David Livingstone was born in Blantyre, Scotland 200 years ago. He remains the most celebrated of all Victorian explorers, equally known for his humanity and humanitarian work as for his feats of exceptional exploration. All the countries that he explored and traversed are celebrating this year and in the first of three articles, we look at Zambia.

Celebrating David Livingstone in Zambia;

His motivation as an explorer was the abolition of the African slave trade and important to achieving this aim was to navigate the Zambezi river and discover the source of the Nile making these arteries a Christian highway into the interior of Africa. Part of his success as an explorer lay in the fact that he travelled comparatively lightly with only a small retinue of porters and servants and with an absence of soldiers or armed guards. He was consequently not seen as a threat by most chiefs and villages he passed through nor mistaken as a slave trader.

Over several expeditions and journeys, he explored and mapped for western civilisation large regions which had previously been blank. As well as the Victoria Falls,the upper Zambezi river and some of the Congo river basin, he explored lakes Banweulu, Malawi and Ngami and some of lakes Mweru and Tanganyika.

David Livingstone died in Ilala southeast of Lake Bangweulu in present day Zambia on 1 May 1873 from malaria . His heart was buried there under a mpundu tree by his loyal servants before they departed for the coast carrying his body. The Livingstone Memorial was built in 1902 and this brick and plaster obelisk topped by a bronze cross can be visited. The visit can be incorporated with a safari to the nearby Kasanka National Park. His body lay in repose before burial in Westminster Abbey, at 1 Savile Row, then the headquarters of the Royal Geographical Society and now the home of Gieves and Hawkes which can also be visited for all your tailoring needs!

David Livingstone viewed the Victoria Falls (which he named) from what is now Livingstone Island ( a great picnic and lunching spot!) near the Zambian town of Livingstone. It is this town which is most closely associated with the celebrations and we give below a calendar of events. This is not an exhaustive list and there are many more sporting events which are planned during the course of the year which our consultants will be happy to indicate to you:

19-21 April 2013
International Academic Conference in Livingstone Zambia – Imperial Obsessions David Livingstone, Africa and world history: a life and legacy reconsidered. Jointly hosted jointly by The London School of Economics, UK; The Livingstone Museum, Zambia and The David Livingstone Bicentenary, Livingstone

1 May 2013
Livingstone Memorial Day
David Livingstone died in Zambia on 1 May 1873, after spending half his life exploring the African continent.

19-21 April 2013
International Academic Conference in Livingstone Zambia – Imperial Obsessions David Livingstone, Africa and world history: a life and legacy reconsidered. Jointly hosted jointly by The London School of Economics, UK; The Livingstone Museum, Zambia and The David Livingstone Bicentenary, Livingstone

1 May 2013
Livingstone Memorial Day
David Livingstone died in Zambia on 1 May 1873, after spending half his life exploring the African continent.
4 May 2013
David Livingstone Bicentenary Golf Tournament.

7-9 June 2013
International Cultural Festival and Carnival
Neighbouring countries through which Livingstone travelled will be invited to participate in this fun, vibrant, colourful international part of the bicentenary celebrations. Street carnival, national stands, food and lots more.

16 November 2013
Grand Finale
River events, and memorial on Livingstone Island. This is the date that Dr Livingstone first viewed the Falls, from Livingstone Island.

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