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Wednesday, 25 September, 2002, 11:50 GMT 12:50 UK
Explorer's memorabilia taken 'home'
Map of the Congo auctioned at Christies
The Congo map went under the hammer for 78,000
A number of personal items owned by the famous African explorer Henry Morton Stanley are to go on public display in Denbighshire after an auction in London.

The explorer, immortalised by his famous words "Dr Livingstone I presume" in the midst of the jungle was born in Denbigh 161 years ago.


We are truly excited that some of HM Stanley's memorabilia is coming to Denbighshire

Councillor Gwyneth Kensler

At the sale at Christies auctioneers in London on Tuesday, Denbighshire council successfully bid for five out of 11 items belonging to the adventurer and MP.

They included glass plate negatives of the explorer (2,000), a Welsh Bible given as a wedding present to Stanley and his wife (1,200), and a model of his hand (700).

However, a water-stained map of the Congo River, which fetched nearly 78,000 at the sale, went to an unknown buyer.

The council was able to bid for the artefacts with the aid of grant funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The local authority now plans to put the items it bought on permanent display as a tribute to one of Denbigh's most famous sons.

World history

Councillor Gwyneth Kensler, cabinet lead member for promoting Denbighshire, has been heading the campaign to mount an exhibition in honour of Stanley.

"We are truly excited that some of HM Stanley's memorabilia is coming to Denbighshire," she said.

"The interest shown in this auction shows the importance of Stanley in world history.

Ms Kensler said the council had received tremendous support and guidance from the Heritage Lottery Fund which had enabled them to take part in the auction.

"We will now be looking at exhibiting the items for members of the public to view and also commemorating the centenary of his death in 2004."

Explorer, Henry Morton Stanley
Henry Morton Stanley was born in Denbigh

HM Stanley's association with Denbighshire has been well documented.

Born John Rowlands in a cottage outside Denbigh Castle, he was brought up in a workhouse in St Asaph from the age of six.

He left the area in 1859 to become a cabin-boy on a ship bound for New Orleans.

It was there he was befriended by American Henry Hope Stanley, from whom he adopted his name.

In 1867, he became a journalist and was asked by his editor to locate the missing explorer Dr David Livingstone.

He eventually found him four years later on the edge of Lake Tanganyika, and greeted, him with his now famous line - "Dr Livingstone I presume?"


More news from north east Wales
See also:

13 Aug 02 | England
09 May 02 | Entertainment
26 Nov 01 | Entertainment
06 Sep 99 | Science/Nature
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