1l

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

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

who have perhaps never been very far away from civilisation.PREFACE IT I is with feelings of the greatest diffidence that . determined to much hesitation at last do I so. have no doubt that many of my readers. The railway. will be inclined to think that some of the can only assure them the facts rather than otherI incidents are exaggerated. which has modernised the aspect . 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. It events occurred. 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.

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

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

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. . A usually a tale of adventures. But no have put some on record myself.FOREWORD bably have added of victims. for in of three trees Col. Patterson was watching on that night of terrors. 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. Patterson. and only at last brought to an end by the resource and determination of one man. 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. often very pathetic. From stories the time of Herodotus until to-day. all I remembered about it. . begged me . 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. lion I innumerable have been told and written.

a great pity that manent form. referring to this story. displayed in attacking. let me say that I have spent the best. single-handed. 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 . 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. described the those two you sent me. but I think that most of his is readers will agree with full me that the whole volume of interest and information. and I venture assure will Col. It is Patterson's book . The in account given all by Col. President Roosevelt be amongst most interested readers of his book." it should not be preserved in perWell. I am now glad to think that in will be preserved to permanent form Patterson the that . Finally. . is most remarkable It is account of which it we have any record. lions.FOREWORD and it xi was only " : in the last letter I received from him velt that. President RooseI wrote think that the incident in of the Uganda man-eating articles lions.

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

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.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 .

107 CHAPTER THK SNVAHILI XI II~ AND OTHKR NATIVK TRIP. THK DKVIII OF I HI' SECOND M \N-KATKK . ()4 CHAPTER X THE COMPLETION OF THK T>AY(> KR1DUK . .xiv CONTENTS HAPTER IX PAGB .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 .

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. AT NAIROBI ' 289 CHAPTER XXVII THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND 296 APPENDIX 3'7 .

.

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

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. 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 " . 121 123 We arrived at M'Gogo's capital " in the 124 Making pombe hollowed-out stump of a tree" .. 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.... .... 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" . " " 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 .. . Mabruki . I pitched a tent over it" " They found him stuck fast in the bushes of the l>oma 62 64 . brightly-coloured cloth themselves only in " attire a short kilt " . . 119 120 Such was my . cook.. ...

. which bowled the antelope over stone-dead" managed to bring them " ... . 241 277 . .. 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.. . 234 235 236 237 Wa Kikuyu Wa Wikuyu " " 239 240 of the The women " Kikuyu carry the heavy loads Din" Spooner's plucky servant.. with Collabus Monkey N'derobbo Girl . 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.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... Imam Wa . the man-eaters' den " ! 1 56 "\Vatchtheanimalscomedowntodrink" " The antelope swinging by his feet " Hippo Head " 159 163 165 .

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

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

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

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

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

and . therefore.MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO " " of small boats and dug-outs manned by crowds After a short of shouting and gesticulating natives. encounter. fight between some rival Swahili boatmen for my luggage and person. 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 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. enquired where the headI As soon as I landed. Now. officials from one of the Customs quarters of the railway were to be found.

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

MY ARRIVAL AT TSAVO creepers hanging in luxuriant festoons from the branches. 1000. On arrival at Kilindini. itself It is naturally occupied most of my supposed to have been founded but the about A. discovery of ancient ." pitched my line. 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. 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. Mombasa attention.D. Meanwhile I " I PITCHED MY TEXT UNDER SOME SHADY PALMS.

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

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

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

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

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

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

engine-driver took no notice of our shouts. and had exert our strength to drag it on board the train. but at last attention. we had come we made a short halt in order to inspect some construction work which was On going on." Soon after this we reached Voi.14 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO signals CHAP. and we succeeded in attracting his and the had train fallen. we soon discovered that a pleasant change had occurred in the character of . 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. about a hundred this miles from the coast. and as was the most yet important station on the line that to.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

and On the flesh looked dry. and lay a short distance away from the other remains.) THE TENT FROM WHICH Jemadar UNGAN SINGH WAS CARRIED OFF. 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. as if it had been sucked. all round was covered with blood and morsels of flesh and bones. The ground a dreadful spectacle presented itself. reaching the spot where the body had been devoured. but the unfortunate jemadars head left intact. (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. had been save for the holes made by the lion's tusks on seizing him.

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

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

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. it was most difficult to forestall them. and accordingly continued to devote all my spare time to Many a crawling about through the undergrowth. particular place they invariably avoided that and seized their victim for the night from some other Hunting them by day. gave up hope of some day finding their lair. 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. dense wilderness as surrounded us. time when attempting I to force to my way through this bewildering tangle had be released by r my gun" . They almost appeared. too. owing to . from there onwards. so that no matter in how likely or how tempting a spot we lay in wait for them. as however careful the latter may be. 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. moreover. to have an extraordinary and uncanny faculty of finding out our plans beforehand. so that the lions had a range of some eight miles on either side of Tsavo to work upon . " 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. was an exceedingly tiring and really foolhardy undertaking. in such a camp.

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. knocking over both man and in beast. or became entangled tins a rope by which two empty neck. Shortly after this Greek contractor equally named Themistocles Pappadimitrini had an marvellous escape. and one or two relieve amusing incidents occurred to the tension from which our nerves were On one occasion an enterprisbeginning to suffer. episode. the lions were not always successful a efforts to capture human being for their nightly meal. the Greek was quite unhurt and suffered from nothing worse than a . and the lion was just about to seize the trader. for the rest of the night. to the intense relief of the terrified bunniah. off with the mattress Though rudely awakened. The donkey was other his claws badly wounded. when suddenly a lion sprang out on him. ing bunniah (Indian trader) was riding along on his donkey late one night. was sleeping peacefully in when a lion broke in. am glad to in their say. a shivering with fear. his tent one night. 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. when in some way. and seized on which he was He and made lying. who quickly made his way up the nearest tree and remained there. I At this early stage of the struggle.

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

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

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

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

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

am D .

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

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

me only too plainly dreaded foes had once more eluded me. and dragged it with him until he was forced to let go by He being stopped by the side of the tent. lonely vigil I had the mortification of hearing shrieks direction and cries coming from the telling of the that new our hospital. The lion get foot its head in below the canvas. As soon as the lion managed his throat to get him after clear of the tent. then caught hold of a tent rope. 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. 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. vacated boma in the hope of getting an opportunity of bagging one of them but in the middle of my . and ran up and down the boma . with his head towards the centre of the tent and his feet nearly touching the side. The bhisti. like a huge cat with a mouse. and he sprang at a few vicious shakes the poor bhisti s agonising cries were silenced for ever. it appears. had been lying on the floor. The brute then seized him in his mouth.36 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. seized out. 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 clung its it tightly to until it broke.

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

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

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

fold alert. The lion I shouted. After this there was intense " silence again " ! for a second or two. and we too both fired almost simultaneously not a moment it soon. inch or two. Thus ended my the man-eaters. for in another second the brute would assuredly have landed inside the wagon. direct encounter with one of . off in As was. he must have swerved his spring. 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.40 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO fire CH. he would undoubtedly have got one of us. then with a sudden bound a huge body sprang at us. 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 . Mine was nowhere first to be found. 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.

it This was the widening of a rock cutting through which the railway ran just before reached the river. I . another gang of men were laying the foundations of a girder bridge which was to span for all traffic to pass was going .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. smashed to atoms in this way and accordingly I put a gang of faces of the cutting. rock-drillers to work at once and soon had ample room made unimpeded. which had been left ajar. 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. 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. While this on. line.

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

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

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

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

and confused by the shouting ran straight at Shere Shah. One morning when they were thus engaged. the next piece of work was the building of the two . grew so tame that it would at meal times and eat from my When the road for the trolley line was cleared. the a basket over it jemadar. I happened it to arrive just in time life. where it very soon became a great pet. indeed. who promptly dropped it and held fast. to I set men cut work at once to down the jungle and prepare a road on which to lay the double trolley line.46 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Indeed. Terrified it of the men. 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. 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. intervening country. Accordingly. table jump upon my hand. tram line right throwing a the temporary bridge across the Tsavo. to save the graceful little animal's and took it home to my camp. I CHAP. following stream down and re-crossing it again close to the site of the permanent bridge.

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

no one was injured in the operation. As the trolley with its very careful manipulation. 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. 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. the rails tilted up and over went the as I whole thing into the picture.48 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. and the stone was recovered undamaged with but little trouble. came to the sharp incline which led to the log bridge . my Singh. while the overseer. was Presently we returning to the quarry for sand. pushed by two sturdy Pathans. Heera direct Purshotam Hurjee. the slightest. mined pier. while Purshotam and the the bank. just snapped the into the Heera Singh made a wild spring to water get clear of the falling if stone. It rest fled as for their lives to sight. 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. was being hauled across one of these temporary bridges. river. superintended the gangs of men who hauled the ropes at either end in order to steady it up and down the inclines. stood on the top of the stone to operations. heavy load required head mason. trolley which.

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

and were simply ordinary coolies who had posed as masons in order to draw forty-five instead of twelve rupees a month. I had discovered the stone for the bridge. I imme- diately instituted a system of piece-work. 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 . of them had not the faintest notion of stone-cutting. arose with the workmen themselves. have already described and no sooner did the beasts of prey appear to have deserted us. and drew up a scale of pay which would enable the genuine . than other troubles. 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. to I sent down dress to the coast for gangs of it. no less After serious. I our troubles with the lions . for the time being at any rate.

in the hope of me I to This. knew had demanded only a perfectly that of work from each man. however. Now. the impostors in the majority . I had no intention of doing. I had to play (native beds) These . sitting after one evening at the door of my hut.CH. I fair amount These masons were continually having quarrels and fights amongst themselves. as work. jemadar came rushing up to me to say that the men were all fighting and murdering each other with sticks and stones. E 2 . and I had frequently to go down to their camp to quell disturbances and had to separate the Hindus from the Mohammedans. when I heard a great commotion in the masons' camp. which lay Presently a only a few hundred yards away. 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. 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. men I lying stretched had carried up to my own boma on charpoys and Brock being away. as is often the case in this world. I ran back with him at once and but found seven badly out on the ground. succeeded injured in restoring order.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

and after dismissing them. called return to work to upon those who were willing to hold up their hands. behave so and urged them not fools of in this themselves to be made way. jumped down from the rock and if continued my rounds as nothing had happened. of their take I no notice foolish conduct. 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. and I accordingly went on to say that the discontented among them would be allowed to return at once to Mombasa. 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 . and instantly crowd was raised. were upright. while I if the others I resumed work and would Finally heard of no further plotting. I every hand that for the in the then felt moment I the victory was mine. self-respecting Pathans going to allow themselves to be led away by men of that kind? Once having got them to listen to me. I felt a little more secure. and real worker .v TROUBLES WITH THE WORKMEN for it. I said was only one or two to to allow scoundrels among them who had induced them stupidly. would not another them. 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.

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

until occurred to me that should they renew their attacks. a trap would perhaps offer the best chance of getting at them. it not. pieces of telegraph wire.CHAPTER VI THE REIGN OF TERROR THE lions seemed to have got a bad Brock and wagon. strong trap out of wooden tram-rails. the lions would be quite daring enough to enter it in search of them to to and thus be caught. 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. heavy chain. in fact. I accordingly set once. 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. and in a short time managed sufficiently work at make a sleepers. It and a length of was divided into two compart- .

of course." heavy wooden sleepers. and once inside safe. if he entered this rails the other. compartment they were perfectly as between them and the lion. ments men and one for the lion. The door which was to admit the lion was.62 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO one for the CHAP. at the opposite end of the structure. 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. ran a cross wall of iron only three in inches apart. 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. A sliding door at one end admitted the former.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Now the bravest men in the world. and then. 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. When I sent for them. first rails them stopped the passing train by throwing themselves on the in front of the engine. so we had the remains of the coolie buried and once more returned home disappointed. and works were completely the next three weeks practically nothing was done but build "lion-proof" huts for . they flocked my boma . will much less the ordinary Indian coolie. not stand constant district terrors of this sort indefinitely.72 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO left CHAP. 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. the railway for stopped . therefore. not to supply food for No sooner had they either lions or "devils. The whole was by this time thoroughly panic-stricken. the sand which had the marks lion." delivered this ultimatum than a regular stampede took place. swarming on of trucks Some hundreds to the and throwing fled in their possessions anyhow. they After this from the accursed spot. and I was not at all surprised. 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.

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

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

to had written Mr. not believe in the least. rushed back trembling with terror.CHAPTER VII THE DISTRICT OFFICER'S NARROW ESCAPE SOME I little time before the flight of the workmen. and told me to expect him about dinner-time on December 2. as by this time the coolies never remarkable for bravery were in such a . the District Officer. however. 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. train was due I at Tsavo about six o'clock in the evening. the "boy" camp. 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. and informed me that there was no sign of the train or of the railway staff. Whitehead. which His turned out to be the day after the exodus. asking him to come up and assist paign against the lions. He replied accepting the invitation.

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

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

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

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

and the brute quickly disappeared with his prey. the night. On the same day.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. It into the darkness this was. of course. and little caused him or no inconvenience afterwards. . 3.

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

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

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

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

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

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

and it The took eight men to carry him back to camp. his length tail from of nose to tip of was nine feet eight inches. I examined the body and found that two bullets had taken effect one close behind the left shoulder. HEAD OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER. prize The was indeed one tip to be proud of. 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. : 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. he stood three feet nine inches high. evidently penetrating the heart. The news man-eaters country in. .vin DEATH OF THE FIRST MAN-EATER 93 giving ceremonies being over. and the other in the off hind leg.

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

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

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

K. happened. All the same we took every precaution at night. however.I.E. he took a Office.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER 97 the it morning. H . 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. one to or two of which he has kindly allowed He we reproduce in this book. 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. felt and as he had rested several times been badly wounded. After number of photographs. hunt proved fruitless. thoroughly sympathised with us in all the trials had endured from the man-eaters.C. so that I was no longer able to ceased follow the spoor. When I he asked I me if I expected to get the second lion soon.. there was no sign of our enemy for about ten days after this. and accordingly set out as soon as was light. and we began to hope it As that he had died of still his wounds in the bush. of blood sure that he had In the end. For over a mile there was no in difficulty following the I blood-trail. 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. and was me delighted that one at least was dead. About this time Sir Guilford Molesworth.

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

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

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. Instantly he sprang out and made a most determined charge clown on us. so that was free to keep a good look-out. for with a fierce growl he turned off with great long bounds. but unfortunately had no knock-down and made effect. I I took a native tracker with me. His advantage of every bit of cover as he came. me that the last of these had We first awaited daylight with impatience. and showing his tusks in an angry snarl. I at once took careful aim and fired. and another growl told also taken effect. I him this accordingly waited away he got quite close about twenty yards and then fired my '303 at his chest. three managed have more shots at him from the magazine rifle. while Mahina followed immediately behind with a Martini carbine. was heard right of Looking cautiously through the bushes. 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.TOO THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. I heard it the bullet strike him. I fired again and knocked him over . however. Splashes of blood being quickly . plentiful. I- Before he to disappeared from sight. and at the glimmer of dawn we set out to hunt him clown. could see the man-eater glaring out in our direction. but in a second .

time.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. To my surprise and no little alarm he jumped up and attempted another charge. Martini. effect. a This Martini bullet in the chest and another in the head finished in his tracks him for good and all . his had barely time reach before he arrived was. 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. and died gamely. however. not five yards By this time all the workmen in camp. he Rather foolishly. den charge had proved too both he and the carbine were by The terror of the sudmuch for Mahina. once scrambled down from the tree and walked up to- wards him. he started I to limp back to the thicket but by this time had I seized the carbine from Mahina. biting savagely at a branch which had fallen to the ground. I at over and lay motionless. however. hoping to stop him with my hand for the To my dismay. and this time well on their there way up a nothing to loss of time tree. attracted . leg. A had no apparent so I put out it. fired fell and the first shot for from it seemed to give him his quietus. late. he dropped away from me. the brute would most certainly Even as it swing myself up out of the foot of the tree. In the circumstances suit. it was not there. I to at When the lion found he was too .

THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. I had the lion carried to my boma. 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. On examination we found no in than six bullet holes little I the body. had arrived on the scene. rejoicings of the natives "HE MEASURED NINE FEET SIX INCHES FROM TIP OF NOSE TO TIP OF TAIL. AND STOOD THREE FEET ELEVEN AND A HALF INCHES HIGH. which was less close at hand." and coolies. 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. feet six- inches from of nose to tip of and stood . by the sound of the firing. amid the wild could pieces.

your Overseer. skin was disfigured by being deeply scored all over by the " boma thorns. Best of all. the change which took place in the attitude of the workmen towards me lions. the of his companion. present you with this bowl as a token of our gratitude to you for your bravery in killing . in As the poem relates our troubles somewhat quaint and it biblical language. once they could not now do enough for me. and natives up and down the line to have a " look at my trophies and at the devil-killer ". as they called me. as well as with a long poem \\ ritten in Hindustani describing all our trials and my ultimate victory. Timekeepers. indeed. The bowl shall always consider hardest follows SIR. most highly prized and The inscription on it reads as my We. I have given a translation of I in the appendix. 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 . The news of the death of the second " devil soon spread far and wide over the country. to notice by man-eaters. but. and as a token of their gratitude they presented me with a beautiful silver bowl. the coolies who had absconded actually travelled from came flocking back to Tsavo. as they did. : won trophy. Mistaris and Workmen. after I had killed the two Instead of wishing to murder me.

and rid until we found an enthusiastic sportsman to get of these our enterprise was seriously hindered. We Your grateful servants. Sir. your own life. At last labourers entirely declined to go on unless they were guarded by an iron entrenchment. shall ever remain. on behalf of your Workmen. Dated Before at Tsavo. January 30. BaboO PURSHOTAM HURJEE PURMAR. happiness and prosperity." it may be of interest to mention lions possess the distinction. Of course it is difficult to work a railway under these lions. 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. In presenting you with this bowl. probably unique among wild animals. " I leave the subject of the man-eaters of that these two Tsavo. 1899. 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. Speaking of the in which had been of encountered the construction the : Uganda Railway.104 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO lions at great risk to CHAP." . of being devoured we all add our prayers for your long life. of having been specifically referred to in the House of Lords by the Prime Minister of the difficulties day. conditions. Overseer and Clerk of Works.

. wish to propitiate the local deities is easily understood. in savageness or in sheer insolent contempt for man. and if the Samaritans had quarter as " The good cause their for their fears as had the railway coolies. 105 The Spectator of March entitled 3. and much preferred live men to dead donkeys. but the wily man-eaters would not touch them. 1 I may mention . and with effect.ix DEATH OF THE SECOND MAN-EATER Also. both in American and West Central The that poison was tried. carcases of transport animals which had died from the bite poisoned of the tsetse fly were placed in likely spots. early in against this kind of which has hitherto been regarded man the history of man. 1900. had an the article "The Lions that Stopped Railway. 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. were collated and brought together. white or black. the story of these two beasts. for its powers are employed with strange skill by the men in the tropical forest. it would not equal in tragedy or atrocity. back. If the whole body of lion anecdote. It is curious that the Tsavo lions were not killed by poison. " To what a distance the whole story carries us . but without effect. for strychnine is easily 1 Poison may have been used used. from the days of the Assyrian Kings till the last year of the nineteenth century. ." taken : from which the following extracts are parallel to the story of the lions which the rebuilding of Samaria must occur to stopped everyone. armed or unarmed.

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

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

and the . and without the difficulty. and laid with rails . I was driven erect temporary piers in the middle of each span. This contrivance acted and by manipulation of ropes and pulleys the heavy stones were swung into position quickly capitally. 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. large wood. As I had neither winches nor to haul these over into sufficient blocks and tackle to position.io8 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO block of CHAP. built up crib-shape of wooden sleepers. distance between the piers with iron girders. so that in a very short time masonry of the bridge was completed.

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

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

I watched expectantly for the two temporary TIffi COMPLETED TSAVO BRIDGE. tearing up trees by the roots and straws. and standing on my bridge. trolley bridges which.x COMPLETION OF THE TSAVO BRIDGE in over the country. whirling them along like Steadily higher and higher rose the flood. The river started to rise rapidly. soon flooding its banks and becoming a raging murky torrent. 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. I w ait r . it will in be remembered. 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 .

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

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

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

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

with jet-black hair and a tail. and in a very few minutes the skin had been neatly taken and the famishing natives began a ravenous meal on the raw flesh. 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 . 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. off. chase. bigger than a collie. Wild dogs are also very destructive.n6 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH. and often caused great losses among our sheep and goats. when really driven by hunger. I white-tipped bushy had not brought my rifle. thirty yards of me. x Next morning a party of starving Wa Kamba happened to be passing just as I was about to skin the leopard. and will attack anything. allowed to meat. I man at or beast. 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. specimen and never had another chance of obtain- was very sorry that I as I badly wanted a .

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

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

so that thev migfht wash and bathe in the cool waters c> s railway station : of the river. Nothing ever seems Swahili porter. 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. they join another caravan and begin a new safari to the Great Lakes. his load . to damp the spirits of the Be his life ever so hard.xi SWAHILI AND OTHER NATIVE TRIBES a 119 have their goodly to number of rupees to draw on These generally disappear with wonderful rapidity. and when no more return Mombasa. or even beyond. fun can be bought.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

M'KAMHA \YOMAN. province. During this period they several times swooped clown on isolated railway maintenance gangs and utterly annihilated them. they are peace-loving people. who inhabit the Ukambani Andei tribe. being. 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. though when driven it to by hunger they will commit very cruel and treacherous acts of wholesale murder. the front teeth.split up into many clans under who govern in a chiefs patri- archal kind of way. They are a very large little but have cohesion. While the railway was being constructed. and to the may be seen from M'toto Athi River. rule. 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. As a a too. a severe famine occurred in their part of the country.

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

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

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

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

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

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

As with lined the Tsavo. and ivory to the coast. which hippo find capital covert the year "THE BANKS OK THE SABAKI ARE LINED." round. beside which the Tsavo looks very insignificant. and proceeded some way down the Sabaki. 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.'36 rivers THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. smugwhere dhows for are in readiness to convey them to Persia or Arabia. .WITH TREES. Several islands are dotted about tall in mid-stream and are overgrown with in reeds and all rushes. I believe. trees the banks various of the Sabaki are with of kinds.

in which to spend of the Having some difficulty in we crossed to the other rather a risky finding a likely spot. we found innumerable traces of both hippo and rhino in fact the difficulty was to decide which track was the best and I freshest. first time I I had seen one of these sight. however. 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. It was the antelope. which 137 Mabruki soon got in ready. As there was still about an hour before sundown. started near a night. . signalled to me. who was a little way ahead. out with Mahina to find a suitable " and tree. but proany other game was We had not gone very far when Mahina. fine I and was delighted with the but might have got twenty yards or so nearer. about. 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. hippo run ". Here. I left my followers encamped a safe boma a mile away from the river. and managed to get safely over. on what was evidently an island during flood time. 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.

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

xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO branch. great hippo made in appearance and came splashing along in our direction. I therefore my rifle Mahina on reaching the ground. just as to was this helpless half-way the hippo suddenly came out calmly bitterly ground. but unfor- tunately took up his position behind a tree which. to was nothing a be seen. After waiting at for last some considerable his time. Soon the jungle around us with its began to be alive call. most tantalising way. 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. this For ungainly from his covert. condition. the and splashing about what seemed hours creature to to I his heart's for content. peculiar sounds a night bird would a crocodile shut his jaws with a snap. I my ill-luck and want of patience. holding on by the creepers lower to me which encircled the tree. completely hid him Here he stood tooting and snorting from view. . and began to descend carefully. the great from his shelter and lumbered lamented along right underneath me. 139 outspreading and commenced our vigil. 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. To my I intense vexation in and disappointment.

the great beast had passed our tree. I likelihood of getting a shot at him from our foot. Then we heard lion the by. however. but considerably startled at the thought that the hippo might come back at any moment. 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. but he was evidently as much frightened as I was. so I did not disturb them. 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. awe-inspiring- roar of a hungry close and presently challenge a another hippo gave little forth his tooting way down the river. Shortly after this we saw- two rhino come down were too to the river to drink . There . I climbed up to my perch again without loss of time. traction engine. and they gradually waddled up-stream out of sight. for could almost . snorted loudly. As there seemed no tree. smashing through them like a In screwing myself round to watch him go.140 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. conditions that was under these exasperatingsaw a hippo for the first time. and is without doubt he looking brute I the ugliest and most forbidding have ever beheld.have touched It I his broad back as he passed. The moment he scented us. and dived into the bushes close by. and returned no more. they far off for a shot.

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 .xii A NIGHT AFTER HIPPO I 141 were numbers of animals about. In this manner. I was surprised to find that I On could see nothing of the hippo I . not twenty-five yards away. but I soon realised that on lowering my was looking too far ahead. and waded peering cautiously through the reeds at the corner of the island. lying down in the shallow water. was quite our knees. 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. His half covered closeness safety. was eager for the fray. to find that we were again baulked by a small There was a good breeze rush-covered island. us out of the shadow of the bush. only and practically facing us. to have a shot at him from there. however. blowing directly from him. with nerves strung to the highest only we reached the edge of the river in safety. so I thought the best thing to do was to attempt to get on to the island and too. so we let our- selves quietly into the water. and neither of us in felt am for sure that very comfortable as we . for eyes there he was. Mahina. on the other side of which our quarry could be heard. which here shallow and reached only to slowly across.

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

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. but to frighten him. We put us all in excellent spirits. Of course did not mean this glutton. As we trudged along towards the hill. which northern bank. as if did would be I sure to follow up and kill him. the Wa Kamba. we a frown- N'dungu Escarpment four ing ridge which runs for a great distance parallel to the Sabaki. 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. so I wanted seriously . careful that a it it warned him that he had better be lion did not scent the meat. I heard a .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. Mabruki was a great and by no means courageous.

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 . while a young one was lying down in the grass quite close to me. distance For some time I remained concealed.THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP." away and straining their long necks to get at the tops of some mimosa-like trees. and on looking over the crest. peculiar noise behind a small rising on our right.

and were slowly making ment. as I Much should have liked to have added a giraffe to collection of trophies.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. their way back to their home on the escarp- They seemed on the most affectionate terms. towards the escarp- . shoot these rather rare and I left very harmless creatures.RASS (JUITK CLOSE gently biting each other on the shoulders. my as I think it a pity to them undisturbed. is required for a We pushed on. unless one special purpose. occasionally entwining their great long necks and "A YOUNG ONE WAS LYING DOWN TO ME. accordingly." IN THE C.

ment. the scene. for ground rose gently upwards to the foot of the ridge. on which we could walk upright the greater part of the way. to find a rhino path which afforded a fairly comfortable and open road. could be seen for the many miles winding its way through parched wilderness. explore it I had not time but I to on this particular day. 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. and the railway like a shining snake. The climb up the escarpment itself was a stiff one. home tents. and had the to be negotiated principally on all-fours. Here I found the same kind of nyika as that round . Having taken a few photographs of we turned and struck through the N'dungu Plateau. and of course the inevitable " I was fortunate enough.146 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO I CHAP. made we a mental note to do so on some future occasion. After a two hours' journey from the river sat panting on the summit after our scramble and sur- veyed the valley of the Tsavo. buildings were plainly visible. Tsavo Station and other itself. 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. the bridge. which lay spread out Our like a map about five hundred feet below us. wait-a-bit thorns. and was covered more or less densely with stunted trees " and bushes. however.

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

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

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

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

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

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. and best the thunder of the falling water can then be plainly water. when one of these brutes caught him by the hand and attempted to draw him in. over seven miles away. . We crossed the falls. 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. As we made our way up discovered a beautiful waterfall the Sabaki. On one occasion while I was in the country a British officer had a very lucky escape. . At time the river was in low consequently did not look their but in flood time they form a fine sight. we about a hundred' and of fifty feet high not a sheer drop. and the falls heard at Tsavo.152 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO stock of meat which CH. when the wind river after is in the right direction. He was filling his water bottle at the river.

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. I for the day owing to lack of set off for them. which greatly facilitated our progress. for instance. " Fattie "). As we were making our way along this path through the dry bed of a . so on one occasion when work had been stopped material. as soon as we had crossed the river and had struck into the jungle. accompanied by Mahina and a Punjaubi coolie. who was so stout that he went by the name of Moota (i. On this occasion.e. which I mapped out bit by bit during my explorations. we were in fortunate enough to find a rhino path leading the right direction. 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.

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

with here and there a copper bangle such as the natives wear. in which were In the indistinct tracks of numberless animals. soft sand. 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. Through this tangle there was a well-defined archway. so decided to enter and explore what lay beyond. I had no . stood a little sandy hillock. I stumbled upon the " demons ". he snorted loudly and crashed off through the tangled undergrowth. this ravine. doubtless made by I I the regular passage of rhino and hippo. In this Beyond all doubt. and quite by accident. As I followed up walking stealthily along in the delightful shade of the overhanging palms. the entrance and inside the cavern I was thunder- struck to find a number of human bones. close under an overhanging tree. one corner of this bay. 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. the man-eaters' den! manner. I observed on my left a little nullah which opened out of the main channel through a confused mass of jungle and creeper. 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.xiv FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN 155 could take aim.

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

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. 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. I so I selected the largest and fired. " to make the meat lawful. who rushed up in ecstasy. By the time the zebra was skinned. When them he dropped in his tracks stoneI stood over the handsome creature I for Not so having killed him. as he remarked. and crouching under the flying past. Moota. and advanced along This turned out to be a good move." for Moota was a devout follower of the Prophet. bushes saw a line first of startled zebras This was the time I had seen these beautifully marked animals in their wild state. and as was quite close to dead. This custom has often caused for me great annoyance. darkness was fast approaching. be a living animal. Under it we built a . for soon we heard the galloping of a herd of some animal or other across our front. was positively sorry was done. however. and This before I could stop him had cut his throat. We the bed of the ravine. so to we selected a suitable tree in which pass the night.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. I rushed round a corner in the path a few yards ahead.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

XIV FINDING THE MAN-EATERS' DEN as all I 165 which. said. . colour have . HI Pro HKAl). 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. 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. and stood erect. It was evidently much startled. hissing venomously . I came upon it suddenly one day when out shooting.

In this were some fresh rhino footprints which seemed barely an hour old. to emerge suddenly on a broad and wellall-fours beaten track along which in I could walk comfortably an upright position. One day was out exploring in the dense bush some six or seven miles away from camp. so determined to follow them up. The roadway was beaten in places into a fine white dust by the I . owing to the fact that I had to spend most of my time crawling on through the jungle. I was very pleased.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. and found my progress more than usually slow. After . therefore. nor to be realised. 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.

and by dusk we were safely but uncomfortably perched among I the branches directly over the path. just at that expected his head to appear. had in my rifle I pointing it in the direction which But. who scented us immedi- gave a mighty snort and then dived madly away through the jungle. the clearing Nearer and nearer we I heard him coming steadily on. 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. moment the wind veered round and blew straight from us towards the rhino.CH. so I resting-place which was to made up my mind spend a night in the overhanging branches of the tree. that to see was light enough for me into him when he little emerged from the bushes round the foot of our tree. however. ately. The next afternoon. 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. For some considerable . monster as he approached there I knew. Unfortunately the moon had not was unable to catch sight of the . alas. This. Mahina and made our way back to the place. and ready. to We had scarcely been there an hour when our delight we heard in a great rhino plodding along the track our direction. was evidently a regularly used. accordingly.

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

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

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

will only it and it is said that if a hunter stand perfectly still on meeting a rhino. but equally indifferent eyesight. they I execute a most determined charge. These huge party by the suddenness of his rush. it 171 At got fainter and fainter. human being and make no attempt the next day. 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. as I I did not like to for it. and not in any way to be depended upon. however. was exceedingly sorry for this. and there was no possibility of telling which way our finally . that I have . was being smuggled down to the coast and was proceeding path. will pass him by without attempting to molest I him. so that we had to abandon the search the ground round about was rocky. One day they Tsavo in the afternoon very will sheer off on meeting a to attack .xv UNSUCCESSFUL RHINO HUNTS length. was no help arrived at so we struck out for home and tired. Rhinos are extraordinary animals. quarry had gone. feel bound to add. beasts have a very keen sense of smell. 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. chained neck to neck as was the custom. hungry and disappointed. for no apparent reason. and ceased altogether. leave him wounded but there . however.

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

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

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

while a little o child held on to her skirt. Some considerable way back I met her toiling alone with an infant in her arms. and that his wife and children were this I following behind along the road. and without waiting to hear any further particulars hurried I on as could fast as possible to give poor Mrs. 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. O'Hara engineer in (the charge of the road-making). At directed to find men to the hospital and told them where Dr. O'Hara. with his wife and children." On enquiring what exactly had happened.CH. I went quickly to meet them and called out to ask what they were carrying. was encamped in the Wa Taita country. xvi A WIDOW'S STORY 175 and Dr. Rose. They shouted back " The master ") and when I asked what bwana. and so exhausted by her trying march carrying the baby that she was scarcely able night's experience . Bwana " that during the night their master had been killed by a the lion. about twelve miles away from Voi. helped her to finish the distance to the doctor's tent she was so unstrung by her terrible I . Rose mentioned that Mr. Early next morning I went out for a stroll with my shot-gun. they replied "Bwana O'Hara. they told me (" . utterly tired out with the what assistance to long walk. Fearing that some accident had happened.

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

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

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

shot from a tree top by one of the Wa _~ IN THE BAZAAR AT KAMPALA.XVI A WIDOW'S STORY '79 the wondering faces of the children. the gathering gloom of the closing evening. 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 . for this tragedy was by a poisoned arrow. very terrible tragedy of real I am glad to say that within a few weeks' time the lion that killed was responsible Taita.

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

Here I could see for I At Machakos Road miles across stretches of beautiful. 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. the difference in temperature was also very marked. timbered here and there like it open downs. the whole mountain from base to summit standing out clearly and grandly. found the country and the climate very different from that to which. where game of all kinds abounds and can be seen grazing peacefully within a few lies through a hundred yards of the railway. I had grown accustomed at Tsavo. On the way I was lucky enough to get some fine views of Kilima N'jaro. and the air felt fresh and cool . xvn AN INFURIATED RHINO 181 waterless expanses. with the lofty peak of Kibo topping the fleecy clouds with its snowy head. an English park and . is some four thousand feet higher above the sea level than Tsavo.CH. bare of everything except grass. and it is about two hundred miles from the coast through the not until Makindu is reached that a run change is apparent. the character of the country remains unaltered for some considerable distance. which the great herds of game keep closely cropped. the fairly open and interesting journey tract of country. however. After leaving Tsavo. From this place.

which My instructions were to hurry on the construcNairobi. First the earth surface be prepared and rendered perfectly smooth if . and level cuttings have to be . 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. move has to as by clockwork. fifty I miles further on across soon began to find plateEverything has to laying most interesting work.182 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO in CHAP." tion. which lay about the Athi Plains and . made and hollows hills banked up tunnels have to be bored through .

XVII AN INFURIATED RHINO 183 .

fishplates. another gang drops the rails in their yet another brings along the keys. as it . and bridges thrown across coolies Then at a line of regular moves . was necessary do order to avoid undue delay taking place owing to shortage of material of any kind. 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. and. along. was rather unusual for me to go so far. CHAP. girders to for this temporary bridges. 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. in etc. while on other days we might do over a mile all depended on the nature of the country we had to cover. and nuts while following these are the men gang who actually fix the rails on the sleepers and link up Finally.1 84 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO rivers. placing sleepers intervals places bolts . we succeeded platelaying. On one occasion . I Com- made it my custom to take a rails walk each morning for some distance ahead of line of the railway. 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. able lo lay only a few yards. the packing from one to another. 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. .

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

for not a drop could be obtained on the way.192 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO of any of these CHAP. there can be no danger extinct. employed about railhead. which could not be accomplished under a progressed onwards couple of months. 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. as any break- . species becoming While crossing this dry expanse. the waterless As we this into belt. the greatest difficulty I had to contend with was the provision of sufficient water for the three thousand workmen WATERBUCK.

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

I expedition and had succeeded asked in if the place was far away. replied. it M'bali kidogo (" A little distance"). had had experience of M^bali kidogo before Irishman's "mile and a bit. who appeared starving there was a sore famine among the natives of the district at the time was given to be. he . and obtained some I insight into many of the strange and barbarous tribe customs of the Masai. 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. and got the reply " " Swahili: I Now. and made a ravenous meal. full my tank trains." he . the food and drink. have heard. 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. 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. if it could be relied upon so I questioned him closely.i 94 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO the disadvantage and delay caused by CHAP." . On being asked I his business. to which interesting belonged. it "that the to him. Great Master wants water I can show This was good news.

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

specimens of Thomson's and Grant's I might have attempted a shot once or twice. startled feet. Just as I raised the knife to strike. and told Mahina to drive the hunting knife right through his heart so as to put him quickly out of doing all pain. tions. Just then. dropping him ran up to the fallen beast. but the probability was that owing to the it long range would have resulted only is in a wound. saw a herd of wildebeeste. I was suddenly jumping to his by the wildebeeste For a moment he . I handed him my rifle and took the knife in order to do it myself. and that I vain can be called "stalking. In this fruitless manner we covered several miles. for I singled out the biggest head and waiting a favourable at once. nothing so painful as to see an animal limping about in a crippled condition. 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. which appeared to be dying. I them. dried-up water-hole. As Mahina was I not it this as skilfully or as quickly as thought might be done. in all direc- but the animals were much more shy than was in they had been in the morning. and seemed unable to pierce the tough hide. I moment. and with much care managed to get within three hundred yards of however.196 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO Game abounded it CHAP. fired at him." when as a matter of fact one has to move in the openstalked if it splendid gazelle.

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

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

sher!" ("Look. When we were about a hundred yards off. the lion also twisted round and so always make a shoulder . the reddish object again appeared and I saw that it was nothing less ever. hidden as it was in the grassy thicket. tried my best to follow on. Sahib. ! Master. . and called out. as he lay there grimly watching us. we shot possible but as moved. but apparently oblivious of his As presence. This time Mahina also saw what it was. a lion "Dekko. there would he go also him. edging up towards the beast. 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. while advice. my own So we kept we drew felt nearer.xviii LIONS ON THE ATHI PLAINS 199 and we gradually approached it. than the shaggy head of a lion peeping over the long grass. would disappear from view for a moment and it my . I whispered to him to be quiet "). I therefore if circled cautiously round in order to see the back to the covert was sufficiently thin at . He answered well he kept his word. I watched the lion carefully out of the corner of Every now and then he eye as we closed in. . 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. I and to take no notice of him.

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

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

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

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

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

allowing himself to be led about by a rope and head collar. my He used to be left to graze picketed by a to long rope to a stake in the ground I . that he had disappeared. enquiry. Some few days after our successful sortie against P 2 . and would drink from a bucket and eat from hand." On making annoyance.XIX THE STRICKEN CARAVAN 211 he became very tame and domesticated. 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. 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. but one after- noon on returning to camp found.

very little among such a number. The ranks of the caravan were terribly decimated. and although he worked like a slave he could do had. and dozens of men were left dead or dying It was a case along the roadside after each march. doubtless caused by their having eaten food to which they were entirely a pitiable state! frightful A unaccustomed. their simple diet in their own homes consisting almost entirely of bananas. tins of I boiled a bucketful of water. they were in the most hopeto far too weak to be able as I do any- thing at all for themselves. from which they also make a most refreshing and stimulating drink. but alas. of the survival of the fittest. added some condensed milk and the greater part of a bottle of brandy to it. Thirteen poor wretches fell out to die close to less condition my and tent . and fed them with the mix- . the zebra. As soon discovered them. ! with what a terrible difference All their gaiety and lightappearance heartedness was gone. 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. while the Basoga themselves seemed quite indifferent to the sufferings of their comrades.212 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. and the poor fellows were in their epidemic of dysentery had broken out amongst them. the great caravan of Basoga porters re- turned from the coast on their way back to their own country in .

and died that night . they was moved them. indeed. until finally they were well enough to resume their journey to Usoga. in order to make arrangements for the building of a the Stony Athi River so-called temporary bridge over a tributary of the Athi. Master "). and I directions for the care of the sick Basoga. My road lay along the taken by the home-returning caravan. could hardly do even this. and then open their mouths. as knew should be away all night.xix THE STRICKEN CARAVAN Their feeble cries for some of . 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. 213 ture. this nourish- ment were heartrending some could only whisper. very grateful indeed for the care which we had taken of on. Bwana" ("Master. " Bwana. 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. and banks. and every hundred yards or so I passed the swollen corpse of some unfortunate porter who had fallen route . but the re- maining seven I managed to nurse into complete As our camp recovery in about a fortnight's time. beyond all help. were brought along from place to place on the top of trucks. One or two of them. 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.

however. out and died by the wayside. This was too much me. so I put spurs my pony as if scoundrel. On . am glad to say. the main further and I then marched him in front of the caravan. but on rifle seeing me dis- mount and point my tried to run at him. Before very long I came up with and here I the rearguard of this straggling army. back. moment he put his hand on his knife and half or it drew from its sheath. though sullenly enough. I this little act of retributive pushed on towards the Stony 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. coveting the highly-coloured and highly-prized article.214 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. rolled himself up in his scarlet blanket and lay down by the roadside to die whereupon one of his companions. This he eventually did. act of was witness of as unfeeling an barbarism as can well be imagined. I me to camp of Here on. who. turned . kiboko. it he desisted and away. making and galloped up to the to thrash him with my In a whip made of rhinoceros hide. seized one end of the blanket. had him soundly theft. thrashed for his brutality and After performing justice. utterly unable to go a step further. I I made clear to him by at signs. A poor wretch. and callously rolled the dying to man out of it as one would unroll for a bale of goods.

and my glasses discovered that it was a finefew looking buck with a capital pair of horns." inordinately fond . wriggled from tuft to folds of the ground until eventually handing them my pony. and devoured huge chunks of the raw and still . over stone-dead. so. doubtless the aid of A in the hope of obtaining meat. Basoga from the caravan had followed me. ripped him open. of which they are " I GOT NEAR ENOUGH FOR A SAFE SHOT.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. I tuft and crawled along in the I got near enough for a safe shot. which bowled the antelope Scarcely had he dropped when the Basoga swooped down on him. WHICH BOWLED THE ANTELOPE OVER STONE-DEAD.

two of them willingly agreed to go on with me and carry the head and haunch of the I gazelle. 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 promptly cut off the head but my own people. close to on the banks of the Stony where the railway was to cross. I dismounted at . quivering flesh. were thoroughly disgusted the sight of this very hideous-looking pig. I at camped for the night Athi. When we I had got very nearly to the place where intended to camp for the night. and who were all good Mohammedans. and of made my notes temporary bridge.216 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. with my tent just at this juncture. On my way I had to pass the left. gave them. but I was necessary for the At the time the river was absowhat that it knew might at any moment . a great wart-hog suddenly jumped up almost at my horse's feet. lutely dry. lapping up the warm blood in the In return for the meat which palms of their hands. The Basoga were delighted at this. who arrived tusks. morning I started early on my return The next to railhead. 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. and as he had very fine and exceptionally long once and bagged him too.

warming himself. shot him through the head as he lay. but reptiles. 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. unfortunately peared. WART-HOG . his skin of old gold and bright green sparkling brilliantly in the sunshine.XIX THE STRICKEN CARAVAN horse and to gallop as fast as possible I 217 my to the pestilential spot. railhead I When through had almost got back happened to notice a huge serpent stretched out on the grass. and was He I probably drowsy and sated with a heavy meal. notice of me as I appeared to take little cautiously approached. the his beautiful colouring soon to disap- old gold turning white and the bright green to lustreless black.

CHAPTER XX A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER IN spite of all our difficulties. had to be arranged for the Athi itself. rapid progress continued to be made with the line. which was some eight miles further on. and on April 24 we reached the Stony Athi River. 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. that this was anything but a safe place in which . 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. Each day railhead crept a mile or so further across the Plains. 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. On one of these occasions was busy attending to the pitching of my tent after arriving at the Athi late in the evening.

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

The which runs almost due north here. . 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. In some it places is this quite narrow. so I started to work them out for myself and soon discovered a serious misprint. This being rectified in my calculations. 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. Every now and again. too. and in laying this out with to difficulty. Eventually I came to the conclusion that there must be some mistake in the table of angles from which I had been working. but always with the same result. crossing on which I had decided had sharp curve in I be approached by a somewhat the line. temporary diversion of the line. when at last everything came out accurately and After I to my this satisfaction. and is fringed all along its course by a belt of thorny fringe is hardwood trees. carrying out the work. and accordingly determined to try my luck after lions had pegged out up-stream river towards the source of the Athi. with grassy glades here and there among the trees. repeated the whole operation time after time. I proceeded to lay out the curve again. I thought I richly deserved a few hours' play.220 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO The CHAP.

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

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

and as noiselessly as possible I slipped from cover to cover in my endeavour to obtain a peep over the bank. for he fell over instantly and lay like a log. I was able to look over the bank. 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 . except Mahina. And lion there. I accordingly made for this with the greatest caution. me. to remain behind . not me. without making the slightest sound. 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. It was as he had suddenly been hit with a sledge-hammer. crept steadily forward and from the shelter of a friendly tree behind the bole of which I hid myself. by the up then I had heard no movement on I the part of at last. my enemy. the . Emboldened fact that to till a certain extent.xx A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 223 down by a rhino going to and fro to drink. ordering all the men. crouched the but the native directed luckily first who had seen him and I who had very me to where he was. if On my calling out that the lion was done for. 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. my slow advance with a fast-beating heart. a tree. raised my rifle cautiously. not twenty yards from watching. however.

might as were very fine ones. lion lifted I Before I from the reeds on to the dry allowed anything further to be done. they did in a not seem to care in the slightest and twinkling had the dead bank. yards fired again. had the 200- yards sight On rectifying this.224 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO . however. we commenced was about skin my I I fine trophy. 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. which I noticed wart-hog. while went on ahead my luck either with more lions or with any that might to game come my way. : 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. decided to Mahina other finish the operation. beaten out : had the patch of rushes thoroughly but as no traces of the lionesses could to be found. Once indeed felt it convinced all : saw one. my day's sport was not yet over. came running up shouting with joy and although I warned them to be careful. let When to try this half done. CHAP. as the two beaters lionesses were probably still close at hand. but no I I followed lions up the river almost crossed that I its more my it path. source. another shot quickly put the Still wounded animal out of pain. While . 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.

I caught sight of a graceful-looking antelope in the distance." and on reaching my prize I was delighted to that its horns were much above the average. closer saw that it was an My stalk was crowned with success. been shot by a friend. 'A SUCCESSFUL SNAPSHOT OF AN IMI'ALA JUST AFTER IT HAD BEEN SHOT. 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. Q .XX A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 225 rambling back through the trees. and on cautiously approaching impala. the beautiful animal being bagged without much trouble.

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

which was being carried by my man me just behind me. 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.XX A DAY ON THE ATHI RIVER 227 We both laughed heartily at the misunderstanding.

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

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

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

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

the absence of these two teeth constitutes a most distinct ive de nt f ying i i mark. at a said that this habit originated time tribe. ful The Masai it. 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. I and give it only for what it is worth but : whatever the reason for the custom. of course easily recognisable as such by the absence of the proper teeth. spat upon once plucked a handand then placed it very . Masai the extraction of the two front teeth from It is the lower jaw. 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.232 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO is CHAP. of grass.

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.XXI THE MASAI AND OTHER TRIBES . Another very common custom amongst them is . but nowadays like most other native races they have adopted our English fashion of shaking hands. Formerly the Masai used to spit in the face as a mark of great friendship. I MASAI GIRLS. he said. conscientiously to answer him in the affirmative. was done.

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

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. and the more she possesses the higher does she stand in the social scale. N'DEROBBO BOY. the Masai do not bury their dead. as they consider this custom to be prejudicial to the soil the bodies are simply carried some little .

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

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

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. Unlike the Masai. They also frequently carry a rudely made two-edged short sword in a sheath. with the exception of the Masai. the Wa Kikuyu have a .238 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CHAP. to On one occasion I and crawling on make my way into one of these kraals. which hide. they not nearly so good-looking. 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 the girls. is the bow and poisoned arrow. shield. who were quite graceful. but Like the latter. dwell the Wa Kikuyu. situated in the very thickest patches of forest that they can and their cattle kraals are especially strongly built and carefully hidden. 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. use the spear and . who are similar to the Masai in build. had abandoned the native undress costume In the for flowing white robes. district from Nairobi to the Kedong River. constantly game. though of a different shape their principal weapon. They live in little villages composed of beehive huts and always find. and in the Kenya Province. however.

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

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

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

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

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. Brock. in we had settled down One day not long our new camp. to bag a do so. and Shortly he suggested that we should go for a shooting expedition on the morrow. accordingly. I was friend Dr. enough was consequently most anxious after his arrival. as there be was a great deal of miscellaneous done. our headquarters remained established for after some little time. where. and that I should trot out for his benefit one of the local lions. 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. so far not been fortunate the goods- Now to Brock had lion. I could R 2 . and as just at the time by the Athi River.CHAPTER XXII LIFE HOW ROSHAN KHAN SAVED MY ON May work to 12 railhead reached the Athi River.

lithe and active. thinking that could make little difference whether in all he came with us or stayed behind things turned out. it (hunting) was This request sleepily granted. and warned the to "boys" who were early start. it camp. decided to make wanted a very knew that the most I likely place for some distance away. and just as dozing off to sleep. I and rushes which fringed the banks of the We therefore retired to rest early. and honest and pleasant-looking. . he had not accompanied all probability have ended disastrously He was a very dusky- coloured young Pathan about twenty years of age. one of was my Indian servants. slit Roshan Khan. As made the differ- ence us. CHAP. 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. looked care- fully to our rifles and ammunition. and possible to get there if by daybreak. in the world. 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. for if my shikar would in next day.244 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO off quite easily. 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. however. put a loaf of bread and a our haversacks. as lions lay I accompany us I as beaters to be ready before dawn.

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

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

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

and talking and gesticulating This gave at once me fifty a splendid chance for a shoulder shot at about yards' distance. he kept his head perfectly still. gazing It was only when the great mouth me. down The and dis- lioness appeared from sight instantly. In the twinkling of an eye three of them had disappeared after their lord in long. but at followers. looking. I stood.248 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO at him. and stared Although he was not seventy difficult yards away from me. and on looking over . CHAP. opened in an angry snarl that I could see plainly what he really was. at each other . 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 . low bounds. but the fourth stood broadside on. my who by this time were grouped together excitedly. 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. yet owing to the nature of the background especially as steadily at it was very to make him out. I ran all my might for a point of vantage from which might have a better chance of bagging him as he passed. 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. not at me. so after I knelt fired taking careful aim.

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

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

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

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

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

it now became my turn to do all I could to save him.254 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO him back on his CHAP. or because of my over-anxiety " to save my boy ". and saw the bullet raise the dust at the heels of a . and suddenly fled for his screaming and shrieking with all his might. he fugitive. but fired point blank at him from my instant hip. and again time I at thought that nothing on earth could save me. lightning. the pursuing lion. 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. Help came from an unexpected muzzle of my and this and unconscious quarter. had swung round rifle after . levelled my and fired but whether because of the speed at which he was going. I In far less time than takes to tell the story. He the was up again like rifle . it if this were possible. I missed him completely. delaying him for a second or so as before. gave chase instead to the yelling Roshan Khan having thus unwittingly rescued me from my perilous position. Beyond all question this movement saved me. natural instinct. as I was almost within his clutches. for just at this moment Roshan Khan seemed all at once to critical realise the danger of the situation. sight of something darting away from him diverted and following his the lion's attention from me. of the "303 bullet threw just as he haunches was in the act of springing. for the life.

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

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

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

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

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

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

his old bones cracking two and lions. xxiii A SUCCESSFUL LION HUNT I 261 the incline or not. he dropped down " I want to lead the Great Master to as he did so.CH. Naturally." he said. had approached I and was standing quietly beside me. forgot that I was tired and hungry .' 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. turned round and saw a lean and withered half-bred Masai. 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 . 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 hearing the usual salutation. at my feet grinned it. and contest that I became so interested in the between steam and friction did not notice that a visitor and gravity. in fact. to the last " fyrbali kidogo" question he was bound to answer . " they have just it. stood for a moment with the right hand held out on a level with his shoulder. however. I forgot everything that was not directly connected with the Even the old savage excitement of lion-hunting. returned his salutation. on his heels. and asked him what he wanted. the fingers extended and the palm turned towards me I all indicating that he came on a friendly visit.

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

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

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

I lay motionless in the grass and succeeded admirably. with the result that he rolled over and over. bullet fell short but the lion never moved. however. while The ruse waited. when. pretended not to have seen him. so felt A SUCCESSFUL LION the disappointed started off in a HUNT 265 Wa body Kamba. taking the mule with them. I rested the on . at this range. and advanced to within two We hundred yards or getting uneasy. 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. in I sure that he was off. the lion still remained quiet. 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.xxni four of up. Nor was for we had scarcely topped the next of the disappointed. and to make a half-circle round the animal. as he seemed to be it thought best to risk a shot even put up the 2ooyards sight and the . and again missed I fortunately. had come in pursuit we of him. 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. offering shot. for as the men moved round to so did the lion. I me at last a splendid shoulder took very careful. Mahina's back for the next shot. and . steady aim and fired. I I so. fifty Raising rifle the sight another yards. however.

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

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

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

when one knows he around is safe behind iron bars . but quite another to listen to in the vicinity him when he is ramping of one's fragile tent. 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. with a single blow he could tear to pieces. start. all this roaring was of good omen for the next day's sport. but as there was a great deal of work to be done before we could get to away.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. According to our over-night arrangement. and realised that we were indeed in the midst of a favourite haunt of the king of beasts. which Still. as he was convinced that I should get . It is one thing to hear a lion in captivity. we were up betimes in the morning.

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

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

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

By this time so I my '303 and dis- mounted. I I me " steadily all the called out to Spooner." and he whipped up the ponies a moment or two was beside me with the had seized at tonga. and on looking over my left shoulder to discover the reason.xxiv BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKAR lioness. shied badly at a hyaena. They looked they meant to dispute our passage. for they came slowly towards me for about ten yards or so and then lay down. which sprang up out of the grass almost from beneath his when suddenly he and quickly scampered off. We sit down comfortably to " " pot them. wondering whether he were worth a shot. I suddenly surprised us by turning and bolting T . watching time. I 273 wounded and was trotting was now riding " Blazeaway " along in advance of the tonga. 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. we once commenced a cautious advance on the crouching lions. I pulled up for a moment and sat watching the hyaena's ungainly bounds. feet Blazeaway trembling violently beneath me. evidently which I had seen the day before and which really we had as if come in search of. lions not I Suddenly I felt " " was startled to see two fine the pair more than a hundred yards away. Here are the lions told in and you about. when they off.

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

] A COLLECTION OF TROPHIES. ioner. Imam Din. as able to we go any distance in search of big game. We did all that was possible for him. and Spooner especially could not have looked to more tenderly but our great sorrow he sank gradually. July 19.XXIV BHOOTA'S LAST SHIKAR 281 to his ideas he had now but a poor chance of being allowed to enter Heaven. Bhoota. . The Author. and died on after a brother . 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.

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

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

while he kept the first watch. Ryall's carriage was accordingly detached from they at the train once made and shunted into a siding close to the station. and there being apparently no sign of the lion. where. did not stand perfectly level. so up their minds to remain there for the night and endeavour to shoot him. is When they reached Kimaa. but had to a pronounced one out side. which about two hundred told that and fifty miles from Mombasa. it owing list to the unfinished state ot the line. Afterwards they the all sat up on guard thing for some time saw was . Ryall persuaded his two friends to down.284 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO friends. the three friends went to look for but finding no traces of him whatever. In the afternoon the lion. CHAP. the only other berth being on the opposite side of the compartment and lower down. Parenti. they were their train the man-eater had been seen close to the station only a short time before arrived. The hour now growing lie late. Huebner occupied the high berth over the table on the one side of the carriage. This Ryall . 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. Huebner and Mr. but only noticeable they what they took to be two very bright and steady glowworms. they returned to the carriage for dinner. two Mr.

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

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

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

A. and were taken to Nairobi for burial. l. trap He was kept on view for several days. 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. xxv was instantaneous.MI'AI. His remains were found next in the I morning about a quarter of a mile away bush. and then shot. .288 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO CH.

" he retorted out hunting. engine at back to the north.CHAPTER XXVI WORK AT NAIROBI ALTHOUGH death Africa. " were standing on the the time. he with his " I We My dear Mac. I do nothing else when am . it is because you don't look out for them." " . Doctor was going home on leave in the course of a 2. McCulloch. facing each other. In particular." " I Rubbish. accompanied by Dr. I when few days. remember one very curious incident which happened early on the morning of June was travelling towards The Nairobi." 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. 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.

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

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

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

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

" as they only wished to continue to go. A in I started called to cold.294 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO wounded elephant. 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. as they themselves. but it was persuaded them that they had better remain faiihful in their own country. my . my " children and wherever I went." and its great distance from their native land . children ". 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. my "boy" Roshan Khan. succeeded in finishing CHAP. the off" him without further trouble. The ever- Mahina. my Wa Kikuyu came me. but they assured me that these were nothing to them.

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

I wanted very much to spend a day or two in the old place. . half wondering every moment if the ghosts of the two man-eaters would spring at me out of the bushes. deserved. but all the same I got out and prowled about as long as time would permit. but my companions were anxious to push on as quickly as possible to better hunting-grounds. to wake them out of their peaceful slumbers in order to point out to by the pale moonlight. Naturally I could not expect them. the strength and beauty of the Tsavo bridge but I fear this delicate as it little attention was scarcely appreciated them. TANA RIVER. at midnight. I took the trouble. however.THE GRAND FALLS. or . 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.

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

supplied with every modern comfort and luxury. We all got a fair amount of . we made our way back to the Eldama Ravine. 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. and the climate way. including a well and after a short trip to Lake laid-out race course . cool and bracing. started in earnest on our I cyame expedition. some 6.000 inhabitants. which to am glad to say proved be a most delightful and interesting one in every The country was lovely.

xxvn THE FINDING OF THE NEW ELAND bag- 299 sport. Our on party of including one lady left who rode and shot equally January 22. pala. was lucky enough to shoot a specimen of an entirely new race of eland. five. waterbuck. oryx. im- reedbuck. I but for the present must confine myself to a short account of how I ROAN ANTELOPE. straight. ostrich. etc. our including rhino. wildebeeste. roan antelope. 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 . hippo. hartebeeste.

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

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

women in and children every state of disease and crippledom came and besieged our camps. 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. to asked that there was any game about and was told some might be found a few miles . and no sooner had cleared the . begging for some of the magical dawa (medicine). . I returned their in afternoon.302 THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO " CHAP. call and the my my gun-bearer Juma. was a perfect belt afternoon. I used to do what I could. we pitched our river. the inhabitants of which seemed much astonished at our sudden appear- They were very neighbourhood. After we had climbed the Subu Ko Lultian and got a footing on the plateau. to the north of the kraal so I set out at once with Landaalu It I and Juma to try my luck. and visited our camp in swarms an hour or so after our arrival. friendly. however. man far trekked. 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. Riding my pony ance in their and accompanied by Landaalu as interpreter. and wide among the natives wherever we The consequence was that men. on the banks of Angarua where camp we found a big Masai kraal.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

APPENDIX .

.

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

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

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

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

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

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

and I have nothing but praise for him. and moved from station to station or left standing in a siding This is the cheapest and at the directions of the hunter." 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 . the best plan accommodation. These carriages. . can be attached to almost any train. cooking. "A FLYING VISIT IN A RICKSHAW TO KAMPALA. and bath case.APPENDIX 325 one of the jolliest and most willing fellows in the world. which have good sleeping.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

. Post Domli. WA KIKUYU WARRIORS. of Composed by Roshan Office itiistari. in Africa. left me. and I have related this actually occurred. and I shall miss him as long and now Roshan must roam about live. 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. native of the village of Chajanlat. hope that he as will the lions. in the thana of Domli. district of Jhelum. sad and regretful. son Kadur mistaii Bakhsh.338 APPENDIX I Oh! Roshan. 1899. the district of Jhelum. Dakhli. shooting action. Dated 29th January.

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