7 - 8 April 2004
FRY, W. Ellerton. Occupation of Mashonaland. London: Copyright and registered at Stationers' Hall, 1891
2° (455 x 290mm). 154 mounted album photos on 41 leaves each with letterpress caption, the front free endpaper stamped 'The British South Africa Company Management Services Limited.' (Occasional stainings.) Original green half morocco, rubbed, titled on upper cover (worn along the spine). One of just twelve albums printed according to a loosely inserted photocopy of an inscription in the album in the Bulawayo Public Library.
Looking for 'a few paying gold reefs' and with a concession granting him rights to minerals, Rhodes formed the British South Africa Company which sent its heavily guarded pioneer column north to exploit the land between the Limpopo and Zambezi rivers in 1890. The column, consisting of 192 prospective miners, with the hunter F.C. Selous as guide, and 500 troopers of the newly formed British South Africa Police Company, established a camp (Fort Salisbury) at the site of present day Harare. 'An album was produced of 154 of Ellerton Fry's original whole-plate photographs, which form a comprehensie record of the historic trek of the Pioneer column from Mafeking to Fort Salisbury in 1890.' (A.D. Bensusan, Silver Images, History of Photography in Africa, Cape Town, 1966, p.29) Provenance: William Jardine, Cape Town 1903 (armorial bookplate).
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