History of Colonial Africa
Experience the History of Colonial Africa with WisdomMaps: The Future of the Past!
Our digital history of colonial Africa begins with the arrival of the Portuguese. They were the first Europeans to enter the slave trade in the late 15th century. They traded for slaves at first, and for 400 years, they limited their involvement to trading stations on the African coast. From there, they sent slaves to Europe, often as household servants, and later to Brazil as plantation slaves. Few slave traders dared venture inland from the coast, deterred by disease and hostile tribes in the interior. But technology helped to overcome these obstacles. Increasingly lethal weaponry was developed that included repeating rifles, the Maxim machine gun, and artillery. And the discovery in 1854 of quinine provided an effective preventative of malaria. Diseases such as yellow fever, sleeping sickness, leprosy, yaws, and most of all, malaria, made Africa a very challenging environment for Europeans.
There were compelling motives for Europe’s conquest of Africa. Raw materials were needed for the industries of the Industrial Revolution. The prestige of owning African colonies showed strength to rivals, and missionaries spread Christianity. This culminated in the Scramble for Africa among European empires in the 19th century, whether for raw materials, strategic prominence, or as part of an effort to develop enduring colonies.
That said, here’s our assortment… please enjoy! When you’re done perusing a map, click the ⇠ back arrow link in the upper left of your screen (not the < link), and you’ll be back here. Any problems, please get in touch at [email protected]
Colonial Africa Index | Society: European Primary • Change | Religion: Christianity • Spirit Churches • Islam in Africa: Jihad | Power: Governance • Economic and Social Change • Scramble for Africa: France and Britain • Resistance | Slavery: Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade • Kingdom of Asante • Kingdom of Dahomey • Kingdom of Kongo • Kingdom of Ndongo • Kingdom of Oyo • End to the Slave Trade | Pre-World War I | World War II | British Colonies | Challenge to Colonial Rule | Shaka Zulu • Independence Movements | Pan-Africanism | African National Congress | Economy | East Africa: Power: Polities • Progression | Ethiopia: Religion • Power: Revival • Disintegration | Kenya | Central Africa | North Africa | Southern Africa: Society • Power: Colonization • Moshoeshoe | West Africa