Sir Henry Morton Stanley makes his first trip to Africa in order to find Dr. David Livingston. After finding Dr. Livingston he is commissioned by King Leopold II of Belgium and explores the Congo.
Wilhelm Junker, receives an unusual piece of striped skin. The animal is called “makapi” by the local people.
Captain Jean Baptise Marchand sees an unknown “antilope” along the river bank and describes the animal in his journal.
Sir Henry Morton Stanley publishes his book In Darkest Africa. In volume 2, appendix B, he writes “The Wambutti knew a donkey and called it atti. They say that they sometimes catch them in pits. What they can find to eat is a wonder. They eat leaves.”
Sir Harry Johnston meets Sir Henry Morton Stanley. They talk about the mysterious animal living in the Congo Independent State.
October, 1900
The Belgian government of the Congo asks Johnston’s help  in returning a group of kidnapped pygmies to their home in the Ituri Forest. They describe a large forest animal they call “o’api”. When Johnston is able to return them, he stops at Fort Mbeni in the Semliki Forest.  Lieutenant Meura gives him two okapi-skin bandoliers . Johnston is unable to find the elusive animal. His party becomes ill, he abandons the search and returns to Uganda. The Belgian soldiers promise to send him a complete skin. Back in Uganda, Johnston sends the two okapi-skin bandoliers to Europe  for identification.
November, 1900
Dr. Sclater receives the two bandoliers, examines the two pieces of skin and asks Dr. Ridgewood to examine the hairs.  He declares their structurally indistinguishable from the hair of a zebra.
December 18th, 1900
Dr. Sclater exhibits the two bandoliers for the first time during the meeting of the London Zoological Society.
February 5th, 1901
During this meeting of the London Zoological Society, Dr. Sclater announces the specific diagnosis and name of this newly discovered animal.

Equus (?) johnstoni, sp. nov.
Supra saturate nigro-cinereus aut fulvus; cruribus intus albicantibus, ccruribus extus et lateribus fasciis nigris, utringue castaneo disticte limbatis, ornatis; capite longo extensor.
Hab. In sylvis fluvio Semliki adjacentibus

February, 1901
Lieutenant Karl Erikson sends a complete skin and two skulls to Johnston. In the enclosed note he describes the hoof as cloven. The shape of the skull tells Johnston this animal must be a relative of the giraffe. He sends the skin, skulls and letter  to England and adds a watercolor of two okapi.
May 7th, 1901
The skin and the two skulls are exhibited during this the meeting of the Zoological Society.
June 8th,1901
Sir Harry Johnston talks about the discovery of the o’api and suggests Helladotherium tigrinum as the scientific name.
Later this year, Lankaster publishes “Exhibition of and remarks upon two skulls and a skin of the newly discovered African mammal (Okapia johnstoni)”. The new scientific name Okapia johnstoni is born.
Fraipont publishes the first Okapi Monograph.
Ray Lankaster publishes his Monograph of the Okapi.