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Section 2. The Middle Kingdoms. After A.D. 400, several large trading kingdoms arose in West Africa. Refugees (people who flee for safety) from Kush brought iron-smelting to the West. Ancient & Present Ghana. Ancient Ghana. Present Day Ghana. Ancient Ghana. Ancient Ghana.

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Section 2

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section 2

Section 2

The Middle Kingdoms

After A.D. 400, several large trading kingdoms arose in West Africa.

Refugees (people who flee for safety) from Kush brought iron-smelting to the West.


Ancient Ghana

Present Day


ancient ghana1
Ancient Ghana
  • Developed 400 miles NW of present day Ghana
  • Became trading nation
  • Most important goods: salt and gold
  • Founded A.D. 200
  • Began iron-smelting in A.D. 350
  • Leader is the “Ghana”
  • Warriors expanded boundaries and controlled trade
trade develops
Trade Develops
  • Ghana controls trade between north and south
  • Caravans paid in gold nuggets to use routes
  • Ghana rich in gold mines
  • Camel plays huge role introduced in 600s by Arabs
gold salt trade
Gold / Salt Trade
  • Salt from Taghaza (present day Algeria) (Arabs)
  • Gold from Wangara (S.W. Ghana)
  • Merchants used a method called silent barter
silent barter
Silent Barter
  • Merchants would travel to Wangara with salt and other goods; they would put goods down and beat a drum; then retreat
  • Gold miners would leave gold in place
If merchants were satisfied, they would take gold and leave
  • If not satisfied, they would retreat until gold miners brought more gold
Gold was then shipped to Europe and Asia for sale

What problems do you

see with foreign


  • Jealousy, fear and anger led to attacks – insignificant
  • 1076 A.D. – Muslims (Almoravid) attacked – weakened empire
  • 1235 – part of the Empire of Mali


geography of today s ghana
Geography of Today’s Ghana
  • About the size of Oregon
  • Tropical climate (around equator)
  • No natural harbors along 300 mile coast
  • Tropical swamps
Brush-covered plains
  • Humid rain-forests
  • 2/3 is savanna
  • 2 rivers: Black Volta & White Volta join to form Volta River which empties into Gulf of Guinea
  • 1670s – Osei Tutu
  • Kumasi – chief city
  • Military and trading empire
the golden stool
The Golden Stool
  • tells of the birth of the Ashanti kingdom
  • 1600s – meeting was held of tribal clans
  • Golden Stool was summoned down from heaven by the priest for Ashanti king, Osei Tutu I
  • sacred - contains the 'Sunsum' — spirit or soul of the Ashanti people
british invasion
British Invasion
  • 1823 -1896
  • Asanti finally were defeated in 1900
why did the british want to control ghana
Why did the British want to control Ghana?
  • Resources
  • Compete for world dominion
british control
British Control
  • By 1900, Present day Ghana was under “protection” of Great Britain
  • 1901: Ghana was part of Britain’s Gold Coast colony


  • British profited from trade of goods in Ghana
  • Colonial peoples began to resist and strike led by Kwame Nkrumah in 1947