"My yearly income from the Congo is millions of guineas" reads the caption of a caricature of Leopold II with his private earnings from the Congo Free State
(Source: King Leopold's Soliloquy: A Defense of His Congo Rule By Mark Twain, Boston: The P. R. Warren Co., 1905)
In most part of the Belgian Congo prisoners are employed in important work such as road-making for example. These usually work in batches, each member of which is chained by the neck to his neighbour. Lusambo was established in February 1890 as a fortified camp on the Sankuru River, from which place the Congo Free State could conduct exploration of katanga and military operations against the Arabs in the Lomami-Lualaba area. In 1910 it was the headquarters of the Kasai province and a growing commercial post. The Roman Scheut Fathers, the American Presbyterian church and the Methodist Episcopal had important Missions nearby Lusambo.
The Kitchen or cook-house were situated outside of the house. Cook or servant were exclusively a man's work. Among the first tasks upon their arrival in the Belgian Congo finding a cook and servants were a priority.
Now he also had a personal servant boy named Kalulu who was always at his side. Unfortunately, whether or not Mr. Stanley showed the same "love" towards this orphaned child as he did to his other loyal subjects will never be known to us from the perspective of Kalulu himself.
If there were not buyers, there would not be evil sellers, nor would thieves steal in order to sell...We give them the opportunity to deceive themselves, to rob each other, and to enslave and to sell...We were the inventors of such an evil trade, never before used or heard of among humans.
...if their material interest were removed, they would not go there.
Wilhelm Schmidt (1868−1954) of Austria was one of the forerunners of this partnership between the missionary community and experts in the scientific field of historical ethnography. He believed that by studying the religion, heritage, and culture of the people the Europeans encountered around the world, he could find connections in biblical history and identify them according to the Judeo-Christian tradition.
Portrait of Father Wilhelm Schmidt, 1928
(World Culture Museum)
Students and fellow colleagues under his instruction amassed their own collection of artifacts towards what they would call a "Universal History of Mankind". Some of it was - no doubt - confiscated from the "primitive" owners as symbols of their "idolatry" by these people who considered their own to be superior. Even missionaries who were not guided by imperial impulses kept their own "souvenirs" for their friends in Europe and just for the sake of doing so.
...it would have given the impression that we were for the Bordelaises. Many French nonetheless - at least seven - married princesses Béhanzin. Nobody can deny this true relationship between my family and France.
Appropriation, mastery, and self-reassurement of the claimed superior European culture
…[the Spaniards] grew more conceited every day and after awhile refused to walk any distance…[They] rode the backs of Indians if they were in a hurry or were carried on hammocks by Indians running in relays.
Europeans travel in two ways, either by sea in a canoe, or by land in a hammock. Canoes are of different sizes, and paddled by from three to twenty-one canoe-men: the smaller-sized are used for fishing and other purposes by the Blacks; the Whites commonly use those worked by from seven to fifteen paddles.
A hammock is made of cotton, something like those used onboard ship, but larger and neater; generally brought from Brazil by the Portuguese...
To go a distance of twenty-five or thirty miles, it is usual to have six or eight bearers for each hammock; who relieve each other without stopping...Well supplied with rum, they will travel at the rate of five miles an hour...
[Footnote: Two or three Europeans travelling in this way, with the flag of their country carried before them, attended by a number of stout black men, almost in a state of nature, singing and running, make a most whimsical procession!]
My privileges had been too glaring.
"I wipe out rebellious tribes with streams of blood and streams of money. Only following this cleansing can something new emerge."
As many as 3,000 Herero skulls were sent to Berlin for German scientists to examine for signs that they were of racially inferior peoples.
"He makes no requests according to truth and justice, and asks no permission of a chief. He introduces laws into the land, laws which are entirely impossible, untenable, unbelievable, unbearable, unmerciful and unfeeling. He punishes our people in Windhoek and has already beaten people to death for debt. It is not just and right to beat people to death for that. He stretches people on their backs and flogs them in a shameful and cruel manner, be they male or female. He thinks we are stupid and unintelligent people, but we have never yet punished people in the cruel and improper way that he does. No-one can survive such a punishment."
If you intend to have me now killed because of my love of independence, this is not shame or harm. If I have to die, I shall die as an honest man defending my property and my rights.
What can be wrong with a man who refuses to be inferior to someone else? Why should I be condemned to death for things which are natural?
All the things that you have said so far are constructs for your own profit. You argue the way you do to appear to the world as a person who loves truth and rightful doings...Since you have the guns, you force the right on your side. I fully agree with you in one thing: in comparison with you, we are nothing here...I have told you that I am fully in favor of peace and that I shall never be the one breaking such peace. But you say you intend to attack me. The responsibility for the innocent blood of my men and yours therefore cannot be mine since I am not the instigator of another war."
Scientific Researcher, Independent Historian, and Co-Founder of Black Research Central
In-Depth Info on History and Science from another perspective.