Empire Building in Africa CHAPTER 21 SECTION 2 EARLY 20TH CENTURY West Africa West Africa has had a long relationship with Europeans dating back to the first wave of Colonization. When Europeans needed a new stream of slaves, they traded manufactured goods to the West African Kingdoms in exchange for slaves.
As the Slave trade declined, European interests shifted from slaves to other raw good such as peanuts, hides, timber, & palm oil. Colonization in Africa began with the British in 1874 when they annexed a number of states along the Atlantic coast of Africa. The new territory was renamed the Gold Coast. Later on they added Nigeria as they coerced the kings to sign a treaty making Nigeria a British Protectorate. The French would also get involved in acquiring territory in West Africa,
holding more terrain in that region than any other country. Germany also had holdings in west Africa as they controlled Togo & Cameroon. West Africa North Africa Egypt for long time was part of the Muslim Ottoman Empire. An Ottoman officer named Muhamad Ali, inspired by nationalism took control of Egypt
and established a separate independent state. Ali began a number of reforms to modernize Egypt. He established schools, small scale industrialization & he created a modern military. The valuable commodities of the Nile River Valley quickly attracted European interest. The French signed a contract with Egypt to build a canal to connect the Mediterranean sea & the Red Sea, the canal will be known as the Suez canal.
England looking for a quicker route to get to India had an interest in the Suez canal, buying out the Egyptian half. When some Egyptians resisted British control of the Suez, the British quickly ended the revolt and forced Egypt to sign a treaty making them a British protectorate in 1914. North Africa The British sought to add to their North African territory by focusing on the Sudan, south of Egypt. After a revolt in the Sudan, led by Muslims successfully pushed back the British, Sudan was able to have some independence for a short period of
time. The British continued to return with troops until they finally brought the Sudan under their control in 1898. France also had colonial holdings in North Africa including Algeria, Tunisia & Morroco. Italy, new to colonization as they had not been involved in the first wave, acquired Libya. They also tried to acquire Ethiopia but were defeated becoming the 1st European nation to be defeated by Africans.
North Africa Central Africa Much of Africas interior remained a mystery to many Europeans prompting many explorers to move to the region. The most famous of these explorers was David Livingston. He mapped uncharted regions making maps that were massed produced back in Europe. Hes most valuable contribution was mapping the large river system.
After Livingston disappeared, an American named Henry Stanley was hired to find him. Stanley eventually found Livingston off the shores of Lake Tanganyika, greeting with the now famous quote Dr. Livingston I presume?. Stanley had navigated the newly discovered Congo River to the Atlantic Ocean proving that there was a waterway that allowed access to Africas interior. Stanley urged the British to migrate in large numbers. The British refused opening the door for a new player, Belgium to carve out a piece of Africa. Central Africa
East Africa Britain & Germany had by far the largest presence in East Africa. Otto von Bismarck , the German Chancellor initially was against expanding through colonization , but pressure forced hi to commit to it. Portugal & Belgium soon turned their attention to this African region leading to the Berlin conference to settle disputes. The resolution clearly outlined British & German territories, And
Portugal received Mozambique. Belgium did not gain anything & no Africans were present during the conference. East Africa South Africa Mass European migration occurred in South Africa with over 200,000 white Europeans calling that area home. Many of the inhabitants of South Africa were the descendants of the Dutch. They called themselves Boers or Afrikaners to distinguish themselves from the dark skinned Africans.
The Dutch lost claim to South Africa during the Napoleonic wars, The British now controlled this territory. Boers unhappy with British rule moved from the coast lands in what became known as the Great Trek. Settling between the Orange & Vaal rivers, they established 2 independent republics, Orange Free State & Transvaal. Extremely racist, The Boers did not allow non whites into their society. They frequently battled the Zulus an indigenous group of people from that area.
The Zulus lead by Shaka Zulu were able to defend themselves and create their own empire. South Africa Conflict would soon arise between Europeans in Africa during the Boer Wars. Cecil Rhodes, an entrepanuer who had made a fortune off of Gold & Diamond mines in South Africa wanted to connect all of Britain's colonial holdings through a rail road. The main issue was that the rail road needed to be built through Transvaal, the area settles by the Boers.
The Boer War lasted from 1899 to 1902, with the British eventually becoming victorious. As a result of the British victory, the 2 territories, British Cape Colony and the Boer republics would be unified. To appease the Boers, the British agreed not to let any Africans into the new political structure. South Africa Effects of Imperialism Indirect Rule was very effective in Africa especially for the British. Local official got to keep their culture & customs, but the British
made all the major decision. The only Africans that benefitted from indirect rule were the former elites who maintained their power, but for everyone else, things got worse. Nationalism also made its way to Africa with many Africans inspired by enlightenment idelas.
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