National Geographic : 1956 Sep
361 George Rodger-Magnum When Thatch Is Added, the Framework Will Shed Kano's Drenching Summer Rains Through limericks and romantic descrip tions, Timbuktu, in French West Africa, has come to be regarded as the most colorful city of interior Africa.* To me, Kano deserves fully as much emphasis. For centuries it has been an important political and trade center. I saw pits where cloths still are dyed blue with vegetable indigo for local use and for the caravan trade. And in secluded court yards I watched goatskins being fleshed, tanned, and dyed into the red, green, and brown leather known to merchants everywhere as "morocco." Although the British have been in northern Nigeria since its occupation in 1903 by Sir Frederick (later Lord) Lugard, they have left much of the local government in the hands of the native rulers. Most bear the title of emir, though Sokoto has a sultan who also is considered the religious leader. * See "Timbuktu and Beyond," by Laura C. Boul ton, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE, May, 1941.