Annamboe: The Role Of The Port In The Slave Trade

Table of Contents


Original: The cat jumped onto the table.

Paraphrased: The feline leapt onto the furniture.

African Kings and Merchants Sold Africans

Power Dynamics at Annamaboe

To sum up,

An opening statement

The trans-Atlantic slave exchange was a fascinating phenomenon that took place between the 15th and the 20th centuries. Millions of Africans were shipped to America, where they became slaves. Since most African commodities were crucial to Europe’s industrialization (e.g. gold, ivory, rice and camwood), Europeans used Annamaboe to trade slaves. Annamaboe used to be a quiet fishing village before the Europeans arrived and made it a major slave-trade hub.

Europeans initially considered forcing African leaders to slave trade, but they soon realized they needed diplomacy. The African slaves were sent to America by force, but the Europeans didn’t have to use force because they had paid their African counterparts a lot of money to slave them. Many saw this as a sign of cruelty and selfishness, and it led to the Trans-Atlantic slavery trade. Many slaves died of hunger or exhaustion as Europeans were living the fruits of industrialization. It was especially hard for Africans who were forced to be slaves over a prolonged period of time. But, it is important to also consider the other side. One can see that the trans-Atlantic slave trading was not just perpetrated by Europeans if one looks back over the entire history. African merchants and leaders are also responsible for the suffering and death caused by the slave trade. The Portuguese actually sent African princes to Portugal for study.

African merchants and kings didn’t view poor Africans as Africans. They saw them as criminals, debtors, or prisoners. They were not impressed by their social status. For African merchants and kings, it was important to have power, money, and protection against enemies (Hazard (2014)). The Europeans would be able to buy these slaves for a lot of money and still maintain their power. Slavery allowed African kingdoms to prosper even though their African counterparts were being savaged and exploited by the Europeans. African merchants and royalty were able to enjoy their power and wealth as they worked all night.

Despite being mostly criminals and debtors, the Africans sent to America had to be sold and made slaves. They were forced into servitude for Europeans and African traditional leaders, and they were also kidnapped. Many died on the long and exhausting journey. According to some reports, Europeans did not buy slaves from African rulers. It was surprising, too, that Africans who died during the period were more numerous than African slaves working for Europeans. This was because African Kings killed any slave trader who disagreed with them. It was also known that African slave traders collaborated even before the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. The Arabs took children and adults and converted them to Islam (Priolo (2008)).

Although the slave trading took place over a century ago, people, particularly Africans, have difficulty moving on from this unpleasant experience. In 2009, a Nigerian Civil Rights organization asked the tribal leader of their tribe to apologize as Britain and America did. The group said that not only should white men be held responsible, but also African leaders who aided them in selling their fellow Africans as slaves. The kidnapping of these Africans was also done by some chiefs. Shenu Sani, the head of Congress, demanded an apology for traditional rulers who were trying to include Nigeria in a constitution amendment (Smith, 2009). Although the issue is not a priority for most Africans and many politicians have remained silent about the shameful past of their ancestors’, it is reasonable that they should be reprimanded for their actions to their people. Traditional rulers chose to pursue their selfish goals instead of fighting for the people.

These facts show that Europeans were not able to force Africans into slavery in Annamaboe. The long-lasting slavery that was allowed by African merchants and Kings was also a result of selfish motives. The Trans-Atlantic slavery trade had a profound impact on Africans, particularly the poorest. Slavery that was carried out over many years led to racism in which Africans were treated with unjustifiable prejudice by white men. The slave trade was still fresh in African minds. Unfortunately, racism is still a problem.

The Power Dynamics at Annamaboe The country was ruled at that time by kings who had various kingdoms. Fante merchants were able to have daily contact with people like Rhode Island Rum men and European slave traders, as well as Englishmen from The Royal African Company. Heller, 2016, states that African merchants and leaders were allowed to negotiate with European traders if they were able to do so in a way that was beneficial to them. Fante traders and traditional African leaders wielded power in Annamaboe. Anybody who violated their rules and suffered the consequences of their actions or those of Europeans would die. Slavery led to Annamaboe becoming more powerful. Fante towns had gods that lived in sacred locations (Sparks, 2014).

In short, selfishness was at the root trans-Atlantic slave trading. It was selfishness that led to the death of two groups, the Europeans as well as the African traditional rulers. Although Americans and Europeans are still being blamed around the world for the Trans-Atlanticslave Trade, it is important to consider the role played by African kings/merchants in this terrible and tragic event in African History. It was impossible to erase the pain and suffering caused by the slave trade, even if the African rulers were to be rebuked. This historical incident only showed that money, wealth and powerful are the root cause of most evils. Conspiracy is difficult to stop both now and in the past. The Europeans sought wealth and power while the African merchants and rulers wanted security, influence, and prosperity. If African traditional leaders hadn’t negotiated with Europeans, they might have prevented the brutality and slavery that their fellow Africans were subject to. Unfortunately, their actions were not considered by the Europeans. They only cared about their own personal pleasure and desires.


  • nicholashopkins

    Nicholas Hopkins is a social media teacher, writer and educator. He has been blogging since 2009, and has since published over 20 articles and taught social media in high school and college. He is currently a social media teacher and blogger at Nicholas Hopkins Academy.