‘Far from My Native Land, and Far from You’: Reimagining the British at Cape Coast Castle in the Nineteenth Century

  • Victoria Ellen Smith
Part of the African Histories and Modernities book series (AHAM)


This chapter focuses on how the British have imagined themselves at Cape Coast Castle through enduring justificatory narrative that marginalised the slave trade and colonial rule. It reflects on what continued to bring the British to Cape Coast after the slave trade, the realities that were projected to London by an increasingly autonomous merchant society, the dominance in Britain of celebratory narratives of abolition and how a useable rather than necessarily truthful history has endured. The 200th anniversary of the British abolition of the slave trade provided a crucial catalyst for major reconsiderations of British activities in West Africa. As a result, established myths of the British at Cape Coast Castle are now being renegotiated through the extension of knowledge, diversity of evidence and interdisciplinary perspectives. Within this milieu, literary and archival representations of the Castle are employed to reimagine the British cultural history of this fortified trading warehouse.


Archival Documents

  1. Private collection of James Anquandah (JA): MS Anquandah, James, Cape Coast Castle and Fort St. Jago, Elmina, Ghana: archaeological reconnaissance survey phase two, report by Prof. James R. Anquandah for Midwest University Consortium for International Activities (MUCIA) Ghana (1997).Google Scholar
  2. Public Records and Archives Administration Department (PRAAD), Ghana: Accra - ADM 11/975; Cape Coast - CSO21/17/1; Kumasi - 735C; Tamale - RAT/1/23.Google Scholar
  3. The National Archive (TNA), UK: Kew - CO267/171 Dr. Madden’s Report on the Gold Coast and its Dependencies, 1842. Google Scholar


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victoria Ellen Smith
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of History, University of GhanaLegonGhana

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