Page:Sawdust & Spangles.djvu/42

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22
SAWDUST AND SPANGLES

of rare birds or beasts. During nine months of every year they had a band of experienced white African hunters traveling from station to station, overseeing and directing the work of the natives, and capturing elephants, lions, leopards, tigers and such other beasts as they might be instructed to obtain. The company, usually composed of four or six, and never more than eight, was under the command of Charles Lohse, a veteran hunter and trapper, and started from Germany about the first of September and generally returned from Africa early in June. During the remaining three months of the year, the rainy season, the climate is so unhealthful that it is almost certain death for a white man to remain in Africa.

STRIKING INTO THE INTERIOR

Starting from Germany, the hunters used to take a complete outfit of clothing and firearms, gifts for the chiefs, and from seven to twelve thousand dollars in drafts and letters of credit. They would go to Trieste, thence to Corfu, in Greece, thence to Alexandria, and by rail to Suez. There they would exchange their money for Austrian silver dollars, the only coin known to the Arabs and sheiks of Africa. A Bank of England note was valueless to