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Lieutenant Cameron Vanity Fair Print 1876


He Walked Across Africa

Royal Geographical Society's Founder's Gold Medal

Royal Geographical Society’s Founder’s Gold Medal



Lieutenant Cameron Vanity Fair Print 1876

Original Vanity Fair Print Lithograph of Lieutenant Verney Lovett Cameron with the caption at the bottom of the print: He Walked Across Africa

Published: 15-Jul-1876 Signed by: SPY, Leslie Ward . Dimensions approximately 26cm x 38cm.

He was born at Radipole, near Weymouth, Dorset. He entered the Royal Navy in 1857, served in the Abyssinian campaign of 1868, and was employed for a considerable time in the suppression of the East African slave trade. The experience thus obtained led to his being selected to command an expedition sent by the Royal Geographical Society in 1873, to assist Dr Livingstone. He was also instructed to make independent explorations, guided by Livingstone’s advice. Soon after the departure of the expedition from Zanzibar, Chuma and Susi were met bearing the dead body of the reverend doctor. Cameron’s two European companions, Dr. William Edward Dillon, surgeon in the Royal Navy, and Lieutenant Cecil Murphy of the Royal Artillery, turned back with the task of returning Livingstone’s body to the coast. Cameron continued his march and reached Ujiji, on Lake Tanganyika, in February 1874, where he found and sent to England Livingstone’s papers. Cameron spent some time determining the true form of the south part of the lake, and solved the question of its outlet by the discovery of the Lukuga River. From Tanganyika he struck westward to Nyangwe, the Arab town on the Lualaba previously visited by Livingstone. This river Cameron rightly believed to be the main stream of the Congo, and he endeavoured to procure canoes to follow it down.:Vol. Two,75 In this he was unsuccessful, owing to his refusal to countenance slavery, and he therefore turned south-west. After tracing the Congo-Zambezi watershed for hundreds of miles he reached Bihe and finally arrived at the coast on 28 November 1875, being the first European to cross equatorial Africa from sea to sea. He was awarded the Royal Geographical Society’s Founder’s Gold Medal in 1876. His travels, which were published in 1877 under the title Across Africa, contain valuable suggestions for the opening up of the continent, including the utilization of the great lakes as a Cape to Cairo Road connection. In recognition of his work he was promoted to the rank of Commander.

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