Tsetse Fly

Name ID 2438

See also

Ondaatje, Christopher Journey to the Source of the Nile
Extract Author: Richard F. Burton
Page Number: 112a
Extract Date: 1857

Tsetse Fly

The Lake Regions of Central Africa

In this foul jungle our men also suffered severely from the tzetze [fly] .... On the line followed by the expedition, the tzetze was found extending from Usagara westwards as far as the central lakes; its usual habitat is the jungle-strip which incloses each patch of cultivated ground, and in the latter it is rarely seen. It has more persistency of purpose even than the Egyptian fly, and when beaten off it will return half dozen times to the charge; it can not be killed except by a smart blow, and its long, sharp proboscis draws blood even through a canvas hammock.... In the vicinity of Kilwa it was heard of under the name of "kipanga," the "little sword." It is difficult to conceive the purpose for which this plague was placed in a land so eminently fitted for breeding cattle and for agriculture.... Possibly at some future day, when the country becomes valuable, the tzetze may be exterminated by the introduction of some insectivorous bird, which will be the greatest benefactor that Central Africa ever knew.

Extract ID: 5739

See also

Ondaatje, Christopher Journey to the Source of the Nile
Page Number: 112
Extract Date: 9 Aug 1857

Red-billed hornbil

Burton was a keen observer of flora and fauna. For instance,

"We left Mzizi Mdogo on the 9th August, much cheered by the well-omened appearance of a bird with a red bill, white breast, and long tail-feathers."

This description fits the red-billed hornbill: Burton may have been the first European to see this bird, and, if so, perhaps it should be called Burton's red-billed hornbill. Speke has a weaver-bird named after him; and Grant a gazelle. We saw red-billed hornbills all along the route that Burton and Speke travelled on their way from Bagamoyo to Lake Tanganyika.

Burton also made some interesting observations about the Tsetse Fly. His love for it was no greater than ours:

Extract ID: 5738

See also

Boyes, John (ed. Mike Resnick) Company of Adventurers
Page Number: 115a
Extract Date: 1903

Kilimanjaro Cattle

The absence of any cattle here was surprising, until one day I saw some Natives going along very gingerly with a cow. The animal seemed to be blind and its hoofs were very peculiar, having grown out to a great length at the front. I found that all cattle were kept in huts on the mountain, and I remembered seeing the Natives cutting grass at the foot of the mountain and carrying it up the heights. As these shelters were quite dark inside, the cattle became blind in time. This strange practice may be perhaps accounted for by the fact that in the early days the cattle were confined to prevent them being raided by the Masai, and the custom had remained; or it may have been a safeguard against the Tsetse Fly.

The rainy season had now started in earnest, and we had downpours every day. It was impossible to shift, as all the rivers were in flood and unfordable. In addition everybody was suffering from fever; and, to add to our misfortunes, the donkeys were beginning to die. With no prospect of making a move, I paid off all the porters, keeping only the cook and our personal servants. The rain came down incessantly, and at times we were nearly washed out of our tents. My brother got sick of the whole thing and decided to clear out, so I sent him back to the coast. At intervals we had a few hours fine weather, and I then went out with my gun and did some shooting, and took a few photographs. This photography led to a rather unpleasant incident. Not having a dark room, I had had a hut built of wood and thatched with grass, in which I did my developing at night. While at work in it one night I put my hand down to reach a chemical bottle. Instead of the bottle my hand closed on a huge snake. There was no more developing that night, for needless to say I left the hut rather hurriedly!

Seeing we were likely to stay there some time, a temporary house was put up and all my belongings shifted into it. On examining the trade goods I found that nearly all the cloth had already been eaten through by white ants. It is extraordinary the amount of damage these tiny insects can do, We were obliged to go through our things every day and clean them out. In one day they would eat right through a box and destroy everything in it. The Natives put ashes down to keep them away.

Extract ID: 3602

See also

Kjekshus, Helge Ecology Control and Economic Development in East African History

Chief Game Warden, who later became the Director of Tsetse

Chief Game Warden, who later became the Director of Tsetse research

Extract ID: 1369

See also

Herne, Brian White Hunters: The golden age of African Safaris
Page Number: 215a
Extract Date: 1950's

Dr. George Six

Dr. George Six, a London physician, was an unlikely member of Tanganyika's hunting community. He had come to Africa not with the intention of practicing medicine, but to purchase a farm. Six and his English wife, Mary (nee Bell), the daughter of a judge, rented a house outside Arusha. George soon made the acquaintance of Jacky Hamman at Arusha's government administration building, known as the boma, where Hamman was purchasing game licenses for one of his safaris.

The suave and sophisticated George Six was Hamman's diametric opposite in every way - in physique, temperament, education, intellect, and background - yet the two became firm friends.

Once settled in Arusha Dr. Six opened a gun shop next door to the Safari Hotel where Lawrence-Brown Safaris, Jacky Hamman's outfit, was located. He then purchased two thousand acres in Tanganyika's densely wooded Kiru Valley, south of Lake Manyara. The farm was virgin bushland and lay close beside the wall of the Great Rift Valley, only a few miles from Magara, where Bror and Cockie von Blixen had once lived at Singu Estates. George's acreage was in Tsetse Fly country and useless for domestic animals because of the deadly tsetse-borne disease, trypanosomiasis. In such regions in Tanzania there is an almost total absence of human settlements due to tsetse flies, but nearly always there is an unusual abundance of wildlife, and the Kiru Valley was no exception. In the 1950s it was chock-full of game, particularly elephant, rhino, and buffalo, and provided plenty of sport for the hunting enthusiast.

Extract ID: 3834

See also

Tanganyika Guide
Page Number: 65
Extract Date: 1953

III. The Mwanza—Tabora Road Mwanza—Shinyanga—Tinde—Tabora, 227 miles

From Mwanza this road runs through heavily cultivated country along a beautiful avenue of Cassia simea trees for 31 miles, rice, cotton, groundnuts and millet fields being met with en route. Shinyanga, headquarters of a district and a railway station, is reached at mile 102 from Mwanza. Old Shinyanga, a few miles away, is the headquarters of the Tsetse Research Department and a visit is recommended. At Mwadui, 18 miles away, is the now famous Williamson Diamond Mine.

From Shinyanga the road runs to Tinde, where the main road to Bukoba and Uganda is met. The Manyonga river is crossed at about mile 130, and the road then proceeds through open cattle country to Nzega, 75 miles from Tabora. Tabora is a town of considerable importance, and contains hotels and two banks. From Nzega a branch road leads to Sekenke and Singida ; the former place was formerly the centre of important gold-mining activities.

Extract ID: 5635

See also

Ondaatje, Christopher Journey to the Source of the Nile
Page Number: 113
Extract Date: 1996

Tsetse Fly

Needless to say, Burton's hope has not yet been realized. Nor were tsetse flies the only insects to menace him and Speke in the Second Region:

Extract ID: 5740

See also

Ondaatje, Christopher Journey to the Source of the Nile
Page Number: 130
Extract Date: 1996

We chugged and bumped along

We chugged and bumped along the dirt road through dense, brown thorn thickets, first in a southerly direction, then west. The road followed a relatively straight path very near the railway line. After the central railway leaves Dodoma, it drops down past the Bahi Swamp, then climbs the escarp-ment of the rift valley. It continues along the caravan route and through what is known as the Itigi Thicket before the land opens out into Myika country. The track finally exits the tsetse-ridden woods and slides into Tabora station.

Itigi, forty-two kilometres from Manyoni, is where Thad Peterson's missionary parents had arrived by railway in 1952, en route to the Iambi area, where Thad was later born. There are still Christian missionaries all over Tanzania as well as in Uganda and Kenya.

Outside Itigi we continued running alongside the railway. Again there was dense thorn thicket on either side of the road and occasional herdsmen, but the population was much sparser along this straight road fifteen metres from the railway track, which cut through very flat land.

Between the first gradient of the Rubeho Pass and Tabora, Burton and Speke passed through thirty-three stations. Although hardly any of the place names that Burton mentioned appeared on our maps, many were recognized by the local inhabitants. When I first read Burton's The Lake Regions of Central Africa, I was struck by the whimsical literal translations he provided for place names. I was again reminded of this when we reached Kazi Kazi, a small railway station whose name means "work-work." I was never really sure whether this name implied colonial criticism of the natives or native criticism of the colonials.

Extract ID: 5756

See also

Ondaatje, Christopher Journey to the Source of the Nile
Page Number: 133
Extract Date: 1996

A pale golden sunrise

The next morning a pale golden sunrise lit the east, glinting through the feathery acacias across the clearing in front of our camp. The morning chorus began: doves, the chatter of innumerable quelea birds, and the buzzing and humming of the bees and tsetse flies.

We broke camp at 8:30 a.m. and set off, always keeping our eye out for the names Burton listed along his route: Tura, Kwale, Rubuga, Ukona, Kigwa, Hanga, and then Kazeh. Rubuga and Kigwa are on the modern Tanzanian map. On the way, we heard radio reports of an ebola outbreak in Zaire. This viral infection ruptures cell walls, beginning with those of the internal organs, and turns the victim's body into a sack of bloody pulp.

On and on we went, sometimes passing from red-soil regions into areas of rich, black earth — ideal for growing cotton. Burton specifically mentions the cultivation of cotton at Ukona: "cotton-plots, carefully hedged round against the cattle, afforded material for the loom, which now appeared in every village." Then we came upon a sandy track winding through miombo (woodlands). The railway was some distance north of us, but this was definitely the old caravan route the two explorers had taken to Kazeh. Every now and then we passed a borassus palm — the tallest fruit-bearing palm in the country — planted by the old Arab slave traders. They really are enormous trees, and are distinctive for the cluster of fan-like fronds at the top of a thin, straight bare trunk.

We got lost again, about sixty kilometres from our last camp, and asked a village elder where we were. He confirmed that this was the subdistrict of Kigwa somewhere near the Burton route. Eventually we got to the town of Kigwa proper, then proceeded to Kinamagi. We began to see more settlements and more cultivated land. The Nyamwezi tribe inhabits this area. According to Pollangyo, they are very musical people and love singing. Mango trees lined the route, their branches laden with green fruit. We crossed the railway again coming up from the south, and then, at long last, arrived at Tabora.

Extract ID: 5760

See also

Ondaatje, Christopher Journey to the Source of the Nile
Page Number: 144
Extract Date: 1996

Exploring the Malagarasi

On leaving his Fourth Region, Burton noted: "The fauna of Unyamwezi are similar to those described in Usagara and Ugogo. In the jungles quadrumana are numerous: lions and leopards, cynhyxnas and wildcats, haunt the forests; the elephant and the rhinoceros, the giraffe and the Cape buffalo, the zebra, the quagga, and the koodoo wander over the plains; and the hippopotamus and crocodile are found in every large pool."

Then, in a more lyrical vein, he added: "The Land of the Moon, which is the garden of Central Inter tropical Africa presents an aspect of peaceful rural beauty which soothes the eye like a medicine after the red glare of barren Ugogo.... There are few scenes more soft and soothing than a view of Unyamwezi in the balmy evenings of spring."

By crossing the Malagarasi River, Burton and Speke entered the Fifth Region of their journey. The tone of Burton's remarks grew harsher. They were now deep in the interior, in mosquito-infested territory described by Burton as "a howling wilderness, once populous and fertile, but now laid waste by the fierce Watuta."

Our own experience of the area was much more pleasant. After a breakfast of maize porridge, eggs, papaya, and pineapple, Thad, Pollangyo, and I set out to explore along the Malagarasi. We came across some old bark canoes similar to those used for Burton's crossing. We also found a small fishing camp. The fishing looked promising, but we did not have time to linger. Great swirls in the water signified the existence of large fish — or crocodiles. There were a whole variety of birds: fish eagle, black-chested snake eagle, egret, red-necked spur fowl, wattled plover, nub-billed duck. The banks were thickly overgrown right down to the water's edge, making travelling by Land Rover extremely difficult. We managed five or six kilometres, but were absolutely massacred by tsetse flies. No amount of Muskol would keep them away. At about 9:30 a.m. we returned to camp, where Joshua and Ali had finished packing the second Land Rover.

As we headed back along the Malagarasi River, looking for a road to Ujiji, we passed isolated villages of small, thatched mud huts. A Sukuma villager in one settlement advised us that Ugaga, which Burton had mentioned, was ahead of us.

In the outlying areas, the roads are certainly not made for automobiles, and few cars are seen. Some people were curious and came to inspect the Land Rovers, but for the most part people kept to themselves and got on with their own business. In the East it would have been very different. There, if you stopped your car or jeep, twenty or thirty people would immediately crowd around you — looking, touching, questioning. The villagers in Africa, by contrast, tend to concentrate on their own affairs. Whenever we wanted information, we had to search for someone to ask.

About an hour after crossing the river, we had to stop to fix a flat tire. It was a very rudimentary road wandering westward through woodland. There should have been game, but we did not see any, though we did notice roan or sable antelope droppings on the road. We went on through Ilunde, a village now almost completely deserted, and crossed railway tracks again, going on to Charkuru and the valley settlement of Uvinza, a much larger town than most we had passed. This is where the salt works are that Burton describes:

Extract ID: 5772

See also

Ubwani, Zephania Babati land conflict
Page Number: 4
Extract Date: 2002

A bereaved and shocked Patel

The estate Managing Director, Mr. Mahesh B. Patel, who parents were hacked to death, was there and talked about the labor problem, poor weather and arson which often razed his cane fields. He was the chairman of the Commercial Farmers Association.

Other Asian farmers, who did not want their names mentioned, hinted that they may be compelled to sell their farms and opt for other businesses because of what they perceived as threats from local leaders and villagers.

The Asian farmers did not need to elaborate on the land crisis in Kiru.

Even for a first time visitor, Kiru Valley bore all the hallmarks of poor labor relations between the local communities, on one hand, and commercial farmers on the other.

It is not clear if the Kiru Valley was fully inhabited prior to the coming of the settler farmers 50 years ago.

Located in the rift valley, south of Lake Manyara, the area is notorious for high temperatures. It was not a favorable land for cattle grazers because of the high incidence of trypanosomiasis, a disease caused by tsetse flies and which is lethal to livestock and human beings.

The area was also notorious for bilharzia, a disease associated with snails, especially in water logged areas and which threatened to wipe out Wambugwe tribe in the neighboring villages in the 1960s.

When the European farmers settled, they recruited their laborers mostly from central and western Tanzania. These people still form the core of their workforce today, although others have joined their ranks.

Information of how the estates evolved and whether some people were displaced from the area in the past to pave way for white farmers has been lacking because the authorities in Babati may have viewed the situation differently.

The farms were seen as an extension of the settler economy based in Arusha and beyond, as most of their owners had more to do with Arusha in terms of marketing their produce, procuring supplies and farm inputs than Babati.

Other farms were owned by absentee landlords who had settled either in Arusha or abroad. Until the early 1970s, the areas had no schools, dispensaries or local government administration, leaving the landlords to wield unchecked power over their helpless laborers.

Extract ID: 3439

See also

Foden, Giles Mimi and Toutou Go Forth: The Bizarre Battle of Lake Tanganyika
Extract Date: Tuesday September 21, 2004

Flies, fever and farce

The Guardian

The African Queen is renowned as one of the toughest and craziest shoots in cinematic history. But it was nothing compared to the first world war British naval escapade which lay behind the film, as Giles Foden's new book reveals

At one point in John Huston's 1951 film The African Queen, starring Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn, Bogie gets covered in flies. A crude special effect (the insects are plastered on the lens), it is nevertheless one of the links between the film and the true story behind it: a British navy campaign on Lake Tanganyika in 1915 which saw 28 men haul two motorboats with the unlikely names of Mimi and Toutou through the wilds of the Congo.

At the start of the first world war, German warships controlled Lake Tanganyika. The British had no ships there. This mattered: it was the longest lake in the world, and of great strategic importance. The Admiralty ordered the 28 men, mostly volunteers, to take control of it. They were a strange bunch - one was addicted to Worcester sauce (as an aperitif), another was a former racing driver - but the strangest of all of them was their skirt-wearing, tattoo-covered commander, Geoffrey Spicer-Simson.

In The African Queen, which was based on a novel by CS Forester, published in 1935, Bogart and Hepburn are en route to sink a German battleship on a fictionalised central African lake, when the insects strike. In real life, Spicer-Simson was witness to a great eruption of flies on the surface of Lake Tanganyika. He and his men saw a series of sky-tall funnels wheeling across the waves. They rose hundreds of feet in crooked stems, then spread out at the top, mounting in eddies as they joined the clouds.

Typically, Spicer-Simson maintained that the swarming masses were water-spouts until the evidence they were insects could be gainsaid no longer. In fact, they were the famous kungu flies of central Africa that Livingstone had noted on his travels. Both a local delicacy (baked in a loaf) and a death trap to fishermen (sweeping up their boats in tornados or suffocating them), the flies' eggs had risen from the lakebed, nearly a mile below.

Hatching as the navy men watched, the kungu whirled across the lake; or, their short lives over, fell dead on the surface of the water - just as they would do 36 years later when Huston, his cameraman Jack Cardiff and still photographer Arthur Lemon tried to keep the rackety show of The African Queen shoot afloat, 400 miles to the north on Lake Albert.

According to Lemon: "We lived on an old paddle-steamer called the Lugard II, which had been art directed to look like a German gunboat - the one that eventually gets blown up in the film... Each evening, as the sun went down, lake flies would hatch out and swarm everywhere. Everything on the boat had to be shut up tight. They only survived 30 minutes or so and then died and fell back on to the surface of the water. Great for the Nile perch who would swim along like vacuum cleaners and scoop them up for dinner. Some of these fish were huge."

Huston was a difficult man to work for. Clint Eastwood's 1990 fictional film about the shoot, White Hunter, Black Heart, gives a good idea of his macho posturing. But compared to Spicer-Simson, he was an easygoing milksop. Vainglorious and vindictive, Spicer (as he was known) took every opportunity to show off the tattoos of snakes and butterflies that covered his thighs, arms and torso. Nor did he ever lose the chance to browbeat his men, barracking them with bogus tales of his own bravery in various parts of the world.

Spicer had always wanted to be a hero. He would have settled for admiral. But a series of catastrophic errors had left him the oldest lieutenant commander in the navy, which he had joined at the age of 14. By the start of the war he had already lost three ships through stupid mishaps. He was given a desk job to keep him out of trouble. Such was the state of Spicer's fortunes when, on April 21 1915, a big-game hunter called John Lee arrived in London with an appointment to see Admiral Sir Henry Jackson. Lee had great experience of Lake Tanganyika. He also had a scheme to bring it under British control.

Lee explained to the admiral that the Germans had two steamers under military orders on Lake Tanganyika: the 60-tonne Hedwig and the 45-tonne Kingani. Lee's plan to attack the German vessels was simple in conception but difficult in practice: if two fast British motor boats could be sent to South Africa, then by rail to the Belgian Congo and dragged to the lake, they could sink or disable the slower Hedwig and Kingani. Sir Henry agreed to the plan.

There was much discussion as to who was to lead the Naval Africa Expedition, as it was named, but in the end it was a case of needs must. The navy was in turmoil. First Sea Lord Winston Churchill had just been sacked because of the Gallipoli debacle, which had left the service short of officers. There weren't many options.

So when Spicer volunteered, he was given the appointment, despite still being in disgrace. His fortunes were about to change. Within a year he would be being worshipped as a deity by an African tribe. Within two years his name would be plastered over British newspapers.

The liner carrying the Naval Africa Expedition arrived safely in Cape Town, South Africa, on July 2 1915. The two motor boats, HMS Mimi and HMS Toutou (as Spicer had whimsically christened them after the navy had rejected his first-choice names, Cat and Dog) were put on goods trucks in a railway siding, ready for travel.

On August 5, nearly two months after they had set out from England, Spicer's crew reached Fungurume, deep in the Belgian Congo. It was just a few sheds in the jungle, with piles of steel railway track and wooden sleepers lying about.

To the right and the left of them was rough bush; in front lay the forbidding Mitumba mountains, which they would have to cross. Mimi and Toutou were lifted off the train on to special trailers. Two enormous steam-traction engines would drag them up the escarpment: a team of 1,400 Africans had begun clearing a road.

By August 18, the ox-teams that were supposed to supplement the pulling power of the road locomotives had not yet arrived, but Spicer was impatient to get going. He gave the order to proceed. Belching smoke, the locomotives tugged their eight-tonne burdens up the track. The steam whistles of the engines blew and the African labourers chanted as Mimi was towed towards the first bridge. Within seconds of the first tractor coming on to it, it collapsed. Mimi and the loco had to be hauled out of the gulch below.

They had almost reached the first camping point, having covered six miles, when disaster struck again. Mimi's locomotive slipped off the edge of the track and began to fall away, the earthwork sliding, unable to carry the engine's weight. Stuck at an angle, the tractor had to be disconnected from Mimi again and pulled by the other engine till upright once more.

The oxen arrived but the days that followed were much the same, one accident following another under the penetrating sun. The struggle continued as, mile by mile, they crept towards the top of the Mitumbas. Every hour threatened the arrival of the rains, which would make their ascent impossible: neither wheels nor hooves would be able to cope with deep mud.

Hauled in this manner, 50 yards at a time, Mimi and Toutou finally reached the mountain-top. There, 6,400ft above sea level, they came to rest on a pleasant meadow-plateau. Crossing the 20-mile plateau was easy enough, except that a great many lions surrounded the camp at night. On September 12 they reached the other side and saw, far below them, the Lualaba or Upper Congo river, on which they would make the second part of their epic journey.

The river passage was 350 miles long. They kept hitting obstructions and were bitten by tsetse flies along the way. The men shot off their rifles at hippos and crocs. The boats often had to be towed by dug-out canoes or hauled over sandbanks by teams of African labourers. Sometimes they were loaded on Belgian steamers, like that in which Joseph Conrad had travelled up the river 25 years previously, on the trip that inspired his novella, Heart of Darkness; some of The African Queen was also filmed on the Lualaba.

Through heavy rain, Spicer saw Lake Tanganyika for the first time on October 27, more than four months since he had set out from London. Watched by Holo-Holo tribesmen, the expedition set up camp on the lakeshore. At last, Mimi and Toutou's great journey was over. Now they had to prepare for battle.

One morning soon after they arrived, a German boat was spotted on the horizon of the lake. In truth, this small paddle-steamer didn't look much of a challenge. But still, she was twice as long as Mimi or Toutou. Squinting through his field glasses, the expedition's medic, Dr Hanschell, noted that the gun of the ship, the Kingani, was trained on them, where they had lined up on cliffs above the lake. He looked around to ask Spicer what he thought, but the commander was nowhere to be seen.

At breakfast a day or two later someone told the doctor that he had seen the commander wearing a skirt. Hanschell assumed they were pulling his leg. But at that moment Spicer appeared, framed in the doorway. He was indeed wearing a skirt. It was made of lightweight khaki and came down to his knees. Spicer sat down at the breakfast table; nobody knew what to say.

"I designed it myself," Spicer announced eventually. "My wife makes 'em for me. Very practical for the hot weather."

On Boxing Day 1915, after a fierce battle on the lake, Mimi and Toutou captured the Kingani, killing its captain and two others. Once the boats came onshore, Spicer was mobbed by the thousands of Holo-Holo who had watched the action from the cliffs. They threw themselves prostrate before him or tried to touch his clothes, as if they wanted to worship him. Fighting them off, he went over to inspect the prize, stepping over the German corpses on the deck.

"Twelve hits out of 13 shells," he announced. "That's a pretty good show." And then, quite casually, Spicer bent over the captain's twisted body and calmly removed the dead man's signet ring. Over the next few days the Kingani was mended. Spicer renamed the ship HMS Fifi, which he thought went rather well with Mimi and Toutou.

With the Kingani captured, the expeditionaries turned their attention to the bigger Hedwig, sinking it on February 9 1916. With that Spicer thought his work was done. He had even managed to capture a German naval flag, the first of the whole war. And now the Holo-Holo began to worship him in earnest, bowing down before him and making his effigy in clay. Part of the reason for this was that they venerated a snake god: his tattoos tapped into the mythology. Mainly it was because he had defeated the Germans.

But he hadn't. Not long after, a much larger German ship, the Graf von Götzen, appeared on the horizon. At 1,200 tonnes, it was 20 times the size of the Hedwig. It seemed to make a mockery of Spicer's toy navy, and its appearance came around the same time as news that his younger brother had been killed on the Western Front. Spicer went to pieces and was invalided home.

The irony was, the Götzen was carrying only wooden decoy guns. Its real ones, being needed by German land troops, had been removed. Spicer could have taken it with Mimi and Toutou after all. For the rest of his life - he moved to Monte Carlo after the war, then to Canada, where he died in 1947 - he kept quiet about the Götzen, bragging noisily about the other ships instead.

The Götzen was eventually scuttled by its German captain in July 1916 after being bombed by Belgian aeroplanes. Its latter fate is perhaps the strangest part of the whole tale. In 1921 Churchill, back in the job of First Lord of the Admiralty, ordered the Götzen refloated. On Monday May 16 1927, she sailed again - rechristened the Liemba, the name given to Lake Tanganyika in Livingstone's time. She is still sailing up and down the lake to this day.

· Extracted from Mimi and Toutou Go Forth: The Bizarre Battle of Lake Tanganyika by Giles Foden, to be published by Michael Joseph on September 30 at £16.99.

To order a copy for £16.14 (RRP £16.99) with free UK p & p, call the Guardian Book Service on 0870 836 0875, or go to www.guardian.co.uk/bookshop

It will be Book of the Week on Radio 4 in the week beginning October 25.

Extract ID: 4771
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