From the records of the Colonial Office and from the dead man's diary we learn that a certain young English nobleman, whom we shall call John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, was commissioned to make a peculiarly delicate investigation of conditions in a British West Coast African Colony from whose simple native inhabitants another European power was known to be recruiting soldiers for its native army, which it used solely for the forcible collection of rubber and ivory from the savage tribes along the Congo and the Aruwimi
. The natives of the British Colony complained that many of their young men were enticed away through the medium of fair and glowing promises, but that few if any ever returned to their families.
"I've seen them buryin' a chief up the Aruwimi
River, and they ate a hippo that must have weighed as much as a tribe.
Near the confluence of the Aruwimi
and the Congo rivers, Stanley records, his party was attacked by a veritable armada of fifty-four "gigantic" war canoes led by a "monster canoe" and all manned by "prime young warriors, their heads gay with feathers of the parrot crimson and grey," some ten of whom were "dancing up and down from stem to stern ...
Stanley navigated the Aruwimi
river, traversed the unexplored Ituri forest, and eventually brought Emin Pasha back, but not before half of his expedition bad perished.