Cape Cooast Castle
The Cape Coast Castle was built by the British. It is from about
1665. That´s when they started it´s development. It went up taking
the British about 50 years to put up this totally. And the castle
was built up in steps. Originally it was a fort, put up here by
the Swedish. The Swedish fort was named "Kalorisbel" The fort
was built on different locations. The fort passed through the
Danes, the Dutch... The British built it up to the castle.
Some of the material used - like some wood, marbel stones, band
bricks were imported from England to this place. The British also
brought in masins and cobincase.They used some Africans to construct
The country was then called Gold Coast, because of the abundance
of gold found here. Cape Coast was the first capital town of the
country. The castle also was the seat of the British government
till 1877. Precisely until when the capital was moved to Accra.
The British contracted the castle because of trade and commerce.
Actually they came here to buy gold, ivory and some Africans.
Those is the way trouble was in the country.
When I´m talking about trouble wars, I mean wars between two tribes.
And the typical example, was the war between the Ashantis, Kumasi
people, and the Fantis, people living here. And the prisoners
of wars were sold as slaves. There were also some slaves trade
dealers who bring them from towns and villages. Sometimes most
of men in the societey were sold. Others were from delivery of
other African countries like la Cote d´Ivoire´, Benin, southern
part from Algeria. .
Slave Trade Dealers
Now it was a place up here called "Hall" from where the buying
or the selling of the captivans take place. Up there when the
windows are open where the buy or the sell of the captivans actually
took place between the local slave trade dealers and the British.
The trade was watched through the board assistant. Exchange of
goods, like fire arms, iron goods, bruster from of nacked or bowls,
green carbouts, tomatoes and the Akans where also there.
In the hall the woman were separated from the men. Female captivans
were down there, and male captivans were held here. Many captivans
from this castle were mostly taken to USA and some other Carrebean
countries to work there. Some were taken from the Carrebeans to
England around Liverpool and Bristol. Others went to Wales.
The castle has now become a tourist centre. And the people from
all over the world visit here. Many foreigners will come down
here, our mostly African Americans or Africans in the diaspora.
The castle is also listed by the Unesco as one of the world heritage
When the ship arrived, the ship will come from England and it
will be ancered there. And it will have the male captivans there
after passed through a tunnel to join the women and from the shore
the captivans will be taken by the smaller boats to join the ship
- then to other countries or the Caribeans to work there. Then
they were farmworkers like tobacco, cottage, sugar - were taken
to feed the illasses... in Europe. And that became the trancular??/transatlantic
trade from Europe to Westcoast, Westcoast to America, than to
Europe. And some Americans are dark in color - they have their
And then during the "ancestor" or this storytelling, there are
songs in some of the stories, so when they are singing, clapping
hands, some things have to come in to make it more lively. So
they started to bring clapping hand and then drumming into it.
So when they are singing and then they are drumming and then they
are clapping, it make the whole thing very, very lively and enjoyable.
So when they are drumming, no one will sleep, rather anybody will
This is a typical dangon, believe it or not - the dungeon was
something like a cell - as many as thousand would be held here!
The treat went on for many years. The captivans slept here. In
the daytime they had acess to the court yard. Those who had fighted
for their freedom were held here in chains. Please come by the
side - look carefully - watch your step! No light in daytime -
It was so dark that it was difficult to identify your neighbour.
Some of the captivans died from the overcrowded and no light and
the bad conditions, some suffered from tropical deseases like
malaria, yellow fever, sleeping sickness as well as marbitrician.
Those who where captured from the northern part of the country
like Kumasi or Tamale or Warholsalame they have to walk down to
Cape Coast. Some covered distances over some hundred kilometers
by foot. And while marching from the countryside to the coast
some died - by the way here some died.
About 45% died.
In the whole room stayed more than one thousand people. If the
ship has just left, they stayed here for about two month. Every
six weeks there was a ship. If the ship has just left yesterday,
you have to wait. They slept here, but in the daytime they had
chance to be in the courtyard. They stayed outside, but they slept
here in the night! There were also children. Many children didn´t
survife! Men and women were captured, but some women carried around
their babies... Many children suffered from the conditions, it
wasn´t very good for them.
When the ship arrived
When the ship arrived, this was the tunnel were the captivans
passed to the ship. That´s the entrance where the captivans passed.
They came out on the court, then they were taken by smaller boats
to join the ship. So they passed through the tunnel, then they
came to the shore, they were taken by smaller boats or canoes
to join the ship. We will have a look outside to see it.
Slave trade abolished
The tunnel was closed by the British, when the slave trade was
abolished in England in1807. The transatlantic slave trade was
abolished in all the British territories, but here because of
the demand the trade didn´t stop instantly. The trade went on
secretly and probably outside the castle till about 1865 or a
little longer. When the slave trade was stopped here, it was replaced
with legal trade like palm oil, palm candle and those kinds.
"Point of no return"
And this was the outlet or the gateway to America and the Caribeans.
It was a small passage, but when the slavetrade was abolished,
it was widen, so people could going in and going out...
When the ship arrived, the men came to join the woman. The door
was opened and the captions were taken by boat to join the ship
and then to America!
That´s the point of no return. Here the captions were taken by
smaller boats or canoes similar to this ones to join the ship,
then to America.
The women were held here. So you know we had 300 women against
1000 men. There used to be 3 women to 10 men! The men were more
than women - they captured more men than woman, as the price for
men was higher. The men were not so weak, were more evicently
What did they pay for one man? - They first made the price in
Did nobody escape from here? Was there a possibility to fight
back against.... - Some escaped!
Okay, that´s all!