Papers of Eric Arnold Temple-Perkins

Scope and Content

Correspondence, diaries, photographs, memoirs, etc. relating to Temple-Perkins' service in Uganda. Also, a copy of his book, Kingdom of the Elephant, with related correspondence and press cuttings (including some about African wild life).

Administrative / Biographical History

Eric Arnold Temple-Perkins (1890-1972) was born in New Zealand. After serving throughout World War I with the Royal Field Artillery he joined the Colonial Service; his first posting was as Assistant District Commissioner in Teso, a post he held for three years. In 1922 Temple-Perkins became District Commissioner of Karamoja, however, after only three months he was made Labour Commissioner in charge of the newly formed Labour Department.

Over the next (circa) fifteen years Temple-Perkins served as District Commissioner of Ankole (1924-ca.1929), District Commissioner of Masaka (ca.1929-1932) and Provincial Commissioner of Buganda (1932-1934) of Toro (1935-1936) and of the Eastern Province of Uganda (1937-1938).

During World War II he was made Director of Security and Intelligence in Uganda. In 1944 he became Resident of Buganda; this was his last official appointment until his retirement in 1945.

Temple-Perkins chose to remain in Uganda after he retired and lived on the edge of the Queen Elizabeth National Park. He had always been interested in wildlife and had been on many safaris to shoot big game; he had also made studies of African birds and snakes. In 1952 he was made an Honorary Warden of Uganda's National Parks. He published one book about his many hunting experiences entitled Kingdom of the Elephant.

Access Information

Bodleian reader's ticket required.


Collection level description created by Marion Lowman, Bodleian Library of Commonwealth and African Studies at Rhodes House.

Other Finding Aids

The library holds a card index of all manuscript collections in its reading room and a handlist is also available for this collection.

Listed as no. 1161 in Manuscript Collections in Rhodes House Library Oxford, Accessions 1978-1994 (Oxford, Bodleian Library, 1996).

Conditions Governing Use

No reproduction or publication of personal papers without permission. Contact the library in the first instance.