The Dutch Gold Coast
or Dutch Guinea
, officially Dutch possessions on the Coast of Guinea
: Nederlandse Bezittingen ter Kuste van Guinea
) was a portion of coastal West Africa that was gradually colonized by the Dutch
, beginning in 1598. The colony became the most important Dutch colony in West Africa after Fort Elmina was captured
from the Portuguese in 1637, but fell into disarray after the abolition of slave trade in the early 19th century. On 6 April 1872, the Dutch Gold Coast was, in accordance with the Anglo-Dutch Treaties of 1870-1871
, ceremonially ceded to the United Kingdom.
The Portuguese were the first Europeans to arrive in contemporary Ghana
. By 1471, they had reached the area that was to become known as the Gold Coast because it was an important source of gold. The Portuguese interest in trading for gold, ivory, and pepper so increased that in 1482 the Portuguese built their first permanent trading post on the western coast of present-day Ghana. This fortress, a trade castle called São Jorge da Mina
(later called Elmina Castle
), was constructed to protect Portuguese trade from European competitors, and after frequent rebuildings and modifications, still stands.
The Portuguese position on the Gold Coast remained secure for over a century. During that time, Lisbon
sought to monopolize all trade in the... Read More