Black People : West and West Central African contributions to the world

Knowledge Seed

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Feb 22, 2008
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This is sort of a follow up on my last thread. I really want to look zero in on some of the accomplishments of those people that make up the ancestry of what we now call African Americans.

I'm a firm believer that we don't have to look very far to find the greatness that is African American ancestry.

Let's look at the Mande people, for example. They are a very large group that is more so known for their subgroups(Mende, Bambara, etc). They made up nearly a quarter (24%) of the slaves who arrived on US shores. The Mande produce two global , historical figures: Sundiata Keita and Mansa Musa.

Besides founding the Songhai Empire, Keita's life was the basis for Disney's legendary Lion King movie.

Mansa Musa is regarded as one of the greatest rulers of all time. Not only did he bring the first global, modern university to the world (University of Timbuktu), Forbes magazine has recently announced that, adjusted for inflation, he is the richest person of all time(and he was very generous with his wealth).
 
The Bakongo represented about a quarter of the people who arrived in the US destined for a life of slavery. They created one of the largest kingdoms in history, the Kingdom of Kongo which encompassed what is now the Republic of Angola, The Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo-Brazzaville.

The 6th king of Kongo, Alfonso I, was possibly the first king in all of West Africa (and West Central Africa, as well) to convert to Christianity. His attempts to spread Christianity throughout his kingdom were usually unsuccessful amongst the general populous, but he is remembered for being the only African king to actively oppose the slave trade.
 
The only African "king," perhaps, but Queen Nzinga of Angola not only waged war on the invading enslavers, she liberated POWs on their march to the sea, giving them the option of returning to their villages or joining her army. There is no royal figure of greater stature when it comes to fighting the good fight against Europe/America than the warrior queen, Nzinga.
 
The Voyage from Ndongo

Far from romanticizing Africans who participated in slave trading....


Between 1618 and 1620, thousands of Africans were enslaved during the war between King Alvaro III of Congo and his uncles, and sold into slavery. There was also the war between the Portuguese leader Endes de Vascondes and a band of marauding mercenary soldiers called Imbangala, against the Kingdom of Ndongo.The Portuguese were sitting back watching and in 1618 they decided that this region of Africa was ripe for the taking. So they supplied the Imbangala with guns to attack the African villages including the village of Ndongo in the Angola region. These were the same villages where they had taught Christianity.

http://project1619.org/2.html
 
The Voyage from Ndongo

Far from romanticizing Africans who participated in slave trading....


Between 1618 and 1620, thousands of Africans were enslaved during the war between King Alvaro III of Congo and his uncles, and sold into slavery. There was also the war between the Portuguese leader Endes de Vascondes and a band of marauding mercenary soldiers called Imbangala, against the Kingdom of Ndongo.The Portuguese were sitting back watching and in 1618 they decided that this region of Africa was ripe for the taking. So they supplied the Imbangala with guns to attack the African villages including the village of Ndongo in the Angola region. These were the same villages where they had taught Christianity.

http://project1619.org/2.html

Ndongo continued to suffer attacks from Portuguese forces, and in 1624 Queen Njinga Mbandi (also known as Nzinga) took over as ruler of that country. She continued the war unsuccessfully against Portugal and was forced to flee the country in 1626 and then again in 1629. During her second flight Njinga entered Matamba and her forces routed the army of Matamba's ruler, Queen Mwongo Matamba, capturing her and taking her prisoner. From at least 1631 onward, Njinga made Matamba her capital, joining it to the Kingdom of Ndongo.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_Matamba
 

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