SPEKE, John Hanning (1827-1864). Autograph letter signed to Rigby, Mininga [Congo], 28th March [n.y.], 4 pages, 8vo (laid down at central fold with traces of glue and obscuring outer margins, small area of light browning).
A revealing letter, apparently written in 1860, during Speke's expedition to determine the source of the Nile, concerning the problems of recruiting porters. Speke writes to Colonel Christopher Rigby, the consul at Zanzibar, when he reaches Mininga, 'we... wish we could make more progress'. There is mention of Grant, Burton and Baron van der Decken, with a discussion of the problems of employing Beloochs through the Sultan and Colonel Hamerton's endeavours to secure their wages, 'the Belooches are of course all mercenary'. The letter includes a snipe at Burton who offered the beloochs higher wages, 'this is how he got the information and... what blackguard use he has turned it to...'.
David LIVINGSTONE (1813-1873). Autograph letter signed to 'W', Newstead Abbey, Mansfield, 18th February 1865, concerning Macmillan and contributing to school funds, 3 pages, 8vo (final page laid down). Following his return to England from Lake Nyasa in July 1864, Livingstone went to stay with his old friend Mr Webb at Newstead Abbey in Nottinghamshire in September. He remained there for 8 months, writing The Zambesi and its Tributaries before resuming his exploration of the Nile Basin in August 1865.
Both in an AUTOGRAPH ALBUM containing the cut signatures of Charles Montagu DOUGHTY, James Augustus GRANT and Sir Roderick MURCHISON, the album comprising a collection of cut and franking signatures and approximately 66 autograph letters or notes from prominent 19th-century figures including: Queen VICTORIA, WILLIAM III, WILLIAM IV, Lord Leigh, Samuel 1st Viscount HOOD (1724-1816) (autograph letter signed to Messrs Baker, Greenwich, 14th March 1808, 1 page, 8vo, writing to his tailors about breeches), Thomas MOORE, Sir Anthony Hope Hawkins, and Sir Kenneth GRAHAME (autograph letter signed, Fowey, Cornwall, 30 July [n.y.] to 'Edith', 1 page, 8vo). Red morocco gilt (lacking spine).