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Origin of the name "Ghana" - Gold Coast Administrators





Original geographic location of the Old Ghana Empire
Ghana is one of the earliest known Negro empires in recorded history It was first mentioned by an Arab geographer, Al-Fazari, in AD 773 in his book Al-Masudi, where he referred to it as "a Land of Gold".Ghana is also found on the first Islamic world map produced by a Persian geographer, Mohammed Khwarizmi, in the ninth/9'th Century. The Arab traveler Al-Bakri, writing in AD 1067, tells us that the name "Ghana" was the title of the Soninke kingdom called Aoukar. The title means "war chief". It was visiting Arabs and people  from other parts of the Sudanwho referred to the kingdom by the title of its kings; and by the ninth Century,The Wangara are a central element of a Soninke diaspora and go back for centuries in history, namely to the Soninke kingdom of Ghana.
They were known as Wakoré, who probably obtained royal trade privileges. Certain groups holding the imamates in key settlements such as the Sa(gha)nogo, Kamaghaté, Diaba(gha)té, Timité, Cissé- Haidara, Fofana and Bagayogo are of Soninke origin, but other people identify themselves with them claiming "Wangara" status. Certain identity markers remain stable over the centuries: long-distance trade in precious commodities, Moslem, scholars and imams; the ethnic groups identified with them do shift and are often not Mande but assimilated to their group identity aspiring to integration in the trade network: Bambara, Bobo, Senoufo, Songhay, Hausa, Gonja and others.
Note: The name "Ghana" was suggested by Dr. J.B. Danquah before 1957 Independence to be changed from British Protectorate of "Gold Coast" to Ghana.
The Ancient Ghana Empire AD 300 - 1067
Ghana (Wagadu), the earliest known empire of the western Sudan, first entered the historical consciousness of North Africa near the end of the eighth century but probably originated long before. The empire's legacy is still celebrated in the name of the Republic of Ghana; apart from this, however, modern-day and ancient Ghana share no direct historical connections. Despite early texts that discuss ancient Ghana, such as The Book of Routes and Kingdoms by the eleventh-century Andalusian geographer Abu cUbayd al-Bakri, it remains very much an enigma. Famous to North Africans as the "Land of Gold," Ghana was said to possess sophisticated methods of administration and taxation, large armies, and a monopoly over notoriously well-concealed golf mines. The king of the Soninke people who founded Ghana never fully embraced Islam but good relations with Muslim traders were fostered. Ghana's preeminence faded toward the end of the eleventh century, when its power was broken by a long struggle with the Almoravids led by Abdullah ibn Yasin. Ghana subsequently fell to the expanding Soso kingdom The Wangara are a central element of a Soninke diaspora and go back for centuries in history, namely to the Soninke kingdom of Ghana. They were known as Wakoré, who probably obtained royal trade privileges. Certain groups holding the imamates in key settlements such as the Sa(gha)nogo, Kamaghaté, Diaba(gha)té, Timité, Cissé- Haidara, Fofana and Bagayogo are of Soninke origin, but other people identify themselves with them claiming "Wangara" status. Certain identity markers remain stable over the centuries: long-distance trade in precious commodities, Moslem, scholars and imams; the ethnic groups identified with them do shift and are often not Mande but assimilated to their group identity aspiring to integration in the trade network: Bambara, Bobo, Senoufo, Songhay, Hausa, Gonja and others.
Ghana (Wagadu), the earliest known empire of the western Sudan, first entered the historical consciousness of North Africa near the end of the eighth century but probably originated long before. The empire's legacy is still celebrated in the name of the Republic of Ghana; apart from this, however, modern-day and ancient Ghana share no direct historical connections. Despite early texts that discuss ancient Ghana, such as The Book of Routes and Kingdoms by the eleventh-century Andalusian geographer Abu cUbayd al-Bakri, it remains very much an enigma. Famous to North Africans as the "Land of Gold," Ghana was said to possess sophisticated methods of administration and taxation, large armies, and a monopoly over notoriously well-concealed golf mines. The king of the Soninke people who founded Ghana never fully embraced Islam but good relations with Muslim traders were fostered. Ghana's preeminence faded toward the end of the eleventh century, when its power was broken by a long struggle with the Almoravids led by Abdullah ibn Yasin. Ghana subsequently fell to the expanding Soso kingdom
Aoukar was popularly known as "Ghana" It is not yet certain how and when Ghana was founded. But from Arab sources, particularly; the Tarikh as Sudan , it appears to have been founded by a Soninke dynasty between AD 300-400. The Ghana Kingdom was situated on the grassland north of headwaters of Senegal & Niger . It's capital, Kumbi Saleh, is said to have been found by Kaya Maghan, who is reputed to have overthrown the immigrant minority ruling class of "white"(Products of Intermarriages between Berber Settlers and Negro indigenous) about AD 770 and established a pure Soninke dynasty. By AD 1000 the Soninke kingdom had extended its territory west to the river Senegal , south to Bambuk region, and east to the Niger and north to the Berber town of Audoghast on the southern edge of the Sahara desert. By the middle of the eleventh century, when Ghana was at the zenith of its imperial expansion, it controlled the area covering modern states of Senegal, Mali and Mauritania - a territory of roughly 650 000 square kilometers with a population of several millions.
History Of The Land & People Of Ghana Before Independence

The present boundaries of Ghana, enclosing an area of about 240,000 km sq., and with  a population of about 18 million in 1998, were carved out in stages from nineteenth century, by foreign powers when they began spreading their sphere of influence in West Africa. Until the country's present frontiers took shape, what is today the Republic of Ghana comprised of many independent states and kingdoms. Through a number of "treaties" of "Friendship" and forced annexations, the independent states were merged as one territory under the British imperial rule. In 1874, after a long period of loose association with the people, the British formally proclaimed  as a colony the southern part of the country, from then on has been called the "Gold Coast" colony. Two years later, the British moved the headquarters from Cape Coast to Accra , which was since  remained the capital of the country. On 1'st January 1902, both Asante and Brong-Ahafo Regions  and what became the Northern territories were annexed by the British as a crown Colony and a   Protectorate Territory respectively. After World War I(1914-1918), the western portion of the  former Germany colony of Togo was ceded to the British under the mandate system of the  League of Nations . This territory later became known as the Trans-Volta Togo Thus, by  1920, the present frontiers of the country had taken complete shape. The main groups of the people of Ghana are distinguished largely by language and, to a lesser degree, by the political, social and other cultural institutions. The Akan constitute more than half the country's population. The Ga-Adangbe and the Ewe both inhabit the southern part of the country, while in the northern half of the country are the Mole-Dagbani, comprising the Mamprusi Mossi, Dagomba and Gonja. Other groups in the north include the Dagarti, Sisala, Kusasi, Lobi,  Konkomba and Nanumba.


 

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