Return to Unyanyembe with Dr. Livingstone

Henry Stanley

New York Herald/July 15, 1872


Kwihara, Unyanyembe

February 21, 1872

After spending Christmas at Ujiji Dr. Livingstone, escorted by the NEW YORK HERALD Expedition, composed of forty Wanguana soldiers, well armed, left for Unyanyembe on the 26th of December, 1871.

In order to arrive safely, untroubled by wars and avaricious tribes, we sketched out a road to Unyanyembe, thus:

Seven days by water south to Urimba.

Ten days across the uninhabited forests of Kawendi.

Twenty days through Unkonongo, direct east.

Twelve days north through Unkonongo.

Thence five days into Unyanyembe, where we arrived without adventure of any kind, except killing zebras, buffaloes and giraffes, after fifty-four days’ travel.

The expedition suffered considerably from famine, and your correspondent from fever, but these are incidental to the march in this country.

The Doctor tramped it on foot like a man of iron. On arrival at Unyanyembe I found that the Englishman, Shaw, whom I had turned back as useless, had about a month after his return succumbed to the climate of the interior and had died, as well as two Wanguana of the expedition who had been left behind sick. Thus during less than twelve months William Lawrence Farquhar, of Leith, Scotland, and John William Shaw, of London, England, the two white men I had engaged to assist me, had died; also eight baggage carriers and eight soldiers of the expedition had died.

I was bold enough to advise the Doctor to permit the expedition to escort him to Unyanyembe, through the country it was made acquainted with while going to Ujiji, for the reason that were he to sit down at Ujiji until Mirambo was disposed of he might remain a year there, a prey to high expectations, ending always in bitter disappointment. I told him, as the Arabs of Unyanyembe were not equal to the task of conquering Mirambo, that it were better he should accompany the HERALD expedition to Unyanyembe, and there take possession of the last lot of goods brought to him by a caravan which left the seacoast simultaneously with our expedition.

The Doctor consented, and thus it was that he came so far back as Unyanyembe.

(Source: “Stanley’s Despatches to the New York Herald,”