recognising his true self. The Livingstone expedition was a newspaper-selling stunt by the New York Herald and Stanley was given a blank cheque to make it happen. He may have used the immortal, understated, phrase "Dr. Livingstone, I presume", or it may be a later massage of memory to make it all sound better. The flag in the picture is certainly fictional because it has way too many stripes. In 1818, an Act of the US Congress decreed that the number of stripes should be limited to 13, representing the original 13 colonies, while the number of stars should increase by one, on the 4th of July following the admission of a new state to the Union. From 1867-1877, following the admission of Nebraska, the number of stars was 37, so there are also way too few stars. tsk!
Stanley's subsequent expeditions in Central Africa frequently degenerated in to escapades in which almost everyone behaved badly, at least by subsequent standards. Stanley's push to trace the path of the Congo was an inspiration for Conrad's very dark Heart of Darkness. 70% of the expedition personnel didn't make it down river and Stanley was the only European to reach what passed for civilisation at Boma. Well 'ard was our Stanley.