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Imperialism | Colonial Policy


Atlas German Colonies, with Yearbook, edited by the German Colonial Society, 1906, Retrospective on Kamerun's Development in 1905
Retrospective on Kamerun's Development in 1905

(p.10) In Kamerun in 1905 there has been unrest among the indigenous at several locations. The Ndsimu and Njem tribes of the Ssanga-Ngoko region, attracted by the large stores of wares brought into the country, have raided whites and their settlements. But the murder of a white merchant in November 1904 near Molundu, in the extreme southeastern corner of the protectorate, has been punished energetically. Still, the situation in the protectorate's south is not yet cleared up. The station Lomie still has to work on securing communication with the coast. In January 1905 the station chief of Jaunde was compelled to react on raids by the Bapea. In the Cross region peace has been restored and the new station Ossidinge is being reconstructed. In this year's first months Col. Müller, the Schutztruppe commander, undertook an expedition into the Manenguba Mountains. He brought back many detailed maps, so that another white spot on Kamerun's maps can be filled. Economic results are the following : despite the lack of political unity the tribes populating the Manenguba Mountains trade intensely with each other. Because of the difficult terrain the tribes inhabiting the plateau do not trade with those living to the south of it. But among themselves the peoples inhabiting the Manenguba have many connecting trade routes, as do the peoples in the plain and on the plateau. The many markets and the many paths concentrating there bewitness it. The list of export articles is topped by palm kernels; the area between Manenguba and Nlonako has rich stands of oil palms. Ivory takes second place. Kola and peanuts could be of higher importance, if their cultivation would be promoted with more emphasis. With the exception of the Ngoko Plain and the border stretch along the Nun the area to the northeast of the Manenguba Mountains is well-cultivated on average, in certain stretches (p.11) even cultivated excellently. In the southern part of the Bamenda region farm touches farm, and where the area under cultivation ends, pasture land with fertile grass begins, where numerous herds graze. In order to exploit the blackish soil of the lands in front of the Manenguba Mountains, the yellow clay of the Ngoko Plain, the reddish clay of the plateau,
Col. Muller suggests the cultivation of rice, rubber and cotton. On the plateau and, during the dry season also in the plain, communication by ox-cart seems possible, under the condition that appropriate draught animals are broght in. The indigenous cattle, including the buckle cattle, does not suffice. But the question of immunization against the Tsetse Fly has to be solved beforehand.
In Adamaua, concerning violent acts of the pagan tribes dwelling in the highland, peace was soon restored.
In July there had been an incident on the border to the French Congo. In Missum-Missum a German factory had been terminated and robbed by French Senegal-soldiers, in violation of the law. The chief of the border district, Captain Scheuermann, was shot at when he marched into Missum-Missum. During the defense, his men shot 5 attackers and made 4 prisoners. The governor of Kamerun filed a protest and sent the Schutztruppe commander, Col. Müller, to Gabon, the seat of the French government. The matter has been solved by preliminary talks in Paris and soon afterwards to commissions of both stations were dispatched to clarify the conditions along Kamerun's entire southern and eastern border.
We have extensively described the economic conditions of the Manenguba Region, because it is planned to become the end of the railway beginning at Duala. The plan has been handed in to the Reichstag in spring 1905, but was not accepted during the session in May when it was debated for the third time, because of lack of quorum; so several months of 1906 will pass, until the pickaxe will take action in Duala. The line is planned to be 160 km long. Of the 17 million Mark capital, the construction corporation has raised 6 million; for the remainder of 11 million, lent from banks, the Reich is asked to guarantee payment of the interests. In addition for economic and strategic purposes, the railway also serves hygienic purposes, as it can easily transport officers from the coastal areas prone with fever into the healthier mountain regions.
The services of the floating dock installed by the Woermann Line in Duala in fall 1904, with a capacity of 1200 t, have been called upon intensely, both by ships of the line itself as well as by government steamers, and even more by ships of foreign nations. The Woermann line further constructed a pier at Victoria, of 180 m length, on 53 cast-iron screw poles.
In Victoria the government installed a water pipeline, feeding seven fountains and two hydrants. The establishment of pipes supplying the houses is considered. This would not only contribute to raising the hygienic conditions, but also facilitate to supply the large steamers with potable water; a strong branch pipe will reach the pier, currently under construction, and will facilitate the loading, via two lighters, of the entire amount of water needed for the back journey.
The conditions of production and marketing have changed little> An official sent into the districts Kribi, Lolodorf, Ebolowa, Jaunde and Lomie verified that the fear, the caoutchouc stands could be damaged by overexploitation, were not unfounded. So strong measures have been taken to prevent it. On plantations, now, next to cocoa Kickxia is planted. In the report year the cocoa harvest did not entirely meet expectations. The result may be 
described as tolerable, despite the fact that excessive humidity caused damage (according to the last annual report by the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce).
The botanical garden in Victoria has been split up into a botanical and a botano-chemical department. From now on it operates under the name "Versuchsanstalt fur Landkultur" ("Experimental Station for Land Cultivation").
The Mining Corporation founded last year, which has discovered subterranean layers containing petrol on the left bank of the Wuri, has installed to drilling towers. Final successes have not yet been made, but the corporation has announced to have found petrol in five mining sectors.
Trade in Kamerun still largely is barter trade. The government strives to introduce coins and, during the past year, has pais government workers not in kind, but in money, which went without difficulties. Also in the Cross Region, against expectations, the use of money has settled and blacks who did not know money just months ago, now ask for it instead of tobacco, which used to be asked for in addition to foodstuffs and cloth, as pay. This is 
releaving for the stations of the interior, as the transport of tobacco is expensive and difficult. 
In the protectorate's south, population movements have been observed, where the jungle tribes of the Ndsimu (p.12) and Jaunde slowly move westward. In the Kusseri District strong immigration has been observed, because of the stabilization of the political conditions. Based on estimates the indigenous population (men, women and children) in the following districts is believed to be : Duala 65 000, Kribi 20 000, Lolodorf 40 000, Jaunde 70 000, Lomie 94 000, Kampo 5800, Viktoria 3800, Johann Albrechtshohe 61 000, Rio del Rey 30 000, Ossidinge 19 000, Bamenda 154 000.
The increase of the white population from January 1st 1904 to January 1st 1905 from 710 to 826 amounts to 16 %, i.e. one-sixth. The increase was even larger among the women and has strengthened the dominant position of the Germans among the whites. By occupation the strongest element are the merchants (268), followed by state officials (110), then planters etc. (108), missionaries (90), Schutztruppe dependants (73), craftsmen (33) etc.
The increase in the white population is caused by the increase in trade and the extension of the plantations, in the installation of the dock service at Duala and the drilling activities of the mining corporation. It promises to be a lasting one, what we wish for the protectorate, which always has been somewhat neglected by the motherland.


Colonial Literature of 1905. (main titles) (p.12)

Rene, C. Kamerun u. die Deutsche Tsadsee-Eisenbahn, (Kamerun and the German Lake Chad Railroad), with 3 maps. E. S. Mittler & Sohn, Berlin 1905. 6 M.

Schkopp, E. v. Kameruner Skizzen. (Kamerun sketches) Winckelmann & Sohne, Berlin 1905. 2,25 M.

Storz, Chr., Reisebriefe aus Westafrika u. Beiträge zur Entwicklung der deutschen Kolonien in Togo und Kamerun. (travel letters from West Africa and contributions to the development of Germany's colonies in Togo and Kamerun)
edited by v. J. Hess, Stuttgart 1906. 0.50 M.

Togo und Kamerun. Eindrücke und Momentaufnahmen. Von einem deutschen Abgeordneten, (Impressions and snapshots by a German member of Reichstag) m.K. W. Weicher, Leipzig 1905. 2.80.


Source: Deutscher Kolonial-Atlas mit Jahrbuch (Atlas German Colonies with Yearbook), edited by the Deutsche Kolonialgesellschaft (German Colonial Society). Berlin 1906, p.10ff.

GM (digitalisation) and AG (translation) 
posted on the web for psm-data; many thanks to

Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin / Preußischer Kulturbesitz 

Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz


Dokument in deutscher Sprache