Why the Tsavo Lions Became Man
Lions of Tsavo Killed 28 Indian MenThe lions of Tsavo killed and ate 28 Indian men. And on a second thought, the Tsavo lions also fed on about 110 local African men. This happened on March 1898 to December 1898 when the British started building the Kenya Uganda railway. It was not until the railway line reached Tsavo that the lions took charge and decided their meals will be human being.
First Missionaries to East Africa
The first missionaries from the Church Missionary to East Africa were Rev. Johann Rebmann and Dr. Johann Ludwig Krapf (may God rest their souls in peace) who arrived in Mombasa in 1844. The two, together with David Livingstone (he who inspired abolitionists of the slave trade, explorers and missionaries), helped open up East Africa to missionaries who initiated the education and health care for Africans. These missionaries had to study and learn African languages and cultures in order to communicate and spread Christianity the names of these missionaries are held in high esteem by many African. It took the missionaries well past the time the railway was being constructed for the missionaries to fully educate the Africans. It is no wonder that before the year 1920, most African were disposing off their dead and those very sick by throwing them in the bush so that the Gods (read lions and hyenas) can take care of them there in the bush.
Queen Victoria In 1898, Her Majesty's Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland had sent Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson (1865 1947) as the chief engineer in charge of the construction of the Kenya Uganda Railway. Chief Engineer Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson had gone to East African with semi skilled laborers from India to work on the construction of the railway line. Upon arrival in Tsavo River, he had to construct a railway bridge over that river and it seemed to take a little bit longer there. The local people must have provided plenty of "free" unskilled labor.
It's at Tsavo Bridge that two large male lions killed and ate 28 Indians and nearly 110 African who were working for Chief Engineer Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson in the construction of Kenya Uganda railway. These two man eaters of Tsavo were so interested in feeding on humans that no scares, campfires and thorn fences would prevent them from going for a few humans at the site camp every night. Hundreds of Africans managed to flee from Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson's site thus halting construction on the bridge.
Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson Made a Fortune Come what may, Her Majesty's Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland wanted that bridge completed, lions or no lions. This being the case, Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson had to eliminate the lions himself so that work on the construction of the bridge can resume. On December 9, 1898, he shot dead the first lion, and three weeks later he brought down the second man eater. It took eight strong men to carry the carcass of each lion back to the camp. As soon as the man eaters of Tsavo were dead, the construction resumed and the bridge was completed in February 1899. Latter, the skins were carefully removed from the lion carcasses and Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson used them as floor rugs for 25 years before selling them to ChicagoFieldMuseum in 1924 for a whopping $5,000 at the time Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson must have made himself a fortune from property that belonged to England and its colonies. Contrast this amount with the Queen Victoria's donation of 2,000 sterling to the starving Irish people from the potato blight of 1845
Slave TradeWhilst the UK Parliament passed the bill that abolished the trading of slaves in 1807 in all its colonies, the slave trade from East Africa to Arabia which was dominated by Arab and African traders in the coastal cities of Zanzibar, Dar es Salaam and Mombasa, was just about halting at around the period the Kenya Uganda railway was being constructed at Tsavo. Since TsavoRiver where the bridge was being constructed was a main crossing point for slave caravans bound for Zanzibar, the Tsavo lions may have been accustomed to being fed on dead and sickly slaves.
Alone in the BushWhilst the cremation of dead Indian/Hindu railroad workers may be sighted as a reason that was inviting scavenging lions, this may not be true as the Hindu cremations still go on today without creating man eating lions from thousands of wild lions in East Africa. But perhaps what may be questionable is what a military Lieutenant Colonel is capable of doing with illiterate/hostile freed slaves, and Tsavo lions, alone in the bush.
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to link back to this webpage from your web page, blog, or discussion forums. However, from a bit of research on the two lions, one learns that one lion had a diseased tooth and was most certainly in pain, that secondly, there was LITTLE prey due to disease and so this pair may have been ostracized from a pride and left to survive. The Indians arrival could have just been coincidental. Without the easy prey, one of the lions would have perished.
John Fairweather 3 years ago
Patterson's account includes the story of the railway inspector who was killed by a lion in his rail car. This same car (essentially a wooden Winnebago) is on display at the Railway Museum in Nairobi. When I first saw it, the car was in 1890's period condition and had a plaque beneath the screen window through which the lion dragged his victim. When they were filming Out of Africa the producers needed rolling stock, so the car was repainted in Uganda Railway colors. When Streep first encounters Redford, she was in that very same car and stood at the door where the lion entered. Visitors to the museum can enter the car and take a look. It is a small, but very well designed home on wheels. A century ago, hunters from abroad would rent cars like this and have them parked on a siding out in the bundu to serve as portable hunting lodges.
jackson 3 years ago
Good story but the fortune should be returned to the owners Kenyans in that case. Good day
philipandrews188 2 years ago
Good story telling! I love your work.
Emmanuel Kariuki 2 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya Level 2 CommenterLions actually prefer Zebra, antelope and Wildebeeste even when humans are easily available. Note that Maasais walk past http://www.officialchargersnflstore.com/Ryan_Carrethers_Jersey_Chargers them with their cattle as they have done for millenia, and the Kikuyu used to dispose their dead in the bush so that 'Anubis the Jackal' and funerary God could dispose it. Only the very rich could afford funeral rites. This was a vestigial practice form ancient Egypt. In Amarna, archaeologists found thirty skeletons of jackals, which to me is proof that the poor were disposed off by giving their bodies to the jackals. Only the Royals and Clergy could afford to be buried in either a pyramid or a tomb.
Remember it was not tens of lions that turned into man eaters but only two. That shows that something was wrong with those two lions. As Pam above has said, desease could have been one reason. Even today, old lions who are unable to hunt due to loss of teeth and stamina turn to killing livestock and very rarely, humans.
Some friends have joked that the victims liked their food with spices which gave the lions a taste for human flesh. But that is just a cruel joke. When the two lions were killed after they had killed Police Superintendent C. H. Ryall, there were no more cases of man eating.
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Fourqurean Joseph Robert Fourqurean, age 63, passed away unexpectedly on November 19, 2013. Born January 6, 1950 in Covington, VA, he was a son of the late John Robert and Annabell (Chambers) Fourqurean. He was a member of Mt. Olivett Church in Low Moor, VA and attended New Salem Baptist Church in Columbus, OH. He was a graduate of Bluefield State College in Bluefield, WV, where he was inducted in Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. Joe was inducted in their Athletic Hall of Fame in 2012. Joe played nine years for the British Columbia Lions of the Canadian Football League, where he earned numerous awards that included being named to three separate Lions Dream Teams in 1984, 1994 and 2004 along with being named to their 50 year Dream Team consisting of the top 28 players in the club's history. Lions Wall of Fame in 2011. Joe previously worked for the Columbus City Public Schools as a teacher in Arts and Sciences. Postal Service as a Manager of Distribution Operations at the City Gate location. Joe was preceded in death by three sisters Montrue Webster, Phyllis Payne, and Pauline Fourqurean and two brothers Jimmy and Larry Fourqurean. Joe is also survived by his sisters, Theresa Fourqurean, Richmond, VA, Denise James, Atlanta, GA, Frances Fourqurean, Waldorf, MD, Zina (Rick Brown, Low Moor, VA, Renee Brown, Clifton Forge, VA; and his brothers, Leroy (Irene) Fourqurean, Baltimore, MD, Gregory (Maxzella) Fourqurean, Waldorf, MD, and Steven Fourqurean, Low Moor. In addition, Joe is survived by his mother and father in law, Juanita and Fennissee Trigg, Bluefield, WV; sisters in law, "road dog" Carolyn (Thomas) Kennedy and Lillian (Ahart) Powers, Atlanta, GA. Postal Service), and Fred (Kathleen) Stith. with Rev. Dr. Yvette Jackson officiating. Entombment will follow in Kingwood Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the
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Santa's busy Far North weekend Ben Gardner Authentic Jersey
NAO 28Nov13 SHINING SEASON: The Tzikoucos kids of Kaikohe do some testing before the lights are strung up on Northland's biggest Christmas tree. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
Santa will be a busy man in the Far North this weekend with Christmas parades and festivals in Kerikeri, Kaikohe and Kaeo.
Kaikohe kicks off the festivities on Friday afternoon with a town carnival from 3pm, a parade down Broadway at 6pm and a street party on Clifford St culminating in the ceremonial switching on of Northland's tallest Christmas tree at 8.30pm. The illuminated Norfolk pine, at the corner of Station Rd and Memorial Ave, made national news last year after some residents believed they saw an apparition of the Virgin Mary in its lights.
Other attractions will include kids' activities, displays by Kaikohe Speedway and Car Club, Santa's grotto and a pavement art contest from 4pm.
On Saturday Santa fans may have to choose between Kerikeri and Kaeo.
Kerikeri's parade, organised by the Lions, starts at 12.30pm on Saturday. The route loops the CBD with the start and finish at the Domain. Prizes will be awarded for the best community and best business floats.
New in Kerikeri this year will a Christmas in the Park from 3 6pm in the Domain after the parade. Festival goers are encouraged to bring a picnic and reminded that Kerikeri Domain is a liquor ban area.
A ''giving tree'' will be lit up and, if it survives in its giant pot, will return to the Domain each year. The post parade event is being organised by a group of volunteers calling themselves the Kerikeri Christmas Elves.
Kaeo's Christmas parade starts at noon at the BP service station and makes its way to Whangaroa College for an afternoon of entertainment including local band the Swamp Rockers, Whangarei and Counties Pipe Band, hiphop dancers, vintage cars and a decorated bike competition. Your comment has been received, you need to verify your registration before the comment can be moderated
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