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Black Livingstone
Black Livingstone

Black Livingstone

A True Tale of Adventure in the Nineteenth-Century Congo

Pagan Kennedy Project


144 Pages, 5 x 8

Formats: Trade Paper, Mobipocket, EPUB, PDF

Trade Paper, $15.00 (US $15.00) (CA $15.00)

Publication Date: September 2013

ISBN 9780988225268

Rights: WOR

Santa Fe Writer's Project (Sep 2013)


eBook Editions Available

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Price: $15.00


A largely untold story of an extraordinary historical figure, this biography sheds light on the life of William Sheppard, a 19th-century African American who, for more than 20 years, defied segregation and operated a missionary run by black Americans in the Belgian Congo. This work shows how Sheppard returned to United States periodically, and traveled the country telling tales of his adventures to packed auditoriums. An anthropologist, photographer, big-game hunter, and art collector, the man billed as the “Black Livingstone” helped expose the atrocities that occurred under the reign of King Leopold, and this stirring work tells how he eventually helped to break Belgium’s hold on the Congo.


“Kennedy is an engaging writer and ably captures the undercurrent of horror found everywhere in the late 19th-century Congo while honoring Sheppard's accomplishments, heroism and character.” Publishers Weekly “Novelist Kennedy (The Exes) recaptures the incredible life and adventures of William Henry Sheppard... Kennedy takes on racism and imperialism in this first book-length exploration of Sheppard and his life.” Library Journal“A deeply felt and moving book.” The New York Times, January 8, 2002

Author Biography

Pagan Kennedy is a writer and a pioneer of the 1990s zine movement. She is the author of 10 books, is a regular contributor to the Boston Globe, and has published articles in dozens of magazines and newspapers, including Boston Magazine and the New York Times. She has served as a visiting professor of creative writing at Dartmouth College and has taught writing at Boston College and Johns Hopkins University. She is currently the design columnist for the New York Times Magazine. She lives in Boston.