Who Got Mount Kilimanjaro For A Birthday Present From Queen Victoria?

In 1848, a German explorer reported the discovery of a snow-clad mountain in Central Africa, only a few hundred miles from the Equator.

Europeans scoffed at the idea that such a mountain could exist, until other explorers saw the snow-clad peak a few decades later.

This peak is Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa at 19,340 feet. Its name means “Mountain of Cold Devils,” as even though the mountain’s base basks in a hot equatorial climate, ice and snow often cover the upper part of the mountain.

The snow-covered top of Mount Kilimanjaro can be seen from as far away as 200 miles and is a strange sight indeed in this hot region.

Mount Kilimanjaro originally lay within the British colony of Kenya. But it was included in the neighboring Germany colony (which is now the nation of Tanzania) as a birthday present from British Queen Victoria to the German ruler, Kaiser Wilhelm!

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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