Lake Victoria, Lake Tanganyika, Africa

Lake Victoria and Lake Tanganyika are part of a series of lakes (The African Great Lakes) that constitute part of the Rift Valley lakes and the East African Rift. Lake Victoria is the third-largest fresh water lake in the world by area, and Lake Tanganyika is the world’s second-largest freshwater lake by volume and depth. British explorers Richard Burton and John Speke were the first Europeans to discover the lakes during the quest for the source of the Nile in 1858.

Coordinates

Latitude: -0.997874361342
Longitude: 32.702637612820

Timeline of Events Associated with Lake Victoria, Lake Tanganyika, Africa

Date Event Manage
1856

Livingstone visits Victoria Falls

David Livingstone visited Victoria Falls in 1856.

1857 to 1859

Burton/Speke expedition to Tanganyika

Photo of Richard Burton1857-59 were the inclusive years of the Richard Burton/John Hanning Speke expedition to Lake Tanganyika. Richard Burton, accompanied by John Hanning Speke, commanded this first British expedition into the lake region of East Africa. Both men were Indian Army officers. During their return from Lake Tanganyika, Speke made an independent journey north to the shores of Lake Victoria and became convinced that it was the source of the White Nile. The two men fell out over the issue, which set off an expanding geographical controversy. Image: Photograph of Richard Burton (author unknown). This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired. Note that the exact month of the beginning and end of this expedition is difficult to determine.

Articles

Dane Kennedy, "The Search for the Nile"

1860 to 186

Speke/Grant expedition to Lake Victoria

Engraving of Speke1860-63 are the inclusive years for the John Hanning Speke/James Grant expedition to Lake Victoria. Speke led this follow-up to his expedition to Lake Tanganyika; this expedition was meant to confirm his conviction that the Nile originated in Lake Victoria. James Grant, a fellow Indian Army officer, accompanied him. Upon his return, Speke was initially lauded as the man who had finally solved the mystery of the Nile, but gaps and inconsistencies in his evidence open the door to doubters who insisted that the prize remained unclaimed. Image: Engraving of John Hanning Speke from H. B. Scammel, Stanley and the White Heroes in Africa (1890). This image is in the public domain in the United States as its copyright has expired. Note that the exact month of the beginning and end of this expedition is difficult to determine.

Articles

Dane Kennedy, "The Search for the Nile"

1874 to 1877

Stanley expedition to Africa

Photo of Stanley1874-77 are the inclusive dates of Henry Morton Stanley's transcontinental expedition. This remarkable expedition resolved the major questions surrounding the source of the Nile. Stanley circumnavigated Lake Victoria, confirming John Hanning Speke’s claim that the Nile exited from its northern shore. He then circumnavigated Lake Tanganyika, disproving speculation that it provided an alternative tributary to the Nile. Finally, he followed the course of the Lualaba river, demonstrating that it flowed into the Congo, which he took to its outlet in the Atlantic. Image: Photograph of Sir Henry Morton Stanley from The Autobiography of Sir Henry Morton Stanley (1890). This image is in the public domain in the United States as its copyright has expired. Note that the exact month of the beginning and end of this expedition is difficult to determine.

Articles

Dane Kennedy, "The Search for the Nile"