Lord Randolph Henry Spencer Churchill (1849–95), the father of Prime Minister Winston Churchill, was an important British politician of the late 19th century. First elected to Parliament in 1874, he went on to serve as secretary of state for India, leader of the House of Commons, and Chancellor of the Exchequer. Churchill resigned from the cabinet of Lord Salisbury in December 1886. To recover his health and restore his finances, in 1891 he made a long visit to South Africa, where he hunted, made investments in gold mines, and met with the Dutch (i.e., Afrikaner) and British residents of what was then the British Cape Colony. Churchill’s travels took him through much of present-day South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe. He recorded his impressions in a series of letters for the London newspaper The Daily Graphic and later revised these letters for publication in book form. Separate chapters of the work are devoted to diamonds, gold, lions, the trek across Bechuanaland (present-day Botswana), and other topics. Churchill was favorably impressed by the climate, scenery, and mineral wealth of South Africa and called for increased British immigration to the country.