European Forts

All along the Guinea coastline, Europeans scrambled to set up forts to protect their trading factories. Interestingly, these were not really set up to defend the Europeans from Africans, rather they were established in order to protect themselves from being attacked by sea by other European rivals attempting to get in on the lucrative West African trade opportunities. The top picture shows a Brandenburg fort (Brandenburg used a black cross on a white background), whilst those below show a variety of Dutch and English forts. The English forts are flying a Union Flag (not entirely clear from the images). Actually, the Union Flag was used by before the Act of Union in 1707.



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by Stephen Luscombe