Africa history and deep questions about slavery
@All, I have a few questions, about Africa, although, I am not in the mood for emotional outrage or verbal combat.
1. Were Africans, active participants in the slave trade?
2. Was the slave trade used as a source of economic wealth back then?
3. Were the government or kingdoms of the day complicit in it?
4. Do we like to hear or read these parts of the history?
5. Are we really being dilligent for the longterm, by ignoring this part of our history?
6. Are there solutions to today’s cultural norms or issues that could be traced back to our history, and corrected from there?
7. Yes, indeed there are great parts of our history that foreign invaders tried to blot out to oppress us, but will we discern them, if we don’t know what was what. What was a spade to call it a spade?
I ask these 7 questions because i stumbled on some of our history, while investigating something completely different regarding our ancient kingdoms.
See the following extracts:
Extract 1:”Therefore the battle for Lagos/Eko in 1850 andfinally the 1897 battle for Benin City was inenvitable. Some historians intended to see the battle for Lagos/Eko as a Kosoko and Akintoye affair. It was actually a battle between Britain on one hand and Benin/Portuguese onthe other .
Kosoko was vehemently anti-British and pro slave trade ,because of theactivities of the British missionaries in Abeokuta and their support forAkintoye influnced by Madam Tinubu, who was herself a great slave trader.In the end Britain and Akintoye/Madam Tinubu won and Kosoko/Benin lost..Kosovo took to flight and hunted from place by British agents, his secondson OLOJO ended up in Benin City just before the British invasion. Olojowas arrested by the Benin soldiers as a spy for the British, since he spokeyoruba and came from Lagos.
Extract 2:Ulsheimer also gives us the first account, documenting the transformation of Lagos from fishing camp to a trading centre, and from an autonomous settlement to a Benin tributary. Lagos Lagoon was known to European traders by 1485, when it first appeared on maps, but the town of Lagos was not included. Nor was it mentioned by Portuguese and later Dutch merchants who were trading in the area with the Ijebu in cloth, slaves and ivory by15192 Oral evidence indicates that the Portuguese were sufficiently interested in the trade in this area to have established themselves in the Ijada quarter of Ijebu-Ode. But their written documents as those of other foreign traders are silent concerning a town of Lagos for most of the sixteenth century.
Extract 3: (Son of an Igbo Chief kidnapped and sold by his own, he later said, his yearned to be like the SLAVES in his own country.)
Olaudah Equiano was born in Essaka, an Igbo village in the kingdom of Benin (now Nigeria) in 1745. His father was one of the province’s elders who decided disputes. According to James Walvin “Equiano described his father as a local Igbo eminence and slave owner”.
When he was about eleven, Equiano was kidnapped and after six months of captivity he was brought to the coast where he encountered white men for the first time. Equiano later recalled in his autobiography, The Life of Olaudah Equiano the African (1787): “The first object which saluted my eyes when I arrived on the coast, was the sea, and a slave ship, which was then riding at anchor, and waiting for its cargo. These filled me with astonishment, which was soon converted into terror, when I was carried on board. I was immediately handled, and tossed up to see if I were sound, by some of the crew; and I was now persuaded that I had gotten into a world of bad spirits, and that they were going to kill me. Their complexions, too, differing so much from ours, their long hair, and the language they spoke, (which was very different from any I had ever heard) united to confirm me in this belief. Indeed, such were the horrors of my views and fears at the moment, that, if ten thousand worlds had been my own, I would have freely parted with them all to have exchanged my condition with that of the meanest slave in my own country.
Lastly, before, any one attempts to discredit this as spun by white media or historians too, becareful, because there is a thread with implicating information which should not surprise us at all, the evidence is still very much around us on the ground and in our culture.