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Col John Henry Patterson
Birth: Nov. 10, 1867
County Longford, Ireland
Death: Jun. 18, 1947
Bel Air
Los Angeles County
California, USA

British Army Officer, Author, Zion Activist. In February 1898, John Henry Patterson was commissioned to oversee the construction of a railway bridge over the Tsavo river in Kenya, East Africa. Over the next nine months, lion attacks escalated to the point where the bridge construction eventually ceased due to a mass departure of the work force. The man-eating behavior was eventually confirmed to be the work of a pair of rogue males, who were believed to be responsible for as many as one hundred-forty deaths. After months of near misses, Patterson finally killed the first lion on Dec. 9th, 1898, and killed the second one on Dec. 29th (narrowly escaping death in the process). Each lion was over nine feet long from nose to tip of tail and required eight men to carry it back to the camp. With the man-eater threat eliminated, the work force returned and the Tsavo railway bridge was completed in February 1899, where it still stands today. His 1907 book, "The Maneaters of Tsavo", was the basis for the 1996 Paramount Pictures film, The Ghost and the Darkness, starring Val Kilmer (as Patterson) and Michael Douglas. He also wrote a second book of his Africa experiences, "In the Grip of the Nyika" (1909). In 1924, Patterson sold the Tsavo lion skins and skulls to the Field Museum in Chicago, Illinois, where they are now mounted on permanent display. Although he was himself a Protestant, he became a major figure in Zionism as the commander of both the Zion Mule Corps and of the 38th Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers (aka Jewish Legion of the British Army) in World War One. He ultimately achieved the rank of Lt. Colonel, and retired from the British Army in 1920. Patterson was a strong supporter of the establishment of a separate Jewish state in the Middle East, which was realized with the statehood of Israel on May 14, 1948, less than a year after his death. He authored his experiences during these times in two books; "With the Zionists at Gallipoli" (1916) and "With the Judeans in the Palestine Campaign" (1922). Patterson and his wife Francine lived in a modest home in La Jolla, California for a number of years, and he spent his final years at the home of his friend, Marion Travis in Bel Air, California, where he eventually died in his sleep at eighty years of age. (bio by: Todd Young) 
 
Burial:
Angelus Rosedale Cemetery
Los Angeles
Los Angeles County
California, USA
Plot: Mausoleum, Niche 952-OC (Old Column)
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Todd Young
Record added: Sep 19, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 15815142
Col John Henry Patterson
Added by: Todd Young
 
Col John Henry Patterson
Added by: Jerry klinger
 
Col John Henry Patterson
Added by: Jerry klinger
 
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Col Patterson, For those us us fellow hunters that read of your life and times, I envy you and still hold what you accomplished in your life with high regard. I will meet you in just a little while. 8/20/2015Larry Francis
- Larry Francis
 Added: Aug. 19, 2015

- Maggie
 Added: Mar. 19, 2015
I have just read that the ashes of John and Frances Patterson were moved to a cemetery in Israel, as requested by Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. November 2014. It was John's wish to be buried in Israel along with the soldiers with whom he fought.
- Theron & Helen Smith
 Added: Oct. 27, 2014
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