History

History

About Tanzania

Early exploration

Most of the known history before the 19th century concerns the coastal area, although the interior has a number of important prehistoric sites, including the Olduvai Gorge. Trade between Arabia and the East African coast existed by the 1st century AD, and probably also with India. The coastal trading centres were mainly Arab settlements, and relations between the Arabs and their African neighbours appear to have been fairly friendly.

Arrival of Portuguese & French

After the arrival of the Portuguese in the late 15th century, the position of the Arabs was less and less important, but the Portuguese made little attempt to search interior. They lost their foothold in the 18th century. French interest in the slave trade revived the trade in 1776. For some time most of the slaves came from the Kilwa hinterland, and until the 19th century such contacts as existed between the coast and the interior were due mainly to African caravans from the interior.

Arabs and slave trade

In their constant search for slaves, Arab traders began to penetrate further into the interior, more particularly in the southeast toward Lake Nyasa. Farther north two merchants from India followed the tribal trade routes to reach the country of the Nyamwezi about 1825. Along this route ivory appears to have been as great an attraction as slaves, and Saīd bin Sulṭan himself, after the transfer of his capital from Muscat to Zanzibar, gave every encouragement to the Arabs to pursue these trading possibilities. Arabs pressed on to Lake Tanganyika in the early 1840s, and a number of Arabs made their homes there.

European explorers

The first Europeans to show an interest in Tanganyika in the 19th century were missionaries, Johann Ludwig Krapf and Johannes Rebmann, who in the late 1840s reached Kilimanjaro. The fellow missionary helped stimulate the interest of the British explorers Richard Burton and John Hanning Speke. They travelled from Bagamoyo to Lake Tanganyika in 1857–58, and Speke also saw Lake Victoria. This expedition was followed by Speke’s second journey, to justify the former’s claim that the Nile rose in Lake Victoria.

David Livingston

These primarily geographic explorations were followed by the activities of David Livingstone, who in 1866 set out on his last journey for Lake Nyasa. Livingstone’s object was to expose the horrors of the slave trade and, by opening up legitimate trade with the interior, to destroy the slave trade at its roots. Livingstone’s journey led to the later expeditions of H.M. Stanley. Later a number of missionary societies began to take an interest in East Africa after 1860.

German East Africa

Germany evaded the sultan of Zanzibar late in 1884 to land on the mainland. He made a number of “contracts” in the Usambara area by which several chiefs were said to have surrendered their territory to him. Peters’ activities were confirmed by Bismarck. By the Anglo-German Agreement of 1886 the sultan of Zanzibar’s vaguely substantiated claims to dominion on the mainland were limited to a 10-mile-wide coastal strip, and Britain and Germany divided the hinterland between them as spheres of influence, the region to the south becoming known as German East Africa. Following the example of the British to the north, the Germans obtained a lease of the coastal strip from the sultan in 1888, but their tactlessness and fear of commercial competition led to a Muslim rising in August 1888. The rebellion was put down only after the intervention of the imperial German government and with the assistance of the British navy.

German protectorate and railway

In 1891 German government declared a protectorate over its sphere of influence and over the coastal strip, where the company had bought out the sultan’s rights. The introduction of sisal from Florida in 1892 marked the beginning of the territory’s most valuable industry, which was encouraged by the development of a railway from the new capital of Dar es Salaam to Lake Tanganyika. This successfully encouraged the pioneer coffee-growing activities on the slopes of Kilimanjaro.

Maji Maji rising

The enforcement of German overlordship was strongly resisted, but control was established by the beginning of the 20th century. Almost at once came a reaction to German methods of administration, the outbreak of the Maji Maji rising in 1905. Later more money was invested in East Africa. A more liberal form of administration rapidly replaced the previous semi military system.

World War I

World War I put an end to all German experiments. Blockaded by the British navy, the country could neither export produce nor get help from Germany. The British advance into German territory continued steadily from 1916 until the whole country was eventually occupied. The effects of the war were disastrous; the administration and economy were completely disrupted. In these circumstances the Africans reverted to their old social systems.

Treaty of Versailles and World War II

Under the Treaty of Versailles (1919), Britain received a League of Nations mandate to administer the territory. In the 1930s, Tanganyika was afraid that it might he handed back to Germany in response to Hitler’s demands for overseas possessions. At the outbreak of World War II Tanganyika’s main task was to make itself as independent as possible of imported goods. Tanganyika’s main objective after the war was to ensure that its program for economic recovery and development should go ahead.

Postwar time

Constitutionally, the most important postwar development was the British government’s decision to place Tanganyika under UN trusteeship (1947). Britain was called upon to develop the political life of the territory. It started in the 1950s with the growth of the Tanganyika African National Union (TANU). In September 1960 a predominantly TANU government took office. The emergence of this party and its triumph over the political apathy of the people were largely due to the leadership of Julius Nyerere. Tanganyika became independent on Dec. 9, 1961, with Nyerere as its first prime minister.

History of Zanzibar

Probably its close connection with southern Arabia and the countries of Persian Gulf began before the Christian era. In 1498 famous Vasco da Gama visited Malindi, and in 1503 Zanzibar Island was attacked and made tributary by the Portuguese. It appears to have remained in that condition for about a quarter of a century. A Portuguese trading factory and an Augustinian mission were established on the site of the modern city of Zanzibar. A few Portuguese have settled as farmers in different parts of the island. In 1698 (except for a brief Portuguese reoccupation in 1728) Zanzibar and Pemba came under the domination of the Arab rulers of Oman. For more than a century those rulers left the government of Zanzibar to local governors. The first sultan to take up residence in Zanzibar was Sayyid Saīd bin Sultan, who after several short visits settled there soon after 1830 and extended his influence along the East African coast.

British protectorate

In 1890 what was left of the sultanate was proclaimed a British protectorate. Six years later the royal palace at Zanzibar was seized by Khalid, a son of Sultan Barghash, who proclaimed himself sultan. The British government disapproved, and the palace was bombarded by British warships. Khalid escaped to German consulate. In 1897 the slavery was finally abolished. In November 1960 the British Parliament approved a new constitution for Zanzibar, 3 years later Zanzibar achieved independence as a member of the Commonwealth. In January 1964 the Zanzibar government was overthrown by an internal revolution, and a republic was proclaimed. Although the revolution was carried out by only about 600 armed men, it had support from the African population. Thousands of Arabs were massacred in riots, and thousands more fled the island.

The United Republic

The Tanganyikan constitution was done in 1962, and Julius Nyerere became executive president of the Republic of Tanganyika. In 1963 TANU was declared the only legal party. Nyerere was re-elected again and again as the sole candidate for president. In April 1964 he made an agreement with President Karume of Zanzibar to establish the United Republicof Tanzania, with Nyerere hims

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