• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Title Page
 Dedication
 Introduction
 Part I
 Part II
 Advertising














Group Title: Hunter's life among lions, elephants, and other wild animals of South Africa.
Title: A hunter's life among lions, elephants and other wild animals of South Africa
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00025079/00001
 Material Information
Title: A hunter's life among lions, elephants and other wild animals of South Africa
Physical Description: 2 v. in 1. : front., plates.|Derby ; 24 cm.New York,
Language: English
Creator: Gordon-Cumming, R ( Roualeyn ), 1820-1866
Publisher: H.W. Derby & co., .
Place of Publication: ti
Publication Date: By Roualeyn G|1860
 Subjects
Genre: non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00025079
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 001667516
oclc - 04960833
notis - AHX9327

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Page A i
        Page A ii
    Title Page
        Page A iii
        Page A iv
    Dedication
        Page A v
        Page A vi
    Introduction
        Page A vii
        Page A viii
        Page A ix
        Page A x
    Part I
        Page A 17
        Preparations for a hunting expedition etc.
            Page A 17
            Page A 18
            Page A 19
            Page A 20
            Page A 21
            Page A 22
            Page A 23
            Page A 24
            Page A 25
            Page A 26
            Page A 27
            Page A 28
            Page A 29
            Page A 30
            Page A 31
        Mysteries of inspanning, etc.
            Page A 32
            Page A 33
            Page A 34
            Page A 35
            Page A 36
            Page A 37
            Page A 38
            Page A 39
            Page A 40
            Page A 41
            Page A 42
            Page A 43
            Page A 44
            Page A 45
            Page A 46
            Page A 47
            Page A 48
            Page A 49
            Page A 50
        Fearful descent of De Buin's poort, etc.
            Page A 51
            Page A 52
            Page A 53
            Page A 54
            Page A 55
            Page A 56
            Page A 57
            Page A 58
            Page A 59
            Page A 60
            Page A 61
            Page A 62
            Page A 63
            Page A 64
            Page A 65
            Page A 66
            Page A 67
            Page A 68
            Page A 69
            Page A 70
            Page A 71
            Page A 72
        A bustard shot, etc.
            Page A 73
            Page A 74
            Page A 75
            Page A 76
            Page A 77
            Page A 78
            Page A 79
            Page A 80
            Page A 81
            Page A 82
            Page A 83
            Page A 84
            Page A 85
            Page A 86
            Page A 87
        Departure from Colesberg, etc.
            Page A 88
            Page A 89
            Page A 90
            Page A 91-92
            Page A 93
            Page A 94
            Page A 95
            Page A 96
            Page A 97
            Page A 98
            Page A 99
            Page A 100
            Page A 101
        Hard chase of an oryx, etc.
            Page A 102
            Page A 103
            Page A 104
            Page A 105
            Page A 106
            Page A 107
            Page A 108
            Page A 109
            Page A 110
            Page A 111
            Page A 112
            Page A 113
            Page A 114
            Page A 115
        Leave beer vley, etc.
            Page A 116
            Page A 117
            Page A 118
            Page A 119
            Page A 120
            Page A 121
            Page A 122
            Page A 123
            Page A 124
            Page A 125
            Page A 126
            Page A 127
            Page A 128
            Page A 129
            Page A 130
            Page A 131
            Page A 132
            Page A 133
            Page A 134
        We leave stink vonteyn and reach the Vaal river, etc.
            Page A 135
            Page A 136
            Page A 137
            Page A 138
            Page A 139
            Page A 140
            Page A 141
            Page A 142
            Page A 143
            Page A 144
            Page A 145
            Page A 146
            Page A 147
            Page A 148
            Page A 149
            Page A 150
            Page A 151
            Page A 152
        The Riet River, etc.
            Page A 153
            Page A 154
            Page A 155
            Page A 156
            Page A 157
            Page A 158
            Page A 159
            Page A 160
            Page A 161
            Page A 162
            Page A 163
            Page A 164
            Page A 165
            Page A 166
            Page A 167
            Page A 168
            Page A 169
            Page A 170
            Page A 171
            Page A 172
            Page A 173
            Page A 174
            Page A 175
            Page A 176
        Boer encampment, etc.
            Page A 177
            Page A 178
            Page A 179
            Page A 180
            Page A 181
            Page A 182
            Page A 183
            Page A 184
            Page A 185
            Page A 186
            Page A 187
            Page A 188
            Page A 189
            Page A 190
            Page A 191
            Page A 192
            Page A 193
            Page A 194
            Page A 195
            Page A 196
        Motito, etc.
            Page A 197
            Page A 198-199
            Page A 200
            Page A 201
            Page A 202
            Page A 203
            Page A 204
            Page A 205
            Page A 206
            Page A 207
            Page A 208
            Page A 209
            Page A 210
            Page A 211
            Page A 212
            Page A 213
            Page A 214
            Page A 215
            Page A 216
            Page A 217
            Page A 218
            Page A 219
            Page A 220
        My Hottentots object to advance further into the interior, etc.
            Page A 221
            Page A 222
            Page A 223
            Page A 224
            Page A 225
            Page A 226
            Page A 227
            Page A 228
            Page A 229
            Page A 230
            Page A 231
            Page A 232
            Page A 233
            Page A 234
            Page A 235
            Page A 236
            Page A 237
            Page A 238
            Page A 239
            Page A 240
        The guides try to mislead me, etc.
            Page A 241
            Page A 242
            Page A 243
            Page A 244
            Page A 245
            Page A 246
            Page A 247
            Page A 248
            Page A 249
            Page A 250
            Page A 251
            Page A 252
            Page A 252a
            Page A 253
            Page A 254
            Page A 255
            Page A 256
        The Bamangwato mountains, etc.
            Page A 257
            Page A 258
            Page A 259
            Page A 260
            Page A 261
            Page A 262
            Page A 263
            Page A 264
            Page A 265
            Page A 266
            Page A 267
            Page A 268
            Page A 269
            Page A 270
            Page A 271
            Page A 272
            Page A 273
            Page A 274
            Page A 275
            Page A 276
            Page A 277
            Page A 278
            Page A 279
            Page A 280
            Page A 281
            Page A 282
            Page A 283
            Page A 284
        Take leave of Sicomy, etc.
            Page A 285
            Page A 286
            Page A 287
            Page A 288
            Page A 289
            Page A 290
            Page A 291
            Page A 292
            Page A 293
            Page A 294
            Page A 295
            Page A 296
            Page A 297
            Page A 298
            Page A 299
            Page A 300
            Page A 301
            Page A 302
            Page A 303
            Page A 304
            Page A 305
            Page A 306
            Page A 307
            Page A 308
        Elephant spooring with the natives, etc.
            Page A 309
            Page A 310
            Page A 311
            Page A 312
            Page A 313
            Page A 314
            Page A 315
            Page A 316
            Page A 317
            Page A 318
            Page A 319
            Page A 320
            Page A 321
            Page A 322
            Page A 323
            Page A 324
            Page A 325
            Page A 326
    Part II
        Page B i
        Page B ii
        Page B iii
        Page B iv
        Table of contents
            Page B v
            Page B vi
            Page B vii
            Page B viii
        We march from Sabié, etc.
            Page B 9
            Page B 10
            Page B 11
            Page B 12
            Page B 13
            Page B 14
            Page B 15
            Page B 16
            Page B 17
            Page B 18
            Page B 19
            Page B 20
            Page B 21
            Page B 22
            Page B 23
            Page B 24
            Page B 25
        Turn my wagons toward the colony, etc.
            Page B 26
            Page B 27
            Page B 28
            Page B 29
            Page B 30
            Page B 31
            Page B 32
            Page B 33
            Page B 34
            Page B 35
            Page B 36
            Page B 37
            Page B 38
            Page B 39
            Page B 40
            Page B 41
        All my colonial servants desert me, etc.
            Page B 42
            Page B 43
            Page B 44
            Page B 45
            Page B 46
            Page B 47
            Page B 48
            Page B 49
            Page B 50
            Page B 51
            Page B 52
            Page B 53
            Page B 54
            Page B 55
            Page B 56
            Page B 57
            Page B 58
            Page B 59
            Page B 60
        Arrive at Sichely's Kraal, etc.
            Page B 61
            Page B 62
            Page B 63
            Page B 64
            Page B 65
            Page B 66
            Page B 67
            Page B 68
            Page B 69
            Page B 70
            Page B 71
            Page B 72
            Page B 73
        Set out again for the far interior, etc.
            Page B 74
            Page B 75
            Page B 76
            Page B 77
            Page B 78
            Page B 79
            Page B 80
            Page B 81
            Page B 82
            Page B 83
            Page B 84
            Page B 85
            Page B 86
            Page B 87
            Page B 88
            Page B 89
            Page B 90
            Page B 91
            Page B 92
            Page B 93
        A lion shot from my watching-hole at midnight, etc.
            Page B 94
            Page B 95
            Page B 96
            Page B 96a
            Page B 97
            Page B 98
            Page B 99
            Page B 100
            Page B 101
            Page B 102
            Page B 103
            Page B 104
            Page B 105
            Page B 106
            Page B 107
            Page B 108
            Page B 109
            Page B 110
            Page B 110a
            Page B 111
        Sichely's Kraal again, etc.
            Page B 112
            Page B 113
            Page B 114
            Page B 115
            Page B 116
            Page B 117
            Page B 118
            Page B 119
            Page B 120
            Page B 121
            Page B 122
            Page B 123
            Page B 124
            Page B 125
            Page B 126
        Start on another elephant-shooting expedition, etc.
            Page B 127
            Page B 128
            Page B 129
            Page B 130
            Page B 131
            Page B 132
            Page B 133
            Page B 134
            Page B 135
            Page B 136
            Page B 137
            Page B 138
            Page B 139
            Page B 140
            Page B 141
        We cross the Limpopo, etc.
            Page B 142
            Page B 143
            Page B 144
            Page B 145
            Page B 146
            Page B 147
            Page B 148
            Page B 149
            Page B 150
            Page B 151
            Page B 152
            Page B 153
            Page B 154
            Page B 155
        Seleka's town among the rocks, etc.
            Page B 156
            Page B 157
            Page B 158
            Page B 159
            Page B 160
            Page B 161
            Page B 162
            Page B 163
            Page B 164
            Page B 165
            Page B 166
            Page B 167
            Page B 168
            Page B 169
        We trek down the Limpopo, etc.
            Page B 170
            Page B 171
            Page B 172
            Page B 173
            Page B 174
            Page B 175
            Page B 176
            Page B 177
            Page B 178
            Page B 179
            Page B 180
            Page B 181
            Page B 182
            Page B 183
            Page B 184
            Page B 185
            Page B 186
            Page B 187
            Page B 188
        Paapas fountein, etc.
            Page B 189
            Page B 190
            Page B 191
            Page B 192
            Page B 193
            Page B 194
            Page B 195
            Page B 196
            Page B 197
            Page B 198
            Page B 199
            Page B 200
            Page B 201
            Page B 202
            Page B 203
            Page B 204
            Page B 205
        We march up the Limpopo, etc.
            Page B 206
            Page B 207
            Page B 208
            Page B 209
            Page B 210
            Page B 211
            Page B 212
            Page B 213
            Page B 214
            Page B 215
            Page B 216
            Page B 217
            Page B 218
            Page B 219
            Page B 220
            Page B 221
            Page B 222
        Leave the Potsquaine country, etc.
            Page B 223
            Page B 224
            Page B 225
            Page B 226
            Page B 227
            Page B 228
            Page B 229
            Page B 230
            Page B 231
            Page B 232
            Page B 233
            Page B 234
            Page B 235
            Page B 236
            Page B 237
            Page B 238
            Page B 239
            Page B 240
        Start on my fifth and last expedition into the interior, etc.
            Page B 241
            Page B 242
            Page B 243
            Page B 244
            Page B 245
            Page B 246
            Page B 247
            Page B 248
            Page B 249
            Page B 250
            Page B 251
            Page B 252
            Page B 253
            Page B 254
            Page B 255
            Page B 256
            Page B 257
            Page B 258
            Page B 259
            Page B 260
            Page B 261
            Page B 262
            Page B 263
            Page B 264
        Mr. Orpen and myself in a helpless condition, etc.
            Page B 265
            Page B 266
            Page B 267
            Page B 268
            Page B 269
            Page B 270
            Page B 271
            Page B 272
            Page B 273
            Page B 274
            Page B 274a
            Page B 275
            Page B 276
            Page B 277
            Page B 278
            Page B 279
            Page B 280
            Page B 281
            Page B 282
            Page B 283
            Page B 284
            Page B 285
        The pass of God, etc.
            Page B 286
            Page B 287
            Page B 288
            Page B 289
            Page B 290
            Page B 291
            Page B 292
            Page B 293
            Page B 294
            Page B 295
            Page B 296
            Page B 297
            Page B 298
            Page B 299
            Page B 300
            Page B 301
            Page B 302
            Page B 303
    Advertising
        Page B 305
        Page B 306
        Page B 307
        Page B 308
Full Text


















ijl.












W.Ilf. it~h 1) 1 A Kln ~n On d
































Riding out the best bull Elephant. Vol. 1. p. 298,











HUNTER'S LIFE


AMONG


LIONS, ELEPHANTS,


AND) .,


OTHER WILD ANIMALS OF SOUTH AFRICA.


BY ROUALEYN GORDON CUMMIMG

WITH AN INTRODUCTION
BY BAYARD TAYLOR.

CnMPT.ETE.
Tyw' 'o" i Ms: o ..




o o n


NEW YORK:
DERBY & JACKSON, 498 BROADWAY*
1860.







79: 2- % #













." r,- / '.'* <
-I G) /
fi ^^ 3


* 0 *.
*.00 0 0

..........















T& HIIS GRACE THE DUKE OF ARGYLL.


MIY PEAR DUKE, '
I dedicate my ADVENTURES IN AFRICA" to -your
grace for two reasons-to mark my respect as a kins-
man, and because I know the interest you take in the
ports of the field and in the habits of wild animals.
SMy volumes lay claim to'no other merit than that
f a faithful narration of facts as they occurred; and
having been written far away from literary appliances,
And often on occasions when the cravings of hunger
Were a more pressing consideration than the graces of
composition, I trust to your indulgence to overlook in
the success of my rifle the failure of*my pen.
I am always, my dear duke,
Four affectionate kinsman,
RoUA:ilE GORDON CUMM8O.
tAlyro

AZ/tf-












INTRODUCTORY SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR.


MR. ROUALEYN GORDON CUMMING, the Nimrod of modern'
times, is a native of Scotland, and connected with the noble
family of Argyll. His passion for the chase seems to have
developed itself very early in youth, for long before he went
to Eton to complete his studies, his room was a museum of
hunting trophies. In the county of Moray, in the western
part of Scotland, where his boyhood was spent, he was soon
noted for his indefatigable devotion to the sports of the field,
and his fondness for natural history. "Salmon-fishing and
Jeer-stalking," he says, "were my favorite amusements; and
luring these early wanderings by wood and stream, the
strong love of sport and admiration of nature in her wildest
and most attractive forms, became with me an all-absorbing
feeling, and my greatest possible enjoyment was to pass whole
days, and many a summer night in solitude, where, undis-
turbed, I might contemplate the silent grandeur of the forest
and the ever-varying beauty of the scenes around."
After completing his studies at Eton, he entered the Indian
army, and was attached to the Madras Light Cavalry. Sail
ng in 1839 to join his regiment, he touched at the Cape of
xood Hope on the voyage out, and there made his first essays
n that field wherein he has since become so famous. In
"*






V11i INTRODUCTORY SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR.


India he hunted tigers, buffaloes, and wild elephants, at
would no doubt have attained a reputation for tiger-shootin
equal to that of G6rard, the Algerian lion-hunter, had not tl
climate proved prejudicial to his constitution. For this reason
ne retired from the service and returned home, where h
resumed his old pastime of deer-stalking on the Scottish hill
But he was a born savage, and after the taste of fiercer an
nobler game which he had enjoyed, soon grew weary of suc:
tame and secure sport. He longed for the unrestrained free
dom of the wilderness, and we soon find him procuring
commission in the Royal Veteran Newfoundland Companies
with the idea that he would thus be brought nearer to thq
"ravages" of the Moose, and the pasture-grounds of the Bison
He soon found, however, that his opportunities of hunting
even the caribou, or reindeer-almost the only game in New-
foundland-were very small, and he finally effected an
exchange into the Cape Riflemen, and in 1843 returned to
South Africa and entered upon that career which is recorded
in the following pages.
While attached to the Riflemen he accompanied a military
expedition into the country of the Amaponda Caffres, and
there formed-the design of devoting himself to the chase and
penetrating into those rich Hunting-grounds to the north,
where the crack of the English rifle had never yet been
heard. Selling out his commission, he procured the outfit
of a pioneer, and commenced the barbaric, adventurous life
of a hunter, which in the course of five years yielded him
trophies sufficient to freight a vessel. During this time he
was not only a hunter, but an explorer. In the summer of
1844 h. penetrated to the Bamangwato Mountains, in lat.






INTRODUCTORY SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR.


200 S, and was the first European to enter that field in waich
r. Livingstone has since achieved so much renown. In fact,
the Bamangwato country, which is about two hundred miles
tthe north-west of the frontier missionary station of Kolo-
beug, is but a short distance from the great lake N'gami,
which Dr. Livingstone afterwards discovered. Mr. Gumming
made five journeys into the interior, and by his tact and fear-
lessness no doubt .smoothed the way of the explorers who
succeeded him.
SOn these journeys he kept a journal of his exploits and
adventures, noting them down upon the spot, while the
impression was yet fresh in his mind. Iis work thhs pos-
sesses an air of reality, which brings the scenes vividly before
Sour eyes, as we read, and fully atones for any lack of grace
in his style. "The hand, wearied all day with grasping the
rifle," he says, "is not the best suited for wielding the pen."
rut if the hand is weary, the hunter's heart is not; and the
elish with which he relates his deeds of butchery fascitiates,
while it often shocks the reader. We see the savage rather
than the sportsman, and this rude, unreserved, yet wonder-
fully graphic and picturesque language, is the best evidence
of the honesty of the narrator. Mr. Cumming has frequently
been accused of exaggeration; and many of his exploits are
truly of an astounding character; but the life of every
Rocky Mountain trapper presents incidents as remarkable,
and we see no reason fogidoubting his veracity. Those who
know the man personally, have assured us that they place
implicit faith in his narrative. The museum of trophies,
which he has exhibited in London, for the last four or five
years, furnishes additional confirmation of his mfvellous





S INTRODUCTORY SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR.


annrg and luck. His work is unique of its kind, and it wi
be long before we have another hunter, who, to such a rounu
of adventures, shall possess equal skill in relating them.
Mr. Gordon Cumming is a tall, rather slender person
about thirty-eight years of age. For some time after hit
return from South Africa, he preserved a barbaric indiffe
rence to conventionalities, and astonished Regent Street, bj
promenading in a sailor's blue shirt, Highland kilt, and a bell
garnished with knives and pistols, while his hair, which
rivalled Absalom's, was confined in a bag of silk netting.
Many curious and characteristic anecdotes of him are related
*a by his' London acquaintances. At present he is nightly
S repeating, to crowded audiences, the story of his hunting
i ife, illustrated with panoramic views, and with the skulls
horns, and hides of his slaughtered victims. A London
Editor says: "He talks, with the easy familiarity of a
Doudoir, of life-tussles with cobras and lions, making small
drawing-room jokes about his old enemies, and occasionally
catching up, a date by easy reference to his hundredth
elephant encounter."

B. T,
'1ew YoRK, .November, 1855.










FIVE YEARS' HUNTING

VENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


CHAPTER I.
Preparations for a Hunting Expedition Cape Traders Traveling
Trader at a Farm-Dangers of a Trader's Life-Articles for Barter-
Dissuasions from the.Enterprise-My Outfit -Hunting Rheebok -
Wild Flowers.

HAVING resolved to make a hunting expedition into 4 ".
the'interior of Southern .Africa, my first object was to
seek out some experienced person, able to give me the
necessary information as to what purchases I should
require to make in the way of wagons and oxen, and
as to my outfit in general, and I accordingly pitched
upon an individual of the name of Murphy, a trader in
the interior, who, I had reason to believe, was better
acquainted than any other' person in Grahamstown
with the frontiers of the colony, and the adjoining ter-
ritories of the Griclua and Bechuana tribes, situated
beyond the Great Orange River. With this person I
had already had the pleasure of becoming acquainted
during the short timrnilvas quartered in Grahamstown
in the rronth of July3 having been introduced to him
by another trader, a man from mry own land of Moray,
famous among the Dutch Boers about and beyond the
frontiers. This man's name was Andrew Thompson,
of Forres, one of three brothers, all'of whom followed
the same adventurous line of'life, and were aA ste ,,
-. .. .










FIVE YEARS' HUNTING

VENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


CHAPTER I.
Preparations for a Hunting Expedition Cape Traders Traveling
Trader at a Farm-Dangers of a Trader's Life-Articles for Barter-
Dissuasions from the.Enterprise-My Outfit -Hunting Rheebok -
Wild Flowers.

HAVING resolved to make a hunting expedition into 4 ".
the'interior of Southern .Africa, my first object was to
seek out some experienced person, able to give me the
necessary information as to what purchases I should
require to make in the way of wagons and oxen, and
as to my outfit in general, and I accordingly pitched
upon an individual of the name of Murphy, a trader in
the interior, who, I had reason to believe, was better
acquainted than any other' person in Grahamstown
with the frontiers of the colony, and the adjoining ter-
ritories of the Griclua and Bechuana tribes, situated
beyond the Great Orange River. With this person I
had already had the pleasure of becoming acquainted
during the short timrnilvas quartered in Grahamstown
in the rronth of July3 having been introduced to him
by another trader, a man from mry own land of Moray,
famous among the Dutch Boers about and beyond the
frontiers. This man's name was Andrew Thompson,
of Forres, one of three brothers, all'of whom followed
the same adventurous line of'life, and were aA ste ,,
-. .. .






18 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
hard-working, and determined young men as might bE
met with throughout the colony.
As, in the course of the following pages, I may have
occasion to allude to these traders, and others of a
similar avocation, it will, perhaps, be as well to give
the reader a sketch of.the manner in which their oc-
cupation is conducted. Each trader is supposed-to be
the proprietor of one or two ox-wagons. These they |
"load up," from the large stores of th> merchants in
Grahamstown and Port Elizabeth, with every species
of merchandise which the far-dwelling isolated Dutch
Boers are likely to require. So supplied, they set out
n their long journey, which usually occupies from six
' to eight months; at the end of which they return to
Sthe colony, enriched with immense droves of sleek oxen
and fat wethers, selected from the numerous herds and
flocks of the pastoral dwellers in the interior. The
wagons of a trader generally contain every requisite
for a farmer's establishment: groceries, hardware, bales
of cloth and canvas, haberdashery, saddlery, crockery
-in short, every thing, from an awl for the Boer to
mend his "feldt schoens" or country shoes, to a roll
of cherry-colored or sky-blue ribbon to tie up the bonny
brown locks of his fair daughters, whose beauty, like
that of Skye terriers, I fear, in many cases, consists in
their ugliness. They, however, sadly lack the "dega-
gde" appearance of the Skye terrier, as their general
air and gait might be more'aptly likened .to a yard of
pump-water.
As the trader advances up the country and effects
exchanges, "he leaves the, cattle or sheep which he has
bartered in charge of their former master, picking them
up on his return southward. When all his goods are
disposed -of, he generally'winds up his barter by ex-






CAPE TRADERS AND THEIR WAGONS.


hanging, the wagon or wagons which bore them for
msh or oxen, or both, and then, purchasing a horse, he
*etprns in light marching order to the colony.
The price which a trader gives for a wagon is usu-
dly from 40 to 60, and in war times often a thou-
sand rix dollars, or 75. The number of oxen which
e usually obtains for it at the close of his journey is
rom forty to fifty, and these he is supposed to select
himself. The value of the wagon is partly dependent
m the character of the tent. Tents are of two kinds;
,he one being coarsely yet strongly constructed of green
roughs fitting into iron staples, along the sides of the
wagon, and lashed together with strips of green hide
so as to form a succession of arches overhead. These
are kept in their position by means of long straight
hands laid all along the outside of the arches, the
whole frame-work being very strongly secured by the
afore-mentioned strips of green hide. On the top of
this are placed coarse Kaffir mats made of reeds, which
act as a Scotchman (to use a sea-faring phrase) to keep
the wagon-sail, which is of stout canvas, from chafing.
The other variety of tent is of-a less homely build, and
is termed by the colonists a cap-tent wagon. It re-
quires the hand of a skillful wagon-builder, and is much
more elaborately finished, the wood which supports and
composes the tent being all neatly sawed and planed,
and fastened together with iron rivets.
This description of-*wagc n is preferred by the aris-
tocracy among the Boers, as presenting a more dis-
tingu6 appearance when they drive their fraus and
children on a round of visits, which they are constant-.
ly doing, or when flocking to the Nachmal," or com-
munion, which happens three or four*times in the year:
The former, or common wand tent, however, possessed.






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICL.


a great advantage over the cap tent, inasmuch as, in
the first place, it is cheaper by 410, and, secondly, if
broken in a capsize, which in Cape traveling is an affair
of common occurrence, it is easily repaired on the spot
whereas the cap-tent wagon, if once upset, is irretrievi
ably ruined.
When a trader arrives on a Boer's farm, he halts and
walks up to the door to inquire where he is to out-
span," or unyoke the oxen, and also in what direction
the oxen are to be driven to graze. At the door he is
met by the baas, or master, generally pipe in mouth,
who, cordially greeting him with one hand, raises his
hat from his head with the other The Boers lay great
stress on this piece of etiquette, which has to be gone
through with a whole string of juvenile Boers follow-
ing in the rear, each incased in a very roomy pair of
inexpressibles, and crowned with an immense broad-
rimmed tile, nearly half the.size of its wearer. Per-i
mission to outspan being obtained, and a few complip
mentary speeches interchanged, the trader inquires of
the Boer if he has any fat oxen to handle or barter, to
which the Boer either at bnce replies in the negative,
or more commonly says, "I do not know. What have
you got on your wagon?" The trader answers, "
have got a little of every thing,-and all of the very best
quality, and you shall have any thing you require as
low as a trader can possibly sell it. I shall presently
unload a little for your inspection." The Boer politely
says, No, no, mynheer, you must not oflload; it would
grieve me that mynheer should exert himself so much;"
to which the. trader replies, "It is no trouble; we are
accustomed to do it, and it is our business." The
trader then instructs his knecht, or head servant, to
nake.a parade of the goods, and he then accompanies

A






THE TRADER AT A FARM.


the Boer into the house, where dinner will shortly mak6
its appearance, to which the Boer invariably, in the
most hospitable manner, makes every white stranger
welcome. Here, if the trader is wide awake to his own
interest, he will pay marked attention to the Noe or
frau, as no bargain or transaction of any nature can be
ratified with a Dutchman without her full concurrence
and approval. The Dutch are particularly cleanly in
their establishments and cooking, and, moreover, pos-
sess a very fair notion of the culinary art, their tables in
general being graced with several very- excellent and
substantial dishes. When dinner is over, all hands re-
sort to the wagon and overhaul the merchandise, where
it is ten to one but the Noe will find about fifty differ-
ent articles which she will prevail upon her husband
to believe indispensable in the private-economy of his
establishment. Thus, when handling" once begins
it often goes on briskly, and from a Boer who at the
outset declared himself independent of the trader's sup-
plies, as many as two or three, or even half a dozen,
fat oxen may be obtained.
As the trader knows well from past experience that
the Boer will be sure to endeavor'to abate his prices, he
makes a point of asking a little more than he intends
to take, so as to be able to give in to the Boer's im-
portunities, who, with a sly wink at his wife, congratu-
lates himself on his shrewdness, and flatters himself
that he has run a hard bargain.
When the trader has collected all his cattle, he drives
them by steady marches of from twenty to thirty miles
in the twenty-four hours, which are performed chiefly
during the night, to Grahamstown or Beaufort, where
he disposes of them to butchers. At the former place
they are purchased for the use of the town, and by the






22 ADVENTURESS l4 SOUTH ArRICA.

government contractors for the supply of the troops. n
At Beaufort, which is on the high road to Cape Town, if
they are purchased for the supply of the Cape Town i
market. The payments for the cattle are seldom, if;
ever, made in hard cash, the poor trader having to con- r
tent himself-with approved bills, drawn at six and nine
months, which in too many cases are never honored,
the defaulter being found either bankrupt, or to have -
bolted for England or California. The life of a trader
is hard and harassing, and le is often liable to very
heavy losses by deaths from severe drought, disterm-
pers, and other causes; also from the chances of war,
Soxen straying and being found no more, overstocked
markets, and non-payments as above, besides the dan-
ger to which he is exposed from the attacks of wild
beasts. 'During the time that he is engaged in driving
his oxen, his rest is necessarily broken and disturbed,
and, being compelled to watch his cattle every hour of
the night, in all weathers, he is obliged always to have
his clothes on, and to sleep when he can, after the man-
*ner of sea-captains in bad weather, who hang their nose
on to a ratlin, and so take* a nap. As an instance of
the injury from chances of war, I may here allude to
the severe losses sustained by my friend Mr. Peter
Thompson, who, during the war which ravaged the
colony in the years 1846 and 1847, was returning to
Grahamstown with a large herd of some hundred fine
oxen, the well-earned proceeds of a laborious and toil-
some expedition, when he was attacked in De Bruin's
Poort, a rugged and densely-wooded ravine, within one
march of Grahamstown, by a band of the marauding
Amaponda'Kaffirs, armed with guns and assagais, who
swept off the whole of his drove, he himself barely
escaping with his life.






ARTICLES OF COMMERCE. 23
In years when the prices of cattle are low, these
traders occasionally vary their line of march, and, for-
saking the Boers for-a season, they load up- a suitable
cargo, and direct their course for the Bechuana tribes,
from whom they obtain ivory, karosses (skin cloaks),
rnd ostrich feathers, along with various curiosities, for
which they obtain a ready sale in theaGrahamstown
narket,.wh'ere good ivory averages from 4s. to 4s. 6d.
per pound. Karosses vary in price from 1 to 3 each,.
according to their size, kind, and. quality. Ostrich
feathers used to fetch from 5 to 6 per pound, but,
partly owing to the feathers being less worn by the
votaries of fashion in London, and partly to the lato
disturbances throughout Europe, the prices have great-
ly fallen.* The articles required for trading with the
Bechuana tribes consist of beads of all sizes and colors,
brass and copper wire, knives and hatchets, clothing
for both sexes, ammunition, guns, young cows, and she-
goats. The two latter the trader obtains in barter from
the Boers, Griqua and Koranna tribes,-more immedi-
ately adjacent to the colony. Some writers have er
roneously stated that snuff arid tobacco are a good cir-
culating medium among the tribes in Southern Africa,
ut in the course of my experience I can scarcely re-
nember having ever obtained the smallest article in
carter for either, not even a drink of milk. The natives
ave certainly no objection to receive these articles
hen given gratuitously, but are far too wide awake to
lace any great valae upon them. During my career
n Southern Africa I have had much experience i.n
Trading with the Bechuana tribes, and, as I shall have
ceasion to refer to my trading exploits in the course
From seventy-five to ninety good sized ostrich feathers weigh a

nd.
40





24 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
of my narrative, I have entered into the above particr.
.lars, that the reader may at the outset form an idea o
the manner in which these things are conducted.
On making inquiries, I had the pleasure to find tha,
contrary to aiy expectation, both Andrew Thompsoi
and Murphy were still in Grahamstown, where I ha:
left them about three months before, when I marched
thence into Caffraria with* my regiment; and the lal.
t4er, whom I found to be a confirmed tippler, was abli
in his few lucid moments to give me much valuable ir-
formation relative to the preparations which I required
to make in the way of purchasing oxen and wagons
engaging servants, &c., &c.; also various wrinkles ap
to the conduetifig of my establishment, the hours of
marching, and the line of country which I had chalked
out for'my first expedition. Poor Murphy! he was as
kind-hearted a creature as ever breathed.
From the 1st till the 22d of October I was actively
employed in making the necessary purchases and ari
rangements for my coming expedition, and in forward
Sing my affairs, in which Murphy, during his sober inl
tervals, most willingly assisted me. As the reader will
Observe, my establishment at my first outset was on
much more limited scale than upon subsequent expe
editions. This was partly owing to the uncertainty
which I felt as to the success of my sporting under
takings, and the length of time which I might feel in
clirTed to devote to this line of life. I was much in th(
dark as to what sport I might expect to realize, an
what difficulties I should have to encounter, in the tri
I was about to make; the truth being that I could no
find a single individual, either among the natives or th
military, who could in the smallest degree enlighte
me on the subject.
4P^






PREPARATIONS AND DISSUASIONS. &
The general impression among my military friends
\vas, that any game which remained in the interior
must have, ere then, retreated to such remote parts,
far away in the territories of savage tribes, as to be ut-
terly beyond the reach of any sportsman, however en-
terprising; *nd when they saw me bustling about,
making my purchases, they used to say to me, "It is
all nonsense your laying out your money in this way.
Why don't you rather go home at once to your own
country? We shall see you returning in a month or
two, like those fellows who went on a shooting trip last
year, with a coup-de-soleil and an attack of dysentery,
utterly disgusted with the country, and selling off all
these things on which you are now expending so much
capital."
The shooting party here alluded to consisted of one
officer of the 7th Dragoons, two of the 27th, and others
kho, having obtained a few weeks' leave, and burning
o distinguish themselves in a campaign against the
ferae of Southern Africa, had hired a wagon and pene-
rated as far as the Thebus Mountain, where for a few "
ays they enjoyed some good sport among the black
wildebeest and springboks which abound on the plains
surrounding that mountain; till, having broken the
stocks of their rifles in falls from their horses while im-
etuously "jaging" the game, they returned to head-
quarters, one suffering from coup-de-soleil, and the rest
trom dysentery brought on by drinking bad water, they
having been unfortunate in the vley beside which they
had fixed their encampment. My gallant friend Lieu-
tenant H- of the 91st, was one of the most urgent
in endeavoring to dissuade me from my steadfast pur-
pose of trekking up the country, and recommended me
rather to return with him. to.Englajid whither he was
Vo,. I-B ...w'.* : *. .:." ..
... .. .. .....






20 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.

/ about to proceed. He and I had sent in our resigna.
*'on of her majesty's service at the same time, and, fortu.
lately for us, by some mistake our papers were mislaid
at Cape Town, and not forwarded in the usual course,
whereby we gained several months' pay. H- who,
lke many others of the military, entertained a profound
disgust for the colony and every thing connected with
it, at first could hardly believe that I was in earnest
when I spoke of going up the country; and when con-
vinced that such was my determination, he said, with
a strong lisp which was habitual to him, Good G-,
Cummin! you are thurely mad to remain longer in
thith country after you have obtained leave to return
to dear old England. I athure you, I had rather be a
thoe-black in England than live in thith beathtly cou-.
try,"
Notwithstanding these friendly dissuasions on thp
part of my acquaintance, I continued to prosecute my
affairs so unremittingly, that on the 22d I considered
my manifold arrangements complete, and, being much
harassed and annoyed by the unavoidable delays tp
which 1 had been subjected, I was full of impatience t
make a start. These delays were in a great measure
.ccasioned by the weather, heavy and constant rains
naving fallen during the previous fourteen days, accon-
panied with a cold wind off the Southern Ocean. Thi ,
of necessity, materially interfered with and delayed ip
in my arrangements, and had also the effect of render
ing the country perfectly unfit for locomotion, in manr
places cutting up the roads with rugged, impassable
water-courses, and in low-lying districts converting
them into deep, impracticable quagmires.
It will here be necessary to give a detailed account
of my outfit, to.put.the rL.der at once in possession of

-: .,
.. *.-* : *:.
'*'-:.' ... .* *: :*: : : *.*:'*:* .






OUTFIT. 27
he extent and. nature of my establishment and camp
iyquipage. My first object was, of course, to secure
traveling wagon, and I had-the good fortune to obtain
gn excellent new cap-tent one, complete with all its
gear ready for inspanning, from Mr. Ogilvie, of Gra-
bamstown, for the sum of 60, which,-as it eventually
proved to be a right good one, was decidedly a bargain.
1 ver soon, however, found' out, as I extensively col-
ected specimens of natural history, that one wagon was
insufficient; and .npt, long after, in the town of Coles-
1eerg, on the frontiers of the colony, I purchased a sec-
ond, also a cap-tent wagon, with its necessary accom-
paniment, a span of oxen; and at a later period, as the
reader will subsequently learn I found it necessary to
purchase a third, and became the proprietor of consid-
r 1raby re than a hundred draught oxen.
m c'an English farmer in the vicinity of Grahams-
S:_pn I obtained a span of twelve excellent, well-trained,
black, zu0r-veldt oxen, which I judged suited for my
.'rork, they having been in the habit, with their late
master, of bringing in very heavy loads of wood to the
Grahamstown.market. Their price was 3 each; and
s it is not unusual to see an ox, in the best of spans,
Iock up on long marches, by Murphy's advice I pur,
asqedtwo spare oxen of Mr. Thompson.
My stud of horses as vet consisted of but two, which
had been my chargers in the regiment. These were
Sinon," aa stallion which I had bought of Major Good-
Ean of the 27th, and "The Cow," an excellent dark-
Srown gelding which I, had obtained from Colonel Som-
erset of "Ours." I did riot think it wise to lay out
lore money in horse-flesh in Grahamstown, asI .should
s ortly have to pass through the Hantam, where mest
f the Boers breed horses extensively, which are famed

MN~tm *as.-' """ //





28 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
S"...their spirit and hardiness throughout the colony. *
1- agedgd four serants--namely, an Englishman call
Long, as head-servant, a thorough Cockney, who, as.
afterward learned, had formerly been a cab-driver i
London, and whom I took into my service at Murphy's
recommendation, Long being supposed to possess a cer-
tain degree of experience, having penetrated as far as
Sthe banks of the Orange River on a trading excursion
on his own account; but his heart, as the event proved,
inclined more to worship at the shine of Venus than
at that of Diana. A certain little dark-eyed damse,
who acted as laundress to the military, and who was
employed all day in driving her mangle, seemed entir-
ly to engross his thoughts, Long frequently observing
that "there was that sweet little creature obliged to
drive a mangle who ought rather to'be sitting practi-
cing at her pihanne.' '
My other three servants were natives. A wagor
driver named Kleinboy, a stout, active Hottentot, wit
the high cheek bones and woolly head of his race, an I
who was quite au fail at his department. Like many
others of hisgiountrymen, he was subject to fitsof sulkS,
and much preferred reclining for hours under my wa4-
ons, orii .the shade of a bush practicing on his violi,
Sto looking after his master's wqrk. My leader's nam
S was Carollus: he was the third whom I had engage
in that capacity, the other two having absbonded. H
was a stout, powerful fellow, descended from the M
zambique races. He entered my service undercover
of night, having absconded from Kingsley of "Ours,
that gentleman, according to his assertiori, being in th
habit of administering a little wholesome correotio
with the jambok, which, on further acquaintance wit
nim, I had reason to believe he richly merited. M


.,J







SERVANTS AND STORES.


third native servant was Cobus, a Hottentot of light
weight, the son of a veteran in my regiment. He 'list-
ed in the capacity of after-rider, and proveC to be first-
rate in his calling, being the best horseman I met with
in South Africa. He also, like Kloinboy, was liable to
fits of sulkiness, through which I eventually lost him;
or on one occasion, finding it necessary to inflict on
im a summary chastisement, he deserted from my
service in consequence.*
The baggage, provisions, and general stores which I carried with
ie were as follows: Two sacks containing 300 lbs. of coffee, four quar-
er chests of tea, 300 lbs. of sugar, 300 lbs. of rice, 180 lbs. of meal,
00 lbs. of flour, five lbs. of pepper, 100 lbs. of salt, an anker of vinegar,
several large jars of pickles, half a dozen hams and cheeses, two cases of
gin, one anker of brandy, one half aum of Cape brandy, iron baking-pots
ith long legs, stewing and frying pans, sauce-pans and gridirons, tin
ater-buckets of various sizes, two large fagie" or water-casks, an ac
ompani.ment which no Cape wagon is ever without, two large flasks of
tar to be subsequently mixed with hard fat for greasing the wheels when
required, six dozen pocket knives, 24 boxes of snuff, 50 lbs. of tobacco,
I00 lbs. of white, coral, red, and bright blue beads of various sizes;
Tree dozen tinder-boxes ; one cwt. of brass and copper wire, which the
Aechuana tribes, especially those dwelling to the east, readily barter and
convert into ornaments for their legs and arms; two dozen sickles, two
spades, two shovels, one pickaxe, five superior American axes, two au-
gers, one stock and thirty-six bits, hatchets, planes, drawing knives, sev-
eral coarse chisels for wagon-work, a vice, blacksmith and carpenter's
hammers, and a variety of other tools appertaining to both these profes-
sions. A gross of awls, a gross of sail-needles, 50 hanks of sail-twine, two
tolts of sail-canvas, several rolls of stout woolen cloths, two dozen gown-
;ieces, six dozen Malay handkerchiefs; thread, needles, and buttons;
eady-made jackets and trowsers for my people, several dozen coarse
irts, Scotch bonnets, and cocker-nonnys (as for shoes, colonial servants
tre supposed to make them for themselves); a few medicines, arsenical
aoap, English and coarse Boer's soap. Also, one large bell-tent, one mat.
tress and bedding, one camp-table and chair, and my canteen, which
tiost fortunately I had resolved to retain when disposing of my other
military equipment: I found it a most serviceable and convenient ap.
pendage during my five years' wanderings n Southern Africa. My sad.
dlery consisted of two English hunting saddles, two common saddles for
servants, and one pack-saddle to convey venison to camp. My ordnance
Was asfolle ws: three double-barreled rifles by Purdey. William Morte.







jU ADVENTURES N SOUTH AFRICA..

While I was laying in those stores, I once or twicb
amused myself by riding in quest of rheebok in thd*
rugged and precipitous high grounds lying immediately
to the south of Grahamstown. On ohe of these occa
sions I was accompanied by my cousin, Colonel Camp
bell of the 91st (one of the bravest and most distin
guished officers in the late Kaffir war, and, withal, about
the. best rifle-shot and keenest sportsman then in th'
colony), a brother of Captain Campbell of'Skipness
the author t the "Old Forest-Ranger," a work highly
approved among Indian Nimrods. The rheebok is
species of antelope generally found in all mountain dis
tricts throughout Southern Africa, from Table Mount
ain to the latitude of Kuruman or New Litakoo. O
the rheebok there are two varieties : the rh1ooye-rhee.
and Dickson of Edinburgh-the later a two-grooved, the mo t perfect
and useful rifle I ever had the pleasure of using; oneheavy single-barrel
ed German rifle, carrying twelve to the pound. This last was an o14
companion, which had been presented to me, when a boy, by my dea
and much-lamented friend and brother-isportuI.an, the late James Duff
,f:Innes House. With this rifle, about ten years before, I had brought
do-n myfirst stag on the Paps of Jura, and subsequently bowled ovei
many a princely master-stag and graceful roebuck in his summer-coat
throughout the gi:ns and forests u'fmy native land. The Purdey wai
also a tried friend, both it and the heavy German having been with mt
in several campai, o on the pins and in the jungles of Hisdostan.
had also three stoui double-barreledr;&a I;r rough.work'when harc
riding and quick lu dling is required. Several lead-ladles ofvariou
sizes, a whole host- bullet-molds, loading-rods, shot-belts, powder
flasks, and Aooting-b~s; three cwt. of lead, 50 lbs. of pewter forward
ening the balls to be usrd in destroyilu tile larger game; 10,000 prepare.
ed leaden bullets,bags of shot of all sizes, 100 lbs. of fine sporting gun
powder, 300 bI. oof coarse gtiopowder, about 50,000 best perAussio
caps, 2000 gun-flints, greased patches and clotl to be converted into th
same. I carried also several spare yokes, yoke-skeys, whip-ricksj
rheims, and straps, two sits, ofspare linch-pins, all of which last articles
belong to the-wagon. With the above, and 200 in cash which I carl
ried with me, I considered myself prepared to undertake a journey of;
at least twelve months among Boers or Bechuanas, independent oft
either. -




,. -' -
S- 1

S HEEBO--SOUTH AFRICAN FLORA. 1l

Sok, or red rheebuck; and the.vaal-rheebok, or gray a
hieebuok. The range of the vaal-rheebok, to the northi-
wardi ceases in the latitude of the Long Mountains ly-
ikig to the south of Kuruman ; the other variety is met
with as far north as the mountains in the territory of
ichely, chief of the Baquaines, about fifty miles to the+
north of the Kurrichane range. Both of these ante-
pes frequent high and rocky mountains' The man-
-er of hunting them is alike; and, when properly pur-
aed, I think more nearly resembles Scotch Highland
_- eer-stalking than the pursuit of any other antelope.*
Throughout the grassy mountains which the hunter must traverse
following this antelope, his eye is often gladdened by romantic dells
d sparkling rivulets, whose exhilarating freshness strongly and pleas-
" iigly contrast wi;ti the barren, rocky mountain heights and shoulders'
immediately contiguous. -The green banks and little hollows along the
r margins of these streamlets are adorned with innumerable species of
Brilliant plants and flowering shrubs in wild profusion. Among these,
t) my eye, the most d ing in their beauty were perhaps those love-
Ir heaths Ior which the Cape is so justly renowned. These exquisite
a ladts, singly or in groups, here adorn the wilderness, with a freedom
rnd luxuriance which, could the English gardener or amateur florist
I hold, be might well feel disheartened, so infinitely does Nature.j '
I is favored clima surpass in wild exuberance the nurslings of lhs; arti-
cial care. I remember being particularly struck with two pre-emi-
ently.brilliait varieties, the one bearing a rose-colored, the other a
I ood-red bell; and though I regret to say that I am but a poor bota-
list, even in the heat of the'chace Ipaused, spell-bound, to contein-
,late with 'admiration their fascinating beauty. Others with their
towny stems and waxen flowers of every gaudy hue, green, lilac, i'nd
arious hbades of pink, ied, and crimson; some of them with brown
ips to the bell, flourished in the richer hollows of their native glen, or
loomed with equal loveliness along the arid cliffs and fissures of the
overhanging rocks. Almost equaling the heaths in beauty, and sur-
i them in the additional attraction of their scented-leaves, a whole
Sist of geraniums ill the balmy breeze with their delicious perfume.
Shee at e too well known to admit of any novelty in description; but
may mention, en passant, that they attain a far larger growth in their
slrive soil than I have been in the habit of seeing in our green-hduses.
t all] pu cps of the lofty, fair, conscious-looking iris rear their graceful
Wagong the edges of the streams. Their fairy forms reflected it


'4; .





32 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.




CHAPTER. II.
S'Mysteries of Inspanning-Cape Wagon and its Furniture-Departur-
from Grahamstown-My heaaServant leaves me-Impassable State
of the Roads-My Wagon in a Fix--Change-of Route-Singular In
stinct of the Honey-bird.

ON the 23d of October,. 1843, having completed in
final arrangements, and collected and settled all out
the waters, "they seem to stand like guardian Naiads of the strand.
Another tribe of plants, which particularly delighted me from old a
sociations, though not so striking as many of its neighbors for perfumni
and brilliancy, was composed of several varieties of the light, airy fer -
or bracken, which, whether gracefully overshadowing the mossy stone
S eternally moistened by the bubbling spray 9f the stream, which the
kissed as it danced along, or vailing the gray lichen-clad masses of roc
in the hollows higher up, strongly reminded me of those so conspicuous
ly adorning the wild glens in the mountains ofig native land. Beside,
these, a thousand other gay flowers deck the ms and plains wherever
the eye can fall. Endless varieties of the ixia, the haimanthuis, t
. amaryllis, the marigold, and a number of everlasting flowers, are scat
S tered arouuhd with a lavish hand; also the splendid protea, whosA
s- aweetl never fail to attract swarms of the insect tribes, on which sev
eral bribi kinds of fly-catchers, their plumage glancing in the noonda'
sun, are constantly preying. Further down these water-courses, in th i
S dense, shadyrav i.-h, il3 jungle ia ornamented with loan, tangled fe
toons oli idereit creeper, amoag which the wild jessamine ranks fore
S mot. hanging irn firant ga Il'uds aniid the sha gy lichens, and bunch
ea of bright orange-colored mistletoe, for which the forests.of Africa, i
the vicinity of her sea-coasts, are so remarkable. While touching o
the floral beauties of the hills more immediately adjoining the sea
coast, I may remark that here-ie the-ireat nurseries for heaths and
geraniums. As the traveler advances up the country, these gradually
disappear, and, together with the animal kingdom, the vegetable world
assumes entirely new. features; the colonial forest-trees and bushes
herbs and plants, being succeeded by a vast and endless world ot love
lines; unseen, unknown, untrodden, save by those varied multitudes
of stupendous, .curious, and beautiful quadrupeds, whose forefathers
have roamed its'rniighty solitudes from primeval ages, and with whom
I afterward became- so intimately acquainted.



i







CATTLE IMPOUNDED.
lying debts, the weather, which had been wet _
stormy for many days past, assuming a more settled
appearance, I resolved to inspann" and "'trek," which
the reader will bear in mind mean to yoke and march.
accordingly communicated Tny intentions to my fol..
lowersiand dispatched my leader Carollus to the neigh-
tbr'ing mountains, where my cattle were supposed to
be pasturing, to bring them up. He expended the great-
e .part of the day in searching for them in vain about
their .s.o;ted feeding-ground: at length, late in the aft-
&ifon,'fihe chanced to meet a comrade, who informed
him that the oxen he was seeking were safely lodged in
the "skit-kraal" or pound, Colonel Somerset of "Ours"
having detected them in the act of luxuriating in a field
of gree ,...age. This pleasing intelligence demanded
4hy immediate attendance at the skit-kraal, where, by
i disimbursement of 9s., I obtained their release.
-. Having secured my oxen,-my next business was to
find my servants, who were all missing. Long, as I
expected, was fouiid gallantly assisting the dark-eyed'
,-herope of the mangle, and Kleinboy and Cobus were
Discovered in a state of brutal intoxication, stretched
Son the greensward in front of one of the canteens, al:on,_
wit sgfidry other wagon-drivers and Hottentot Venus.
es, all in the same glorious condition, having expended
on liquor the'bay which they had extracted from me in
advance on the plea of providing themselves with nec-
essaries. Drunk as they were, Carollus, who was so-
ber, managed to allure them to the wagons, and, Long
..aiisting, the inspanning commenced. As no man whc
ae not visited the Cape can form any idea of the man
6r in which this daily operation is performed, it' will
re le necessary to explain it, and to say a few more
7rord onceryling the structure of a wagon
S. B2 .
S* ;,--, ::... ^- .


" ""1'~







ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
P ICape wagon is a large and powerful, yet loosely.
constructed vehicle, running on four wheels. Its ex-
treme length is about eighteen feet, its breadth varying
from three and a half to four feet; the depth of the
sides is about two feet six inches in front, but higher
toward the back of the wagon. All along the sides
two rows of iron staples are riveted, in which are fasI
tened the boughs forming the tent, which arches over
the wagon to a height of five feet, with an awning of
Caffre mat, and a strong canvas sail over all, with
"fore-clap" and "after-clap," which is the colonial
name for two broad canvas curtains, that form part and
parcel of the sail, and hang in the front and rear of the
wagon, reaching to within a few inches of the ground.
In the front is placed a large chest occupying the ex-
treme breadth of the wagon, on which the driver and
two passengers of ordinary dimensions can sit abreast.
This is called the fore-chest, and is secured from sliding
forward by two buffalo rheims, or strips of dressed hide,
placed across the front of it, and secured to the sides.
A similar chest is fastened in like manner to the rear,
of the wagon, which is called the after-chest. Along
the sides of the wagon and outside of it are two longer
and narrower chests called side-chests. These are sup-
ported by two horizontal bars of hard wood riveted tQ
the bottom of the wagon. The side-chests are very
convenient for holding t*ls, and all manner of odds and
ends too numerous to mention. The fore and after
chests are likewise extremely useful for containing
clothing, ammunition, and a thousand small articles ii
daily use. Along the sides of the tent are suspended(
rows of square-cut canvas bags, called side-pockets, ii
which the traveler keeps his hair-brushes and combs
razors, knives, tooth-brushes, soap, towels; or any thinj






THE CAPE WAGON.


else which he may wish to have at hand. I used to
devote one to contain my luncheon, which often con-
sisted of a slice of elephant's trunk.
The traveler sleeps upon a sort of cot, termed a "car.
dell." This cardell is a light, strong, oblong frame,
about eight feet in length, and occupying the breadth
of the wagon. It- is bored all round-witbh-gr ahoaX"
through which strips of hide are interlaced, forming a
sort of net-work on which the mattress rests. This cot V'
is slung across tne wagon, and is attached with thongs
to the bdws of +he tent, its e'-antion being 'egulated
by the cargo, which is carefully stowed aa-j, beneath
it in the body of the wagon. Suspended underneath
the hind part of the vehicle is a strong wooden frame.
work called the trap, on which the pots and gridirons
are lashed during a march. The wagon is steered by
a pole, called the dissel-boorm, to the end of which is
fastened the trek-tow, a stout rope formed of raw buf-
falo-hide. It is pulled by a span, or team, consisting
'f twelve oxen, which draw the wagon by yokes fas-
tened along the trek-tow at regular intervals by means
of strips draw hide. Passing through each end of the
yoke, at d stAnces of eighteen inches from one another,
are two parallel bars of tough wood about eighteen inch-
es in length; these are called yoke-skeys. In inspan-
ning, the ke is placed on the back of the neck of the
ox, with oRf these skeys on either side, and toward
the ends a notches in whiedis fixed the strap, made
of twisted hide; this, passing under the neck of the ani-
mal, secures him in -th yoke. ---
Besides thce straps, each pair of oxen i- -tro:.ii.l
coupled by th which are usc.l in catei
rng and placi er order plrep'ar.Wl~
toinspannin lp of prepared






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


hide with a noose at the end: it is made either of ox or
buffalo hide, and is about eight feet long. A wagon is
also provided with a tar-bucket, two powerful irdn chains
which are called the rheim-chains, and a large iron drag
called the rheim-schoen; also the invariable whp and
jambok; the former consisting of a bamboo pole upward
of twentv feet in length, with a thong of about twenty-
five feet, to the end of which is sewn with "rhoim-pys,"
or strips of dressed steinbok-skin, the "after-slook," and
to this again is fastened the fore-sloek,"' corresponding
with the little whip-cord 2lsh of the English oiachman.
The fore-sivAk,"' about which the wagon-drivers are
very particular, is about a yard in length, and is formed
of a strip of the supple skin of some particular variety
of antelope prepared in a peculiar manner. The skins
of only a few species of antelopes are possessed of suf-
ficient toughness for this purpose. Those most highly.
prized among the colonists are the skins of the harte-
beest, koodoo, blesbok, and bushbuck; when none of
these are to be obtained, they use the skin of a he-
goat, which is very inferior. The colonial wagon-
driver wields this immense whip with great ilexterity
and grace. As he cracks it he produces a rep rt nearly
equal to that of a gun, and by this means he signals to
his leader, who is perhaps herding the oxen at the dis-
tance of a mile, to bring them up when i time to
inspan. -
The "jambok" is another instrument of persuasion .
I ini.l-pensable in the outfit of every Cape wagon. It is
Sad-eof the thick tough hide either uf the white rhinoe-
os or hippopotamus. Its length is frori six to seven
t; its thickness at the In inch and a
a.nd it tapers int. These'
"ndi" nt, and aro







id refractory oxen.
S- rca irom tic skin of the hippopotamus
are very much superior to those of the rhinoceros, being
naturally of a much tougher quality. If properly pre-
pared, one of these will last for many years. A smaller
description of "jambok" is manufactured for the benefit
of horses, and may be seen in the hands of every hor. e-
man in the colony.
When the leader brings up th6 oxen to the wagon to
be inspanned, the wagon-driver, if possible, sends an-
other Hottentot to his assistance, especially if any of
the oxen in the span happen to be young or refractory.
These, armed with a huge "jambok" in one hand, and
a handful of stones in the other, one on either flank,
with shouts, yells, and imprecations, urge forward the
unwilling team toward the, yokes, where the driver is
standing with the twelve long buffalo rheims hanging
on his left arm, pouring fbrth a volley of soothing
terms, such as, "Ah! now, Scotland Wo ha, Blau-
berg! you skellum, kecr dar Carollus for Blaubcrg, ye
stand somar da, ich wichna wha yo hadachta ist."
(Turn there for Blauberg; you, stand there in an ab.
sent state, I do not know where your ideas are.)
"Holland, you would Myfooty ("IMyfooty" is a com-
mon Hottentot term, which I would' defy even them-
selves to construe. The Dutch woid "somar,; 'men-
tioned above, is also a word to whiqh I think I co6tiid
challenge the most learned schoolmaster in the colony
to attach any definite meaning. lit is used both by
Boers and Hottentots in almost every sentence; it is
an answer to every question; and its meanings are
endless.) Slangfelt, you neuxel!". (Snak.field, you
humbug !) "Wo ha, now, Creishi.nann (Cro'ked






ich sell you krae."
a bitrP11 serve you out.) Vitfoot, you duivel:
dai fir.Vitfoot, slain ihm, dat he barst!" (Whitefootd
you devil! flog there Whitefoot, flog him till he bursts.)
"Englandt, you would ghroote-pench Ah now Wo
ha! Ye dat so lowe ist in die shwor plach, und dharum
- 'eies at inspanning! Vacht un bidgte, ich soll a
plach for you aitsuch. Ye lob da for nett so as ye will,
mar ich soll you Wster sing, whar ich kann you mach
like bpikam." (Englaid, you old big paunch! Ah
now! Wo ha! You who are so lazy in the heavy
place, and nevertheless so vicious at inspanning. Wait
a little. I shall seek out a place for you! You tramp
there in front, exactly as you Please; but I will yoke
you further back, where I ean reach you with facility.)
This is said in allusion to England's" having lately
been in the habit of being/yoked in the front of the
team; and if it is very loig, the driver can not reach
the leading oxen with hits whip without descending
from the box, and, therefore, when a fore-ox becomes
lazy, he is yoked further.back in the team, that he may
have the full benefit of ,he persuasive fore-slook."
While the driver's toinguit is pouring forth this flow
of Hottentot eIoqqnoe with amazing volubility, his
hands ar~dfet ares employed with equal activity; the
6tmerr,'ih throwing the oagn noose of the rheim, lasso-
ke;'over the hs of each ox, and drawing it tight
round them as he catches him; the latter in kicking
the eyes and nose of those oxen which the jamboks
and shouts of the leaders behind have driven too far in
upon him. At thi4 moment Blauberg," who is an old
offender, and who acquired in early youth the practice
which h has newer relinquished of bolting from tb,


I -mrm








spanning, being this day un-
r had any severe work for some
y springs round, notwithstanding Kiein.
ell aware of his propensities, has got his particu-
ir rheim firmly twisted round his hand; and having
once got his tail where his head ought to have been,
and thus deprived Kleinboy of all purchase over him,
ne bounds madly forward, heedless of a large sharp
stone with which one of the leaders salutes him in the
eye. By his forward career, Carcllus is instantly dashed
to the ground; and Kleinboy, who has pertinaciously
grasped the rheim in the vainr hope of retrieving the
matter, is dragged several yards along the ground, and
eventually relinquishes the rhlm, at the same time
losing a good deal of the outer bark of his unfortunate
hand. Away goes Blauberg in his headlong course,
tearing frantically over hila ale, his rheim flying
from his horns like a stream wind. His course
lies right across theiddle fthie Ce-corps barracks,
where about forty or kft' -rb.i w o are lounging
about, parade-eing overrush to inte ,pt his course,
preoeded by a pack of mongel cury shape and
size, but in vain. Blaubergleed wer of
sticks and stones hurled zt his d nead, charS
through the midst of them, nor is covered for the
space of about two hours.
The rest of the team, seeing the driver sprawling on
the ground, as a matter of course follow Blauberg's ex-
ample: instantly wheeling to the rigl t and left about,
away they scamper, each selecting a course for himself,
some with and others without the appendage of the
streamers. The Hottentots, well aware that it will
be useless to follow Blauberg in the'usual way, as he
would probably lead them a chase of four or five miles,






ADVENTURES I


now adopt the most approved
in such cases. They accordiiyu
troop of tamer oxen, with which they proc
of the truant. This troop they cunningly induce
Blauberg to join, and eventually return with him Jo
the wagon, the driver, with pouting lips and the sweat
running down his brow, pouring forth a torrent of threat-
ened vengeance against the offending Blauberg. The
inspanning is then once more commenced as before;
and Blauberg, being this time cautiously placed in a
central position, well wedged up by the other oxen,
whereby he is prevented from turning about, is lassoed
with the strongest rheim, and firmly secured to the
steady old ox who has Iprposely been driven up beside
him. The twelve oxen are sooTn all securely yoked in
their proper places; tfe leader has made up his fore-
Stow," which is a longt rheim attached round the
horns of each of the ff ont oxen, by which he leads
the team, and insunning report te .be accomplished.
I omitted to 6fp iha~th9/two fore-oxen; and the
two after-oxen hieh are Y ed one 6n- either sid?, of
the "dissel- 'r pole are always supposed to be
the stnt in gent, and tractable in the
.The t -oxen in particular, to be right
/good ones, req combination of excellences, as it
is indispensable f r the safety of the wagon that they
thoroughly understand their duty. They are expect-
ed, unguided by feins, to hold the rarely-trodden roads
which occur throughout the remoter parts of the colony
either by day or night; and so well trained are these
sagacious animals, that it is not uncommon to meet
with a pair of fore-oxen which will, of their own accord,
hold the spoor" ir track of a single wagon which ham
perhaps crossed a plain six months previously.






THE JOURNEY BEGUN. 41

In dangerous ground, however-where- the narrow
road winds through stones and rocks, or along the brink
of a precipice; or where the road is much intersected
by water-courses, and bordered by the eternal hillocks
raised by the white ants, which are of the consistence
of a brick, being formed, during damp weather, of clay,
which the sun afterward hardens; or where the "aard-
varcke," or ant-bear, with his powerful claws, has
undermined the road with enormous holes-the fore-
I oxen, however trustworthy, should never be left to their
own devices, but the leader should precede them, lead-
ing by the tow. This safe and highly necessary pre-
caution is, however, rarely practiced by the ruffianly
Hottentots if the baas" or master is not present, these
-worthies preferring to sj still and smoke their pipes or
play their violins'during the march to performing their
duty, thus frequently exposing their master's property
to imminent peril. It is thus that more than half the
capsizes, broken axle-trees, broken dissel-booms, and
'smashed cap-tents, daily occur throughout the colony.
All being now in readiness, and some pots and spades,
which the Hottentots, as a matter of course, had omit-
ted to stow away in their proper places, being securely
lashed on the trap and to the sides of the wagon, the
illustrious Kleinboy brandishes his 'huge whip, and,
cracking \with a report which loudly reverberates
through, jthe walls and houses of the Cape-corps bar-
racks, js out, with stentorian lungs, "Trek, trek,
you duie9. Rhure y'lla dar vor, you skellums! Ane
spoor trap, you neuxels! Tabelberg, you would kring !
Trek, you 16we paar. marys. Sohfreeberg, you lIwe
Satan! Blauberg, you duivel's kind!" (Draw, draw,
youdevils! Move yourselves forward there, you skel.
lums! Trampatildn the same track, you humbugs'
W ,- i,






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


Table Mountain, you old ring! Draw, you lazy troop
of mares! Snow Mountain, you lazy Satan! Blue
Mountain, you child of the devil!) At the same mo.
ment he catches the refractory Blauberg the most ter-
rific wipe round the ribs with his fore-slock, accom-
panied by a sharp report like the discharge of a pistol,
-upon which a cloud of blue hair is seen to fly from the
ox, and a long red streak, down which the blood copi-
ously flows, denotes the power of the weapon the driv-
er so mercilessly wields over the backs of his horny
team. At last the huge and heavily-laden wagon is
in motion, and rolls lightly along after the powerful
oxen, which on level ground seem scarcely to feel the
yokes which lie across their necks.
:-Requiring to pick up several large parcels at the.
stores of some of the merchants in the town, we trek-
ked down the main street of Grahamstown, and in
passing the shops of the butchers and bakers, laid in
a large supply of bread and fresh meat for immediate
use. Before we had proceeded far, some sharp-sighted
Hottentots came running after us, calling out that a
fountain of tiger's milk had started in the stern of the
wagon; and on halting, we discovered that several loose
cases of gin which I had purchased for immediate use,
and which had not been properly stowed, had sprung
aleak. The Hottentots seemed to regret amazingly
the loss of so much good liquor, and endeavored with
their hands to catch it as it fell. Owing to the various
delays which had occurred during the day, I did not get
more than half a mile clear of Grahamstown when tlhe
sun went down; and there being then no moon, I deem-
edit expedient to halt for the night. We accordingly,
outspanned; and the Hottentots, h ying secured the
oxen to the yokes, and picketed riyo horses on the





FIRST DAY'S MARCH.


wheels, requested my permission to return to the town
to take another farewell of their wives and sweet-hearts.
This I did not deem altogether prudent; but knowing
well that if I withheld my consent they would go with-
nut it, I considered it best to comply with a good grace;.
%nd granting a general leave of absence, took on my-
self the charge of the castle which was destined, to be
my home during the next five years.
The Hottentots, strange to say, according to their
promise, returned to the wagon during the night, and
next morning, at earliest dawn of day, I roused them,
and we inspanned. When this was accomplished, my
head servant Long not appearing, we marched with-
out him; but we had only proceeded about three miles
when he managed to overtake us, the road being hilly
and very soft, owing to the recent rains. On coming
ap and recovering his breath, he expressed himself
very much disgusted at my starting without him, when
[ took the liberty of explaining that I expected my
servants to wait for me, and not that I should tarry for
them. Our progress was considerably impeded by the
'bad state of the roads, and at ten A.M. we halted for
breakfast beside a pool of rain-water, having perform-
ed a march of about nine miles. Here, having out-
spanned 0og9 oxen, we set about preparing our gipsy
breakfastlj e collected sticks for the fires, another
filled tk ttles at the adjoining "vley," while Long
and I ^ / busied in spreading the table and dusting
the bee eaks with salt and pepper.
Having permitted the oxen to graze for a. few hours,
we again inspanned, holding the high road for Somer-
set; and about sundown we halted for the night on the
farm r^ a Mr. Fichett, a great sheep-farmer, who re-
ceeiw' me hospitably, and invited me to dine with him.
\^, I
*^''





44 ADVENTURES JN SOUTH AFRICA
Here I met Captain Codrington, who had lately sold
out of the 7th Dragoons. Our march this day lay
through a succession of low, undulating hills, richl
clothed with a variety of grasses, herbs, and flowers, with
here and there large patches of dwarfish evergreens.. I
had directed my Hottentots to kraal the oxen that night,
with the intention of making an early start on the fol-
lowing morning, but the herd managed to lose them in
the thick underwood. They were, however, recovered
at an early hour on the following morning, and, having
breakfasted, I was about to proceed, when Long, with
a face worthy of his name, came up to me with a whole
tissue of dire complaints about his personal inconven-
iences, the most galling of wnich appeared to be his
having to sleep on the ground in the tent. On my
friend's advancing these objections, I saw very plainly
that he was not the man for my work, as the life before
us was by no means likely to be one of luxury; so,
having made over to him his impedimenta, and paid
him his month's wages, I wished him a safe return to
Grahamstown.
It was a lovely day, with a bright blue sky ove%
head, covered with light, fleecy clouds, and the trees
and shrubs, freshened by the recent rains, emitted an.
aromatic perfume. Having proceeded some miles, we
commenced ascending the Zuurberg range, where we
were met by two wagons from Somerset, laden with
oranges for the Grahamstown market, of which I pur-
chased several dozen, and found them excellent. The
drivers of these wagons informed me that the road iq
advance was almost impassable, owing to the recent
heavy rains. Although their oxen were better than
mine, and their wagons lighter by some thousand
pounds, they had had great difficulty in coming ofi, and






STUCK IN THE MUD


they recommended me to retrace my steps, and, cross-
ng the country, try the other road by De Bruin's Poort.
Notwithstanding their remonstrances, I resolved to push
n and give ,t a trial.
About mid-day I outspanned for tivo hours, to let the
battle graze; after which, having proceeded a few miles,
we found the road so cut up that we were obliged to
abandon it, and trek along the rugged hil-side, holding
a course parallel to it. Marching in front, and sinking
up to-my ankles in mud at every step, I endeavored to
select the hardest ground, on whici the wagon might
follow. The ground now every moment became worse
and worse; the panting oxen, straining every nerve to
keep the wagon in motion, and halting every hundred
yards to take breath. At length the wheels suddenly
sank deep into the soil, and became irimovably fixed,
upon which we made loose our shovels and pickax, and
worked hard for half an hour, clearing away the soil in
front of and around the wheels; which being accom-
plished, we rigged out a fore-tow and extra yoke to in-
span my two spare oxen, and then set our whole four-
teen to draw, but they could not move the wagon an
inch. We then lightened it of a part of the cargo, and
after half an hour's further labor we had relieved it of
upward of three thousand pounds; but still the oxen,
notwithstanding the most unmerciful application of both
whip and jambok, failed to move it. The thought then
struck me of pulling it out backward; we accordingly
past loose the trek-tow, and, having hooked on the long
span or team to the after part of the wagon, we suc-
'ceeded in extracting it from its deep bed.. We next
proceeded with much care and trouble to stow away
the baggage which we had removed, and the oxen being
igaii placed in their position, we resumed our journey;
.* 'r






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


but, before we had gone three hundred yards, the wagon
again became ingulfed, sinking into the earth to such
a depth that I half expected it would disappear alto-
gether. The nav4 of the wheel was actually six or
eight inches below the surface. This put us at our
wits' ends, and I began to think that, if this was to be,
our rate of traveling, my hair would be gray ere I
reached the land of elephants.
A few minutes after this had occurred, another wagon
meeting us from Somerset hove in sight, but- shortly
stuck fast within a quarter of a mile of us. Its owner,
an Englishman, an Albany transport-rider or carrier,
of the name of Leonard, now came up and requested
me to lend him my oxen to assist him in his difficul-
ties, which I did, he promising, in return, to help me
out of mine; but it was not until unloaded of the en-
tire cargo that they succeeded in extricating it; after
which, with considerable trouble, they came up to us
We now hooked on to my wagon bbth spans, amount-
ing to twenty-six strong oxen, the drivers standing one
on either side, with their whips ready at the given sig-
nal to descend upon the devoted oxen. I myself, with
one of the Hottentots, armed with the jamboks, stood
by the after-oxen, upon whom, in a dilemma of this
sort, much depends. Every man and beast be'lg at
their post, the usual cry of Trek, trek !" resounded
on all sides, accompanied by a torrent of unearthly
yells and abusive epithets; atthe same time the whips
were plied with energetic dexterity, and came down
with startling reports on the backs of the oxen through.-
out all parts of the teani. The twenty-six oxen, thus
urged, at the same moment concentrated their ener-
gies, laying a mighty strain' on the gear. So ghing
must yield, and accordingly my powerful bu lrek-


F a--.';
) ,r .r.cs





A BAD FIX.


Low snapped asunder within a few feet of the dissel-
oom. The trek-tow being strongly knotted together,
Second attempt was made, when it again snapped in
1 fresh place. We then unhooked the long drag-chains
rom beneath the wagon, wherewith having fortified the
rek-tow, we made a third trial. The cunning oxen,
having now twice exerted themselves in vain, and being
well aware that the wagon was fast, according to their
usual-custom, could not be induced to make any further
effort, notwithstanding the wagon-drivers had inflicted
ppon them about half an hour's terrific flogging, till the
sides of half of them were running down with gore. In
cases of this sort, the oxen, instead of taking properly
to their work, spring about in the yoke, and turn their
tails round where their heads should be, invariably
snapping the straps and yoke-skeys, and frequently
splitting the yokes. In the present instance my gear
did not escape ; for, after battling with the oxen till the
sun w~nt down, and smashing the half of my rheims,
Traps, and skeys, and splitting one of my yokes, we
ire obliged to drop it for the night. We cast loose
oxen, and, driving them up the hill-side, granted
6 their their liberty until morning; and leaving our bro.
oen.gear, pickaxes, spades, and other utensils scattered
bhat the ground in grand confusion, tired and worn
mt.wa kindled a fire, and set about cooking our dinner.
enard and his servants declared that they had not
ided any thing but a little biscuit and coffee during
the last three days, the Dutchmen along their road
* king very unfriendly and inhospitable to the English
*ansport-riders.
?, Next morning we awoke refreshed by sound slum-
bers; and having dispatched all the Hottentots, exce
ing oni man, in quest cf the oxen, Leonard an



I _^^






40 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
actively employed for two'hours in digging out and off
loading the wagon, after which Leonard and the :Hot
tentot set about preparing the breakfast, while I pro
ceeded to darn jmy worsted stockings, having had th
good fortune to obtain some hanks of worsted from th(
wife of a Scotch sergeant in Grahamstown, after vain
.y seeking that article in the shops of all the haber
dashers in the town. While we were thus employed
Captain Codrington and Mr. Fichett rode up to us, an<
seemed very much amused at our situation. Havin
drunk a cup of coffee with me, Fichett and Codiington.
returned home, previously engaging me to dine witlI
them, as I had resolved to retrace my steps and try ant
-other line of country. About 11 A.M. the Hottentots
returned with our oxen, when, with the united effort
of the teams, we succeeded in extricating my nov
lightened wagon. The two oxen I purchased from
Thomppon, though wetl-favorod, proving indolent in a
heavy pull, I exchanged them wfth Leonard- for the
liberty.to pick any fwo out of his span, giving himy
sovereign to boot. His team consisted of twelve tougl
little red Zoolah oxen, from the district of Natal, Iwhich
like the Alblny cattle, are termed "Zuur-feldt." This
colonial phrase is applied to all oxen bred and reared
near the sea-coast, in districts where the majority of
the grass is sour. Those from about the frontiiers of
the colony, or any where beyond.& the Orange River
are termed "Sweiet-feldt" oxen. `The Zuur-feldt dat
tle possess a superiority over the Sweet-feldt as trek-
oxen, inasmuch as they thrive an any pas:nre, where
:the latter die if detained more than a few days in Zuur'
feldt districts. Leonard's account of the road berob
weas so bad, his wagon having been upset four time
mi us preceding day, that I resolved to put about, and


g ..






THE HONEY-BIRD. 49
adopt the route through De Bruin's Poort, which had
been recommended to me by the drivers of the Somer-
set orange-wagons. By this route I should avoid Sorn-
erset, and pass through the village of Cradock. My
plans at this time were, in the first instance, to proceed
direct to the Thebus Flats, where black wildebeest and
springbok were reported to abound; and thence to
march upon Colesberg, a village on the frontiers, where
I expected to meet my cousin, Colonel Campbell, of the
91st, by whose advice, in a great measure, I intended
to be guided in my future movements.
We now reloaded my wagon, made all fast, and hav-
ing put every thing in order, Leonard and I journeyed
together to Fichett's farm, where I once more took up
my quarters for the night. While actively busied with
my oxen, I saw to-day, for the first time, the honey-
bird. This extraordinary little bird, which is about the
size of a chaffinch, and of a light gray color, will inva-
riably lead a person following it to a wild-bees' nest.
Chattering and twittering in a-state of great excite-
ment, it perches on a branch beside the traveler, en-
deavoring by various wiles to attract his attention; and
having succeeded in doing so, it flies lightly forward in
a wavy course in the direction of the bees' nest, alight-
ing every now and then, and looking back to ascertain
if the traveler is following it, all the time keeping up
an incessant twitter. When at length it arrives at the
hollow tree or deserted white-ants' hill which contains
the honey, it for a moment hovers over the nest, point-
ing to it with its bill, and then takes up its position on
Neighboring branch, anxiously awaiting its share of
)he spoil. When the honey is taken, which is accom-
plished by first stupefying the bees by burning grass at
the entrance of their domicile, the honey-bird will often
VOL. I.-O






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH A RICA


lead to a second and even to a third nest. The per-i
son thus following it ought to whistle. The savages
in the interior, while in pursuit, have several charmed
sentences-which they use on the occasion. The wild1
bee of Southern Africa exactly corresponds with thel
domestic garden bee of En'gland. They are very gen-
erally diffused throughout every part of Africa, bees-
wax forming a considerable part of the cargoes of-ships'
trading to the Gold and Ivory Coasts, and the deadly)
districtt of Sierra Leone, on the western shores of Africa.
Interesting as the honey-bird is, and though sweet
be the stores to which it leads, I have often had cause
to wish it -far enough, as, when fobowing the warm
"spoor" or trac] of elephants, I have often seen the sav-
ages, at moments of the utmost importance, resign the
spoor of the beasts to attend to the summons of the
bird. Sometimes, however, they are sold," it being a
well-known fact, both among the Hottentots and tribes
of the interior, that they often lead the unwary pursuer
to danger, sometimes guiding him to the mid-day re-
treat of a grizzly lion, or bringing him suddenly upon
the den of the crotching panther. I remember on one
occasion, abgut three years later, when weary with war-
ring against the mighty elephants and hippopotamoi
which roam the vast forests and sport in the floods of
the fair Limpopo, having mounted a pair of unwonted
shot-barrels, I sought recreation in the humbler pur-
suit of quail-shooting. While thus employed, my at-
tention was suddenly invited by a garrulous honey-
bird, which pertinaciously adhered to me for a consic
erable time, heedless of the reports made by myggun
Having bagged as many quails and partridges as I
cared about shooting, I whistled lustily to the honey-
bird, and gave him chase: after following htm to a dis-





JOURNEY RESUMED. 51

tanoe of upward of a mile, through the open glaies ad-
joining the Limpopo, he led me to an unusually vast
crocodile, who was lying with his entire body conceal-
ed, nothing but -his horrid head being visible above the
surface of the water, his eyes anxiously watching the
movements of eight or ten large bull buffaloes, which,
in seeking to quench their thirst in the waters of the
river, were crackling through, the dry reeds as they
cautiously waded in the deep mud that a recent flood
had deposited along the edge. Fortunately for the buf-
faloes, the depth of the mud prevented their reaching
the stream, and thus the scaly monster of the river was
disappointed of his prey.
S


CHAPTER m.


Fearful Descent of De Bruin's Poort-District lately deserted by Ele
phants-Noble Forest-trees--the Great Fish River--Cuuning Boers
--Burning Effects of the Sun-The Dutch No6's Green Tea Oint-
ment-Skill of the Hottentots in "Tapping the Admiral"--Beauti- I
fully wooded Country-The Village of Cradock-South African Cli-
mate-Countless Herds of Springbok-Mynheer Pocheter-The
Way to make a Friend on the Thebus Flats-Hendric Strydom-
Hunting for Springbok-Extraordinary Migrations ofthese Antelopes.

MY "trek-tow" having been destroyed during the
recent struggles, I was glad to purchase a new one
from a man named Mackenzie in Fichett's employ,
&which he supplied me, together with a strong 'thorn-
"wood yoke, for 1. On leaving the farm we proceed-
Sed in an easterly course, and struck into a track which
in a few hours led us into the high road leading from
Grahamsttwn to Cradock. Having followed this road






52 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
for several miles, we commenced descending through
the De Bruin's Poort, where the road winds, in a deep,
narrow, and rugged ravine, through dense ever-green
underwood, in its descent to the lower ground adjacent
to the banks of the Great Fish River. This poort, or
mountain pass, the terror of wagon-drivers, being at
all times perilous to wagons, was in the present in-
stance unusually dangerous and impassable, the recent
heavyTains having entirely washed away the loose soil
with which the colonists had been in the habit of em-
banking the permanent shelves and ridges of adamant-
ine rock over which the wagons must necessarily pass,
while they had, at the same time, undermied an im-
mense number of largemasses of rooks and stones which
had hitherto occupied positions on the banks above, and
which now lay scattered along the rocky way, present-
ing an apparently insurmountable barrier to our further
progress.
As we were the first who had traveled this road since
the late inundations, it had not undergone the slightest
repair, which, to have done 'properly, would have re-
Squired the labor of a week. Having halted the wag-
on, and descended into the ravine for an inspection, ac-
companied by Kleinboy, I at once pronounced it, in its
present state, to be impassable. Kleinboy, however,
well aware that he would not be called upon to pay for
damages, seemed to entertain a different opinion, evi-
dently preferring to run all risks to encountering the
Herculean labors of rolling all these bowlders to one
side. Accordingly, having made up our minds to take,
the pass, we reascended to the wagon, and having
rheimed or secured the two hind wheels by means of
the drag-chains, Kleinboy took his position on .the box,
and the wagon commenced its perilous desce, I follow-


, ... l





A PERILOUS DESCENT. 53
ing in the firm expectation every moment of beholding
its destruction. Jolting furiously along, it crashed and
jumped from rock to rock; at one moment the .staf.
board hind wheel resting on a projecting ledge of rock
several feet in height, and the front wheel on the same
side buried in a deep hollow, and next moment the
larboard wheels suddenly elevated by a corresponding
mass of rook on the opposite side, placing the wagon in
such a position that it seemed as though another inch
must inevitably decide its fate. I held mfy breath,
doubting the possibility of its regaining the horizontal
position, Righting again, however, with fearful vio
lence, it was launched, tottering from side to side, down
the steep stony descent, and eventually, much to my
astonishment, the pass was won, and we entered upon
the more practicable road beneath.
I could not help fancyng how an I nglish-built ve-
hicle would have fared in a similar situation, and how
a Brighton coachman would have opened his eyes could
he have seen my Cape wagon in the act of descending
this fine specimen of a colonial wagon-road, which I
might aptly compare to the rugged mountain-bed of
some Highland river. Having continued our journey
till within an hour of sundown, we encamped for the
night. The,country through which we had passed was
densely covered with one vast jungle of dwarfish ever-
green shrubs and bushes, among which the speck-boom
was predominant. This species of tree, which is one
of the most abundant throughout the forests and jun-
r gles of Albany and Caffraria, is utterly unserviceable
to man, as its pithy branches, even when dead,'are un-
available for fuel. It is, however, interesting, as con-
stitutin'g effavorite food of the elephants which, about
twenty-five years ago, frequented the whole of this







54 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
country in large herds. The foot-paths formed through
successive ages by the feet of these mighty animals are
s@ll discernible on the sides and in the necks of some
of the forest-lad hills, and the skulls and larger bones
of many:are at this moment bleaching in some of the
forest-kloofs or ravines adjacent to the se'a in Lower
Albany.
From time immemorial, these interesting and stupen-
dous quadrupeds had maintained their ground through-
out these their paternal domains, although they were
constantly hunted, and numbers of them were slain, by
the neighboring active and athletic warriors of the Am-
aponda tribes, on account of their flesh, the ivory so
much prized among civilized nations being by them es-
teemed of no value, the. only purpose to which they
adapt it being the manufacture of rings and ornaments
for their fingers and arms.. These gallant fellows, arm-
ed only with their assagais or light javelins of their own
manufacture, were in the constant habit of attacking
the gigantic animals, and overpowering them with the
accumulated showers of their weapons. At length,
however,/when the white lords of the creation pitched
their camps on the shores oJ Southern Africa, 'a more
determined anJ general warfare was waged against the
elephants on account of their ivory, with the more de-
structive engines of ball and powder. In a few years,
those who managed to escape from the hands of their
oppressors, after.wandering from forest to forest, and
from one mountain range to another, and finding that
sanctuary there was none, turned their fices' to the
northeast, and trekked" or migrated from their an-
cestral jungles to lands unknown. A small remnant,
however, remained; and these, along with a few buffa-
loes, koodoos, and one solitary black rhinoceros, still





FOREST-TREES. 55

found shelter is the vastjungles of the Zuurberg and
Addo bush as late as the commencement of 1849.
When the colonists first settled in Albany, they were..
in the habit of carrying on a very lucrative traffic with -
the chiefs of the neighboring Amaponda tribes, from
whom they obtained large quantities of ivory in barter
for beads, brass wire, and other articles of little value.
Throughout the jungles of Albany and Caffraria, but
more particularly in the deep kloofs and valleys, many
varieties of noble forest-trees are found of considerable
size and great beauty, several of which are much prized
by the colonists on account of their excellence for wag-
on-work and house-building; of these I may enumerate
the yellow-wood tree, the wild cedar, the stink-wood
tree, and the black and the white iron-wood tree. The
two latter are remarkable for toughness and durability,
and are much used in the axle-trees of wagons. The
primitive system of wooden axle-trees has of late years
been superseded in some districts by patent iron ones;
many, however, still use and prefer the old wooden
-axle-trees, because wagons having those- made of iron,
n steep descents, run too freely after the team, to the
injury of the two after-oxep; and, further, because a
wooden axle, if broken, may be replaced in any remote
part of the country; whereas a damaged iron axle-tree
can not be mended even by the skillful smiths through
out the towns and villages of the colony. The iron
axles are !specially apt to be broken in cold frosty
mornings during the winter, when a wagon, immediate-
ly after being set in motion, has to pass through rough
ground before the friction of the wheel has imparted to
it a certain degree of heat.
On the following day a march of four hours brougl~
us to the bank of th3 Great Fish liver, having crossed

3. *







56 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.

an extensive open glade covered with several varieties
of low shrubs and grasses and rough heather. Here,
for the first time, I saw and shot the black koran, an
excellent game-bird, allied to the bustards, so abundant
throughout South Africa. Its weight corresponds with
that of our old cock grouse; its legs and neck are long
like those of the ostrich;. its breast and back are gray,
and its wings black and white. They are every where
to be met with where the country is at all level and
open: when disturbed, they take wing and fly over the
plain in circles, much after the manner of the green,
plover or peewit, uttering a harsh grating cry. The
best method of getting within range is to use a horse,
and ride round them in a circle, gradually contracting
it. To this open glade, whose name I have forgotten,
the Nimrods about Grahamstown often resort, and in-i
dulge in the exciting sport of wild boar and porcupine
hunting. This chasse" is conducted on.bright moon-
light nights, with a gathering of rough strong dogs, the
hunters being armed with a bayonet or spear, with
which they dispatch the quarry when brought to bay.
I found the Great Fish River, as I had anticipated,
still flooded and impassable to wagons. It was, how-
everpebbing rapidly, and apparently would be fordable,
on the morrow. During the previous heavy rains,
which were said not to have been equaled for twenty-
seven years, it had risen to an immense height, and
every where overflowed its banks. That giprt of the
bank which formed the descent and ascent of the for-
mer wagon-road was, as a matter of course, entirely
swept away, a steep wall on either side of the river re-
maining in its stead, flanked by a bank of deep and
slimy mud. An immense deal of manual labor would
consequently be necessary to form a road, by cutting

.I





FISH RIVER DRIFT. 57

down these walls, and clearing a channel through the .
mud, before a wagon could take the drift. Accordingly,
the work being considerable, I thought the sooner we
set about it the better; so, having cooked and partaken
of a hot tiffin, we cast loose the pickaxes, spades, and
shovels, stripped to our shirts, and, half wading, half
swimming, succeeded in crossing the river, where, hav-
ing labored hardtill sundown, and constructed a famous
piece of road, we considered our task on that side as
completed. Early on the following morning we re-
sumed our laborson our side of the river, and.about 10
A.M. our path was finished. A party of Boers now
hove in sight with three wagons, which they outspan. ,
ned on the opposite barik, and drove their oxen into the
neighboring hills to graze. Presently observing us pre-
paring to inspan, they-beckoned to me to hold a confer-
ence with them across the stream, the object of which
was to endeavor to dissuade me from taking the drift
until their oxen should return, under pretense of assist-
ing us, but, in reality, fearing that we would stick fast,
and that they should be forced to assist us, since, in
the event of our wagon sticking before their oxen came
up, they would be unable 4o pass us until we were ex-
tricated. I saw the move with half an eye, and in-
stantly ordered my men to inspan with all possible dis-
patch; when we got safely through the river and up
the opposite bank, which was much more than I had
anticipated.
It was a fearful pull for the poor oxen; the wagon
stuck fast three times, and was within a hair's breadth
of being upset. The water just came up to the bottom
boards, but, fortunately, did not wet any part of the
cargo. The Boers seemed much surprised at the suc-
cess of our venture, as they always entertain the idea
.*.. C,2
'"" ^ .'


r







'EN----ES IN SOUTH AFRICA.'


that an Englishman's oxen must be inferior to theirs,
but this idea. is grossly erroneous, the reverse being in-
variably tle case. A Boer will hardly ever flog his
oxen when they require it, which, though it may shock
the ear of my fair reader, my regard to truth compels
me to state is indispensable, oxen being of a strange,
stubborn disposition, perfectly different from horses.
This, at a future period, I had cause toascertain prac-
tically, when forsaken by my followers on the borders
of the Kalihari desert, I was necessitated daily to in-
span and drive my own oxen, which I did, with the as-
sistance of a small Bushman, for a distance of about a
thousand miles.
It is a common thing to see a-Boer's oxen stick fast
on a very moderate ascent, with not above 1000 lbs.
or 2000 lbs. weight in the wagon, where an Albany
transport-rider would pass him with a load of 6000 lbs
behind his bullocks; and it is by no means uncommon
to see these Albany men discharging a load of even
8000 lbs. weight at the stores of the Grahamstown
merchants, which they have transported with a team
of fourteen oxen through the hilly country between that
town and Algoa Bay. After crossing the river, the
road continued good for about three miles, but after
that we found it washed away ifi many places. Once
we stuck fast, and were obliged to dig the wagon out,
and broke our trek-tow three times in extracting it.
In other places we were obliged to leave the us]al road,
and cut a new way through the thorny trees with our
axes, the road being cut up with wa~er-courses six and
eight feet deep. At mid-day we outspanned for two
hours, to rest the oxen, on the farm of a Mr. Corrie,
Here we met a"' smouse," or trader, coming down the
country with a d -ove of about a hundred and fifty very
a021


i


ADV





FIRST SIGHT OF SPRINGBQKS. 659
large, well-conditioned oxen. He offered me a span at
3 ahead; they were worth 12 each in England. I
felt the sun rather oppressive.
About two P.M. we inspanned, and, having ascend-
ed a long and very steep hill, we entered upon a new
line of country, of wide, undulating, open plains of rank,
waving grass, dotted over with the mid-built habita-
tions of white antp. We held on for three hours after
sundown, and halted for the night at an uninhabited
dilapidated mansion, in which we lighted a fire and
cooked our dinner. Having secured our oxen on the
yokes, instead of permitting them to graze during the
night, we -were enabled to march next morning some
time before the break of day; and as the rising sun
gradually unveiled -the landscape, I had the pleasure
of beholding fOr the first time several small herds of
%springboks scattered over the plain. This exquisitely
graceful and truly interesting antelope is very general
ly diffused throughout Southern Africa, and is more nu-
merous there than any other variety; it is very nearly
allied to the ariel gazelle of Northern Africa, and in its
nature and habits reminded me of the saisin of India;
A few herds of springboks are still to be met with on
the plains in the district of Somerset, on which I had
now entered; but as this is one of the nearest districts
to the abodes of men where this species remains, it is
of course much hunted, and is annually becoming scar-
cer. The.gentlemen farmers of the surrounding dis-
tricts keep a good breed of greyhounds, with which they
have excellent sport in pursuing these antelopes. On be-
holding the springboks I instantly directed my two horses
to be saddled, and, desiring the Hottentots to proceed
to a farm in advance and there outspan, I rode forth
with Cobus, taking my two-grooved rifle to endeavor

r 4 1t
T-^ -






60 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
to obtain a shot. I found them extremely wild, and,
after expending a considerable deal of ammunition, firing
at distances of from six to eight hundred yards, I re-
joined my wagons, which I found drawn up on a Dutch-
man's' farm, and left the antelopes scathless.
Owing to exposure to the sun while working at the
Fish River drift on the preceding. days, and also to hav-
ing discarded coat, waistcoat, and neckcloth since leav-
ing Grahamstown, my arms, neck, and shoulders were
much swollen, and severely burned and blistered, caus-
ing me much pain, and at night preventing me from
sleeping. The kind-hearted nod, or lady of the farm,
commiserating my condition, and wishing to alleviate
my pain, informed me that she had an excellent re-
ceipt for sunburn, which she had often successfully
administered to her husband and sons. One of the
chief ingredients of the promised balsam was green tea,
which was to be reduced to powder, of which she direct-
ed me to send her a little by one of my servants. I do
not know what the other components might have been,
but Iwell know that, on applying the ointment to the.
raw and swollen parts, it stung me as though it had
S been a mixture of salt and vinegar, giving me intense
pain, and causing me to hop and dance about like one
demented, and wish the Boer boe and her ointment in
the realms of Pluto, to the infinite delight and merri-
ment of my sympathizing Hottentots.
A peculiar expression in the eyes of these gentlemen,
and their general demeanor, inclined me to think that
their potations had consisted of some more generous
beverage than water during the morning's march; and
on examining one of my liquor cases, I found that I
was minus a bottle and a half of gin since yesterday
Thio is a common failing among this monkey-faced race, nineteen

do.r





TAPPING THE ADMIRAL. 61:

After breakfast we continued our march, when I was
again tempted to saddle up and give chase to a troop
of springboks, one of which I shot: we continued our
march until sundown, when we halted beside a pool of
rain water. Here we found some young Boers and
Hottentots, belonging to a neighboring farm, actively
employed in digging out a nest of wild bees; several
of them had their eyes nearly closed from the stings
which they had received. The spoils of the bike,"
however, repaid their pains by twenty'pounds of honey.
On approaching the nest, a large cluster of bees chose
my sunburned arm as place of rendezvous, from which
I could not remove them until I hadcobtained a bunch
of burning grass.
in every twenty Hottentots being drunkards, and they have, moreover,
not the slightest scruple of conscience as to who is the lawful proprie-
tor of the liquor, so long as they can get access to it. No locks nor
bolts avail; and thus on the Bay-road, the high road between Algoa
Bay and Grahamstown, a constant system of tapping the admiral is
maintained. In this pursuit, these worthies, from long practice, have
i arrived at considerable skill, and it is usually accomplished in the fol-
lowing manner: If the liquor is in a cask, having removed one of the
hoops, a gimlet is inserted, when a bucket or two of spirit having been
drawn off, the aperture is filled with a plug, and, the hoop being re:
placed, no outward mark is visible. The liquor thus stolen, if missed
and inquiries issued, is very plausibly set down to*the score of leakage
A great deal of gin arrives in Grahamstown in square case-bottles, pack-
ed in slight red wooden cases. To these the Hottentots devtte marked
attention, owing to the greater facility of getting at them. Having
carefully removed the lid and drained several of the bottles, either by
drinking them or pouring their contents into the water-casks belong-
ing to the wagons, they either replace the liquor with water and re-
pack the case again as they found it, or else they break the bottles
which they have drained and replace them in the case, at the same
time taking out a quantity of the chaff in which they have been pack-
ed. This is done to delude the merchant into the idea that the loss of
liquor occurred owing to breakage from original bad packing. The
rik.and damage entailed on the proprietors of wagons and owners of
merchandise from the drivers indulging in such a system, on the pro
various roads of the colony, may be imagined.





62 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.

Our march on the following day lay through a mount.
ainous country abounding with rich pasture, covered
'in many places with picturesque thorny mimosa trees,
detached and in groups, imparting to the country the
appearance of an English park. In. the forenoon we
halted for a couple of hours in a broad, well-wooded
hollow, where I found abundance of bustard, Guinea-
fowl, black koran, partridge, and quail. At sundown
we encamped at a place called Daka-Boer's Neck, on
high ground, where the road crosses a bold, precipitous
mountain range. The mountain road, along which we
trekked the following morning, was extremely steep"
and rugged: on my right, high above me, I observed
a herd of upward of a hundred horses, consisting chiefly
of brood-mares and their foals, pasturing on the hill side.
Three more marches brought us to the'village of Cra-
dock, which we reached at dawn of day on Saturday
morning the 2d of October, having twice again had
occasion to cross the Great Fish River.
The country through which we passed was bold,
mountainous, and barren, excepting along the banks of
the river, which were adorned with groves of mimosa
willow, and white thorn, clad with a profusion of rich
yellow blossoms yielding a powerful and fragrant per-
fume. It was now the spring of the year, and, this
* season having been peculiarly favored with rains, a ver-
nal freshness robed these sometimes arid regions, and I
consider that I first saw them under very favorable cir-
cumstances. On the northern bank, at one of the drifts
where we crossed the Fish River, I observed the dry
dung in an old sheep-kraal burning. It was amolder-
ing away after the manner of Scotch peat; and on my
.return from the interior about eighteen months after, onr
my way to Grahkmstown, the dunghill was still burn.





DESCRIPTION OF CRADOCI 63

-ng, and had been burning all the tire, and nevertheless
*lou'y two thirds were consumed. The immense time
which these dunghills require to burn is v&ry singular.
It is quite a common occurrence for one of them to .
burn for three or four rears; and I have been infOrmied
by several respectable farmers of Lower Albany, n ii
whose veracity I could rely, that in that district one of
these." middens," as they are termed in Scotland, burn-
ed for seven years before it was consumed. The heavi-
est and most protracted rains seem to affect them but
little, rarely, if ever, extinguishing them.
Cradock is a pretty little village, situated on the
eastern bank of the Great Fish River,..by which it is
supplied with water and the gardens irrigated. It is
inhabited by Dutch and English, and a goodly spring.
lipg of Hottentotst Mozambiques, and Fingoes. The
principal street is wide, and adorned with shady trees
ot every side, among which I observed lots of peach-
tirees 'covered with green fruit. The houses are large
ahd well built, generally of brick, some in the old Dutch
apd some in the English style. Each house has got a
considerable garden attached to it: these are tastefully
laid out, and contain all the vegetables most used in
an English kitchen. Apples, pears, oranges, quinces,
nectarines, and grapes abound. The vision is bounded
on every side by barren, arid, rooky hills and mount-
ains. I marched right through the town, and out-
spanned about a quarter of.a mile beyond it, and after
breakfast I re-entered the village on foot to purchase
ecessaries for myself and servants. Numbers of Dutch
Ioers, with their wives and families, were assembling
o hold their Nachmahlb r sacrament.
About 11 A.M. we inspanned, and continued our
durney ab(ut five miles, crossing the Great Fish River







64, ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA,
twice, when I halted for some hours upon its bank n
account of rpy oxen, the grass in the vicinity of tlhe
town having been very bare. This was the fifth ard
last time that we crossed the Great Fish River. Here
about a dozen wagons passed us on their way to Cra-
dock, containing Dutch Boers with their fraus and
families. Several of these were horse-wagons, drawn
by eight and ten horses in each wagon, harnessed two
abreast, and drawing by straps across their breasts in-
stead of collars. These straps are generally manufac-
tured of the skin of the lion when it is to be obtained,
that being reckoned by the Boers to be tougher and
more enduring than any other. These long teams are
well managed and dexterously driven by the Boers, one
man holding the reins and another the whip. In the
afternoon I again inspanned, and continued my march
till sundown. The road since I left Cradock had imi-
proved, and was now fine and level, leading through a
wide, open, undulating strath along the northeasterA
bank of the Fish River. The surrounding country pre-
sented in every direction endless chains of barren, stony
mountains; the bold range of the Rhinaster Bergs stand&
ing forth in grand relief to the westward; niot a tree
to be seen, except a few thorny mimosas in some of the
more favored hollows of the hills and along the banks of
the river; the country covered with grass and heathst
dwarfish shrubs, and small thorny bushes.
The sun during the day was powerful, but a cool
breeze prevailed from the south. Ever since I lefl
Grahamstown the weather had been very pleasant, anc
seldom oppressively hot, saving in the low-lying hol
lows where the breezes are not felt. South Africa,
though its climate is dry and sultry, is nevertheless
very salubriouS, being surrounded on three sides by the
*






CLIMATL--IMYNHIEER BETA. 6G
sea, off which a healthy breeze prevails throughout the
greater part of the year. At certain seasons, howev-
er, northerly breezes prevail: these are- termed by the
colonists hot winds." On these occasions the wind
feels as though it were blowing off a furnace in a glass
founder, being heated in its passage over the burning
sands of the Great Kalihari desert.
In Cradock I engaged another Hottentot, named
Jacob, in the capacity of after-rider. Having followed
the course of the Fish River for a distance of aboul
nine miles, our road inclined to the right in a more
northerly direction, and we here bade that stream a
final adieu. Two more marches through a succession
of wide, undulating, sterile plains, bounded on all sides
by bleak and barren mountains, brought us to the
borders of the immense flats surrounding the Thebus
Mountain.
Having followed along-the eastern bank an insignifi-
cant little stream dignified by the appellation of the
Brak River, I arrived at the farm of Mynheer Besta,
a pleasant, hospitable Boer, and a field cornet of the dis-
trict, which means a sort of resident magistrate. Here
we halted to breakfast, and Besta, who is a keen sports-
man, entertained me with various anecdotes and ad-
ventures which had occurred to him during the earlier
days of his sporting career in Albany, where he had
once resided. He informed me that the black'vilde-
beest and springbok were extremely numerous on the
plains immediately beyond his farm, which made me
resolve to saddle up and go in quest of them as soon as
I had breakfasted. The flesh of these animals forms
one of the chief articles of food among the Boers and
their servants who inhabit the district in which they
are abundant; and the skulls and horns of hundreds
*6






66 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
of black wildebeest and springbok were to be seen piled
in heaps and scattered about the out-houses of the
farm. Adjoining the house was a well-watered garden:
with very green trees and corn in it, which formed a
most pleasing contrast with the surrounding barren
country.
Having directed my men to proceed to the next farm
along the banks of the Brak River, I rode forth with
Cobus and held a northerly course across the flats. I
soon perceived herds of springbok in every direction,
which, on my following at a hard gallop, -continued to
join one another until the whole plain seemed alive with
them. Upon our crossing a sort of ridge on the plain,
I beheld #e whole country, as far as my eye could
reach, actually white with springboks, with here and
there a herd of black gnoos or wildebeest, prancing and
capering in every direction, whirling and lashing their
white tails as they started off in long files on our ap-
proach. Having pursued them for many heurs, and
fired about a dozen shots at these and the springboks
at distances of from four to six hundred yards, and,
only wounded onef which I lost, I turned my horse's
head for the camp. The evening set in-dark and low-
ering, wih rattling thunder and vivid flashes of light-
ning on the surrounding hills. I accordingly rode hard
for my wagon, which I just reached in time to escape
a deluge of rain which lasted all night. The Brak
River came down a red foaming torrent, but fell very
rapidly iii the morning. This river is called Brak from
the flavor of its waters, which, excepting in the rainy
season, are barely palatable. My day's sport, although
unsuccessful, was most exciting. I did not feel much
mortified at my want of success, for I was well aware
that recklessly jaging after the game in the manner in





HERDS OF SPRINGBOKS. 67

which I had been doing, although highly exhilarating,
was not the way to fill the bag. Delight at beholding
soqnuch noble game in countless herds on their native
plains was uppermost in my mind, and I felt that at
last I had reached the borders of those glorious hunt-
ing-lands, the accounts of which had been my chief in.
ducements to visit this remote and desolate corner of
tlhe globe; and I rejoiced that I had not allowed the.
advice of my acquaintances to influence my move-
ments.
As I rodealong in the intense and maddening excite-
ment of the chase,I felt a glad feeling of unrestrained
freedom, which was common to me during my career
Sin Africa, and which I had seldom so fully experienced;
-and notwithstanding the many thorns which surround-
ed my roses during the many days- and nights of toil
and hardship which I afterward encountered, I shall
ever-refer to those times as by far the brightest and
h ppiest of my life. On the following morning I rode
through the Brak River to visit Mynheer Pocheter, with
te, intention of buying some horses from him, but he
had none to dispose of. I met the bld fellow coming in
from the "feldt," .with his long single-barreled roer and
enormous flint-lock, with the usual bullock's-horirpow.
ltr-flask dangling at his side. He had gone out with
his Hottentot before the dawn of day, and taken up a
position in a little neck in an uneven part of the plain,
through which the springboks were in the habit of pass-
ilg before sunrise. In places of this description the
Boers build little watching-places with flat stones, from
'which they generally obtain a shot every morning and
eJening, and at such distances as to insure success
To use their own words, .' they secure a buck from hese
places, skot for skot," rr meaning a buck for every shot






68 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
On this occasion, however, our friendohad begin i.
fortunate, returning without venison, although I hid
heard the loud booming of his roer" a short time pre
viously. Theoreport made by these unwieldy guns f,
the Boers, charged with a large handful of coarse gu -
powder, is to be heard at an amazing distance through
the calm atmosphere of these high table-lands; and
during my stay on the flats adjoining Thebus Mdurt-
ain, scarcely an hour elapsed at morning, noon, or eve,
but the distant booming of some "Dutchman's gun sa-
luted the ear. 0
Mynheer Pocheter asked me in to take some kyea -
fast with him, which I did, Cobus acting as interpret-
er, mind host not understanding a word of English, and
I not having at that time acquired the Dutch language,
with which I not long afterward became thoroughly
conversant. After breakfast I took leave of Mynhe r
Pocheter, and having directed the wagon to strike* o it
of the direct road to Colesberg, and hold across t4e
country to the abode of a Boer named Hendric Str -
dom, where the game was represented to me as bei g
extremely plentiful, I again rode forth, accompanied y
Cobus, to wage war with the -springboks. We pricll-
ed over the plain, holding an easterly course, and found,
as yesterday, the springboks in thousands, with hee
and there a herd of black wildebeest. Finding that
by aging on the open plain I could not get within for r
or five hundred yards of them, I left my horses and after-
rider, and set off on foot to a low range of rooky hill ,
where I performed two difficult stalks upon a spring-
bok and a wildebeest, both of which I wounded severe-
ly, but lost. When stalking in upon the springbok
I took off my shoes, and had -very great difficulty in
finding them again. I experienced great distress froA





HUNTING SPRINGBOKS.


thirst. The spn was very powerful, and, nlotwxthstand-
ilig the heavy rains of the preceding evening, a drop of
water was nowhere to be found.
In the afternoon I came to a pool of rlud; the little
water it contained was almost-boiling; I was, however,
rhost thankful to find it, and tears of delight came into
my eyes on discovering it. How trifling was this to
the trials from thirst which I have often since under-
gone! Shortly after this I fell in with my servant,
who, astonished at my long absence, had come in
search of me with the horses. I was right glad to fall
in with him, and, having got into the saddle, I rode
hard across the plain for my wagon. On my way thith-
er I took up a position behind a ridge, and dirEted Co-
bus to "jag" a herd of springbok toward me, which he
did most successfully, sending upward of a hundred of
them right in my teeth. I, however, was still unfor-
tunate, firing both barrels into the herd without doing
ahy apparent injury. On reaching my wagon, which
IIfound outspanned at the desolate abode of Mynheer
I-endrio Strydom, I took a mighty draught of gin and
tater, and then walked, followed by. my interpreter
carrying a bottle of Hollands and glasses, to the door
oi Strydom, to cultivate the acquaintance of himself
and frau, and wearing the garb of old Gaul, in which
I generally hunted during my first expedition, to the
intense surprise of the primitive Boers. Shaking Stry-
dom most cordially by the hand, I told him that I was
a "Berg Scot," or mountain Scotchman, and that it
Was the custom in my country, when friends met, to
pledge one another in a bumper of spirits; at the same
time, suiting the action to the word, I filled him a brim-
ring bumper. This was my invariable practice on
first meeting a Boer. I found it a never:failing meth-






7U ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
od of gaining his good will, and he always replied thIt
the Scotch were the best people in the world.
It is a strange thing that Boers are rather partial to
Scotchmen, although they detest the sight of an Ep-
glishman. They have an idea that the Scotch, lieo
themselves, were a nation conquered by the English,
and that, consequently, we trek in the same yoke as
themselves; and, further, a number of, their ministers
are Scotchmen. Hendric Strydom was a tall, sun-
burned, wild-looking creature, with light sandy hair,
and a long, shaggy red beard. He was a keen hunter,
and himself and household subsisted, in a great meas-
ire, by the proceeds of his long single-barreled "roer."
His fraud was rather a nice little woman, with a fresh
color, and fine dark eyes and eyebrows, and displayed
her .good taste by taking a fancy to me; but perhaps
the tea and coffee which she found I bestowed with a
liberal hand might account for her partiality. Tese
were Boers of the poorer order, and possessed but lit e
of this world's goods. Their abode was in keeping wi h
their means. It was a small mud cottage, with a ro f
which afforded scanty protection from the heavy period
ical rains. The fire burned on the hearthstone, and a
hole in the roof served at once for a window and chi,
ney. The rafters and bare mud walls were adorned
with a profusion of skins of wild animals, and endless
festoons of "biltongue" or sun-dried flesh of game.
Green fields or gardens there were none whatever; the
wild Karroo plain stretched away from the house on a1l
sides; and during the night the springboks and wilde-
beests pastured before the door.
The servants consisted of one old Bushman and hi
wife, and the whole of their worldly possessions were
an old wagon, a span of oxen, a few milch cows, andta






E ENDRIC STRYDOM.


small herd qf goats and sheep. Strydom's revenue
seemed principally to be obtained by manufacturing
ashes, with which he was in the habit of loading up
is wagon and trekking many days' journey into other
istricts, where he sold them to richer Bers. These
ashes are in great demand among all the Boers, as be-
ng an indispensable ingredient in the manufacture of
soap. Every Boer in South Africa.makes his own
soap. There is a low, succulent, green bush from
which the ashes are obtained, which is only found in
certain districts, and in these desolate plains it was very
abundant *
Strydom, having sympathized with me on my con-
inued run of ill luck, remarked that it was quite a
Common thing when "jaging" on the principle which I
,id followed. He said that he was aware that in hunt-
ng on that system an immense amount of ammuni-
io, was expended witn little profit, and that he, being
poor man, very rarely indulged in it; but that, if I
would accompany him after I had taken my coffee,
here being still about two hours of daylight, he would
ow me his method, and he thought it very probable
that we should get a buck that evening. Accordingly,
having partaken of coffee, Strydom and I stalked forth
together across the wild and desolate-looking plain, fol
lowed by two Hottentots, large herds of graceful spring-
boks pastfiring on every side. He placed me behind a
small green bush, about eighteen inches in height, upon
a'wide open flat, instructing me to lie flat on my breast,
and having proceeded some hundred yards, and taken
S* The manner of obtaining this ash is first to dig up the bushes and
collect them on the plains. There they are left until sufficiently dry to
burn, when, a calm day being selected, they are set on fire, and the
amhes are collected and stowed away in large sacks made of the raw
sins of wildebeests and zebras, when they are fit for immediate use






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


up a similar position, he sent the Hottentots round a
herd of springboks which were feeding on the plain, to
endeavor to move them gently toward us. It was
very beautiful thing altogether, and succeeded wel.
Tho whole herd came on slowly, right toward wh6re
lay, until within a hundred yards, when I selected
fine fat buck, which I rolled over with a ball in th
shoulder. This was the first fair shot that I had o -
tained at a springbok on these plains.. I have always
been reckoned by those who know my shooting to be a
very fair rifle-shot, whether standing or running, but I
do not profess to make sure work much beyond o e
hundred and ten paces, or thereabouts.*

The springbok is so termed by the colonists on account of its p
culiar habit of springing or taking extraordinary bounds, rising to
incredible height in the air, when pursued. The extraordinary ma
nor in which springboks are capable of springing is best seen wh n
they are chased by a dog. On these occasions, away start the her
with a succession of strange perpendicular bounds, rising with curvd
loins high into the air, and at the same time elevating the snowy fol
of long white hair on their haunches and along their back, which ii
parts to them a peculiar fairy-like appearance, different from any other
animal. They bound to the height often or twelve feet, with the elis
ticity of an India-rubber ball, clearing at each spring from twelve
fifteen feet of ground, without apparently the slightest exertion.
performing the spring, they appear for an instant as if suspended in t
air, when down come all four feet again together, and, striking the
plain, away they soar again, as if about to take flight. The-herd o0ly
adopt this motion for a few hundred yards, when they subside into a
light elastic trot, arching their graceful necks and lowering their noses
to the ground, as if in sportive mood. Presently pulling up, they face
about, and reconnoiter the object of their alarm. In crossing any pqth
or wagon-road on which men have lately trod, the springbok invara-
bly clears it by a single surprising bound; and when a herd of perhaps
many thousands have to cross a track of the sort, it is extremely beau-
tiful to see how each antelope performs this feat, so suspicious are they
of the ground on which their enemy, man, has trodden.. They boupd
in a similar manner when passing to leeward of a lion, or any other
animal of which they entertain an instinctive dread.
The accumulated masses of living creatures which the springboks

it






AN EARLY START


Two days before this, I brought down a koran fly-
Sing, with single ball. Our chances for this evening
being now over, and night setting in, I returned to the
farm with Strydom in high spirits.





CHAPTER IV.

& Bustard shot-Flight of Locusts-Quagga Shooting in the Dark-
Curious Mistake-Ostriches-A Sportsman napping-Leave Stry
dom's Residence in quest of Wildebeests-Wildebeest Shooting-
Meeting with a Brother Officer-Proceed to Colesberg-Additions to
Equipments.

AT an early hour on the morning of the 6th, while I
was yet in bed, Hendrio Strydom and his frau were
standing over my fire, alongside of my wagon, with a
welcome supply of sweet milk, and hurrying on the in-
dolent Hottentots to prepare my breakfast, and rouse
the4i slothful master, the earliest dawn being, as he
affirmed, the best time to go after the springboks. On
hearing their voices, I rose, and, having breakfasted,
we shouldered our roers," walked about a mile across

exhibit on the greater migrations is utterly astounding, and any trav-
eler witnessing it as I have, and giving a true description of what he
has seen, ann hardly expect to be believed, so marvelous is the scene.
They have been well and truly compared to thtwasting swarms of
locusts, so familiar to the traveler in this land of wonders. Like them,
they consume every green thing in their course, laying waste vast dis-
tricts in a few hours, and ruining in a single night the traits of the farm-
er's toil. The course adopted by the antelopes is generally such as to
bring them back to their own country by a route different from that
by which they set out. Thus their line of march sometimes forms
something like a vast oval or an extensive square, of which the diam
eter may be some hundred miles, and the time occupied in this migra
tion may vary froin six months to a year.
*Voa- I.--D

*





74 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
the plain, and took up positions behind two very love
bushes, about three hundred yards apart, and instruct-
ed our Hottentots to endeavor to drive the springboks
toward us. We had two beats, but were unlucky both
times, each of us wounding and losing a springbok. In
the evening we went out again to hunt on the same
principle, on a very wide flat to the west of his house, i
where we lay down behind very low bushes, in the
middle of the bucks. We lay there on our, breasts for
two hours, with herds of springboks moving all round
us, our Hottentots maneuvering in the distance. On [
small troop came within shot of me, when I sent my
bullet spinning through a graceful doe, which bounded
forward a hundred yards, and, staggering for a moment,
fell over and expired. A little after this, I suddenly
perceived a large paow or bustard walking on the plain
before me. These birds are very wary and difficult to
Approach. I therefore resolved to have a shot at him,
and lay like a piece of rock until he came within range,
when I sent a bullet through him. He managed, how-
ever, to fly about a quarter of a mile, when he alight-
ed; and on going up to the place half an hour after, I
found him lying dead, with his head stuck into a bush
of heath.
Strydom had two family shots, and brought down
with each a well-conditioned buck. In high good-
humor with our success, we now proceeded to gralloch
or disembowel the quarry; after which, each' of us
shouldering a buck,.we returned home in heavy march-
ing order. On the following day I had the pleasure of
beholding the first flight of locusts that I had seen since
my arrival in the colony. We were standing in the
middle of a plain of unlimited length, and about fivo
miles across, when I observed them advancing. On,
*1





A FLIGHT OF LOCUSTS. 75
they came like a snow-storm, flying slow and steady,
about a hundred yards from the ground. I stood look-
ing at them until the air was darkened with their
masses, while the plain on which we stood became
densely covered with them. Far as my eye could
reach-east, west, north, and south-they stretched in
one unbroken cloud, and more than an hour elapsed
before their devastating legions had swept by, I was
particularly struck with this most wonderful and truly
interesting sight; and I remember at the time my
feeling was one of self-gratulation at having visited a
country where I could witness such a scene. On this
day and on the morrow Strydom and I continued to
wage successful war against the springboks. We cross-
ed the small stream called the Thebus River, and hunt-
ed on the plains to the east. On one occasion Hendric
brought down two fat bucks at one shot, which he as-
sured rAe was not an uncommon event with him.
On the morning of the 9th, Strydom and I having
resolved over night to go in quest of a troop of ostriches
which his Hottentot reported, frequenting the plains
immediately adjacent to the Thebus Mountain, we
started our Hottentots two hours before the dawn of
day; and after an early breakfast we saddled up, and
rode direct for the Thebus Mountain. This remarkable
mountain, which I shall ever remember as the leading
feature on the plains where I first really commenced
my African hunting, is of peculiar shape, resembling a
cone depressed at the apex, and surmounted by a round
tower. It is also remarkable as being considerably
higher than the surrounding mountains, with which
the plains are bounded and intersected. As we rode
along, a balmy freshness pervaded the morning air.
We passed through herds of thousands of springboks,





70) ADVENTURES IN SOUIH AFRICA
with small herds of wildebeest scattered among them.
I fired two or three very long shots without success.
Strydom, however, was more fortunate. He fired into
a herd of about a hundred bucks at three hundred yards,
and hit one fine old buck right in the middle of the fore-
head, the ball passing clean through his skull. We hid
him in a hole in the ground, and covered him with
bushes,, and then rode on to our Hottentots, whom we
found waiting beside a small fountain in a pass formed
by a wide gap in a low range of hills, situated between
two extensive plains which were thickly covered with
game. I took up my position in a bush of rushes in
the middle of the pass, and remained there for upward
of eight hours, during which our boys were supposed
to be endeavoring to drive the game toward us.
The Boer took up the best pass about a quarter of a
mile to my right. Before we had been an hour at our
passes, the boys drove up four beautiful ostriches, which
came and stood within fifty yards of Strydom, but,
alas! he was asleep. About this time I was busy try-
ing to remember and practice a childish amusement
which once delighted me as much as rifle-shooting-
namely, making a cap of rushes, when, on, suddenly
lifting up my eyes, I saw standing within eighty yards
of me about a dozen beautiful springboks, which were
coming up to the pass behind me. I snatched up my
rifle, and, lying flat on my breast, sent a bullet through
the best buck in the troop, smashing his shoulder. He
ran about fifty yards, and fell dead. I unfortunately
left him lying exposed in the path, the consequence of
which wadthat three other troops of springboks, which
were coming up* as he had come, were turned to the
right about by his carcass.
It was amusing to see the birds and beasts of prey






HUNTING OSTRICHES.


assembling to dispute the carcass with me. First came
:the common black and white carrion crow, then the
vultures ; the jackals knew the cry of the vultures, and
they too came sneaking from their hiding-places in the
rocks and holes of the ant-bear in the plains to share in
the feast, while I was obliged to remain a quiet spec-
tator, not daring to move, as the game was now in
herds on every side of me, and I expected to see os.
triches every moment. Presently a herd of wildebeest
came thundering down upon me, and passed within
shot. I put a bullet into one of these, too far behind
the shoulder, which, as is always the case with deer
and antelopes, did not seem to affect him in the slight-
est degree. In the afternoon we altered our positions,
and sellt the boys to drive the plain beside which I had
been sitting all day. The quantity of bucks which
were now before, our eyes beat all computation. The
plain extended, without a break, until the eye could
not discern any object smaller than a castle. Through
out the whole of this extent were herds of thousands
and tens of thousands of springboks, interspersed with
troops of wildebeest. The boys sent us one herd of
about three hundred springboks, into which Strydom
let fly at about three hundred yards, and turned them
and all the rest.
It was now late in the day, so we made for home,
taking up the buck which Strydom had shot in the
morning. As we cantered along the flats, Strydon,
tempted by a herd of springboks, which were drawn up
together in a compact body, jumped off hishorse, and,
giving his ivory sight an elevation of several feet, let
drive at them, the distance being about fivd hundred
yards. As the troop bounded away, we could distin-
guish a light-colored object lying in the short heath,






70 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
which he pronounced to be a springbok, and on going
up we found one fine old doe lying dead, shot through
the spine. This day, and"every day since I arrived at
these flats, I was astonished at the number of skeletons
and well-bleached skulls with which the plains were
covered. -Thousands of skulls of springbok and wilde-
beest were strewed around wherever the hunter turned
his eye. The sun was extremely powerful all day, lit,
being intent on the sport, I did not feel it until I found
my legs burned; my dress, as usual, was the kilt, with
S a gray stalking-cap. On reaching home the following
day, a large party of natives, belonging to the chief
Moshesh, arrived on the farm. These poor men were
traveling in quest of employment. Numbers 'of na-
tives annually visit the colony, and work for the-Boers,
making stone inclosures for their cattle, and large dams
or embankments across little streams fn the mouths of
valleys, for the purpose of collecting water in the rainy
season for the supply of their flocks and herds during
the protracted droughts of summer. They are paid
for their labor with young cows or she-goats. The re-
cent rains having washed away the embankment of a
dam situated in a distant range of hills, on the borders
of the farm, Strydom engaged these men to repair it.
The vicinity of the dam being a favorite haunt for
quaggas, and it being necessary that Strydom should
go there on the inorrow, we resolved to hunt in the
neighboring district, in which were situated some high
and rugged hills. Accordingly, next day, we .sallied
forth, and ascended to one of their highest pinnacles,
where I managed to shoot a rhode-raebok. Joining
Strydom shortly afterward, we hunted over another
range of the same hills, where we fell in with three
luaggas and other game Night wa's now fast setting






NIGHT HLNTING. 79

in, so we descended from the hills and made for home.
As we passed down we observed what we took to be a
herd of quaggas and a bull wildebeest standing in front
of us, upon which we jumped off our horses, and, bend-
ing our.bodies, approached them to fire.
It was now quite dark, and it was hard to tell what
sort of game we were going to fire at. Strydom, how-
ever, whispered to me that they were quaggas, and
they certainly appeared to be such. His gun snapped
three times at the wildebeest, upon which they all set
off at a gallop. Strydom, who was riding my stallion,
let go his bridle, when he ran in to fire, taking advant-
age of which the horse set off at a gallop after them
I then mounted The Cow," and after riding hard for
about a mile I came up to them. They were now
standing still, and the stallion was in the middle of
them. I could make him out by his saddle ; so, jump-
ing off my horse in a state of intense excitement, I ran
forward and fired both barrels of my two-grooved rifle
into the quaggas, and heard the bullets tell loudly..
They then started off, but the stallion was soon once
more fighting in the middle of them. I was astonished
and delighted to remark how my horse was able to
take up their attention, so that they appeared heedless'
of the reports of my rifle.
In haste I commenced loading, but to my dismay I
found that I had left my loading-rod with Hendric.
Mounting "The Cow," I rode nearer to the quaggas, .
Sand was delighted to find that they allowed my horse
to come within easy shot. It was now very dark, but
I set off in the hope to fall in with Hendric on the
wide plain, and galloped along, shouting with all my
might, but in vain. I then rode across the plain for
the hill t try to find sl ne bush large enough to make
I






ADVENT'.RES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


a ramrod.' In this, by the greatest chance, I succeed.
ed, and, being provided with a knife, I cut a good ram-
rod, loaded my rifle, and rode off to seek the quaggas
once more. I soon fell in with them, and, coming with-
in shot, fired at them right and left, and heard both bul-
lets tell, upon which they galloped across the plain,
with the stallion still after them. One-of them, how-
ever, was very hard hit, and soon dropped astern. The
stallion remained to keep him company.
About this time the moon shone forth faintly. 1
galloped on after the troop, and presently coming up
with them, rode on one side, and dismounting, and
dropping on my knee, I sent a bullet through the shoul-
der of the last quagga; he staggered forward, fell to
the ground with a heavy crash, and expired. The rest
of the troop charged wildly around him, snorting and
prancing like the wild horses in Mazeppa, and then set
off at full speed across the plain. I did not wait to
bleed the quagga, but, mounting my horse, galloped on
.after the troop: I could not, however, overtake them.
I now returned, and endeavored to find the quagga
which I had last shot; but, owing to the darkness, and
to my having no mark to guide me on the plain, I fail-
"ed to find him. I then set off to try for the quagga
which had dropped astern with the stallion. Having
searched some time in vain, I dismounted, and laid my
head on the ground, when I made out two dark ob
jects, which turned out to be what I sought. On my
approaching, the quagga tried to make off, when I sent
a ball through his shoulder, which laid him low. On
going up to him in the full expectation of inspecting for
the first time one of these animals, what was my dis-
appointment and vexation to find a fine brown gelding,.
with two white stars on his forehead! The truth now






A SAD MISTAKE. yl

flashed upon me; Strydom and I had both been mis
taken; instead of quaggas, the wagon-team of a neigh.
boring Dutchman had afforded me my evening's shoot.
ing!
I caught my stallion and rode home, intending to
pay for the horses which I had killed and wounded;
but on telling my story to Strydom, with which he
seemed extremely amused, he told me not to say a
word about it, as the owners of the horses were very
avaricious, and would make me pay treble their value,
and that, if I kept quiet, it would be supposed they had
been killed either by lions or wild Bushmen. Strydom
and I continued hunting springboks till the.17th, dur-
ing which time we enjoyed a constant run of good luck,
and so fascinating was the sport that I felt as though
I never could tire of it. It was, indeed,-a country
where a person who loved rifle-shooting ought to have
been content. Every morning, on opening my eyes,
the first thing which I saw, without raising my head
from the pillow, was herds of hundreds of springboks
grazing before me on the plains. On the 17th, an old
friend of Strydom's, a Boer from Magalisberg, outspan-
ned on the farm. He had been to Grahamstown with
a load of ivory, and was returning home with supplies
of tea, coffee, clothing, &c., sufficient for two years'
consumption. He was accompanied by his wife and
two tall gawky-looking daughters, and half a dozen
noisy geese, which were secured in a cage on the trap
of the wagon. This Boer informed me that I could
Sget all the rarer animals which I wished to shoot in his
vicinity, namely, sable antelope, roan antelope, eland,
Swater-buck, koodoo, pallah, elephant, black and white
rhinoceros, hippopotamus, giraffe, buffalo, lion, &o.
SHe told me he had shot elephants there with tusks
D2







82 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
weighing one hundred pounds each, and upward of
seven feet in length. He advised me not to visit that
country before the end of April, as my horses would
assuredly die of a never-failing distemper which pre-
vails in the interior, within a certain latitude, during
the summer months.
Being anxious now to devote my attention more par-
ticularly to black wildebeests, of which I had not yet
secured a specimen,' I resolved to take leave of my
friend Hendric Strydom, and proceed to the plains
beyond the Thebus Mountain, where he informed me
they abounded. Accordingly, about 9 P.M., having
inspanned by moonlight, I took leave of my friend,
having presented him with a coffee-mill and some
crockery, to which his frau had taken a fancy, and
also with a.supply of coarse gunpowder, which is to a
Boer a most acceptable gift. We held for the Thebus
Mountain, steering across the open plains and follow-
ing no track, with springboks and wildebeests whistling
and bellowing on every side of us. About midnight
we halted by a fountain near the pass where a few
days before I had lain in ambush for eight hours, and
as it was probable that the oxen would wander during
the night, we secured them on the yokes. Two of my
oxen and both my horses were reported missing when
we left the farm, and I had left Cobus to seek for them.
In the afternoon of the next day my two servants
joined me, bringing with them the lost oxen, but having
failed to find the steeds. At night I took up a position
in an old shooting-hole beside the vley, to watch for
wildebeests. Several jackals, wildebeests, quaggas,
and hymnas came tb drink during the night, but, not
being able to see the sight of my rifle, I did not fire.
Here I remained until the bright star 3f morning had






WILDEBEEST SHOOTING.


risen far above the horizon, and day was just beginning
to dawn, when, gently raising my head and looking
round, I saw, on one side of me, four wildebeests, and
on the other' side ten. They were coming to drink;
slowly and suspiciously they approached the water,
and, having convinced themselves that all was right,
they trotted boldly,up and commenced drinking. Se-
lecting the finest lull, I fired, and sent a bullet through
his shoulder, when, splashing through the water, he
bounded madly forward, and, having run about a hund-
red yards, rolled over in the dewy grass. I did not
show myself, other game being in sight, but lay still in
the hole. In about an hour an old springbok fed up to
within three hundred yards of me, and continued brows-
ing there for a considerable time. As no more wilde-
beests seemed to be. approaching, and as I was very
hungry, I put up my sight and took a cool, calculating
aim at him, and sent the ball through the middle of his
shoulder. I then left my hole, and, having inspected
the wildebeest bull, which was a noble specimen, I
walked up to my wagon, and sent the boys to cut up
the venison and preserve the head carefully.
On the following morning I woke as day dawned,
and held for my hole beside the vley, but had not gone
two hundred yards round the hillock when I saw an
old springbok feeding, which I stalked, and broke his
fore-leg. He went off toward the wagon, when the
boys slipped Gauger" (one of my greyhounds), who
at once ran into him and pulled him down. Having
lain about an hour at the vley, two old wildebeests ap-
proached up wind, and, suspecting the ground, described
a wide semicircle, like our red deer. I wounded one
of them, but he did not drop. I, however, managed to
mend a ball through the shoulder of the other, when he


8W2s






A4 ADVENTURESoIN SOUTH AFIitICA.

ran several hundred yards, whisking his long white tail
as if all was right, and suddenly rolled over in full ca-
reer. His skin had a delicious smell of the grass and
wild herbs on which these animals lie and feed. On
.proceeding to my wagon, I found all my men asleep.
Having gralloched the wildebeest, we bore him bodily
to the wagon on the lechtezuit," which is a bar of
hard wood used in greasing the wagon wheels, when I
immediately set about curing the head, it being a very
fine one.
On the following morning Cobus returned, having
found my two horses. While taking my breakfast, I
observed a gentleman approaching on horseback; this
was Mr. Paterson, an officer of the 91st, a detachment
of which was then quartered at Colesberg. Lieutenant
Borrow, a brother officer of mine, had intrusted me
with the care of a rifle which he was sending to Mr.
Paterson, and, as I had been a long time on the road,
he had now come to look after it. He was a keen
sportsman, and I had much pleasure in meeting so
agreeable a person in the wilderness. Having joined
me in my rough breakfast with a true hunter's appe-
tite, we rode forth together to look for the wildebeest I
had wounded in the morning, expecting to find him
dead. On reaching the ground, we found five small
herds of wildebeests charging about the plain, and for
a long time could not discover the wounded one; at
length I perceived an old bull with his head drooping,
which I at once pronounced tobe my friend. On' ob-
serving him, we dismounted and watched him for a
short time. The others inclined to make off, but seem.
ed unwilling to leave him. Being now convinced that
this was the wildebeest we sought, we determined to
give him chase, and try to rid, into him; but, just ai






ARRIVAL AT @OLESBERG. '"
vweLad come to this resolution, he'fell violently to-the
ground, raising a cloud of dust. On riding up to him
we found him dead.
Paterson and I then made for the vley, and had not
proceeded two hundred yards when, on looking back, I
saw about thirty large vultures standing on the wilde-
beest, which in a very short space of time they would
have devoured. On the morrow Paterson left me and
rode back"for Colesberg, having first extracted a prom-
ise that I would follow him within three days. I ac-
cordingly hunted until that time had expired, when I
reluctantly inspanned and marched upon Colesberg.
Three long marches brought us to the farm of a Boer
named Penar, who had been recommended to me as
having a good stamp of horses, and as being reasonable
in his prices. I was, however, disappointed with his
stud, and, finding him exorbitant in his prices, no busi-
ness was transacted. The country continued much
the same-wide Karroo plains, bounded by abrupt rocky
mountains. One more long march brought us within
five miles of.Colesberg, where I halted for the night.
On the 27th, having taken an early breakfast, we
trekked into Colesberg, where, having chosen a position
for my camp, I outspanned and took up my quarters
with Paterson. The village 6f Colesberg is so called
from a conspicuous, lofty table-mountain in its imme-
diate vicinity, which takes its name from a former gov-
'rnor of the colony. The town is situated in a confin-
ed hollow, surrounded on all sides by low rocky hills.
The formation of these rooks is igneous, and the way
in which they are distributed is very remarkable.
Large and shapeless masses are heaped together and
piled one above another, as if by the hand of some
mighty giant of the olden times. The town is weq






^ ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
applied with water from a strong fountain which
burrsts from the base of one of. these rocky hillocks above
the level of the town, and by which the small gardens
adjoining the houses are irrigated. Abundance of
water is the only advantage that the situation can
boast of. In the town are several large stores, from
which the Boers of the surrounding districts can obtain
every necessary article-in their domestic economy.
S Numbers of these farmers attend the market weekly
with their, wagons, bringing in the produce of their
farms and gardens; and, on sacramental occasions,
which happen four times every year, the town is inun-
dated with Boers, who bring in their families in horse-
wagons. OWing to the unsettled state of the country,
troops were then stationed at Colesberg. The garrison
consisted of about two hundred men of the 91st, under
-ooirmand of my cousin, Colonel Campbell, and one com-
pany of the Cape Mounted Rifles, commanded by Cap-
tain Donovan. Colesberg was in those days a pleasant
quarter, as there was not much pipe-clay, and very good
shooting could be obtained within a few hours of can-
tonment.
In the forenoon we had some rifle practice at a large
.granite stone above the town, which the privates of the
91st were wont to pepper on ball-practice days. On
this occasion I saw some yery good shooting by Camp-
bell, Yarborough, Bailey, and Paterson, all officers of
the 91st, and about the four best shots on the frontier.
These four Nimrods had a short time previously boldly
challenged any four Dutchmen of the Graaf Reinet or
Colesberg districts to shoot against them. The chal-
lenge was accepted by four Dutchmen, who, of course,
got '.'jolly well licked."
After spending a few days very pleasantly with the






PURCHASES.

garrison, I resolved to hunt on and afout
until the end of March, at which time the h
emper begins to subside, when I proposed starting .
n elephant-hunting expedition into the more remote
districts of the far interior. In Colesberg I purchased,
y the kind recommendation of Captain Donovan, a
second wagon of the.cap-tent kind, which turned out
o be an unusually good one. Its price was I
lso purchased an excellent span of black and white
xen from a Dutch blacksmith in the town. From
onovan I bought a dark-brown horse, which I named
olesberg. His price was three hundred dollars, and
e was well worth double that sum, for a better steed
Never crossed.. I purchased from a Boer im the town
another horse, well known to the garrison by the sobri-
uet of the Immense Brute." He was once the prop.
rty of Captain Christie of the 91st. When, on oWp
ceasion, having wandered, an advertisement appeared
n one of the frontier papers relative to an "immense
rute" in the shape of a tall bay horse, the property of
aptain Christie, &c., &c., and ever since he had been
distinguished by this elegant appellation. I exchanged
y brown stallion with Colonel Campbell for an active
ray, which I considered better adapted to my work.
lass was at this time at a premium in Colesberg,
very window in the town having been smashed by a
recent hail-storm. I loaded up my new wagon with
arley, oats, and forage for my horses, they having very
hard work before them-hunting the oryx, upon which
Swas more immediately bent, being more trying to
horses than any other sport in South Africa.
My intention was to revisit Colesberg in four or five
months, and refit, preparatory to starting for the far in
terior. I left the skulls andi specimens of natural his


\







TRES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


ad already collected in the charge 9f my
Dickson, a merchant in Colesberg. During
stay in Colesberg my men were in a constant state
of beastly intoxication, and gave me much trouble, and
my oxen and horses were constantly reported in the
" skit-kraal" or pound. I engaged one more Hottentot,
named John Stofolus, as driver to the new wagon. He
was an active, stout little man, and very neat-handed
at stuffing the heads of game, preserving specimens, or
any other little job which I might give him to do. He
was, however, extremely fond of fighting with his com-
rades, and was ever boasting of his own prowess; bul
when his courage was put to the proof in assisting me
to hunt the more dangerous animals, he was found wo.
fully deficient.




CHAPTER V.

Departure from Colesberg-Jaging Springbok-Vast Herds of Game-
Swarms of Flies-Oology-A Nomade Boer's Encampment-Anec
dote of the Gemsbok-Cobus rides down a splendid old Bull Gems
bok-A Night in the Desert-Paterson arrives-Bushmen-Their ex
traordinary Raids across the Desert

ON the evening of the 2d of December, with consid-
erable difficulty I collected my drunken servants, m3
oxen and horses, and, taking leave of my kind enter.
tainers, trekked out of Colesberg, steering west for the
vasi Karroo plains, where the gersbk were said to b(
still abundant. It was agreed that Campbell should
follow me on the second day to hunt springbok anc
black wildebeest, in a district through which I was t(
travel; and Paterson had applied for a fortnight's leave






JAGING SPRINJBOK.


with the intention of joining me in the gemsbok coun- "
try, and enjoying along with me, for a few days, the
exciting sport of agingn" that antelope. I did not pro-
ceed very far that evening, my men being intoxicated,
and having several times very nearly capsized the wag-
ons. I halted shortly after sup~doawn, whenall the:work
with the ox -aundihotes-f ling upon me, and u o fuel
being a-tiand, I was obliged to content myself t..n-
ing-oin a handful of raw meal and a glass of-gin and--.
water. On the following day we performed two long
marches, crossing the Sea-Cow River, and halted as it
grew dark on a Boer's farm where the plains were cov-
ered with springbok. Here Campbell had instructed
me to await his arrival, and next morning he was seen
approaching the wagons, mounted on the "Immense
Brute," and leading two others.
Having breakfasted, we started on horseback to "jag"
springbok and wildebeest, ordering the wagons to pro-
ceed to a vley about four miles to the west. We gal-
loped about the plains, loading and firing for about six
hours. The game was very wild. I wounded three
springboks and one wildebeest, but lost them all.
Campbell shot two springboks. The first was entirely
eaten by the vultures (notwithstanding the bushes with
which we had covered him), and skinned as neatly as
if done by the hand of man. The second had its leg
broken by the ball, and was making off, when a jackal
suddenly appeared on the bare plain, and, giving him
chase, after a good course ran into him.*
This is a very remarkable and not unfrequent occurrence. Often
when a springbok is thus wounded, one or more jackals suddenly ap-
pear.and assist the hunter in capturing his quarry. In the more distant
hunting-lands of the interior, it sometimes happens that the lion assists
the sportsman in a similar manner with the larger animrjia thp ugh
this may appear like a traveler's story, it is nevertin







ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


Next morning, having bathed and breakfasted, Camp.
bell and I parted, he for Colesberg and I for the Karroo,
I trekked on all day, and, having performed a march
of twenty-five miles, halted at sundown on the farm of
old Wessel, whom I found very drunk. My road lay
through vast,plains Jintersected with ridges of stony
hills. Oii these plains I found-th6,game.:n herds ex-
ceedihg any thing I had yet seen--springbok i, troops
6f at least ten thousand; also large bodies of quaggas,
wildebeest, blesbok, and several ostriches. I had hoped
to have purchased some horses from Wessel, but he was
too drunk to transact any business, informing me that
he was a B6er, and could not endure the sight of En--
glishmen, at the same time shoving me out of the house,
much to the horror of his wife and daughters, who
seemed rather nice people.
Two more days of hard marching, under a burning
sun, brought me to the farm of Mynheer Stinkum,
which I reached late on the evening of the 7th. H,
informed me that about fifteen miles to the west of his
farm I should fall in with a Boer of the wandering tribe
who would direct me to a remote vley in the Karroo, a
stances of the kind happened both to myself and to Mr. Oswell of theo
H. E. I. C. S., a dashing sportsman, and one of the best hunters I ever
met, who performed two hunting expeditions into the interior. Mr.
Oswell and a companion were one day galloping along the shady banks
of the Limpopo, in full pursuit of a wounded buffalo, when they were
suddenly joined by three lions, who seemed determined to dispute the
chase with them The buffalo held stoutly on, followed by the three
lions, Oswel] and his companion bringing up the rear. Very soon the
lions sprang upon the mighty bull and dragged him to the ground, when
the most terrific scuffle ensued. Mr. Oswell andfriend thep approached
and opened their fire upon the royal family, and, as each ball struck the
lions, they seemed to consider it was a poke from the horns of the buffia-
lo, and redoubled their attentions to him. At ength.the sportsmen suc-
ceeded iihawiding over two of the lions, upon which the third, finding
travel; and'i for him, made off.






Pages
91 92
are missing
from the
original






WILD GEESE AND OTII R GAME.- 9o
ion, and he had elsjfine old bull feedin(urses of both
,otting on the plainicir long, sharp I -on being trans-
fxed.by the long, sh-,the, cheesp.,fn~_o erful gemsbok
o that he could not extract them, and thus both had
perishedd together. He also mentioned that, notwith-
Standing the agility, of the springbok, he had often
lmown the lion dash to the -ground t'o, three, and four
n quick succession in a troop.
Four of my oxen being footsore and unable to pro-
ceed, I left them in charge of old Sweirs, and in the
cool of the evening I inspanned, and, having proceeded
about file miles through an extremely wild and deso-
late-looking country, on clearing a neck in a range of
low, rocky hills I came full in view of the vley or pool
of water beside which I had been directed to encamp.
The breadth of this vley was about -three hundred
yards. One side of it was grassy, and patronized by
several flocks of Egyptian wild geese, a species of bar-
iacle, wild dficks, egrets, and cranes. The other side
as bare, and here the game drank, and the margin
f the water was trampled by the feet of wild animals
Slke an English horse-pond. There being no trees be-
.lide which to form our camp, we drew up our wagons
:lmong some low bushes, about four hundred yards
iom the vley. When the sun went down I selected
the three fiorses which were to carry myself and two
4fter-riders in the chase of the unicorn on the following
morning, and directed my boys to give them a liberal
supply of forage to eat during the night.*
The oryx, or gemsbok, to which I was now about to direct my at-
tpntion more particularly, is about the most beautiful and remarkable
of all the antelope tribe. It is the animal which is supposed to have
given rise to the fable of the unicorn, from its long, straight horns, when
*en, si profile, so exactly covering one another as to give it the aps
srance of having but one. It possesses the erect mane, long, sweep






94 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.

On the y-ihing having beep
made rea y or 'e, saddled up, and
started, antou-ral acorpanied by Co-
bus and Jacob as after-riders, leading a spdre hours'
with my pack-saddle. We held a southwesterly course,
and at length reached the base of a little hillock slight.
ly elevated above' the surrounding scenery. Here I
dismounted, and, having ascended to the summit, ex-
amined the country all around minutely with my spy.*
-glass, hut could not see any thing like the oryx. i
was in the act of putting up my glass again, when, to
my intense delight, I perceived, feeding within four
hundred yards, in a hollow between two hillocks, a glo-
rious herd of about five-and-twenty of the long-wished-
ing black tail, and general appearance of the horse, with the head and
hoofs of an antelope. It is robust in*its form, squarely and compactly
built, and very noble in its bearing. Its height is about that of an ass,
and in color it slightly resembles that animal. The beautiful black
bands which eccentrically adorn its head, giving it the appearance of
wearing a stall-collar, together with the manner in wfich the rump ayId
thighs are painted, impart to it a character peculiar to itself. The adult
male measures three feet ten inches in height at the shoulder,
The gemsbok was destined by nature to adorn the parched karro a
and arid deserts of South Africa, for which description of country it a
admirably adapted. It thrives and attains high condition in barren r- .
gions, where it might be imagined that a locust would not find subsist -
ence, and, burning as is the climate, it is perfectly independent of w -
ter, which, from my own observation, and the repeated reports bot
of the Boers and aborigines, I am convinced it never by any chance
,tastes. Its flesh is deservedly esteemed, and ranks next to the elan .
At certain seasons of the year they carry'a great quantity of fat, at which
time they can more easily be ridden into. Owing to the even natu
of the ground which the oryx frequents. its shy and suspicious dispos-
tion, and the extreme distances from water to which it must be follow
ed, it is never stalked or driven to an ambush like other antelopes, b
is hunted on horseback, and.ridden down by a long, severe, tail-on-eni
chase. Of several animals in South Africa which are hunted in this
manner, and may be ridden into by)a horse, the oryx is by far the swift
eat and most enduring. They are widely diffused throughout the col
ter and western parts of South Africa.







HUNTING GEMSBOKS. 95

for gemsbok, with a fine old bull feeding at a little dis.
tance by himself, their long, sharp horns glancing in
the morning sun like the cheese-toasters of a troop of
dragoons. I scarcely allowed myself a moment to feast
my eyes on the thrilling sight before me, when I re-
Iturned to my boys, and with them concerted a plan to
circumvent them.*
We agreed that Jacob and I should endeavor to ride
* by a circuitous course a long way to windward of the
herd, and that Cobus should then give chase and drive
them toward us. The wind was westerly, but the dis-
trict to which this herd seemed to belong unfortunate-
ly lay to the northward. Jacob and I rode steadily on,
,occasionally looking behind us, and, presently taking
up a commanding position, strained our eyes in the di-

At this time I was very much in the dark as to the speed of the
gemsbok, having been led bya friend to believe that a person even
3f my weight, if tolerably mounted, could invariably, after a long chase,
rido right into them. This, however, is not the case. My friend was
deceived in the opinion which he had formed. The fact of the matter
was, that hb had been hunting a long way to windward of a party who
were hunting on the same plains with him, and several of the gemsboks
which he had killed had previously been severely chased by the other
party. In the whole course of my adventures with gemsbok I only re-
member four occasions, when mounted on the pick of my stud (which
I nearly sacrificed in the attempt), that alone and unassisted I succeed-
ed in riding the oryx to a stand-still. The plan which I adopted, and
which is generally used by the Boers, was to mount my light Hotten-
tots or Bushmen on horses of great endurance, and thus, as it were,
convert them into greyhounds, with which I coursed the gemsbok as
we do stags in Scotland with our rough deer-hounds. A tail-on-end"
chase is sometimes saved, in parts where the hunter, from a previous
knowledge of the country, knows the course which the gemsbok will
take; when, having first discovered the herd,'the after-rider is directed
to remain quiet until the hunter shall have proceeded by a wide semi-
circular course some miles to wvindward of the herd, which being ac
complished, the Hottentot gives the troop a tremendous burst toward
his master, who, by riding hard for their line, generally manages to go~
within easy shot as the panting herd strains past him.






90 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA
reaction of the gemsboks, in the full.expectation of see.
ing them flyiin toward us. After waiting a consider.
able time and nothing appearing, I felt convinced that
we were wrong, and in this conjecture I judged.well.1
A slight inequality in the plain had concealed from our
view the retreating herd, which had started in a north |
early course. Cobus had long since dashed into the
nerd, and was at that moment flying across the plains
after them, I knew not- in what direction. After gal
loping athwart the boundless plains in a state border.
ing on distraction, I gave it up, and, accompanied by
Jacob, returned to the wagons in any thing but a
placid frame of mind.
About two hours after, Cobus reached the wagon,
having ridden the old bull to a stand-still. The old
fellow had lain down repeatedly toward the end of the
chase, and at length could proceed no further, and
Cobus, after waiting some time and seeing no signs of
his master, had reluctantly left him. In the height of
the day the sun was intensely powerful; I felt mucl
disgusted at my want of luck in my first attempt, and
burning with anxiety for another trial, I resolved t
take the field again in the afternoon, more especially
as we had not a pound of flesh in camp. Between
and 4 P.M. I again sallied forth with the same after-
riders leading a spare horse. We cantered across plain
to the northeast, and soon fell in with ostriches an
quaggas, and, after riding a few miles through rather
bushy ground, a large herd of hartebeest cantered across
our path, and these were presently joined by two o
three herds of quaggas and wildebeests;which kept r -
treating as we advanced, their course being marked b
clouds of red dust. At length I perceived a herd of as-
colored bucks stealing right away ahead of the other


'0






EXCITING CHASE. 97
game; I at once knew them to be gemsbok, and gave
chase at a hard canter. I gradually gained upon them,
and, after riding hard for about twomiles, I ordered
Cobus to go ahead and endeavor to close with them.
At this moment we had reached the border of a slight
depression on the plain, down which the herd led, af-
fording me a perfect view of the exciting scene. The
gemsbok now increased their space, but Cobus's horse,
which was a good one with a very light weight, gained
upon them at every stride, and before they had reach-
ed the opposite side of the plain he was in the middle
of the foaming herd, and had turned out a beautiful
cowwith a pair of uncommonly fine long horns.- In
one minute he dexterously turned her in my direction,
Sand, heading her, I obtained a fine chance, and rolled
her over with two bullets in her shoulder. My thirst
was intense, and, the gemsbok having a fine breast of
milk, I milked her into my mouth, and obtained a drink
of the sweetest beverage I ever tasted.
While I was thus engaged, Cobus was shifting his
saddle from the Immense Brute" to the gray, which
being accomplished, I ordered him to renew the chase
and try to ride down the old bull for me. We fasten-
ed the "Immense Brute" to a bush beside the dead
gemsbok, and then, mounting the horse which Jacob
had been riding, I followed on as best I might. On
gaining the first ridge, I perceived the troop of oryx
about two miles ahead of me, ascending another ridge
at the extremity of the plain, and Cobus riding hard
for them about a mile astern, but rapidly gaining on
them. Oryx and boy soon disappeared over the dis-
tant ridge, the boy still far behind. The country here
Changed from grass and bushes to extreme sterility;
Sthe whole ground was undermined with the holes of
SVOL. I.-E






98 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.
colonies o meercat or mouse-hunts. This burrowed
ground, which is common throughout these parts, was
extremely distressing to our horses, the soil giving way
at every step, and my steed soon began to flag.. On
gaining the distant ridge a wide plain lay before me.
I looked in every direction, straining my eyes to catch
a glimpse of Cobus and the oryx, but they were no-
where to be seen. At length, after riding about tw
miles further in the direction which he seemed to hol
when I had last seen him, I detected his white shir
on a ridge a long way to my right, and on coming u
to him I found that he had ridden the old bull to a4
stand-still: the old fellow was actually lying panting
beside a green bush. I thought him one of the most
lovely.animals I had ever beheld, and I could have gaz-
ed for hours at him; but I was now many miles from
my wagons, without a chance of water, and dying ol
thirst, so I speedily finished the poor oryx, and having
carefully cut off the head, commenced skinning him. i
It was now late-too late to take home the cow ory:
that night; the bull was much too far from my camp
to think of saving any part of the flesh. I therefore
sent off Cobus to the wagons to fetch water and bread
desiring him to meet me at a spot where the cow gems.
bok was lying, where I resolved to sleep, to protect he"
from hymnas and jackals; but before Jacob and I haW
accomplished the skinning, and secured the skin anl
the head upon the horse, night had set in. My thirs)
was now fearful, and becoming more and more ragin
I would have given any thing I possessedfor a bottle
of water. In the hope of meeting Cobis, Jacob and
rode slowly forward.,and endeavored to find out th
place; but darkness coming on, and there being n
feature in the desert to guide me, I lost my way en.

.






A NIGHT IN THE DESERT. 99
tirely, and after wandering for several hours in the dark,
and firing blank shots at intervals, we lay down in the
open plain to sleep till morning, having tied our horses
to a thorny bush beside where we lay. I felt very cold
all night, but my thirst continued raging. My clothes
consisted of a shirt and a pair of knee-breeches. My
bed was the bull's hide laid over a thorny bush, which
imparted to my tough mattress the elasticity of a feath-
r bed. Havingslept about two hours, I awoke, and
found that our horses had absconded; after which I
lept little. Day dawned, and I rose; and on looking
about, neither Jacob nor I had the most remote idea
(f'ta e ground we were on, nor of the position of our
pamp.
i Within a few hundred yards of us was a small hill,
which we Icended and looked about, but could not in
the least recognize the ground. I, however, ascertain-
ed the points of the compass and the position of my
paimp by placing my left hand toward the rising sun.
I was then returning to the spot where I had slept,
when suddenlyI perceived, standing within three hund-
red yards of me, the horse which I had fastened beside
the cow oryx on the preceding evening, and on going up
I found both all right. I immediately saddled'the horse
and rode hard for camp, ordering Jacob to commence
skinning the cow, and promising to send him water and
bread ds soon as I reached the wagons.
SOn my way thither I met Cobus on horseback, bear-
ing bread and a bottle of water, wandering he knew
not whither having entirely lost his reckoning. My
thirst had by this time departed, so I did not touch the
after, but allowed him to take iton to Jacob. He in-
ormed me that John Stofolus was coming on with the
aggage-wagon to take up the venisdh, and before rid






100 ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AF RICA.
ing far ITfell in with him, having, -with a Ilottentot'
usual good sense, come away without water in tha
casks. Having shown him how to steer, I rode on t
the carhp, which I was right glad to reach,- and felt
much refreshed with a good bowl of tea. I was active.
ly employed during the rest' of the day in preserving the
two oryx-heads for my collection. In the evening a
horseman on a jaded steed was seen approaching the
wagons, accompanied by an after-rider leading a spare
horse. This was my friend Paterson, who had su -
ceeded in obtaining a fortnight's leave of absence, an
with whom that evening, over a gemsbok stew, I
" fought my battles o'er again." *Our respective stucs
being considerably done up and in need of rest, the
following day was devoted to "dulce otium," washing
our rifles, and writing up the log. '
On the 14th we went out on foot after a troop qf
ostriches, one of which we wounded, and came home
much exhausted. The very ground was as hot as the
side of a stove. The following day we were visited by
a party of Boers from the neighboring encampments,
who had come to see how we were getting on. Find-
ing our brandy good, they made themselves very agreea-
ble, and sat for many hours conversing with us. The
leading subject of conversation was gerpsbok and lion
shooting, and the slaying and capturing of whole tribes
of marauding Bushmen in by-gone days. They in.
formed us that when they first occupied these districts
the game was far more abundant, and eland arid: ob-
doos were plentiful. Their herds of cattle were con-
stantly attacked and plundered by the vindictive wild
Bushmen.* The Boers informed us that in a country
Unlike the Caffre tribes, who lift cattle for the purpose of preserve.
ing them and breeding from them, the sole object of the Bushmen is-

11







AIDS OF THE BUSHMIEN. 101
to the southwest4f our actual position, a tri e of these
natives for many years were in the habit of practicing
raids with impunity upon the herds of the farmers in
the Raw-feldt, assisted by a vast and impracticable des-
ert which intervened between their country, and the
more fertile pastoral districts.. They seemed to prefer
extremely dry seasons for these incursions, their object
in this being that their pursuers, who of course follow-
ed on horseback while they were always on foot, should
not obtain water for their horses. Their own wants
in this respect they provided for in the following curi-
ous manner. They had regular stages at long inter-
vals in a direct line across the desert, where, assisted
by their wives, they concealed water in ostrich eggs,
whichthey brought from amazing distances, and these
spots, being marked by some slight inequality in the
grountl, they could discover either by day or night from
their perfect knowledge of the country. They were
thus enabled fearlessly to drive off a herd of cattle, whose
sufferings from thirst gave them little concern, and to
travel day and night, while their mounted pursuers, re.

drive them to their secluded habitations in the desert, where they mas-
sacre them indiscriminately, and continue feasting and gorging them-
selves until the flesh becomes putrid. When a Kaffir has lifted cattle,
and finds himsel~o hotly pursued by the owners that he can not escape
with his booty, he betakes himself to flight, and leaves the cattle un-
scathed; but the'spit1ul Bushmen have a most provoking and cruel
system of horribly mutilating the poor cattle when they find that they
are likely to fall into the hands of their, rightful owners, by discharging
their poisoned arrows at them, hamstringing them, and cutting lumps
of flesh off their living carcasses. This naturally so incenses the owners
that they never show the Bushmen any quarter, but shoot them down
right and left, sparing only the children, whom they tame and convert
into servants. The people whobsuffer from these depredations are
Boers, Griquas, and Bechuanas, all of whom are possessed of large herds
of cattle, and ie massacres of the Bushmen, arising from these raid,
are endless.

*". .* *.
..:-."*': **: :* .
,.. .*. .* .* ..* .




- r-- L' :;----z -- -2;= -= ..



102 aDVlIN'T1"1amFR IN SOUTH AFRICA.

quiring light to hold the spoor, coul"necessahily only
follow by day, and were soon obliged to give up the pur-
suit on account of their horses being without water







CHAPTER VI.
Hard Chase of an Oryx-A brindled Gnoo reduces himself to a death
Lock," and is taken-Paterson slays a Gemsbok and a Bull Wilde-
beest-He leaves for Colesberg-OstrichEggs-Novel Method of
carrying them-Anecdotes of the Ostrich-Affray with a Porcupine
-He proves a rough Rider for my Horse-Narrow Escape from the
Thrust of a dying Oryx-The grateful Water-root-Troops ofSpring-
boks cover the Face of the Land-Their Migrations-The finest shot
at my Leisure-Beer Vley.

AT an early hour on the morning of the 16th Pat-
erson and I again took the field, accompanied by our
three after-riders, and, having ridden several miles in
a northerly direction, we started an oryx, to which Pat-
erson and his after-rider gave immediate chase. I then
rode in an easterly direction, and shortly fell in with a
fine old cow oryx, which we instantly charged. She
stole away at a killing pace, her black tail streaming
in the wind, and her long, sharp horn laid well back
over her shoulders. Aware of her darer, and anxious
to gain the desert, she put forth her utmost speed, and
strained across the bushy plain. She led us a tearing
chase of upward of five miles in a northerly cdirse, Co-
bus sticking well into her and I falling far behind.
0 After a sharp burst of about three miles, Cobus and
the gray disappeared over a ridge about half a mile
ahead of me I here mounted a fresh horse, which had


:* : ... ..
.. .






EXCITING CHASE IUJ
oeen led by Jacob, and followed. On gaining the ridge,
I perceived the gray disappearing over another ridge a
fearfully long way ahead. When I reached this point
I commanded an extremely extensive prospect, but no
living object was visible on the desolate plain.
While deliberating in which direction to ride, I sud-
denly heard a pistol shot 'some distance to my left,
which I knew to be Cobus's signal that the oryx was
at bay. Having ridden half a mile, I discovered Cobus
dismounted in a hollow, and no oryx in view. He had
succeeded in riding the quarry to a stand, and I fiot
immediately appearing, he very injudiciously had at
once lost sight of the buck and left it. Having up-
braided Cobus in no measured terms for his stupidity,
I sought to retrieve the fortunes of the day by riding in
the direction in which he had left the oryx. The ground
here was uneven, and interspersed with low hillocks.
We extended our front, and rode on up wind, and, hav-
ing crossed two or three rid es I discovered a troop of
bucks a long way ahe made for these, they
turned out to be ha this moment I per-
ceived three magnifice distance to my left.
On observing us, the the ridge toward a
fourth oryx, which to be "embossed
with foam a w to be the an-
telope s god her. Our
eir wind, but
after a chase
bullet
when
aa fine
36 which
en obtain
from the






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


vultures, we covered her with my after-rider's saddle-
cloth, which consisted of a large blanket: the head, on
which I placed great value, we cut off and bore along
with us.
On my .way home-I came across Paterson's after-
rider, "jaging" a troop of seven gemsbok, but fearfully
to leeward, his illustrious master being nowhere in sight.
An hour after I reached the camp Paterson came in,
in a towering rage, having been unlucky in both his
chases. I now dispatched one of my wagons to bring
home my oryx. It returned about twelve o'clock that
night, carrying the skin of my gerisbok and also a mag-
nificent old blue wildebeest (the brindled gnoo), which
the Hottentots had obtained in an extraordinary man-
ner He was found with one ol his fore legs caught
over his horn, so that he could not run, and they ham-
strung him and cut his throat. He had probably man-
nged to get himself into this awkward attitude while
fightingg with some of s fellows. The vultures had
consumed all the fles msbok, and likewise
torn my blanket wit covered her.
On the following eds being very much
done up, Paterson e neighboring Boers
to endeavor to b rses. I bought
S one clipper of called him
Grouse," and and
with these, on
campaign a
not bein,
on thi
noble ge
fine bull
rare in th
after whb






OSTRICH EGGS.


to take leave of me and' start for Cqlesberg, his leave
of absence having expired. One of his horses being
foot-sore, I purchased him, in the hope of his soon re-
covering, which after'a few days' rest he did: I called
him Paterson," after his old master. My stud now
consisted of eight horses; but three of them were miss-
ing, and I dispatched Jacob in quest of them, who re-
turned on the third day bringing them with him, hay-
ing-followed the spoor upward of fifty miles.
In the evening two of the Hottentots walked in to
camp, bending under a burden of ostrich eggs, having
discovered a nest containing five-and-thirty. Their
manner of carrying them amused me. Having divest-
ed themselves of their leather "crackers," which in co-
lonial phrase means trowsers, they had secured the an-
kles with rheimpys, and, having thus co-verted them
into bags, they had crammed them with as #nany ostrich
eggs as they w tain. They left abc f the
number b aled in the sand, fo i ey
rin g morning. VI a
n with sever aies of ostriches,
detained a singular propensity pe-
culiafR sebirds. If a person discovers the nest
and does not at once remove the eggs, on returning he
will most probably find. them all smashed. This the
old birds almost invariably do, even when the intruder
has not handledthe eggs or so much as ridden within
five yards of them. The nest is merely a hollow scoop.
ed in the sandy soil, generally among heath or other low
bushes; its diameter is about seven feet; it is believed
that two hens often lay inne nest. The hatching of
the eggs is not left, as is generally believed, to'he heat*
of the sun, but, on the contrary, the cock relieves the
hen in the incubation. These eggs form a consider-
E2






ADVENTURES IN SOUTH AFRICA.


able item in the Bushman's cuisine, and the shells are
converted into water-flasks, cups, and dishes. I have
often seen Bushgirls and Bakalahari women, who be-
long to the wandering Bechuana tribes of the Kalahari
desert, come down to the fountains from their remote
habitations, sometimes situated at an amazing distance,
each carrying on her back a kaross or a net-work con-
taining from twelve to fifteen ostrich egg-shells, which
had been emptied by a small apePture at one end: these
they fill with water, and cork up the hole with grass.
A favorite method adopted by the wild Bushman for
approaching the ostrich and other varieties of game is
to clothe himself in the skin of one of these birds, in
which, taking care of the wind, he stalks about the
plain, cunningly imitating the gait and motions of the
ostrich until w 'chin range, w'vei, with a well-directed
poisoned arrovw from his tiny bow, 'e can generally seal
Sthe fate r of the ordinary varic l.ame. These
insi king arrows are abo t six inch-
es they consist of a s 'th a
sharp bone thoroughly poison
tion, of which the principal ingre
sometimes frdm a succulent herb, having -es,
yielding a poisonous milky juice, and sometimes from
the jaws of snakes. The bow barely exceeds three feet
in length; its string is of twisted sinews. When a
Bushman finds an-ostrich's nest, he ensconces himself
in it, and there awaits the return of the old birds, by
which means he generally secures the pair. It is by
means of these little arrows that the majority of the
fine plumes are obtained which grace the heads of the
fair throughout the civilized world.
It was now the height of summer, and every day
the heat of the sun was terrific, but there was gen.




University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs