The World at War

UBANGI - SHARI 1870 -1960


1870German botanist Georg August Schweinfurth discovers the Welle River. Schweinfurth believes it to be part of the Chad system.
1877Sulieman ben Ziber, successor to his father who is held in Cairo, revolts against the Egyptians causing the Zandé sultans break ranks with him.
1879Rabah leaves Sulieman, who submits to the Sudanese authorities, and settles in the Dar Fertit.
1882–1883 Baltic German explorer Wilhelm Junker follows the Welle River to its confluence with the Mbomu establishing that it belongs to the Congo system.
1882Rabah establishes his capital at the springs of Gribingui.
1884April 20 Belgians Alphonse Vangele and Captain Hanssens, agents of King Leopold’s Congo Free State, enter the Ubangi country.
July 7 English missionary George Grenfell departs Leopoldville aboard the steamer Peace to explore the upper Congo where he discovers the mouth of the Ubangi.
1885January George Grenfell leaves Leopoldville for a return to the Ubangi and reaches the rapids of the Bangui River.
February 5 A Franco Belgian Convention establishes the border between their respective spheres of influence in the Licona Nkoundja region.
March 6 Alphonse Vangele reveals the extent of the Ubangi’s course to French administrators Charles de Chavannes and Albert Dolisie.
May 16 Albert Dolisie establishes a post at Nkoundjia.
Rabah attacks the Mandjia at Kaga Kazangba. The Mandjia resist and defeat him.
1886October 20 Alphonse Vangele reaches the rapids of the Bangui but can go no further.
1887April 29 A Convention between France and the Congo Free State on the northern border of the Congo acknowledges French rights on the northern course of the Ubangi.
July 29 Albert Dolisie is attacked by the Bondjo on the heights of Modzaka while exploring the Ubangi.
August Albert Dolisie reaches the rapids of the Bangui.
Dunod explores the Mpoko basin.
September 12 Albert Dolisie holds the site of the Modzaka post.
November 21 Alphonse Vangele’s second expedition conquers the rapids of the Bangui and reaches Satema (Mobaye).
December 2 Albert Dolisie makes a second reconnaissance of the Bangui rapids.
December 31 Alphonse Vangele reaches the confluence of the Ouellé and the Mbomou.
1888Rabah decides to stay in the Chari country rather than return to the Nile.
February 13 The Vangele expediton returns to Leopoldville.
March The French post of Liranga is established at the confluence of the Ubangi and the Congo.
Albert Veitstroffer surveys the Ubangi from Modzaka to Bangui during low water season.
1889Rabah raids the Valley of the Aouk.
June 25 Alphonse Vangele establishes the post of Zongo and later that of Mokoangay.
June 26 Albert Dolisie and Alfred Uzac establish a post at point 6 miles below the first rapids of the Ubangi. Dolisie names the post Bangui from the Bobangui word for rapids.
During the Year Alphonse Vangele identifies the Ubangi as Georg Schweinfurth's Welle.
1890Rabah initiates a coup d'Etat in Dar el Kouti. He forces Sultan Kober to abdicate and replaces him with his nephew Mohammed el Senoussi.
Alphonse Vangele founds the Yakoma post at the confluence of the Ouelle and the Mbomou.
June 14 Alphonse Vangele signs a treaty with the Bangassou.
August 23 A French expedition under Paul Crampel departs Brazzaville at 8 a.m. aboard the gunboat Ubangi bound for Bangui. The party consists of Crampel, six associates, 25 Senegalese riflemen and 30 porters. The Ubangi tows for large canoes loaded with trade goods.
September 25 The Crampel expedition arrives at Bangui. Crampel describes it as, “a post like all the others; a poor straw bed for three Europeans, two huts for the Blacks, all even with the edge of the river. Behind the buildings a clearing stretches for 50 to 199 meters. The forest rises a bit and covers a small hill. On the opposite bank is the Belgian post at Zones. The building walls are made of mud and the station is more pleasant, cleaner than Bangui.”
October 3 Paul Crampel leaves Bangui with Monsieur Lauzière, station chief Fondère and 35 men to scout the paths to the north.
October 13 The Crampel expedition makes its base camp among the N’Dris near Biri N’goma. Crampel prefers the N’Dris to the tribes living along the Ubangi who he considers lazy and prone to cannibalism. He further remarks on the difficulty in recruiting porters, having only 85 of them for 350 loads.
November 13 The French from Bangui take reprisals against the Bouzerou amd the Sabanga.
December Rabah departs Velad el Kouti after the having installed Mohammed Senoussi.
December 19 Paul Crampel’s advance guard under Biscarrat battles the Langbassi.
December 31 Paul Crampel departs Bangui to rejoin his advance guard at Bembé and Makobou.
1891February 13 Paul Crampel and the main body of his party reaches Châ.
February 19 The Fourneau expedition departs Brazzaville to explorer the Upper Sangha.
April 8 Paul Crampel, who was moving towards Chad, is killed in an ambush by Senoussistes.
April 13 An expedition led by Jan Dybowski, a naturalized French citizen born in Poland, lands at Loango.
May 12 The Fourneau expedition engages in fighting with the Bayanda who have united under the leadership of Chief Bafio.
June 17 The first ranks of the Dybowski expedition arrive in Brazzaville after a month long journey on the Loango.
July 6 The Gaillard expedition arrives in Bangui to survey the right bank of the Ubangi.
August 14 Gaillard founds the Mobaye post.
August 15 Doctor Noel Ballay is shipwrecked in the Satema rapids.
September 7 Gaillard founds the post at Abiras across from Yakoma.
September 18-25 Nebout explores the Mpoko.
September 24 – early October
Brunnache and Briquez explore the Ombella and the Kémo.
October 4 Jan Dybowski reaches Bangui and leaves three weeks later for the north.
October 9 The steamer Peace, carrying a group of missionaries, stops at Bangui.
November 14 The Dybowski expedition reaches Balao.
November 15 - 19 The Dybowski expedition camps among the Dakpa of Chief Zouli at Zamvouza.
December 27 Jan Dybowski, Brunache and Nebout return to Bangui.
December 13 Albert Dolisie issues a directive establishing a, “Modzaka-Mbaye zone”.
1891-1894 A expedition sent by King Leopold visits the Mbomou and the Upper Kotto to establish itself in defiance of the 1887 convention. Treaties of protection are signed with the sultans Bandia, Bangassou and Rafai and the Zandé sultan Zémio.
1892January 1 Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza appoints Victor Liotard commandant of Upper Ubangi.
January 10 The Maistre expedition departs Bordeaux for the Ubangi.
January 15 Administrator Largeau arrives in Bangui.
February 1 - 4 Jan Dybowski leaves Bangui for the Ouadda post.
February 6 The Maistre mission lands at Loango.
February 11 – March 3 Jan Dybowski makes a reconnaissance of the Togbos of the Kémo and establishes a post there where Brunche remains until April 7.
March 30 Victor Liotard arrives in Bangui as Commandant of the Upper Ubangi region.
July 1 The Ndris Ali makes contact with the Maistre mission on the Tomi.
July 3 Ndris Ali signs a treaty with Ndris Chief Azamgouanda.
July 18 The Maistre expedition begins fighting with the Mandjia.
August 22 Casimir Leon Maistre makes peaces with the Mandjia.
September 1 Casimir Leon Maistre signs a treaty with Chief Aouaka Yagoussou.
September 1 – 10 The Maistre mission crosses the Gribingui.
November 3 The Uzès expedition arrives at Bangui.
1893Rabah seizes Baguirmi.
January 11 The Uzès Expedition reaches Abiras.
January 13 Monsignor Prosper Augouard, Vicar Apostolic of the Congo, leaves Brazzaville for the Upper Ubangi .
February 4 – 8 The Uzès expedition routs the Ngbougou.
February 15 Monsignor Prosper Augouard chooses the site of the future Saint Paul mission.
March 16 French and Congo Free State soldiers clash at Bangassou.
June 9 Casimir Leon Maistre holds a conference at the Geographic Society of Paris.
June 15 A Franco – German accord on the Congo – Cameroon border is signed.
1894February 13 Monsignor Prosper Augouard founds Saint Paul’s Mission Bangui.
March 15 A Franco-German convention establishes the border between the French Congo and Cameroon.
July 14 The French colony of Upper Ubangi is established.
August 28 An accord between France and Leopold, King of the Belgians, establishes the northern boundary of the Congo Free State in the Valley of Mbomou.
1896La Compagnie Française du haut Congo operated by the Tréchot brothers establishes a post at Bonga near the mouth of the River Sangha.
March – September Goujon, the administrator of Nola, asisted by about 50 Senegalese militiamen, arms between 200 and 6,000 men then sets off to round up the Baya chiefs he suspects of furnishing soldiers to the Fulbé. Goujon occupies the market town of Koundé, which houses an important gathering of Hausa traders, to crush the resistance of the Fulbé chief of Ngaoundéré. The Hausa and their ivory are forcibly transferred to Carnot on the Mambéré River (a tributary of the Sangha), in hopes of developing a new trading pattern to the south, along the Sangha to the Congo.
1898The colony of Upper Ubangi is divided among 17 commercial concessionaries who are granted a 30 year monopoly to exploit the products of the land rather than a monopoly on trade in keeping with the Berlin Accords which guarantee free trade in the region. The concessionaires pay an annual royalty to the colony based on a percentage of their profit, are required to build customs houses, construct telegraph lines, maintain a certain number of steamers on their river system and plant at least 150 rubber trees per ton exported. Any lands developed under their care become property of the concessionaire at the end of the contract. The largest concessionare, La Sociéte des Sultanats du Haut-Oubangui, is awarded a 140,000 square kilometer territory.
July 14 Bastille Day in Koundé is marked with a parade. Baboua, Chief of the Baya who surrendered to administrator Goujon, is marched before 80 chiefs of the country to make an impression.
1899March 21 A Franco-British convention cedes Bahr el Ghazal, then occupied by the French of Ubangi, to Anglo-Egyptian Sudan and places Wadai in the French sphere of influence.
1900April 22 Rabah is routed by three French expeditions coming from Algiers, Saint Louis and Bangui. Rabah is killed in the course of a battle at Koussiri. His empire dissolves in the months that follow.
1902The natives of the lower Sangha rebel against the rule of the concessionaires. Agents of La Compagnie des Produits de la Sangha are attacked at their post in Ndoki as is the agent of La Compagnie de la Sangha Ndoka at Ikelemba further down stream, the agent of La Société de l’Afrique Française at Pembé and that of the Compagnie Franco-Congolaise at Mboko. The insurgents seize 30 rifles and 2,000 cartridges at Ikelemba, rifles and 3,000 cartridges at Pembé and 40 rifles at Ndoki.
1903December 29 The colony of Upper Ubangi is renamed Ubangi Shari.
1904April An administrator in Bangui sends a clerk from the native affairs bureau to collect taxes in the Mongoumba region. The clerk, accompanies by an agent of the concessionary, takes 58 women and 10 children hostages from two poorly paying villages to Bangui where they are thrown in a dimly lighted, poorly ventilated cellar and starved. Only 13 women and 8 children are still alive by the time a young doctor secures their release. The case against the responsible administrator is withdrawn and his transfer from the hated backwater of Bangui to a desirable post in Brazzaville is secured.
July 1 Ubangi Shari is established as a separate colony apart from the French Congo.
1905Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza heads commission charged with investigating the abuse of the natives by concessionaires. The Commission reports that the most serious cases have occurred in the region between the Upper Sangha and the Upper Ubangi owing to collusion between company agents and colonial administrators. The report continues condemning the practice of the Compagnie de la Lobaye in the territories of Ouham Nana where about fifty women and children were held hostage to force the men to collect rubber and died of starvation. The Government refuses to publish the report.
October 24 Treuil, an agent of La Société de la Sangha Equatoriale is sentenced to three years in prison for abuse of the natives.
1906February 11 The territory of Ubangi Shari and the military territory of Chad are merged into a single territory, the colony of Ubangi Shari – Chad with Chad under a regional commander at Fort Lamy subordinate to the Governor of Ubangi Shari at Fort de Possel.
December 11 Bangui is declared the capital of Ubangi Shari.
During the Year The European population of Ubangi Shari numbers 148.
1907Father Cotel edits a French-Banda and Banda-French dictionary and an essay on grammar.
La Compagnie de la Ngoko-Sangha, concessionaire on the River Sangha along the border of German Cameroon, employs some 20 agents assisted by local traders. The company has established posts at Ouesso, Ngali on the Ngoko, Ngoila and Sembé, the head of navigation on the Koudou. It produces a little rubber but specializes in the sale of weapons and ammunition having traded over 10,000 rifles, 200,000 cartridges and 60 tons of gunpowder in exchange for rubber during the preceding six years.
An investigation into abuses in the Mpoko concession above Bangui uncovers the murders of 750 natives and the probable murder of 750 others.
1908An agent of La Compagnie de la Ngoko-Sangha is ambushed between Souanké and Sembé and his corpse mutilated. All communications cease and tensions increase in the Koudou and Sembé basin.
Felix Eboué, future Free French Governor General of Equatorial Africa, graduates from the School of Colonial Administration and is posted to Ubangi Shari.
1909The uprising in the Koudou and Sembé basin is crushed.
1910January 15 French Equatorial Africa is established encompassing the colonies of Gabon, Middle Congo, Ubangi Shari and Chad.
The army of El Senoussi takes Ouanda Djalle. The Youlou population flees the area.
1911January 11 El Senoussi is killed during his arrest by Lieutenant Grundfelder.
November 4 France cedes the Lobaye basin to German Cameroon in exchange for a free hand in Morocco.
During the Year Monsignor Calloc’h publishes a French-Sango and Sango-French Vocabulary, Sango being the language of commerce in Ubangi Shari.
1914August 12 – December France reoccupies the Lobaye basin and sends troops into German Cameroon.
1920March 17 Ubangi Shari and Chad are formed into separate colonies.
1921December 15 René Maran is awarded the Goncourt Prize for his book Batouala in which he denounces the abuses of French colonialism in Africa. Batouala is banned in Equatorial Africa and Maran is forced to resign his post as colonial administrator in Ubangi Shari.
1922Stamps of Ubangi Shari replace those of Ubangi Shari – Chad.
1923Ubangi Shari’s border with Anglo-Egyptian Sudan is demarcated.
1926André Gide arrives in Bangui where he uncovers the Lobaye and the Upper Sangha scandals which he later describes in his book Voyage au Congo.
Chief Samba Ngotto denounces the massacres of Botembélé.
The European population of Ubangi Shari numbers 327.
1928 -1930 Karinou, nom de guerre Kongowara, leads a general uprising of the Baya and other tribes in the region of the Upper Sangha, the Shari and as far as the borders of Cameroon and the Congo.
December 11 Karinou is killed by the colonial army.
1929June 24 Berandjoko, who has been in rebellion against the colonial authorities since 1906, is captured and killed in the forest of the Lobaye.
During the Year Albert Londres and Robert Poulaine uncover the scandals of the Congo-Ocean railway construction during which numerous workers from Ubangi Shari died.
1930Father Marcel Gérard publishes Sango, The Commercial Language of Ubangi Shari.
1931Felix Eboué’s book, Les Peuples de l'Oubangui-Chari (The People of Ubangi-Shari) is published.
1938Barthélemy Boganda becomes the first native of Ubangi Shari to be ordained as a Catholic priest.
1940July 20 A Gaullist coup attempt is defeated in Bangui.
August 28 Governor Pierre de Saint Mart receives telegram informing him that Colonel Edgard de Larminat has taken control of the administration in Brazzaville for Free France. The Governor declares Ubangi-Shari’s rally to Free France. The Vichy officers commanding the local garrison threaten a coup d’etat.
September 30 Ubangi Shari rallies to Free France after Colonel de Larminat arrives by plane with an offer to return Pro-Vichy officers to Dakar.
October 21 General De Gaulle visits Bangui.
During the Year Ubangi Shari’s first bank, a branch of the Banque Nationale pour le Commerce et l'Industrie-Afrique, opens in Bangui.
1945December 19 Governor General Bayardelle plan to partition French Equatorial Africa into three territories (Gabon-Middle Congo, the Islamic Region of Chad and the High River Countries with Bangui as their capital) is opposed by the Chamber of Commerce.
1946May 1 La Banque de l'Afrique Occidentale opens a branch in Bangui.
October 27 Ubangi Shari becomes an overseas territory of France.
November 10 Barthélemy Boganda is elected Deputy of Ubangi Shari to the French National Assembly.
1947March – December The territorial assembly of Ubangi Shari and the Grand Council of French Equatorial Africa are established.
1949September 28 Barthélemy Boganda founds the Movement for Social Evolution in Black Africa (MESAN).
1951January 10 Deputy Barthélemy Boganda and his wife are arrested after an incident in a local produce market in the Lobaye.
June 17 Barthélemy Boganda is reelected to the French National Assembly despite fierce opposition.
1952March 30 MESAN wins all the seats in the Territorial Assembly of Ubangi Shari.
1954April 30 – May 1 Demonstrations in Berberati turn violent. Deputy Barthélemy Boganda arrives on the scene and restores calm.
1956January 2 Barthélemy Boganda is reelected to the French National Assembly.
June 23 The Deffere Law opens the way to internal autonomy in the overseas territories.
November 18 Barthélemy Boganda is elected Mayor of Bangui.
1957February 4 The office of governor is replaced by that of High Commissioner.
May 17 The first Ubangi Shari government is formed under the leadership of Doctor Abel Goumba.
June 18 Barthélemy Boganda is elected President of the Grand Council of French Equatorial Africa.
1958September 28 Ubangi Shari votes 98.1% in favor of the Fifth Republic and continued membership in the French Community. Barthélemy Boganda recommends an independent republic composed of the French Equatorial African countries and a United States of Latin Africa.
November 2 Chad, Gabon and the French Congo reject Grand Council President Barthélemy Boganda’s call for the establishment of a Central African Republic comprised of the four territories of French Equatorial Africa, Cameroon and later extended from Ruanda Urundi to Angola. French Equatorial Africa is dissolved.
December 1 The autonomous Central African Republic is proclaimed. Its territory is limited to Ubangi Shari.
December 8 Barthélemy Boganda becomes Prime Minister of the Central African Republic.
1959February 16 The Territorial Assembly adopts a democratic constitution introduced by Barthélemy Boganda.
March 29 Barthélemy Boganda is killed in an airplane crash. Abel Goumba becomes interim Prime Minister of the Central African Republic.
May 5 David Dacko is elected Prime Minister of the Central African Republic.
1960August 13 The Central African Republic is declared independent by France. David Dacko becomes president.

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