Colonialism in the congo
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Colonialism in the Congo. Belgium and King Leopold. Establishing Military Control. King Leopold Claimed the area after the Berlin Conference and said that he was using is own wealth to colonize it. But in reality he was borrowing from the Belgian state. Named the area the Congo Free State.

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Colonialism in the Congo

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Colonialism in the congo

Colonialism in the Congo

Belgium and King Leopold


Establishing military control

Establishing Military Control

  • King Leopold

    • Claimed the area after the Berlin Conference and said that he was using is own wealth to colonize it.

    • But in reality he was borrowing from the Belgian state.

  • Named the area the Congo Free State.

  • July 1, 1885 – He gave the state the authority to take “vacant” land from the inhabitants that were not “effectively using” it.

  • He encountered a lot of resistance, so in 1888 he establish the Force Publique, which was his army (the largest in Africa).

    • It consisted of European officers and African soldiers (often slaves).


Establishing economic control

Establishing Economic Control

  • Convened an anti-slavery conference in order convince the other countries present that he need to be able to charge import and export taxes to raise funds to end the slave trade.

  • These funds actually went to forcing the Congolese to work for him.

  • He then make a law that stated the people of the Congo could only sell their products (ivory and rubber) to the state, making it possible for the state to control all trade and the income that the Congolese received.

  • Taxed the people in rubber and if they couldn’t provide enough, they killed them or cut off their hands. They also took their wives hostage.


Edmond dene morel

Edmond Dene Morel

  • He discovered that King Leopold was not running a state of free trade, but was entirely controlling the economy.

  • He noticed that none of the imports to the country would benefit an economy. They were all military equipment.

  • He publicized his findings and gained support from European citizens and leaders.


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