Nathan C. Thompson
Feb 28, 2012
Dr. W. Moody
Henry Morton Stanley
Born John Rowlands in Wales, or as those of his time knew him as Henry Morton Stanley; was the illegitimate son of John Rowlands and Elizabeth Parry. He grew up partly in the charge of reluctant relatives, partly in St. Asaph Workhouse. After his interlude of dependence on relatives, he sailed from Liverpool as a cabin boy, landing at New Orleans in 1859. There Rowlands was befriended by a merchant, Henry Hope Stanley, whose first and last names the boy adopted in an apparent effort to make a fresh start in life with a new identity; "Morton" was added later. For some years Stanley led a roving life; a soldier in the American Civil War, a seaman on merchant ships and in the U.S. Navy, a journalist in the early days of frontier expansion. In 1867 Stanley offered his services to James Gordon Bennett of the New York Herald as a special correspondent with the British expeditionary force sent against Tewodros II of Ethiopia, and Stanley was the first to report the fall of Magdala in 1868. An assignment to report the Spanish Civil War followed, and in 1869 he received instructions to undertake a roving commission in the Middle East, which was to include the relief of Dr. David Livingstone, of whom little had been heard since his departure for Africa in 1866 to search for the source of the Nile. On Jan. 6, 1871, Stanley reached Zanzibar, the starting point for expeditions to the interior, and, intent on a scoop, left on March 21 without disclosing his intentions. His secretive conduct caused much offense to the authorities, especially to Sir John Kirk, the British consul, who had been having difficulty in making contact with Livingstone. Leading a well-equipped caravan and backed by American money, Stanley forced his way through country disturbed by fighting and stricken by sickness to Ujiji on Lake Tanganyika, Livingstone's last known port of call. There he found the old hero, ill and...
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