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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Archaeological research at Kasana, Upper West Region, Ghana
Author:Bredwa-Mensah, Yaw
Periodical:Transactions of the Historical Society of Ghana (ISSN 0855-3246)
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Ghana
West Africa
History, Archaeology
slave trade
Kasana (Ghana)
Abstract:Kasana (near Tumu in Ghana's Upper West Region), a site related to the slave trade, has recently become the focus of exploratory archaeological research. Kasana is remembered in Sissala and Grunsi oral narratives as the ancient Grunsi settlement where the notorious slave raider Mahama dan Issa, otherwise known as Babatu, and other Zabarima warrior leaders established a slave market in the late 19th century. This paper presents preliminary results of a two-week archaeological investigation carried out in Kasana in 2003. Direct archaeological evidence of slavery and the slave trade could not be obtained during this short period. More in general, the archaeological data revealed that the occupants of ancient Kasana exploited local resources for subsistence, and that iron smelting and smithing were perhaps two important occupations that became the mainstay of the local economy before and during the Zabarima military occupation. As military warlords and slave raiders, the Zabarima may have chosen Kasana as their headquarters because of the local people's knowledge of iron smelting and smithing. Presently, archaeological evidence indicating the presence of foreigners at Kasana may be that of horse bones and rectangular, brick architecture. Bibliogr., ref. [ASC Leiden abstract]