge. up to and found that they were American missionaries journeying to their stations further inland. It is indeed wonderful what dangers and hardships these delicately nurtured ladies will face cheerfully in order to carry out their self-appointed mission. They were waiting but their camp equipment had been considerably delayed porters some very heavy rain.

with grassy glades here and there among the trees. Eventually I came to the conclusion that there must be some mistake in the table of angles from which I had been working. temporary diversion of the line. too. In some it places is this quite narrow. and is fringed all along its course by a belt of thorny fringe is hardwood trees. The which runs almost due north here. Every now and again. This being rectified in my calculations. carrying out the work. I proceeded to lay out the curve again. so I started to work them out for myself and soon discovered a serious misprint. I thought I richly deserved a few hours' play. crossing on which I had decided had sharp curve in I be approached by a somewhat the line. but always with the same result. experienced considerable as for some reason or other I could not the theodolite last make the peg on the curve come anywhere near the tangent-point where the curve should link up I with the straight. and in laying this out with to difficulty. repeated the whole operation time after time. and accordingly determined to try my luck after lions had pegged out up-stream river towards the source of the Athi. when at last everything came out accurately and After I to my this satisfaction. before taking a turn eastward to the Indian Ocean- forms part of the western boundary of the Athi Plains. while in others about a quarter of a mile wide.220 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO The CHAP. .

I had noticed that a lion after having eaten and drunk well. ever been hunted previous to my time. shouting and halloing with all their might as they advanced through the scrub and undergrowth. I As felt rather tired after my morning's work. to way mount patches in front of the but after having gone about six miles in without adventure of any kind. would throw himself down quite without caution in the first shady spot of course. while along- the banks frequent patches of stunted bushes. I decided again. and after a hasty lunch off we started up the bank of the first. river. lions in this part of the country for they had rarely if had as yet no fear. and even of man the . I walked for some distance at partly because the I ground was very stony and lion partly because thought a likely might suddenly bound out of some beaters this .xx A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 221 the stream itself widens out into a broad stretch of water. nearly always covered over with tall reeds are and elephant grass. although went on Mahina and half-a-dozen accompany left natives to beat the belt of trees were to me.nothing he came to except man ever disturbs him. this expedition. while I rode . which struck me as very likely places for the king of beasts to sleep in after having drunk at the river. At this time the beaters were in line about a hundred yards behind me. I decided to use as a rule I my pony on foot.

Before he could reach the further thicket. which had evidently been worn . The next moment out bounded a lioness. called out that he could see the lion awaiting our approach. Almost at the same I moment found blood marks left by the wounded animal. the deep growl that of a serious The beaters and now advanced with great care. before one of the men. and had the tells I satisfaction of hearing hit. fancied I saw a movement among the bushes and pulled up suddenly to watch the spot. who raced straight across the open strip into the next patch of jungle. quickly followed by another. Fully a quarter of an hour must have elapsed in this slow yet exciting search.222 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. with his head just visible in a large in bed of rushes only a short distance front of where I then was. leading apparently to a kind of gap in the bank of the river. well to the flank so as to be ready for any emergency. when to my utter amazement out sprang a huge black-maned lion. Just as the men got up to a rather thicker piece of I jungle than usual. taking advantage of every bit of cover and keeping a sharp look-out for the wounded animal as we crept from tree to tree. making all haste after his mates. I Throwing myself seized my rifle to get a shot at the my pony. fired. some fifty or sixty yards to my left. and a little ahead of the line. but did not dismount. I however. second lioness as off she galloped past. and was just about to pull the trigger.

without making the slightest sound. not twenty yards from watching. fired plump at the side of his head. and steadying the barrel against the trunk of the tree and standing on I tip-toe in order to get a better view. not knowing where the huge brute was and expecting every moment that he would charge out at me over the bank from his reedy refuge.xx A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 223 down by a rhino going to and fro to drink. I saw that it was no use to attempt to climb as the prevented continued me overspreading foliage would have from obtaining any view ahead so I . Emboldened fact that to till a certain extent. if On my calling out that the lion was done for. ordering all the men. my slow advance with a fast-beating heart. a tree. not me. me. I accordingly made for this with the greatest caution. and as noiselessly as possible I slipped from cover to cover in my endeavour to obtain a peep over the bank. however. crept steadily forward and from the shelter of a friendly tree behind the bole of which I hid myself. crouched the but the native directed luckily first who had seen him and I who had very me to where he was. to remain behind . And lion there. my enemy. It was as he had suddenly been hit with a sledge-hammer. raised my rifle cautiously. the . I was able to look over the bank. by the up then I had heard no movement on I the part of at last. for he fell over instantly and lay like a log. except Mahina.

while went on ahead my luck either with more lions or with any that might to game come my way. CHAP. but no I I followed lions up the river almost crossed that I its more my it path. as the two beaters lionesses were probably still close at hand. and gave chase to with my rushed through the long grass but a nearer view showed me nothing more than a huge As I wanted the tusks. beaten out : had the patch of rushes thoroughly but as no traces of the lionesses could to be found. had the 200- yards sight On rectifying this. let When to try this half done. which I noticed wart-hog. came running up shouting with joy and although I warned them to be careful. my day's sport was not yet over. I fired but only badly hipped him so I ran up as fast as I could and at ten This time I missed him entirely. they did in a not seem to care in the slightest and twinkling had the dead bank. While . however. we commenced was about skin my I I fine trophy. source. might as were very fine ones. yards fired again. : and was puzzled to account for my looked at my back sight and found accident it failure until I that I by some had got raised and that up. another shot quickly put the Still wounded animal out of pain. lion lifted I Before I from the reeds on to the dry allowed anything further to be done. decided to Mahina other finish the operation. Once indeed felt it convinced all : saw one.224 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO .

Q . I caught sight of a graceful-looking antelope in the distance. the beautiful animal being bagged without much trouble.XX A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 225 rambling back through the trees. closer saw that it was an My stalk was crowned with success." and on reaching my prize I was delighted to that its horns were much above the average. 'A SUCCESSFUL SNAPSHOT OF AN IMI'ALA JUST AFTER IT HAD BEEN SHOT. been shot by a friend. another occasion I find On had was fortunate enough to get a it successful snapshot of an impala just after and the photograph gives a very good idea of what mine was like. and on cautiously approaching impala.

" I replied." ? Shot " ? he exclaimed. "why. he said. to meet one of the " other engineers. no. " answered " Yes." full : My thoughts being I of " my I adventures of the did . but how on earth did you hear of " it ? Oh " ! "Good I Reynolds told me." heavens. but to astonishment he was nowhere to be seen. As to was now growing late. " he left before shot " it." was his reply " . a fine line for the tem- porary bridge over the river. On my way back I happened called out. home long after dark and there I found Mahina and sound. so that could not find in my heart to give him the severe scolding he deserved for having Next morning I packed up returned without me. who Hallo ! I hear you have got a fine line. "that you heard I had got a fine lion ? " No." . I my fired several shots without response . all and the only conclusion I could had returned I come to was that he to the camp at the temporary bridge." " I asked. ing safe accordingly pushed on. " whatever do you mean " Didn't you say. day before. reach. and shouted myself hoarse. my trophies and returned to my work at railhead. with the I lion's skin already it pegged out to dry. I made all haste back where I had left Mahina skinning the lion.226 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO it CHAP.

which was being carried by my man me just behind me.XX A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 227 We both laughed heartily at the misunderstanding. prevent from thinking of anything Q 2 . he agreed that it was quite fine enough monopolise my thoughts and else. and when he saw my to trophy.

as whenever he was asked an awkward . but tribe. THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES A FEW Masai may still be seen on the Athi Plains.CHAPTER XXI. I While have an was stationed in the Plains managed to inter- view with the chief. from the furthest limits of itself. itself. Lenana. the majority of the tribe being now settled on the Formerly they were by far the most powerful native race in East Africa. at one of his " royal residences. He was affability presenting me with a spear and shield as a memento of the occasion but he had the reputation of being a most wily old potentate. Uganda latterly to Mombasa the Their numbers have become greatly men. are I reduced through famine and small-pox." a kraal near Nairobi. quite correct. remnant of the still more especially the a fine. clean-limbed people. but as a rule they keep away from the railway. and I found this . lithe. and when on the war-path were the terror of the whole country Laikipia Plateau.

CH. A MASAI CHIEF. xxi THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES nudge answer his 229 question. wonderfully well-organised of the warriors (elmorani] . which more than once penetrated the oppon- ent's shield. The Masai have a The military system. he would Prime Minister and I command him to for him. managed to induce him and his wives and children to sit for their photograph. and they made a very fine group indeed but unfortunately the negative turned out . very badly. I also got warrior to engage in shield. Lenana's nephew and a combat with the spear and play with their long keen and both made fine blades.

even was practically rule. of course. and . nothing of any kind was left it was their alive. Curiously enough they do not hunt game. Once to or twice I met detachments out on they these expeditions. suspended from a raw-hide waist-belt their and they certainly look very ferocious in weird-looking head-dress when on the war. for the Masai are not an agricultural people their and their wealth consists entirely in herds of cattle. path. sudden raids were constantly being made by them on the weaker tribes in the country and when a . instantly and proud boast that where a party of elmorani had passed. but were I always quite friendly alone. while the women were put to death during the night with clubs. though Before the advent of British me. As they thus live entirely on cattle. but live principally on beef and milk . kraal was captured killed all the male defenders were with the spear. sheep and goats.230 tribe THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO must attend to strictly to their CHAP. Besides the spear and shield they generally carry a sword or knobkerrie. indeed. The object of these raids was. however. although the country abounds with it. and it is also a common custom for them to drink daily a pint or so of blood taken from a live bullock. and are not allowed until after their marry or to smoke or to drink term of active service is completed. duties. The Masai. never made slaves or took prisoners. to capture live stock.

it is they have a great reverence for grass.XXI THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES 231 as cattle cannot thrive without not unnatural to find that good pasture. Being also whom they to call N'gai. They also worship a Supreme MASAI WARRIORS. of the customs of the Perhaps the most curious . but is this term is applied anything which beyond their understanding.

MASAI I re- WOMAN member once being out with a Masai one day when we came across the bleached skull of a long defunct member at of his tribe. e This xplanation seems scarcely sa tisfactory or sufficient. when lockjaw was very prevalent amonoand it the was found that still if these teeth were pulled out food could be taken. spat upon once plucked a handand then placed it very . Masai the extraction of the two front teeth from It is the lower jaw. at a said that this habit originated time tribe. ful The Masai it. of grass. I and give it only for what it is worth but : whatever the reason for the custom.232 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO is CHAP. the absence of these two teeth constitutes a most distinct ive de nt f ying i i mark. of course easily recognisable as such by the absence of the proper teeth.

The same man asked me among many other questions if my country was am afraid I was unable nearer to God than his. 233 carefully within the skull to avert evil this from himself. Another very common custom amongst them is . I MASAI GIRLS. Formerly the Masai used to spit in the face as a mark of great friendship. was done. he said.XXI THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES . but nowadays like most other native races they have adopted our English fashion of shaking hands. conscientiously to answer him in the affirmative.

are often almost completely encased with are very fond of covering these rings. indeed. while the women themselves with large Their limbs. then pierced and decorated in various ways by sticking through it a piece of wood two or three inches in diameter. rings. which I should think must be very . bells on their ankles to give notice of their approach.234 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. that of distorting the lobe of the ear it by stretching It is until it hangs down quite five or six inches. little the men wear according to fancy. beads. or MASAI WOMEN. bunches of brass-headed Nearly all nails. or a little round tin canister. and by hanging to it pieces of chain. quantities of iron or copper wire.

the Masai do not bury their dead. N'DEROBBO BOY. . as they consider this custom to be prejudicial to the soil the bodies are simply carried some little . and the more she possesses the higher does she stand in the social scale.XXI THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES : 235 heavy and uncomfortable but no Masai woman considers herself a lady of fashion without them. As a rule.

remains a large across one of mound is also raised.ABVS MONKEY. but found and opened possibly I it nothing : did not pursue my search deep enough .236 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO left CHAP. I came these mounds one day near Tsavo very carefully. for The honour chief. distance from the village and to be devoured of burial by birds and wild is beasts. reserved only a great over whose N'DEROBBO OY. WITH COLI.

however.XXI THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES 237 into the earth. N DEROBBO GIRL. and keep . who. unlike their over-lords. In general. right and honourable savage and it is a great pity that they are gradually dying out. the Masai are an uprace. or less serfs of the Masai are the Wa N'derobbo. are a race of They are seldom to be in met with. More hunters. as they hide away caves and thickets.

the Wa Kikuyu have a . and the girls. which hide. situated in the very thickest patches of forest that they can and their cattle kraals are especially strongly built and carefully hidden. use the spear and . with the exception of the Masai. They live in little villages composed of beehive huts and always find. and was much amazed to notice what labour and ingenuity had been expended on its construc- managed after a great deal of difficulty all-fours tion. and in the Kenya Province. however. moving from place to place following the Not long ago I saw a few of them in the : neighbourhood of the Eldama Ravine but these were more or less civilised. Unlike the Masai. in is slung round the waist by a belt of raw filed to Their front teeth are a sharp point all the same manner as those of nearly the other native tribes of East Africa. to On one occasion I and crawling on make my way into one of these kraals. constantly game.238 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. district from Nairobi to the Kedong River. but Like the latter. is the bow and poisoned arrow. They also frequently carry a rudely made two-edged short sword in a sheath. had abandoned the native undress costume In the for flowing white robes. they not nearly so good-looking. though of a different shape their principal weapon. who were quite graceful. shield. who are similar to the Masai in build. dwell the Wa Kikuyu.

flour is made). . sugar-cane. sweet potatoes. and grow crops of kind of native grain from which WA KIKUYU. and tobacco.xxi THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES good m'tama idea (a 239 fairly of agriculture.

in He left me to go up out to the the transport. murdered by some members of this tribe. with whom I lived for a few months at Tsavo. finding Kikuyu country and as he was keenly charge of interested in about the tropical diseases from which the animals suffered. he made it his custom all to dissect the bodies of those that died. The Wa Kikuyu have the reputation people. of being a very cowardly and treacherous and they have undoubtedly committed some very cruel deeds. Captain Haslem. The superstitious Wa Kikuyu were fully convinced that .240 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. was barbarously WA KIKUYU. A friend of mine.

found them not nearly so black as they "THE WOMEN OF THE \VA KIKUYU CARRY THE HEAVY LOADS. however. which at the time were dying in scores from rinderpest. of them working at one thing or another at Nairobi and never had any trouble with them. So instigated no doubt by the all-powerful witch-doctor killed they treacherously I him.XXI THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES 241 by this he bewitched their cattle. For my part. On the contrary I found them well-behaved and intelligent to learn." I had about four hundred had been painted to me. the women Wa Kikuyu do the manual labour of R . all and most anxious As is the case with of the other African races.

Notwithstanding this some of them are quite pleasant looking. xxi the village and carry the heavy loads for their lords and masters. the bundles being held in position on their back by a strap passing round the forehead. do not object to being photo- graphed. but then that scarcely considered a sin in the heart of Africa. They are clothed (to use Mark Twain's expression) in little but a smile. about the best of the East African . perhaps. being considered ample raiment are modest in their nevertheless they ways and are on the whole tribes.242 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. devoted a agriculture and hospitable in the extreme addicted to thieving. Of They to little is the other tribes to be met with in this part of the world. the Kavirondo are the most interesting. simple people. and once they have overcome their fear of the European. a bead or two here and there . are an industrious.

and Shortly he suggested that we should go for a shooting expedition on the morrow. enough was consequently most anxious after his arrival. and that I should trot out for his benefit one of the local lions.CHAPTER XXII LIFE HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY ON May work to 12 railhead reached the Athi River. as there be was a great deal of miscellaneous done. so far not been fortunate the goods- Now to Brock had lion. I Of course I was always ready should be delighted for a hunt when it was said I possible for " me we were held up to get " away. joined quite unexpectedly by my who had shared wagon by one of the exciting adventure with in me at Tsavo the night we were attacked the man-eaters. I could R 2 . Brock. I was friend Dr. our headquarters remained established for after some little time. in we had settled down One day not long our new camp. to bag a do so. accordingly. and as just at the time by the Athi River. where.

however. in the world. one of was my Indian servants. slit Roshan Khan. We should thus have a better chance of catching one of the lords of the plain as he returned from his nightly depredations to the kindly shelter of the tall grass river. decided to make wanted a very knew that the most I likely place for some distance away.244 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO off quite easily. CHAP. lithe and active. as lions lay I accompany us I as beaters to be ready before dawn. . for if my shikar would in next day. and possible to get there if by daybreak. looked care- fully to our rifles and ammunition. it (hunting) was This request sleepily granted. it camp. put in his head through the at my tent door and asked leave to accompany the I " Sahibs" the morning so that he might see what shikar like. manage a day filled So we made the usual preparations for a day's absence from camp our water-bottles with tin of sardines in tea. and honest and pleasant-looking. and just as dozing off to sleep. he had not accompanied all probability have ended disastrously He was a very dusky- coloured young Pathan about twenty years of age. and warned the to "boys" who were early start. put a loaf of bread and a our haversacks. I and rushes which fringed the banks of the We therefore retired to rest early. thinking that could make little difference whether in all he came with us or stayed behind things turned out. As made the differ- ence us.

As soon we extended in the source was Dr. Brock also wanted a wildebeeste. when I noticed a big herd of wildebeeste browsing quietly I some distance to our right. though we advanced through many patches of rushes and long It was grass likely to conceal our expected quarry. order we trudged steadily forward for a couple of miles without coming across anything. being placed in the most likely position for a shot. line.xxu HOW ROSHAN KHAN He much SAVED MY LIFE for 245 as Pathans go. so I whistled softly to him. He came across at I once and started off towards the herd. had been my "boy" : some attached to me. bison-like antelopes. this time and was was the reason why he stuck so close to me throughout the hunt. and pointed out the weirdthat knew looking. as we never knew but that a lion might the next moment jump up at our very feet. thoroughly way towards dawn. while sat . We had just beaten through a most hopeful-looking covert without success and had come out on to a beautiful open grassy glade which stretched away for some distance ahead of us. indeed. most interesting and exciting work all the same. while close behind Roshan Khan followed In this me with the day's provisions. Brock. as the guest. breakfasted by candle light and We of the managed as it to get several miles on our Athi before daylight. besides having a touching faith in my prowess in shikar probably.

" I will show "Come. on as the Indians called the natives of the interior . or savages a and looking in in round Indian his I saw file.246 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO to CHAP. slim Masai approaching spear each carrying six-foot right hand. Some time elapsed I still sat without a shot. until at last they disappeared over one of the gentle rises which are such a feature of the Athi Plains. came the stereotyped reply. On coming in nearer. shenzi ata hain /" " ! (" Look. expecting every moment to hear the sound of Brock's rifle. He made really a beautiful difficult still which was rendered by the open nature of the very country. when Roshan Khan suddenly exclaimed excitedly : " Dekko. however." filled This " me " ? with interest at once. "What ") does " ? the " Bwana Makubwa (" Great Master desire Simba" ("Lions"). down watch stalk. " M'bali kidogo (" A little distance "). but approach and kept steadily moving on. I was not alarmed at this somewhat all startling announcement. and follow I was just about to him up and find out how things were going. you many. Sahib. the leader of the party eagerly asked Swahili. Sahib. . the wildebeeste quickly noticed his and waited. in the least the savages are coming ). the proceedings. said I. I " How far away are they asked. five tall. of Africa shenzi." he replied.

Master . and at once caught sight I of a lioness trotting off behind the bushes. so. a low and closer at the object made me look aroused I growl which had first sinister my suspicions.xxn I HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY LIFE 247 immediately had a good look round for Brock. and called out to the Masai to know where his lions were but he . I which completely hid pulled up short . also saw some suspicious-looking thing at the foot of one of the big trees. vouchsafed me no answer and continued to walk steadily on. however. he extended his spear in a most dramatic : manner. it To my surprise and delight saw that was the head of a huge black-maned tree. in case the " lions should get many away in the meantime. I began to get impatient at the long tramp. lion peering out from behind the trunk of the his body. there are the lions. As usual. casting little I keen glances ahead. I looked. I was soon to be undeceived. I told the Masai to lead the way. and pointing to a clump of trees just ahead. but came to the conclusion that it was only a growth of some kind projecting from the trunk. for as I started to run towards the trees in order to cut off the fast disappearing lioness from a stretch of rushes for which she was making. the mbali kidogo proved a good distance in this case. " After a " time Where are the lions ? This again asked. over two miles Indeed. " but could see no sign of him. and off we started." exclaimed " Look.

opened in an angry snarl that I could see plainly what he really was. but the fourth stood broadside on. For a few seconds we stood thus and looked again and made not get a fair shot at him from where with I then he growled As I could off after the lioness. and talking and gesticulating This gave at once me fifty a splendid chance for a shoulder shot at about yards' distance. I ran all my might for a point of vantage from which might have a better chance of bagging him as he passed. In the twinkling of an eye three of them had disappeared after their lord in long. I stood. not at me. and stared Although he was not seventy difficult yards away from me. brought to a full stop in the middle of my race by seeing no less than four more lionesses jump up from the covert which the lion had just left. low bounds. and on looking over . but at followers. CHAP. so after I knelt fired taking careful aim. at each other .248 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO at him. he kept his head perfectly still. yet owing to the nature of the background especially as steadily at it was very to make him out. looking. down The and dis- lioness appeared from sight instantly. had almost got beyond the surprise stage where lions were concerned yet I must admit that I was thoroughly startled and Now by this time I . my who by this time were grouped together excitedly. gazing It was only when the great mouth me.

he made whether he quite a long halt. and was delighted him fast but I had I . Here he stood. I viciously. Fortunately he was travelling leisurely. but to He soon caught sight of him again. running towards him. who could see him afterwards told was up all to . a run to try feared that the check with once more the lioness might have lost him to me altogether. my had not made off very quickly. above which the lion perceived When me only his head showed. where he was half hidden by some low bushes. threatening growls. he took up his station under a tree. the time. at an altitude of more than 5. leaves one very breathless at the end of it. however.xxn HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY I LIFE 249 the top of the grass saw that my shot had told. to find that still to was gaining on run about two hundred I yards at my best pace.000 feet above sea-level. he had decided that discretion was the better part of valour. wjiile I set off I to catch up the relief lion. watching my at vent to his anger every movement and giving my presence in low. Evidently. I did . and had probably I stopped several times to see what I indeed the men. which. clawing the air and growling As she looked to me to be done for. me that when he heard the growl of rage from the lioness after she was shot. shouted to some of the men to remain behind and at watch her. apparently deliberating should return to her rescue. as she was on her back.

there was no shelter so. that it was all could . however. and soon the growling and commotion ceased. shot. pulled the trigger. not at like the look of him. world so. I should certainly have scrambled up it into safety before attempting to fire." spite was a most exciting moment. and all was still. keenly anxious to finish him off before he could charge out and cover the short distance which separated us. as I of any kind at hand meant to I him at all costs. my arms were so I so breathless after my I shaky.250 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO all CHAP. As a matter for of fact. do to keep the sight on the fierce-looking target and I thought to myself. sixty yards from him. but in of the risk I would not have missed it for the . as the rifle barrel wobbled about. I sat down where have a try was. Instantly the shaggy head disappeared from view. and covered his great with and was my rifle. so I called up one of the men to stay and watch the . and such a succession of angry roars and growls of the bushes that I came up out and felt was fairly startled. I therefore fired half a dozen shots into the bushes at the spot where I imagined he lay. " If will I don't knock him over with the and then first he be out of these bushes and down on I me like greased lightning It know what to expect. . about head run. I was confident the brute was dead. and if there had been another tree close by. taking as steady an aim as was possible in I the circumstances.

By signal I ordered them to advance in line on the thicket in which the lioness had just taken refuge. to find the man had told to watch him still I on guard. where I decided to leave her . as when one to spring hunting from nowhere in these plains natives in the most mysterious in the manner. expecting. and I had consequently to wait until she got almost to the edge of the rushes. found that To my my intense vexation.xxn HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY LIFE I 251 place. at Brock should arrive. had joined the sentry had deserted his post and . while I took up my position on one side. and out she sprang into the open. while speed jumpover such rocks and bushes as came in my way ing to have a shot at a lioness that was still in sight. so as to obtain a good shot when she broke covert. some of the natives masked my fire. however. as the river. The line of natives shouting their native cries and striking their spears together soon disturbed her. and attach themselves to one obtaining hope of some portion of the kill. again rushed off at full By seem this time my followers is numbered about thirty men. of course. Whether or not I hit her then I cannot say escape into until I any rate. now retraced my steps towards the spot where I had shot the I lion. she made good her the reeds. to making for a clump of rushes close Unfortunately she broke out at the most unfavourable spot from my point of view.

At last one of the lion men sang at the he had found the same time running away from the spot as hard as ever he could. He was . curiosity. gesticulating wildly and chattering each in his all own language. other of the party. was not so easy as might be thought the chase after the lioness had taken us some distance from where I had shot him. A number of those nearest to him. and as there were numbers of trees fell. and by the time I got up. but I had no intention of losing so a trophy. some half-dozen of them were in case gathered in a group at the lion's tail. it about similar to that under which he really a very difficult matter to hit was upon the right out joyfully that place. and On getting near I very pleased and excited. . and was told that he was nearly so. obedience was that now the dead lion or. by any chance he might not be dead but they paid little heed to the warning. and thus going over the whole place thoroughly. so jungle into began a systematic search. asked if the lion was dead. had more courage or at the beast. . The task of finding him. dividing the strips.252 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO men left CHAP. both Indians and natives. but that he still breathed. having become frightened of tell I by himself. rather. however. I to I have a look and went up shouted to them as hurried along to be careful and not to go too near. I when The I result his dis- could not where lay the lion which believed to fine be dead .

however. was more delighted than can he was indeed a very fine specimen. I almost trod on Roshan Khan. a way I hope never When this perilous situation so I unexpectedly developed itself. He still breathed regularly. and made I for the nearest trees with one exception. I assumed that he was on the point of death and unable to rise. he suddenly diabolical ferocity. with fury. who had still remained I close behind me. was not more than The instant the lion rose. belief.xxii HOW ROSHAN KHAN full I SAVED MY LIFE I 253 lying at length on his side. and as I stepped back I fired. for as took a step backwards. Possessed with this very foolishly allowed my curiosity to run away with my caution. and stepped round to have a The moment I came into his look at his head. as his admiring him. and when saw him I at close quarters tell. keeping my eye on the infuriated animal. his feet. all the men fled as if the Evil One himself were after them. as if became possessed of a With a great roar he sprang to . me. yard of him. in exposing his tusks and teeth to witness again. three paces away from him. for flanks heaved with each respiration still absolutely with all the men but as he lay jabbering within a . Fortunately for had approached the lion's head with my rifle The impact ready. he were quite unhurt his eyes blazed and his lips were drawn well back. For a moment or two I stood with the group of natives. I view. .

had swung round rifle after . and again time I at thought that nothing on earth could save me. as I was almost within his clutches. levelled my and fired but whether because of the speed at which he was going. it now became my turn to do all I could to save him. for just at this moment Roshan Khan seemed all at once to critical realise the danger of the situation. it if this were possible. or because of my over-anxiety " to save my boy ". gave chase instead to the yelling Roshan Khan having thus unwittingly rescued me from my perilous position. of the "303 bullet threw just as he haunches was in the act of springing. but fired point blank at him from my instant hip. but in an he was up again and coming for me so quickly that I had not even time to raise my rifle to my shoulder. Beyond all question this movement saved me. he fugitive. sight of something darting away from him diverted and following his the lion's attention from me. I missed him completely. Help came from an unexpected muzzle of my and this and unconscious quarter. delaying him for a second or so as before.254 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO him back on his CHAP. and suddenly fled for his screaming and shrieking with all his might. and saw the bullet raise the dust at the heels of a . for the life. natural instinct. He the was up again like rifle . I In far less time than takes to tell the story. the pursuing lion. lightning.

he came broadside on to me. if Roshan Khan was lion all as in I was not sure whether the had succeeded mauling him or not. the magazine. was he able a glance at to spare to cast beneath. stone-dead. The sight that met my eyes turned tragedy into comedy in an instant. and seemed hopeless terrified save poor Roshan this Khan from over his clutches. This gave me time to run up and give him a final shot. the of the sight brute his left youth caught shoulder. earnestly bent on getting to the very topmost branch as quickly as ever he could climb . indeed. however. not a moment. and providentially made a quick swerve to the right.xxii HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY LIFE Like lightning I 255 flying Masai. Just at moment. was so utterly absurd that I half-way up a thorn tree. he dropped in the middle of what would otherwise assuredly have been the fatal spring bowled over with a broken shoulder. and with a deep roar he fell back full length on the grass. and just as he had Roshan Khan within striking distance and was about to seize him. and made me roar with laughter. it threw myself down on the grass and rolled over and over. I then looked round to see right. indeed. but now it loaded again from the lion was within a spring to expect to of his prey. For there was Roshan Khan. As the lion turned to follow him. what "was happening His puggaree had been torn off by one . convulsed with uncontrollable mirth.

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO . he had terrified. been thoroughly and little wonder. between himself and the dead could stop laughing. Finally the whole audience roared with delight when another tree bolted as fast as he could to Roshan Khan's after him. CHAP. Ta " and cracking his fingers to represent the rifle-shots. but quite the tree in vain. some three or four of them beginning at once to act the whole adventure. My shelter followers now began various to of the trees emerge from the and bushes where after they had flight concealed themselves lion. who immediately ran backwards just as I had done. and his long white cotton gown was torn to ribbons in his mad endeavour to put as great a distance as possible lion. Poor fellow. Ta. their wild from the resuscitated and crowded round dead body in the highest spirits. There was no stopping him. with the pseudo lion roaring of these proceedings At the end up came . The Masai. especially. and waved gracefully in the breeze a fancy waistcoat adorned another spiky branch. indeed. I As soon him to as I called out to come down. seemed delighted at the way in which he his had been defeated. shouting " Ta. One played the part of the lion and jumped growling at a comrade.256 thorn. and to my surprise and amusement proved themselves excellent mimics. until he had reached the very top of . duced to and even then he could scarcely be income down again.

We then left gave her Mahina and the other men all to skin the two beasts. You are the wards. he rightly considered had first thought. when. we were walking over the undulating ground a short distance from the river. and his After- remark was. It jumped I as it lay wallowing to its feet instantly I and came it. on gaining the top of a gentle rise. Separated by about a hundred yards or so. and went on to the rushes where the second lioness had taken cover. tree. when he heard full story of the adventure. and as had no wish the knoll. to shoot made a dash for cover round On reaching s . however. she was still very much when to a we reached neighbouring her. who gave me rather a fright and induced Brock to indulge in some lively exercise. I suddenly came upon the ungainly animal in a hollow. for I where stood. Here see no our efforts to turn her out failed. more Our only other adventure was with a stolid old rhino. 257 Brock. Like her alive mate. attracted to the place by the to sound of the see first He was much astonished a lucky beggar " ! my fine dead " lion lying stretched out. so I stalked carefully I up from whose shelter the finishing shot.xxii HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY LIFE who had been firing. so we to reluctantly abandoned the chase and were fated lions that day. me even more lucky than he Our next which I business was to go back to the lioness first had shot and left for dead.

with perhaps the exception Roshan Khan. When in he got about half-way to the tree. It was a most comical sight. and doing so put his foot in a hole in the ground. his rifle flying from his grasp. We of made our way back camp with our of us. but confident that Brock. all finished skinning the to two lions. the top of the the rhino winded its and once changed Brock lost no time at direction my companion and made for him. failing (I suppose) to understand it. After this we returned to the scene of my morning's adventure. and I sat on the rise and for the second time that day laughed till my sides ached. would manage far his off. some distance while I I sat down and it watched the exciting race. but to my intense relief the old rhino I stopped dead when he saw the catastrophe which had taken place. he turned to see how pursuer was behind. in expected the great brute to be on him a moment. suddenly made off in the opposite direction as hard as he could go. and raced for dear life to the tree without ever looking round. CHAP. . In the meantime Brock had got to his feet again. to pull it who was very active.258 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO rise. and to my horror fell head over heels. well satisfied with the day's outing. in in putting on his best pace an endeavour stood to reach the shelter of a tree which off. and then. however. felt thought would be a pretty close thing. where we found that the invaluable Mahina had accordingly trophies.

s 2 . had only to ask whether he would like to come and see some more shikar.xxii HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY LIFE afterwards I 259 Whenever I wanted to chaff this " boy ". He would then look very solemn. Sir "). shake his head emphatically and assure me " Kabhi nahin. Sahib " (" Never again.

amused by for the bustle at the small wayside station we had just built. therefore. had been out in the broiling superintending the sun ever since daylight construction of banks and cuttings and the erection of temporary bridges. too tired I drink. On returning to my hut. Here and anything beyond a long cool rested for an hour or so. and from dawn to dark exerted ourselves to the very utmost.CHAPTER XXIII A SUCCESSFUL LION HUNT WHEN the Athi river section of the line to had been bridged. with a great deal of clanking and puffing. idly watching our tiny construction engine forging its -way. the Nairobi was pushed forward as rapidly as possible. was touch-and-go whether it would manage to get its heavy load of rails and sleepers to the top of It . threw myself into a long deck chair. up a steep gradient just across the river. at I about three o'clock in the afternoon. we all One day and I (May 28) the weather was exceptionally hot.

in fact. On hearing the usual salutation. and contest that I became so interested in the between steam and friction did not notice that a visitor and gravity. returned his salutation. stood for a moment with the right hand held out on a level with his shoulder. his old bones cracking two and lions. xxiii A SUCCESSFUL LION HUNT I 261 the incline or not. and asked him what he wanted. however. I forgot everything that was not directly connected with the Even the old savage excitement of lion-hunting.' when he saw how keen I was about both lions him with questions were they or lionesses ? had they manes ? how far I plied away were they? and so on.CH. " they have just it." he said. Naturally. forgot that I was tired and hungry . Before answering." killed a zebra are now devouring On hearing this I straightway forgot that I had already done a hard I day's work in the full blaze of an equatorial sun . turned round and saw a lean and withered half-bred Masai. to the last " fyrbali kidogo" question he was bound to answer . clothed in a very inadequate piece of wildebeeste hide which was merely slipped under the left arm and He looped up in a knot over the right shoulder. on his heels. at my feet grinned it. he dropped down " I want to lead the Great Master to as he did so. the fingers extended and the palm turned towards me I all indicating that he came on a friendly visit. had approached I and was standing quietly beside me.

our guide extended a long skinny finger and said " proudly. the upshot was that in a very few minutes I had a mule saddled. and with the old Masai as guide.262 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO course they were not far away . On using my field-glasses. even more scantily the On joined by some attired than our guide. who happened from camp just at the moment. as he was afraid that they would seize all the zebra-meat that the lions had not However. and within an hour six miles still there was no sign . We travelled at a fully had covered of lions. good pace. I told him not to bother. However. to be absent the District Engineer. Of nothing ever is to a native of East Africa. also left word my friend Spooner. CHAP. Wa way we were Kamba. about six hundred yards off were a lion and a lioness busily engaged on the carcase of a zebra. Master"). I Tazama. and soon a dispute arose between these hangers-on and the old Masai. Eventually. and sure enough. started off accompanied by my I faithful Mahina and another the skin for if I coolie to help to bring home should prove successful. that I had gone after two lions. getting to the low crest of one of the long swells in the ground. and that I would look after him all right. on already eaten. in Bwana " (" See. who refused to allow them to accompany us. I . but to hurry up and show me the lions. looked the direction in which he pointed. but hoped to be back by nightfall.

the way. the lion following her at a more leisurely trot. ground. As soon as they left . While I was thus studying at the picture. in this and putting his claws well manner tore off great strips of the hide. and then the lioness bolted. coming up selves on the to the top of the showed themat once. when the lion would make a him and scare him away. The little jackal looked most ridiculous. inactivity. by than he crept nearer again. I except a jackal or a was also interested to notice the way in which the lion got at the flesh of the zebra . he took a short run at the body. scampering off before short rush at the huge beast with his tail well down . They allowed me to come a hundred yards or so nearer them. for it so I started to walk did not slope in the required direction in open in a sidelong direction towards the formidable-looking pair. that a lion will eat every kind of animalincluding even other lions hyaena. but no sooner did the lion stop and return to his meal The natives say. nor any chance of taking advantage the of the rolling .xxin A SUCCESSFUL LION HUNT to observe a jackal in attendance 263 was amused the pair. sky-line. my and followers became impatient my rise. close to on Every now and then he would come too the zebra. There was not an atom of cover to be seen. into the skin. The lions saw them turning round and standing erect to stare at them.

evidently hard hit in a few seconds more she lay perfectly still.264 T HE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO my CHAP. but the lion continued to move steadily away. and I saw that . As soon as they saw me following them up. as deserved. in the event of a charge. I could plainly make out her light-coloured form in the grass. and which would leave a deep natural hollow between us. rush for so that it. to restore order I had and leave a coolie he to see that our guide got the largest share. and galloped as hard as luckily found the pair still jumped on could my mule him. she was dead. so as to give me a better chance. and then to appeared over the brow. By this time Mahina and the other Indian. In an instant she was kicking on her back and tossing about. I now turned my attention to the lion. African following made a and began a fierce fight over the remains. the body of the zebra. of bowling her over as she came up the rise towards me. with three or . who mean- while had disappeared over another rise. Accordingly I made for a point which would bring me about two hundred yards to the right of the lioness. In the meantime the lion. and after in sight when I reached the top of the rise. and took careful aim and fired. hearing the o 7 noise of the squabble. the lioness took covert in some long grass that almost concealed her when she lay down. halted on the hill crest of the dis- to take a deliberate look at I I me.

xxni four of up. offering shot. and advanced to within two We hundred yards or getting uneasy. when. rise when one Wa Kamba spotted the dark brown head of it the brute as he raised for an instant above the grass in order to watch us. I lay motionless in the grass and succeeded admirably. the lion still remained quiet. Nor was for we had scarcely topped the next of the disappointed. I rested the on . for as the men moved round to so did the lion. however. so felt A SUCCESSFUL LION the disappointed started off in a HUNT 265 Wa body Kamba. taking the mule with them. then decided to put into practice the scheme thought out the day I sat astride the lion killed I I had had on the Kapiti Plain : so I told all my followers move off to the right. I me at last a splendid shoulder took very careful. Mahina's back for the next shot. and to make a half-circle round the animal. had come in pursuit we of him. with the result that he rolled over and over. pretended not to have seen him. and again missed I fortunately. however. lurking I somewhere that if I the grass not far and knew could depend upon the native eye to find him he showed so I much as the tip of his ear. while The ruse waited. I I so. in I sure that he was off. at this range. as he seemed to be it thought best to risk a shot even put up the 2ooyards sight and the . fifty Raising rifle the sight another yards. steady aim and fired. and . bullet fell short but the lion never moved.

busy doing this.266 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO made one as CHAP. one of the at While we were suddenly Wa Kamba drew my attention to the fact that being stalked at that lions. A final shot laid him out. At the time I little knew next what a stirring adventure was in store for me day while in pursuit of these same brutes. and twisted round so shoulders as to face me. and we once proceeded to skin him. the railway. but the men I morrow were unable sure that to find sent out to do the job on any trace of her lay. The lioness I thought I should leave to be skinned the back to next day the . so without delay we started on our way camp. for I they probably missed the place where she am I killed her. and through both he was still game. then I or two attempts to get up but failed. which was about seven miles off. and the last few miles do by the guidance of the Tramping over . we were actually very moment by two other who eventually approached to within five hun- dred yards' distance and then lay down to watch us skinning their dead brother. giving vent all the time to savage helpless bullet he was with a growls. then ran up to within a few yards of him. It was a good two hours I after night had fallen before we got anywhere near was obliged to stars. their big shaggy heads rising every now and again above the grass to give us a prolonged stare. It was almost dark when the skinning process was finished. however.

Spooner and I had often had many friendly arguments in regard to the comparative courage of the lion and the tiger. he holding the view that . Spooner had become nervous about me. order to guide to me. fired guessed once that was by I my good friend Spooner signal I . over a mile away. and wished myself and my men safely back Indeed. about must have it. and on getting plain the top of the next saw the in front of me I all twinkling with not lights. telling had I down comfortably to dinner fired him of Spooner's sporting ardour by the fine pair of lions who had watched us skinning their companion. When he found that had returned by nightfall. and we agreed at once to go out next day and try to bag them both. heartily was by no means pleasant work. settled which was still When we that night. had come out with a number of the workmen I in camp in to search for me in the direction had taken the afternoon. and fearing that I had met with some mishap. while to have his was equally glad escort and company back to camp.xxin A SUCCESSFUL LION HUNT 267 the plain on a pitch-dark night. when my to my was beginning to think that I bearings and was getting anxious relief I I heard a at in rifle shot about it half a mile ahead of us. so gave a reply rise. lost I I in camp. He was delighted to find lion's skin me safe and sound and with a I as a trophy. with lions and rhino all about.

or wound African him.268 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO foe. xxm I. but get him in the mood. maintained from lively personal experience that the lion when once roused was unequalled was in fact the for pluck and daring. CH. and most dangerous enemy at times slink off one could meet with. He may and not show fight . the fray at least. . "Stripes" was the more formidable while though admitting to the full the courage of the tiger. lions. and only his death or yours will end that. I experience of East think that Spooner has now come was my round to my opinion. his conversion taking place the next day in a very melancholy manner.

and realised that we were indeed in the midst of a favourite haunt of the king of beasts. but quite another to listen to in the vicinity him when he is ramping of one's fragile tent. According to our over-night arrangement. it I was quite midday before we made ready ought to mention before going further that as a rule Spooner declined my company on shooting trips. we were up betimes in the morning. as he was convinced that I should get . with a single blow he could tear to pieces. It is one thing to hear a lion in captivity. when one knows he around is safe behind iron bars . start.CHAPTER XXIV BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKAR LONG awake after I had retired to to rest that night in I lay listening roar answering roar every direction round our camp. which Still. but as there was a great deal of work to be done before we could get to away. all this roaring was of good omen for the next day's sport.

Spooner's Indian own gun-boy Mahina." Now it may seem a strange plan to is go lion-hunting in a tonga. while I always did my best to defend the On this 303 which I was in the habit of using.270 " THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO " CHAP. we set off is early in the afternoon in Spooner's tonga. sooner or later if I persisted in going scuppered " after lions with a popgun. and certainly almost proved disastrous. occasion we effected a compromise for the day. rode a in the tonga. has precisely the same in this instance action it as one's own . Having thus seen to our rifles and ammunition in the and taken care also that some brandy was put luncheon-basket in case of an accident. which a two-wheeled cart with a hood over consisted of Spooner it. rifle I accepting the loan of his spare 12 -bore as a second gun in case I should get to close quarters. But my experience has been that it is always a very dangerous thing to rely on a borrowed gun or unless it rifle. my and myself. Imam Din." as he contemptuously termed my '303. and two other Indians. he being a firm believer (and rightly) in a heavy weapon for big and dangerous game. but there no better way of getting about country like the Athi Plains. while the other led " spare horse called Blazeaway. one of whom. The party shikari Bhoota. this was rather a bone of contention between us. so where long as it is dry there is little or . Indeed.

good rate. and on the way bagged a hartebeeste and a couple of gazelle. 271 nothing to obstruct wheeled Once at a started. struck no doubt by the npvel appearance of our conveyance. a slight covered with long grass but there was now no trace of them to be discovered. to stalk a solitary He was highly pleased admirably. and did the job I At t\vo last we reached the spot where had seen the hollow. little After some time the excitement began by our spying the black-tipped ears of a lioness projecting above the grass. most tempting shots. lions on the previous day . they both turned and slowly trotted lion stopping the every now and again to gaze round in our direction. as he thus turned us. After staring fixedly at us in an inquiring sort of way as we slowly advanced upon off. so we moved further on and had another good beat round. for they stood stock-still gazing at us.xxiv BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKJR traffic. Very imposing and majestic he looked. who was a wary shikari and an old bull. them. they offered we rattled over the smooth expanse . Next we came upon a herd of wildebeeste. and here we allowed Bhoota. too. at this favour. and the next moment a very fine lion arose from beside her and gave us a full view of his grand head and mane. defiantly towards shaggy head and Spooner had to admit his great . as fresh meat was badly needed in camp besides. servant of Spooner's.

whence we caught sight of them about four hundred yards away. he had ever seen. For a while but rinding at length that they were getting away from us and lost to we followed them on foot would soon be ground. nearer As there seemed to be no we decided to open fire At first I prospect of getting at this range. she rose to her feet and followed the grass who had escaped uninjured. although evidently . hit. and at the third shot the lioness tumbled over to my 303. intendthe thicket in ing to come out again the next day to track the . so we drove on as hard as we could to the top. into by the the pair on rounding the however. as for a few minutes she lay on the ground kicking and struggling but in the end. they were nowhere to be seen. quickly the tonga and galloped round the base of the knoll so as to cut off their the excitement of the rough and bumpy ride being intensified a hundredfold probability of our driving slap rise. into some long from which we could not hope to dislodge it them.done for her.272 that it THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO was the finest sight CHAP. thought I had . and as there to seemed possibility of inducing the lions which they had concealed themselves. On getting to the other side. we turned back towards camp. badly lion. As leave was now no late in the afternoon. . sight over a bit into of rising we jumped retreat.

we once commenced a cautious advance on the crouching lions. when they off. for they came slowly towards me for about ten yards or so and then lay down. I suddenly surprised us by turning and bolting T . lions not I Suddenly I felt " " was startled to see two fine the pair more than a hundred yards away. shied badly at a hyaena." and he whipped up the ponies a moment or two was beside me with the had seized at tonga. which sprang up out of the grass almost from beneath his when suddenly he and quickly scampered off. I 273 wounded and was trotting was now riding " Blazeaway " along in advance of the tonga. I I me " steadily all the called out to Spooner. watching time. We sit down comfortably to " " pot them. and on looking over my left shoulder to discover the reason. They looked they meant to dispute our passage. wondering whether he were worth a shot. evidently which I had seen the day before and which really we had as if come in search of. I pulled up for a moment and sat watching the hyaena's ungainly bounds. the arrangement being that Spooner was to take the right-hand one had got to within sixty yards' range without incident and were just about to and I the other. Here are the lions told in and you about. feet Blazeaway trembling violently beneath me. By this time so I my '303 and dis- mounted.xxiv BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKAR lioness.

274

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO

CHAP.

managed, however, to put a bullet into the one I had marked just as he crested a bank, and he
looked very grand as he reared up against the For a sky and clawed the air on feeling the lead. second or two he gave me the impression that he

was about

to charge

;

but luckily he changed his

mind and followed
escaped scot
"

his
I

companion, who had so
"

far

away

Blazeimmediately mounted and galloped off in hot pursuit, and after
free.
stiff

about half a mile of very them once more. Finding
get away,

going got up with
that they could not
to

now

they

halted,

came

bay and

then

charged down upon me, the wounded lion leading. I had left my rifle behind, so all I could do was to
turn

could go, Blazeaway praying inwardly the while that he would not put When the lions saw that they his foot into a hole.
fly

and

as

fast

as

"

"

were unable to overtake me, they gave up the chase and lay down again, the wounded one being about

two hundred yards in front of the other. At once I pulled up too, and then went back a little way, keeping a careful eye upon them and I continued
;

these tactics of riding up and
distance until Spooner

down

at a respectful
rifles,

came up with the
it

when

we renewed the attack. As a first measure I thought
able the unhurt lion 303,
I

advisable to disstill

using the got him with the second shot at a range of
if

possible, and,

xxiv

BHOOTA'S LAST SHIK4R

275

about three hundred yards. He seemed badly hit, for he sprang into the air and apparently fell heavily. I then exchanged my -303 for Spooner's spare 12bore
lion,
rifle,

and we turned our attention
all this

to the nearer
still,

who

time had been lying perfectly

watching our movements closely, and evidently just waiting to be down upon us the moment we came
within charging distance. opportunity,

He was

never given

this

however,

for

nearer than ninety yards,

we did not approach when Spooner sat down

comfortably and knocked him over quite dead with one shot from his '577, the bullet entering the left
shoulder obliquely and passing through the heart. It was now dusk, and there was no time to be
lost
if

we meant

to

bag the second

lion

as well.

resumed our cautious advance, moving to the right as we went, so as to get behind us what The lion of course light there was remaining.
twisted round in the grass in such a
to
I

We therefore

way

as always

keep facing us, and looked very ferocious, so that was convinced that unless he were entirely disfirst

abled by the
a whirlwind.

shot he would be
I

down on

us like

All the same,

felt

confident that,

even

in

this

event, one

of us would

succeed

in
;

stopping

but

in

him before he could do any damage I was unfortunately to be proved this

mistaken.

Eventually we managed to get within eighty yards T 2

276

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
I

CHAP.

of the enraged animal,
to

being about

five

yards

the

left

front
at

of Spooner,

who was

followed

by Bhoota
rear.

By

about the same distance to his right this time the lion was beside himself

with fury, growling savagely and raising quite a cloud of dust by lashing his
It
tail

against the ground.

was

clearly high

time
fire,
I

that
I

we

did something,

so asking Spooner to

dropped on one knee
in suspense, for the

and waited. Nor was

kept long

moment Spooner's shot rang out, up jumped the lion and charged down in a bee-line for me, coming in
I fired the right low bounds at great speed. barrel at about fifty yards, but apparently missed the

long,

;

left

at

effect.

about half that range, still without stopping I knew then that there was no time to reload,

so remained kneeling, expecting

him

to be

on me the

Suddenly, just as he was within a bound of me, he made a quick turn to my right.
next moment.

"Good
flash

heavens,"
I

I

thought,
in this,

"he

is

going

for

Spooner."

was wrong

however,

for like a

he passed Spooner also, and with a last tremendous bound seized Bhoota by the leg and rolled
over and over with

him

for

some yards
throat,

in

the

impetus of the rush.

Finally he

stood over him

and

tried

to

seize

him by the
into
at

which the
stuffing

brave fellow prevented by courageously
his
left
!

arm

right

the
the

great
critical

jaws.

Poor

Bhoota

By moving

moment, he

xxiv

BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKAR
diverted the
lion's

277

had

attention

from

me and

had drawn the whole fury of the charge on to
himself.

All this, of course,

happened

in

only a second or
I

two.

In the short instant that intervened,

felt

a

cartridge thrust into
servant,

my hand

by Spooner's plucky

Imam
all

Din,

who had
1

carried the

2 -bore

day and

who had
gallantly

stuck to

me

throughout
;

the

charge
it in, I

and
rushed
could

shoving
to

as quickly as

I

Bhoota's

rescue.

Meanwhile,

Spooner
:<

had got there before me and when I came

SPOONER'S PLUCKY SERVANT, IMAM
DIN."

up actually had
vain

his left

hand on the

lion's flank, in

a

attempt to push him off Bhoota's prostrate body and so get at the heavy rifle which the poor
fellow
still

stoutly clutched.

The lion, however, was
arm
that he paid
efforts.

so busily engaged mauling Bhoota's

not the slightest attention to Spooner's
fortunately, as
tion,
I

Un-

had
I

to

he was facing straight in my direcmove up in full view of him, and the
in

moment
the

reached his head, he stopped chewing

arm,

though

still

holding
his

it

his

mouth,

and threw himself back on

haunches, prepar-

278

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
the

CHAP.

ing for a spring, at
his
lips
I

same time curling back
a

and exposing

his long tusks in

savage

snarl.

knew then
I

that

I

had not a moment

to spare, so

threw the

rifle

up

to

and

trigger. Imagine and horror when it did not go off! " Misfire spair again," I thought, and my heart almost stopped As I took a step backwards, I felt it was beating.

pulled

the

my shoulder my utter de-

all

he would never give extract the cartridge and load again.
over now,
for

me
Still

time to
I

took

another step backwards, keeping my eyes fixed on the lion's, which were blazing with rage and in the
;

middle of

my

third

step, just as

the brute

was

gathering himself for his spring, it suddenly struck me that in my haste and excitement, I had forgotten
that
I

was using a borrowed

rifle

and had not pulled

back the hammer (my own was hammerless). To do this and put a bullet through the lion's brain

was then the work of a moment
instantly right

;

and he

fell

dead

on the top of Bhoota.

We

did not lose a

moment

in rolling his great

carcase off Bhoota's body and quickly forced open

the jaws

so

which

still

disengage the mangled arm, remained in his mouth. By this time
as
to

the poor shikari was in a fainting condition, and
flew to the tonga for the brandy flask which

we
a

we had

so providentially brought with us.

On making

rough examination of the wounded man, we found that his left arm and right leg were both frightfully

xxiv

BHOOTA'S LAST SHIK4R

279

mauled, the latter being broken as well.
lifted

He

was

tenderly into the tonga
to

how

thankful
at

we now
once set

were

have

it

with us

!

and Spooner
the doctor.

off with

him

to

camp and

Before following them home I made a hasty examination of the dead lion and found him to be a

very good specimen
satisfied

every way. I was particularly to see that one of the two shots I had fired
in

as

he charged down upon me had taken effect. The bullet had entered below the right eye, and
Unfortunately
it

only just missed the brain.
steel

was a

one which Spooner had unluckily brought in his ammunition bag by mistake still one would
;

have thought that a shot of this kind, even with a hard bullet, would at least have checked the lion for
the moment.
clean

As

a matter of

fact,

however,

it

went

through
effect.

him without

stopping
lead,

My

last

having the slightest bullet, which was of soft
*

right eye and embedded itself in the brain. By this time it had grown almost dark, so I left the two dead lions where they lay and rode for camp, which I was lucky

had

entered

close

to

the

enough
mishap.

to
I

reach

without

further

adventure
early

or

may mention
;

here

that

next

morning two other lions were found devouring the one we had first shot but they had not had time to
do much damage, and the head, which
I

have had

mounted, makes a very fine trophy indeed. lion that mauled Bhoota was untouched.

The

2 8o

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
arrival in

CHAP.

On my
that

camp

I

found that everything

was possible was being done for poor Bhoota by Dr. McCulloch, the same who had travelled up with
to

me
on

Tsavo and shot the
first

ostrich from the train

my

arrival

in

the country, and

who was

His wounds had been skilfully on the spot. dressed, the broken leg put in splints, and under the influence of a soothing draught the poor fellow was
luckily

soon sleeping peacefully. At first we had great hope of saving both life and limb, and certainly for

some days he seemed
as could be expected.

be getting on as well The wounds, however, were
to

very bad ones, especially those on the leg where the
long tusks had met through and through the flesh, the arm, leaving over a dozen deep tooth marks
;

It was though dreadfully mauled, soon healed. wonderful to notice how cheerfully the old shikari

bore

and a pleasure to listen to his tale of how he would have his revenge on the whole tribe
it

all,

of lions as soon as he was able to get about again.

But

alas, his

shikar was over.

The
in,

leg got rapidly
it

worse, and mortification setting

had

to

be

amputated half way up the thigh. Dr. Winston Waters performed the operation most skilfully, and

enough the operating table was canopied with the skin of the lion which had been responcuriously
sible for the injury.

Bhoota made a good recovery from the operation, but seemed to lose heart when he found that he had only one leg left, as according

The Author. ioner. July 19. The hunt which had proved in to be the last such a disastrous sequel occasion on which I met a lion got out of the hunting country shortly afterwards and for the rest of my stay in East Africa I had too much work to do to be the open. . as able to we go any distance in search of big game. and died on after a brother . Bhoota. We did all that was possible for him.] A COLLECTION OF TROPHIES. Imam Din.XXIV BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKAR 281 to his ideas he had now but a poor chance of being allowed to enter Heaven. and Spooner especially could not have looked to more tenderly but our great sorrow he sank gradually.

or the pointsman night. the Superintendent of the Police.CHAPTER XXV A MAN-EATER IN A RAILWAY CARRIAGE TOWARDS Africa. he actually climbed up on to the roof of the station buildings and tried to tear off the corrugated. master. and had devel- oped an extraordinary taste for the members of the He was a most daring brute. indifferent as to whether he carried off the station. ! thought then what a terrible fate was to overtake him only a few months later in that very carriage in which we dined. quite railway staff. in At this the terrified baboo charge of the telegraph instrument below sent the following laconic message . I the end of my stay in British East dined one evening with Mr. the signalman. in his efforts to obtain a and one meal.iron sheets. A little man-eating lion had taken up his quarters at a roadside station called Kimaa. in his inspection I Poor Ryall little carriage on the railway. Ryall.

he succeeded carrying off the native driver of the pumping-engine. in the top through which he Fortunately the tank was just too deep for the brute to be able to reach the man but the latter was naturally half at the bottom had squeezed . leaving large bloodstains on the in roof. Another night. poor Ryall met his tragic and untimely June 6. however. however. and soon afterwards added several other victims to his list. 1900. he was travelling up in his inspection the lion carriage from Makindu to Nairobi. accompanied by ." " was not victorious Fortunately he " fight with the station .CH. paralysed with fear and had to crouch so low down as to be unable to take anything like proper aim. Send urgent succour. and succeeded in frightening away for the time being. But as so often happens. but he tried so hard to get in that he cut his feet badly on the iron sheeting. overthrew tank and actually tried to drag the driver out through the narrow circular hole in. On one occasion an engine-driver arranged to iron water-tank in the sit up all night in a large at him. the hunter became the hunted middle of . It was in a vain attempt to destroy this pest that On end. hope of getting a shot and had a loop-hole cut in the side of the tank from which to fire. He fired. xxv the MAN-EATER IN RAILWAY CARRIAGE Traffic 283 to Manager in his " : Lion fighting with station. the lion turned the up in the the night.

Huebner occupied the high berth over the table on the one side of the carriage. CHAP. the three friends went to look for but finding no traces of him whatever. did not stand perfectly level. Parenti. so up their minds to remain there for the night and endeavour to shoot him. and there being apparently no sign of the lion. the only other berth being on the opposite side of the compartment and lower down.284 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO friends. but had to a pronounced one out side. Huebner and Mr. two Mr. Ryall's carriage was accordingly detached from they at the train once made and shunted into a siding close to the station. but only noticeable they what they took to be two very bright and steady glowworms. This Ryall . which about two hundred told that and fifty miles from Mombasa. In the afternoon the lion. where. Afterwards they the all sat up on guard thing for some time saw was . After events proved that these could have been nothing else than the eyes of the man-eater steadily watching them all the time and studying their every movement. they returned to the carriage for dinner. they were their train the man-eater had been seen close to the station only a short time before arrived. Ryall persuaded his two friends to down. it owing list to the unfinished state ot the line. is When they reached Kimaa. while he kept the first watch. The hour now growing lie late.

but him had actually to plant his feet on Parenti. it was an easy matter for the lion to thrust in a paw and shove it open. which ran very easily on a brass runner and as was probably not quite shut. than the cunning he had railway to mount two very high but these he steps from to the line. It is supposed that time. for he lay down on the lower No sooner had he done man-eater began In order to cautiously to stalk the three sleepers. in sprang at once at Ryall. wheels. the door slid to great extra weight and snapped into the lock the moment he got his body right in. would be quite comfortable on the accordingly lay the sliding and he down to sleep. 1285 offered to Parenti. Ryall. who saying that he floor . with his feet towards door which gave admission to the carriage. The door from platform into the carriage was a sliding one on . berth and dozed off.xxv MAN-EATER IN RAILWAY CARRIAGE declined it. doubtless. He order to reach it . reach the little platform at the end of the carriage. who. managed negotiate this successfully and in silence. or at any rate not secured in any way. after watching to for some considerable must have come the its conclusion that the lion was not going to make appearance that night. thus leaving him shut up with the three sleeping men in the compartment. it But owing to the tilt of the carriage and to his on the one side. so.

for the its great bulk It up all space beneath his berth. So he door in safety . it credible. managed to reach the but there. which was opposite to that by which the this lion had entered.286 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO be remembered. will At moment Huebner was suddenly awakened by a loud cry. efforts to last open to it. and victim to was too busily engaged with pay any attention to him. But in order to reach to the door Huebner had literally to jump on filled man-eater's back. CHAP. to fast his dismay. Small wonder that he was feet There was only one possible way of escape. who had been aroused by the disturbance caused by the lion's In utter desperation he made frantic entrance. was sleeping on the floor. he found that it was held on the other side by the terrified coolies. managed and exerting all his strength at pull it back sufficiently far to allow him to squeeze through. and that was through the panic-stricken at the sight. but appears that in horror of the moment he actually did fortunately the his lion sounds scarcely the excitement and this. A moment afterwards a great crash was heard. and on looking down from his berth was this horrified to see an enormous lion standing with his hind on Parenti's body. and the . while his forepaws rested on poor Ryall. it when the trembling coolies their instantly tied up again with turbans. second sliding door communicating with the servants' quarters.

287 whole carriage lurched violently to one side the lion had broken through one of the windows. AND THEN SHOT. and floor.xxv MAN-EATER IN RAILWAY CARRIAGE . his "HE WAS KEPT ON VIEW FOR SEVERAL DAYS. the wood-work of the window had been broken by the passage of the in his is to pieces lion as he sprang through with his victim All that can be hoped mouth. that poor Ryall's death . and fled to refuge one of the station buildings ." escape was little short of miraculous. Being now released. Parenti lost no time in jumping through the win- dow on for the opposite side of the carriage. as the lion had been actually standing on him as he lay on the The carriage itself was badly shattered. carrying off poor Ryall with him.

MI'AI. the terrible am this glad to be able to add that very shortly afterwards brute who was responsible for tragedy was caught in an constructed by one of the railway awful ingenious staff. and then shot.288 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. His remains were found next in the I morning about a quarter of a mile away bush. . l. xxv was instantaneous. trap He was kept on view for several days.A. and were taken to Nairobi for burial.

McCulloch. " were standing on the the time." said. ling I the lion which caused poor Bhoota's last I was the managed line at to shoot in East saw several others afterwards while different I travel- up and down the times on construction work. I when few days." " . facing each other. I do nothing else when am . it is because you don't look out for them." he retorted out hunting. engine at back to the north. accompanied by Dr. In particular.CHAPTER XXVI WORK AT NAIROBI ALTHOUGH death Africa. he with his " I We My dear Mac. remember one very curious incident which happened early on the morning of June was travelling towards The Nairobi." " I Rubbish. Doctor was going home on leave in the course of a 2. and was bemoaning to me his bad luck in never having shot or even seen a lion all the time he had been in the country.

reply. other quickly before he too made good This one was looking at us over his shoulder with one paw on the dead wildebeeste. and after the dead lion had been carried to the train and . Sultan. Just as he I was about one of them bolted." " driver." Just continued. evidently just killed.290 " THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Well. and while he stood bullet in this attitude Mac dropped him with a through the heart." He turned in could hardly believe fine lions only his when he saw two engaged in about two hundred yards off. the engine in a second and He to fire to was off made directly for the two beasts. so as to give him a greater surprise. busily devouring a wildebeeste which they had I had spotted them almost as soon as Mac had begun to talk of his bad luck." called to the "stop the engine. and had only waited to tell him until we got nearer. " in was the emphatic then. I Very good. a chance jump round off and bag those two over blank astonishment and eyes there. Mac. replied. "are you really very anxious to " shoot one before you go home ? " I would rather get a lion than anything else the world. so called out to him shoot the his escape. Needless to say he was tremendously delighted with his success. as " the here's train was quickly brought to a standstill." I Now." I CHAP. for you.

and I was division of the line. houses and work-shops built. Three days after this incident railhead reached Nairobi.RAI'H OF HIM STANDING RKSIDF: HIS KINK TROl'HY. given charge of the new Nairobi was to be the head- quarters of the Railway Administration. into a Roads and bridges had to busy railway centre. be constructed. so there " I TOOK A I'HOTOC.XXVI 291 propped up against a carriage. I took a photograph of him standing beside his fine trophy." was an immense amount of work to be done in converting an absolutely bare plain. turnu 2 . three hundred and twenty-seven miles from the nearest place where even a nail could be purchased.

and a a thriving "bazaar" sprang into existence with mushroom-like growth. and on my own responsibility promptly burned the whole place to the ground. we now were. as but all the same it effectually stamped the country. station quarters erected. a water supply on. however. For this somewhat arbitrary proceeding I I expected . In this. and a hundred to and one other of things done which go the making to a railway township. however. gardens) at the back of the hill on which my camp was pitched were being destroyed by elephants. however. work and very useful and capable they proved little themselves after a training. a or case long. They frequently brought me in word that the shambas (plantations. the news on to On my one occasion. but unfortunately I could never spare time to go out in quest of them. was mildly called over the coals. friend.292 tables laid THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO and CHAP. of the Wonderfully soon. two I of plague the broke out before very so inhabited it gave an hour's notice natives to and Indians who clear out. I passed Dr. out the plague. come and to in induce hundred Wa to whose at country Nairobi. which did not reappear during the time I was in With a several little persuasion of the I managed Kikuyu. the nucleus present town began take shape. Winston Waters. .

This sudden descent of his enemy he stepped on to the false apparently into the bowels of the earth so startled the elephant that he stopped short in his career and made off into the jungle. as the at the bottom nor very pit was neither staked deep . and. and. guided by a few of the Wa Kikuyu. the ele- phant giving vigorous chase and gaining rapidly. There was nothing for it. and determined let and left although barrel Waters well. The elephant responded by a prompt charge. as proved of no effect and on he came. it quickly him have the .xxvi WORK AT NAIROBI 3 with the result that he had a most exciting adventure with a big bull elephant. for the huge but at the critical on him . He set out in quest of the depredator. he was luckily none the worse for his fall. so down a path raced Waters for he was worth. following up . but to fly for all dear life . soon came upon him hidden among some Waters was a great believer in a shady trees. aiming for the heart. As for Waters. In a few seconds matters began to look very serious for the was almost sportsman. therefore. so he stalked up to within a few yards of the animal and then fired his "577. monster moment cover of a carefullyconcealed game pit and disappeared from view as if by magic. screaming and trumpeting with rage. he soon scrambled out. close shot.

A in I started called to cold. a body and begged pictured to them the be taken with wet climate of England 'SUCCEEDED IN FINISHING HIM OFF WITHOUT FURTHER TROUBLE. I Towards the end of 1899 few days before " I left for all England. children ". my Wa Kikuyu came me. succeeded in finishing CHAP. my " children and wherever I went. but they assured me that these were nothing to them. " as they only wished to continue to go. The ever- Mahina.294 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO wounded elephant. as they themselves. but it was persuaded them that they had better remain faiihful in their own country. I could hardly imagine of myself arriving four hundred in London with a body-guard less I more or only with difficulty that naked savages." and its great distance from their native land . the off" him without further trouble. my "boy" Roshan Khan. my .

and a few other coolies who had been to a long time with me. ON LAKE VICTORIA NYAN/A. AT KISl'MU. where they bade me a for sorrowful I farewell and left India the day before sailed on my homeward journey. STEAMER I'NI. accompanied me the coast. .OADINC.XXVI WORK AT NAIROBI 295 honest chankidar Meeanh.

Naturally I could not expect them. or . half wondering every moment if the ghosts of the two man-eaters would spring at me out of the bushes. . at midnight. CHAPTER XXVII THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND DURING the early part of last year (1906) I revisited the scene of my former labours and adven- tures on a shooting which I Unfortunately the train by travelled up from Mombasa reached Tsavo trip. however.THE GRAND FALLS. but my companions were anxious to push on as quickly as possible to better hunting-grounds. TANA RIVER. the strength and beauty of the Tsavo bridge but I fear this delicate as it little attention was scarcely appreciated them. I took the trouble. deserved. to wake them out of their peaceful slumbers in order to point out to by the pale moonlight. I wanted very much to spend a day or two in the old place. but all the same I got out and prowled about as long as time would permit.

insignificant structure We spent a few days at Nairobi. but the ordinary traveller of course knows nothing of this and doubtless thinks it only a very commonplace and indeed. "THE PLACE OF FALLING WATER" (ELDAMA RAVINE). 297 anyone of view I view the bridge quite from my point looked on it as a child of mine. brought stress up through and danger and troubles of all SHIMONE. kinds. now a flourish- . xxvii THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND else.CH. to .

We all got a fair amount of . and the climate way. including a well and after a short trip to Lake laid-out race course . we made our way back to the Eldama Ravine. cool and bracing. some 6. which to am glad to say proved be a most delightful and interesting one in every The country was lovely.000 inhabitants. supplied with every modern comfort and luxury. Victoria Nyanza and Uganda.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO ing town of CHAP. which Here we lies some twenty bioO miles north of Landiani Station in the province of Naivasha. started in earnest on our I cyame expedition.

ostrich. waterbuck. straight. . was lucky enough to shoot a specimen of an entirely new race of eland. our including rhino.xxvn THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND bag- 299 sport. I but for the present must confine myself to a short account of how I ROAN ANTELOPE. etc. Our on party of including one lady left who rode and shot equally January 22. hippo. im- reedbuck. the off Kldama Ravine in and trekked an easterly direction across the Laikipia Plateau. As the trail which we were to take was very little known and . wildebeeste. hartebeeste. five. roan antelope. pala. oryx.

. an excellent. very a procured us a reliable man young "AN EXCELLENT. District CHAP. the kindly Officer at the Ravine. ." Uashin Gishu Masai named Uliagurma. CHEERY FELLOW. Foaker. NAMED LANDAALU.300 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO impossible to follow without a guide. almost Mr. we had also to engage an the interpreter. and he in his turn . cheery fellow of same tribe named Landaalu . But as he could not speak a word of Swahili.

Our route although he was no earthly use to us. I noticed that Uliagurma. so I told him to come lo me when we proved got to camp and I would see what I could do for him. from earache. On our first CROSSING A STREAM ON THE COOK'S BOX. over the Multilo and Subu unexpected Ko Lultian ranges. though uncomplainingly. and grateful that he spread my Uliagurma was so fame as a " medicine- . and across many rivers and streamlets.xxvn THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND who insisted 301 possessed a kinsman on coming too. Strange to say. my doctoring most successful. march (guide). took us through the Solai Swamp. our kirongozi was suffering extremely.

man far trekked. and visited our camp in swarms an hour or so after our arrival. call and the my my gun-bearer Juma. was a perfect belt afternoon. to the north of the kraal so I set out at once with Landaalu It I and Juma to try my luck. Riding my pony ance in their and accompanied by Landaalu as interpreter. . After we had climbed the Subu Ko Lultian and got a footing on the plateau. I used to do what I could. women in and children every state of disease and crippledom came and besieged our camps. begging for some of the magical dawa (medicine). of them and only hope I did not injure many but it was heartrending to see some of the I quite hopeless cases was expected the to cure. we pitched our river. and wide among the natives wherever we The consequence was that men.302 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO " CHAP. when the cliuorani (warriors) gave for entertainment an exhibition of the gymnastic exercises which they practise regularly in order more render particularly them if strengthen their legs and After the performance I supple. on the banks of Angarua where camp we found a big Masai kraal. friendly. the inhabitants of which seemed much astonished at our sudden appear- They were very neighbourhood. I returned their in afternoon. however. to asked that there was any game about and was told some might be found a few miles . and no sooner had cleared the .

and noticed as went that a couple CROSSING THE ANGAKUA RIVER. My succeeded continued admirably. and care- I disnoting the direction they were taking. fully I marked these for my own. mounted and made a detour round a rise so as to lie in wait for them and cut them for off. to the two fine plan animals come straight towards me without . I game away on the the feeding peacefully steadily rolling prairie. of eland were gradually drawing away from the rest of the herd. aid of the my glasses in I saw a herd of zebra and other distance. made my way I towards them.xxvii THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND when by 303 of scrub which grew round the kraal.

3 o4

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
by the way.
I

CHAP.

suspicion, feeding quietly

When

they

got to within eighty

yards or so,

picked out the

bigger head and was only waiting for him to make a slight turn before pulling the trigger, when bang

went the heavy

rifle

half a mile away.

companions about In an instant the two eland had
of one of

my

bounded

off,

and

I

decided not to risk a shot,
settle

in

the

hope that they would soon
give

down again and
firing

me

another chance.

Mentally blessing

my

friend

for

at

this

untimely moment, I watched them belt of wood about a mile further
against hope
side that they

make
on,

for

a

hoping would remain on the near
luck,

of

it.

No
it

such

however,

for

they

plunged
out of

into

my

and were quickly swallowed up sight. Running to my pony, which
I

Landaalu had dexterously brought up,
in

galloped

the

direction

of the

spot
;

in

the

trees

where
vexa-

the eland had disappeared
tion

but imagine

my

up sharp on the edge of a nasty-looking swamp, which at first sight appeared too boggy and treacherous to
I

when

I

found that

had

to pull

attempt to cross.

I

rode up and

down

it

without

being able to find anything like a really safe crossing
place, so in desperation
I

at last

determined to take

along an old rhino path where the reeds were flattened down. My pony floundered
the risk of crossing
it

bravely through, and eventually succeeded

in get-

xxvii

THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND
I

305

ting safely to the other side.

then

made my way
was relieved
I

cautiously through the belt of trees, and
to find that
it

was only half a mile or so broad.

RKEDBUCK.

dismounted as

I

neared the further side, and, tying

my pony

to a tree, crept quietly forward, expecting
;

to see the eland not far off

but to

my

disappoint-

ment there was no

trace of

game

of any kind on the

x

306

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO

CHAP.

whole wide stretch of country that met my view. I therefore tried another direction, and, taking a half
turn
to

my

left,

made my way
to the top of

carefully through

some open glades
far off.

a

little

rise

not

The

sight that
;

now met my eyes

fairly

took

my

breath away

for there, not three

and stalking placidly along at herd of fully a hundred eland of

hundred yards off a slow walk, was a
all

ages and

sizes.

The

column was brought up by a magnificent old bull, and my heart jumped for joy as I watched him from the shelter of the bushes behind
rear of the

which

I

lay concealed.

The

next thing to be done

was

to decide

on a plan of

attack,

and

this

had

to

be

thought of without loss of time, for the wind was blowing from me almost in the direction of the
eland,
I

who would
not

certainly scent

me

very soon

if

did
in

tion
all

Quickly noting the direcwhich they were moving, I saw that if
get

away.

went well they ought

to pass close

to a little

hillock about a mile or so off;

and

if

I

were very

thought I could make a circuit through the wood and be on this rise, in a good position for both wind and cover, before the
sharp about
it,

I

herd could

reach

it.

Accordingly

I

crept

away

with the object of finding

my

mount, but to

my

stood delight just behind me and well hidden the undefeated Landaalu, who in some mysterious

xxvir

THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND
followed
it

307

way had
had
left

me
a

up, found the

tied

to

tree,

pony where I and brought it on to me.

bright grin on his face he thrust the reins into my hand, and I was up and galloping off in an
instant.
I

With a

soon discovered that
I

I

had further
to

to

go than

big detour order to keep out of sight of the herd but on once or twice and peeping through the trees halting
I

expected, for

was forced

make a

in

;

I

saw that

still

last

was going well and that they were The calmly moving on in the right direction. of a mile had to be negotiated in quarter
all
I

found that by lying flat down on my pony's back I was completely hidden from the advancing herd by an intervening swell in the
the open, but

In this manner I managed to get unground. observed to the lee of my hillock, where I dis-

mounted, threw the reins over a stump, and crawled
stealthily but

could to the top. I was in great doubt as to whether I should be in
I

as quickly as

time or not, but on peering, hatless, over the crest, I was overjoyed to find the whole herd just below

me.

One
at once,
It

of the eland, not twenty yards

off,

saw

me

and stood

still

to gaze at
I

me

in astonish-

ment.

was a female, however, so
looked round
near.
to

took no notice

of her, but

see

if

my

great bull
;

were anywhere

Yes, there he was
I

he had

passed the spot where

lay,

but was not more than

x

2

3 o8

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
off,

CHAP.

forty yards

as

when

I

moving in the same leisurely fashion An instant later, he first saw him.

noticed the general alarm caused by

my

appearance,

and stopped and turned half round to see what was This gave me my opportunity, so I the matter.
fired,

The way in aiming behind the shoulder. which he jumped and kicked on feeling the lead told

me

got two more bullets into him from the magazine of my '303 before he managed to gain the shelter of a neighbouring In the meantime the thicket and was lost to sight.
I

had

hit

him hard, and

I

whole herd had thundered
pearing
I

off at

full

gallop,

disap-

in

a few minutes in a cloud of dust.
little difficulty

was confident that there would be
finding

in

the

wounded

eland,

and on Landaalu

coming up
to

which, by the way, he did almost im-

mediately, for he was a wonderful goer

we

started

make

a rough search through the thicket.

Owing

to the

growing darkness, however, we met with no success, so I decided to return to camp, which was

many

miles

away, and to

resume the

quest

at

daybreak the following morning. It turned out that we were even further from home than I thought,

and black night came upon us before we had covered
a quarter of the distance.

Fortunately the invalu-

able Landaalu had discovered a

good crossing over the swamp, so we were able to press on at a
good pace without losing any time
in

overcoming

xxvn

THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND

309

the obstacle.

we
by

After an hour or so of hard travelling, were delighted to see a rocket go up, fired
friends
to

my
is

guide us on our way.

Such a
far

sight

wonderfully cheering

when one

is

away

from camp, trudging along in the inky darkness and none too certain of one's direction and a rocket
;

equipment should
before
to

invariably

be

carried

by the

traveller in the wilds.

we

Several more were sent up got anywhere near camp, and I remarked

Landaalu that we must have gone a very long " way after the eland. Long way," he replied
;

"

why, Master, we have been

to

"

Baringo

!

This
away.

lake as a matter of fact

was
I

fully fifty miles fired

When

finally

we

arrived

the ardour of

my
had

companions by relating the adventures of the noon and telling them of the wonderful herd
seen
;

afterI

and

it

was

at

once agreed that we should stay

where we were

for a

day or two

in

the hope of

good sport being obtained. As soon as it was daylight the next morning
sent out a party of our porters with
full

I

instructions

where

to find

my

eland,

which

I

was sure must

be lying somewhere in the thicket close to the hill from where I had shot him and very shortly afterwards we ourselves made a start. After a couple of
;

hours' travelling
sight

we were
of the
stalked

lucky enough

to

catch

of a

portion

herd of

eland,

when

we dismounted and

them

carefully through

3 io

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO
All of a sudden one
fifty

CHAP.

the long grass.

popped up

its

head unexpectedly about

yards away.

One
at

of
it,

companions immediately levelled his rifle but from where I was I could see better

my

than

he that the head was a poor one, and so called
out
late,

to

him not

to
at

fire.

however, for
It

that

The warning came moment he pulled
too,

too

the

trigger.

was rather a

difficult shot,

as the

body of the animal could not be seen very well owing to the height of the grass as the head still,
;

instantly disappeared

we hoped

for the best

and ran

up

to the place, but

no trace of the eland could be

found.
little

Accordingly we pushed on again and after a rested for a short time under the shade of some

trees.

We

had

gone
for

about

three

miles

after

game, when one of the porters remembered that he had left the water-bottle he was carrying at the trees where we had halted, so resuming our search
he was sent back
for
it

with

strict injunctions to

make

haste and to rejoin us as quickly as possible.
trifling incident

Curiously enough, this
providential
;

proved quite

for

the

porter

(whose

name was

recovering the water-bottle, found himself unable to trace us through the jungle and
Sabaki),
after

accordingly

On his way camp. back he actually stumbled over the dead body of the eland which I had shot the previous day and which
struck

home

for

the search party

I

had sent out

in the

morning had

xxvn THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND They were still 311 failed to find. discovered a bees' nest a fallen tree and proceeded to try to extract the honey. and then carried it to the camp. he only had a jacket like mine he would I gave him my jacket at once. Meanwhile. and while we were eating our guides. it When was . so Sabaki hailed them and they once set to work to skin and cut up the animal. and chaffed him unmercifully for allowing himself. about dusk. who was in a great . laughed heartily at Landaalu. This interference was naturally strongly resented by the bees. We were met by Sabaki. looking for it close at hand. of which the Masai are very fond. and soon the semi-naked youths ran flying past us with the I angry swarm in full pursuit. a Masai. homewards. and a most comical figure he cut in it. as it was very short and he had practically nothing else on. This the jolly fellow saying that if soon go and get the honey. however. took very good-humouredly. the nest was properly examined. at however. of course. and continued our hunt for game. to be put to flight by a few bees. found that the so after taking at bees had eaten all the honey guides some photographs of our the work among bees we all pro- ceeded reaching camp with nothing to show for our long day's hunt. Uliagurma and in Landaalu. we knew nothing of all this. Shortly after noon we had it a light lunch.

On viewing the head. I told my friend that Sabaki had found the eland in which he had shot heartily with the morning. when I came found of examine the head and skin they both differed I carefully. granted that I knew it was mine.3 i2 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO of excitement. that materially from those any other eland that had ever seen. that the mystery was exall plained. For one . CH. xxvn state in and who started to explain very bad Swahili how he had come across the dead eland. How know to till great this good fortune was . He not greeted me by saying that after gone to Baringo for nothing the previous day. and on my asking him what he meant he told me about the finding of the eland. did I not long after but even then. in the at evening when the I visited Landaalu. and rejoiced him at this piece of good luck. we could not understand it. as it was very much bigger than the and it was not till later one he had fired at . I quickly called up Sabaki and after some trouble got from him the whole story of how he had found taking it we had for the body close to my little hillock it. however. and near where my men ledged were searching to for So at I broke the truth gently my friend. who once acknow- my claim and congratulated me on my I good fortune. Misunderstanding what he said. curled up camp fire.

[From a photograph by Rowland Ward. oryx pattencniaiuis.THE NEW El.AND T.] .

. as showing the existence of a hitherto unknown race eland.3 i4 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO there CHAP. white stripe in though eland. smaller those the found forehead the giant The sides of were of a reddish colour. Mr. the chief markings being return to to three lines across the withers. on account of certain peculiarities in colouring and markings." . who wrote to tell me of that it possessed great zoological interest.S. Patterson in Portuguese East Africa. and set up by Mr. F. the Rowland it be set and there was seen by Mr. which indicate a transition from the ordinary South African animal in the direction of eland. the body The striping on was very in to slight.R. Lydekker also contributed the following notice describing the animal to The Field of September 29. I sent up. thing. 1906 " : Considerable interest attaches to the head of an 1 by Colonel J. eye ran an incomplete than. killed the giant eland 1 (Taurotragus derbianns) of In error for the " British. was no from long tuft the of hair on the forehead. Lydekker. of the British Museum. R. in the well-known naturalist and specialist big game. and on the lower part of the face there was a much larger brown patch than is to be seen on the ordinary eland. while lower corner of each similar to. H. On my head while England Ward's April. Rowland Ward.

in the Sudani form of the giant eland (T. although rather smaller than. characteristic If all the elands from that part of of the latter. and no white stripe from the lower angle of the eye. the On the lower sides of the forehead being rufous. the one found in the giant eland. although the two stripes do not meet in the middle line. apparently although bordered band on the side of the neck. or even blackish-brown. above and between the eyes. although there is a is rufous the fawn-coloured patch on each side above In both the latter respects Colonel nostril. On the other hand. lacks dark white- Portuguese East Africa where Colonel Patterson's . with a tuft of long bushy hair on the forehead. the whole middle line of the face of the adult bull is uniformly dark. "In Colonel Patterson's eland (which may well be designated T.xxvn THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND district 315 Bahr-el-Ghazal and West Africa. derbianus gigas]. of the face there is a larger dark-brown area part than in the ordinary eland. Patterson's it specimen recalls the the giant eland. In the striped variety {Taurotragus oryx livingstonianus] of the ordinary South African eland. Rothschild in Novitates Zoologicae for 1905. oryx pattersoniamis) there is an incomplete white chevron similar to. as represented by a bull figured by Mr. while 'only a narrow stripe in the middle line of the face. the upper part of the face has the hair rufous and shorter than in the ordinary eland. recalling the white chevron of the kuclu. dark-brown. while from the lower angle of each eye a white stripe runs inwards and downwards.

all I gladly presented to the Trustees.316 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. and as the authorities of Museum expressed a desire to possess it head. even if the present true specimen be only a likely). so sportsmen and naturalists might have an opportunity of seeing it at the Natural History Museum at South Kensington. there will be a strong presumption that the and the giant eland. where it now is. . While. like the various local forms of giraffe and bonte-quagga. are only races of one and the same species. xxvn specimen was obtained turn out to be of the same type. that THOMSON'S GAZELLE. it will (which I consider unserve to show that the southern and sport ' ' northern elands are more nearly related than has hitherto been supposed." As my eland the British its thus proved to be of some con- siderable scientific value.

APPENDIX .

.

a '303 sporting rifle. SPORTSMEN who think of visiting British East Africa on a shooting trip may be glad of a few general hints on points of interest and importance. and . say. and 200 soft). to be sufficient for all needs. NKAR THE RIl'ON KAI. couple of hundred rockets of various colours should certainly be taken. as they are invaluable for signalling to A and from camp after dark. the 6 and 8 sizes. These can be obtained so as to fire from a 12-bore shot gun or from a short pistol. APPENDIX i. and a 12-bore shot gun and I should consider 250 rounds of '450 (50 hard . each of these different cartridges would also prove carry 50 very useful.LS.WAR CANOE ON LAKE VICTORIA NYANZA. The battery. should consist of a '450 express. 300 rounds of '303 (100 hard and 200 soft). Leather bandoliers to sufficient for a three months' trip. and 500 12-bore shot cartridges of.

soles . wash-leather gloves to protect the hands from the sun. The rifles. cartridges. charges a be preserved and produced for inspection. a couple of suits of khaki. leather gaiters or a couple of pairs of puttees. PREPARING BREAKFAST IN CAMP. and two pairs of boots with long Norwegian boots will also be found very hemp useful. The hunter's kit should include a good pith sun-hat. and sent off from London in tinlined cases at least a month before the sportsman himself It must be remembered that the Customs intends to start.320 APPENDIX some should always be left with the camp neopara (Headman) for use as occasion requires. The . and rockets should be consigned to an agent in Mombasa. duty on the so that the invoices should imported. House at Mombasa value of all articles 10 per cent.

most A well-filled medicine chest should of course not be forgotten. and I should recommend others to do the same. warm overcoat will be much appreciated up-country good in the cool of the evenings. W. and will gladly give advice to and as these are the all as to light and time of exposure . am much indebted am sure should not in the country in 1898-99. all that need be taken out from England are a small double-fly tent. For use in rocky or thorny country. a hunting and skinning knife or two. As . A good field glass. With regard to the last item. D. The latter is a useful article of kit. as films indeed I had deteriorate rapidly on the voyage home nearly four hundred spoiled in this way. I made it a practice on my last visit to the country to send him the exposed films for development whenever I reached a postal station. Young on arriving at Nairobi. regards camp equipment. two points which require most attention.APPENDIX underclothing worn in England is all that is if the shooting is to be done in the highlands. who enthusiastic photographer. I myself and to Mr. filter boxes (food) and other necessary camp gear should be Chop . Young's kindly advice. and a good and even these can be obtained just as good locally. three Jaeger blankets. a collapsible bath. a pair of knee and elbow pads will be found invaluable. and a light mackintosh for wet usual required A weather ought also to be included. and a Kodak with about 200 films should also be carried. for although the air may be pretty cool. and those who feel the sun should also provide themselves with a spine-protector. have achieved much success in my pictures without it. taken when I was I I . I should strongly advise all intend to take photographs on their trip to pay a visit He is an to Mr. a Wolseley valise. hints from some one of experience in the country are most useful. the sun strikes down very fiercely towards midday.

where the agents will put up just what is necessary personally. provide before a start 1 The rupee sterling. though the exact numbers usually he intends going depend upon many considerations i i : Headman Cook Gun-bearer " 50 rupees 35 l per month.. men The sportsman is obliged to is made. thus saving 20 rupees per head in Unless money is to return railway fares. 20 12 2 Asian's (armed porters). About a month before sailing from England a letter . each porter with a jersey. should be sent to the agents. will be required. blanket and water-bottle.. The sportsman will then find everything ready for him. I should not advise anyone at Mombasa. and then reloaded on the animal's back. etc. so that an immediate start may be made. Newland and Tarleton of the latter place very reliable. as It must be remembered that for transport work men are infinitely preferable to donkeys. i 1 20 Boy " (personal servant). stating the date of arrival and what porters... in British East Africa is on the basis of 15 to the i . 30 Porters 10 each. I found Messrs. where every load has to be unpacked. no object. porters are all registered.322 obtained at APPENDIX Mombasa or Nairobi. carried over. if The caravan far for one from the railway is sportsman made up as follows. the latter are exasperatingly slow and troublesome. as equally good men can engage porters be obtained at Nairobi. the Government taking a and according to custom small fee for the registration half the wages due for the whole trip are advanced to the The . especially on rough ground or on crossing streams. each.

they certainly rate themselves very highly. In camp. Mombasa. to secure a splendid neopara. one kibaba. It is the duty of the Headman to keep discipline on the safari (caravan journey). etc. of which the Headman gets two kibabas (a kibaba is about \\ Ib. and to see to the distribution and safety of the loads. the duties of the askaris are to keep up the fire and watch at night. but am told that they are inclined to be As troublesome . and on him depends greatly the general comfort For our trip at the beginning of 1906. cotton shelter-tent and a cooking pot must A also be furnished for every five men. and could easily be found by this name at . and the ordinary porters. but he told me when he left us that he was going to learn. boy and askaris one and a half kibabas.) per day the cook. gun-bearer. the pitching and striking of camp. most hunters prefer a Somali. but he was always known as M'zay. It is wonderful what an experienced native uipeshi (cook) can turn out in the way of a meal in a few minutes after camp is pitched. I have gun-bearer. Anybody I cannot securing him as Headman will be lucky remember his real name. never tried one. His only of the sportsman.APPENDIX " 323 while the gun-bearer and " boy get a pair of boots in addition. each . the issue of posho (food) to the porters. The food for the caravan is mostly rice. and a good one should be procured if possible. and never had the least trouble with the porters all the time. both in camp and on the march. " " per day. He always brings up the rear of the caravan. The cook is also an important member of the caravan. and to pitch and strike the Bwanas Y 2 . and demand about four times as much wages as an equally good Swahili. we managed drawback was that he could not speak English.

they sulky mutineers.APPENDIX On the march one leads the caravan. see that no desertions take . They are each armed with an old snider rifle and 10 rounds of ball cartridge. loads and day out without complaint. rally it very dangerous men to their friends when they take day in into their heads to fire their weapons. place. and generally do what they can to protect the caravan. the Swahili porter is . and build grass huts if a stay of more than a day is intended to be made at one place. procure firewood and water. . pitch and strike camp. and they at once become fed In addition to carrying the loads. other brings up the rear they give assistance in the event of any trouble with the loads. On the whole. the (Master's) tent. so long as they are well but stint them of their rice. and are gene- VIEW IN THE KENYA PROVINCE. The ordinary porters will carry their 6o-lb. allow no straggling.

the best plan accommodation. ." is to hire one of the special carriages from the Traffic Manager of the Uganda Railway. It may be that our sportsman intends to confine his shooting trip to the neighbourhood of the railway in this . and moved from station to station or left standing in a siding This is the cheapest and at the directions of the hunter.APPENDIX 325 one of the jolliest and most willing fellows in the world. which have good sleeping. "A FLYING VISIT IN A RICKSHAW TO KAMPALA. can be attached to almost any train. cooking. and I have nothing but praise for him. These carriages. and bath case.

O\V1. such. say. or regular porters are some quite good sport can be obtained into Again. if the hunter intends shooting. COTTON GARMENTS. required and the bargain. and sportsman . jersey.' Province. the camp equipment.326 APPENDIX in most comfortable way of spending a short time country. as no tent. while he provides his own food neither is the asked to furnish him with a blanket. in the Kenya " Cl.N<. Kikuyu porter in circumstances is a day. as many in from the official porters as he requires charge at Fort Hall. may be obtained The pay of the only t\vo annas . .AD IN LONG KI.

take about seventeen Maritimes. single fare (First-Class) less is 42 IDS. The British East The Africa Line sails from London about once a month. There are various lines of steamers sailing to Mombasa- The steamers of the German East Ost-Afrika Linie) sail Africa Line {Deutsche from Marseilles or Naples. which can easily be ascertained on arrival in the country. The JIXJA. the ordinary fare. being only 20 First-Class . days. in fact.APPENDIX 327 water-bottle so long as he is not taken out of his own Province. but the fare is much for two years. governed as regards porters by its own special conditions. while those who are . takes longer by this route. The voyage takes about eighteen days from Marseilles. The return is double The Messageries 10 per cent. sailing The First-Class fare from London is 45 return. Each Province is. is cheaper. . available voyage 67 los. from Marseilles.

Mombasa and Fairly good hotel accommodation can be had at both Nairobi. This license imposes an obligation on the sportsman to make a return before he leaves the country of every animal shot by him. By obtaining a special Game License. which may be obtained without difficulty at either of these two centres. Before any shooting can be done it is necessary to take " RUSHING OVER THE RIPON FALLS. .328 APPENDIX not pressed for time would probably enjoy calling in at the various ports en route." out a Game License (costing the sum of .50).

. while the Game Laws and Regulations can be procured from the Colonial Office in Downing Street. maps of the country may be obtained at Long Acre.. in 329 be killed license. Fairly good Stanford's. of course. This fee of . and one bull giraffe may addition to the animals covered by the ordinary fee of 5 is charged for each of these bulls . and is forfeited whether the animals are afterwards killed or not." all is.15 in this must be paid in "THE MIGHTY RIVER STRETCHING AWAY TO THE NORTH AMID ENCHANTING SCENERY.C. W. advance.APPENDIX one bull buffalo. A one bull eland. additional to the $O for the ordinary license.

the official capital of Uganda. the sportsman cannot do better. for years past. and there cannot be lack of sport and trophies for the keen sliikari. The heads and skins should be very carefully a matter of fact. on Mondays. Passenger trains leave It is unnecessary to specify district by district where particular species of game are to be found. Kisumu and Entebbe are 92. can be done in seventeen hours. including I consider that passage both ways. and 213! rupees respectively. As the whole country abounds in game. The frugal sportsman it on less. and Fridays.330 APPENDIX Mombasa at 1 1 a. traveller to long enough in Entebbe harbour to enable the energetic pay a flying visit in a rickshaw to Kampala. a trip to the Victoria Nyanza should certainly be made. some twenty-one miles off. for the sportsman can easily learn this for himself and get the latest news of game movements on his arrival at Mombasa. as at night the boats anchor for The steamer remains shelter under the lee of an island. The First-Class return fares from Mombasa to Nairobi. Nairobi at 11. sun-dried and packed in tin-lined cases with plenty of moth-killer for shipment home. Ward firm of Piccadilly. 400 should cover the entire cost of a three months' shooting trip to East Africa. For mounting his trophies I think. and are timed to arrive at Wednesdays. though it usually takes twenty-seven. than go to Rowland I have had mine set up by this and have always found their work excellent. but the crossing to Entebbe. I spent a most . The voyage round the Lake in one of the comfortable railway steamers takes about eight days.m. 164]. will will doubtless do probably Should time be available. while the extravagant man spend very much more. the native capital.15 next morning and at Kisumu (the railway terminus on Lake Victoria Nyanza) at 9 o'clock on the morning following.

as if he had remained in England. Unfortunately the great scourge of the district round the in the " bazaar " Lake is the sleeping sickness. and has quite depopulated the islands. He was then about nine years old. so that if the traveller avoids these he is quite as safe. and one can well imagine how elated Speke must have felt when. which were once densely shores of the inhabited. The disease is communicated by the is bite of an but happily this pest only found in certain well-defined regions. forms the long-sought-for source of the Nile. as it is here that the Lake narrows into a breadth of only a few hundred yards. as regards sleeping sickness. and had a chat with the boy King of Uganda. and busily engaged in bartering the products of the country under the shade of tattered umbrellas. people of Uganda) the majority are Christians surrounded as they are on all sides by nations of practically naked savages and it is a very interesting sight to watch them highly civilised . Daudi Chwa. at Kampala. which in the past few years has carried off thousands of the natives.. clad in long flowing cotton garments. It is He made no it curious to find the Baganda (i. and.e. This place is of great interest. is usually called at. infected fly.APPENDIX interesting 331 day last year in this way. but unfortunately turned out a failure. river stretching is The magnificent view to the north away of the mighty amid enchanting scenery most inspiring. a port on the north side of the Victoria Nyanza. and very bright and intelligentobjection to my taking his photograph. rushing over the Ripon Falls. at Mengo. Jinja. he at last looked upon it and thus solved one of the great problems of the ancients. after enduring countless hardships. . On the return journey from Entebbe.

all animals . though without body or breath. . elephants. who infinite and incomprehensible. ferocious monkeys that attack men. came it to this country of Africa. yet does he speak in mighty tones. size. that a hunter or sportsman could desire. THE COMPASSIONATE : is must I speak to the praise and glory of God. and did find indeed a strange land Many lions rocks. spirits.II The poem IN following is a literal translation of the Hindustani referred to on p. and thousands of and Wild horses. THE MERCIFUL. being himself incomparable and passionless. and although without a tongue. black varieties of baboons of giant birds . . who is the Life. black snakes. and dense deer. Roshan. camels. First Who is without fault or error. mountains. 103: THE NAME OF ALLAH. nor father nor son. enemies of man . rhinoceroses. He has no relatives. and Gorillas. all Also wolves. I. wild dogs. His is the knowledge of the known and of the unknown. forests abounding in and leopards buffaloes.

Because of the fear of these demons some seven or eight hundred of the labourers deserted. kept some ten or twenty goats. the forests bordering on this " line. I. would sit in their huts. Such was their habit. Everyone of them kept afire burning at night. and the people complaining of the deeds of the lions. Portions of this railway from Mombasa to Uganda are still being made. and to our relate spiritual adviser. chief of will line. flesh. and none dared to close his eyes in sleep yet would some of them . Now from the town of Mombasa. there are found those lions called are full man-eaters. the Prophet. a railway line extends unto Uganda In ." and moreover these forests of thorns and prickly shrubs. their hearts full of foreboding and terror. I my people. And now charge of the the story of the Engineer He milk . also complained and in prayed to God. and left not a trace behind them. day and night. but they were haunted by this terrible dread. and remained idle Some two or three hundred still remained. be carried away to destruction. . weeping and wailing. for the sake of their . they devoured all. and hundreds of men fell victims to these savage creatures. The lion's roar was such that the very earth would tremble at the sound. Bones. skin and blood. whose very jaws were steeped in blood. and here these lions fell on the workmen and destroyed them. and where was the man who did not feel afraid ? On would all sides arose sit and cry like cranes.APPENDIX The forests are 333 so dark and dreadful that even the boldest warriors shrink from their awful depths. And because of fear for their lives. Roshan.

and doing great all. young. who also stated that the man-eater was daily destroying the labourers and workmen. Zal. fallen victims to Those who were proud or their lives uselessly . the fearless lion made his appearance . For such has been the habit of lions from time immemorial.334 APPENDIX But one night a wild beast came. boastful. the English- man " spoke. So brave at his action is . And they took the Engineer with them and showed him the footprints of the animal. From of those the other side of the line came the noise and cries who complained that these savage beasts were eating and destroying men. and groups of people have their fury. Patterson Sahib loaded both barrels of his gun and went forth against him. And when took his gun and in very Patterson Sahib is indeed a brave and valiant man. . this For damage the lion shall pay his life. that the greatest warriors stood aghast Tall in stature. And after seeing what the animal had done. Soon after the people had retired at night to their tents." night came he truth destroyed the beast. like unto those Persian heroes of old Rustem. most brave and of great strength is he. and said. And in the morning it was reported by the watchman. injury . and the valiant one has gone forth with his gun into the forest. Sohrab and Berzoor . have but sacrificed But to-day himself! Patterson Sahib will watch for the lion For the people have complained loudly. he. and destroyed them not one being left.

hard after making him . Do not think of work to-day and be merry. this man-eater rendered helpless . in Now the people. Lions do not fears He fled. the very essence of valour . and your spiritual ! adviser. Patterson. lions. comparable to the and the Prophet judgment. enjoy So the people had holiday and made merry with friends from whom they had been long parted. for the forest. and is indeed yet one glance from Patterson Sahib cowed the bravest of them. to sinners God and criminals on the day of it is Oh thee . too deep for We Oh ! mortals have the Devil. bearing lights look at their dead enemy. and their money allowed them A generous action. the Prophet. safeguard you day and night . do not rush into danger. This Englishman." And in the morning all the people saw the lion lying . lion roared like thunder as the bullets found their is way to his heart. like unto a fierce . lion. may God. all ran to But the Sahib said " Return. dead. he lay down And beast after fell he had covered a chain's distance." holiday. their hands. " make lion : And the absence of those who had run away was forgiveness of forgiven. on account of the And then the Sahib said. ever after us Roshan. the savage down. ! poet. my children the night is dark.APPENDIX He The fired 335 many times in succession and totally paralysed the animal. leave this kind of simile. most brave. a corpse. while the bullets followed So was in despair.

bullets . And Patterson Sahib went forth into the field meet him. he fired quickly. lying wounded when the Sahib saw the animal he And incessantly ." he Now festival : this was the night of SIiab-i-Kadr. on the seventeenth day. and everyone enjoyed mind . One in however. All thought of sleep was banished. or roam about. " Do not go out from said. bullet after a great uproar. seven chains away. the lion came to in a rage. remained. And in the morning we followed the marks of blood that had flowed from the And And some five or wounded animal. of the lion was heard. But again. and all for fear of him all went dread Sixteen days passed. He kept on roaming about in the neighbourhood like a general reconnoitring the enemy's position. but the bullets nevertheless found a resting-place in his heart. On the following day the Sahib sent for the people and warned them all to be careful of their lives . a peaceful being well. and in great pain. and fear came in its place : And the Sahib gave emphatic orders that no one should go out. a had Muslim And at night \vhen all retired to rest.336 APPENDIX lion. and fled for his life. . the lion appeared and remained from sunset to sunrise. lion The made everyone began to shriek and groan in their uneasy jumping up in fear. when unexpectedly the roaring sleep. And when bullet. the afternoon even until the following morning. we found the fired lion. he saw the beast.

" You are our benefactor " saying. as to be acceptable to Patterson Sahib In colour it should resemble moon and sun and that would indeed be a fit present. But the Sahib declined to accept the present. pleased to accept it. Which should bear an engraving of the two lions. and the Sahibs were afraid But for the sake of our lives. in order to protect Previously. The present should be such. so much so that he roamed about us. killing Came by the beast. to order that was agreed to send all the money to England. 1 Foreman-mason. and consulted as how the service that the Sahib had done them could most suitably be rewarded. not taking a pice of it. so that the Sahib would be it . Patterson Sahib took . many Englishmen had come here to shoot but had been disappointed. the savage animal. . in it might be converted into some suitable present. all this So they it trouble. such order to save our all the people appeared before the Sahib Roshan. burning with rage and pain. Z . as a present to peril. risking his collected many own life in the forest. and offered the Sahib. . because he had undergone lives. Because the lion was very courageous and ferocious. leaps and bounds close to the Sahib But here he was to meet his match in a brave Sahib who loaded his gun calmly. and so suitably decorated. in the forests for our sake. Oh So then again the Punjaubis assembled.APPENDIX But when the lion 337 saw the Sahib. And . in ! hundreds of rupees. the Sahib was a All the Punjaubis assembled together and agreed that man who appreciated and cared for others. and fired again and again. and the name of the mistari^ head of the workmen.

and I shall miss him as long and now Roshan must roam about live. sad and regretful. of Composed by Roshan Office itiistari. Dakhli. 1899. WA KIKUYU WARRIORS. left me. Post Domli. native of the village of Chajanlat. in the thana of Domli. district of Jhelum. hope that he as will the lions. the district of Jhelum. . shooting action. Dated 29th January. in Africa.338 APPENDIX I Oh! Roshan. son Kadur mistaii Bakhsh. and I have related this actually occurred. some accept this present for small reward for his My which native is in story as it Patterson Sahib has as I home is at Chajanlat.

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THE LIBRARY UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA Santa Barbara THIS BOOR IS DUE ON THE LAST DATE STAMPED BELOW. nrpn JUN? 19882. AIIG8 1988 REIDAUG9 198810 .55 P3.2.

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