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The National Association of educational broadcasters presents America's African heritage recorded in Africa by Skip Westfall program the medicine gardens of Kew song too. Here is Kip Westfall program is coming to you again this week from the mission had to send two in the bosun come on our last recording we told a part of the story of the important contribution Father Cullen's is made in the development of the medicine obtained from the rubble to really fortunately father Carmine's is here today at the Botanical Gardens Research Center. I consider it a real honor to have the privilege to meet such a distinguished scientist Father Cullen's speaks to me and has asked Father houri to act as interpreter rather caroms What do you consider to be the most important use of the Rabo theory rooted in modern medicine for the government about these people who see it would not you could break in front of you in anything you've been
up to look and these are the things humans that can move a movement of communities know that move out of get rid of them better from both of them but then it is the mother of the mother because and for those who have been a vegan for them a few have followed them to the. But in the middle in the middle of our vote we have a break but they meant that of victory and on the book and on the cause of the fire. He's not claiming you can't know our doctrine and many think that he you know he thinks river gauges especially use the regulator for high blood pressure. Again remember the thesis here. Now in what way is the African Royal where we are superior to the real world
here certainly in which is running in your lap in Havana. Dance in the movie beat it down the road. Yet even in India the role of the little field the majority of acres have been pinned on the oval and the first supposes that rule only Duryea found here is richer in driveby than ever found in India. I say at this point perhaps we should explain Father Cullen's understands that he speaks the language fairly well. He was hesitant about attempting an interview in English at his suggestion. We will do the rest of this recording with Father our age who have been briefed concerning exams and other our A would you give us a brief description of how the round of your route is getting one of the perks of the co-operative here isn't to go out to the indigenous markets in the villages and buy their the house made by the natives.
How far do they go out. Quite some distance say about 300 miles from here. They cover a large area with us how many trucks have a co-operative have here information about 8 to 10 and what do they collect in addition to the route would be a route in addition to running your route and then collect also money or Camille be all sorts of vegetables and fruit. And so on. Yes. Then they also sell merchandise to the people in the villages do they and they fetch them the kitchen knives from their home in which they sell to the villages for instance furniture gardening to lose all kinds of cooking utensils perhaps pots and pans not afford them. Now you might say that these trucks of the co-operative are similar to the peddler's wagon that we used to see years ago throughout the countryside back in the States. Except that these
travelling margins in Africa by produce in addition to selling the merchandise. Now this project of AGR operatives is certainly a wonderful service to the people of this region isn't it. Well yes so they help people to reach me. Now it is the business of gathering there I will hear it continue throughout the year. No they got it principally during the dry season. Oh why oh why don't they gather it during the website when it seems that their own puro doesn't come things as much or is it people during the wet season when the plant is bedding and flowering than during the ride which is a recipe for a plan. Now is this the main area in Africa where the route of your route is to be found. If you did not mean an area where there would be a road used to be found in our principal area where did I look at you.
How to connect and how this story of the round world here really has been of especial interest to me. Sorry because of mine because one of my purposes and coming here for the Ford Foundation is to do a series of the radio programs on Africa's contribution to modern medicine. I'll be interested to know what other plants or trees grown in Africa are used in the making of medicines. Father comes to me that there are several plants here used again for heart disease for instance. I've been on the Evoque I also try to use this but yes. The folk have a higher profile through here. Also another kind of plant welcomed all hope for heart disease. Evidently in spite of the fact that synthetic medicines are widely used throughout the world there is still a great demand for medicines which are made from France and three. Well in fact the natives have been using these
plans on drugs here for hundreds of years already and now it would be a little this their medical knowledge is made available for instance to grade the mother from the Through the Night Fever which is doing every effort and a great research in this field and it is only in fairly recent years that modern medicine has realized the value of some of these plants which the Africans have used for a long time by us for instance viral it's only since 1950 that they were going to go into the 1950 that other colonies first sent the first man to reach of the country. Well I know Father Collins that and you didn't father Auret have important work which demands your attention and I don't want to impose on your good nature by taking too much of your time. It has been most kind of your father hour and by the columns to talk with me today
and I wish you continued success in your efforts to help relieve the suffering of mankind. Now that Father Collins has left we will use the few minutes remaining on this broadcast to describe our visit this afternoon to the beautiful botanical gardens of cosigned. First perhaps I should explain the loud noise you no doubt heard a few moments ago. Oh I had told the boy who brings me my meals that he should wait until 12:30. He evidently didn't understand my French and he burst into the room right in the midst of our interview. He did it very quietly however as though he had dumped a load of bricks on the floor. I'm sure that boy had no idea that he would slam that door so hard that it could be heard all the way across the Atlantic Ocean. My tour of the Botanical Gardens was a wonderful experience. Father Collins took about two hours to show me the trees the plants and the flowers which are his pride and joy. He's a gentle kindly person as you would expect
and very humble about the important contribution he has made to the people of the Congo on our tour he pointed out to me many plants and trees from which medicines are me. He showed me the tavern and the boat from which your medicine is made to treat diseases of the heart. He pointed out 22 species of the Stroh finest plant from the seeds of which manufactured the important drug cortisone used in the treatment of arthritis. He proudly displayed his collection of 200 different species of the owl OK from the leaves of this plant is obtained in medicine to cure digestive ailments. In addition to the many plans which are used in the making of medicines Father Collins has in his gardens trees and flowers from practically every tropical country in the world. I was particularly interested in the giant bamboo from Jever which grows an inch in a day and reaches a height of up to almost 100 feet. One of the interesting things about the Cassandra
Gardens is that they are almost self-supporting. Seventy men are employed here and they raise many products which are sold in the markets in this area. And even as far away as Leopold Dell among the produce which is delivered to the markets are bananas pineapples mango oranges and many other kinds of citrus fruits. There is also a set up at this place a horticultural school attended by 80 native students who are trained to be gardeners in the homes of Europeans and that hospitals and various institutions all over this part of Africa. They descend to botanical gardens have a most unusual history. They were begun shortly after the mission was founded 70 years ago. At that time the food of the natives consisted only of leaves of plants and trees and what meat they were able to obtain from hunting while Green moved with compassion for these under nourished people. The fathers began to import vegetables and fruits from other parts of the world and for many years they
conducted experiments on methods of acclimating them to this tropical climate. Now as a result of these experiments the African people throughout this whole area can raise in their gardens Potatoes Man young beans carrots practically everybody as well as all kinds of citrus fruits. And the Co-operative movement which was begun by Father Cali only a few years ago there is an amazing project for me. There were many women in this area who had to leave their home at daybreak one day every week and walk for three or four hours to the market carrying on their heads. What produce they had for sale. Then after the market was over they had another four hours to walk back to their homes in the bush. Now as Father houri explained a moment ago there are 10 crux of the Co-operative which go out to the villages with merchandise to sell and they return with the produce which has been delivered to them by the African people. You can easily imagine what a boon
this co-operative movement is to the people of the villages in this area. It's an experiment in practical Christianity of which the Cassandra mission has good reason to be proud. In addition to the world renowned botanical gardens the horticultural school and the hospital there is also a school here attended by over 2000 boys and girls. One of the most inspiring sites here at the Mission School is the theme of a boy is marching to their cries in public step arms swinging and heads held high landmarks through the coming of aroud not at this moment. My father I don't mean the words of one of their marching song. I teach YOUR has given me a present. What is it. It is our homework for tonight. Let's listen.
MARTIN sigh. I I I I and. J. I. This has been program 11 of America's African heritage. These
programs feature recordings made by world traveler skip Westfall on a recent trip to Africa. The series is made possible by a grant in aid to radio station w o I always state college from the educational television and radio centered production is under the direction of Norman B Cleary And this is regularly speaking for the National Association of educational broadcasters. This is the end of the Radio Network. I can think a few more hair raising predicaments to be and then to be suspended 60 feet above ground climbing a palm tree leaning back against a belt made of palm fronds and then suddenly to have a snake poke out a hit at you from a Questar of palm fruit.
The National Association of educational broadcasters presents America's African heritage recorded in Africa by Skip Westfall program 12 by river boat up the Congo. Here is get Westfall today's recording comes to you from aboard a river boat moving up the Congo River. I had a pleasant surprise on this trip. You may recall on our first program which was broadcast aboard the African patriot in New York Harbor at the first mate had warned me about the terrific heat in the Congo. It's terribly hot on the Congo River at this time of the year he said. I don't envy you that trip. You'd be much happier back in Iowa. Well as a result of that warning I've been dreading this riverboat trip. I pictured myself sitting at my typewriter with the sweat trickling down my face wishing that the misery of this trip were over. Well it hasn't been like that at all. It's been cool and comfortable ever since we left liberal though I understand that sometimes
it is uncomfortably hot on the Congo River. We seem to have been lucky. Most of the time there have been some clouds to cover the sun and the general breeze which is been very refreshing after the stifling heat of Lupul though. This experience reminds me of a quotation from Thomas Jefferson who once said How much have cost us the evils which never happened. I suppose about 90 percent of the things we worry about never happen at all at any rate I've decided that it's a foolish idea to keep anticipating troubles in advance. Troubles which probably will never happen. The scenery as the boat moves slowly up the river is quite varied. This is the rainy season and the green rolling hills and stately palm trees are very beautiful now and then we creep along an area where the forbidden swamps extend on either side of the river. As far as the eye can see the swamps do have their own kind of beauty. We see something else on the Congo River which appears beautiful but has become a
terrific problem to river navigation. The floating islands of highest since three years ago not a single Hyacinth could be seen on the river. Today the water is dotted with millions of these floating islands. Some of them 20 to 30 feet long. The government has spent millions of dollars spraying these plants. But it's a hopeless battle. They multiply so fast that the most that can be hoped for is that the constant spraying will hold them in check. Shakespeare I suppose would have described the situation in these words a little fire is quickly Dr. No. Which being suffered rivers cannot quench quick action during the first few days that these obnoxious flowers made their appearance would probably have nipped it in the bud. Now millions of dollars and tons of spray cannot wipe them out. This business of spraying the river is a very touchy problem because many fish have been poisoned by the spray. The result has been ruinous to many fisherman who depend on their
livelihood on the fish and the crocodiles that they are able to catch. The main reason why these floating highest since there is such a serious problem is that they often become untangled in the ship's propellers. Sometimes it takes an entire day to get this stuff removed from the propellers. You hear numerous stories about how this scourge of the river got started. One of the story it is that an American missionary brought the first plants here three years ago to beautify his lily pool. Since you hear so many different stories you wonder if this one is true. However when one of your fellow passengers tells you this story with an include accusing glance and the gleam in his eye you find yourself looking around for a hole to crawl into before you get the uncomfortable feeling that America is responsible for the whole miserable mess. America is blamed for so many things and now we have something else to worry about. The highest since on the Congo River.
This hazard to navigation up the Congo River is of importance to us for up this river is carried a great deal of cargo from the United States on the boat on which we are now passengers there are automobiles tractors bulldozers various types of machinery which have crossed the sea from America. And when the ship returns to Leopoldville from its journey into the heart of Africa it will be carrying cargo for our country consisting of palm oil gold bars and bags of gold dust copper and cobalt. The rivers of the Congo are the life line between Central Africa and the port of Metacity. It is not possible to transport the riches of the central Congo over the roads or in many parts of this country roads are either nonexistent or impassable for heavy transport and there are no roads between Port Frankie and label of the oil. The captain by the way is a very interesting person to talk to. A low he comes from Belgium.
He served with the American Merchant Marine during the war. His ships were torpedoed by German submarines three different times. The third time he drifted around in a lifeboat in the North Atlantic for 21 days. Following the war Captain Canada took up the business of boxing. He tells me that at first he worked as a sparring partner for Buddy Bear. Later he fought with Tony go mental or rather he fought to only go into it to a draw and he won a bout with Tommy Farr who was then heavyweight champion of Britain. He won that fight on points in the 15th run. Captain can I promise to give me an interview on my tape recorder. But it just didn't quite come off. Several times I thought I had him talked into it but each time he shied away. Evidently the 280 former heavyweight prize fighter was frightened by that little microphone. I took time out here for a moment. One of the passengers just called my attention to several Hippel bathing along a sandbar near the shore but I had
to return to our story. Here is a recording I did yesterday with one of my fellow passengers. We made the recording in my cabin just above the engine room. The hum that you hear in the background is the sound of the engines. You want to go ahead an interesting conversation that will test your list spent many months on the plantations of those known. As I'm planning to visit the homeland. He has I decided it would be rather interesting to do a recording of our conversation as a kind of preview of some of the things we'd like to see when we leave the woodland refunded. How long have you lived in the condo. I have faith in just going to meet me here I came from the mountains. Well then and in Belgium I believe you said you were going as far as banning them. Yes there we are I am glad that. You mentioned a moment ago that you had often watched native
workers climb the current three correct group from which the power neuer was me. How high do these trees were 0. 0 0 15 20 meters high. It depends on the age of fifty point twenty metres that's over 60 feet high. Yeah I understand that climbers here would treat with a kind of a belt made of. Bronze I suppose you could go and leaves a tree. The rather dangerous job business. Yes indeed it is better today. The man who came to the trees are very skilled. They don't like the issue and it better be a good option if you he said. Time and time or if we go he has too much light. Three hundred eighty two. Too much how much gas. You name your stock where the logs Texaco you know. We're now competing much meaning. That you know. Because it's funny while people wanting to fly. Instead of meeting.
You could be hash too much. Why yes at all. Dividend lives are good I did to leave the Y and I'm home when you're in the business of running under is you certainly need steady feet for that kind of a job those you oh yes say you have to let you live. It's very dangerous. What is the risk of borrowing from the tree. The most dangerous part of the job of gathering the group know I would say that it is something else even more. What is that getting to know. Oh if I could was me. There are snakes in the group. Oh yeah yeah yeah automation Inc. Yeah when a piece of you know. What kind of snake I don't know what you would call them dinners a guy don't reach me. We just show you I can think of a few more hair raising predicaments to be and then to be suspended 60 feet above ground leaning back against a belt made of rock and then
suddenly to have a snake who got his head at you from a crest or a home you couldn't afford to have weak knees in a situation like that could you. All I can say is that. I have only the greatest respect for the three climbers who have the courage to carry on in the face of that occupational hazard. Yes and it was like oh I was talking vision in the night on the boat. Who told the story of the man who was bitten by a snake. He was walking to France at night without a dog. All as you are seeing match tonight. When he was bitten by a snake. It must have to have been very fortunate because he became blind. Here. He regained his sight after two years. Yes he will hold right off that you know I had a similar experience several years of this weekend or. I was running across the grass at night. Why should I command you mentioned when suddenly something hit me hard. I kept
my right leg right to go around it. First I thought someone had thrown a rocket. When I realized that it was a snake. Did you get the actions against me. Yes I got the snakes here in a. Half hour. That wasn't. Very lame. That snake bite. For several months. I remember one day the doctor who treated me remarked. That he would receive that injection 20 minutes sooner. You would know that I know and. Then he added And if you get it 20 minutes later. You wouldn't have that trouble either. Oh yeah did it dad I think you were high. Fortunately I was not blind in the right hand you mentioned. But it was an experience I wouldn't want to go through again. That's one reason why I wouldn't want to make my living cramming pondering. No I wouldn't I did this.
Everybody here to talk to you then. Many thanks for the drink you have given us to do one thing at me and your story behind the gathering. Oh more. Now we are set up on another part of the ship away from the noise of the engines. We're approaching a little village of grass huts located on the waterfront. There are many of these tiny villages along the shores of the Congo. Usually as we draw near we can see the pierogies or canoes of the villages approaching the ship. These canoes contain bundles of men yok wrapped in leaves bananas and dried fish which the boatmen try to sow to the African passengers aboard. Usually the hero gets paddled by a three or four men who stand upright in the canoe. The only plausible explanation I have heard as to why the boatman don't sit as they paddle is that in a standing position they are less apt to have their arms taken off by crocodiles. Frankly I don't really know if that is the correct explanation or not but it does sound
plausible. This selling operation is a really risky business. Our ship does not slow down for the boatman and occasionally the boats are upset by the waves alongside the vessel when the boat men reach the ship they tie their canoes to the rail and bargain for the sale of their ware. Here comes one now drawing near to the ship before both men are peddling with all our might but I doubt if they will be able to meet you. You think that gap and I slow down to give or if I was a candidate. Now if it looks like they are going to make it but just by the skin of their teeth. Let's go on down to the lower deck now and pick up the sound of their arguing with their prospective customer. Not that one there. There
now we're back on the upper deck where a group of those and children are doing a little song and dance. It's a little French song about a girl by the name of Marianne. The words go something like this. Marianne Marianne where are you going. I'm going to buy potatoes for whom are you buying but it is from one of my friends who is your friend. And then the girl replies with the name of one of the children in the group. In this case it is young Pierre or Annie or Christine. I think we have just time enough on this tape to get a recording of a snatch of their song. This has been the program 12 of America's African heritage. These programs feature recordings made by world traveler skip Westfall on a recent trip to Africa. The series is made possible by a grant and a dual radio station w all Iowa State College probably Educational Television and Radio centered production is under the
direction of Norman B. Larry this is Ray disease speaking for the National Association of educational broadcasters. This is the end E.B. Radio Network.
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America's African heritage
Episode Number
11 And 12
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University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Race and Ethnicity
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University of Maryland
Identifier: 4898 (University of Maryland)
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