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THE STORY OF THE MAN-EATING LIONS

The Tsavo Man-Eaters on display in the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois.

The Tsavo Man-Eaters on display in the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois.

The railway museum has what it takes for anyone to unravel the marvelous story behind the man-eating lions that existed in Kenya during the early days of the construction of the Kenya-Uganda Railway line. The man-eating lions were the most notorious and extra-ordinary creatures that ever existed in the animal kingdom.

The man-eating lions killed an estimated 140 workers who were part of the railway line construction team around Tsavo area in the year 1898 in which police Superintendent Sir Charles Ryall was among those killed. This led to the Indian coolies boycotting work for 3weeks. They went back to Mombasa until they heard that the two most notorious man-eating lions had been killed. The dead lions were preserved and transported to a museum in Chicago where they are currently kept. There are current ongoing negotiations between the United States and the Kenya governments to bring back to the museum the preserved lions.

The claws of one of the lions killed in 1899 at Kima Station have been kept at the Railway museum, and can be accessed upon request to the museum curator by anyone who visits the museum. These claws are closed in a safe to avoid a repeat of a situation in which the same claws were initially broken into and stolen from a display glass, but they were later recovered with the help of the police and are now safely kept at the Railway museum.

A DNA test can be done from the blood traces that remained on the surface of the claws to determine the genetic make-up of the most notorious man-eating lions in the pursuit to explain the causal connection between their desires for human flesh.