I was a child in Kenya when the country gained independence, so was fascinated to read this very personal account by Anthea Ramsay. Drawing from her grandparents’ diaries and photographs, as well as her own memories as a child, this sometimes harrowing book describes what it was like to live in East Africa for the first white settlers. We then follow the adventures of Anthea’s family right through to the present day.
Taking real dangers in their stride, from wild animals to lawless Mau Mau rebels, this family lived through an era that could easily be forgotten. There was the constant threat of malaria or the dreaded black water fever, with only the most basic medical care. It is recalled as a happy time, however, with amazing extremes of wealth and poverty.
The Forgotten Pioneer is a very readable book and shines a light on a period of history which is often overlooked. Thanks to Anthea Ramsay at least the men and women who helped to make Kenya what it is today will no longer be forgotten.