When the time for action came, this army of warriors swept through the Chinga country from one end to the other, destroying the villages, and wiping out of existence all who opposed them. It was some time before peace could be restored, and when that time came the Chinga people, as a force to be reckoned with in the country, had ceased to exist.
My control over the whole country now complete—Get back with my ivory to Karuri’s—Recover all the property of the murdered Goanese—My position recognized by all the chiefs—Violent death of my enemy, the rain-maker—Peaceful rule—Try to improve the agriculture of the country—Imitators of my schemes cause trouble in the country—Troubles of a ruler—Outbreak of smallpox—Famine—My attempts at alleviating the distress misunderstood—Daily routine in a native village—”Sin vomiting”—Native customs—Native hospitality among themselves—Adventures with lions
The trouble being thus settled, I got my ivory through to headquarters, being met on the road by Karuri, bringing a force to my assistance, my messengers having acquainted him with the state of affairs. From this time on I had complete control of the country; everything that had been stolen from the Goanese was given up, while their murderers had received such punishment as they were not likely to forget in a generation.
When matters had quieted down again, and I had time to review the situation, I took the first opportunity of sending messengers through to
the Government, with a full report of the recent occurrences; while I also communicated with the relatives of the murdered Goanese, two brothers who, I heard, were living at Nairobi, sending through to them the whole of the stolen property which I had recovered. I found out later that, through some misunderstanding or other, the heads of the murdered men—which had been found after the fighting was over—had likewise been sent in to Nairobi; which, while serving as proof to the officials that the reports I had been sending in from time to time as to the character of the natives were not without foundation, was a most regrettable occurrence, and must, I fear, have given much pain to the relatives.
The fighting being now over, and the Chinga people—such as remained of them—having given assurances of their desire and intention to live at peace with their neighbours, the country now settled down into a condition of quietness such as had never been known before. My mission through the country had served to produce a spirit of friendship between the different clans and tribes which effectually put an end to the petty quarrelling and constant fighting which had hitherto gone on; and from this time I was looked upon as practically the king of the country, all matters in dispute being referred to my judgment, and I was constantly being
called upon to give counsel and advice upon every conceivable subject which affected the welfare of the people. The three most powerful chiefs in the country—Karuri, Karkerrie, and Wagombi—acknowledged me as their leader, and chiefs and people were now entirely under my control. As proof of the altered condition of the country, I could now send messengers to any one of the chiefs or headmen without any fear of their being attacked or molested on the way.
The reader will remember that I have several times mentioned an individual who was known as the chief rain-maker, a man who was by no means well disposed towards me, on account of the fact that my influence in the country greatly weakened his position. He went out of his way, on every possible occasion, to cause me as much trouble and annoyance as he could; while, in connexion with this Chinga trouble, I found that my suspicions as to his having had a large share in the 佛山南海桑拿休闲会所 matter were perfectly correct. In fact, he had engineered the whole business, both with regard to the murder of the Goanese traders and the subsequent attack on my safari, the former being really a sort of preliminary to the latter, intended to convince the natives that it was quite possible, as well as profitable, to attack and murder a white man, as he carefully explained to the people that the Goanese were white men, and of the same kind as myself.
This attempt having failed, like all his other efforts to remove me, he was not content to accept defeat and let the matter rest, but continued to scheme for my removal until his persistence was the ultimate cause of his own death, which occurred in the following manner.
Some time after the Chinga business, reports were brought in to my headquarters at Karuri’s of serious tribal fighting and raiding in a district some 佛山桑拿我爱桑拿网 twenty miles to the east of Karuri’s, and after a council of the principal men had been held, it was decided that a force should be sent to reduce the offenders to order. Consequently I set out with Karuri, and about a thousand warriors, for the scene of the disturbance. Soon after we had passed the boundary of the disturbed district, which lay partly in the chief rain-maker’s territory—for he was a tribal chief, as well as the principal rain-maker—he came out to meet us, with every sign of friendliness, and said that he had brought some of his people to help us to put matters right. Being fully occupied with the matter in hand, and quite ready to welcome any friendly advances from my old enemy, I met him in the same spirit, and told him to let his following of some three hundred warriors fall in with the rest of the expedition, and we continued our march. All went well until 佛山桑拿莞式服务 we reached the first of the offending villages, where we met with strong opposition, and had to
advance our force in extended order to attack the enemy. The order to advance had just been given, and the force were crossing the brow of the hill which stood between them and the enemy, Karuri and myself, together with some of the principal headmen, following them more leisurely up the hill, when I suddenly heard a shot fired immediately behind me, and, turning round, saw the chief rain-maker lying on the ground, while one of the four askaris who formed my personal escort was just reloading his rifle. On my asking what had happened, I was told by Karuri and the askari that the chief rain-maker had posted an ambush of men with poisoned arrows in the bush near, and was just signalling them to shoot me down from behind, when my escort caught him in the act and fired. Going over to where he lay, I found that nothing could 佛山桑拿论坛888 be done for him, as the heavy Snider bullet had gone through his sword—which these people wear rather high up on the right side—and entered his body just above the hip, so that the case was hopeless from the first, as he himself recognized. When I spoke to him he made no complaint about his fate, but begged that five blankets which I had given him at various times might be brought, and that he might be wrapped up in them and buried, instead of being thrown into the bush for the hyenas to eat, as was the usual Kikuyu custom. Having received my assurance that his last wish
should be carried out, he died, without saying anything further. Although the man had undoubtedly brought his fate on himself by his treachery, I very much regretted his death, as I thought we were getting on better terms, and he was one of the finest specimens of the intelligent savage—physically as well as mentally—that I have known. Had he been content to run straight and work with me for the good of his people, he would have been able to do a 佛山桑拿按摩网论坛 great deal for them.
But we had little time to spare for regrets, for although his death took a great deal of the heart out of his people who had been set to ambush us, they still attempted to carry out his plan to wipe us all out, and as our followers were by this time well over the brow of the hill, we had as much as we could do to hold our own. I managed, however, to get a couple of 最新佛山飞机按摩论坛 messengers through the warriors surrounding us, to summon some of our men back to our help. On the arrival of reinforcements, those of the rain-maker’s people who were not prepared to give up their weapons and surrender cleared off as rapidly as possible.
Strangely enough, in the course of the same day’s operations I was able to do my old friend Karuri a good turn by saving the life of his eldest son, a boy of about eighteen, named Cachukia, who had only recently attained to
warrior rank, and was out on his first expedition. We were returning from the reduction of a village where we had met with considerable resistance, and lost rather heavily, when I noticed that Cachukia was not with us, and on inquiring what had become of him, I was told that he had been killed in the final assault on the village. Not wishing to take any chance of the boy having been simply badly wounded and left to bleed to death, I took a few men with me and made my way back to the scene of the fight, where I found the unfortunate youngster still living, but very seriously hurt, having two bad spear wounds in the chest, both of which had penetrated the lung. Although the case seemed pretty hopeless, I could not leave him there to bleed to death, so getting the men to make a stretcher with a blanket and a couple of young saplings, I had him carried back to his father’s place, where he gradually recovered, and to-day he is as strong and healthy a man as any in the tribe, of which he should be the chief on his father’s death.
It may be worth while mentioning that the man who shot the chief rain-maker was so overwhelmed with what he had done, and the possible consequences to himself if he remained anywhere in the neighbourhood of the late lamented’s district, or even where his people could easily get at him, that he cleared out of
that part of the country altogether, and no one knew where he had gone. I met him some years afterwards on the road in the neighbourhood of Naivasha, when he recalled the incident to my memory, telling me that he had never ventured to go back to his own district.
Soon after my return to headquarters I organized a big safari to take the food and ivory I had collected down to Naivasha, and on this journey I took about a thousand loads of food into the Government station, which they were very pleased to get. I was told that I could take in as much food as I could possibly collect, as some of the flour was required for the other Government stations up-country, where their supply of food had fallen off locally.
During my absence an Indian store had been opened in Naivasha, and having sold my food and ivory, I was able to buy everything that I required for trading at this store, and among the other things I purchased to take back with me were a lot of seeds, including some of the black wattle.
WA-KIKUYU WOMEN POUNDING GRAIN FOR MAKING NATIVE DRINK
Returning to my home in the mountains, I settled down at Karuri’s with a prospect of calmer days before me than I had experienced during the previous twelve months, during which I had been getting the country under control, and now I had time to set about improving the country itself, and got the natives to work making better
roads and building bridges across the rivers, and generally increasing the facilities for getting about the country. I also made a very large garden close to my camp, in which I planted the seeds which I had bought at Naivasha, and had the satisfaction of finding that almost every English vegetable would grow well in that climate, while the black wattle I had planted also flourished splendidly, and has, I believe, at the present day grown into quite a little forest.
With the opening up of the country by the railway, new difficulties arose. My own success in the country induced many traders, Somali, Arab, and Swahili, to try their fortunes with the natives, and so long as they stuck to legitimate trading, all went well, but they adopted methods which soon created a strong feeling of discontent throughout the country. In many cases these traders, who had very little in the way of trade goods, represented themselves as working for Karanjai—which was the native name by which I was known—and instead of doing any trading, billeted themselves on the natives, making them keep them, and would often even steal the sheep and other belongings of the Kikuyu. The natives repeatedly complained to me of the misbehaviour of these so-called traders, and when I told them that they were not my people, and that I had nothing to do with them, the natives sometimes retaliated on these men who were thus robbing
them. Wandering Swahili, and the other rascals of their kind, came complaining to me. I told them that if they could not get on with the natives the best thing for them to do was to leave the country.
Matters went on in this way for some time, incidents of the kind becoming more and more frequent, until the whole country was in a state of unrest, and as I was continually travelling about the country from one chief to another, I was always hearing of them, and on one of these journeys, I had personal proof of the imposition and robbery that was being practised on the natives by these scoundrels. I happened to be in the neighbourhood of Mount Kenia—where it was still necessary to have a fair number of rifles to go about in safety—and two or three of these Somali traders, who had not guns enough to venture alone, had been following me on the journey, about a day’s march behind. It appeared that at the last village at which they had stopped they had driven away about sixty sheep from the native kraal, and had afterwards sat down quietly to trade these sheep off for ivory in my camp. As soon as the case was brought to my notice, I at once ordered them to return the sheep, and told them that the best thing they could do was to get out of the country at once, as they could not count on my assistance if the natives attacked them. It came to my
knowledge that they had made their way down to Nairobi and there spread reports about my killing natives and taking their sheep away from them. The officials were practically ignorant of what was going on, and I knew that the reports of men being killed and things of that sort would be believed by them, in all probability—especially as I was a white man and the reports were brought by natives. This meant trouble for me both ways, as unless I got rid of these men they disturbed the peace of the whole country; while if I did so they carried misleading reports to the Government—always ready to believe anything to the disadvantage of a white trader—and so, between the natives, the traders, and the Government, my position was no sinecure.
It was about this time that the smallpox broke out in the country, and for the time being all my other troubles were relegated to the background, in the face of the necessity for adequately dealing with this awful plague. We were having a shauri, when I noticed in the crowd an elderly man, a stranger to that part of the country, and a single glance was sufficient to show me that he was suffering from smallpox. I explained to the natives the significance of my discovery, and told them that if he were allowed to mix with them they would certainly get the smallpox and die. They immediately stood away from him and said that I ought to shoot
him, which to their savage mind was the most natural precaution to prevent the disease spreading. I explained to them that such a course was impossible, though in view of the subsequent events, the forfeiture of this man’s life at that time would have meant the saving of thousands of lives which were lost in the epidemic of which he was the cause. I told the natives what they ought to do to avoid the infection, and arranged for an isolation camp to be built in which the man was placed, telling some of the people who lived near by to leave food for him at a respectful distance, so that he could fetch it for himself until he got better, and also instructed them to see that he did not, on any account, leave the camp. Some days later I was travelling through the country when I again saw the man in the crowd, and in great alarm sent some of my own men back to the isolation camp with him. But it was too late. The disease had already spread to others, and I saw a lot of bad cases among the people, and though I tried to get them all into isolation camps, it was practically no use. When an outbreak occurred in a family they would not report it, but continued to live and sleep together in the same hut, with the result that, in most cases, the whole family took the disease and died. I sent into Naivasha for some lymph and started vaccinating the people. They took the matter in the proper light, and raised
no objection, so that I was able to vaccinate thousands of them, which must, undoubtedly, have been the means of saving many lives; but in spite of all I could do, thousands died, many whole villages being wiped out.
One rather remarkable thing about this epidemic was that Karuri’s village escaped entirely, not a single case occurring among the inhabitants, which Karuri claimed to be due to certain precautions he took to ward off the evil. He got some sticks and split them down the middle, and then poured some black powder in the opening, afterwards pegging the sticks down across all the footpaths leading to the village. It did not keep people from coming in, and I could not see in what way the sticks could do any good, but Karuri had great faith in their virtues, and as no case of smallpox occurred in the village he took the credit for keeping it away.
Karuri told me that one of the reasons of the respect with which he was regarded by his people was that he possessed a most wonderful poison. If any one even looked at this poison it caused certain death. The secret of this drug, he told me, had been handed down and preserved in his family for two or three generations. The poison itself was kept buried in the bush, one of the tribe being specially told off to guard it and dig up the package when it was required
for use; but I could never learn anything about the way in which it was used, and was very much inclined to believe that the whole thing was a legend, of which the old man made use to strengthen his influence among the people. I certainly believe that there was some box or package buried in the bush and carefully guarded, but whether it actually contained poison or anything else I question whether Karuri himself could have told any one. The old man was always very anxious to possess samples of the poisons contained in my medicine-chest, but although I gave him many medicines of various kinds, I always refused to part with any of the poisons, as it is not improbable that he might have taken an opportunity of testing my immunity with some of them.
While on this subject, some account of the native practice of protecting their shambas, or rather the crops growing in them, from thieves may be of interest. Of course this was done by playing on the superstitious fears of the savage, the usual method being to hang some article, such as an old earthenware cooking-pot, an old broken calabash, or best of all, the cast-off earthenware nozzles of smith’s bellows, on a bush or tree near the edge of the cultivated patch, and any one pilfering in face of this warning to trespassers was supposed to fall sick,
or even die, as the result of his temerity. A similar practice prevails on the West Coast, where a stick with a piece of cloth tied to it, or inserted in a cleft at the top, may often be seen in the cassava patch; and it is supposed that any one violating the protection which this ju-ju is supposed to afford, will, at the least, suffer the loss of some portion of his body, which will rot away and drop off.
The old saying that “it never rains but it pours” was abundantly verified in our case, only in a contrary sense to the literal meaning of the proverb. The failure of the rains in two successive seasons—which was attributed to the white man having brought the railway into the country—brought about a famine, which still further depleted the population. The country around Karuri’s, being mountainous, was not affected so much as the part to the east of us, on the caravan road, and more towards the coast. At our high elevation, surrounded by the watersheds of Mount Kenia and the Aberdare Range, we could always rely on a fair amount of rain, though we had had much less than usual during these two seasons. The general famine in the country affected me, inasmuch as the food which I was there to buy found its way out on the borders of the country, and consequently my supplies were cut off. Having occasion to go down to Nairobi about this time, I saw hundreds
of poor wretches dead or dying on the road, while some of my men heard gruesome tales of men killing and eating each other in their desperation at the lack of food. No case of this kind came under my personal notice, but I have seen the natives sitting down and boiling the skins which they wore as clothing in the effort to soften them sufficiently to enable them to be eaten.
Numbers of the starving people, when they heard that food was to be got in the part of the country from which I came, started out to try to get there, but were robbed and killed on the way by the Kalyera people. It sounds rather paradoxical speaking of starving people being robbed, but the statement is, nevertheless, perfectly correct; as, before starting out, these poor vagrants collected all their household goods and took them along with them, in the hope of exchanging them for food. A few, indeed, had sheep and a few head of cattle with them. Thousands of these people would start off together, and being weak and exhausted with hunger, they fell an easy prey to the Kalyera.
The natives begged me to take them out to Karuri’s, and pitying their miserable condition, I agreed to do so, and got together a caravan of several thousands of the starving wretches, among whom were a number of natives who possessed a fair quantity of sheep—perhaps one
man would have thirty sheep, and another five or six head of cattle, while, of course, there were
numbers of others who had absolutely nothing. It was pitiable to see these people staggering along, first one and then another dropping out to die on the road. Before starting out I made it perfectly plain to them that I would only lead them to the “land of promise” on condition that they placed themselves absolutely under my control and obeyed my orders in everything, and this they promised to do. When I saw them staggering along, almost too weak to drag one foot before the other, and dying at the rate of about fifty per day, I ordered those who had cattle and sheep to deliver them up to me, and each night when we got into camp, I had as many killed as were required to give them just enough food to keep them alive. Niggers have absolutely no feelings of humanity, and the owners of the sheep and cattle grumbled loudly at my
action in feeding the others with their property, which they charged me with stealing. I felt perfectly justified, however, in the course I was adopting, although I was pretty certain at the time that these people would some day do their best to make trouble for me, by misrepresenting the facts to the Government officials, who, while always ready to accept any statements against myself, were much less inclined to take the responsibility for their own laxity in the performance
of their duty. I never ate any of the meat myself, nor did I allow any of my men to do so, so that it could not be said that I had any personal benefit from my action.
As I anticipated, when I took the sheep one or two of the natives deserted from the caravan and went back to the Government station to report that I had been looting their sheep. After
much difficulty I got the people through to the Kikuyu country, and distributed them to the different villages, giving them plainly to understand that they must behave themselves.
Not being able at this time to buy any more food, I went about among the natives and started improving my own camp, cultivating the land, making roads, &c. On my visits to different parts of the country I talked with the chiefs and took general note of what was going on, and at the same time bought any ivory that I heard of. Eventually it was brought to my notice that the people I had billeted on the different villages when they were starving, being now healthy and well fed, were bullying and domineering over the natives who had helped them in their time of misfortune. These people I had brought in had previously lived on the edge of the country, in touch with the white man and his civilization, consequently they had different notions and ideas from those amongst whom they had come to live, who had not, as yet, come in contact with any
white man except myself. They declined to acknowledge my authority, and endeavoured to assert their power over the natives by taking charge of the villages, and, in some cases, stealing their sheep and interfering with their womenfolk. This led to all kinds of trouble, and the people naturally became anxious to get rid of their unwelcome guests, and they came to me saying that, as I had brought them in, and they were now all right, they ought to leave the country. I explained this to the intruders, but they absolutely refused to go. Amongst the number were some Swahili, who would settle down in a village for a twelvemonth, simply loafing about and living on the natives; and though they called themselves traders, they were really deserters from some caravans. There were also many who were wanted at the coast for different offences, and had somehow or other managed to get mixed up with the famine-stricken people. They knew that I was not a Government official, and as they refused to obey my orders I could not get rid of them. This gave rise to a lot of quarrelling, and a number of people were killed on both sides; so that I could see that the only thing for the peace of the country was to get rid of this bad element at all costs. I therefore gave them three days’ notice to quit, informing them that if they were found in the country at the end of that time I would not be
responsible for anything that happened to them. They took no notice of my warning, and at the end of the three days the people took matters into their own hands, and drove them out of the country, when, although there was no really serious fighting, some of them got killed and several were wounded. The evicted ones, as I expected that they would, went straight to the officials and complained that I had robbed them of their sheep and driven them out of the country. I was first informed of this by a letter from Mr. Gilkinson, the Government official at Nairobi, and at once sent Karuri and some of the other chiefs into Nairobi to explain the true facts of the case, thinking that a personal interview between the official and the natives would be much more effective than any statement that I, a white man, could make. This idea was apparently correct, as the explanation which they gave proved quite satisfactory—at least, this was the impression which was conveyed to me by the report which they made to me on their return.
The country having been rid of the disturbing element of these alien rogues, I now settled down once more to a peaceful mode of life, going from village to village buying food, and sending in supplies at more regular intervals to Naivasha, where they were very badly needed. There was no further difficulty in finding porters, and a safari of from five hundred to one thousand men
went down to the Government station regularly about once every month to take in the food.
Some account of the ordinary routine of my daily life among these people may prove of interest to the general reader. Everybody turned out, as a rule, about six a.m., and while I had my morning cup of tea and biscuits, or possibly a dish of porridge made from mawhali or umkanori flour, with fresh milk, the men turned out and cleaned up the camp thoroughly. This over, the men were formed up for a couple of hours’ drill and rifle exercise—a training which every man, whether one of the askaris or not, had to go through, so that, in the event of my losing a few askaris, I always had trained men ready to take their places. At first, of course, I had to undertake this daily drill myself, but after a time the native sergeant and corporal became proficient enough to relieve me of everything but superintendence of the parade. Drill was over about ten o’clock, and then I held a court for the trial of any serious cases of crime, or met the chiefs and elders in consultation with regard to measures for the general welfare of the people. By the time this was over it was time for lunch, which was my first real meal of the day, and generally consisted of a dish of mutton—and the native mutton is some of the best in the world. This was sometimes varied by European tinned provisions, of which I always
kept a fairly good stock at my headquarters. The afternoon was spent in overseeing the work of the men in my shamba, attending to the repair or rebuilding of any of the huts that were in need of attention, or carrying out improvements in the camp—unless any of the chiefs had come in to see me, in which case the afternoon would be given up to interviewing them. Dinner was served about seven o’clock, in European style, as I had been fortunate enough to get a really good Swahili cook, who could turn out a most appetising meal at very short notice. Of course, I had to dine in solitary state, being the only white man in the country, and about eight or nine o’clock I would turn in for the night. This, of course, was the day’s programme at headquarters, though when out on safari I made a point of following the same routine, as far as the circumstances allowed. One day in each week I had a big dance at my place; and this day was practically a holiday, the dance taking precedence of all ordinary work.
The daily life of a chief in times of peace does not present much variety, and the following account of a day out of the life of my friend Karuri is a fair sample. He was not quite such an early riser as myself, usually putting in an appearance to count his cattle and other stock when they were let out to graze, which, owing to the fogs and damp generally prevailing at that elevation
in the early morning, was not generally done until about eight o’clock. There was no regular morning meal among these people, who were in the habit of indulging in a sweet potato or a few bananas whenever they felt hungry. Having finished counting his stock, the greater part of the day would be spent in settling disputes and hearing minor cases, which, owing to the native love of argument, were often of interminable length. The old gentleman took no interest in the working of his shambas, which he left entirely to his wives, of whom he had some sixty or more. As the hearing of the cases was accompanied by much drinking of njohi, both judge and litigants were apt to be in a somewhat foggy condition by the time the Court adjourned for the day, which did not generally take place until the time for the evening meal, which, as I have mentioned, is really the only regular meal of the day for Kikuyu. Sometimes the cases were not even closed then, but as soon as darkness came on judge and litigants would adjourn to a hut, and continue the discussion over the sweet potatoes, until it was time for them to turn in, which they usually did about nine o’clock.
One not infrequent interruption to the ordinary routine of Karuri’s day was the sacrificial meal of a sheep, in honour of their god, Ngai, which took place sometimes as often as twice or thrice
a week. Whether the old chief’s fondness for roast mutton had anything to do with the frequency of his offerings I cannot say, but he certainly never seemed to neglect any opportunity which served as an excuse for one of these meals. As I was present on some of the occasions, it may be worth while to give some description of the ceremony, for which no extra preparations were made on my account, as is sometimes the case when white men are to be present at any of their functions.
At the time appointed, Karuri, accompanied by any others who were to take part in the ceremony, went out into one of the “sacred groves” in the bush, taking with them a sheep, which, on arrival at the spot where the sacrifice was to take place, was killed by strangling, its throat being cut directly it was dead, and the blood caught in a calabash, and put on one side. A sort of wooden gridiron was then made, by planting four upright sticks in the ground and laying others across them, under which a fire was lighted, and the sheep, having by this time been cut up, was roasted on this. While the cooking was going on, the blood, which had been put on one side, was put into the stomach, thus making a sort of black-pudding, which was then roasted, and eaten after the meat. The meat was eaten in the Abyssinian fashion, each man taking up the joint, and biting hold of as much
as he could get into his mouth, the mouthful then being severed from the joint with his sword, and the joint passed on to his neighbour, who did the same. I managed to introduce one or two slight modifications into the manufacture of the black-puddings, by getting them to cut up some of the fat, and mix it with the blood, and boil the ingredients, instead of baking them. No women or children were ever allowed to be present on any occasion when the men were eating meat, as, like the Masai, the Kikuyu do not allow their women to touch meat, and therefore, to keep them out of temptation, never allow them to see the men eat it.