Although the celebrated explorer and missionary David Livingstone, believing he was the first white man to see the falls, decided to name the Falls after the British Queen Victoria in 1855 some historians believe that Hartley first saw the falls in 1849.
Hartley was born in Mansfield, England in 1815 and arrived in South Africa with his family in 1820. As a young adult Hartley began pursuing a life of adventure and excitement, farming, trading, hunting big game and exploring what was in the mid 1800’s a poorly known continent.
During his years as a hunter and explorer he forged a friendship with the Matabele King, Mzilikazi, and was renowned for his extensive knowledge of vast area of the southern Africa interior.
He died in what is now Zimbabwe, never fully recovering from injuries sustained after being charged by a wounded rhino.