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German East Africa, Circa 1905-1907

 Class — Carton: 28
Identifier: 28

Scope and Contents

A unique collection of photographs illustrating various stages in the construction of the railway; includes images of surveying and rail-laying, railway stations, both completed and under construction, work crews, derailed trains.


  • Circa 1905-1907


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

To inquire about access to this collection, please contact the Herskovits Library at

Historic Notes

The building of a railway line from Dar es Salaam to Tabora was first conceived in 1895 but delays in implementation occurred and it was not until February 1905 that construction started. The contract for the first section was awarded to Phillip Holzmann & Co. of Frankfurt-am-Main. The line to Morogoro was opened to traffic on December 16th, 1907, seven months ahead of the contractual requirement. Work on the section from Morogoro to Tabora began in June 1908 and the line reached Tabora on February 24th, 1912. By February 1914 it had been extended to Kigoma, a port on Lake Tanganyika, the distance from Dar es Salaam being 1,248 kilometres, with extensive realignments of the initial section to Morogoro having been carried out in 1912.


4 albums


Group of 4 albums containing 541 original photographs, many recording the building of the railway from Dar es Salaam to Tabora. Unidentified photographers, circa 1905-1907.

Library Details

Part of the Melville J. Herskovits Library of African Studies Repository

Main Library, 5th Floor, East Tower
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US