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WARD, Herbert.

My Life with Stanley’s Rear Guard.

Published: London: Chatto & Windus, 1891

Stock code: 91110

Price: £500

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This item is on show at 43 Dover Street (map)

First edition of this firsthand account of the Emin Pasha Expedition rearguard. Ward was recruited by Stanley in 1884 and was a Congo adventurer who had been employed by both the Free State and the Sanford Exploring Expedition. The rearguard was left at Yambuya in 1887 to await supplies and reinforcements from Tippu Tib, but hunger, disease, and warfare forced the rear column to languish “for thirteen months, waiting in vain both for the promised supplies from Tippu Tib and for news of the advance guard”, neither of which materialised (ODNB). Ward’s account is understandably negative and he considered the rearguard an unmitigated failure.

Small octavo (170 x 113 mm). Original dark blue cloth, titles to spine and front board in brown, palm block to front board and publisher’s device to rear board, both in brown, grey and white floral endpapers. Lithographic folding map by F. S. Weller. Small bookseller’s ticket to rear pastedown. Spine darkened and gently cocked, extremities a touch rubbed, minor wear to spine ends and corners, endpapers slightly foxed, margins of text block lightly tanned with occasional soiling, a few corners turned. Otherwise a very good copy.

Bibliography: Howgego IV S60.

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