In the midst of the universal sorrow caused by the intelligence that Dr. Livingstone had lost his life at the furthest point to which he had penetrated in his search for the true sources of the Nile, a faint hope was indulged that some of his journals might survive the disaster: this hope, I rejoice to say, has been realized beyond the most sanguine expectations.
It is due, in the first place, to his native attendants, whose faithfulness has placed his last writings at our disposal, and also to the reader, before be launches forth upon a series of travels and scientific geographical records of the most extraordinary character, to say that in the following narrative of seven years' continuous work and new discovery no break whatever occurs.
We have not to deplore the loss, by accident or carelessness, of a single entry, from the time of Livingstone's departure from Zanzibar in the beginning of 1866 to the day when his note-book dropped from his hand in the village of Hala at the end of April, 1878.
I trust it will not be uninteresting if I preface the history with a few words on the nature of these journals and writings as they have come to band from Central Africa.
It will be remembered that when Mr. Stanley returned to England in 1872, Dr. Livingstone entrusted to his care a very large Letts' diary, sealed up and consigned to the safe keeping of his daughter. Miss Agnes Livingstone.