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Photographs of Mashonaland and Matabeleland

Reference Code: GBR/0115/RCS/Y3052B

Scope and Contents

An album containing mounted prints measuring approximately 240 x 180 mm, with captions beneath the prints written in a fine copperplate hand. The photographs show scenes taken between June and September 1890 during the Pioneer trek in what was later to be Southern Rhodesia (currently Zimbabwe). On July 9 1891, soon after his return to England, Surridge delivered a lecture to the Royal Colonial Institute, entitled 'Matabeleland and Mashonaland'. This talk was illustrated with lantern slides of which these prints are presumably the originals.

The captions have been used as titles and may contain offensive, inappropriate or outdated terms. They have been retained to reflect the context of their creation.

The ordering of the prints in the album bears little relation to the chronology of the trek itself and possibly reflects the order in which the lantern slides accompanying Surridge's lecture were shown. A more correct order would be (showing print number, then area, then approximate date):

14, 17, 18 Umzingwane River July 15
11, 12 Banyailand July
15, 16, 20 Nuanetsie River July 28
10, 13, 21 Lundi River August 2
19 Savana Buli Rock August 2
2, 3, 6 Tokwe and Tokwani Rivers Early August
8, 9 Somoto's Kraal August 20
1, 4, 5, 7 Unspecific or unidentified locations ?


  • Creation: 1890-06 - 1890-09


Conditions Governing Access

Unless restrictions apply, the collection is open for consultation by researchers using the Manuscripts Reading Room at Cambridge University Library. For further details on conditions governing access please contact Information about opening hours and obtaining a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket is available from the Library's website (

Biographical / Historical

Reverend Frank Harold Surridge had originally gone to South Africa to take up a position as Chaplain to the Archbishop of Cape Town but instead accepted the post of Church of England Chaplain to the Pioneer Column. Surridge did not settle in Mashonaland and later accepted a chaplaincy in India. He died in Chelmsford, England, in May 1947.


1 album(s) (21 images in 1 album)

Language of Materials


Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Fair condition, with some fading at the edges.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The album was presented to the Royal Colonial Institute in June 1891.

Existence and Location of Copies

This collection is available on microfiche: Africa, fiche number 140.

Related Materials

For an historical note on the occupation of Mashonaland see the introduction to Y3052A (where a photograph of Surridge among a group of other Pioneer Officers can be found at plate 2).


The source of the information provided in the album description is: Johnson, Frank William Frederick (1940), 'Great days: the autobiography of an empire pioneer', London: G Bell.

The text for the lecture is printed in: Royal Colonial Institute (1891), 'Matabeleland and Mashonaland', 'Proceedings of the Royal Colonial Institute', vol. XXII, pp.305-331, London: Royal Colonial Institute.


This collection level description was entered by SG using information from the original typescript catalogue.


Surridge, Frank Harold, d. 1947.

2004-01-05 15:39:51+00:00
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
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Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom