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protection; and I did not fail to represent to them that, if the English should succeed in opening these great highroads of the interior for peaceful intercourse, it would be highly advantageous even for themselves, as they would thus be enabled to obtain those articles which they were in want of from the regions of Western Africa, such as kola nuts and gold, with much less expense and greater security; and they were thus induced to endeavour to derive a profit even from this my enterprise. The sheikh, who had formed the intention of undertaking a journey to Mekka, wanted me to procure for him some gold in Timbúktu ; but, uncertain as were my prospects, and difficult as would be my situation, I could not guarantee such a result, which my character as a messenger of the British Government would scarcely allow. The sheikh sent me two very fine camels as a present, which stood the fatigue of the journey marvellously, one of them only succumbing on my return journey, three days from Kúkawa, when, seeing that it was unable to proceed, I gave it as a present to a native mållem. Having finished my letters, I fixed my departure for the 25th of Noveinber, without waiting any longer for the caravan of the Arabs, which was soon to leave for Zinder, and which, though it held out the prospect of a little more security, would have exposed me to a great deal of inconvenience and delay.
Thursday, It was half-past ten in the morning November 25th,
when I left the town of Kúkawa, which
for upwards of twenty months I had regarded as my head quarters, and as a place upon which, in any emergency, I might safely fall back upon ; for although I even then expected that I should be obliged to return to this place once more, and even of my own free will made my plans accordingly, yet I was convinced that, in the course of my proceedings, I should not be able to derive any further aid from the friendship and protection of the sheikh of Bórnu, and I likewise fully understood that circumstances might oblige me to make my return by the western coast. For I never formed such a scheme voluntarily, as I regarded it of much greater importance for the government in whose service I had the honour to be employed, to survey the course of the great river from Timbúktu downwards, than to attempt, if I should have succeeded in reaching that place, to come out on the other side of the continent, while I was fully aware that, even under the most favourable circumstances, in going, I should be unable to keep along the river, on account of its being entirely in the hands of the lawless tribes of Tawárek, whom I should not be able to pass before I had obtained the protection of a powerful chief in those quarters. Meanwhile, well aware from my own experience how far man generally remains in arrear of his projects, in my letter to Government I represented my principal object as only to reach the Niger at the town of Sáy, while all beyond that was extremely uncertain. My little troop consisted of the following indivi
duals. First, Mohammed el Gatróni, the same faithful young lad who had accompanied me as a servant all the way from Fezzán to Kúkawa, and whom, on my starting for A'damáwa, I had sent home, very reluctantly, with my despatches and with the late Mr. Richardson's effects, on condition that, after having staid some time with his wife and children, he should return. He had lately come back with the same caravan which had brought me the fresh supplies. Faithful to my promise, I had mounted him on horseback, and made him my chief servant, with a salary of four Spanish dollars per month - and a present of fifty dollars besides, in the event of my enterprise being successfully terminated. My second servant, and the one upon whom, next to Mohammed, I relied most, was 'Abd-Alláhi, or rather, as the name is pronounced in this country, ‘Abd-Alléhi, a young Shúwa from Kótokó, whom I had taken into my service on my journey to Bagirmi, and who, never having been in a similar situation, and not having dealt before with Europeans, at first had caused me a great deal of trouble, especially as he was laid up with the small pox for forty days during my stay in that country. He was a young man of very pleasing manners and straightforward character, and, as a good and pious Moslim, formed a useful link between myself and the Mohammedans; but he was sometimes extremely whimsical, and, after having written out his contract for my whole journey to the west and back, I had the greatest trouble in making
him adhere to his own stipulations. I had unbounded control over my men, because I agreed with them that they should not receive any part of their salary on the road, but the whole on my successful return to Haúsa. 'Abd-Alláhi was likewise mounted on horseback, but had only a salary of two dollars, and a present of twenty dollars. Then came Mohammed ben A’hmed, the fellow of whom I have already spoken on my journey to Kánem, and who, though a person of very indifferent abilities, and at the same time very self-conceited on account of his Islám, was yet valued by me for his honesty, while he, on his part, having been left by his countrymen and co-religionists in a very destitute situation, became attached to myself.
I had two more freemen in my service, one, a brother of Mohammed el Gatróni, who was only to accompany me as far as Zinder; the other an Arab from the borders of Egypt, and called Slimán el Ferjáni, a fine, strong man, who had once formed part of the band of the Welád Slimán in Kánem, and who might have been of great service to me, from his knowledge of the use of firearms and his bodily strength; but he was not to be trusted, and deserted me in a rather shameful manner a little beyond Kátsena.
Besides these freemen, I had in my service two liberated slaves, Dýrregu, a Haúsa boy, and A'bbega, a Marghí lad, who had been set free by the late Mr. Overweg, — the saine young lads whom on my re
turn to Europe I brought to this country, where they promised to lay in a store of knowledge, and who on the whole have been extremely useful to me, although A’bbega not unfrequently found some other object
Dýrregu. more interesting than my camels, which were in. trusted to his care, and which in consequence he lost repeatedly.
In addition to these servants, I had attached to my