John Hanning Speke
Person Male Born 4/5/1827 Died 15/9/1864
Explorer. Born Devon. The first European, while on an expedition with Richard Burton to East Africa in 1858, to discover Lake Victoria. On a subsequent journey with James Grant in 1862, he confirmed its northern outlet as the source of the Nile. Burton queried whether Speke really had found the source of the Nile and the two fell out. Murchison arranged a debate between them. Two days before this debate Speke left a lunch where Burton was present, to go on a partridge shoot. Climbing over a wall he shot himself. Suicide was suspected but never proved. Since his death there have been suggestions that he was a repressed homosexual, although he is known to have fathered a child in Buganda, and even that he and Burton had had an intimate relationship.