African Explorer DoctorDavid Livingstone Writes To Friends, 1857

David Livingston was a Scottish missionary and one of the greatest European explorers of Africa, whose opening up of the interior of the continent contributed to the "Scramble for Africa." He became convinced of his mission to reach new people in the interior of Africa and introduce them to Christanity, as well as freeing them from slavery. In 1855, after several expeditions to Africa, Livingston discovered a sepectacular waterfall which he named "Victoria Falls." He reached the mouth of the Zambezi on the Indian Ocean in May 1856, becoming the first European to cross the width of southern Africa. Returning to Britain, where he was now a national hero, Livingston did many speaking tours and published his best-selling "Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa." It was during his book tour that he wrote this letter from Ireland to a friend dated August 29, 1857. The following year Livingston left for Africa again  and for the next five years carried out official explorations of eastern and central Africa for the British government.

Dublin 29th August 1857  My Dear Friend, Thanks for your kind attention to my relics. I find Sir Duncan & Lady Macgregor  all you said. Their son whom I only met this morning knew to be the little hero of the Kent East India men is a worthy son of such parents. He gave a paper on the ship’s program from the beginning which was highly applauded.  I come on Monday mid-day and evening – Alas! I never say that word so must write it ocasionally  though there is no use for it here as if I am __?__ in for it and must make the best of it. Wish I could say a word or two for Christ which would come in naturally and be useful. With kindest salutations from, David Livingston  (Signed) I have not met the lady you spoke of, that I know of, but meet a number at the archbishop’s this evening. His daughters re devoted Christians and very clever.

Statue of Dr. David Livingston at Livingston Falls, Zimbabwe