David Livingstone – explorer and missionary
David Livingstone was a famous explorer and missionary. From the age of ten to twenty-four he worked in a cotton factory. He studied at evening classes and eventually he qualified as a doctor. In 1840 he went to Africa as a missionary. He ‘discovered’ most of the Zambesi River and in 1866 he started looking for the source of the River Nile.
David Livingstone was born on March 19, 1813, in Blantyre. The Livingstones were poor, so the 10-year-old boy had to work in the textile mills 14 hours a day, studying at night and on weekends.
In 1836 he entered the University of Glasgow to study medicine and theology.
In 1840 he received his medical degree and was accepted by the London Missionary Society. At the end of the same year he sailed to Africa and arrived in Cape Town on March 14, 1841.
In 1845 he married Mary Moffat and settled farther north at Kolobeng. They had four children.
In 1855 the Royal Geographical Society had awarded him the Gold Medal.
In November 1857 his first book, the tremendously successful Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa, was published.
In 1865 Livingstone published his second successful book, Narrative of an Expedition to the Zambesi and Its Tributaries, and the Royal Geographical Society equipped him for another expedition to explore the watersheds of Africa. The next fifteen years Livingston explored inland areas of Southern and Central Africa.
Livingstone died on May 1, 1873 in Zambia. His men carried the body to England. On April 18, 1874, Livingstone was buried in great honor in London’s Westminster Abbey.
Livingstone inspired many new enterprises such as the Makololo, Ndebele, and Tanganyika missions of his own society, the Universities’ Mission to Central Africa, and the Livingstonia Mission of the Church of Scotland.
Livingstone devoted most of his life to Africa. He was the first who defensed the black population of Africa at such a high level.
In 1997 the film Forbidden Territory: Stanley’s Search for Livingstone was released.