Lantern slides from the Smithsonian-Roosevelt African Expedition, circa 1909-1910, 1989

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The collection consists of 8 hand colored glass lantern slides from the Smithsonian-Roosevelt African Expedition. The slides depict various scenes and events related to the expedition including the collection of zebra, giraffe, gemsbok specimens in the field; the expedition party's tent encampment; porters carrying luggage; and a portrait of a Maasai man. It is unclear who took the photographs. The official photographer for the expedition was Roosevelt's son Kermit Roosevelt, although other members of the party also took a number of photographs, especially Edmund Heller. Heller was in charge of preparing large game animals in the field for museum purposes. Edgar Alexander Mearns served as the expedition's head naturalist and bird-collector and John Alden Loring was responsible for collecting and preparing small animals. The expedition party left New York on March 23, 1909 and sailed for British East Africa, arriving on April 21. From there, they traveled by the Uganda Railway to Kapiti Plains where their safari awaited them. The party followed a route that took them to Nairobi, the vicinity of Mt. Kenja (Kenya), the Loita Plains, Lake Victoria, Lake Albert and up the Nile to Khartoum. The expedition broke up there on March 14, 1910.

Date Range


Access Information

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  • Equidae
  • Giraffidae
  • Oryx gazella
  • Animalia
  • Zebras
  • Giraffe
  • Gemsbok


  • Khartoum
  • Nairobi
  • Loita Plains
  • Africa
  • Ilkaputiei
  • Victoria, Lake
  • Kirinyaga
  • Albert, Lake
  • British East Africa
  • Mount Kenya


Collection record

Accession #

SIA Acc. 06-093


8 lantern slides

Physical Location

Smithsonian Institution Archives