Travels Of Richard And John Lander Travels in West Africa (Congo Francais, Corisco and Cameroons) by Mary H. Kingsley




















 -   Then, when you have done this,
you may abandon the French plan, and gradually develop the trade in
an English - Page 610
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Then, When You Have Done This, You May Abandon The French Plan, And Gradually Develop The Trade In An English Manner, But Not In The English Manner A La Sierra Leone. But Do Your Pioneer Work First.

There is a very excellent substratum for English pioneer work on our Coasts in the trading community, for trade is the great key to the African's heart, and everywhere the English trader and his goods stand high in West African esteem.

This pioneer work must be undertaken, or subsidised by the Government as it has been in the French possessions, for the West Coast does not offer those inducements to the ordinary traveller that, let us say, East Africa with its magnificent herds of big game, or the northern frontier of India, with its mountains and its interesting forms, relics, and monuments of a high culture, offer. Travel in West Africa is very hard work, and very unhealthy. There are many men who would not hesitate for a moment to go there, were the dangers of the native savagery the chief drawback; but they hesitate before a trip which means, in all probability, month after month of tramping through wet gloomy forests with a swamp here and there for a change, {465} and which will, the chances are 100 to 1, end in their dying ignominiously of fever in some wretched squalid village.

Reckless expenditure of money in attempts to open up the country is to be deprecated, for this hampers its future terribly, even if attended with partial success, the mortgage being too heavy for the estate, as the Congo Free State finances show; and if it is attended with failure it discourages further efforts.

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