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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Trade and Politics and the German Occupation of Togoland, 1882-84
Author:Olorunfemi, A.
Periodical:Africana Marburgensia
Volume:Special issue
Geographic terms:German Togoland
mercantile history
History and Exploration
Politics and Government
Economics and Trade
Abstract:The German occupation of Togoland in 1884 illustrates the author's contention that the partition of Africa in the late 19th century comprised several different scrambles, each rooted in distinctive sets of local economic and political circumstances, rather than in a single all-embracing competition for 'balance of power' among European nations. Wedged in between the French territory of Dahomey in the east and the British colony of the Gold Coast in the west, Togoland remained for many years the only unannexed region of the west coast. The British only noticed it in the 1880s, when German trade with the 'independent posts' of Little and Great Popo, Bey Beach and Bageida was becoming more important than that of the British and French firms. The Gold Coast authorities were determined to put an end to what they saw as 'smuggling' and to extend their fiscal control eastwards over as much of the coast as possible, though without any political responsibility. The ensuing Anglo-German confrontation profitted from the succession disputes in Little Popo in 1883-1884, in which officials of the Gold Coast as well as French and German traders and their agents involved themselves. The ultimate result was the annexation of Togoland by Germany. Notes, ref.