Sir Matthew Nathan

Sir Matthew Nathan had recently dealth with some difficult issues in Sierra Leone and so had been moved to Gold Coast to deal with a growing difficulty with the Asante. He refrained from extracting tribute from the reconquered states, but he did not restore the exiled Asantehene. He restructured Asante and the southern colony into provinces and districts under commissioners and stipended chiefs, as a measure of decentralization, and kept to direct military rule in the northern protectorate. Relations with commercial and mining representatives were improved by gold claims registration and completion of a railway to Kumasi, but Nathan encountered Aborigines' Rights Protection Society opposition to land purchases and destooling chiefs.

Appreciated by the Colonial Office for his unflappable way of dealing with difficult issues he was promoted to Governor of Hong Kong. Image Courtesy of National Portrait Gallery

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by Stephen Luscombe