History of Cameroon

related topics
{country, population, people}
{land, century, early}
{war, force, army}
{area, part, region}
{city, large, area}
{work, book, publish}
{disease, patient, cell}
{government, party, election}
{village, small, smallsup}

This article documents the history of Cameroon.

Contents

Early history

The earliest inhabitants of Cameroon were probably the Baka (Pygmies). They still inhabit the forests of the south and east provinces. Bantu speakers originating in the Cameroonian highlands were among the first groups to move out before other invaders. The Mandara kingdom in the Mandara Mountains was founded around 1500 and erected magnificent fortified structures, the purpose and exact history of which are still unresolved. The Aro Confederacy of Nigeria may have had presence in western (later called British) Cameroon due to migration in the 18th and 19th centuries.

During the late 1770s and the early 19th century, the Fulani, a pastoral Islamic people of the western Sahel, conquered most of what is now northern Cameroon, subjugating or displacing its largely non-Muslim inhabitants.

Although the Portuguese arrived on Cameroon's doorstep in the 16th century, malaria prevented significant European settlement and conquest of the interior until the late 1870s, when large supplies of the malaria suppressant, quinine, became available. The early European presence in Cameroon was primarily devoted to coastal trade and the acquisition of slaves. The northern part of Cameroon was an important part of the Muslim slave trade network. The slave trade was largely suppressed by the mid-19th century. Christian missions established a presence in the late 19th century and continue to play a role in Cameroonian life.

Colonization

Beginning on July 5, 1884, all of present-day Cameroon and parts of several of its neighbours became a German colony, Kamerun, with a capital first at Buea and later at Yaoundé.

The Imperial German government made substantial investments in the infrastructure of Cameroon, including the extensive railways, such as the 160-metre single-span railway bridge on the Sanaga South branch. Hospitals were opened all over the colony, including two major hospitals at Douala, one of which specialised in tropical diseases (the Germans had discovered the 1912, wrote in an official report in 1919 that the population of Kamerun had increased significantly. However, the indigenous peoples proved reluctant to work on these projects, so the Germans instigated a harsh and unpopular system of forced labour.[1] In fact, Jesko von Puttkamer was relieved of duty as governor of the colony due to his untoward actions toward the native Cameroonians.[2] In 1911 at the Treaty of Fez after the Agadir Crisis, France ceded a nearly 300,000 km² portion of the territory of French Equatorial Africa to Kamerun which became Neukamerun, while Germany ceded a smaller area in the north in present day Chad to France.

Full article ▸

related documents
Mashantucket Pequot Tribe
Cheyenne
History of Vanuatu
Apulia
History of Cyprus
Carib
Muckleshoot
Indies
Zhou Dynasty
History of Jamaica
East Coast of the United States
Ethnic groups in Chinese history
Portuguese colonization of the Americas
Cape Colony
Historical capitals of China
Shang Dynasty
Antofagasta Region
Buryats
Blackfeet
Danish colonization of the Americas
Spice Islands
Twa
Guadeloupe
West Timor
History of Australia
Caucasus
West African Vodun
Demographics of Macau
Demographics of French Polynesia
Demographics of Palau