National Geographic : 1924 Jan
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE TIMBUKTU, MYSTERIOUS CITY OF TIHE SAHARA (SEE MAP, PAGE 46) This ancient city of nomads and Moors was formerly a fabulously rich and powerful com mercial metropolis of the Sahara. Standing in the midst of burning, shifting sands and a parched vegetation of gum trees, mimosas, and coarse grass, Timbuktu was founded in 1077 by the Tuareg Berbers, then passed into Moorish hands. Mohammedan fanaticism frightened Christians away from it until 1826. Joffre occupied it for the French in 1893. Photographs by Agence Economique du Gouvernement General de 1'Afrique Occidentale Francaise UNLOADING BARS OF SALT The most exciting event of the year at Timbuktu is the arrival of the salt caravan (see page 80), when natives come in from miles around to purchase a year's supply of the precious commodity, which is obtained from desert mines 300 miles north of the city.