The Benin massacre and expedition of 1897 were two disastrous events that left the kingdom of Benin ransacked, devastated and deprived of valuable artifacts, artworks, sons, daughters and a great king. The Benin massacre acted as a chain that pulled the “punitive expedition“, as it was called by the British, into existence. On January 4 1897, a fraction of Benin army killed a British officer, Consul Philips, alongside his men for his obstinacy to enter Benin when he was not welcomed. In retaliation, the British authorities sent about 1,200 troops to destroy Benin and punish its King. Below is a detailed account of the massacre and expedition.
It is worthy of note that Benin kingdom has existed from time immemorial and had thrived extensively as one of the most prosperous and mightiest kingdoms in West Africa. Benin kingdom traded slaves, ivory, pepper and palm oil with the Portuguese as early as 1485 and at the peak of its power, Benin influenced places as far as Akure and Owo in the western part of modern-day Nigeria. Continue reading Benin Massacre and Expedition of 1897→
In 1891, the Ijebu tribe, dwelling between 50 and 60 miles north-east of Lagos on the Magbon river, set a blockade on the trade route from the interior into Lagos, which was a crown colony, and charged customs dues which served as their income. The Awujale, the traditional ruler of Ijebu, closed down the Ejirin market, cutting off Lagos from a source of up-country trade.
The British government persuaded the Awujale several times to open the blockaded route but the Ijebu ruler remained adamant. However, Continue reading The British-Ijebu war of 1892 (The battle of Imagbon)→
The Adubi war, also known as “Ogun Adubi” and sometimes reffered to as the Egba Uprising, was a war that took place between June and August, 1918 as a result of the taxation system introduced by Continue reading Adubi War, Abeokuta 1918→
In March 1953, a member of Action Group (AG) in the House of Representatives, Chief Anthony Enahoro, moved a motion, requesting that Nigeria should be granted self government in 1956. Continue reading The Kano riot of 1953→
The “riots” or the war, led by women in the provinces of Calabar and Owerri in southeastern Nigeria in November and December of 1929, became known as the “Aba Women’s Riots of 1929” in British colonial history, or as the “Women’s War” in Igbo history. Thousands of Igbo women organized a massive revolt against the policies imposed by British colonial administrators in Continue reading Aba Women’s Riot (1929)→