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 Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland

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PostSubject: Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland   Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:03 am

In the 1880s, the British arrived with Cecil Rhodes's British South Africa Company. In 1898, the name Southern Rhodesia was adopted.[8] In 1888, British colonialist Cecil Rhodes obtained a concession for mining rights from King Lobengula of the Ndebele peoples.[9] Cecil Rhodes presented this concession to persuade the government of the United Kingdom to grant a royal charter to his British South Africa Company (BSAC) over Matabeleland, and its subject states such as Mashonaland.[10]

Rhodes used this document in 1890 to justify sending the Pioneer Column, a group of white settlers protected by well-armed British South Africa Police (BSAP) through Matabeleland and into Shona territory to establish Fort Salisbury (now Harare). In 1893-94, with the help of their new maxim guns the BSAP would go on to defeat the Ndebele in the First Matabele War, a war which also resulted in the death of King Lobengula. Rhodes sought permission to negotiate similar concessions covering all territory between the Limpopo River and Lake Tanganyika, then known as 'Zambesia'.[10]

In accordance with the terms of aforementioned concessions and treaties,[10] Cecil Rhodes promoted the colonisation of the region's land, with British control over labour as well as precious metals and other mineral resources.[11] In 1895 the BSAC adopted the name 'Rhodesia' for the territory of Zambesia, in honour of Cecil Rhodes. In 1898 'Southern Rhodesia' became the official denotation for the region south of the Zambezi,[12] which later became Zimbabwe. The region to the north was administered separately by the BSAC and later named Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia).

Shortly after the disastrous Jameson Raid of the BSAP into the South African Republic, the Ndebele were led by their spiritual leader Mlimo against the white colonials and thus began the Second Matabele War (1896-97). The Shona also staged unsuccessful revolts (known as Chimurenga) against encroachment upon their lands, by clients of BSAC and Cecil Rhodes in 1896 and 1897.[13] Following the failed insurrections of 1896–97 the Ndebele and Shona groups became subject to Rhodes's administration thus precipitating European settlement en masse which led to land distribution disproportionately favouring Europeans, displacing the Shona, Ndebele, and other indigenous peoples.

Southern Rhodesia became a self-governing British colony in October 1923, subsequent to a 1922 referendum. Rhodesians served on behalf of the United Kingdom during World War II, mainly in the East African Campaign against Axis forces in Italian East Africa.

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