Kenneth Anderson was a writer and hunter who is known for his works on hunting stories of man eaters like tigers and leopard. He was of Scottish origin and lived in Bangalore. He was a colorful personality with had wide ranging interests apart from Hunting and Writing like Wildlife conservation, Meditation and Spirituality
The Tiger Roars
The Tiger Roars is hailed as the best of all of Anderson’s works. It was published in 1967. This book contains stories of hunting man eating tigers and leopards. Also Kenneth Anderson makes an appeal to Governments and all human beings to take care of the forest and wildlife to preserve it for the future generations. Short summary of some of the popular stories from this book follow.
The Novice of Manchi
This story is about a man eating tiger in the Salem district. Tribals of Manchi who are called as Poojarees are troubled by the man eating tiger. They approach Kenneth Anderson to hunt the tiger. Kenneth Anderson’s first attempt to shoot the tiger fails and here he talks about the superstitions of the poojarees where they think it is because of the black spell. Poojarees perform a pooja to remove the spell. After the pooja the grandon of the magician who performed the pooja is killed by the Tiger. Kenneth Anderson wants to use the body as a bait to hunt down the tiger. But poojaries want to burn the body so that soul can get peace which is another of their belief. But upon Anderson’s insistence they agree to allow the body to be used to attract tiger. On the night of hunting Anderson describes the spectacular events of tiger hunting down a dear and the fight between tiger and elephant which he describes by listening to the sounds. The elephants drive the tiger towards the body and Kenneth Anderson shoots the tiger.
The Lame Horror of Peddacheruvu
This story takes place in the dense forests of Andhra Pradesh near Sreesailam. Kenneth Anderson talks about the presence of a special species of antelope called Nilgiris here. They had become extinct in many other forests and were found only there. Kenneth Anderson also talk about why tigers become maneaters. When their usual prey starts becoming extinct, they take to hunting down domestic animals on the edge of the forests. The tribals and villagers attack it spears to protect the domestic animals hurting tigers which reduce their ability to hunt the traditional prey. This causes tigers to start attacking humans. This story is an exception to this as the reason for the tiger in this story to become a man eater is different. During the mating season there is a fight between male tigers for the female. This tiger had a fight with another tiger and had got injured in this fight. This made it weak and it had taken to attacking humans. Kenneth Anderson received a letter from his old telugu friend about the man eating tiger and he reaches the place to hunt the tiger. He sets up a machan in the forest where the tiger had attacked and waits for the tiger. When the tiger appears his attempt to shoot it fails. Later with the help of tribals he finds the regular drinking place of the tiger and finally shoots it down.
The Dumb Man-Eater of Talavadi
This is yet another story of the man eating tiger. In this story Kenneth Anderson talks about his friend Hughie Hailstone who lived in the nilgiri forest division in Coimbatore district. One day Hugie in his attempt to shoot a wild pig he had shot a tiger in the face and this wounded tiger had become a man eater. Hughie became ill and he could not hunt the tiger. So he write to Anderson for help in hunting this tiger. Kenneth Anderson after reaching the place sets up a machan with baits and waits for the tiger to arrive. Even after waiting for couple of nights there is no sign of the tiger. He hears from the villagers about the tiger killing a woman and he goes to meet the husband of the woman killed. He also learns that tiger has dragged away a girl as well. Following the trail he encounters the man eating tiger which he shoots down. He writes a thrlling account where the tiger attacks him from the back and he would not be alive to write if he had gone backwards instead of forward.
The Man-Hater of Talainovu
This is an interesting story about a Pantheress who had taken to hating humans. That is why the title is called man hater and not man eater. The pantheress was a young animal and had given birth to three cubs and had hid them in a bamboo thicket. One day the bamboo cutters discovered the cubs and killed them. The pantheress was deeply angered by the sight of the cubs and killed the bamboo cutters. This incident led to deep hatred in the pantheress about humans and it started attacking and killing the humans. It mutilated the bodies and was not eating it. The vengeful pantheress continued her attacks on men. The stretch of the Cauvery river where the pantheress was operating was a favorite fishing spot of Anderson. Once he and his son Donald had setup a camp there for fishing. The man-hater pantheress approached their camp at night and attempted to kill them. Anderson describes the entire drama of clash between the pantheress and his party which came to an end with the death of the pantheress by two shots fired by his son Donald.
The Black Panther of Sivanipalli
This is another popular book of Kenneth Anderson. In this book he describes the life of panthers and deals with all aspects of panther’s behavior. The mating habits, how they attack their prey, how they bring up the cubs etc. He analyzes why panthers become man eaters. His observation is that once having tasted human flesh, the panther often takes a liking to it.
The man-eating panther of the Yellagiri Hills
This is a story set in Yellagiri Hills which is 95 miles from Bangalore. Kenneth Anderson had purchased a farm of one and half acres to spend his weekends there in solitude and with nature. He got to know about a man eating panther in the area from the villagers. The panther had strayed into the village in search of prey and had taken to man eating. He also mentions about the encroachment of the forest from the men. Kenneth Anderson narrates the fascinating story of how he was on the verge of being attacked by the panther and how he hunts down the panther using donkeys and goats as bait. He also makes sure after hunting the panther that it is a man eating one from its old age and worn down canine teeth. There is also a narration of his supernatural experience in the farm which he had bought from an Anglo-Indian who villagers believed had become a spirit visiting the farm at night.
Old Munuswamy and the Panther of Magadi
In this story Kenneth Anderson talks about the a Panther which lived in the valley of Magadi Hills. It had started killing domestic animals like Cows and Bulls which alarmed the villagers. A rogue shikari guide Munuswamy who made his living cheating novice villagers about hunting, wanted to make a name for himself and went to hunt down the panther. He only managed to injure the panther and the injured panther had become more dangerous and got into man eating ways. It even attacked the police who went to hunt it down. Police arrested Munuswamy and gave him 4 day deadline to hunt the panther. Munuswamy requested help of Kenneth Anderson to hunt the panther. Kenneth Anderson goes to the cave of Magadi Hills where panther was living and kills it.
The Black Panther of Sivanipalli
Sivanipalli was a favorite place of Kenneth Anderson for a weekend excursion. He mentions the presence of a tiger, an elephant, a panther, sambar, bison in its forest. A herdsman once noticed a Black panther drinking water from one of the water holes. A black panther was extremely rare in this part and it was not known to the villagers. The panther started attacking the domestic animals and villagers were afraid to take their animals for grazing beyond village boundaries. Kenneth Anderson was excited to hear this news and decided to hunt down the panther. He describes a thrilling tale of how once in darkness he faced the panther and shot at it but panther escaped. The blood trail led to cave and he shot the panther down. At that time he disturbed a bee hive and got attacked by bees badly. He took the skin of Black panther as it was a rare commodity with him to Bangalore.
The killer From Hyderabad
This is the story of a man eating tiger in the state of Hyderabad near Cuddapah. Kenneth Anderson describes the geography of the area in detail and also the tribals living near the forest. The tiger had killed eleven people, Hyderabad state called for hunters. The nawab of Hyderabad attempted to hunt the tiger but could only injure it. Kenneth Anderson took up the challenge went to the place as the number of victims increased. When the tiger killed the wife of a tribal he went to the place and used the dead body as the bait to draw the tiger out. He shot at the tiger but it escaped. The blood trail did not help in locating the tiger. It remained a mystery if the tiger died as there were more reports of victims.
The Big Bull Bison of Gedesal
This is not a typical story of hunting by Kenneth Anderson. He used to frequently visit the Biligirirangam range and it is here that he observed a big bison which was a leader of a bison herd. In this story Kenneth Anderson explains the social system of the bison herd in detail. He describes a bison fight which he had seen first time. The fight lasted for many hours and the big bison managed to severely wound the opponent bison. He also talks about the fight between a tiger and the big bison and when he went to the fight spot saw the carcass of the tiger. Following the blood trail he found the same big bison which was severely wounded. He appreciates the heroism of the big bison.
The Maned Tiger of Chordi
This is a fascinating story of a man eating tiger which caused great trouble to the villagers. Kenneth Anderson describes how the tiger got into man eating ways. He took almost 5 years to hunt this tiger. Many others also attempted to hunt the tiger and had managed to injure the tiger. The tiger was very smart and had avoided falling for the bait of domestic animals and only preyed on humans. Kenneth Anderson describes the hardship of being a hunter on the ground compared to the thrill of listening to the hunter stories.
Man-eater of Pegepalyam
This is the last story of the book and it is an incomplete story as Kenneth Anderson could not hunt it down and mentions it is still alive at the time of writing. The tiger of this story is the same animal in the story of ‘Mauler of Rajnagara’ in his earlier book “Man-eater and Jungle killers”. The story continues where Kenneth Anderson describes his attempts to try hunting this man eating tiger again. When Kenneth Anderson fails in hunting this down his son Donald also attempts to hunt this tiger. Kenneth Anderson in this story is lost in memories of the jungle and one gets absorbed in his narrative of the jungle.
JUNGLES LONG AGO
This is the only book of Kenneth Anderson that was published after his death. This book does not have any hunting stories instead concentrating on his exciting days and nights spent midst the folk inhabiting the places on the fringes of dark forests.
One of the interesting chapter talks about the art of curing sicknesses in rural and tribal areas. It reveals how certain animals are sacrificed to make medicines. Kenneth Anderson gives example of how the poor people deal with a recent injury to finger or leg like applying sticky cowdung to the wound. He reviews various schools of therapies that prevails in the country. He begins with ‘gem therapy’, the art of curing sickness by the semiprecious stones. He mentions three ways of performing it. He has also discussed the Tibetan prayer-wheel treatment. He also talks about some of the wild creatures of the jungle in great trouble because of their medicinal value.
The chapter ‘Occult Lore and other matters’ throws light on social life and beliefs in the Southern India. Kenneth Anderson also mentions about a number of persons living in India who performs miracles. He writes on the black magicians of India, person filled with a supernatural power, hypnotism and provides few examples for the justification.
There is also a chapter where Kenneth Anderson describes a story about the mystery of series of murders resulting from a love affair.
In the book Kenneth Anderson also confesses that he had killed animals only in case of necessity. He expresses his regret for the sins of his youth. Kenneth Anderson appears to be very sincere in his commitment for the cause of preservation of the wild life and the jungles.
This was a short summary of some of the popuplar stories of Kenneth Anderson.
The description of full works of Kenneth Anderson can be found from this link .
Also this link gives a fascinating insight about Kenneth Anderson and his experience with consciousness expanding drugs.