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"THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS."

GERMANY'S ONE UNCONQUERED COLON!7.

The campaign against German East Africa by British and South .African forces has begun, and German terri--1 tory has been occupied, and we may I look for a speedy development of the situation there. Central Africa will have a big future m competent hands, as the following extract from an American journal will i show. It is of interest as showing how i the present campaign will affect the future of the dntei-ior of the Dark ConI tment. • _ While the war has Been waging even l m Africa the steam route across the j tropical part of the Continent has been I completed. It extends from the mouth |of the Congo, on the Atlantic, to Daressalam, the captial of German East Africa, on the Indian Ocean. It is about 2800 miles long, some 1300 miles of it being railroad, and the re- . mamder is Congo river and lake trans- ! portation by steamboat. The link that completed the line is' a railroad 180 miles long, from the upper Congo at Kabalo to Albertville on the west coast of Lake Tanganyika, , along the valley of the Lukuga river. This railroad was built by the Belgian colony of the Congo, formerly the Congo Free State. The men who performed . the-manual labor were black Congoese, trained to work hard for wages, and the road was well built- under peaceful conditions, though all the British, French and German colonies in the hot parts of Africa are aflame with war Africa now presents the sad spectacle of black troops, led by-white officers, killing one another, though the poor fellows have not the slightest jdea what all the trouble is about. But the Belgians have suffered enough at home and peap© has reigned in the Belgian Congo. In many ways a wonderful transformation has come in Africa. Years ago when the Belgians built their first railroad over ,300 miles- long and a part ot this transcontinental system around the rapids of the lower' Congo, they thought the natives would be worthless for the hard work, and so they imported many hundreds of" Chinese coolies, who died like flies in the pestilential climate. The railroad was finally completed, but it was a tragedy from beginning to end, though the dear-bought result became the greatest money-maker among tropical railways. ■Then the Belgian® put thousands of the Congo youth into training schools and finally discovered that they could make of them good laborers, artisans and mechanics. To-day they are doing all the hard work and' are skilled also in many trades. The black man is proving equal to the need and is profiting by it. . GERMANS DID THEIR PART. The war had been in progress nearly a year before this last Congo link in the railroad system, was completed Ihe Germans, However, finished their part of the great undertaking months before they invaded Belgium. It is a nne built railroad extending 800 miles from Daressalam to the port of Ujiji on Lake Tanganyika. The British .have since bombarded Daressalam, and there is little left xJ? the nne young city on the sea; but time will finally heal all the material wounds of the great struggle. Ten thousand blacks of East Africa had all the work of grading the German roadbed, laying- the ties and spiking the rails to them. The Germans have the reputation in Africa of making a well-finished job of everything they undertake, and this 800 miles of track is one of the costliest and best made railroads in Africa. It will take the traveller from the Indian Ocean to famous Ujiji in Central Africa in about two days. Speke, Stanley and*the other pioneer explorers were never less than eight months on the way. The Germans decided that they would build three fine steamships to carry freight and passengers across Lake Tanganyika between the port or Ujiji and Albertville. This ferriage would complete the transcontinental highway as soon as the Belgians should finish their line to Albertville. Two of the steamers were built at Papenburg on the Ems river in Germany, and their size and finish shows the enthusiasm with which Germany participated in the enterprise. One of them, the Goetzen, was taken'piece-meal to Africa, carried on the railroad to Tanganyika, and so fine a vessel was never launched before in Central Africa's waters. -She its 219 feet long, has a steel hull, cabins, dining and smoking rooms both for first and second class passengers and large freight capacity. But the Goetzen is idle at her dock. The port through which she entered Africa is in ashes. All enterprise in tropical Africa is dead; and the first transcontinental'steam route across the dark continent cannot begin its service until better times come.

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/HNS19160222.2.10

Bibliographic details

"THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS.", Hawera & Normanby Star, Volume LXXI, Issue LXXI, 22 February 1916

Word Count
792

"THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS." Hawera & Normanby Star, Volume LXXI, Issue LXXI, 22 February 1916

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