The Man-Eaters Of Tsavo And Other East African Adventures By Lieut Col. J. H. Patterson, D.S.O.






 - THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO AND Other East African Adventures

BY Lieut. Col. J. H. Patterson, D.S.O.

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THE MAN-EATERS OF TSAVO AND Other East African Adventures

BY Lieut.

Col. J. H. Patterson, D.S.O.

WITH A FOREWORD BY FREDERICK COURTENEY SELOUS

PREFACE

It is with feelings of the greatest diffidence that I place the following pages before the public; but those of my friends who happen to have heard of my rather unique experiences in the wilds have so often urged me to write an account of my adventures, that after much hesitation I at last determined to do so.

I have no doubt that many of my readers, who have perhaps never been very far away from civilisation, will be inclined to think that some of the incidents are exaggerated. I can only assure them that I have toned down the facts rather than otherwise, and have endeavoured to write a perfectly plain and straightforward account of things as they actually happened.

It must be remembered that at the time these events occurred, the conditions prevailing in British East Africa were very different from what they are to-day. The railway, which has modernised the aspect of the place and brought civilisation in its train, was then only in process of construction, and the country through which it was being built was still in its primitive savage state, as indeed, away from the railway, it still is.

If this simple account of two years' work and play in the wilds should prove of any interest, or help even in a small way to call attention to the beautiful and valuable country which we possess on the Equator, I shall feel more than compensated for the trouble I have taken in writing it.

I am much indebted to the Hon. Mrs. Cyril Ward, Sir Guilford Molesworth, K.C.I.E., Mr. T.J. Spooner and Mr C. Rawson for their kindness in allowing me to reproduce photographs taken by them. My warmest thanks are also due to that veteran pioneer of Africa, Mr. F.C. Selous, for giving my little book so kindly an introduction to the public as is provided by the "Foreword" which he has been good enough to write.

J.H.P. August, 1907.

FOREWORD

It was some seven or eight years ago that I first read, in the pages of The Field newspaper, a brief account written by Col. J.H. Patterson, then an engineer engaged on the construction of the Uganda Railway, of the Tsavo man-eating lions.

My own long experience of African hunting told me at once that every word in this thrilling narrative was absolutely true. Nay more: I knew that the author had told his story in a most modest manner, laying but little stress on the dangers he had run when sitting up at nights to try and compass the death of the terrible man-eaters, especially on that one occasion when whilst watching from a very light scaffolding, supported only by four rickety poles, he was himself stalked by one of the dread beasts. Fortunately he did not lose his nerve, and succeeded in shooting the lion, just when it was on the point of springing upon him.

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