Henry Morton Stanley

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Sir Henry Morton Stanley (28 January 184110 May 1904), a Welsh-born reporter for the New York Herald, went to Africa in search of missionary and explorer David Livingstone. He was later a British Member of Parliament.


  • Dr. Livingstone, I presume?
    • Spoken on 10 November 1871 in Ujiji near Lake Tanganyika in present-day Tanzania.
    • There were no other white men known to be in the vicinity. As the two had not been formally introduced, it was a proper way to address Livingstone without committing a breach of etiquette.
  • Only by proving that we are superior to the savages, not only through our power to kill them but through our entire way of life, can we control them as they are now, in their present stage; it is necessary for their own well-being, even more than ours.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Stanley writes this on his first expidition commissioned by King Leopold II of Belgium after describing with horror the horrible scenes of atrocities and cannibalism that take place in Congo.
  • You can find it on almost any tree. As we made our way through the forest, it was literally raining rubber juice. Our clothes were full of it. The Congo has so many tributaries that a well-organized company can easily extract a few tons of rubber per year here. You only have to sail up such a river and the branches with rubber hang almost up to your ship.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094 Stanley Points out to King Leopold II Of Belgium that the Congo free State which was a loss-making endeavor at that time that rubber extraction has a possibility to make the colony profitable.
  • The barge was an invention of my own. It was 40 feet long, 6 feet beam, and 30 inches deep, of Spanish cedar 3/8 inches thick.
Trough the dark continent, Henry Morton Stanley, 1878 New York, Quoted from Robert G.Mc Gregor, Consul General of the USA in the Belgian Congo., Belgian Congo American Survey 1957-58, United States (1957).
  • I was received with an overwhelming display of military and civilian tributes, all the way to the royal palace where I was to stay, troops were lined up behind which enthusiastic people were chanting their viva, it seemed to me that a major change had come in the Belgian public opinion on the importance of the Congo, when I first went there, the Belgian newspapers spouted nothing but criticism, they were completely dumbfounded, the king was recognized as the great benefactor of the nation.
Leopold II, Het hele Verhaal, Johan Op De Beeck Horizon, 2020 ISBN 9789463962094, Stanley returns from his first trans-Africa exploration in 1877.

Autobiography of Sir Henry Morton Stanley (1909)[edit]

Ed. Lady Dorothy Stanley, Houghton Mifflin, 1909
  • As seen in my loneliness, there was this difference between the Bible and the newspapers. The one reminded one that, apart from God, my life was but a bubble of air, and it bade me remember my Creator; the other fostered arrogance and loneliness. (p. 254)
  • Religion acts as a moral gardener, to weed out, or suppress, evil tendencies, which, like weeds: grow.
  • Though many illusions are of a character we should gladly cherish, yet the sooner we lose some of them, the sooner we gain the power of seeing clearly into things. The one who possesses least has the best chance of becoming wise. The man who travels, and reflects, loses illusions faster than he who stays at home. (p. 523)
  • Socialism is a return to primitive conditions. (p. 530)


  • And this in turn makes it plain that the Right Man problem is a problem of highly dominant people. Dominance is a subject of enormous importance to biologists and zoologists because the percentage of dominant animals — or human beings — seems to be amazingly constant. Bernard Shaw once asked the explorer H. M. Stanley how many other men could take over leadership of the expedition if Stanley himself fell ill; Stanley replied promptly: "One in twenty." "Is that exact or approximate?" asked Shaw. "Exact." And biological studies have confirmed this as a fact. For some odd reason, precisely five per cent — one in twenty — of any animal group are dominant — have leadership qualities. During the Korean War, the Chinese made the interesting discovery that if they separated out the dominant five per cent of American prisoners of war, and kept them in separate compound, the remaining ninety-five per cent made no attempt to escape.

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