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Travels in the Interior of Africa - Volume 2

Mungo Park

Book Overview: 

Mungo Park, a Scottish surgeon and explorer, was sent out by the 'Association for Promoting the Discovery of the Interior of Africa' after Major Houghton failed to return, to discover the if the River Niger was a tributary of either the river Senegal or Gambia in South Africa. This is the story of his first trip. The journey had many challenges, such as language, religions, imprisonment and robbery. Most of the trip he had nothing but his tattered clothes, a horse, a pocket compass and his hat where he kept his notes. After first following the Gambia River, he finally was the first European to reached the Niger River at Ségou. He continued along the Niger another 80 miles to Silla, where he had to turn around as he had no way of continuing without procuring more supplies. He then returned to England by boat, via America.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .I was a stranger, inquired whither I was going.  I told her I was going for Sego, but being benighted on the road, I wished to stay at the village until morning, and begged she would acquaint the dooty with my situation.  In a little time the dooty sent for me, and permitted me to sleep in a large baloon.

August 13. - About ten o’clock I reached a small village within half a mile of Sego, where I endeavoured, but in vain, to procure some provisions.  Every one seemed anxious to avoid me; and I can plainly perceive, by the looks and behaviour of the inhabitants, that some very unfavourable accounts had been circulated concerning me.  I was again informed that Mansong had sent people to apprehend me, and the dooty’s son told me I had no time to lose if I wished to get safe out of Bambarra.  I now fully saw the danger of my situation, and determined to avoid Sego altogether.  I accordingly mounted my horse, and taking the r. . . Read More

Community Reviews

This is a review of both volumes of Mungo Park's account of his 1796-97 journey to the River Niger.

Mungo Park (1771-1806) was a Scottish doctor who was one of the earliest European explorers of the African interior, and the very first to set eyes on the Niger in the interior of Africa and establi...more