Henry M. Stanley
Publisher: Sampson Lowe, Marston, Searle and Rivington
Publication Date: 1885
Book Condition: Very Good
Edition: 1stBest edition, xxvii, 528; x, 483, Index, 2 volumes in contemporary half brown morocco (spines with gilt rules in compartments with raised bands), 2 frontispieces, 42 engraved plates, numerous text woodcuts, and five folding coloured maps (all in very good condition). Bindings showing some marginal wear, spines slightly faded, top edges gilt, beautiful marbled endpapers and map pockets. Sir Henry Morton Stanley (1841 1904) was a journalist and explorer renowned for his adventures in Africa. After emigrating to America in 1859, Stanley worked as a journalist for the New York Herald. In 1869 he was instructed to undertake an expedition to find the missionary David Livingstone, and the success of this mission brought him public recognition and financial success. These volumes, first published in 1885, provide an account of Stanley's exploration of the Congo river in the service of Leopold II of Belgium between 1879 and 1884. The sequel to Stanley's "Through the Dark Continent". Deriving from Stanley's personal journal, the books describe the difficulties he faced as he founded permanent trading stations, the founding of Leopoldville, the discovery of Lake Leopold and his negotiations with indigenous leaders, together with his plans for the commercial exploitation of Africa. Stanley's controversial methods to achieve this aim, which led to his modern reputation as a racist and imperialist, are revealed. Also chapters on slave kidnappers and climate. His book The Congo and the Founding of its Free State promoted what he called the 'gospel of enterprise', emphasizing both the commercial potential of the region and the hard labour necessary to exploit it. He revelled in the name Bula Matari ['Breaker of Rocks' from his road-building activities] portraying his aim in the Congo as nothing less than the conquest of nature The establishment of the Congo Free State, a territory of nearly 1 million square miles which Stanley had done much to secure, was one of the most significant events in the history of the so-called 'scramble for Africa'. Subsequent events were to show that Leopold's ambitions were not quite so philanthropic as Stanley represented them. But he denied to the last any responsibility for the atrocities that were to follow" (ODNB). Howgego IV S59. Formerly owned by and with engraved bookplates on front endpapers of the Honourable Geoffrey Lambton (13 September 1887 1 September 1914). Through his sister Lilian, he was an uncle of future Prime Minister Sir Alec Douglas-Home. Son of Frederick William Lambton, 4th Earl of Durham (19 June 1855 31 January 1929) a British peer, a Liberal (and later Liberal Unionist) politician. A very handsome and bright set of this elusive first edition, very well preserved indeed. Unusually pleasing set of these heavy, well produced books with direct association to the family of a senior peer of the realm.