THE world is filled with the fame of Henry M. Stanley. What Cicero
was in eloquence, what Newton was in science, what Gladstone is
in statesmanship, this Stanley is in exploration and adventure.
For bold enterprise, for daring achievement, for unconquerable
perseverance, for singular command of men, for intrepid bravery in the
face of danger, he stands unrivalled among the heroes of modern times ;
and this is saying much considering that modern history boasts of such
names as Livingstone, Baker, Emin Bey, Cameron and Speke in Tropical
discoveries, and Franklin, Kane and Greeley in Arctic voyages and perils.
To this man the eyes of the world are drawn ; the Dark Continent has
yielded to him its mysteries, and when it shall be changed by the on-
ward march of civilization, the eulogies pronounced upon him will be
even more eloquent, and a large share of the credit of redeeming the
uncivilized wastes of Africa will be freely accorded to him.
Like many men who have distinguished themselves in every field of
enterprise and discovery, Stanley came from very humble life, and by
force of native genius, resolute will and self-sacrificing devotion to his
work, has gained the foremost rank among the noble band of explorers
whose thrilling achievements have an interest surpassing that of the most
marvelous tales of fiction.
Henry M. Stanley, although an American by residence and education,
was born at Denbigh, in Wales, in 1840. The names of his parents were
Rowland. They belonged to the very poor, yet, like many of the peas-
antry in old countries, they possessed some sterling qualities of mind
and heart and character. These have been reproduced in their son. who
has risen far above the surroundings of his childhood, and has become
celebrated by achievements which never could have been predicted from
the circumstances of his early life. As it was not possible for him to be
cared for and supported at home, at the early age of three years he was
placed in the almshouse at St. Asaph. Here it was expected he would
receive the care and training, both meagre indeed, which such an institu-
tion was able to furnish.
Seeking the New World.
Stanley remained at the almshouse until he was thirteen years old. It
seems probable that there is just here a space of several years which is
not accounted for, since the next we hear of him he was a teacher at
Mold, in Flintshire, endeavoring by this occupation to provide himself
with the means of taking a thorough course of stud)'' and completing
his educatfon. It appears, however, that he remained at Mold only one
year. By this time the restless spirit of the youth had begun to show
itself and he gave signs that his life would be one of adventure.
Having shipped at Liverpool as a cabin-boy on a vessel that was bound
for New Orleans, he thought he would try the New World and learn
what fortune might await him there. His youthful mind had been awak-
ened by glowing accounts of the open fields on this side of the Atlantic,
and the larger opportunities which awaited industrious and enterprising
Having arrived at New Orleans, he soon obtained employment with a
merchant named Stanley. This man was attracted by the frank, open-
hearted manner of the boy, and not only received him into his family,
ebut soon adopted him as his own. His friend and benefactor soon learned
?that his confidence had not been misplaced; that the impulsive Welsh
boy was capable of great things; that he was honest and competent; and
although at that time no prediction could have been made of the wonder-
ful career which lay before him, yet, even then, it could safely have been
said that in some capacity or other he was hkely to become distinguished!
above ordinary men. k-
Stanley's benefactor died intestate, or at least none of his property fell
to his adopted son. By the sudden bereavement which had overtakem
him, he was left alone in the world and brought face to face with the
startling fact that he was to be the architect of his own fortune; that he.
was to find his surest helper in himself; that he could accomplish in life
just what his own capacity and push and genius would enable him to
bring to pass. In his case, as in that of others, it is interesting to trace
the chain of circumstances which led him on to the great undertakings
which have since startled the world.
Stanley in California.
He was seized with a strong desire to visit the Pacific coast. It is
not worth while here to recount the adventures and hardships which he
underwent in carrying out his cherished wish to acquaint himself with
the western part of our country ; the old saying that " where there is a
•will there is a way," was fully illustrated in this instance. For a time he
roamed over different parts of California; gazed upon the romantic
scenes which that country affords ; made the acquaintance of miners as
they sat around their camp-fires ; listened to the tales of their exploits
wondered at the magnificent products of nature, the lofty trees of the
Sierras and the sublime scenery of the Yosemite Valley, and became
familiar with the character of the bold men who were attracted to this
region by the fascinating tales which had been related of the discovery
During this time he was not only familiarizing himself with the natural
scenes which had for him a strong fascination, but he was studying
human nature, learning the ways of men, and, by his genial qualities and
ready adaptation to circumstances, making friends wherever he went.
Scarcely any school could .have been better for him at this time. The
hardy life that he led developed his physical strength and made him a
man of nerve and iron. His power of endurance already showed itself.
Few could travel farther or endure more fatigue than he. If any little
enterprise was planned which required a brave spirit, Stanley was the
young man who was found equal to the occasion. He was a brave,
strong character ; just the one to cross seas, climb mountains, wade
rivers, endure hardships, explore continents.
Carrying the Knapsack and Rifle.
Returning from California, it was but natural that, as he had previously
resided in the South, he should identify himself with the Confederate
Army. To one like him there was something captivating about the Hfe
of a soldier ; he was not in the habit of turning back from the face of
danger. His life hitherto had prepared him for just those exploits which
are connected with bold military achievements. And although his con-
nection with the Confederate Army was brief, it was evident that he had
the material in him for a good soldier; in fact, it was while carrying out
-one of his adventurous projects that he was captured by the Union
troops and was made prisoner of war.
He was confined on board the iron-clad Ticonderoga, and here again
his manly bearing and frank, genial manner won him friends. The com-
mander of the vessel was willing to release him on condition that he
should join the United States Navy, This he consented to do, although
there was not much about the life of a sailor that attracted him. By this
voluntary act he separated himself from the Confederate Army, and be-
came an ally of the Federal forces. He remained, doing such service as
was required of him, until the close of the war. Suddenly his occupa-
tion was gone, and again he seemed to be thrown upon the world. This
fact had no discouragements for him; he took it as a matter of coursfe.
It was not in the nature of things that so bright and spirited a young
man should long remain idle. Having had a taste of the excitement of
military campaigns, he conceived the bold project of crossing the Atlan-
tic, and, if opportunity offered, continuing his military career.
Off to tlie Battle-field.
There was trouble in Turkey at this time on account of the uprising
of the Cretans, who, having borne their oppression until endurance
-ceased to be a virtue, resolved to throw off the yoke under which they
had suffered. It was but natural that Stanley should feel sympathy for
any tribe or nation struggling for independence, and at once he resolved
to ally himself with the Cretans and take again the chances of war.
At this time he formed a connection which has influenced his career
ever since, and which was the most important that he ever entered into.
As he was going East, and would be an eye-witness of the stirring scenes
transpiring in the Orient, he secured the position of correspondent for
the New York Herald, and immediately, in company with two Ameri-
cans, set sail for the Island of Crete. The old saying that " distance
lends enchantment to the view" was fully illustrated in his case, for after
h& had arrived upon the ground and had become acquainted with the
movement that was in progress for securing the independence of Crete,
he became thoroughly disgusted with the leaders of the rebellion, and
entirely changed his opinion as to the merits of the case. He recalled
at once his resolve and determined that he would not identify himself with.
the malcontents whose cause, after he had investigated it, did not appeal
to his sympathies.
Again he was a " free lance" and was at liberty to undertake any labor
or occupation that presented itself Fortunately he had received from
New York full permission to go wherever he pleased. He could travel
in any direction, gain a knowledge of what was transpiring in other
countries, describe the active scenes that were taking place, and send
his letters to the journal which was now employing him, with the certainty
that they would be read with interest. Americans are quick in obtaining
information from other parts of the world, and their eagerness for it is
exhibited by the fact that so many of our enterprising journals have
their correspondents in other countries; The education of our people
peculiarly fits them for an active interest in whatever of importance is
going on throughout the world,
Robbed by Brigands.
Stanley and his friends soon met with an adventure which shows the
dangers through which they passed and the kind of people they encoun-
tered. A party of Turkish brigands made an attack upon them and robbed
them of all their money and extra clothing. This is not an unusual
occurrence in many parts of the East, where travellers run continuous
risks and are constantly exposed to the marauding disposition of reckless
robbers and brigands. At this time Mr. Morris was oiir United States
Minister at Constantinople, and the case was presented to him ; he im-
mediately interested himself in behalf of Stanley and his friends and
brought the matter to the attention of the Turkish officials. Mr. Morris
was extremely helpful to his fellow Americans, and having loaned them
whatever was needful, they continued their wanderings. It will be under-
stood that during this time letters were forwarded to the New York
Herald, containing graphic descriptions of eastern life and manners.
Having accomplished what he desired in this direction, Stanley set his face
toward England and once again arrived in the land of his birth, where
the scenes of his early boyhood were laid.
It is one of the characteristics of a noble nature that it does not forget
its early struggles and experiences. The remembrance of poverty has no
pain for the man who has risen above it and made himself the master of
circumstances. It is a tribute to Mr. Stanley's worth that he did not for-
get the old almshouse, where his early days were spent. One of the first
things he did after arriving in England was to visit this very place, there
recalling scenes through which he had passed years before.
All accounts agree that this visit was very interesting ; it was so to
the one who was making it and also to those who were receiving it. The
children whom Stanley knew as inmates of this place had grown up and
most of them had gone out into the world, but " the poor ye have always
with you," and there were other little ones, with wan faces, whose sad
life appealed to the heart of the great traveller.
Stanley resolved to give these little people a right good dinner, and we
may be sure the intention was received with as much enthusiasm on the
part of those who were to partake of the dinner as it was formed on the
the part of the benefactor.
The Children's Dinner at the Poorhouse.
On this occasion Stanley appeared in his true light, the nature of the
man showing itself That nature is one of essential kindness, as has
been shown through all his explorations, becoming severe and haughty
only for effect and when such, exhibition of sternness is absolutely
required. Of course the little people at the poorhouse of St. Asaph
were delighted ; their efficiency in disposing of that dinner was both
conspicuous and admirable, and after they had been fed and filled, there
was another treat in store for them. They were to have a talk from the
one who had made them so happy, and were to hear a brief account of
some of his travels and wanderings. Stanley addressed them in plain,
simple, child's language, showing at once his adaptation to all classes and
conditions of people. The little folks were delighted to hear his stories ;
more than this, they received from him words of instruction and encour-
agement, which, if remembered and heeded, must have made them by
this time strong men and women.
We next find Stanley back again in the United States. This was in
the year 1867 ; he was then but little more than twenty-five years of age,
but he had passed through more than most men do in a long lifetime ;
had already seen more of the world than many well-known travellers ;
had been in more dangers than many who have written strange tales of
their adventures ; and had obtained a general knowledge of the world
at large, which is some considerable part of the capital of every well-
furnished man. James Gordon Bennett, the proprietor of the New York
Herald, gave him a hearty reception, and with his shrewd eye saw at
once the prize he had obtained and the kind of man with whom he had
About this time the King of Abyssinia, who was one of the subjects
of Her Majesty, Queen Victoria, became very restless, thought he was
entitled to the management of his own affairs, and created such a dis-
turbance and mutiny against the formidable powers of Britain that an
?expedition was sent out to straighten his tangled affairs and bring him
into becoming submission. A spirit of adventure always gathers about
such an expedition as this. Not only among the regular forces is there
sometimes an eagerness for the new country and the excitement of the
?campaign, but there are always followers who have business of one kind
or another, and who are captivated with the opportunities afforded to
gratify their roving dispositions. The war correspondent may not always
be of this description, but he must be a man of peculiar characteristics.
Graphic Description of Abyssinian Warfare.
It is scarcely necessary to say that as Abyssinia was the central point
•of interest at this time, Stanley received permission to accompany the
English forces and give detailed accounts of their operations. His letters
attracted wide attention and were read with eager interest. While not
the letters of a highly educated man, they were the productions of one
ivho was peculiarly fitted for his work, and who could seize upon just
those points which were of interest to the general public, and who could
•express them in language at once graphic and plain, and could thus fas-
cinate a wide circle of readers.
Stanley was not disheartened by any difficulties; in short, he was
rather looking for some opportunity to perform achievements such as
other men would not be likely to undertake, and such as would give him
reputation and renown. When the last battle was fought in this Abys-
sinian campaign, official dispatches, of course, were sent to London.
Stanley's messages outstripped all official dispatches and brought the first
news of the victory to the ears of the British people. When inquiries
were made in London as to the progress of the battle, they were answered
by the government officials with the statement that it was not yet over.
Suddenly Stanley's dispatches arrived, with the statement that the battle
was over, and at a later period this announcement was officially confirmed.
This of itself was enough to give Stanley fame as a newspaper corre-
spondent. It was not a little humiliating to those ponderous official
T)odies, which move slowly, to learn that a live Yankee had outstripped
them and got ahead of all their calculations. Not only was he expert in
getting the news ahead, but his description of this campaign is universally
?considered as the very best and most accurate that has ever been written.
Visit to Spain.
The next year, 1868, found Stanley again in the United States, not
long to remain, however. A civil war was raging at this time in Spain.
Very soon we find Stanley again in Europe, actually taking his position
upon the battle-fields to be a spectator of the conflicts, then relating withi
minuteness what had taken place, and giving a graphic description of the
scenes which he_ had witnessed. His letters at this time gave a very-
accurate idea of Spanish affairs. He not only saw the events, but he saw
the forces which had produced them. For a long time there had been
political strife in Spain; the position of the contending parties, the ideas
that were clamoring for the ascendant, all this was given as with a photo-
graphic lens by the brilliant correspondent, and was made known to the
world at large. The same promptness and energy which had previously
distinguished him came out vividly in his life in Spain. Just here we
have one of the most striking chapters in the career of the great explorer.
"What Has Become of Livingstone?"
It must be evident by this time to the reader that Stanley was at home
everywhere. He did not stop to consider climate, country, language or
hardships when he was to undertake one of his daring enterprises. His
first plan had been to remain in Spain for a long period of time, content-
ing himself to sojourn in that land which, for Americans, has compara-
tively few attractions. This plan, however, was suddenly abandoned.
There was another and more famous field for his spirit of adventure.
David Livingstone was in Africa. This man, whose name has gone into
all the earth, was the marvel of his time, possessing, and in an equally
eminent degree, many of those characteristics which belong to the hero
whose early life we are relating. It was a bold conception on the part
of Livingstone to enter the wilds of the Dark Continent, explore the
mysteries that had puzzled the world for ages, learn the character of the
African tribes, obtain a knowledge of the geography of that vast continent,
and thereby prepare the way for commerce and for those missionaiy
labors which were to bring civilization to the land that had long been
lying in darkness.
Livingstone had long been absent and the curiosity which was awak-
ened concerning his fate amounted even to anxiety. He had many per-
sonal friends in England and Scotland who had taken great interest in
his travels, and who were eager now to obtain some information con-
cerning him. The probabilities of his fate were freely discussed in news-
papers and journals, and among many the opinion prevailed that the
great discoverer would never return to his native land alive. The ques-
tion, " What has become of Livingstone ?" was agitating both hemis-
pheres ; a singular instance of the interest which, by forces of circum-
stances, will sometimes gather around a single great character.
James Gordon Bennett was just the one to solve the all-perplexing
question. Was Livingstone alive ? If alive, in what part of Africa was
he located? Or was he dead? Could any intelligence of him be
obtained? Where was the bold spirit who would venture out into that
wild and threatening region and answer the questions which were so
freely raised concerning this one man? It was believed that if the great
explorer was alive, his trail could be followed, and, although it would
cost an almost superhuman effort, he could be found. To find him
would be sufficient glory for any one man, and the journal that should
record such an achievement as this would stand in the front rank of the
great newspapers of America and England. Mr. Bennett resolved to
make the trial, and, of course, Henry M. Stanley was the one selected
for this daring expedition. Mr. Bennett was in Paris and suddenly
summoned Mr. Stanley from Spain. This unexpected recall somewhat
astonished Stanley, yet there was an intimation in his mind that some
bold undertaking was planned, and with high hopes he immediately
made the journey to Paris. He arrived late at night, but would not
sleep until after an interview with the one who had summoned him.
For a long time the project was discussed, and before that first interview
was concluded, it appeared to both to be a practicable scheme to under-
take the discovery of Livingstone.
Offers of Help Rejected.
It came to the ears of the Royal Geographical Society of London that
an attempt was to be piade to obtain information concerning the lost
explorer. This Society, which has had a long and honorable career and
has done much towards opening parts of the world that had hitherto
been sealed against all the advances of civilization, offered to bear a part
of the expenses that would be incurred in sending Mr. Stanley into
the continent of Africa. Mr. Bennett, however, was willing to undertake
the matter alone, bear all the expenses and keep himself free from any
dictation on the part of those who would have all sorts of opinions to
express and plans to propose, and would think that these should be
regarded because they were bearing a part of the expenses. The decis-
ion was a wise one, and Stanley was left perfectly free to follow out his
own ideas, go where he wished, remain as long as he pleased, only agree-
ing to do his utmost to solve the problem which all the nations of
Christendom had on hand.
The account given by Stanley himself of the commission received
from Mr. Bennett is somewhat amusing. It is as follows: On the
sixteenth day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight
hundred and sixty-nine, I was in Madrid, fresh from the carnage at
Valencia. At lo a.m. I received a telegram. It read, "Come to Paris
on important business." The telegram was from Mr. James Gordon
Bennett, Jr., the young manager of the New York Herald.
Sudden Start for Paris.
Down came my pictures from the walls of my apartments on the
second floor ; into my trunks went my books and souvenirs, my clothes
were hastily collected, some half washed, some from the clothes-line half
dry, and after a couple of hours hasty hard work my portmanteaus were
strapped up and labelled "Paris."
At 3 P.M. I was on my way, and being obliged to stop at Bayonne a
few hours, did not arrive at Paris until the following night. I went straight
to the "Grand Hotel," and knocked at the door of Mr. Bennett's room.
"Come in," I heard a voice say.
Entering, I found Mr. Bennett in bed.
"Who are you?" he asked.
"My name is Stanley," I answered.
"Ah, yes! sit down; I have important business on hand for you."
After throwing over his shoulders his robe-de-chambre, Mr. Bennett
asked, " Where do you think Livingstone is ?"
"I really do not know, sir."
"Do you think he is alive?"
"He may be, and he may not," I answered.
"Well, I think he is alive, and that he can be found, and I am going to
send you. to find him."
"What !" said I," do you really think I can find Dr. Livingstone?
Do you mean me to go to Central Africa?"
"Yes; I mean that you shall go, and find him wherever you may hear
that he is, and to get what news you can of him, and perhaps " — deliver-
ing himself thoughtfully and deliberately — " the old man may be in want :
— take enough with you to help him should he require it. Of course
you will act according to your own plans, and do what you think best
— BUT FIND Livingstone!"
Said I, wondering at the cool order of sending one to Central Africa
to search for a man whom I, in common with almost all other men, be-
lieved to be dead, " Have you considered seriously the great expense you
are likely to incur on' account of this Httle journey?"
"What will it cost?" he asked abruptly.
" Burton and Speke's journey to Central Africa cost between ;3,ooo
and 5,000, and I fear it cannot be done under 2,500."
" Well, I will tell you what you will do. Draw a thousand pounds
now, and when you have gone through that, draw another thousand, and
when that is spent draw another thousand, and when you have finished
that, draw another thousand, and so on ; but, find Livingstone."
Surprised but not confused at the order — for I knew that Mr. Bennett
when once he had made up his mind was not easily drawn aside from his
purpose — I yet thought, seeing it was such a gigantic scheme, that he
had not quite considered in his own mind the pros and cons of the case ;
I said, " I have heard that should your father die you would sell the
Herald and retire from business."
"Whoever told you that is wrong, for there is not money enough in
New York city to buy the New York Herald. My father has made it a great
paper, but I mean to make it greater. I mean that it shall be a newspa-
per in the true sehse of the word. I mean that it shall publish whatever
fnews will be interesting to the world at no matter what cost."
"After that," said I, " I have nothing more to say. Do you mean me
to go straight to Africa to search for Dr. Livingstone ?"
" No ! I wish you to go to the inauguration of the Suez Ganal first,
and then proceed up the Nile. I hear Baker is about starting for Upper
Egypt. Find out what you can about his expedition, and as you go up
describe as well as possible whatever is interesting for tourists ; and then
write up a guide — a practical one — for Lower Egypt ; tell us about what-
ever is worth seeing and how to see it.
A Long Journey Planned.
"Then you might as well go to Jerusalem ; I hear Captain Warren is
making some interesting discoveries there. Then visit Constantinople,
and find out about that trouble between the Khedive and the Sultan.
"Then — let me see — you might as well visit the Crimea and those old
battle-grounds. Then go across the Caucasus to the Caspian Sea ; I
hear there is a Russian expedition bound for Khiva, From thence you
may get through Persia to India ; you could write an interesting letter
"Bagdad will be close on your way to India ; suppose you go there,
and write up something about the Euphrates Valley Railway. Then,
when you have come to India, you can go after Livingstone. Probably
you will hear by that time that Livingstone is on his way to Zanzibar;
.but if not, go into the interior and find him. If alive, get what news of
this discoveries you can ; and if you find he is dead, bring all possible
proofs of his being dead. That is all. Good-night, and God be with
"Good-night, sir," I said ; " what it is in the power of human nature
lo do I will do ; and on such an errand as I go upon, God will be
The foregoing is Mr. Stanley's interesting account of the manner in
which he received one of the most important and difficult commissions
ever given to mortal man. The whole story shows the bold, quick,
impulsive nature of men who move the world. To think, is to decide ;
to decide, is to act; to act, is to achieve.
Without anticipating those striking experiences through which Stan-
ley has to pass in the narrative we have before us, suffice it to say that
in due time he arrived in Africa. Having started from Zanzibar with an
expedition, the formation of which gave him an opportunity to show his
perseverance and tact, he began his long search. Difficulties that would
have appalled other men at the outset were as nothing to him; obstacles
were cast aside as by a faith that moves mountains into the sea.
Threatening dangers did not turn him from his lofty purpose. On he
went, across plains, down through valleys, through tangled jungles, over
-almost impassable rivers, displaying everywhere and always the most
wonderful heroism and endurance, until the world was startled at his
discovery and will evermore applaud his magnificent achievements.
Wild and Barbarous Country.
No one who has never explored the wilds of Africa can understand
the nature of the undertaking which Stanley had before him. In our
land we can travel into almost every section by railways, by stage
coaches, or by steamboats. None of these facilities for travelling were
to be found in Africa, at least in that part of it that Stanley was to visit.
Some of these means of transit could be created, but they were not in
existence, and to the explorer was left the double work not merely of
conducting the expedition, but also of preparing the way for it.
Thrilling tales have been told of the dangers attending all journeys in
the Dark Continent. Every book which has been written is alive with
these tales of adventure. No work has ever been published on Africa
which does not read more like a romance than reality. We look upon
the map, we see the location of the various provinces, we trace the great
rivers winding their way towards the ocean, and, not understanding the
true character of the country, it may seem to us to be a simple thing to
pass from one point to another. It is much easier to travel by map than
in any other way.
When Livingstone went to Africa he could go but a little way inland
from the coast without finding his progress barred. While it was left to
Stanley to follow in his track, there was sometimes a difficulty in learning
the path which Livingstone had taken, and it was also very difficult for
a man unused to African exploration to complete so long a journey
without any previous experience. These things render Stanley's final
success all the more wonderful, and it is not surprising that all readers
become intensely interested in the story of the man and his exploits.
Many have been the failures on the part of other explorers, while those
who have gone out like Gordon Gumming, merely for the purpose of
sport, have learned the dangers which lie in every step of progress
through the jungles of Africa. It requires a man of a venturesome
spirit, a strong nerve, an indomitable will, and a ready disposition to-
make all manner of sacrifices, to do what has been done in modern times
toward opening the Tropics to the advance of civilization. It will be
seen by the following pages what Stanley has accomplished, and the
wonder is that one man should have succeeded not only in finding
Livingstone but also in crossing the continent from sea to sea.
The manner in which the world has followed the travels of Mr. Stanley
would indicate a personal interest in him and his welfare. He becomes
better known than most men whom we do not see, and we are compelled
to enter heartily into sympathy with his plans, his trials, his victories.
This is the mysterious influence which one strong character has over
others. We become absorbed in the marvelous story of this man's ad-
ventures. We follow him eagerly step by step. We are amazed at each
new revelation, and inquire what greater achievement is to follow. Henry
M. Stanley is one of the great heroes of modern times.
Next in ERBzine 6099_2
THRILLING ADVENTURES IN AFRICA