British East Africa


British East Africa

British East Africa was an area of East Africa controlled by the British in the late 19th century, which became a protectorate covering roughly the area of present-day Kenya. It grew out of British commercial interests in the area in the 1880s and lasted until 1920, when it became the colony of Kenya.

European missionaries began settling in the area from Mombasa to Mount Kilimanjaro in the 1840s, nominally under the protection of the Sultan of Zanzibar. In 1886 the British government encouraged William Mackinnon, who already had an agreement with the Sultan and whose shipping company traded extensively in East Africa, to establish British influence in the region. He formed a British East Africa Association which led to the Imperial British East Africa Company being chartered in 1888. It administered about convert|150|mi|km of coastline stretching from the river Tana via Mombasa to German East Africa which were leased from the Sultan. The British "sphere of influence", agreed at the Berlin conference of 1885, extended up the coast and inland across the future Kenya, and after 1890 included Uganda as well.

However, the company began to fail, and on 1 July 1895 the British government proclaimed a protectorate, and in 1902 made the Uganda territory part of the protectorate also. In 1902, the East Africa Syndicate received a grant of convert|500|sqmi|km2 in order to promote white settlement in the Highlands. The capital was shifted from Mombasa to Nairobi in 1905, and on 23 July 1920 the protectorate became the Kenya Colony.

Colonization

In April 1902, the first application for land in British East Africa was made by the East Africa Syndicate - a company in which financiers belonging to the British South Africa Company were interested - which sought a grant of 500 m²., and this was followed by other applications for considerable areas, including a large Jewish settlement. In April 1903, Major Frederick Russell Burnham, the famous American scout and then a Director of the East African Syndicate, sent an expedition conisting of John Weston Brooke, John Charles Blick, Mr. Bittlebank, and Mr. Brown, to assess the mineral wealth of the region. The party, known as the "Four B.'s", traveled from Nairobi via Mount Elgon northwards to the western shores of Lake Rudolph, experiencing plenty of privations from want of water, and of the danger from encounters with the Masai. [Fergusson, W.N. (1911). "Adventure, Sport and Travel on the Tibetan Steppes", p. preface. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York] With the arrival in 1903 of hundreds of prospective settlers, chiefly from South Africa, questions were raised concerning the preservation for the Masai of their rights of pasturage, and the decision was made to entertain no more applications for large areas of land.

In the carrying out of this policy of colonization a dispute arose between Sir Charles Eliot, then Commissioner of British East Africa, and Lord Lansdowne, the British Foreign Secretary. Lansdowne, believing himself bound by pledges given to the East Africa Syndicate, decided that they should be granted the lease of the 500 m². they had applied for; but after consulting officials of the protectorate then in London, he refused Eliot permission to conclude leases for 50 m². each to two applicants from South Africa. Eliot thereupon resigned his post, and in a public telegram to the prime minister, dated Mombasa, the 21st of June 1904, gave as his reason:- "Lord Lansdowne ordered me to refuse grants of land to certain. private persons while giving a monopoly of land on unduly advantageous terms to the East Africa Syndicate. I have refused to execute these instructions, which I consider unjust. and impolitic." On the day Sir Charles sent this telegram the appointment of Sir Donald William Stewart, the chief commissioner of Ashanti (Ghana), to succeed him was announced.

Stamps and postal history of British East Africa

The territory had its own mail system during the 1890s; see Postage stamps and postal history of British East Africa for further details.

ources

* [http://www.aim25.ac.uk/cgi-bin/search2?coll_id=149&inst_id=19 Sir William Mackinnon]
*"Oxford Dictionary of National Biography"

ee also

* Sir Charles Eliot
*Colonial Heads of Kenya
*East Africa Protectorate
* East African Campaign (World War I)

References

Further reading

*John S. Galbraith, " Mackinnon and East Africa 1878-1895" (Cambridge 1972)
* [http://unimaps.com/kenya1901/index.html Map of British East Africa in 1901]
* [http://purl.pt/787/1/index.html "A map of part of Eastern Africa, prepared by authority of the Imperial British East Africa Company", 1889]
* [http://www.1911encyclopedia.org/British 1911 Encyclopedia]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • British East Africa — a comprehensive term for the former British territories of Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania. * * * Territory under former British control, Africa. British penetration of the area began at Zanzibar in the late 19th century. In 1888 the British East… …   Universalium

  • British East Africa — noun the former British territories of eastern Africa, including Kenya, Tanganyika, Uganda, and Zanzibar • Hypernyms: ↑district, ↑territory, ↑territorial dominion, ↑dominion • Member Holonyms: ↑British Empire * * * a comprehensive term for the… …   Useful english dictionary

  • British East Africa — geographical name 1. see Kenya 2. the former British dependencies in E Africa: Kenya, Uganda, Zanzibar, & Tanganyika …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • British East Africa — Brit′ish East Af′rica n. geg the former British territories of Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania …   From formal English to slang

  • Imperial British East Africa Company — The Imperial British East Africa Company (IBEAC) was the administrator of British East Africa, which was the forerunner of the East Africa Protectorate, later Kenya. The IBEAC was a commercial association founded to develop African trade in the… …   Wikipedia

  • Postage stamps and postal history of British East Africa — The early missionaries in British East Africa sent letters by runner to forwarding agents at Zanzibar. Post offices opened at Mombasa and Lamu in 1890, and after some initial surcharges of British postage stamps with values of 1/2, 1, and 4 annas …   Wikipedia

  • Imperial British East Africa Company — Von der Imperial British East Africa Company ausgestellte Briefmarke, 1890 Die Imperial British East Africa Company (IBEA) war ein kommerzielles britisches Unternehmen, das von 1888 bis 1895 Britisch Ostafrika verwaltete und damit den Vorläufer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • East Africa — legend|#00f000|Geographic East Africa, including the UN subregion and East African CommunityEast Africa is the easternmost region of the African continent. Geopolitically, the UN definition of Eastern (not East) Africa for the collection of… …   Wikipedia

  • East Africa Protectorate — Infobox Former Country native name = conventional long name = East Africa Protectorate common name = East Africa Protectorate| continent = Africa region = country = era = status = Protectorate status text= empire = British Empire government type …   Wikipedia

  • East Africa Protectorate — Flagge von Britisch Ostafrika und der nachfolgenden Kolonie Britisch Ostafrika (englisch: British East Africa) war ab 1895 ein britisches Protektorat, das größtenteils auf dem Areal des heutigen Kenia lag. Das Areal wird geschätzt auf 700,000 km² …   Deutsch Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.