The History of the Gold Coast and Asante

The History of Gold Coast and Asante[1] is a preserved work of oral tradition by Carl Christian Reindorf (1834–1917) and considered a pioneering work and a "historical classic" and entirely written in English and Ga language. He completed his work in 1889 and published in 1895 in Basel.[2]

The History of the Gold Coast and Asante
AuthorCarl Christian Reindorf Hackenburg
  • Ga
  • English
PublisherGhana University Press


The work was a full-length Western-style history of a region in Africa by the first African that was published.[3] The work was inspired by the publishing work of his colleague Johann Gottlieb Christaller in preserving oral tradition. J. G. Christaller during his time in Ghana in the third quarter of the nineteenth century worked on extensively on oral tradition.[4] In preserving an oral tradition, the history of Gold Coast and Asante won a permanent place in the annals of African history.[2]


The book has 29 chapters arranged chronologically.The book covers the period BC600-750 and AD1400-1700 with short description of " Gold Coast; the Kingdom of Guinea; expeditions sent by Pharaoh Necho and the Carthiginians; F. Romber’s reference to the Kingdom of Benin; traditional accounts of emigration to the coast; tribes assumed to have been the aboriginal races on the coast, and their conquest".[5]

The final chapter covers the period 1851-1856 : "administration of justice according to English law & its effects; imposition & collection methods of a poll tax, and conspiracy to refuse payment; bombardment of Christiansborg, Labadi and Teshi; peace and the rebuilding of Christiansborg."


The purpose of the book as stated by the author ;

  • Need for such history by a Ghanaian
  • conscious of the customs and tradition of Ghana.[5]


The customs and their usage in the book are relevant to interpretation of Law as an authority in the Law Courts of Ghana.[5]



  1. ^ "Reindorf, Carl Christian (C)". Archived from the original on 2017-11-26. Retrieved 2020-08-06.
  2. ^ a b "Carl Christian Reindorf, Ghana, Basel Mission". 2016-07-08. Archived from the original on 2016-07-08. Retrieved 2020-08-06.
  3. ^ Hauser, Heinz (2004). "Tradition meets Modernity: C. C. Reindorf and his History of the Gold Coast and Asante A late 19 th century voice from urban Accra". Transactions of the Historical Society of Ghana (8): 227–255. ISSN 0855-3246. JSTOR 41406715.
  4. ^ "Reindorf, Carl Christian, Ghana, Basel Mission Church". 2015-04-10. Archived from the original on 2015-04-10. Retrieved 2020-08-06.
  5. ^ a b c "African Books Collective: History of the Gold Coast and Asante". Retrieved 2020-08-06.